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Personal care

Our favourite products—Amandine’s September 2020 edition

Photography by Tracey Creed
Words by Amandine Paniagua


Published September 26 2020

Welcome Our Favourite Products, a monthly feature of the products keeping our skin glowing, mood lifted and health high. It's a combination of the new things we've tried over the previous month and historic repeat purchases that we think you might love too. And as part of our editorial policy, every product we write about is vegan, cruelty-free and 100% natural and where possible organic. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the idea of incorporating clean beauty and wellness products into your daily routine — or even finding them, we hope you find the following helpful. And as a reminder, a constant favourite of mine — clean filtered water. Drink it frequently, daily. Here's what I'm loving this month:

This month, I am focusing on cruelty-free makeup brands. For those with ethical concerns, there are so many brands, and still, the offering isn’t always accessible—so here are three, vegan and cruelty-free brands I gathered throughout the year. I focused on eye makeup. There will be more to come! What are your favourite cruelty-free and vegan makeup brands? (for social only)

Aleph Beauty Radiance

I have written about cruelty-free, makeup brand Aleph Beauty before, first here. I am an avid user of their luxurious facial serum. This month, I am using Radiance, the iridescence shade range. Applicable to almost every part of your body—eyes, lips, chicks, décolletage, or even arms, this creamy highlighter illuminates wherever you feel. At the moment, I apply the Sun tint on my eyelid for a shiny eyeshadow. I also use it under my brows for some shimmering. Paired with the Foundation Concealer or the Serum Primer, Radiance Sun also makes a beautiful bronzer. Moon is slightly silvery, and I like to use it to highlight the inner corner of my eyes.

To use, dab a small amount of Radiance with your finger, or the Aleph spatula and rub onto your hand to slightly melt the product. Disperse Radiance on your eyelid with your brush or finger. Tip from this tutorial video: start from the outer edge of your lid, working towards the inner corner of your eye. To know where to begin on the outer edge, take a brush or a pencil. Lay the brush alongside the edge of the nose to the corner eye, and the edge of the brow. That will give you the perfect angle flattering your look. Blend the products into the eyelid skin, lightly tapping with your finger. Like with every Aleph product, the wear is premium, lasting long without smudging. The high-quality ingredients also work to improve the skin condition. Another plus, it is easy to remove. There are so many options and applications possible with these products. I believe it is all about the length of our creativity.

Chantecaille Luster Glide Silk Infused Eye Liner

After finishing my last eyeliner pencil, I was on the hunt for an alternative. The offering is not that extensive for this specific product, so I followed Trace’s advice and purchased from the cruelty-free makeup brand Chantecaille. At the heart of this family-own business lies a passion for beauty, botanic and innovation. Through pure ingredients, science and meticulous formulation, Sylvie Chantecaille and her daughter Olivia develop a range of highly effective products—free of Phthalates, Sulphate Detergents, Mineral Oil, Petrolatum, Palm Oil, Synthetic Colours, Synthetic Fragrances and GMOs. Deeply committed to the environment, it is not a surprise that Chantecaille’s products are cruelty-free and vegan. The family also financially supports causes dear to their heart, from animal welfare to land conservation. Chantecaille is here to change the world, and the company raised the bar relatively high for the beauty industry.

My approach to eye pencil is straightforward. I use a single colour. I quickly draw a line on the bottom eye, occasionally on the upper eyelid; and I go on with my life. The shades themselves may vary, but I am faithful to black kohl, I love pure dark pigments. The Luster Glide Silk Infused Eye Liner Raven version is probably one of the most luxurious makeup products I own. First, the price. At NZ$53 for a pencil, I use it with care, which is fine as I don’t wear full makeup daily. Then the application. I would resume the experience in one word, delightful. The pencil glides on the skin, delivering a firm, yet a creamy line of pure pigments, defining and opening the eye. The texture is smudgy enough to create smokey eyes if you have this kind of expertise, yet your wing line will stay in place for long hours without fading or blending. Bonus, like all my vegan products, this pencil is easy to remove. Chantecaille Luster Glide Silk Infused Eye Liner exceeded my expectations, this is a high quality, standout pencil, and I want it for life.

W7 Very Vegan Black Mascara

W7 is a British, strictly cruelty-free makeup brand, founded in 2002. Super affordable, they do not use heavy metals such as TBO preservatives and develop a vegan range—broadening the offering for those looking for a higher standard, at a lower price point. I don’t wear makeup daily, but when I am motivated, I like to apply a dash of mascara. It lengthens and intensifies the eyelashes, and opens up the eyes. Dark, thick mascara is my favourite. Working for both day and night, you can play layering the product for different looks.

Gifted by Isabella, the Very Vegan Black Mascara came as a surprise. With a wand made for “emphasising and elongating dramatic lashes”, I didn’t know what to expect. On usage, the brushes properly separate the lashes, for a smooth and quick application without clumping. The eyelashes are naturally elongated, generously coated within black without the heaviness, for an elegant look. Super cheap, long-lasting, and with many reviews reporting it is suitable for sensitive eyes, this mascara ticks all the boxes. Transforming eyelashes for a voluminous and sophisticated look, the W7 Very Vegan Black Mascara is a new beauty staple for me. I wish they had a brown version for a “no makeup” look!

Everything we create is an effort to participate in a culture shift. All products featured are independently selected and curated by the authors, and we only feature items we use or would use ourselves that align with our values. As part of our business model, we do work with affiliates such as Amazon. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases if you decide to purchase through our links. The price would be the same to you either way, but if you find value in our work, then these affiliate links are a way to support it. We only recommend brands, makers and products we use — that we support. Transparency is important to us, so if you have any questions, please reach out to us.

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