Your beauty routine might be undergoing a major change

12417885_1164947723516093_8245801717698571198_nBefore my friend Margaret introduced me to Beautycounter, I assumed that when I bought shampoo, lotion, or makeup, someone, somewhere, had independently verified that the products were safe.  I was disheartened to learn that personal-care products and cosmetics are hardly regulated in the U.S.  This led me to not only switch over almost all of my products to Beautycounter but also to sign up as a Beautycounter consultant to educate others and  help get safe products into the hands of everyone.   This recent article from Teen Vogue is a great summary of what is going on in the beauty industry today.  Please read and share it with those you love, especially the young women in your lives.

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Here are some highlights:

😡The legislation around the personal care industry dates back to 1938 so almost 80 years of self regulation and little oversight.

😡The US currently bans 30 ingredients. The European band about 1400 out of a total of 6,500 ingredients that are reportedly used in cosmetics today.

😡“The law doesn’t require cosmetic firms . . . to submit their products, ingredients, labeling, or claims to FDA for approval before the products go on the market,” according to a spokesperson for the FDA.

😡The FDA doesn’t have the power to do total recalls of beauty products.
Once a product is on shelves or in salons, there’s not much anyone (except the brand responsible) can do to get it off the market. Example: Wen Hair care- 21,000 complaints and still being sold while investigations are still ongoing.

😡The government’s limited control over personal-care products is also concerning given that in some cases they contain substances that can potentially do a lot more than superficial damage. A whole host of hormone-disrupting and possibly carcinogenic substances can be found in these products, ranging from carbon black (a suspected carcinogen) in nail polish, to those formaldehyde-releasing chemicals in hair products, to phthalates in makeup, lotion, nail products, and body washes.

😡That’s a lot of potential exposure, given that the Environmental Working Group has found adult women use an average of 12 products per day, containing an estimated 168 chemicals, and teenage girls use nearly 17 products per day on average. In addition, another EWG report, out last year, found that products marketed to black women included higher quantities of hazardous substances such as parabens, formaldehyde, and lye (a key ingredient in some hair relaxers that has been linked to hair loss and scalp burns).

😡Cancer, infertility and other reproductive orders, allergies, asthma, autism, ADHD are increasing even with all the research and work towards a “cure”. Example: Parabens are found in breast cancer tissue.

There are two bills in the works to improve the situation, although not solve the problem. It’s a start and we need your voice and your vote with your daily actions and make safer, cleaner choices and share this with others!

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Beautycounter: Lasting Gifts for Holiday 2017

If you’re determined to get your holiday shopping done before Thanksgiving this year I can help! I’ve got great gift ideas for everyone on your list thanks to Beautycounter’s gorgeous holiday sets. This year’s collection is the biggest one yet with 18 new sets (3 currently sold out,) 10 never-before-seen products and 47 new makeup shades,  great gifts at every price point. Shop them all here and please don’t hesitate to reach out if I can help with anything (sallymacncheese@gmail.com) bc-holiday-collage

Things I love:

  • Hand soaps in new scents
  • 7 new lip gloss colors AND 6 new lip stick colors with higher pigmentation
  • 2 shades of liquid eye liner​ perfect for dramatic holiday looks and coordinated cream shadows
  • Ultimate Nudes Eye Palette with deeper pigmentation than our existing eye colors and a pop-out mirror
  • As always, beautiful packaging ready for a bow so you can give the lasting gift of safer skincare and cleaner cosmetics!
  • Men’s collection is coming soon!

From now until the end of November, all purchases of $100 or more will qualify for a drawing. The winner will receive your choice of The Winter Jewels Palette or the Nude Eye Trio! 

Place an order online or contact me by Noon ET on Tuesday, Nov 30, 2017 to be entered to win!

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Sunscreen Safety Tips

 

Are you already tired of the annual discussion about sunscreen? Which one isn’t going to kill you? Which one leaves white chalky streaks?  Which company is getting sued because too many people burned when they used it? Every year the EWG report comes out and the one you were devoted to last summer has somehow gone from getting a 2 rating to a 4… and that just won’t do.  You can make yourself crazy trying to figure out what’s what!

So, here’s the plain and easy:

  • Seek the shade when you can.
  • Avoid the sun during peak hours when possible (10ish to 2ish.)
  • Use sun-protective clothing. A typical T-shirt has an SPF rating of 15.
  • Wear sunscreen. Often.
  • Wear enough sunscreen. (Enough to fill a shot glass.)
  • Make sure your sunscreen is “broad-spectrum” with a SPF of 50 or less. Anything over 50 is useless and can cause more harm than good.
  • Avoid products with questionable ingredients when you can. Chemical sunscreens, like those with the ingredient oxybenezone, absorb through the skin and may disrupt the hormone system. Retinyl palmitate and retinol are forms of vitamin A that may speed the development of skin tumors when applied to sun-exposed skin.
  • Choose non-nano zinc oxide when possible.
  • Skip the aerosol sprays.

And with all this in mind, remember…

  • “Bad sunscreen” is better than no sunscreen and a sunburn.

Again, the key to living a healthier life is to reduce our overall burden. The less crap we put in and on our bodies the better. But life happens and sometimes the safest choice isn’t available.

Here is what’s currently in my car, my purse (i.e. my book bag – maybe when the kids are out of diapers I’ll start using a cute purse again?!) and what I plan to use for a spring and summer full of fun and sun.

pdp-protectalloversunscreenspf30-selling-shot_528x962Beautycounter Protect All Over Sunscreen SPF 30* ($32)

  • Pros
    • Goes on practically clear, no white residue.
    • Non-nano zinc oxide (Nanoparticles are extremely small molecules often found in mineral sunscreens. Little is known about their safety, and their size means that they may be easily absorbed and enter the bloodstream.
  •  Cons
    • Price

PDP-ProtectLipBalmSPF15-SELLING-SHOT_528x962 Beautycounter Protect Lip Balm* ($10)

  • Pros
    • Goes on clear
    • Ingredients like beeswax, shea butter and coconut oil hydrate the lips
    • Scent free
  • Cons
    • Not great for sharing

protectsunscreenstick_600-new.pngBeautycounter Protect Stick Sunscreen for face* ($18) and body ($34)

  • Pros
    • Goes on clear
    • Easy to apply
    • Nice smell for kids
  • Cons
    • Price
    • You may prefer unscented

  dew skin Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer ($45)

  • pros
    • Moisture, sun protection and coverage in one
    • Zinc oxide based tinted solution
    • SPF 20
    • Non-nano particles
    • Can be used under makeup
    • Push nozzle makes dispensing easy
    • Natural looking coverage like a BB cream
  • cons
    • Since sunscreen has to be re-applied every few hours, re-application is a little tricky if you are wearing makeup over it
    • Only 20 SPF
    • As with all Beautycounter products, the company doesn’t supply samples. You have to either make an educated guess on color or work with a consultant like me.  There is also a 60 day money back guarantee if you don’t love the color or coverage.

If you want to learn more about what’s in your sunscreen you can visit the Environmental Working Group’s 2016 Guide to Sunscreens to look up what you’re using or to search for better alternatives.

* Full disclosure. I am a Beautycounter consultant. I sell it because I genuinely love the products and am passionate about the mission to get safe products into the hands of everyone!

10 Ways to Use Beautycounter’s Cleansing Balm

I’d never heard of a “cleansing balm” until my friend introduced me to Beautycounter and I was confused how something could be both a face wash and a moisturizer, but after trying it out, the balm has quickly become one of my top five, must have beauty products. The Cleansing Balm is ten products in one, truly a multi-purpose tool in your bathroom.  Like all Beautycounter products, it’s completely safe and effective.  The balm relies on vitamin C to brighten the appearance of skin and raspberry and cranberry seed oils to hydrate.   In  an independent, 24-hour, 25-subject, single-blind clinical and consumer perception study  100% of women showed a significant increase in skin hydration after eight hours, with an average increase of 25%.16105754_10210987020967636_2141282294486146173_n

The best part? This jar lasts a long time too because you only need about a pea-sized amount for your whole face and it doesn’t have extra water or other fillers.

Here are my top ten uses for Beautycounter’s Cleansing Balm:

  1. To wash face
  2. To remove make up
  3. To moisturize as a rich, anti-aging night cream
  4. To hydrates as an overnight mask
  5. To spot treat acne
  6. To sooth windburn/dry winter skin
  7. To ease itchy pregnant skin
  8. To highlight over make up
  9. To alleviate dry elbows and knees
  10. To soothe chapped lips

Shop the Countertime Cleansing Balm or let me know if you’d like to try a sample!

 

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Happy Valentines by Beautycounter

I’m excited to share that today Beautycounter announced a limited time partnership with côte, a lovely line of non-toxic nail polish. Beautycounter and côte have teamed up to create the perfect Valentine’s Day duo for your loved ones.  Inside a cute red box you’ll find Beautycounter’s high-shine Lip Gloss in Ruby with côte’s safer nail polish in shade B6.

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I love how Beautycounter’s moisturizing and completely safe Lip Gloss goes on smoothly with no stickiness. Its unique teardrop applicator delivers the perfect amount of sheer, infinitely wearable color and subtle shine.  Ruby is a super wearable red perfect for a night out and great for layering over your favorite Lip Sheer.

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All of côte’s polishes and treatments are free of the major harmful ingredients often associated with nail polish, so you get all the chip-resistant, long lasting shine without sacrificing your health.

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You can shop the duo and all of Beautycounter’s wonderful safe products here.

While nail polish doesn’t go on your skin, it is applied on your nail beds so you want to look for the safest polish you can find.  What should you avoid?  This study from researches at Duke and the EWG finds that nail polishes can contain a suspected endocrine disruptor called triphenyl phopshte, or TPHP.

Researchers tested the urine of 26 women volunteers before and after they applied nail polish. They were looking for DPHP, a different chemical created by the body when it metabolizes TPHP. They detected much higher levels of DPHP after the polish was applied.

The scientists at Duke also tested 10 different nail polishes for TPHP itself and found that eight contained it. According to EWG’s Skin Deep database, polishes that list TPHP as an ingredient include such popular brands as Sally Hansen, Essie, OPI, butter LONDON, Revlon and Wet N Wild. You can see the full list here.

Please let me know if I can help find a beautifully safe gift for the ones you love this Valentines Day! xo

Foster’s Chicken Salad

I don’t typically like chicken salad but I’ve always been a fan of the version at Foster’s Market’s so I used this recipe from Sara Foster to make a simple summer dinner for some friends last weekend.  It keeps well for several days, so you can make it ahead of time, adding the apples and grapes the day you serve it.  I omitted the celery (Joe doesn’t like it) and added basil.  I’m linking to the Foster’s recipe for Tarragon mayo but I used olive oil mayo instead and it turned out fine.

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What to buy: (serves 8 to 10)

  • 6 cups cooked chicken, diced (I poached the chicken but rotisserie or grilled would be great too)
  • 1 cup red seedless grapes, washed, drained, and cut in half
  • 1 Granny Smith or other tart apple, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1½ cups Tarragon Mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • rolls

What to do:

  • combine the chicken, celery, grapes, apple, mayonnaise, parsley and basil in a large bowl and stir to mix thoroughly
  • season with salt and pepper.
  • arrange on a platter or plates, I think it’s best served at room temperature

Simple Ways to Make Back to School Safer with Beautycounter

It’s so cliche to say it but it seems like this summer has flown by in a blur of diapers, restless newborn nights and very, very hot days. As the summer winds down and you get ready to take on the fall, I want to share some simple ways you can make your beauty routine and your kid’s bath time safer with Beautycounter.  If you have little ones at home I can’t say enough good things about the kid’s and baby collections from Beautycounter.  When William was a baby I used an expensive French baby wash that I assumed was safe because it had all the right buzzwords on the label and was, well French! When my friend, Margaret, introduced me to Beautycounter and the never list (an extensive list of what Beautycounter will never include and why,) I did some label checking and was dismayed to see that the fancy French wash was loaded with stuff I’d never want to put on my precious baby.  I couldn’t make the switch to Beautycounter’s kid collection fast enough and I haven’t looked back!new-kids-shower-set-600_2

In the last year, and just in time for Charlotte’s arrival into the world, Beautycounter introduced a new baby line which includes a baby wash, baby oil and baby balm.  They’re unscented, gentle as can be and I’ve loved using them on her (and me!) I use the oil as a makeup remover and for extra moisture in my body lotion after an afternoon at the pool.  The balm has been great on diaper rash and any skin irritations (I’ve passed on the gift of sensitive skin to my children.)IMG_9336

Of course the best thing about Beautycounter  – baby, kids and adult skincare – is the safety of the products.  The second best thing is how masterfully everything performs and multitasks, perfect for transitioning seamlessly from one season to the next. Coming out of an oppressive summer when you may have gotten some sun exposure that dehydrated and dulled your complexion, it’s now the ideal time to focus on moisturizing, brightening and firming in preparation for the colder months ahead.

Here are three of my perfect fall essentials to help with this transition:

  1. Rejuvenating Radiance Serum This powerful serum is an anti-aging cream and redness treatment in one. Algae Marine Extracts moisturize, Ginger Root Extract fights irritation, and Mixed Fruit Acid Complex brightens dull skin.
  2. Nourishing Rosewater Mist A versatile, hydrating toner, this mist can also help set makeup and freshen up bedding with a subtle scent. Organic Rose Essence and purified water nourish skin and create a dewy glow.
  3. Cleansing BalmThis anti-aging best seller serves as a cleanser, moisturizer, overnight mask, and even a highlighter over makeup. Raspberry Seed Oil and Cranberry Seed Oil hydrate and revitalize, while Vitamin C brightens skin tone.

You can shop everything here and as always, let me know if you’d like to try anything, have questions about the company or the products or would like to know more about why I’m part of Beautycounter and what we’re doing.13912635_1181220341934974_7183635197405289038_n

Be on the lookout for Beautycounter to grace Target shelves as the first beauty-brand partner! This September, only while supplies last, 22 of our most popular products, packaged in smaller sizes, will introduce 65 million Target shoppers to the best new brand in the personal care industry. There will be a voucher with your purchase that’s redeemable with a Beautycounter consultant for a free gift.  To find us at a Target near you, click here

Hope you have a great end of the summer and a wonderful fall ahead!

Easy, Soft and Delicious Sour Cream Blueberry Muffins

When I saw this recipe at Averie Cooks, I knew I had to try it.  I doubled it so Joe could bring some to his morning workout group and I could give a plate to my parents and it worked out great.  The doubled recipe is below.  DSC_0158

I liked that these didn’t require buttermilk or oil, only a stick of melted butter for the whole batch. The secret to making them so delicious is sour cream, all three cups of it.  I used regular (not fat-free) with success and frozen blueberries which  don’t need to be thawed before adding to the batter.  Frozen ones will stay intact much better during mixing and baking. The muffins don’t get very golden on top so don’t judge their doneness by color, although the more brown sugar you sprinkle, the more golden they’ll be.

What to buy (makes 3 dozen):

  • 4 cups allpurpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 2 pinched salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups sour cream
  • 2 1/2 cups frozen blueberries + more for sprinkling on tops
  • approx. 4 tablespoons brown sugar or sparkling sugar for sprinkling tops

What to do:

  • preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • line muffin pans with liners or spray with a non-stick floured cooking spray
  • in a large bowl, add flour, baking powder, optional salt, and whisk until combined; set aside
  • in a separate large bowl, whisk eggs until well-combined and light-colored, about 20 seconds
  • add white sugar to the eggs and whisk vigorously until thick and combined; set aside.
  • in a small microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter, about 30 seconds
  • allow butter to cool, about 1 to 2 minutes
  • slowly add the butter to the egg sugar mixture, whisking while adding it; or add it in 2 to 3 additions, whisking after each addition until mixture is combined
  • add the vanilla and whisk until combined
  • add the sour cream and whisk until smooth and combined, don’t overmix; set aside
  • add frozen blueberries to the flour mixture (reserving some for topping) tossing lightly with a spatula to coat them  (this prevents berries from sinking while baking)
  • slowly add the egg-sour cream mixture to the flour-blueberries and fold using a spatula until batter comes together, the berries are evenly distributed, and most of the flour bits are folded in (some small spots of flour can remain); don’t over mix (batter will be thick)
  • using a large cookie scoop or cooking-sprayed heaping 1/4-cup measure, equally distribute batter in prepared pan until all batter is gone and has been distributed equally
  • top each muffin with about 2 blueberries and some brown or sparkling sugar
  • bake for about 30 to 35 minutes, rotating pan once midway through baking, until muffins are set in the middle
  • cool in pan for about 15 minutes before removing; they’re best fresh, but will keep airtight at room temp for up to 5 days; or in the freezer for up to 4 months

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“I like toxins in my body,” said no one, ever.

12572984_1117860624900584_151146953487824404_n“I like toxins in my body,” said no one, ever.

Since I became a Beautycounter consultant, almost six months ago, I’ve asked many, many friends to start questioning what they’re putting on their bodies or on their kids.   After all, it’s the only one you have and the only one you’ll ever have.

Turns out that many of you are open to trying something new and to questioning why the beauty industry has not been regulated since 1938 and the vast majority of the ingredients used in products in the US are banned in Europe (they ban 1400 ingredients… we ban 11.)unnamed

Thanks to all of you, your questions, and your drive to make healthier choices for your families, this has become a passion. I am passionate about the products, how effective they are, the peace of mind from using them and my desire to share them with you.

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What are the products I can’t live without?

1. Tint Skin Foundation. Fair and even complexion with hyaluronic acid, a natural moisture magnet, promotes smoother-looking skin and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

2. Clean Everyday Shampoo. Bye-bye itchy scalp and product build-up.   Ingredients derived from coconut oil and amino acids, since conventional surfactants can irritate skin.

3.  Routine Clean  Cream Cleanser.  Face wash, toner and makeup remover in that never makes your skin feel dry or tight.  No sodium laurel sulfate, which can cause irritation and trigger allergies and is often contaminated with 1,4-dioxane – a cancer-causing chemical.

4. Protect All Over Sunscreen SPF 30.  No greasy residue, no white marks, no chemical sun blockers like oxybenzone, which soaks through skin, triggers allergic skin reactions, and may be a hormone disruptor.23-Beautycounter-Body_Hair_Sunscreen_824x376_3

5. Style Sea Salt Spray.  Volumizing, lightweight, and long-lasting Sea Salt Spray gives your hair touchable texture without drying it out.  Here are two pictures from clients to show the results on short and long hair.  Volumizing hair sprays often contain hormone-disrupting phthalates in their synthetic fragrances, as well as polyethylene glycols (PEGs), conditioning agents that may be contaminated with measurable amounts of the carcinogens ethylene oxide and 1,4-dioxane. Not here!

6. Uplifting Day Cream.  Redness relief and smoother skin.  No DMDM hydantoin, a preservative that works by releasing formaldehyde, a carcinogen that prevents the growth of microorganisms (present in approximately 20% of cosmetics and personal care products in the US.) No retinol or retinyl palmitate, two of the most common ingredients in anti-aging products. When vitamin A is exposed to UV light, it can produce free radicals that damage DNA, cause gene mutations and may play a part in causing cancer.

7.  Lip Sheer in Petal or Twig. Smooth and long-lasting formula, ultra moisturizing.  The average woman consumes 7 pounds of lipstick in a decade so I want to avoid synthetic fragrances, flavors or other ingredients! 11903749_974578055937783_2573168647559485391_n

Thanks for reading and please reach out if you’d like to try some samples! Follow along on Facebook here,  purchase products directly from my site here (http://www.beautycounter.com/sallymccaffrey) If you’re interested in becoming a consultant yourself, e-mail me at sallymacncheese@gmail.com.

xo, Sally

 

 

 

Sundried Tomato and Basil Meatloaf

We’re officially snowed/iced in for the near future so I’m taking advantage of the cozy time inside to finally post a new recipe.  Since I hit the second trimester, (I’m pregnant with a baby girl due in May!) I’ve been craving cheeseburgers and hot dogs.  It was so out of control last week that I vowed to stop going through the Cookout drive-thru and to start trying to satiate the craving for red meat with healthier options.

 Enter this Italian style meatloaf with basil, sundried tomatoes and garlic!  I made individual meatloaves because they cook faster and I didn’t have to dirty a loaf pan.  While this isn’t the most photogenic meal, I promise, they’re delicious and easy to put together in minutes, especially if you have a mini-chopper or food processor on hand to mince the sundried tomatoes, garlic and herbs.  I mixed up a little ketchup and hotsauce to serve on the side along with mashed potatoes and roasted broccoli.  Now what to do about my insane, daily desire for hot dogs….

What to buy (serves 2):

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/4 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes
  • 1 small shallot
  • 2 gloves garlic
  • 1 small bunch of basil (minced it is about 1/4 cup)
  • 1 small piece white or Italian bread (something on the dryer side)

What to do:

  • preheat the oven to 375 degrees
  • mince the tomatoes, shallot, garlic and basil together (I used a mini chopper to make this go quickly)
  • in a bowl, soak bread with beef broth until well combined
  • add beef, minced mixture, salt and pepper to bread, using your hands to combine
  • form the beef mixture into two small football-shaped loaves and place on a foil covered baking tray
  • cook for 12-15 minutes or until meatloaves are cooked through

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