DISCLAIMER: Skin care doesn’t work the same for everyone – we each have extremely complex bodies, and while one product works great on one person, it make break you out. Please use caution, read ingredients, and use what works best for you. I do not sell this product, and they did not pay me to write this review.
So I guess you could say I’m a lover of all things “beauty” – skin care, hair care, and my personal favorite – makeup. While I am not an over-the-top, paid-YouTube makeup guru or anything, I like to pretend I understand the meaning of the word “glam.” I spend many an hour watching those quirky gurus paint their faces with ease and grace, using glitter shadow and bright eye color (both of which I’m not bold – or young – enough to rock).
My shallow – and somewhat sad – dream, is to have an extra room in my home that I could dedicate as a “beauty room” (if hubs gets a man cave, I get a beauty room!). It would be an office too, of course, but mostly a fun “get ready to go out” room.
If I had endless funds, my beauty room would be fancifully filled with the best skin care, hair care and makeup, makeup brushes, makeup drawers and a dramatic vanity table, fully-equipped with a Hollywood mirror (the one with all the light bulbs around it!), and comfy chair on which to sit while I paint my 40-something, not-so-taut face. The room lighting would be perfect, and there wouldn’t be a single cat hair on my makeup brushes! (Grr!)
Below is a photos of what I have currently. Basically, it’s a computer desk, transformed with a layer of marble-y contact paper, one foot from my bed:
As someone who has a talent in art (but not currently active in the hobby), I have a LOT of fun with makeup. It is really my form of art – for now. Makeup helps me express creativity in a practical way. I so look forward to Saturday mornings, when I’m off work, so that I can take my time and try out fun new looks. It’s actually therapeutic.
If you’re a fan of makeup, and would like to try all kinds of items but you don’t want to spend an arm and a leg – try BOXYCHARM! (see the link below to SHOP!!!!) I am LOVING it! If you are new to makeup subscriptions, here’s the gist: you take a quiz on their website, stating what colors you like and your skin tone, etc., and every month you will get a box in the mail with 4-5 full-sized, higer-ish-end makeup and skin care products!
The value of the whole box is usually about $100, which is a steal. There is different pricing options. If you pay month-by-month, I believe it’s $21/month. Or, you could pre-pay for a 3, 6 or 12 month subscription. The price decreases the longer the subscription. I did the 6 month one, and I believe it was about $19/month. Feel free to use my referral link and shop here: BOXYCHARM
So, back to skin care…
Every morning I start out with a blank canvas. But, I’ve learned over the years that our canvas is only as good as the products we use on it (and the nutrients we put in our bodies when we eat). In my 4 decades of life, I’ve tried most popular skin care products you can think of (to name a few: Mary Kay, Shiseido, Neutrogena, Proactiv, Dermalogica, Clinique, Cetaphil, Caudalie, a “Dead Sea” something-or-other from a mall kiosk, a bar of soap, and more).
Only ONE brand has actually cleaned, hydrated, helped with fine lines, AND made my skin feel like VELVET. More on that later…
How DID I find my “holy grail” skin care?
Five years ago, I attended a “spa party” at my sister’s house. Yeah, you know it, one of those MLM companies where consultants do “parties” and all the ladies in attendance try on makeup, sip vino, and pretend to care what the person is selling (some don’t even pretend to care – and some can even be flat out rude!). This spa party in particular consisted of detox “European facials” and relaxing “foot soaks.”
I have to admit, before attending this party, I didn’t know much at all about skin care. My actual skin care routine consisted of washing and toning my face with Shiseido cleanser, and adding a tiny bit of moisturizer. I was always unhappy with the result – even though it wasn’t cheap! I always had dry, dull patches below my eyes, no matter how much moisturizer I slapped on.
I couldn’t afford to keep spending money to try new products, and toss my old ones. I was hoping the products at the spa party would be the answer to my skin care problems. The products were from *drum roll* …. ARBONNE International.
You may have heard of Arbonne, because it’s grown quite a bit in the U.S. over the past decade or so. They are a European company, which I love, because Europeans have a much higher standard on the ingredients used in their personal products.
The consultant at the party, Nikki, taught us that Arbonne was a 35-year old skin care company from Norway, created by Peter Morck. (Sweet! I’m 100% Norwegian – sooo, these are my PEEPS!) Already loving it.
Arbonne’s products are gluten-free, cruelty-free, vegan, and free of all the typical dangerous substances (i.e., mineral oil, phlalates, parabens, waxes, sulfates, etc.) Perfect! Being a Certified Aromatherapist, I am always looking into incorporating more natural products into my life as I can (while not being a die-hard, annoying “crunchy” person). All in moderation.
So, back to the actual spa party. At said party, I was asked to wash my face with Arbonne’s RE9 Advanced anti-aging foaming face wash. Eek! The vulnerability of exposing my facial redness/broken capillaries to the world! Okay, maybe it was just 4 ladies, but still…
Then, we applied a detox mud mask to our faces face and let it sit for 15 minutes before wiping off with a hot wet wash cloth. It was relaxing and the products smelled great.
After washing off the detox mask, my face sort of burned. I was a little upset that my cheeks were even more red than they were prior to the party! Nikki reassured me that any redness was from the product “detoxing the impurities from my skin.” Apparently, the more times you use this mask, the less burn you feel as your skin is more and more detoxified.
At the end of the party, I purchased a small makeup item, and I only did it to help my sister earn free products for hosting the party. I wasn’t about to spend the big bucks on something I used once, and made my face burn.
But later that night…. ooooh baby.
While lying in bed, I couldn’t believe how incredibly soft my cheeks felt after the burn faded. My skin was akin to silk, or even velvet (more like velvet, because my face is kind of fuzzy – it’s a Scandinavian thing!!! I think). I kept rubbing my face, saying “oh, wow…oh, wow.” I got some weird looks from the husband.
No product has ever come close to giving me a refreshed, clean feeling – let alone leave my skin nourished and healthy.
The reason my skin felt so good was that Arbonne’s RE9 anti-aging skin care line actually balances the pH of every type of skin – dry or oily. Their night cream also had a refreshing, moisturizing feeling, that I actually felt HYDRATED, not tight, dry or itchy. And certainly not oily. My skin was cool and relaxed. Was it a miracle? Or a fluke?? Needless to say, I was hooked.
After waking up the next morning and literally SEEING a difference in the texture of my skin, I contacted Nikki and signed up for the consultant discount (35% off everything for a year). I let her know that I DID NOT want to do the business, I only wanted discounted products.
Over the years, I’ve come to love just about every one of Arbonne’s products. In my honest opinion, their skin care, makeup and nutrition products can’t be beat. And the protein shake powder – HOLY CANNOLI – delicious! Best I’ve EVER tried – no aftertaste and actually tastes good.
Arbonne has a few different skin care lines for each skin type. Anti-aging, sensitive skin, regular skin, teen skin, mature skin, etc. But most customers come back for the RE9 line. It’s simply the best and it’s what they’re known for. None of their other skin care lines worked well on my skin.
Even with the discount, the products were still pretty expensive for me to purchase regularly, and so I caved and started doing the business (multi-level marketing). It was scary, but exciting, as I pushed myself to do something outside of my protected little bubble.
I did spa parties at a few friends homes, and booked parties off of those parties, in order to get a lot of product for free. This went on for a little while (maybe 1.5 years) until I couldn’t book any more parties. Boo 😦
My business basically fizzled after running out of my warm market (i.e., I don’t have many friends/family who are interested in hosting parties), and I wasn’t good at seeking out a cold market. I was freaking out because I needed this skin care. Thankfully we stretched our budget a bit in order for me to keep using it.
Fast forward five years: I’m still using Arbonne and I’m still loving it.
Over the years, I’ve gotten many compliments on how my skin “glows” or that I look “10 years younger.” Some can’t believe I’m 40, with a 20-year old child in college – feels good, ladies! I will continue using this product unless something better comes along…
Funny story. Just before I discovered Arbonne, I was Christmas shopping at a large mall with my sister. A lady selling “Dead Sea” skin care at a mall kiosk sucked us into listening to her schpeil about the junk she was peddling (don’t ever let them get you in their chair – you will regret it).
Since I’m a pushover, the domineering saleswoman sat me down in her chair and looked me over. With unashamed bluntness, she told me how I had rosacea (which I don’t – I have broken capillaries – totally different things) and that my skin looked dull and aging. *tear* I could almost see my confidence fly out the window.
I must have the word “sucker” printed on my forehead, because I ended up spending over $100 on her so-called “Dead Sea” skin care junk. Surprise, surprise – it didn’t work.
While I no longer SELL Arbonne, I will always USE Arbonne. It’s the best thing that has ever happened to my face. When I did the business, I used to give out samples to people so that they could try it, but I don’t do that anymore. But I do still have a website! I don’t make any commissions unless I spend the monthly $150 – which I don’t. Who has that kind of money? So, this is not a sales pitch.
You cannot get their products without a consultant, but since I technically still hold a consultant account, you can purchase anything you need here: http://karenkornichuk.arbonne.com/. You’re welcome.
I sold Arbonne for about 2 years and know a lot about their products, so if you have any questions, please feel free to ask.
I’m always on the lookout for other great products that are cruelty free and free of harmful chemicals. Please share your favorite natural products with me below! And have any of you tried the natural beauty box subscriptions out there!?
Member of National Association
for Holistic Aromatherapy