Vegan Style: black on black on black

Haven't done this in a while - outfit post. In the meantime I've mostly been dressing like this or more casual. I'm trying to not wear sneakers to work every day and pretend I'm an adult who can wear real shoes. We'll see how long that lasts.

I wore this to: work, eat some soup, do some errands and walk around like an old man because I'm in pain from my personal trainer appointment yesterday

tent dress/American Apparel
leggings/Maggie's Organics
shoes/Cri de Coeur via Mooshoes



5 Sustainable Style Things I Did This Week

I recently started reading The Non-Consumer Advocate and she regularly posts Five Frugal Things posts, listing what she did to stay frugal. While that kind of minutiae first intrigues me (creepy voyeur!), reading it on a regular basis tires me out. However, I was thinking that it must be so helpful for her in keeping the focus on being frugal -- the actions of which are often not buying things. And I thought about that in relation to this blog. And how I feel like I post what I buy and end up with a shopping blog instead of what I intended -- a "thoughtful consumer" blog, which often means not buying something.

At any rate, I decided to bore you with my minutiae. At least for today.

5 Sustainable Style Things I Did This Week:

1) Made a list of the things I actually "need" --- booties, winter boots and winter socks

2) Slowly going through my closet to figure out what doesn't fit and what I won't use so I can find new homes for them and have an easier time finding what I will use

3) Planned a vegan ladies clothing swap for February

4) Held off looking for sweatshirt or sweater dresses from ethical companies online when I saw a blog feature some cozy-looking options -- either I will find one at Beacon's Closet or I won't

5) Cancel my Vegan Cuts Beauty Box subscription. I still have my Petit Vour subscription and I think that's enough for me

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^ last month's Vegan Cuts polish color - minus the glitter ^

And bonus, 6) Read this post about soy textiles.


November Petit Vour Beauty Box Review

My disclaimer for the November review is that I totally love Ashlee Piper from The Little Foxes -- and she curated the November Petit Vour box -- but I did try to keep that from tainting my opinions of this box. Pinky swear. But I'm giving you full disclosure. (I buy the box so there is no bias in terms of getting free stuff.)

pv nov

Beauty box

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Earthbody Skincare Dream Body Oil: I like this just fine as body oil. I typically use moisturizer but it's nice to upgrade in the winter months and I don't usually buy body oil so it's a "nice to have" for the season. It smells like sandalwood - like a lot of sandalwood.

French Girl Organics Tinted Balm: As you know, I frickin' love tinted lip balms in the red family. This lip balm had tint that was actually visible (it amazes me how often this isn't the case). It's a red/wine color with a bit of a metallic color to it. It covers like a standard lip balm (thinner than Crazy Rumors but not anywhere near as thick as Soothing Touch vegan balms). It's a good match for Hurraw's tinted red balm with this being a darker shade.

LA Fresh Waterproof Makeup Remover: (Other people's boxes had a Caru Rose Facial Serum) Uhmmm...I would have preferred the serum but you get what you get and you don't get upset. I've actually used these makeup wipes when I stayed in a hotel that provided them and I liked them. And I was super excited to see a hotel provide a vegan product.

Au Naturale Concealer and Cream Eye Shadow: The concealer didn't do me any great favors, which is a shame because I've been looking for a good vegan concealer now that my ancient tube of Revlon died. (I've also tried e.l.f. and Pacifica and find them too thin.) But this one was too white and chalky on me...and I"m pretty pale. The cream eye shadow, however, was a nice sparkly gold and I wore it to a fundraising gala and thought it was perfect. Not too overdone on the sparkle but just enough to feel like I was wearing something. I used it with my regular black liner and mascara (primed with loose facial powder) and it worked out well for the evening.

Overview: My favorites were the French Girl Organics tinted balm and the Au Naturale gold cream eye shadow. I can see buying the tinted balm but probably won't need more of the gold cream eye shadow beyond what I already have. The body oil is totally a nice-to-have that will get used. The concealer was not so great for me and the makeup remover wipes are a nice-to-have if I can remember I actually have them.


Out with the Horse; In with the Goat...or Sheep?

2014. Year of the Horse. Bad luck. I'm not sure what to blame it on but the previous 12 months really really sucked. It started off with putting my 15 year-old cat to sleep on New Year's Eve of 2013. Then getting 2 flus thanks to traveling for family holiday and work stuff, which eventually kicked off horrible health issues, rendering me pretty helpless in even daily life.  [Apparently I had post-flu idiopathic gastroparesis, which took 4 months to fully manifest and then took 6 months to gradually fix with little help from western medicine interventions. Turns out I was lucky - it can stick around for up to 3 years, if resolved at all.]  I'm glad to be done with 2014 and I'm glad to almost be done with Year of the Horse.  I know that seems arbitrary but I feel like I need some closure so I'll take it where I can get it.

What do I plan to do in the Year of the Goat? Back in 2014, I came up with 12 ethical fashion goals for myself and only touched on 6 of them so far. I would like to hit all of them so I will just continue them for 2015 (without attaching them to any month). I'm also planning on finishing the 20 Days of Sustainable Style prompts in January...I swear. The holidays sort of took over but I have been doing some continuous Day 4 work, which was about culling your wardrobe.

goat barn, Farm Sanctuary

Why is Day 4 taking me so long? I eventually realized that I had culled my wardrobe based on my old size (culling what I no longer wanted) and not based on what actually fit.  Thanks to being gravely ill, I went down to 98 pounds and then up another 22 pounds, at least 10 pounds over my heaviest. I expected get back to my regular weight when my metabolism kicked back in, but it still hasn't happened. I've finally come to terms with needing to cull my wardrobe for things that fit now. I can save what I hope to fit into and check into it 6 months from now. (I really thought I'd be back to my old "normal" by now but I gave myself runner's knee and haven't been able to run in a while.) So I stalled because I thought I would be back to "normal" -- and it took me a long time to realize that it's entirely possible that my new size might be "normal" or at least it will be my "normal" for some time longer. Now I just have to go through everything again.

What did being sick teach me about how I consume? When I was really sick, I didn't buy anything because I couldn't even leave the house unescorted. Then when I was a different size, I needed things and I didn't have the time to look through resale shops constantly to cobble together a new wardrobe so I bought a lot of new stuff. And now I'm finally at a point where I can take the time and energy to look through resale shops again. That made me realize how you need to be privileged with time and energy to shop that way (especially when you need something specific). For the time-poor or chronic pain- or fatigue-havers, you're probably not able to opt-in to shopping that way.


Still alive

As promised, the majority of my extra time is going towards a little tabby cat named Simone.  She's pretty cool. We can't keep her though because she hates other cats so we're working on moving her to a foster who will not have other cats and eventually to a home of her very own.  My cats will be so relieved to get her out of our apartment.

I'm still on Day 4 of the Sustainable Style Challenge, and hopefully I'll be picking that up again this weekend. A lot of "off topic" life stuff has been happening so my attention really hasn't been here.  It's been...everywhere else.

Here's a random assortment of half-Instagrammed (75% Instagrammed?) photos until I can actually start doing the Sustainability Challenge again.  Basically, in short, I'm not dead. Also, cat.

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^ American Apparel tent dress & Clyde's Rebirth necklace ^
(also, Pacifica's Firebird Devocean lipstick)

Outfit Simone
^ American Apparel sweater, Etsy necklace, Simone kitten ^

^ thrift vest & scarf, Etsy shirt, Simone kitten ^

^ Pacifica Amethyst Castle 7-free nail polish (meh) & Great Frog NYC ring ^

^ Runs in Rows Mata Traders dress & Vera Meat necklace ^

^ Simone! ^


November Vegan Cuts Beauty Box Review

I am behind on my 20 Day Sustainable Fashion Challenge because now the instructions are to actually do stuff instead of just think stuff.  So, I'll be doing my challenge chores over the weekend and will have some updates on Monday.  In the meantime, here is my Vegan Cuts Beauty Box review for November.  I buy the box - I don't accept it free - so I don't feel like I have to blow smoke up anyone's booty over it. These are my honest opinions.

Vcbb November

Left to Right:

The All Natural Face Black Kohl Eyeliner: I don't use kohl liner because I find it smears pretty easily.  This goes on hella black though, so that is pretty cool. It's like putting your eyeliner on with a Sharpie (which I enjoy). However, like all other kohls, it just melts into your face and you look like you've been out partying all night after a few hours. I am planning on using this as a base and then using liquid liner over it for when I want to get all sorts of Cleopatra. I figure that will help it from melting all over my face.

Evolv Shampoo: I didn't even try this. And I probably won't try it in the next few months. I usually take all the shampoo and conditioner bottles from beauty boxes and shove them in my travel kit drawer. I find them one of the most boring things to try in beauty boxes so I'm sure this is shampoo and it works like shampoo but I cannot confirm or deny.

Mullein & Sparrow vegan tinted lip & cheek stain:  I was really excited by this one because I love tinted balm and cheek tint.  I tried this on my lips first and there is no color at all.  Nothing. Furthermore, it's a little firmer than Rosebud (petroleum) salve but it's got the same shiny greasiness.  I would never put this on my cheeks unless I wanted to break out like Rik from The Young Ones.  Such a bummer - I used Mullein & Sparrow's dry shampoo and liked it so my hopes were high for this one.  * sad trombone * I will use this as (clear) lip balm.

La Mav Serum: This is a nighttime serum. I like getting serums, especially during the winter months. When I'm done with the argan oil I'm using (also a beauty box item), I'll start using this.  I've tried it once on my eyes before bedtime and, you know, it just seemed like using oil as a moisturizer. Maybe once I use it regularly I'll notice something more magickal but I'm not holding my breath. It will help keep my skin moisturized though, at least.

Demes Butter Me Up (tangerine vanilla):  Okay, I really liked this one. I need moisturizer to live in the winter like regular people need water. Essential life force. This is a little (shiny) greasy but it absorbs okay and it smells delicious. It comes in this little paper tube, which I like in theory but then I realized I can't really shove it in my bag because the damn cap falls off and then it's like having a moisturizer push-pop in your bag or pocket. This will be an in-house use item only.

There was also a Shorganics soap I forgot to even photograph. I consider beauty box soap in the same category as beauty box shampoo - I'm sure it works like soap and I'll use it one day but I'm not really interested it it.


Day 3 - Getting Dressed in the Morning

Day 3's question was:

When you get dressed in the morning, how do you usually feel? Do you have trouble deciding what to wear? Do you constantly feel like you have wardrobe full of clothes but nothing to wear? Are you are creature of habit, preferring to wear the same few outfits each week? Do you like to wear something different every day of the month?

And my answer is:

I like to have no-brainer uniforms to throw on. I don't like to think about it.

What I usually actually feel is overwhelmed by what fits with what. Not just which shirt "goes" with which skirt but remembering the different lengths of my tops and what needs to be tucked in or what's big enough to go over jeans, etc.

^ top & leggings/American Apparel ^
^ shoes/Keep Company Ramos black waxed ^
^ bag/Cri de Coeur ^
^ brooch/vintage ^

Outfit brooch

This has improved slightly when I gained some weight and bought a bunch of American Apparel babydoll and tent dresses at one time because I can really easily throw one of those on over black leggings and call it a day. I want to say that's the way I always want it to be but I can feel myself getting bored with it already. I wonder if I need more of those kinds of outfits (or a list of possible outfits) or if I just need to find ways to stop myself from being bored with it.

Deep down I know I don't want to have to think about getting dressed in the mornings so I'm wondering if a good solution is:  having a list of easy "uniform" outfits with accessories being a variable so it's really easy but with enough different accessories, I don't get bored.