Let’s Get Cheeky


Choosing the correct color of blush is vital to natural looking makeup. If you choose the wrong color for you, you may end up looking washed out or overdone. The right shade will give your face a healthy, vibrant glow.


The first step in choosing the right blush is to determine your skin tone. Are you warm or cool? Read my article “How To Choose The Correct Shade of Foundation” for detailed information on how to identify skin tone.

Once you know your skin tone, you can begin to refine your color selections.

Warm toned skin looks more natural in warmer colors with golden undertones like peaches, apricots, light golden browns and even pinky-peaches.

Cool toned skin gets a natural glow from pinks, roses and light mauves.

Here are some examples of warm and cool shades:

Warm Shades Herbs of Grace Warm Blush Colors Cool Shades Herbs of Grace Cool Blush Colors
  • Apricot
  • Peach
  • Bronze
  • Copper
  • Brown
  • Apricot
  • Peach
  • Azalea
  • Wild Ginger
  • Cocoa
  • Cinnamon
  • Mahogany
  • Coral Bell
  • Desert Poppy
  • Amber Lily
  • Fringecup
  • Brown Bell
  • Chocolate Lily
  • Pink
  • Rose
  • Purple
  • Burgundy
  • Pink Carnation
  • Rose Petal
  • Primrose
  • Lavender Mist
  • Huckleberry
  • Dark Plum
  • Tulip
  • Raspberry
  • Alkanet
  • Orchid
  • Calypso
  • Mulberry

Herbs of Grace Product Recommendation: Blush Colors

Also take into consideration the lightness of your skin. Light skin needs a light shade, or can appear overly made up. Similarly, light blush colors can disappear on darker skin tones, so darker shades like burgundy or berry work well for them.

One more tip: Make sure your cheek and lip shades are in the same color family for a more natural, harmonious look.

Ideally, your blush shade should match the color of the apples of your cheeks when they are flushed. Observe the color of your cheeks after you’ve exercised and you will know which shade you’re after.

What is your favorite blush shade?



New Foundation Shade!


You may recall that last month we held a contest to decide on the name of our new foundation shade. The winning entry, sent in by Maria, was Linden.



Linden is now available on the website in both full and tester sizes. See HerbsofGrace.com for more information and a description of our newest foundation shade, Linden!



By customer request, I have decided to create a new foundation shade. It is not often anymore that I get a chance to create new shades, so in celebration, I am having a contest to pick a name for the new foundation….


Here is a shot of the new foundation shade. It is designed to match light neutral skin tones. It is warmer than Avena, cooler than Butternut and lighter than Wheat.

Here are the rules of the contest:


*The name must be a plant name.

*The plant must be a similar color to the foundation shade.

*You must post your name contest entry in the comment section below or on our FaceBook page.

*One entry per person.

*The contest will run from Saturday, January 22, 2011, until Saturday, January 29, 2011.

*We will announce the winner in our February newsletter. If you are not yet subscribed, you can do so here.

*The winner will receive a free product of their choice from Herbs of Grace Natural Look Mineral Makeup.


Good luck and let the naming begin!

Holiday Eyes

A short how-to video describing how to achieve a fabulous, all natural, holiday look using Herbs of Grace Natural Look Mineral Makeup.

I’ve put together a short how-to video for you to achieve a fabulous holiday look this season using Natural Look Mineral Makeup™ Queen’s Cup, Cinnamon and Goldflower.

Take a look and let me know what you think.

YouTube Preview Image

What are your favorite holiday looks?

Why I am no Longer a Signer of The Compact For Safe Cosmetics


Several years ago, I heard about an organization called the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics. They had a website containing a list of companies that were committed to making cosmetics that are safe. Since the reason that I created my mineral makeup line in the first place was exactly that – I signed up immediately. In fact, I believe I was one of the first hundred or so companies to sign up.
You see, I had been making personal care products like soaps, massage oils and lotions for years, using only pure, clean, natural and safe ingredients. I spent much of my time researching ingredients to make sure that my products contained the safest ingredients available. My clientele had been asking me for years to create a natural, safe makeup line. They wanted more choices than just the big brand names they found at the drugstore. They wanted to be able to come to the Farmer’s Market and buy safe products from companies they knew and trusted. After years of research and development, I debuted my mineral makeup cosmetics – Natural Look Mineral Makeup – in 2003 to an amazing response.
So, signing the Compact for Safe Cosmetics seemed like a no-brainer. I was happy to see that there was an organization devoted to such a wonderful and useful purpose and I wanted to be part of it. I also got quite a bit of business from people who found my company from seeing my name on the list, which was an added bonus.
After signing the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, I received numerous emails from the Campaign asking me to upload all my products and ingredients into a database they were creating in partnership with the Environmental working Group (EWG) called the Skin Deep Database. The process of uploading to the database, as they explained it, seemed long and tedious, and since I have around 65 different products in my line, the chore seemed to get pushed to the bottom of the list every day. There was also this nagging doubt in the back of my mind that kept telling me to just hold off and see where this all was going. My intuition has always been very strong, so I decided to just hang back and wait to upload my information into the database until I felt completely comfortable with it.
Over the next 2 years I continued to receive form letters from the Campaign reminding all signers of the Compact for Safe Cosmetics to upload their information into the Skin Deep Database. These emails began to get increasingly suspicious. They started threatening their signers with a tier-based ranking system (you were green tier if you had all your products and ingredients in the database by a certain date, gray tier if you had only a certain percentage, red if you were “out of compliance”) to bully their signing membership into compliance with their alliance with the EWG and the Skin Deep Database. They also later instituted another tier-based ranking system according to member status (Gold member, Full member or Associate member, depending on how much safety data you were able to submit on the ingredients you used in your products.) Mind you, none of these requirements were made known to the companies when signing the Compact for Safe Cosmetics. This “compliance” was forced upon the companies after signing. To make this point very clear – compliance does not mean maintaining the commitment to making safe cosmetics, it means compliance with their push to get everyone to input their data into the database.
I also started hearing mumblings about federal legislation regarding making cosmetics safer for consumers. I received an email from the Campaign in 2008 stating that they were crafting a set of policy recommendations to protect consumers and support small businesses that are making safe cosmetic products. They had a short survey that Signers could fill out to give their input. There was a question on the survey asking how the federal government could support small businesses making safe cosmetics, so it all seemed on the up an up until I found out, through a small cosmetics trade group that I am a member of, that the Campaign had been working with legislators for 6 months prior to the survey and that several of the included policy recommendations would decimate small cosmetics companies. It appeared that the show of support for their Compact Signers was just a rouse to keep us believing that they were actually working for our side. As Compact Signers, we were never again asked for input on any of their policy recommendations, nor did we receive any information from them regarding what their recommendations actually were!
At the same time this was all taking place, I began to look a little more closely at the Skin Deep Database itself. I was not impressed with what I found. Since Kayla Fioravanti from Essential Wholesale has a beautifully articulated guest blogpost from Dene Godfrey regarding most of the problems with the Database here, I won’t go into detail. Suffice it to say, their ranking system is skewed and their science is biased and flawed.
As the debate about the current proposed legislation (the Safe Cosmetics Act of 2010) started heating up, I realized that the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics and the EWG are using their membership of over 1000 companies as “proof” that small cosmetic companies are behind the bill.
I decided I needed to cut all ties with the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, the Skin Deep Database and the EWG. The politics involved with these groups have proven to be underhanded and non-transparent. There is a lot of money behind these groups and they have a lot of lobbying power for big business on Capitol Hill. But they do not represent the small companies and consumers that they claim they are trying to protect. I asked for my company to be removed from the Compact for Safe Cosmetics, effective immediately. It took awhile, but finally, as of last week, Herbs of Grace, Inc is no longer listed as a Compact Signer. Many other companies trying to remove themselves from the Compact have had their own difficulties as mentioned here.
I want to be clear that this does not in any way, shape or form impact our commitment to making pure, green, safe and natural cosmetics. That has been our goal from the beginning and it will continue to be so.
If you want to learn more about the Safe Cosmetics Act and how it will impact not only the small cosmetic industry, but consumers of safe cosmetics as well, please read my blog post here. Be sure to read the links provided as they contain vital information on what the law actually says and what that means for us all.
And, finally, please show your support for small businesses like ours and for your continued ability to choose to use safe and natural cosmetics by signing the petition an contacting your legislators.

10 Reasons To Use Herbs of Grace Natural Look Mineral Makeup By Vanessa Nixon Klein, Owner, Herbs of Grace

1. We use no cheap fillers like talc, which has known health risks.
2. We do not use Ferric Ferrocyanide, which is a controversial toxic substance or Bismuth Oxychloride, which can be irritating to the skin.
3. Our products are cruelty free. We never use the ingredient carmine, which comes from a variety of beetle and is found as a colorant in many cosmetics.
4. Mineral makeup has natural sunscreen properties.
5. Mineral makeup is actually good for your skin. It is oil free and non-comedigenic. It also can help soothe irritation and redness.
6. We never use synthetic fragrances, dyes or preservatives in our products.
7. Mineral makeup Powder/Foundation can be used as concealer, foundation, powder and sunscreen all in one!
8. Mineral makeup provides exceptional, long lasting coverage with a very silky, lightweight feel.
9. Mineral makeup is very water resistant.
10. Mineral makeup is extremely versatile and adaptable. It can be applied wet or dry, with a brush or sponge, with sheer to opaque coverage depending on your chosen application method.
11. BONUS – We never have and never will use micronized minerals.

Let your natural beauty shine through with
Natural Look Mineral Makeup™, by Herbs of Grace, Inc.

For further reading, please see Herbs of Grace Natural Beauty Articles, Herbs of Grace Aromatherapy Articles, or Herbs of Grace Recommended Reading.

©2003 – 2004, Herbs of Grace, Inc.
This article is copyrighted by Vanessa Nixon Klein, the proprietor of Herbs of Grace, who has a background in medicinal herbalism. If you would like to reprint this article, either online or in print, please contact us for permission.

The Benefits of Using Natural Look Mineral Makeup by Herbs of Grace, Inc. By Vanessa Nixon Klein, Owner, Herbs of Grace, Inc.

Most commercial makeup is full of unnecessary and sometimes harmful ingredients such as artificial dyes and fragrances, synthetic preservatives, oils, and fillers. All of these things can wreak havoc on the delicate skin of your face. What’s the alternative for those of us who are very particular about what we put in and on our bodies? All- natural mineral makeup.

Mineral makeup is made from naturally occurring minerals such as titanium dioxide, mica powder and iron oxides that have been used in cosmetics for thousands of years. Titanium dioxide is naturally anti-inflammatory and a natural sunscreen. It is perfect for acne or rosacea prone skin, inflammatory skin conditions, and post-surgical or post- chemical peel skin as the natural minerals can help reduce irritation and redness. Mineral make-up is ideal for sensitive skin and is suitable for all skin types.

Herbs of Grace Natural Look Mineral Makeup is fragrance free, oil free, cruelty free and contains no fillers or synthetic dyes or preservatives. And, because it is a powder, there is no risk of spoilage or oxidization. It is very water resistant and much more forgiving than most commercial make-up in that each shade can be used on a wide variety of skin tones. This is because the natural minerals reflect light instead of absorbing it the way other make-up does. This also results in a more healthy, bright, radiant appearance.

Other mineral make-up companies sometimes use Ferric Ferrocyanide, which is a controversial toxic substance, Bismuth Oxychloride, which can be irritating to the skin, Carmine, which is crushed and extracted from a variety of beetle and cheap fillers such as talc, which has respiratory health risks. Be assured that Herbs of Grace never uses these ingredients and goes to great lengths to make sure all ingredients are pure, natural and of the highest quality.

Another wonderful benefit of using mineral cosmetics is that they can be applied wet or dry, with a brush or make-up sponge and can provide complete, lightweight coverage ranging from sheer to opaque depending on your application method.

This easy to use, long-lasting make-up not only provides a youthful, vibrant glow to your skin but it is extremely versatile. Herbs of Grace Natural Skin Mineral Make-up Powder/Foundation can be used as concealer, foundation, powder and sunscreen all in one. Designed to let your natural beauty shine through, this make-up is formulated in small batches to ensure quality and purity.

Herbs of Grace Natural Color Mineral Make-up shades can be used for a wide variety of uses. This versatile product may be used wet or dry as eyeshadow, eyeliner, brow liner, blush, bronzer, lipstick, lip liner or body shimmer. The colors are sheer and may be applied and combined in layers for an opaque effect. The pure, natural shades are formulated in small batches to compliment the skin, not hide it. You’ll love the radiant glow of your skin after using this make-up!

Let your natural beauty shine through with
Natural Look Mineral Makeup™, by Herbs of Grace, Inc.

For further reading, please see Herbs of Grace Natural Beauty Articles, Herbs of Grace Aromatherapy Articles, or Herbs of Grace Recommended Reading.

©2003 – 2004, Herbs of Grace, Inc.
This article is copyrighted by Vanessa Nixon Klein, the proprietor of Herbs of Grace, who has a background in medicinal herbalism. If you would like to reprint this article, either online or in print, please contact us for permission.

Mineral Makeup Application Tips By Vanessa Nixon Klein, Owner, Herbs of Grace

This article is intended not only to share application tips and techniques, but also to troubleshoot any potential problems you may have encountered when working with mineral makeup.

The first point that needs to be addressed is that mineral makeup is much different than most regular commercial makeup, and as such, it needs to be treated differently. One of the biggest differences in terms of application, is that you need much less mineral makeup to get the same coverage results as regular makeup. You may have already discovered this the first time you used mineral makeup. The key is to start with a very small amount and apply in very sheer layers until you reach the desired coverage. It is much easier to add layers than to take them off.

When using mineral makeup, it is best to start with a clean face. Using an all natural handmade soap or facial cleanser will get you off to a great start. Follow up with your favorite moisturizer or cream. It is important to make sure your moisturizer has been completely absorbed by the skin before applying mineral makeup.
Using Herbs of Grace Natural Look Mineral Makeup™ Powder/Foundation

Once your moisturizer has been absorbed, you can begin applying your makeup. Start with your chosen shade of Herbs of Grace Powder/Foundation. Tap a SMALL amount of powder into the cap of the container (this can be best accomplished before you remove the cap by turning the container upside down and tapping the bottom lightly) and swirl your Kabuki brush into it. If you get too much, tap off any excess or tap the bottom of the brush on a hard surface, such as the bathroom counter, so the powder gets distributed down into the bristles of the brush. Apply to the face with gentle downward strokes. If you have any blemishes that need covering, it is not necessary to use a separate concealer. Use a smaller brush to apply foundation to problem areas making sure to blend well.

If you prefer a liquid foundation, it is easy to convert Herbs of Grace Powder/Foundation to a liquid. Add a drop of water to the powder you’ve tapped into the lid of your container, and, using the flocked sponge, mix the water and powder to the consistency you desire. Apply to the face with the flocked sponge in a downward motion, blending well. You can add more water or powder until you reach the consistency that works best for you. Wipe any excess liquid from the lid before closing.

If you have very dry or flaky skin, you can use a small amount of your favorite Herbs of Grace moisturizer in place of the water to make a cream foundation.

Herbs of Grace natural Look Mineral Makeup™ Powder/Foundation can also be used to set your makeup after you’ve applied eyeshadow, blush and lipstick. Tap a very small amount of powder into the lid of your container, and as before, use your Kabuki brush to apply a very sheer layer of powder over your entire face and neck.

Alternatively, you can mist your face lightly with water or rosewater and after waiting a minute, use your flocked sponge to lightly go over your face in a downward motion. This not only helps to set your makeup, but also minimizes the appearance of large pores.

Using Herbs of Grace Natural Look Mineral Makeup™ Colors
You can choose any shade from the Herbs of Grace Colors palette for use as eyeshadow, eyeliner, blush, lipstick, lip liner, brow liner, bronzer, body shimmer or even nail polish! It is best to apply the colors in sheer layers to create anything from a soft healthy glow, to a more opaque evening look.

After you have chosen your desired Herbs of Grace Color, tap a small amount of powder into the container lid and use the fluff side of the Duo Angle/Fluff Brush to apply in light stokes on your eyelid. Use lighter shades for highlighting under your brow and medium shades for the lower part of your lid. Darker shades are perfect for the crease of your lid. If you have never used a Crease Brush before, you will be amazed at the ease with which it allows you to apply perfect color to the crease area of the eyelid. It is definitely a great addition to your makeup brush collection.

Choose a darker shade of Herbs of Grace Colors for lining the eye. You can achieve a smoky look by using the powder dry, applying it with the Eyeliner Brush as closely to the upper and/or lower lashes as possible and smudging or blending a little to create the desired look.

For a cleaner line, create a liquid by tapping some powder into the container lid and wetting the Eyeliner Brush. Mix the water on the brush with the powder until you achieve the desired consistency. Then line the eye as closely as possible to the lashes. Wipe any excess liquid from the lid before closing.

Again, tap a small amount of the chosen shade of Color into the lid and using the Blush Brush, apply in light strokes form the apple of the cheek outward along the cheekbone.

There are a couple of ways to apply Herbs of Grace Colors as lip liner and lipstick. To create a liquid liner, use the same technique used with the eyeliner above. Another effective technique is to first apply clear lip balm to the lips, such as Herbs of Grace Lip Balm, and then use the Lip Liner Brush to outline the lips with the dry powder from the lid of the container. This creates a nice creamy texture that feels very smooth on the lips.

Use the same techniques for filling in lip color as used with the lip liner.

Using your chosen shade of Color, tap a small amount of powder into the container lid and apply to brow with the angle side of the Duo Angle/Fluff Brush.

Using the Kabuki or Blush Brush, apply your chosen shade on any area of the body you want to look bronzed or shimmery.

Use clear nail polish and simply dip the nail polish brush into the desired Herbs of Grace Color and apply to nails. Herbs of Grace Colors can also be mixed into clear or colored nail polish to create different shades.

As you can see, Herbs of Grace Natural Look Mineral Makeup™ is very versatile and can be used in various ways with many techniques to enhance a beautiful, healthy, glowing appearance.

Let your natural beauty shine through with
Natural Look Mineral Makeup™, by Herbs of Grace, Inc.

For further reading, please see Herbs of Grace Natural Beauty Articles, Herbs of Grace Aromatherapy Articles, or Herbs of Grace Recommended Reading.

©2003 – 2004, Herbs of Grace.
This article is copyrighted by Vanessa Nixon Klein, the proprietor of Herbs of Grace, who has a background in medicinal herbalism. If you would like to reprint this article, either online or in print, please contact us for permission.

Aromatherapy for Pregnancy By Vanessa Nixon Klein, Owner, Herbs of Grace, Inc.

Aromatherapy is a natural, healing modality employing essential oils extracted from aromatic plant sources to treat and balance the body, mind and spirit. During pregnancy, there are many instances when aromatherapy can be an extremely beneficial and helpful option, while also being very easy to employ. In order to use essential oils safely during pregnancy a few extra safety guidelines must be followed.

Essential oils are extremely concentrated. They need to be diluted before use. A common dilution for aromatherapy blends during pregnancy is 2 % – which would equal approximately 10 drops essential oil to 1 ounce or 2T carrier oil. For an aromatherapy bath add 6-10 drops essential oil to the tub and mix well before getting in. 3-6 drops essential oil in a bowl of warm water wrung out in a washcloth works well for a compress. Use the same dilution in a bowl of steaming hot water for a steam inhalation.

There are many essential oils that should be avoided during pregnancy*. The following table contains oils that should be avoided during pregnancy* and oils that are recommended for use during pregnancy. See also the following table for specific uses of oils that are recommended during pregnancy.

Use of essential oils should be extremely limited or avoided during the first trimester of pregnancy, but has many wonderful uses in the last two trimesters and especially during labor.
Oils to avoid during pregnancy include:*
Clary sage (ok during labor)
Cypress (ok after 5 months)
Jasmine (ok during labor)
Rose (ok during labor)
Sweet marjoram

The following oils you can feel comfortable using during pregnancy. As always, use caution if you have allergies or a family history of allergies. If you think you may be allergic to an oil, do a patch test first. See also the next table for specific uses for each of these oils.
Good oils for pregnancy include:
Cypress (ok after 5 mos.)
Geranium (avoid in early pregnancy)
Tea Tree
Ylang Ylang

*Please note: Since it would be highly unethical to test on pregnant women, the list of essential oils to avoid during pregnancy is based on knowledge of the general properties of each essential oil. For obvious reasons, during pregnancy it is recommended to avoid essential oils which are known to thin the blood or cause cramping or contractions. Used under proper dilution, most of these oils should not cause any problems during a healthy pregnancy, but it is always best to err on the side of caution.

If you are currently pregnant and have been using any of the “to be avoided” essential oils but are not experiencing any bleeding or cramping, then there most likely is nothing wrong. However, we strongly encourage you to consult your doctor or midwife and discontinue use of the “to be avoided” essential oils. This information is provided “as is” — it cannot replace the personal care your doctor or midwife provides you and Herbs of Grace makes no medical claims for its products.

Aromatherapy Benefits for Pregnancy

Listed below are some of the benefits and therapeutic effects of the essential oils recommended for use during pregnancy. You can click on the essential oil name to search for Herbs of Grace products that are made with the oil (keeping mind that no medicinal claims are made for our products!).
Bergamot – Analgesic, antiseptic, antidepressant, uplifting, and refreshing. Helpful for cystitis during pregnancy.
Chamomile – Antiseptic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic. Soothes pain from muscular aches, headaches, toothaches and Indigestion.
Cypress (ok after 5 mos.) – Antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent and diuretic. Helpful for Varicose veins, hemorrhoids and swollen ankles.
Eucalyptus – Antiseptic, antibiotic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiviral. Helpful with respiratory congestion.
Frankincense – Antiseptic, astringent, sedative, warming
Geranium (ok after 3 mos.) – Antiseptic, antidepressant, astringent, refreshing, uplifting. Eases aching legs and is good for poor circulation.
Grapefruit – Astringent, digestive aid, lymphatic stimulant. Helps with Water retention.
Lavender – Antiseptic, antibiotic, analgesic, antidepressant, healing, Relaxing. Helps soothe aches and pains of pregnancy,encourages cell renewal and helps with fluid retention.
Lemon – Antiseptic, antibacterial, antifungal, astringent, stimulant, Tonic. Useful as an inhalant for morning sickness and in Massage for varicose veins.
Mandarin – Antiseptic, refreshing, tonic, mild relaxant. Can ease fluid retention in leg and ankle massages.
Neroli – Antiseptic, antidepressant, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory,Relaxing. Useful in pregnancy to promote healthy skin cell Regeneration and for easing nervous tension.
Patchouli – Antiseptic, antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, nerve sedative. Eases confusion, indecision and apathy.
Petitgrain – Antiseptic, antidepressant, sedative, refreshing, tonic. Helpful in dealing with pre or postpartum depression.
Rosewood – Antiseptic, sedative
Sandalwood – Antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, sedative. Helpful for cystitis during pregnancy.
Tangerine – Antispasmodic, lymphatic stimulant, calming, sedative. Helps to prevent stretch marks.
Tea Tree – Antibiotic, antiseptic, antifungal, antiviral, disinfectant. Can be used to treat thrush during pregnancy.
Ylang Ylang – Antiseptic, antidepressant, aphrodisiac, sedative, lowers blood Pressure. Restorative when overworked or tense.

For further reading, please see Herbs of Grace Natural Beauty Articles, Herbs of Grace Aromatherapy Articles, or Herbs of Grace Recommended Reading.

©2003 – 2004, Herbs of Grace.
This article is copyrighted by Vanessa Nixon Klein, the proprietor of Herbs of Grace, who has a background in medicinal herbalism. If you would like to reprint this article, either online or in print, please contact us for permission.