Epicurean Emily is a blog by Emily Denise which covers natural beauty, holistic health, and functional nutrition topics.
Home 2018-01-17T04:12:32+00:00

2018 BEAUTY TRENDS

Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.

Although people have a lot of mixed feelings about trends, I think they’re such a fun way to try new things that you may not usually be comfortable with, particularly when it comes to beauty. I’m so excited to share not only my favorite 2018 Beauty Trends with you, but also all the green/natural/non-toxic products you’ll need to help you achieve these looks! Don’t forget to tell me which trend you’re dying to try below the post in the comment section!

Emily
See my favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and Shop Green Beauty Products to Get the Look

Skin Is In

Is the age of contour kits finally finished? Maybe, because in 2018, skin is IN. I’m not talking about the “no makeup” look, I’m talking about letting your imperfections become your assets by embracing every freckle, fine like, wrinkle, and blemish. Instead of focusing on our flaws, let’s focus on taking care of our skin by letting it breath. One of my favorite products I discovered last year was the Vapour Atmosphere Luminous Foundation, which is the perfect little something if you’re like me and are scared to go out completely bare-faced. I use Hynt Beauty Duet Concealer to “take the edge off” some of my blemishes, which would work well on its own if you have an even skin tone, but just a few spots you’d like to remove redness or darkness from. If skin’s the star of the show, let’s make sure we’re treating it well! I’ve been using this Lumion Oxygen Mist before applying my moisturizer and to refresh my skin throughout the day. The formula is great for nearly all skin types as it’s a jack of all trades- it cleanses the skin, fighting bacteria and signs of aging with HOCL (hypochlorous acid), it increases skin hydration with oxygen, and it revitalizes the skin and replenishes essential minerals with dead sea salts.

Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
See my favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and Shop Green Beauty Products to Get the Look

Glossier

Matte lips had their moment, but in 2018, our lips are once again “poppin'”. Shiny, hydrated lips pair well with the sheer skin trend, as gloss usually creates a more effortless and undone look. My favorite green beauty product to tackle this trend is the Fitglow Lip Colour Serums. They’re very comfortable to wear (not sticky at all), they plump your pout with vegan collagen and plant extracts, and overtime they improve your lips on a cellular level by smoothing lines and leaving lips super soft & moisturized. Another shine-inducing lippie is Nu Evolution’s lip gloss. Make sure that your lips are exfoliated and moisturized before trying this trend! I like Henné Organic’s Rose Diamonds Lip Exfoliator to ward off chapped, flaky lips!

Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
See my favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and Shop Green Beauty Products to Get the Look

MAD FOR MONOCHROME

If you want to rock bold color in 2018, the monochromatic trend makes it simpler than ever! Sweep one shade on your lids or simply try the trend with a bold lipstick- might I suggest Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year, “Ultra Violet”, as pictured above on Rihanna??? 100% Pure makes the best lipsticks– they’re creamy, super pigmented, comfortable, and long-lasting. They honestly perform better than any conventional matte lipstick you’ll find on the shelves at big box beauty retailers. Try out the Ultra Violet trend with their Cocoa Butter Matte Lipstick in “Tempest”, or if purple isn’t your thing, try some of my other bold favorites here, here, and here. For a dramatic eye look, check out NU Evolution’s Single Eye Shadows and Au Naturale’s Powder Eye Shadows.

Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
See my favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and Shop Green Beauty Products to Get the Look

Designer Liner

When it comes to liner in 2018, the bolder the better! I like the pigmentation and application of the ZuZu Luxe liquid eyeliner. Although I haven’t personally tried it, many people love the wear of 100% Pure’s Long Last Liquid Eyeliner. If you’re not into the graphic black liner look, try smudging out a colorful pencil, such as Au Naturale’s Swipe-On Essential Eye Pencil. I love the liner look on the model pictured left- how it’s more concentrated under the bottom lash-line, then transitions to a more faded look through the crease. Get creative!

Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
See my favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and Shop Green Beauty Products to Get the Look

All That Glitters is Gold

Two words. Gold. Glitter. Although sparkle comes in many shades, gold is definitely having its moment in 2018. And while you may not be comfortable with the idea of looking like a disco ball at the office, a girls’ night out or date night is the perfect opportunity to shimmer & shine. These Ritual de Filles Celestial Sphere Eye Soots are giving me all sorts of sparkly inspiration (I especially love the pink iridescent shade, Ara!) If you’re going for the gold, check out their Rare Light Luminizer in Anthelion, which can be applied anywhere, including in the inner corner of the eye- a very trendy placement of sparkle, as seen on the model in the far right photo. Please note that these Ritual de Fille products do contain Phenoxyethanol, an ingredient classified as an irritant according to EWG’s Skin Deep database. I’d recommend testing the products on a small, inconspicuous area on your body before applying to your face to avoid possible irritation. If you’re looking for a more subtle way to wear this trend in the daytime, I love 100% Pure’s Gemmed Luminizer in Rose Gold. Simply sweep on the high-points of your cheek-bones, down the bridge of your nose, and on your cupid’s bow for a touch of gold glint.

Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.
Emily of Green Beauty Blog Epicurean Emily shares her favorite 2018 Beauty Trends and non-toxic products to get the look.

FAVORITE FOOD BLOGS

Favorite Food Blogs

Making a big change in your health can feel very isolating. When I eliminated dairy and gluten from my already primarily vegetarian diet last year, I felt like no one would understand, much less be able to relate to the change that I was going through. But desperate times call for desperate measures, and when I got sick of eating the limited recipes in my elimination diet cleanse pamphlet provided by my naturopathic doctor, I took to Pinterest and Instagram to find the ladies who I now call my favorite food bloggers. We all deserve to be inspired and supported and even though the healthy community I’ve found calls the world wide web home, that doesn’t make it any less of a community than a local one. If you want to get serious about leading a healthy life or developing a consistent workout routine, or learning to cook and eat healthfully, my advice is this- find your tribe. Our modern society bombards us every day with convenient trash disguised as food, outdated dietary guidelines and inaccurate knowledge about nutrition, and misleading claims and advertisements within the food and health industries. If you don’t have someone, anyone, whether its a partner, roommate, friend, child, parent- whoever to hold you accountable and have your back, your health journey may take a few extra detours. If you don’t have anyone that’s willing to participate with you, then utilize the power of the internet to connect with others and find a group of people that can relate to your situation!

Below I’m sharing my two favorite food blogs, as well as some of my go-to inspirational Instagram accounts. Click on the blog name to be taken to the user’s blog and click their Instagram handle or the photo to be taken to their Instagram account so you can give ’em a follow! Let me know who most inspires you in your health journey in the comment section below!

Emily
Favorite Food Blogs
Favorite Food Blogs
Favorite Food Blogs

Where do I even begin??? Dana’s blog has been my biggest plant-based meal-planning resource. It’s where I turn when I’ve gotten an ingredient from my CSA at Funny Girl Farm that I’m not sure what to do with. It’s where I learned what aquafaba was and how to cook with it. And as a photographer, Minimalist Baker is one of the most inspiring food blogs out there- Dana even teaches an online food photography course! Although MB doesn’t label itself as a vegan or gluten-free food blog, the majority of it’s recipes are, including the ones in their cookbook, “Everyday Cooking”. And as you can guess from the name of the blog, they use minimal and repeated ingredients, making the recipes very cost effective once you’ve stocked up on the staples. Although it was difficult to only choose three, here are our favorite Minimalist Baker recipes that we’ve made over and over again:

Roasted Broccoli Sweet Potato Chickpea Salad – This is one of our favorite dinners by far. I’ve been trying to incorporate more vegetables into my meals, relying less on grains to make me feel full and this salad is packed with plant protein and goodness. Since it’s only two servings, we usually double it (so we have leftovers for lunch the next day) and we also like adding a sautéed green such as spinach or kale underneath all of the roasted ingredients. The only other modification I make it omitting the dill as I’m not a big fan.

1 Bowl Gluten-Free Banana Bread – I have dreams about this banana bread. It is just SO delicious. I try not to make it too often because it still has refined sugar, but it’s always gone within a day or two when I do. It’s also one of my favorite recipes to make for group gatherings. I’ve used both real eggs and flax eggs (vegan option) in this recipe and both have yielded good results.

5-Ingredient Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili – This recipe is a testament to the minimal ingredients found in MB’s recipes. A delicious, simple, and cost effective recipe made with just 5 ingredients and some spices you likely already have on hand yields about 6 warm & comforting plant-based servings. We love making this chili when we’re hosting people in the winter (there’s nothing better than a chili bar on a cold night!) and everyone always asks for the recipe.

Favorite Food Blogs
Favorite Food Blogs
Favorite Food Blogs

Alexa’s blog, Fooduzzi, was one of the first gluten-free & plant-based blogs I found, thanks to Pinterest. When I first discovered her site, what I liked most about it was that she had recreated so many vegan recipes for foods I thought I would miss, like a vegan copy-cat recipe for Panera Bread’s Broccoli Cheddar Soup. But after trying so many new recipes from lots of different blogs and accounts over the past year, I’ve realized that my favorite thing about Fooduzzi‘s recipes is that they’re consistently delicious. Whether it’s a new recipe she just posted or a reader favorite, they always yield a tasty result and are often added into my meal rotation. So rest assured- no matter what you try from her blog will be amazing, but these are the ones we have made the most often in the last year.

Sun Dried Tomato Vegan Meatballs – These may just be my favorite recipe of 2017. They’re super comforting and have loads of protein from the lentils- and even more when you serve them with Banza Chickpea Pasta, as I usually do. The meatballs require a little more time to prep as they have to set in the fridge for about an hour before cooking, but this meal comes together pretty quickly otherwise. Also note that the recipe calls for one cup of COOKED green lentils. I have made the mistake of adding one cup uncooked (yielding about 2 cups cooked) and they didn’t stay together. I usually use about 1/2 cup uncooked lentils for this recipe. Sun dried tomatoes are a bit obscure, but can be found at Trader Joe’s. If you buy jarred tomato sauce to serve with the meatballs, just make sure it’s sugar-free! I like Muir Glen’s sauces, which can be found at my local grocery store (Kroger) or on Amazon Fresh.

Cheez-It Roasted Chickpeas – These little guys are so tasty! I love doubling the recipe to make a big batch of ’em over the weekend for weeklong snacking. Chickpeas are very filling as they’re packed with plant protein, and the spices really do taste so similar to our favorite processed childhood cracker- the Cheez-It. Nutritional yeast, a great vegan source of essential vitamin B12, provides the cheesy flavor and can also be found at Trader Joe’s. And yes, it’s annoying, but peeling the skins off of the chickpeas will make them so much crispier. So turn on your current Netflix fave or listen to a podcast and get to peelin’!

Healthy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies – Possibly the first Fooduzzi recipe I tried, I was addicted to these cookies last winter. I would make a batch every week to eat for dessert after dinner because they kept so well.  They’re perfectly sweet with the help of some maple syrup and they have the perfect soft texture. I’ve never used cashew butter (always almond butter), but mine have always been yummy!

Foodies to Follow on Instagram

I love following Lee because she really exemplifies health in all different aspects of life- not just through her diet. You will hear her talk a lot about PCOS, a condition she was diagnosed with and has found a way to manage its symptoms through lifestyle changes. She’s a professional meal-prepper, an advocate for women’s health, a supporter of body intuition, and she makes a mean matcha latte. Her stories are not only entertaining, but also informative. I always feel like I’m learning something when I tune in.

Favorite Food Blogs
Favorite Food Blogs

Wu Haus by Alison Wu (@alison__wu)

Alison’s feed is uber aspirational. Everytime I plate I think, “What would Wu do???” Well-developed recipes using in-season produce, incredible eye for design and plating, and stunning photography/editing all equate to a beautifully cohesive feed. I enjoy watching Alison’s stories to learn about everything from yoga and mindfulness to diy bone broth and “elixirs”, or what I call, fancy lattes.

Many of you have responded so well to the cooking tutorials I’ve been doing on Stories, and I’ll be honest and say that I got the idea from watching Erin’s stories. I love seeing her whip up plant-based vegan cuisine for her family, including her baby girl, and she’s slowing teaching me to be less methodical and more experimental in the kitchen. Following her also makes me want to plan a trip to Vancouver ASAP- they have so many plant-based eateries popping up and Erin dishes about all of them!

Favorite Food Blogs
Favorite Food Blogs

Like Erin, I really enjoy watching Anna’s stories for cooking tutorials. She has a family of four, including 2 vegan sons, so it’s interesting to me to have a peek at her family’s meals. She’s also very mindful about making sure each meal has adequate vitamins and nutrients from plant sources.

Creator of #FreeTheDrip, Ali’s blog tagline says it all, “it’s ok guacamole, I’m extra too.” Her feed is part real food and part mermaid food, the latter very colorful and very extra with lots of drool-worthy nut butter drip action. I enjoy following her not only for her insane creations, but also because she’s hilarious and has witty, LOL-worthy captions and stories on the regular.

Favorite Food Blogs
Favorite Food Blogs

The First Mess by Laura Wright (@thefirstmess)

I’m a fairly new follower of Laura’s site. @erinireland recommended her cookbook in her stories, so I bought it and was blown away by how good the recipes looked! I would like to be more intentional about cooking in season, which is something I hope I can practice by creating the recipes in Laura’s book and on her blog.

Although Rachel has somewhat of a reputation as a dessert queen (she does have her own Eating Evolved Coconut Butter Cup flavor, after all), I really enjoy her savory vegan recipes, like this creamy squash pasta and these black bean falafels. She also shares lots of health & wellness tips, including natural beauty products, on her stories.

Favorite Food Blogs

WHY DIETS DON’T WORK + FIVE WAYS TO BUILD A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP WITH FOOD

Why Diets Don't Work

It’s January 5th and nearly a week into your diet. It’s 3 PM and you’ve been craving a chocolate chip cookie since 10 AM. Your portions are small so you eat lunch but it doesn’t satiate you. So here you are at work, in the afternoon slump still dreaming of that damn cookie. After work you head home and binge on everything in your pantry; salty, sweet, crunchy, chewy- doesn’t matter, you’re just STARVED and cramming all the snacks into your mouth! After your binge on the food (which you weren’t supposed to be eating because you’re on a diet) that makes you feel exhausted and bloated, you begin to feel the embarrassment and shame of cheating on your diet. I’ll “start fresh” tomorrow turns into next month, which turns into next year. And even though dieting never works for us, we keep going back to it when we want to start fresh, lose weight, or feel better.

I’m gonna let you in on a little secret… dieting doesn’t work. For anyone. Know why? Because we’re all human. No matter how skinny or overweight or fit or out of shape we are, we all have cravings. So instead of attempting the impossible task of trying to quiet those taste-buds, let’s acknowledge our cravings and listen to what our body is telling us. Instead of being mindful of what we eat for just one month out of the year and overindulging for the other 11 months, we need to commit to a healthy, long-term relationship with food that nourishes our bodies. Food’s purpose, as defined by dictionary.com, is to be “a nutritious substance that people eat or drink… in order to maintain life and growth”. If we begin to question whether what’s on our plates is 1. not only maintaining life but also promoting growth or 2. is  inhibiting our life and stunting our growth, we begin to see food differently. We make the choice to promote life & growth or inhibit it three times every single day. Now that I’ve shared why diets don’t work, here are five ways to cultivate a healthy relationship with food!

Rethink Your Portions

Forget food industry-endorsed USDA dietary guidelines and remember a simple ratio when preparing meals. To provide essential vitamins & minerals, your plate should be roughly:

° 50% vegetables

° 25% protein — organic grass-fed/pasture-raised meat and wild-caught fish & seafood for omnivores/ beans, lentils, & organic tofu for vegetarians & vegans

° 25% carbohydrates — from whole grains, oats, & brown rice

I also add like to add in some healthy fats, too, from sources like nut butter & avocados.

Stop Attaching Emotions to Food

Eating is possibly the most sensorial activity. Not only are all of our five senses engaged, but our surroundings and our company create the inherent experiences with which we associate food. The fact that we can do this is incredible. When I fondly recall my time spent studying abroad, many of my best memories involve food, like eating my weight in gelato at a GELATO FESTIVAL 😱 in Florence, Italy or making dumplings with Chinese university students in Shanghai. These were once in a lifetime experiences and we should all be able to enjoy life’s indulgences, especially when experiencing new cultures or on vacation. BUT we must say goodbye to more regular emotional eating habits. If you’re stressed, try meditation or a breath-work exercise instead of reaching for that bag of chips. If you normally grab a chocolate bar for comfort, make a warm cup of tea and take a relaxing bath instead. Using food as a coping mechanism is the easiest way to ruin your relationship with it and stunt your health journey.

Don’t Tempt Yourself

Much like that advice about surrounding yourself with people who lift you higher, you want to surround yourself with food that promotes good health. Keeping things that tempt you in close proximity is the biggest disservice you can do yourself during your health journey. After extended periods of time without foods I thought I could never live without (I once had a shirt that said, “Fries Before Guys” 🙈😂), I find that I no longer crave those foods, at least to the degree that I used to. But man, when I go home for the holidays and my parents’ pantry is stocked with Goldfish, Lucky Charms, and Famous Amos cookies, my carrots & hummus don’t look so appetizing anymore. Clean out your pantry, donate or trash what doesn’t support your health and invest a little more money in groceries that week to buy healthy snacking staples such as nuts, seeds, nut butters, protein bars (watch out for added sugars- I buy LÄRABAR & GoMacro Bars when traveling), hummus/salsa/pesto & veggies to eat between meals.

Be Prepared

Not gonna lie, I started singing the song from The Lion King after I typed that– Haha! 🤓 But in all seriousness, the #1 key to a healthy diet is preparation. If you don’t leave the house with a bag full of snacks and all the meals you’ll need for the day in tow, you will fail. Because when it comes down to being hungry or being healthy, we go into survival mode and “just eat something” to prevent starvation. We’ve all been there before. While being prepared is important, it’s not easy. It took a long time for me to become accustomed to preparing most of my meals from scratch. Even now I’ll have the occasional evening where I’ll spend a few hours in the kitchen between preparing, cooking and cleaning, which leaves very little time for my blog after working my day-job. There are lots of different ways you can be better prepared to promote your health on a daily basis. I don’t believe what I do to be the most practical approach by any means, but there are parts of it that are working well for me. For example, I make meal plans by the week and try to avoid grocery shopping more than once a week. I choose between 4 & 6 recipes I want to make for the upcoming week, make my shopping list, and go grocery shopping. Since cooking every night is time-consuming as it is, running to the store to pick up random ingredients leaves one less thing for me to have to do before I can start preparing dinner. Many people enjoy meal-prepping, where they spend a good chunk of the weekend cooking and preparing all the meals they need for the week. Lee from America is the meal-prepping queen and even though she eats the same ingredients throughout the week, she never eats the same meal. She’ll make bowls, tacos, salads, toasts, & smoothies all from the same 5-6 core ingredients. This approach isn’t for me because when I’m hungry, I don’t always feel inventive enough to switch up my meals and I don’t want to eat the same thing for four days in a row. But everyone is different. Another option would be to cook each evening, but prep what you can over the weekend, such as cooking grains & rice and/or chopping vegetables ahead of time to keep in the fridge until ready to cook. Once you accept that eating healthfully isn’t going to be as simple as going through the drive-thru, you just have to experiment to see which approach is best for you and which one uses your time the most efficiently.

Listen to Your Body

The concept of dieting has made us so disconnected from our bodies. We ignore their hunger cues and deprive them of foods that we enjoy. That’s why dieting isn’t sustainable and why it doesn’t work. We should always be listening to what our bodies have to say, whether that’s making a smoothie after dinner if you don’t feel full or removing foods from your diet that you don’t feel great after eating *FYI- that’s not always just junk food! Food sensitivities are a real thing, even with whole, healthy foods! I struggle with certain beans that make me feel bloated and gassy after eating them and I know people that can’t eat bananas because they make them feel tired and groggy. Although I haven’t done one, a lot of people swear by cleanses such as the Clean Program, in which you eliminate many common allergens from your diet for about a month, and then slowly re-introduce them one at a time when you’ve finished the cleanse to monitor how your body reacts. My biggest argument against dieting is that it usually involves going cold turkey on dessert, which is never ok! While sugar and dairy are present in most of our favorite desserts, it’s not hard to find or even make healthier alternatives to have on hand when your sweet tooth makes its appearance. Some of my go-to’s are Hu’s Chocolate Bars (my favorite flavors are the nut-butter filled ones), Cocomel’s Vegan Caramels, Eating Evolved Coconut Butter Cups,  Chia Pudding (super simple to prepare, filled with plant protein, and the flavor combinations are endless), Fooduzzi’s Oatmeal Raisin Cookies, Lee From America’s Coconut Fat Balls topped with nut or coconut butter, and sometimes after dinner a cup of tea or a golden milk latte will satisfy my sweet tooth. (I’ve been using this golden milk blend from Golde recently). Dessert should always be allowed if you wish to indulge.

That’s all, folks! I don’t mean to discourage the progress of your New Year’s Resolutions but if health is what we’re truly aiming for, we have to stop dieting and start feeding our bodies with whole, nutritious foods on a more permanent basis.

Emily

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Why Diets Don't Work
Why Diets Don't Work
Why Diets Don't Work
Why Diets Don't Work
Why Diets Don't Work
Why Diets Don't Work + Five Ways to Build a Healthy Relationship with Food
Why Diets Don't Work

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