{eco boutique} 48 + sea: a fleet of female indie designers

i've been reading about the history of gift giving: a tradition as old as humanity itself. i love to think about the little tokens {and big ones too} of appreciation that have been shared throughout the centuries, a tangible expression of love + affection. 

i truly relish giving gifts. if i like you, then you've probably received a present from me. most likely, you've received a candle {not all candles all created equal} or perhaps a chocolaty treat {fair trade certified}. if i really like you, you've received a bar of soap as well {the kind that smell like you're holding an entire forest in the palms of your hands}. as a minimalist, i believe these tokens of affection can be wonderfully useful. 

enter jennifer meyer, eco entrepreneur + proprietress of 48 + sea, an online boutique focused on goods with purpose + beauty, made by female designers across america. jennifer's shop has a distinct + handsomely poetic point of view; each brand has been carefully vetted, so you know the jewelry, housewares + apothecary products are all made with respect to our planet + to people. all you have to do is click your way through to find charming goods that defy traditional design boundaries. this is 48 + sea: 

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bono, prolific musician + philanthropist, shrewd businessman + venture capitalist, once said, "shopping is politics." bono believed that revolution among active citizens began "in their kitchen. it's in their footsteps, in the choices they make to buy this and not that."

where do we go to invest in items that have a positive ripple effect on those who produce them?

if we traveled back in time, we would find breathtaking artisan-made goods being carefully crafted by skilled potters, carpenters + metal smiths. we might find these artworks with their strong provenance at craft bazaars or specialty shops. skip ahead to a time when people like you + me might have to travel far + wide to acquire such winsome pieces. or we might scramble from one website to another piecing together unique wares.

now back to the future: today we can find clever handcrafted goods + cool independent designs in one online boutique. brooklyn-based jennifer meyer has created a space, 

48 + sea, with simple + spare housewares, luxe bath products as well as light + airy jewelry, all in modern incarnations.

jennifer has invested her talents in 48 + sea a singular shop with a mix of elegant + subtle statement pieces. she loves the arresting imperfections of a wheel-thrown mug + plate or hand-dyed tea towels. she also loves aromatic candles that fill your home with soothing scents {think ginger + citrus or cucumber + wild mint}, transforming your space into one of peace + productivity.

i quickly fell in love with the soaps + candles, handmade jewelry + clutches as well as the natural beauty selection that jennifer has curated, including california organic beauty brand s/he studio + pennsylvania candle maker zoet bathlatier. but only order from 48 + sea if you like top notch customer service and goods with compelling diversity inspired by nature + made with love. 

until next time, stay green, dear hearts!

{eco beauty} 4 clean + cruelty-free lip balms: for buttery-soft lips

in putting together this post, i had a vivid memory come flooding back to me. years ago, i was excited to try my very first all-natural lip balm. it arrived via post in a monthly subscription box. tiny tube in hand, i swiped eagerly across my lips, ready for the magic healing to begin. 

it smelled delightful, and it certainly tasted good, but something seemed awry. upon further inspection, i realized i'd mistaken the travel-size deodorant bar for a lip moisturizer. as a deodorant, this product worked wonderfully. but as a lip balm, it was perhaps not the perfect texture for a silky soft pout. 

over the last four years i've tried many a green + clean lip balm: some were a touch gritty, others a bit clumpy, and some were pure bliss. the fours balms listed here are by far my favorites for their buttery soft texture + ultra hydrating qualities; vegan + handmade, all paraben free + sulfate free, petrol free + cruelty free. read on for balms that glide on just like butter: 

1/ mi me tangerine hydrating lip butter: for lasting shine + deep moisture, this balm, which comes in a svelte cylindrical tube, is my top pick. oh-so rejuvenating, with the perfect amount of sheen. ingredients include organic coconut oil, mango butter + avocado butter. the slender tube fits easily in jean pockets + small spaces {aka travel bags + clutches} without creating bulk. handmade in the u.s.a.

2/ the knarly whale: spiced caramel lip balm? don't mind if i do. the knarly whale strives to provide low-impact, minimal-ingredient bath + body products. soothe chapped lips + lock in moisture with these rad little balms. ingredients include candelilla wax, coconut oil, jojoba oil + mango butter. besides a product that delivers, i really dig the name. made from scratch in the u.s.a by a husband + wife team, with 10% of profits donated to a new charity each month. that's the way to do it!

3/ellovi: i love ellovi's no frills site. you'll find just two terrific + intensely hydrating products available to choose from: the body butter + the lip butter {i've tried each + thanked my lucky stars for the restorative effects of both}. created to disrupt the big beauty industry {conventional products filled with synthetic ingredients + tested on animals}, each ellovi product is made using only six wildly harvested ingredients "so pure you can eat them". nutritional ingredients include macadamia nut oil, coconut oil, marula nut oil + hemp seed oil. i'll have what she's having. made in the u.s.a.

4/ hurraw lip balm: extra thick, creamy + rich, hurraw's lip balms promise staying power, and indeed, they work all day to soothe dry, cracked lips. fair trade + organic ingredients include avocado oil, rosehip seed oil, meadowfoam seed oil + argan oil. the oval shaped tube is perfect for back pockets or backpacks. made in the u.s.a.

while all natural + clean beauty products are safe enough that you can absolutely glide your deodorant stick across your lips without getting sick, leave lip protection to the experts for shiny, happy lips. click on links above for full ingredient lists.

{don't forget the tip} when friends ask for recommendations for clean + cruelty-free products, i chat openly about parent companies. burt's bees was bought by clorox, a company that still tests on animals; aveda was bought by estee lauder, also a company that currently employs animal testing; and neutrogena is owned by johnson + johnson, a company that continues to use animal testing. hence, i love to support small + indie makers who source their ingredients responsibly + never test on animals.

here's a terrific list of brands that do NOT test on animals that you can find at your local drugstore + target. here's a list of companies that still test on animals. shop cruelty-free + help bring an end to animal testing, my friends.

until next time, stay green dear hearts!