“Oh what a night!” That’s the song that keeps replaying in my head over the awesome green beauty event at Henri Bendel’s in NYC last night. Yes, indeed, oh what a night it was!

W3LLPEOPLE_Supernatural_SessionsThe event hosts were:

Also spotted at the shindig (here’s where I do some fun name dropping and got to meet such amazing people!):

henri bendel gang2- Kasey, Jackie, Ali

Green beauties (L to R): Kasey, Jackie, and Ali (Forgive the lousy quality. Dropped my camera one too many times.)

Uber-talented freelance makeup artist + green beauty and wellness coach, Rebecca Casciano; my bloggers in crime: Katie of The Green Product Junkie, Kasey at Plein Vanity, Jackie at Verde Versace, Stepha at Sparkle & Spice, and Moni at What’s for Dinner? (Do check out their blogs! You’re in for some treats!); future blogger and health consultant, Ali Bartelone; plus a pretty editor from Refinery29 (Sorry! Didn’t catch her name.)

Can you see why the energy in the room was full of good vibrations?!

I got some fantastic unsolicited testimonials from women who used many of the products already, so you can bet I was eager to try everything.

But first, Melisse led a brief Q & A with the panel of experts. Here are some bullet points that stood out for me (as in the ones that got scribbled down madly as they were talking).

Reasons for starting their lines:

  • Yarok: Mordechai’s hands reacted to the chemicals in conventional hair products, so he developed the line to combat the dangerous ingredients, while helping other professionals in the industry, as well as consumers.
  • W3LL People: Over the course of 17 years in the beauty industry, Shirley noticed that clients repeatedly asked what she was putting on their skin. She finally looked into it and was stunned by the toxic chemicals commonly used. She decided to take matters into her own hands and clean it all up, but also create formulas that would pass muster for makeup artists too.
  • One Love: Suzanne’s skin started breaking out after having children. As an attorney, these breakouts were humiliating. She tried every cream and nothing helped her. She began to research causes of inflammation and traced it to the emulsifying agents added to products. She formulated her products to be free of water (other than the mist), so that she would not have to use emulsifiers at all. Her products banish breakouts, redness, and ease symptoms of rosacea.

Advantages to their products & tips for using them:

  • Yarok: Antioxidants preserve the formulas, as opposed to chemical or synthetic preservatives that irritate skin. For organic products, you can layer more in the hair because they don’t contain alcohol, which can cause flakes or dryness, and add buildup.
  • W3LL People: If you have problematic skin, don’t keep covering it, merely adding layers of concealer to mask the issue. It’s important to rebalance skin when it’s out of balance, then choose the right makeup for your complexion. For blemish-prone or oily skin, a matte mineral makeup (all foundations are formulated with healing aloe) helps even out the skin and treat it at the same time. Always follow the less is more principle.
  • One Love: How to use the products is key to good results. Take a small amount of Skin Savior balm, warm between fingers, and press into skin. Same for the oil, pressing into damp, just-misted skin. Conventional moisturizers dry out the skin because the first ingredient is usually water. Not so with One Love’s concentrated formulas rich in vitamins and omega fatty acids to protect, nurture, and soothe.

Most important product to switch to green (Is this even a question?!):

  • Yarok: Anything that is close to the scalp like shampoo, conditioner, and hairspray because that sprays into the environment and is toxic to breathe.
  • W3LL People: Foundation
  • One Love: Moisturizer

Cosmetic shame (a.k.a. green cheat list):

  • Yarok: For many women (like Suzanne, sorry to snitch, but she divulged!), hair dyes remain an area where they still use conventional methods, so Mordechai created Organic Color System without ammonia and most toxic chemicals. While not totally glean*, it’s still waaay better than the alternative. (Found in select salons).
  • W3LL People: Waterproof eyeliner and mascara (until now!! So excited to spill below.)
  • One Love: Elizabeth realized that all the products she liked were natural so most of hers are clean, except lash extensions and the adhesive glue [GASP!]

After this fun rap session, guests indulged in makeovers starting with a full cleanse and hydration at the One Love station, cosmetic application thanks to a team for W3LL People, and hair revamping with Mordechai and his stylists. (Katie’s still disappointed that Sergey did not give me a mohawk so that I could impress my kids with my coolness factor. Ha! I think the fact that I called it a “coolness factor” shows you where I rank on that scale.) Meanwhile, I did love the sleek style that he DID end up giving me.

I must say that the big reveal of a soon-to-be-launched W3LL People mascara was super exciting. While I couldn’t test it out with the same applicator brush that comes with the product, I did try it and found the formula to be great: lengthening, volumizing, and all-around va-vooming.

Throwing hands up to my spending cuts now! I walked away with a trunk load (oops! Husband reads this too)—I mean small, chic, striped Bendel’s bag filled to the brim with goodies galore. If you must know, I splurged on One Love’s Active Moisture Time Release Mist (sounds divine, right? It is!); two eensy weensy** W3LL People sets that include a Narcissist foundation + concealer and brush, and an Urban Beauty Set with Universalist color stick, Nudist Colorbalm, and Hypnotist eye pencil (kohl-free so no lead in it); and Yarok’s Shampoo, Conditioner, Feed Your Roots Mousse, and Feed Your Ends Leave-in Conditioner.

Two favorite lines from the night:

James Walker pointed out that the myth that science + testing only exists in conventional formulas is just that—a myth. They found a way to marry the two and make it green. I fully agree! There was something decidedly trendy and modern about the brands. No one would categorize them or the guests who came as granola, crunchy, or nutty. Well, ok, most of us are a bit nutty but in a good way.

The other line came from Elizabeth Dehn to me that one day we won’t even be having the conversation about green products. Everything we use will be green, clean, fairly traded, and good for us and the environment.

Amen to that, Sista!

Thanks to each of you who made this event happen and for pulling it off so beautifully. For anyone who doesn’t believe how luxurious and effective green beauty can be, I invite you to see for yourself at the next event. You will be pleasantly surprised! XO

Photo credits: Courtesy of W3LL People and Well + Good NYC

* Glean = clean + green and should be a real word by now.

** The sets are lovely full-sizes. I tossed in the eensy weensy part so as not to startle Husband.

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