Nic of OrgaNic Obsessions (clever name, eh?) was gracious enough to let me interview her for this week’s 20 Questions. Having started “going green” since 2012, she gives her insight on how it has given her new knowledge and made her more aware about what she puts on her body. Also, she will spark your new addiction to prickly pear seed oil.
1. If you had to choose one word to describe yourself, what would it be?
Wow, this is a hard question! And, it’s the first one! I can be quite different depending on whether you meet me privately or proffesionally…but a word that would describe me in both is detail-oriented. I find details quite quickly and it’s something that I instinctively look in most things that I do.
2.How would you define the word ‘perfect’?
You ask tough questions Megan! 😉 I think that I would define “perfect” as anything or anyone that hasn’t tried to be perfect but just is due to its natural state of being. Anything that is too contrived misses the point in my opinion and detracts from real perfection.
3. What is your biggest beauty tip?
Cleanse, cleanse, cleanse! In my opinion, no matter what products you use, they won’t be beneficial to your skin unless you cleanse properly.
4. What made you decide to go green?
There wasn’t a defining factor to be honest (sorry to disappoint!) but I do owe going green to my sister as she was the one who recommended I try Kora Organics two years ago which marked the beginning of my green journey.
5. What has been the hardest part about making the switch?
I can’t say that anything has been too hard really…I’ve been very fortunate to have found an online Eco store catering to most of my needs and since I wasn’t into skincare much before going green (hard to believe now!) the whole transition if you will, has been quite smooth and painless. I could start with a clean slate on both the skincare and make-up front since I didn’t own many products to begin with.
6. What have you learned through the process?
I’ve learned to do my research and not just take things at face value. By this I mainly mean ingredients as many companies out there are just interested in the bottom line and not so much in consumer safety.
And the companies I refer to here are not the small, artisan buisnesses many of us love and support, but the bigger ones who purport to be natural but in truth, aren’t.
Always do your homework, not only to see whether the ingredients used are natural/organic, but also to make sure you’re not buying anything that may potentionally cause your skin to react.
I, for example, have found that I prefer oils higher in linoleic acid, such as prickly pear seed oil, as opposed to oleic acid, like avocado or apricot kernel oil. (Minimalistic Beauty has a great post entitled, “Oils Specifically For Acne-Prone Skin” for more information about linoleic vs. oleic acid.)
This is something I never would have learned if I hadn’t started my green journey. Lino what? I also seem to react to products heavy in rose, so I try to steer clear.
I’ve also learned so much more about what ingredients do what and what I should be looking out for to keep my skin happy.
It’s a never ending journey of knowledge and there’s still so much I don’t know!
And I love that. I’ve gotten to know my skin type better as well, going from the mistaken belief that I’m more oily-prone to realising that I’m combo/sensitive. Which also meant that I was using the wrong type of products until I was 29!
Another important lesson I’m learning is supporting the kind of buisness I can stand for and be proud of, knowing that my money is contributing to a better society through companies that source ethically and sustainably.
We consumers can and do help make a difference depending on where we decide to shop and I really do believe that the green beauty industry will only go from strength to strength with increased consumer awareness. It’s inevitable.
7. What are some of your favorite green beauty finds?
This is a really hard one! Since I’m being asked this now I would have to say prickly pear seed oil and Pai’s Instant Calming serum. For those with sensitive, finnicky skin, this is a Godsend and it has firmly become a staple in Nic’s favourites. Another favourite I mentioned just below! Oh and pretty much masks in a their glory, a girl can never have too many masks.
8. What was the hardest product to replace?
The one product I thought would be hard for me to switch recently was perfume, but Leahlani Skincare took care of that by creating the most precious scent in their Kauai Orchid perfume oil. Literally, a jasmine bush in a bottle. Need I say more? (Check out Nic’s review of the brand here and the perfume oil here and the perfume oil here.)
9. How has this journey changed your overall health?
I can’t say that I’ve noticed a drastic change in my overall health…I am more conscious about what I put on and into my body and I guess I’m more acutely aware of when a substance doesn’t interact well with my body or skin. My overall awareness has been heightened!
10. How would you recommend getting started to non-toxic newbies?
I would say start small. Don’t overhaul your skincare routine all at once as that would not only be very costly but also anxiety-inducing as there are so many options out there!
Choose one product to phase out, do your research on the green alternatives that are available and read what other bloggers have to say about a certain product or ingredient.
Obviously, it can get subjective as many reviews are naturaly based on our own experiences, but if you can find bloggers with similar skin types, then it does help guide you, and gives you an idea of whether a product will suit your or not.
11. What is your favorite ingredient?
Hands down prickly pear seed oil. I was recently introduced to this and I have fallen in love. Hard. My skin positively adores this oil and it’s really been a life saver ever since the temperatures dropped here in Sweden. I wake up with skin that is calm, soft and hydrated. And what’s it super high in? Yep, linoleic acid.
No other oil that I’ve used to date has given the same results so needless to say I will always endeavor to have this oil on hand. I say endeavor as naturally it has to be one of the most expensive oils out there. Trust a Capricorn to choose the priciest one.
12. What is a quote you live by?
This too shall pass.
In negative situations, this is most useful to remember to avoid thinking the world is going to go under due to failing an exam/arriving late to a very important meeting/a flat tire/seeing a cockroach on the doorframe you’re about to pass under. You will survive.
In positive situations, I like to remind myself to be grateful of the moment, helping me to fully experience the present instead of looking to what “better” things the future may hold.
13. If you could only leave the house with one product, what would it be?
14. Where do you see yourself ten years from now?
In an English-speaking country working with organic/natural skincare. With a kid or two and a 14 year old Saskia (my little princess, a Yorkie-Bichon mix)! Wow, she’ll be a little old lady. 😉
15. What is one piece of advice you’d tell your 13-year old self?
Take your time. Don’t hurry and worry so much. And such a cliché, but listen to your heart. Don’t get caught up in other people’s perception of you.
16. If you were able to read minds, would you? Why or why not?
I would. I think it would force us to be less fake towards each other, even though I’m sure it would also cause quite a bit of friction. I guess I’m rooting for more honesty in this world.
17. What is the last thing you Googled?
Star sign compatibility! I’m such a sucker for anything that has to do with astrology!
18. What is the most difficult part about blogging?
Making sure I blog once a month! I really admire those who post several times a week, I don’t know how they do it! I have a hard enough time trying to get my monthly post in sometimes, not for a lack of content, but for a hundred other things I need to get done!
19. What is your favorite part about it?
The people I meet on this journey. It’s been absolutely amazing to think that I only started blogging back in February of this year and during this time I’ve gotten to know some of the warmest, kindest, funniest and smartest guys and gals I’ve ever had the privelege of getting to know and nothing beats that. Some of them I feel I have known my whole life…and I feel very lucky to be a part of this supportive green beauty community.
20. How do you stay positive?
I snuggle with my dog, haha! Joke aside, she does help keep me happy and I definitely get a lot of energy and love from her (she probably finds me annoying most of the time with my smothering love, haha).
I don’t know where I get it from, but I always feel hopeful…life’s thrown me a few curveballs but because of them, I always know that things do get better.
It’s never always great, but it’s never always horrible either. This too shall pass remember! Knowing that gives me strength to be positive and hopeful. Just like anyone else, I need a good, long cry once in a while, but once it’s out of the way, there’s no stopping my positivity! It also helps living with a guy who’s mantra is, “don’t worry, be happy”!