Yes! A vegan beauty shop. I love it. I recently discovered Kind Beauty Collective which just launched in August.
Kind Beauty Collective, an online beauty boutique, sells all vegan and cruelty-free products that work. Owner and founder Alexis Ellen wouldn't have it any other way. As a professional makeup artist in the industry 10+ years and having worked on celebs like Fifth Harmony, she knows a thing or two about long lasting quality makeup. It's only sold on Kind Beauty Collective if it's makeup artist kit worthy and if she uses it on her clients. That's how you know it's high caliber.
The idea for Kind Beauty Collective came from her exhausting year on tour as makeup artist for Fifth Harmony, where replenishing products in her kit at the local Sephora, Ulta and drug stores wasn't cutting it. No one knew whether a product was cruelty-free or vegan and she felt frustrated that it was this hard to find the products she needed.
After video chatting with her for this piece, I was surprised to learn the makeup industry is still rather animal-product and animal eater laden. Very few seem to share her philosophy when it comes to cruelty-free beauty products, but she's on a mission to change that.
By making professional grade makeup available to everyone, Alexis wants everyone to know they can look like a superstar even if they're not on the cover of Star. And by superstar, she means your already gorgeous self.
She went vegan on a long drive a few years ago when she discovered videos displaying the cruelty animals of food and fashion endure every day. From that point on, she swore never to eat meat again. Now living in Long Beach, California she had a lot to say on being vegan, working in the makeup industry and radiating beauty from within.
How long did Kind Beauty Collective take to come together?
The ultimate goal in life is being fulfilled. What fulfills me is being able to give back and being able to protect them. And be around like minded people who want to do the same thing- protecting animals.. and each other! It's not just them it's all of us, all beings. I wanted to start a beauty boutique where I can have all the products I need all in one place. I need to correct the industry and fill that void. It took a total of about 5 months of research- the brands, the products the ingredients. Going through and testing different products on myself and my clients and trying to get feedback from people. On top of that, I wanted the website to be user friendly for people. I wanted it to be clean and simple to navigate. I had to learn a lot of things I wasn't familiar with, even down to the packaging. I didn't want to use the conventional boxes and packaging that are negatively contributing to our environment. So it was like how do I find boxes and wrap? I also won't put any product on Kind Beauty Collective just because it's vegan.
What are your tips for glowing skin?
Wash your face every night- I don't care how tired you are. I'm not a big fan of foamy washes. I'm really big on oil cleansers. I believe in using a serum every night, no matter what. Before I go to bed I always put a serum and I just pat it on my face. I've been using the Hana Organics one that I have. Same thing- very minimal ingredients. Just a few drops, pat all over your face and let it soak in. You'll want to put moisturizer on top of it but sometimes I'll even skip that depending on how my skin is doing.
(Alexis also is big on serum in moisturizer or foundation. If serums are too expensive then you can do the same with essential oils like rosehip seed oil or tea tree oil. A drop in your moisturizer can make a big difference!)
I recommend exfoliating for all of my clients. (Alexis says you should exfoliate 3-4 times a week if you use makeup on a daily basis and two times a week if you don't wear makeup consistently.) If you don't get rid of the dead skin on top, you're going to get more congestion, your skin I going to look dull, you won't have a glow, your skin will be more prone to breakouts. Cell turnover lasts 30 days which is why when you start a new refining you need regimen you need the full 30 days to see results.
As someone who has suffered from acne my entire life, I'd like to know (and I'm sure I'm not the only one!) some tips for glowing skin even when you're acne prone.
I recommend an oil cleanser. I'm not a fan of foamy cleansers. Always use a serum after, I like Hana Organic's serum. If your skin is dry you can moisturize. For problem skin, tea tree oil is great at reducing spots. You should exfoliate twice a week as well. Argan oil is a little heavy for skin, but even when I use other lighter oils I only use a drop or two. We all need different amounts of oil depending on our skin.
Skincare is the most important part of any regime. You won't have beautiful skin if you don't take care of it on the outside, but especially on the inside. Cutting down on your sugar intake helps a lot! If you're a vegan it's probably your sugar intake, but if it's not your sugar then make sure it's not too much soy. That can trigger it as well. Really high amounts of protein I've noticed has been a trigger for men. Sugar is probably one of the worst for skin though.
Try staying away from mattefying powders or foundations also. The Modern Minerals one has a glow to it. I always spray with a tonic or toner after applying foundation, always! I drench my face in it if I feel like my skin is a little dull. It sets everything, your skin glows and it balances your oils.
Changing your moisturizers (and your regimen) slightly throughout seasons is also important. People have beautiful skin from changing their regimens and not consuming things that aren't good for us.
People have to find that balance and become comfortable in your own skin more than anything. You don't need to wear four colors on your eyes, a contour, and foundation. It depends on your lifestyle and what you're comfortable with.
I’ve noticed you use all the products you sell on your clients. How do you decide what brands and products to carry?
Some things were necessity for me. Having really good eyeshadows that were effective and beautiful was huge. I look for quality, especially because I use it everyday on clients. So when I came across Modern Minerals I was like oh my gosh I love the fact that everything is what I need and want even for my own kit and on top that I want to share these with people! And then when you try the product you're like oh my gosh these are the best eyeshadows I've ever used! A lot of people have this misconception that mineral makeup is all the same and they really aren't, so that was a big thing too for me. I needed something that is different and doesn't have a lot of fillers and doesn't contain a lot of mineral allergens but still making sure that it's effective. When I'm in a quick hurry on a client I don't need a primer for Modern Minerals eyeshadows like most mineral eyeshadows. That was insane to me because I can use the eyeshadow on top and it's not going to drop everywhere like crazy. You don't need much, it's still going to look beautiful and the texture is gorgeous. I wanted something I could use on set and know that I can trust it but at the same time our everyday woman can use it everyday and know it's going to work.
You don't have to be on TV to wear these products, that's not what they're for. I want them to be accessible to anybody and I want people to trust that these products are actually going to work for them and be easy to use. This same concept is used in deciding on all products featured on Kind Beauty Collective. I don't always have a lot of time to work on my clients, sometimes I only have 20 minutes. So I want products that are going to work really well but are still ethical. I just wanted to say "Hey, I use these products on clients and on myself and I know they're going to work for you as well and you can trust them." I'm taking my time on this because I don't want an overwhelming selection-ever. And I don't just want filler products.
What’s your favorite beauty trick or tip?
I'm a minimalist makeup artist- I truly believe less is more! That said, I like highlighting the inner corner of eyes, bridge of your nose, and then your cupid’s bow after applying lip color.
Have to ask..favorite NYC restaurant?
Favorite west coast restaurant?
Gracias Madres in LA. It's a Latin style vegan restaurant.
Learning about veganism from makeup as a starting point seems so backwards but brilliant.
We all owe it to ourselves to be kinder to each other and ourselves. The more mindful we are about what we’re consuming or putting on our bodies makes a huge difference. I’m here to spread the word and educate other people and it’s up to them what to choose. This is the lifestyle I choose to live and this is what makes me happy.
Isn't she beautiful? One of my favorite parts of Kind Beauty Collective is the glossary- it truly answers the "why" about ingredients being not vegan. So often we recognize certain ingredients but can't justify why it's not vegan.
Alexis was super kind and sent me products from Kind Beauty Collective to try. I have used so many lip balms that I thought were very moisturizing, but apparently I didn't know what real moisture was because Ellovi has got it! The creamy, non greasy formula of hawaiian coconut, sunflower, hemp, macadamia, ghanaian marula and shea butter sinks right into your skin like it's been dry for ten years. And it doesn't sink so far down it disappears, it actually stays right below the surface. So my technical language and MD are non existent, but trust me when I say it's moisturizing. Use it on lips and skin- it's the ultimate multi-tasker.
The Haut Cosmetics Bio-Cocoa Balm in the shade "Love"I tried was equally impressive with such a highly concentrated pigment it glided on like buttah. Ellovi butter and this balm= the best thing since sliced bread. And bread with no crusts. The shade is very flattering on my pale skin tone but I truly believe this shade would work and pop for any color skin. I continue to parade the notion that a clear, glowing complexion and lip color is the best combo. Bright lip colors blur your complexion and sometimes make your teeth look whiter. Haut Cosmetic's balm lasted quite awhile and I only used a minuscule amount.
Just because a product is vegan doesn't mean it's going to work- leave it up to Kind Beauty Collective to call out the products worth purchasing.
I like pink things and glittery things and twirling things. I like them even better if they sing and wear a ring.