My love affair with Pure and Simple — a highly-acclaimed skincare line, store and spa, and pride of Toronto — began around the time I started dating Josh-O, say, in 2000. I remember strolling the streets of Yorkville with him, desperately looking for a cosmetic company that was animal friendly and that didn’t rely on chemicals. I saw the little store, thought, well, “if it’s in Yorkville, it MUST be GOOD,” and I walked up the stairs to its now-familiar door.

At the time the founder, Jean Eng, was working there. I told her what I was looking for, and she got right to it. She looked at my face, and gave me, perhaps, one of the best compliments I’ve ever gotten in my life: “your face,” she said, “it’s so full of drama — your big eyes, your full lips….” I don’t know why it struck me so deeply, but it did, especially coming from this beautiful, warm woman with NO MAKE UP, and perfectly dewy skin….

Since that day, I’ve been a devoted client of Pure and Simple, and they’ve opened stores in various locations around the city. I even post their logo on my home page — not because they pay me, BECAUSE THEY DON’T! — but because they share my passion for the environment, my belief in natural, holistic skincare, and because they’re so darn affordable for what they are (and relative to other chemical-laden lines). Of course, none of the lines they sell test on animals.

When you walk into the Pure+Simple store, you’ll find rows upon rows of the world’s finest organic lines, like celebrity-favourites Dr. Hauschka and Jurlique.

While these lines are, indeed, FABO, they can be very pricey. I’ve treated myself to the odd Hauschka and Jurlique products in my time, but I’ve learned that the much more affordable Pure-and-Simple products are just as FABO and, in some cases, MORE FABO!

And, just in case you’re getting concerned? FABO is a new thing for me. Really hoping it doesn’t stick.

SO, without further ado, CHEATY HEREBY RECOMMENDS PURE + SIMPLE for all your skincare and cosmetic needs! And, of course, the beauty of this recommendation is that it’s INTERNATIONAL, for Pure+Simple has a FABO website and FABO services. Just ask the winners from last year’s CHEATY GOODIES PURE+SIMPLE BEAUTY CONTEST….

Are you ready for this year’s contest? Before you CHECK IT, here are the products I’m currently using from Pure + Simple (I’ll also show them to you on video when I announce this year’s winners). All of them can be found on the Pure + Simple website — specifically, HERE (unless otherwise indicated).

1. AGELESS FOUNDATION. This is such a keeper for me. I don’t know what I’d do without it. Better than the MAC foundation (trust me — I used to LIVE on MAC), but without the chemicals AND with mineral-based sunscreen. It truly is the perfect powder foundation….

(I also use Pure+Simple’s Jane Iredale makeup line for blush, eyeshadows, eyeliners; and I use Pure+Simple’s own CRUELTY-FREE MAKEUP BRUSHES!)

2. EYE BRIGHTENING CREAM. Brighten and reduce fine lines NATURALLY. To think!? Gorgeouses, this is a new product. But, in the few weeks that I’ve been using it, I already notice a difference. Even though I’m not sleeping AT ALL (because of my teething toddler), my eyes look bright, and my fine lines are practically GONZO….

3. VITAMIN SERUM. OMG. This is the best stuff ever. And super affordable — especially given all the amazing stuff it does for your skin. Among its many benefits, this penetrating serum restores skin elasticity, prevents wrinkles and protects against free radicals. And, if you’re a little dehydrated, like I am, you can enjoy a little tingle in your skin that lets you know it’s working fashizzle. LOVE LOVE LOVE. I notice a HUGE difference in my skin since using this.

4. NOURISHING SUNFLOWER CREAM. Pure+Simple is particularly proud of this new product, and I can understand why. I use it day and night — and it’s been FABO on my sensitive skin. This protective cream not only protects the skin from the elements, but also nurtures and nourishes the skin, leaving it with a supple matte finish, awesome as a makeup base. The dewy skin all the employees at Pure+Simple have? Now I have it because of this product. Seriously, my skin TOTALLY thanks me for it….

5. NATURAL SUNSCREEN SPF 30. I’ve written about this product extensively over here. I use the Pure+Simple anti-aging sunscreen every day. Because, just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean you’re safe from wrinkle-causing UVs!

6. AYURVEDIC FACE AND BODY OILS. I love Pure+Simple’s Ayurvedic line. A companion to yoga, Ayurveda is the ancient Indian science of living. It is the root of all healing and is based on creating balance between the individual and the universe, and balance within the individual. The products in this line smell divine, and it feels so natural to hydrate and nourish your skin with natural oils and fragrances specifically catered to your “dosha” (or ayurvedic constitution) — vata, kapha or pitta. It’s like giving your hair a hot-oil treatment, only it’s your skin: there’s a visible difference immediately after you use it. I only have a small sample of this one, but, come my birthday, I may treat myself to a bottle…. (Note to vegans: the vata oil contains ghee, which is clarified butter.)

There you have it. I’m also supposed to be using my Lactic Acid every other night. But, I’ve been too lazy. The stuff is FABO, though, for exfoliating the skin — which is very important. Must get on that….

My day and night routines are really quick, actually. MORNING: cleanse, (should be toning, but don’t), Vitamin Serum, Eye Brightening Cream around the eyes, Sunflower Cream, and Sunscreen. NIGHT: cleanse, (should be toning, but don’t), (should be applying lactic acid every other night, but WILL), Vitamin Serum, Eye Brightening Cream around the eyes, Sunflower Cream, g’night.

And, there you have it! So, Gorgeouses, I implore you to check out Pure+Simple. It’s the number-ONE thing I recommend, as far as self-care goes, EVER. I’ve even bumped into CELEBRITIES there — so you know this stuff is GOOD.


Above: Pure + Simple ALL-Natural Sunscreen and Pure + Simple’s SKIN SOFTENING MOISTURE LOTION (LOVE!). I use the sunscreen in the morning and the Skin Softening Moisture Lotion before bed….

This week, I had the pleasure of opening my door to a nice-sized box from my FAVE store, Pure + Simple. After hugging it, covering it in kisses and shaking it a little, I finally opened it. Inside was a long-awaited PURE + SIMPLE ALL-NATURAL SUNSCREEN. They told me it was on the horizon a while ago, and I waited eagerly. And, and, AND, IT’S FINALLY HERE! I’ve been using it every day since I got it, and I love it.

Unlike other sunscreens, it smells wonderful — that’s the first thing I noticed. The scent is really subtle and just DELICIOUS. This is huge for me because I HATE the smell of ALL sunscreens. Especially all those children’s sunscreens. GAG. Way too strong to be any good for you and such a byotch to get off; when I used to use the regular drugstore screens, monkey would go to bed STILL smelling of it.

Second thing I noticed was that the Pure + Simple’s sunscreen goes on really smoothly. A lot of all-natural sunscreens are tough to rub in. But, this one glides right on, and it absorbs in time for me to put on my makeup — which I could not believe. The sunscreen’s an SPF 30, and I put my Ageless Foundation powder — which is also around SPF 30 — on top of it no problem. The sunscreen and the foundation powder give me around SPF 60. So, I’m totally good to go for the day.

FYI, here are some more specific deets on the sunscreen from the Pure + Simple Press Release…:

Using nourishing and natural ingredients, Pure+simple has developed a line of mineral sunscreens with an SPF 30 for the entire family. Locally produced, the Pure+simple sunscreen line is hypoallergenic and water resistant. In keeping with the company’s natural and holistic values, the sunscreens do not contain any chemical fragrances, chemical preservatives or emulsifiers. Also, unlike other natural sunscreens, this one does not leave behind a distinctive white residue.

In contrast to a chemical sunscreen, a natural sunscreen will not be absorbed into your skin, it will remain on the surface, providing a safe and effective barrier against the suns harmful rays.

The natural SPF is provided from two active ingredients – Zinc Oxide and Titanium Dioxide. Natural sunscreens, using zinc and titanium minerals, provide more than just sun protection. Zinc possesses soothing and disinfecting properties. This means that it is anti-inflammatory for sensitive skin and provides anti-bacterial properties for acne. The Titanium Dioxide particles are micronized as opposed to the more controversial nanoparticles. Titanium Dioxide nanoparticles have been included in many recent debates involving the harm upon entering the body’s bloodstream.

The GORJ peeps at Pure + Simple sent me a big bottle of the face-and-body sunscreen (that’s good for children, as well), AND a few other cute little bottles of their specialty screens: Baby, Sensitive Skin, Oily/Impure, and Anti-Aging. All of which are totally yummy (my new favourite word).

And, just to emphasize, sending me swag does not automatically get one a “Cheaty Recommends”! I stand by the products at Pure + Simple heart and soul. And, I recommend them to EVERYONE.

If you’re looking for a sunscreen without all the toxic gunk in it? This is your best bet. I DO have the Jurlique sunscreen and another all-natural one for babies to compare this to. And, I can easily say the Pure + Simple sunscreen is by far the best. It’s smoother, smells the best, absorbs the best — without residue — and is the most affordable. It’s also water-resistant and non-allergenic.

Order one now and get a 15% discount!

(Discount good for the entire month of July.)

Record-breaking heat, Gorgeouses. It was BEYOND hot here in Toronto this weekend. BE-YOND. And, guess whose air conditioning decided to go on strike? Give up? MINE! I’ve been a HOT SWEATY MESS all weekend. So much for my new haircut — I put it up in a bun almost as soon as I left the salon. More on all that at Cheaty Monkey.

We’ve been keeping cool by blasting our TWO WHOLE fans: one upstairs and one downstairs. But, OBVIOUSLY, that’s not enough.

Even a cool shower wasn’t enough.


I cracked open the HOLY GRAIL OF THE COOL! Avalon Organics Pepermint Bath and Shower Gel….

Lathering this up all over my HOT BAWD (I said HOT, not HOTT) was sheer pleasure this evening. I can’t even tell you how wonderfully cold it was on my HOT skin. And, when I inhaled its minty scent, I felt completely rejuvenated. In one inhalation of it’s fragrant fumes, and I went from feeling like this….

to feeling like this….

Girl Talk, Spa, by Jennifer Brinley.

Ahhhhhh. Totally refreshed and relaxed….

It’s great as a bubble bath, and for allergies, clearing the sinuses (an organic alternative to Vics…).

Minty fresh….

You can get it at any health-food store….

Cheaty highly recommends!