Where did our name come from? Sienna, a natural earth pigment

We are often asked where the name Sienna comes from, with many customers often presuming Danielle’s name is actually Sienna! In fact, none of our team are called Sienna, neither are any of our family members.

 

We chose Sienna for its meaning and vast history, as the first natural pigment used in early artwork.

sienna colour explained

Sienna is a natural iron oxide, or ‘earth colour’. Similar to ochres and umbers, these palettes of yellows, oranges, reds and browns have been used by artists for more that 40,000 years and are still visible in cave paintings, a testament to the stability of these minerals.

Sienna was first recorded as a colour name in 1760, although it was known and used in its natural form by the ancient Romans. The sienna pigment in its natural state is a yellow-brown, and when heated becomes a reddish brown called burnt sienna.

During the Renaissance, sienna in its raw and burnt states, was used by artists such as Caravaggio and Rembrandt as a brown in their palettes. It was traditionally mined in the town of Siena in southern Tuscany until sources were nearly exhausted, and in modern days the majority of sienna production is located on the Italian islands of Sardinia and Sicily.

When naming Sienna, we were drawn to the raw and organic history of the natural pigment. Sienna is everything we wanted from a name- it is undeniably beautiful, but has a vast history and associations with rich, pigmented colours- just like our polishes. When naming our polishes, we obviously had to pick the perfect brown to give our namesake. Sienna, is the perfect warm earthy tone to keep your manicure at its autumn best.

Aesop cosmetics

Ethical beauty brands making a difference this Fashion Revolution Week

It’s Fashion Revolution week this week, and the amount of traction we have seen from some of our favourite fashion brands has been very exciting. As each year goes by, we can see a huge push from customers reaching out to big brands and demanding answers- and the calls aren’t going unheard. Even the smallest change to the way fashion is produced and consumed can have a major impact both ethically and environmentally.

Beauty brands are also raising their hands and stepping up with their ethical ethos- and there are some particular favourites of ours leading the change.

Edible Beauty

Why we love them

We’ve raved about them before as an ethical beauty brand and we will continue to rave about them! The ethos behind Edible Beauty is second to none, worded simply around the promise, if you wouldn’t put it in your mouth, we won’t put it in our products. The Edible Beauty products are gorgeous, and simple to use, containing and abundance of Australian wildcrafted plants. All the ingredients are consciously selected based on proven therapeutic actions with restorative nutrients to help nourish your skin.

Their ethical commitment

All Edible Beauty Products are vegan and cruelty free. Their packaging is 100% recyclable and sourced from Switzerland. Edible Beauty uses wildcrafted ingredients in their products- this means the plant has been grown in nature without any human intervention, with no commercial farming methods.

 

Luk Beautifood

Why we love them

Following the ethos that eating healthy food and feeling good on the inside shows on the outside ethical beauty brand Luk Beautifood have applied their expertise to create beauty products from active foods without synthetic or toxic ingredients. Their makeup is made from ingredients packed with antioxidants to fight free radicals and inflammation that causes your skin to form lines, loose its firmness, breakout or discolour.

Their ethical commitment

The Luk Beautifood holistic approach to beauty is a breath of fresh air compared to the world of synthetic, potentially toxic makeup products that saturate our market. Not only do they preach the ethical living through their amazing products, their blog is a hub of information on ethical practice and living.

Aesop
Aesop cosmetics

Why we love them

If you’ve ever stepped into an Aesop store, you will know exactly why! They are an ethical beauty and body brand like no other, the entire philosophy and ethos of Aesop is something we should all aspire towards and look for when purchasing. Their products are formulated to the highest quality, using only plant-based and laboratory-made ingredients with a proven record of safety and efficacy.

Their ethical commitment

Aesop locations are selected and built to weave themselves into their surroundings, and harmonize with their environment. This thoughtfulness is further developed into their products. It is only in response to client needs and after extensive research, that a new product is launched onto the market, rather than overloading constantly with products and further contributing to consumerism.

Why you should switch to green beauty products

sienna nail polish

In the early days of green beauty it was difficult to find (predominantly in high end health-food stores) and didn’t go the distance of mainstream beauty brands. But oh, how things have changed!

These days, the green beauty market is saturated with amazing brands diversifying their reach and offering a huge array of products for every beauty need. However, there is still a stigma attached to green beauty products and their comparisons with mainstream brands. We completely understand- you’re looking for products that go the distance and provide you with a high-quality finish, which is what you get from your faithful regular brands. But hear us out- there are huge benefits in choosing green beauty products, and are many brands out there delivering the highest quality products without sacrificing on anything!

The biggest alarm bell for us, is the number of potentially harmful chemicals found in regular beauty products. The skin is our biggest organ- which begs the question, why is there not more concern surrounding the number of chemicals we are lathering onto it, through our beauty products? Women put an average of 168 chemicals on their bodies each day through their various beauty products. But how can this be avoided? Through a little bit of research and making the simple switch to green beauty products. Other than the obvious benefit of saying goodbye to the harsh chemicals, the majority of green brands are also vegan and cruelty free certified and in many cases eco-friendly and ethical minded.

One of our favourites for natural skin care is Edible Beauty. Their product range epitomises purity, luxury and quality; making the promise if you wouldn’t put it in your mouth, we won’t put it in our products. For dewy, radiant, all-over glow, Luma Beauty is a beautiful choice. Their highlighter stick, illuminating primer and bronzing primer, all gorgeous products for a natural day-to-day look. When it comes to full glam green makeup, Eco Minerals is at the top of our list. Their mineral foundation goes on beautifully and is build-able for a tailored finish.

There’s one thing to remember before making the switch to green beauty products. Not all ‘natural’ and ‘green’ products are created equally. There is no governing body determining whether a product can be labelled as natural or not, so make sure to read ingredients labels carefully, or look out for their certifications before making your decision.

Are there green beauty brands you love, that we haven’t mentioned! Let us know!

A vegan Easter menu to see you through the long weekend

The longest-long weekend of the year is upon us! Whether you celebrate Easter or not, the days are still warm and it is the perfect opportunity to say goodbye to Summer by spending time with family and friends. Other than our time spent boogying at Bluesfest over the long weekend, we have scheduled a big get together with our family and close friends- which means one thing… vegan Easter recipes!
We’ve turned to some of our favourite foodies for all the inspo for our Vegan Easter menu! Keeping the menu healthy, but still satisfying is the best way to get through the long weekend without the guilt! And it also means more vegan Easter eggs to indulge on…

We’re thinking fresh, seasonal foods but hearty enough to warm the belly and the soul! Whenever we are in need of a healthy fix or new recipe idea, these three amazing ladies are our first port of call, Elsa’s Wholesome Life, Deliciously Ella and Loni Jane. They are always creating new, delicious and (of course) vegan recipes that we can’t get enough of- and their blogs are full of endless health and wellness advice.

So what’s on our vegan Easter menu this long weekend?

for sides:

Deliciously Ella’s Pesto Butter Bean Salad and Roasted Mediterranean Veg with Tomato Pesto 

Vegan Easter Mediterranean Veg

 

for main:

Elsa’s Wholesome Life’s Creamy Vegan Mushroom Alfredo

warm, hearty but low carb- so no yucky, post-pasta feeling!

Vegan Easter Creamy Mushroom Alfredo

 

for dessert:

Elsa’s Wholesome Life’s Healthy Hot Cross Buns

Because… it wouldn’t be Easter weekend without a cheeky hot cross bun… right! This version though has far less sugar and much higher nutritional value!

Vegan Easter Elsa's Wholesome Life Hot Cross Buns

 

Post-Long Weekend Brekky Boost:

Loni Jane’s Superfood Burcha

The long will inevitably come to an end- but that doesn’t mean we can’t keep treating ourselves. Loni Jane has the best bircher recipe we have ever tried. PACKED full of superfood, easy to assemble and very high in fibre to keep you full for longer, as you kick those post-long weekend blues!

Vegan Easter Loni Jane Burcha

 

The Festival Survival Guide you need pre Bluesfest!

festival survival guide

 

There is nothing worse than the feeling that you’ve forgotten something important, and when it comes to camping at a music festival, forgetting one of the vital things can make it a very different experience! We’ve done it quite a few times now and consider ourselves old hands at it, so we’ve written a festival survival guide, sharing the tips and tricks we have learnt over the years!

Camping Essentials

If you’re camping at Bluesfest, we are going to presume you have the obvious essentials organised- tent, shade, chairs table, cooking equipment etc. What other campsite essentials are you going to need?

  • Disinfectant wipes for any sticky situations
  • More water than you could possibly drink
  • Quick, simple snacks that don’t require any preparation
  • A torch or lantern (don’t waste your phone battery!)
  • Rubbish bags
  • A full tank of fuel in your car- if you’re planning on charging phones through your car, or having it as a refuge from the heat/cold at any point, you don’t want to be caught out!
  • Battery-powered fan to direct onto your face for instantly cooling!
  • Sunscreen to avoid awkward tan lines and unwanted burning
  • Reusable straws- you’ve read about how bad they are for the environment, and you can buy some cute novelty straws to match the fun energy of the festival

Packing Essentials

Packing for any trip suitably is quite an art form, so this festival survival guide is a point-you-in-the-right-direction aid. Surely no one has ever packed the perfect amount of clothes for a weekend away? Luckily, if you’re driving to the festival, weight limits don’t apply to how much you can pack into your car! It is also better to be over prepared for a festival, but there are some often forgotten items that you end up wishing you had brought!

  • Enough warm clothes. Even festivals in the middle of summer can get cold if it rains or storms- and Easter weekend at Bluesfest the temperature is starting to cool off at night. Bring enough warm clothes in case any get muddy or dirty.
  • Plastic Thongs for showers
  • Makeup wipes and a face spritzer to keep your skin fresh
  • Body wipes as an alternative to showering if things get crazy!
  • Toilet Paper

 

Handbag essentials

No festival survival guide would be complete without the go-to bag essentials. The bag you carry for the day can definitely exclude the majority of your day-to-day necessities- so just bring along a small shoulder bag for easy access throughout the day. But there are a couple of key items not to be caught without!

  • Mini hand sanitizer
  • Small poncho folded up in the bottom of your bag (perfect for sitting on the grass or incase a shower comes through)
  • Portable phone charger- just in case you’re on 3% when Tash is playing Jungle and you need to get that quick video!
  • Cash & ID, obviously!
  • A handful a band-aids, if your boots aren’t as comfortable as you hoped!
  • Nurofen and Panadol. We aren’t all perfect and sometimes forget to drink enough water… don’t let a niggling headache stop you from enjoying your favourite artists

And do not forget…

The non-essential, essentials

The things that you don’t need to survive, but definitely need to create an aesthetically beautiful campsite, and long-lasting memories…

  • Battery Powered Fairy Lights- for a bit of twinkly atmosphere
  • Inflatable Pool Toys- they also make extremely comfortable seats
  • Disposable Film cameras- because nothing screams festival more than grainy, noisy photos you can develop afterwards
  • Portable Speakers- keep these to a minimum late at night or into the early morning, but always a great mood booster to accompany your morning camping ritual
  • Funky flag or stuffed toy- to tie up high, and make finding your campsite so much easier

There you have it, our tried and tested festival survival guide! Let us know how you go a Bluesfest this year, we can’t wait to see all your beautiful photos! If you’re wanting some ideas on who to see at Bluesfest, check out the artists we are definitely going to be watching!

Byron Bay Bluesfest- the acts you’ll find us front and centre for!

Byron Bay Bluesfest 2018 acts to see

Every year, Byron Bay Bluesfest is one of the biggest and most vibrant events in our local area, attracting visitors from across the country and international acts. We are so lucky to have Byron Bay Bluesfest right in our backyard, and if this year’s line up is anything to go by, it’s going to be one massive weekend of fun and frivolity.

If there is one thing we have learnt from our years exploring the buzz of music festivals- it’s that often the best times and most enjoyable act you experience, are the once unplanned for! That’s why, we don’t like to overfill our schedules with who we want to see- rather we pick our favourites for each day, and then let the day take us on a journey! The beauty of Byron Bay Bluesfest, is there is such a huge variety of music, stalls, artists and performers, that you can always be discovering something or someone new.

So who are our must-sees for each day? We’ve put together a short list of the acts we will be front-and-centre for, and everyone else will be a happy surprise!

Thursday

Tash Sultana– singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and local talent that we have on repeat in the office

Holy Holy– two-piece indie rock band bound to get the crowd going with their huge tracks True Lover and Elevator!

Friday

Asgeir– anyone familiar with the Icelandic singer-songwriter’s music will understand why he is a must-see. His music soars above the crowds and fills the air to undeniably beautiful effect.

Ms Lauryn Hill– One of the most influential R&B performers of her time and playing an exclusive set at Byron Bay Bluesfest this year- one not to miss!

Saturday

2018 Busking Finalists– Previous years’ busking competitions have seen the likes of Kim Churchill coming through the ranks, with every year unearthing a huge range of new talent to watch.

Sunday

Ziggy Alberts– the coastal folk singer/songwriter is a Byron Bay local and sure to pull a huge crowd for his Sunday evening set.

First Aid Kit– the sisters from Sweden create the most enchanting folk music and we are beyond excited to see them on Australian soil!

Monday

Dan Sultan– he’s our favourite, he’s everyone’s favourite, we can’t wait to see Dan Sultan for obvious reasons… (he’s amazing)

Who are your top picks for Bluesfest thing year? And what nail colour are you going to be wearing? Let us know, and tag us in your photos!

p.s. we are going for our festival favourite, Gypsy

10 free nail polish

Decoding 5, 7 and 10 free nail polish – what you need to know

5, 7 and 10 free nail polish… what does it mean?

The terms 5 free, 7 free, 10 free and even 12 free are often thrown around in the nail polish world… but what does it even mean? We like to keep you all informed and in a position to make the most educated decision- especially when it comes to beauty products and your health. It can often be hard to decode all the chemical names and choose what your best option is- so we are explaining the complete truth behind these commonly used claims.

An important thing to remember when choosing your polish, is that all these labels are purely marketing terms. There is no organisation or regulatory body who governs the use of these terms- it is just different companies employing terms that work best alongside their branding and message. Yes- you read correct, no brand goes through any testing or registration to be able to use the terms 5 free, 7 free or 10 free nail polish.

So what does it all mean?

5-Free

This means the nail polish is free from 5 potentially harmful chemicals found in many generic nail polish formulas. These chemicals omitted are formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate and toluene and the allergens camphor and formaldehyde resin.

7-Free

As well as the 5 ingredients omitted from 5-free nail polish, 7-free also forgoes ethyl tosylamide, and xylene.

8- Free, 9-Free, 10-Free etc

As you can imagine, 8, 9 and 10 free nail polish brands continue to add ingredients into their omissions list- including being free from fragrances, parabens and animal derived products. The reality of the ever-increasing ‘free’ list, is that it is never ending. It is important to choose a polish that is free from these nasties- as there are definite links to health side effects that your body is much better off avoiding.

So what is our current position on all of this?

We originally launched as a 7-free nail polish- but have since changed our bottle design and removed it from our marketing. Why? We haven’t changed our formula, but don’t believe it is necessary to limit ourselves to a number or ranking. We are free of all the nasty chemicals and allergens, do not contain any animal derived products, fragrances or parabens, and we are also Benzophenone-1 Free– an often-overlooked endocrine system disruptor. If there was an official body governing what defines 5, 7, 10 free etc, we would definitely align ourselves. However as there isn’t, at the moment we could say we were 15-free and include plastic cap free, sugar-free, gluten-free, lactose-free, fat-free and carb-free! You get the idea, it’s a never ending game!

For the foreseeable future, we will continue to create the same amazing nail polish, without any “x-free” labels and you can be rest assured it contains zero of the nasties!

Lightning Top Coat

$25.00
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Nail Polish Remover – Water Based with Soy

$30.00
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Base Coat

$25.00
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Peace

$25.00
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Barefoot Dancer

$25.00
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Nail Polish Remover Wipes – Water Based with Soy

$18.00
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Shop Ethical: 10 tips to make the switch

shop ethicalMaking the decision to shop ethical, is one that often people overlook or dismiss as too difficult to be a viable option. From the outside, it may seem like anything produced “ethically” is hard to access, limited in range and style- but when following the advice of a few very well researched individuals, we have discovered it is anything but! There are so many benefits to making the decision to shop ethical– helping the planet, saying no to animal cruelty, and having a positive impact on humanity.

The first step (and simplest) in making your move to shop ethical, is to have conscious intent when purchasing. This means cutting out impulse spending, and making sure the items you purchase are adding value and purpose to your life.

When we embarked on our journey to shop ethical and reduce our impact on the planet, Eco Warrior Princess was our first port of call. Jennifer has a number of great articles and resources to guide you with purchasing decisions. The articles on 7 steps to reducing your fashion footprint, how millennials can save the world through eco fashion, and the buy nothing new challenge are all fantastic reading to delve into.

After scouring Eco Warrior Princess (for what may have been hours!) these 10 tips really struck a chord with us:

  • Think, do you need it? Is it a necessity or going to add value into your life? If no, you don’t need it.
  • Do your research. How is it going to be of use to you, what are the ethical and eco-friendly brands for the particular item, where can you purchase them from.
  • Is it possible to buy second hand? If it is, you’ll be doing the earth a favour by reusing an item rather than adding a new one into the cycle.
  • Have you chosen eco-friendly fabrics? This one is a no brainer, avoid synthetic where possible.
  • Shop local- by doing this you are supporting your community and local artisans.
  • Choose Quality- another no brainer. The price tag may be steeper in the beginning, but quality will last the test of time, making its cost per use a lot lower than an item you have to keep replacing.
  • Bring a resuable bag and say no to single use plastic.
  • Say no to packaging- another scenario where you can ditch the single use plastic.
  • Wash it less. Spot clean with a damp rag where you can, to lengthen its life.
  • Make it last. Simple tricks like washing less, learning how to mend holes, and storing it correctly will mean your item lasts significantly longer.

Even just employing one or two of these tips will dramatically reduce your impact on the world! Let us know how you go!

Ethical consumer decision making

We were recently nominated as a finalist at the Life Instyle GALA awards in the ethical category. We are so excited to be considered among a group of truly inspiring brands and continue to raise awareness about the importance of ethical decision making.

For many brands, when referring to their ethics, the word artisan gets thrown around a lot. Working directly with artisans- true masters of their craft, is a fantastic way to ensure the products you are creating have heart, soul, and run ethically true. We are lucky enough with our nail polish, to be able to manufacture with amazing artisans here in Australia, keeping our supply and production chain very close to home- making your ethical decision making an easy one. The timber from our caps is a locally sourced pest tree, allowing us to remain not only ethical and true to our values, but eco-friendly as well.

But what does ethical even mean? And why is it so important to consider when making purchasing decisions? Ethical fashion and beauty covers a range of issues including working conditions, exploitation, fair trade, sustainable production, the environment and animal welfare. Many of the products and brands you know and love, have zero commitment to ensuring their production and supply chains remain above-board when it comes to these issues. However, times are changing- customers are demanding to see the complete story when it comes to what they’re purchasing, and big brands have no choice but to listen.

The beauty in purchasing from small businesses, particularly Australian companies- is that this supply chain is more often than not, a very clear one. We are able to speak to everyone personally, go visit them, and build a culture of ethically sound production.

It is these sustainable practices that we will continue to uphold throughout all of our practice, in our ethical decision making to bring you our product. We follow our polishes every single step of the way- from designing colour palettes, to ordering and creating our colours, through to packaging and sending them to our customers. If you want to know more about our journey and ethical story, read here.

We can’t wait to celebrate with all the other amazing brands nominated in the ethical category, and share in what is such a fundamental movement towards ensuring the future of our planet.

A Valentine’s sunrise spent at V Day Byron Bay

V Day Byron Bay sunrise main beach

V Day Byron Bay red towels on beach

V Day Byron Bay nails painted red

V Day Byron Bay sunrise overlooking byron bay

V Day Byron Bay hands in air

V Day Byron Bay crowd hands in air

V Day Byron Bay people standing with hands in air

V Day Byron Bay women gather for one billion rising

V Day Byron Bay women stand strong in solidarity

V Day Byron Bay women dancing for revolution

V Day Byron Bay sea of red at main beach

V Day Byron Bay women standing with hands in air

V Day Byron Bay women dancing for one billion rising

V Day Byron Bay group stand with hands in air for one billion rising

V Day Byron Bay one billion rising speech

V Day Byron Bay women gathered wearing red

V Day Byron Bay women dancing

V Day Byron Bay red female symbol

V Day Byron Bay group together arms spread

V Day Byron Bay no means no

V Day Byron Bay women dancing arms in air

V Day Byron Bay woman in red dancing

V Day Byron Bay woman in red standing with arm in air

V Day Byron Bay women in red dancing one billion rising

V Day Byron Bay group standing together at main beach

V Day Byron Bay woman in patterned dress dancing in byron bay

V Day Byron Bay group standing together arms spread

V Day Byron Bay women clapping hands and dancing

V Day Byron Bay women gathered together

V Day Byron Bay no means no

V Day Byron Bay women gathered for sunrise

V Day Byron Bay women jumping together in red

 

V Day Byron Bay everyone together on main beach

V Day Byron Bay overlooking ocean

Women, dancing, and a sea of red- this is how we spent our Valentine’s Day morning. One Billion Rising is a worldwide event, held on Valentine’s Day every year, aiming to bring an end to violence against women. For the V Day Byron Bay event, hundreds of women and their allies gathered on Main Beach in a demonstration that was empowering, invigorating and truly inspiring to be a part of. We danced, we yelled, and showed the community and the world that we believe now is the time for a revolution. It was a true showing of women standing up and owning their experiences, showing that we are not defined by the statistics of violence against women that plague us.

One Billion Rising is an event founded in 2012 by activist, feminist and playwright Eve Ensler. The movement calls for a revolution, and as each year passes it gains more and more traction worldwide. The revolution demands vision, community, trust, commitment, courage, belief, hope and love. The hundreds of women gathered for V Day Byron Bay were loud, vivacious and empowered to demand the respect that women around the world are so often neglected. One Billion Rising unites people globally in the dream of a world devoid of exploitation, discrimination and violence.

The most poignant part of the morning? When a show of hands was asked for the question: have you, or anyone you know, been a victim of sexual assault or violent? A sea of hands rose into the air. We are all affected. All women know of someone, or have personally fallen victim to violence at some stage in their lives. The women at V Day Byron Bay as well as the women around the world rising together, is a collective statement demanding now is the time for change.

One Billion Women assaulted is an atrocity, one billion women rising is a revolution.

The colours we wore were Torakina and (aptly named) Freedom.