REVIEW: MŪN Skincare


The creation of MŪN Skincare (pronounced 'moon') was co-founded by makeup artist Munemi Imai a few years ago, and her passion for green living lead her to envisioning a natural line. While traveling and learning about ingredients, she had a remarkable experience with using Prickly Pair Oil while on a trip in Morocco, where MŪN sources this oil from a local co-op of women. 

The MŪN philosophy- to make a company that would do good from end to end - from the customer who uses the product and experiences better skin to the producers who use ethical practices to protect our environment and bring sustainable growth where it’s needed.

The line currently consists of five stellar products: cleanser, toner, serum, multipurpose oil, and a body serum. Every ingredient serves a purpose. There is a travel set available also, which is a great way to introduce these beautiful products into your routine. 

Travel Set, $75

Travel Set, $75


-Price: $60 for 3.38oz
-Texture & Smell: Milky serum texture, pleasant citrus smell (probably from the yuzu oil)
-Packaging: Opaque Black Glass with pump
-Ingredients: Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil* Argania Spinosa (Argan) Kernel Oil* Aqua Camellia Oleifera (Camellia) Seed Oil* Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Oil Sodium Laurylglucosides Hydroxypropylsulfonate Silica Silylate Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate Sodium Bis-Hydroxyethylglycinate Coco-Glucosides Crosspolymer Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Seed Oil Tocopherol (Non-GMO Vitamin E) Isopropyl Palmitate Citrus Junos (Yuzu) Oil *Certified Organic
-Review: I ADORE this cleanser, and it smells so lovely, you'll have a hard time wanting to rinse it off. Sometimes you find those cleansers that are so uplifting, this is one of them. The pH is slightly acidic, I tested it at about a 4.9. This dissolved even stubborn waterproof makeup easily. All skin types can use this- although it does leave the tiniest nourishing feel if you don't use a gentle muslin or washcloth. Perfect for a first cleanse for oily skin (or use a cloth with it) or as your one and done cleanse for normal to dry skin. This uses gentle cleansing agents derived from coconut in a base of soothing and nourishing antioxidant oils, truly a beautiful product.

 $65 for 3.38oz
-Texture & Smell: Liquid watery texture, rose scent (obviously!) which doesn't linger, dries quickly but leaves skin velvety soft.
-Packaging: Opaque Black Glass with misting top
-Ingredients: De-ionized Water, Rose Hydrosol* (Rose Water), Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Juice*, Maltodextrin, Opuntia Ficus-Indica (Prickly Pear) Stem Extract, Lycium Barbarum Fruit (Goji Berry) Extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract*, Rosa Centifolia Flower Extract, Jasminum Officinale (Jasmine) Flower Extract, Bellis Perennis (Daisy) Flower Extract, Lanthaan Gum, Vegetable Glycerin, Dehydroacetic Acid, Benzyl Alcohol**. *Certified ORGANIC **The Benzyl Alcohol is a naturally occurring ingredient derived from essential oils of Ylang Ylang and Jasmine. It is an aromatic alcohol that functions as a preservative, which is necessary for any product containing water and/or hydrosol to prevent mold, bacteria, and microbial growth.
-Review: This toner is a ph of 4.5, and it goes above and beyond your traditional rose toners and mists. Mun uses organic rose hydrosol as the second ingredient, but also includes many other hydrating, soothing and anti-aging ingredients like prickly pear and goji berry extracts (antioxidant), hyaluronic acid (hydration), and willow bark (a plant based gentle exfoliant). Hydrosols are very different from an essential oil which sometimes can be irritating for certain skin types, they have the same constituents but very different ratios. Since hydrosols are 99.95% water, they are safer than essential oils in regards to possible sensitivity. This does contain 3 flower extracts: Jasmine, Daisy and Rosa Centifolia, all which absolutely have skin benefits, but if you have strong allergies to flowers, do a patch test first.

Opuntia Ficus-Indica aka Prickly Pear! (photo from

Opuntia Ficus-Indica aka Prickly Pear! (photo from

-Price: $95 for .68 fl oz
-Texture & Smell: Clear yellowish tint oil, light texture, hearty rose scent.
-Packaging: Opaque Black Glass with pump top
-Ingredients: Opuntia Ficus-Indica (Prickly Pear) Seed Oil*, Argania Spinosa Kernel (Argan) Oil*, Rosa Damascene Flower Oil*. *Certified Organic
-Review: This oil cocktail soaks in quickly, and leaves a beautiful finish on the skin. The rose scent does linger on the skin, so if you are a fan of rose, you'll adore this. Prickly Pear is an antioxidant oil rich in amino acids (boosts collagen), omegas, and vitamin K. Second is Argan oil, another antioxidant oil rich in lipids and fatty acids. The final ingredient is organic rose oil which gives this serum its scent. Mun uses an organic steam distilled rose oil sourced from Bulgaria, which is where the world's best rose oil comes from- and most likely which contributed to the cost of this product. There is research to show this high quality oil to have antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties. I love this for under eyes also! 

-Price: $75 / 3.38oz
-Texture & Smell: This is an oil, but its very light and soaks in so fast- it doesn't leave the skin a bit greasy at all. Scent is herby
-Packaging: Opaque Black Glass with pump top
-Ingredients: Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil*, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Seed Oil, Rosa Moschata (Rosehip) Seed Oil*, Opuntia Ficus Indica (Prickly Pear) Seed Oil*, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil*, Boswellia Carterii (Frankincense) Oil,  Origanum Majorana (Marjoram) Oil*, Citrus Aurantium (Neroli) Oil*. *Certified Organic
-Review: The first five ingredients are powerhouse antioxidants with incredible soothing, repairing, anti-aging and hydrating properties which absolutely will improve the appearance of your skin. The last four ingredients are essential oils, which not only give this body serum it's amazing smell but have unique benefits for the skin. I like to apply products like this on slightly damp skin right our of the shower, skin feels very nourished after one use!

-Price: $70 / 6.76oz
-Texture & Smell: No noticeable scent.
-Packaging: Opaque Black Glass with pump top
-Ingredients: Just one! Organic Argan Oil sourced from Morocco
-Review: Argan oil contains multiple fatty acids, is a good source of vitamin E, and functions as an antioxidant. This could be used anywhere on the body to hydrate- including hands, face, or hair. Your skin will obviously benefit from more than a single ingredient, however this could be used as a top layer anywhere you need extra nourishment.


Anytime I see a brand on my instagram feed or in a magazine that I'm not familiar with, I'll immediately jump on their website and go straight towards the ingredient listing to see if there are any products worth looking into. More times then not, the initial excitement turns into disappointment - but oh how nice it is to be pleasantly surprised. After looking at a few of these products, my interest was piqued, and a sampler kit was ordered right away! 

TAHNYC (pronounced 'tonic') was started after the founder, Irene Barksy, had a myriad of skin issues. Irene explains: “It all really started after I found out that I unexpectedly developed a contact allergy to sesquiterpene lactones, parabens and the entire sunflower family, also knows as the Asteraceae or Compositae family which includes over 30,000 species of plants. I say unexpectedly, because I never experienced allergies as a child nor as an adult, then one day that changed. Among many of my internal symptoms, the reactions would leave my face covered in oozing painful pustules that would crack and continue to puss for days. So when I heard from my doctors with simple instructions, ‘remove all products that contained those allergens’, little did I know that that was the easy part. The allergic reactions left my skin sensitive and unable to tolerate fillers, slip agents and texture makers. Even after I removed all allergens from my skin, I found that my skin was still exceptionally reactive and not going back to ‘normal’. Being sensitive or reactive to additives in Skin Care is not so unusual, quite a large number of people who are tested are reactive or allergic to ingredients found in cosmetics. I realized then it wasn't about going back to normal, that would never happen, this was and still is, my new normal. I remember the moment TAHNYC began so clearly. I was standing in Whole Foods looking for a dish sponge, I picked up the Twist Naked Sponge and that's when you might say I lost it. ‘Wait, I can pick up a filler free sponge, I can get a filler free toothpaste, but I can't find filler free skin care!?!’ That was the moment that TAHNYC was born, after, of course I cried in the Whole Foods cleaning aisle.” (This excerpt is taken directly from their website,

And there you have it, from Irene's journey was born a gorgeous line of products with proven ingredients and without added fillers, fragrance, slip agents, parabens, or texture makers. This means every ingredient has a purpose. 

  • Samples are available, enough for about 4 to 5 uses. Products also come in .67 oz 'discovery sizes'  AND 1 oz full sizes. I wish all brands did this!
  • The serums have common similar ingredients, and I would confidently say any of them are good for all skin types. Oily or acne prone skin will love these, nothing will clog pores or let you feel greasy. Dry skin will get a boost of replenishing anti-aging ingredients all while calming and soothing. You can't pick the wrong one, although some are more geared towards aging skin.
  • I consider all of these products safe for the upper and lower eye area. 
  • TAHNYC also make powders, one silk powder and three shades of pearl powders. I didnt try these but they look fabulous.
  • Sets of serums for specific skin concerns are also available, which include two serums and an optional powder- and these also come in two sizes. The serums in the sets are actually slightly different formulas then the stand alone serums from my sampler kit, which I found a little confusing initially (!) since the ingredients in the sets are very similar to the other serums not in the set. If you are looking to fill a void in your routine, go with a stand alone serum, but if you want to try the line as a complete system, go with a set.
Photo taken from

Photo taken from

The sampler kit (shown above) included dropper style vials of 6 products:
Complex B: Concentrated Vitamin B5 Serum
Pure: Restoring Molecular Moisturizer
Contour: :Cellular Peptide Complex
Elemental:Gentle Hydration
Renew: Antiaging Collagen Complex
Translucent Jojoba: Organic Jojoba Oil

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Since these are truly great for any skin type, think about which ones to get based on age.
Teen to early twenties:  Elemental or Pure + Complex B
Early twenties to Early thirties: Pure + Renew + Complex B
Early thirties and up: Pure + Contour + Complex B

Complex B: Concentrated Vitamin B5 Serum
-Price: $36 (discovery size .67 oz) or $68 (full size 1 oz)
-Texture: waterlight, dries within seconds, no stickiness, very smooth feeling skin immediately
-Ingredients: aqua, panthenol, n-acetyl glucosamine, lactobacillus ferment,  tetrapeptide-21, glycerin, butylene glycol, acetyl tetrapeptide-40, caprylyl glycol, sodium hyaluronate, sodium pca.
-Benefits: Panthenol is a type of B vitamin pantothenic acid, excellent for attracting and holding moisture. N-acetyl glcosamine brightens, increases moisture AND is anti-aging. Lactobacillus ferment is antimicrobial and a skin conditioner. Two peptides for anti-aging. The glycols are skin conditioners. Glycerin is an awesome humectant. Pca hydrates and replenishes skin. Sodium Hyaluronate is a skin replenisher and skin restorer.

Pure: Restoring Molecular Moisturizer
-Price: $32 (discovery size .67 oz) or $58 (full size 1 oz)
-Texture: waterlight, dries within seconds, no stickiness, very smooth feeling skin immediately
-Ingredients: aqua, n-acetyl glucosamine, panthenol, niacinamide, sodium hyaluronate, lactobacillus ferment, sodium pca.
-Benefits: Similar to above, but without the peptides and the addition of niacinamide. Niacinamide is one of those 'does almost everything' ingredients, it's a form of vitamin B3, which can help pore size, plump wrinkles, and even out skin tone. 

Elemental: Gentle Hydration
-Price: $21 (discovery size .67oz) or $38 (full size 1 oz)
-Texture: waterlight, dries within seconds, no stickiness, very smooth feeling skin immediately
-Ingredients: aqua, panthenol,  n-acetyl glucosamine, sodium pca, lactobacillus ferment, acetyl tetrapeptide-40, caprylyl glycol, sodium hyaluronate
-Benefits: Very similar to B Complex but with a higher amount of sodium pca, so I would consider this more geared towards younger skin types that don't need as much anti-aging. 

Renew: Anti Aging Collagen Complex
-Price: $35 (discovery size .67oz) or $65 (full size 1oz)
-Texture: waterlight, dries within seconds, no stickiness, very smooth feeling skin immediately
-Ingredients: aqua, tetrapeptide-21, glycerin, butylene glycol, panthenol, lactobacillus ferment, tetradecyl aminobutyroylvalylaminobutyric urea trifluoroacetate,  palmitoyl tripeptide-5, palmitoyl dipeptide-5 diaminobutyroyl hydroxythreonine, palmitoyl dipeptide-6 diaminohydroxybutyrate , sodium pca
-Benefits: This is a multi peptide serum, five in total. Plus skin restoring and replenishing ingredients like the panthenol, glycerin, and sodium pca. Great anti-aging serum for fine lines, I especially love this for oily or acne skin types that still want anti-aging ingredients. 

Contour: Cellular Peptide Complex
-Price: $50 (discovery size .67oz) or $95 ( full size 1oz)
-Texture: waterlight, dries within seconds, no stickiness, very smooth feeling skin immediately
-Ingredients: aqua, acetyl hexapeptide-8,  glycerin, butylene glycol, carbomer,  polysorbate 20, palmitoyl oligopeptide,  palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7, tetrapeptide-21, panthenol, tetrapeptide-30 . glycerin, n-acetyl glucosamine,  niacinamide, sodium hyaluronate,  lactobacillus ferment, acetyl hexapeptide-38, acetyl tetrapeptide-40, caprylyl glycol, sodium pca,  phenoxyethanol, potassium sorbate
-Benefits: This serum is a peptide powerhouse! Plus a dose of niacinamide and sodium hyaluronate. This is more suited for serious wrinkles and all signs of aging.

Translucent Jojoba: Organic Jojoba Oil
-Price: $20 (discovery size .67oz) or $38 (full size 1oz)
-Texture: Its the lightest oil, soaks in fast, leaves skin a little dewy. 
-Ingredients: Just one: Premium wildcrafted refined organic jojoba oil. 
-Benefits: Jojoba is rich in fatty acids, soothing, nourishing, and won't clog your pores. It's so lightweight. I would use this anywhere you need a little extra moisturizing protection. For us oily skin types, I love this under the eyes and over the lips.

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Final Thoughts
This is an amazing brand doing something really unique, and rarely am I able to say that every single product in the line is formulated beautifully.

With all of the actives we are using (retinoids, acids, etc) there is a place for a replenishing serum like these in anyone's skin type, not to mention those of you with very sensitive or highly reactive skin. Personally, I have very oily/acne prone/sensitive skin and have a hard time finding anti-aging and hydration in a liquid form, so these will become a mainstay in my routine. xx jm

GREEN BEAUTY: The Best Natural Exfoliants

Regular exfoliation is essential- and whether it's a manual scrub or a leave on acid, the days of your St Ives apricot scrub should be long gone. I've put together my favorites in all exfoliation categories, focusing on eco-friendly and clean beauty. 

You can read the full article on Garden Collage here!

Garden Collage curates stories about the aesthetic value of gardens, plant-based beauty products, environmental policy, the farm to table movement, DIY gardening tips, travel journals, and other fresh takes on the value of gardening in our modern world. Their mission is to bring back the garden into peoples’ lives and inspire readers to incorporate a new, dynamic concept of “gardening” based on perspectives from a global community of gardeners. From the farm to the fire escape, they cover it all. Prepare to be INSPIRED.


REVIEW: Allies Of Skin

Image from

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About the brand: Founded in 2015 but Singaporean Nicolas Travis, and launching in the US this past October, this streamlined skincare system has a simple goal in mind: to create smart, multi-tasking products for modern life. Currently there are three products in the line, a AM leave on mask, a toner mist, and a PM mask. The 'masks' are left on, but applied just as you would any moisturizer. I like that they call these masks, because you get such a huge dose of antioxidant protection, that they really do shield your skin! 

Allies of Skin is driven by a fundamental belief in the skin’s ability to heal and correct itself. Our guiding principle is to facilitate and enhance the healing process with powerful actives in clean, optimally concentrated formulas that repair, regenerate and also re-train your skin to perform at its best. By activating the receptors that stimulate collagen & elastin, and encourage cellular renewal & repair and by inhibiting melanin formation at its source, the long-term cumulative outcome is skin at its healthiest. That’s what we are all about.

Who are these products for? All skin types and all ages— especially dull, dehydrated skin. This line feels (and is) truly unisex, and I would think very appealing to men with the black luxe packaging. If you have dry skin, try spritzing the toner on top of the masks. For uber dry skin, you may feel the need for an oil or cream on top. All these products are safe for the eye area, and should be used in the eye area. Makeup applies nicely on top.

How much is it? The three piece full size kit is $205 USD.  All items are 1.69oz. The 1A All-Day Mask is $89, the 1A Overnight Mask is $109, and the toner is $55.

Where can I find it? In the states, at SpaceNK (in store or online) and through the Allies of Skin website.

Whats NOT in it:  silicones, mineral oil, petrochemicals, parabens, sulfates, GMOs. triclosan, DEA/TEA, alcohols, phthalates, fragrances or dyes. Vegan and 100% cruelty free. 

Texture and Smell: The toner is a mist liquid which dries quickly, has a mild fresh rose scent from the rosewater, which takes about 10 minutes to fully dissipate. The AM mask feels more like a thick serum, has no scent and dries soft but radiant. The PM mask has mild herbaceous scent, is slightly more moisturizing then the PM, but no tackiness or stickiness, and also dries soft and matte. 



  • Tones and refines pores.
  • Helps balances skin’s PH levels. 
  • Soothes and calms stressed skin. 
  • Provides antibacterial protection. 
  • Provides a heavy dose of healing hydration.
  • Reduces non-inflammatory acne lesions by 42.7% in 28 days.

Aqua (Water), Rosa Centifolia Flower Water, Polysorbate 20, Propanediol, Gluconolactone, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Lactobacillus Ferment, Deuterium Oxide, Niacinamide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Ergothioneine (L), Phenyl t-Butylnitrone (Spin Trap), Rosa Damascena Flower Oil, CocodimoniumHydroxypropyl Silk Amino Acids, JuniperusCommunis (Juniper Berry) Fruit Oil, Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Extract, Citrus AurantiumDulcis (Orange) Callus Culture Extract, Cymbopogon Martini (Palmarosa) Oil, CucumisSativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, CucumisSativus (Cucumber) Seed Oil, Glycerin, Colloidal Silver, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Chrysin, Glutamylamidoethyl Imidazole, Steareth-20, Xanthan Gum, Acetyl Tributyl Citrate, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Hydroxide.



  • De-puffs and tightens skin.
  • Hydrates and repairs tired, worn-out skin. 
  • Increases natural production of collagen and elastin.
  • Soothes skin while reducing redness and calming inflammation.
  • Reinforces skin’s barrier and reduces Transepidermal Water Loss (TEWL).
  • Protects and purifies skin against pollution, heavy metals and cigarette smoke.
  • 36% reduction of non-inflammatory acne lesions (closed and open comedones) after 4 weeks of daily use.
  • Nutrient-rich reservoir that plumps skin with healing moisture and nutrients throughout the day with over 35 powerful actives.

Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Butylene Glycol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Caffeine, Acrylamide/Sodium Acryloyldimethyltaurate Copolymer, Cetearyl Olivate, Squalane, Galactoarabinan, Palmitoyl Tripeptide-38, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Ceramide 2, Moringa Pterygosperma Seed Extract, Cassia Angustifolia Seed Polysaccharide, Crocus Chrysanthus Bulb Extract, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Extract, Polygonum Cuspidatum (Giant Knotweed Extract) Extract, Opuntia Vulgaris (Cactus) Extract, Sodium Hyaluronate (L), Hyaluronic Acid, Vigna Aconitifolia Seed Extract, Gardenia Jasminoides Callus Culture, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Callus Culture Extract, Niacinamide, 3-O-Ethyl Ascorbic Acid, Sphingolipids, Phospholipids, Astaxanthin, Vaccinium Angustifolium (Blueberry) Fruit Extract, Phenylethyl Resorcinol, Madecassoside, Phenyl t-Butylnitrone (Spin Trap), Ergothioneine (L), Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Oil, Allantoin, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice Powder, Honey (Mel), Bisabolol (L-alpha), Tocopheryl Acetate (D-alpha), Panthenol (D), Sodium PCA, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Chrysin, Glutamylamidoethyl Imidazole, Lecithin, Lysophosphatidic Acid, Lysolecithin, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Aphanizomenon Flos-Aquae Powder, Sorbitan Olivate, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Oil, Isohexadecane, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, Potassium Hydrolyzed Polygamma-Glutamate, Ethylhexylglycerin, Tribehenin, Acacia Senegal Gum, PEG-10 Rapeseed Sterol, PPG-2 Hydroxethyl Cocamide, Steareth-20, Polysorbate 80, Polysorbate 20, Carbomer, Hydroxypropyl Cyclodextrin, Xanthan Gum, O-cymen-5-OL, Sodium Citrate, Citric Acid, Tetrasodium EDTA, Acetyl Tributyl Citrate, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol.



  • Brightens dull, lifeless skin. 
  • Speeds up cellular renewal rate.
  • Nourishes dehydrated, stressed skin. 
  • Protects skin from dehydrating conditions. 
  • Stimulates the production of collagen and elastin.
  • Anti-glycation protection to maintain fresh, supple skin. 
  • Reduces non-inflammatory acne lesions by 67.2% in 28 days.
  • Ameliorates the appearance of acne, hyper-pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles. 
  • Nutrient-rich reservoir that harnesses the skin’s most optimal repair period to heal and rejuvenate stressed, problematic skin — improving pore size, radiance and skin texture.

Aqua (Water), Glycerin, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Propanediol, Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil (Organic), Sodium Acrylates Copolymer, Hydrolyzed Candida Saitoana Extract, Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate, Albizia Julibrissin Bark Extract, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Galactoarabinan, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Caprooyl Tetrapeptide-3, Cassia Angustifolia Seed Polysaccharide, Sodium Hyaluronate (L), Oxycoccus Palustris (Arctic Cranberry) Seed Oil, Rubus Chamaemorus (Cloud Berry) Seed Oil, Niacinamide, Withania Somnifera (Indian Ginseng) Root Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Callus Culture Extract, Retinal (Retinaldehyde), Pterostilbene, Ellagic Acid, Phenyl t-Butylnitrone (Spin Trap), Ergothioneine (L), Glutathione (L), Mirabilis Jalapa Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, N-Hydroxysuccinimide, Chrysin, Glutamylamidoethyl Imidazole, Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract, Lavandula Hybrida (Lavendin) Oil, Pentylene Glycol, Butylene Glycol, Cyclodextrin, Caprylyl Glycol, Steareth-20, Citric Acid, Xanthan Gum, Dextran, Acetyl Tributyl Citrate, Potassium Sorbate, Phenoxyethanol.

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