HOLY WHOLE FOODS: The Best Beauty Products At The Store I Never Buy Groceries At

I don't understand "natural" beauty and haven't bought groceries in months. But here's some stuff you'll want to spend your money on anyway.
Publish date:
June 5, 2013
shoppables, groceries, body lotion, natural beauty, Whole Foods

I haven’t been grocery shopping in over two months. Please tell me you’ve gone longer.

Last weekend, I flew to Southern California from NYC to become a resident -- I suppose, although I still don’t have a car, have been staying at my boyfriend’s dad’s house, and half of my stuff is packed in boxes probably somewhere in Nebraska en route to his mom’s.

Also my boyfriend just walked into this very room, where I’m trying to write, with his wang hanging out.

“GET OUT OF HERE," I shouted at him. “I’M TRYING TO WRITE.”

“I’M LEAVING! I’M TRYING TO GET READY!” He threw up his arms, Donald Duck-ing it.

God, we really need an apartment.

I know it’s normal to depend on eating out for every meal when you move. When I first got to NYC a little more than three years ago, I couch surfed until I sublet an apartment and dropped fifteen pounds within a month as I subsisted on a $15 sandwich from Olive’s once a day. (My internship was in Soho at the time -- and I was overwhelmed and had no idea what I was doing.)

Eventually, I felt settled, less stressed (well, relative to the first few months), realized eggs and spinach were the most inexpensive foods with the most nutrition, and blah blah blah, my diet got a little more healthy and normal.

Prior to actually getting here, though, I bid adieu to my life in New York by eating around the city like I was never going to dine there again. There was Freemans, Panna II, Pies 'n’ Thighs, and, FUCK YES, there was Roberta’s.

All my friendship-family farewell gatherings were at restaurants. And I felt the incessant need to start every day with the bacon-egg-and-cheese, for one friend from CA warned me it’s not a “thing” here.

Every time I groaned that my body hated me for eating out so much and not having simpler foods at home, I was reassured that, “It’s fine, you’re moving!” So I had outward influences justifying putting off my newfound healthy lifestyle with MORE PIZZA as well.

Whatever, it was delicious. And now, like most things, I keep reminding myself that it’s temporary.

I wish this was a round up inspired by the grocery stores I haven’t been shopping at. But, um, this is really just a way for me to influence you to shop at Whole Foods’ beauty section FOR IT IS SICK.

(I thought about doing a “natural beauty” post, but natural beauty is so confusing! Like, what does “99% Natural,” like one of my bottles of lotions is labeled, MEAN? And I just can’t abide by going au natural beauty-wise. So why would I push it?)

It’s easy for me to drop $70 on beauty products -- what I normally spend at Trader Joe’s for 1.5 weeks’ worth of frozen food I heat up in the oven, or exactly one meal at Reynards -- in one haul at Whole Foods. So, sorry in advance:

1) Aura Cacia Almond Oil, $5.75

The only thing I know-know about "natural" beauty is that oils are NATURAL, since they're sapped from nuts and fruits and things that are from the earth. (Earth = Natural, RIGHT?) I use coconut oil and olive oil for hair masks and moisturizers and cooking -- when I actually do cook, ha. You can get those from most grocery stores. For more oils, Whole Foods has a massive selection, like this sweet almond oil from Aura Cacia.

With vitamins A and E, almond oil's great for your hair and nails, and is more lightweight than other oils. (However, it is still an OIL, thus making it oily.) I rub a pea-size amount between my palms at night, cover my hands, and push it into my cuticles to make my nails healthy.

Whole Foods also has a ton of essential oils that you can wear as fragrance -- either one by itself, or by mixing a combo of them. I've mentioned I love lavender oil for my wrists as aromatherapy before bed. Perhaps let's get more into this subject more another time, though?

2) Jason’s Cocoa Butter Lotion, $8.99

Cocoa butter's an acquired scent, for sure, and maybe June isn't the right time to be promo-ing a thick moisturizer. Jason's Cocoa Butter makes my skin so effing supple though, I cannot NOT include it in this list. When I use it as a full-body moisturizer, I feel like I go through a tube quickly (like, within a month), so there's your warning there. Still, it's so GOOD.

3) Hard Night Good Morning Eye Cream, $38.99

As I have the most sensitive delicate princess skin, lots of eye creams sting the shit out of my eyes and face. This one from Hard Night, Good Morning doesn't sting a single bit (HARK THE ANGELS SING!). Plus, it comes in this lush container that looks like it came from a department store, which I am personally afraid of.

The product itself is thick, so it sets in all your little lines -- I use it at night, and in the morning before I put on makeup. Its slight yellow tint also conceals darkness.

4) Alba Botanica Aloe and Green Tea Oil-Free Moisturizer, $19.49

THIS is the perfect moisturizer to show you for the summer -- it's an incredibly light face lotion that can go on before your makeup in the morning without making you look like a grease ball. I have dry/zitty combination skin that taunts me constantly, but Alba Botanica's moisturizer doesn't cause me to break out, so hooray for that. The tub lasts for more than a few months, too.

What are your favorite products in Whole Foods' beauty section? Dr. Bronner's soap? And what's the longest time you've gone without grocery shopping? (Someone in NYC who I was getting a farewell pizza with says her roommate hasn't done it in 6 months. OH, NYC.)

Follow me on Twitter: @caitlinthornton.