Add a little ‘luxe’ to your eco-beauty holiday gift list


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Eco beauty has evolved from the days of that one dusty bottle of hemp shampoo in the back of the natural food store. Cosmetic companies are upping the ante with beautiful packaging, innovative concepts and a little bit of sparkle and shine to glam up natural health and beauty. Luckily, we have the scoop on some amazing choices for giving — and, ahem, receiving — this holiday season.


Lush life

Lush Handmade Cosmetics has created products, such as the ingenious bath bomb and solid shampoo bars, that eliminate packaging, reduce waste and take advantage of nature’s goodness to deliver fun, effective bath and beauty items. Their latest achievement is a line of eco-friendly cosmetics.

Pros: Variety! Lush has everything from Toothy Tabs solid toothpaste — which, by the way, is a total lifesaver for midday cotton mouth — to Bubblebeard, a mustache-shaped solid bubble bath. They also have a variety of prepackaged gift sets for easy shopping. Customizing a gift? Try their reusable knot wraps, including the adorable Fairyshiki. Check out the spearmint- and salt-scented unisex line of products, Dirty, which includes a killer shave cream, body spray, soap and more!

Cons: Lush uses sulfates and parabens in many of their items, which some natural beauty pros consider a no-no. Don't fret! A quick look online or in their catalog, The Lush Times, will give you the ingredients for each and every product. There are plenty of sulfate- and preservative-free items, such as their cult classic skin cleanser, Angels on Bare Skin, a heavenly blend of lavender, rose, chamomile, almonds and kaolin that gently cleanses and renews dull skin.

Little luxe gift idea: Secret Santa Gift, featuring Honey I Washed the Kids soap and Cinders bath bomb, $11.95

Lotta luxe gift idea: Lush Legends, a 28-piece collection of Lush favorites; $229.95


Home-grown decadence

Tata Harper Skincare embodies the spirit of high-quality natural care that merges nature and science with beautiful results. The products are all created using original formulas with plants and herbs from Tata's own farm in Vermont where the entire line is produced. Talk about luxury!

Pros: Tata Harper's line is undoubtedly the most luxurious of the bunch. Every product is 100% natural and contains simple ingredients — such as witch hazel, chamomile and rose — to great effect, plumping and hydrating parched skin, a big concern in these cold months. The packaging is sleek and will lend an old-school apothecary feel to any bathroom.

Cons: All that wizardry and beauty come at a price. The Hydrating Floral Essence starts at $65; the Restorative Eye Cream is a whopping $90. The good news is you can try the products before you commit via Tata Harper’s Deluxe Beauty set, containing miniature versions of seven items that should last you about a week or so, for $65.

Little luxe gift idea: Jet Set Survival Kit, a three-step, sanity-saving aromatherapy and hydration kit for travelers, $25

Lotta luxe gift idea: Any of the Max Results sets, $540


Rub-a-dub, Red Hook style

Saipua, located in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn, N.Y., is a hot commodity in the bridal market for their unique, organic floral arrangements using wildflowers and seasonal blooms, but the real gem is their handmade collection of soaps.

Pros: The soaps perfume your skin for hours with gorgeous scents, such as the woodsy vetiver, calming lavender oatmeal and revitalizing coffee mint. The packaging is lovely, making them the perfect hostess gift or stocking stuffer. With the exception of one larger bar, each soap is only 10 bucks!

Cons: Soap and candles are all Saipua offers, unless you want to create a floral arrangement for a special someone’s next big event.

Little luxe gift idea: Saipua soap, $10

Lotta luxe gift idea: Complement your soap choice with a soy candle, $34

Check out each company’s websites for locations or to order directly from the online store.

Here’s to a beautiful holiday season!