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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Non-food vegan reviews: Arbonne

I'd like to start this blog by thanking all of my blog followers and loyal readers. I have loved writing about my vegan experiences and hope it has inspired you to just give it a try, even if only for one day. I often wonder exactly who is out there reading (people besides my few close friends that are here for moral support). Turns out there are others out there that are actually reading this which is so exciting to me! After one of my many Darbster reviews, I received an e-mail from, Nancy, a district manager for Arbonne International. My first reaction was excitement because I was so happy to receive a message from someone I didn't know who was actually reading my blog. And my second reaction was even more excitement because Nancy offered to give me some samples to try out so that I could review them on my blog. How cool is that?!?

Before I get into the tofu and potatoes of my review, I'll just quickly say a few things about Arbonne. Before Nancy messaged me, I had never heard of Arbonne.  Arbonne offers 100% vegan-certified beauty, health & wellness products that are NEVER tested on animals and they do not contain any animal by-products (which is extremely rare in the world of cosmetics).  Using animal-friendly products has always been very important to me, however it's becoming nearly impossible to avoid buying the "mean products."  You may see the words "final product not tested on animals," but that doesn't mean that the company doesn't test on animals at all, they just don't test the "final product."  So Arbonne makes it easy for us and doesn't test or use animals in any capacity.  And that's just the beginning.  Their products are made up of premium botanical ingredients that are 100% pure and totally safe for your skin, and the Earth.  I think when it comes to shopping for cruelty-free products, the eco-friendly part may be just an afterthought.  Not with Arbonne.  Check out the Arbonne Green Commitment!

I'm going to start out with some skincare products that I tried. Nancy gave me six samples from
the Arbonne FC5 line. FC stands for the fresh cell technology, and the 5 is for the nutrients that are extracted from 5 different fruits and vegetables.    I tried the following face products: Hydrating Cleanser + Refresher, Nurturing Day Lotion with SPF 20, Moisturizing Night Creme, and the Hydrating Eye Creme.  All of these products have a lovely, natural, and "fruity" smell.  And by fruity I don't mean too sweet or perfumey.  They are all very pure smelling.  The cleanser has fresh strawberry cell extracts.  You can tell based on the thick texture and consistency of these products that they are very concentrated and a little goes a long way.  I loved that the Day Lotion, made with fresh kiwi cell extracts, had an SPF 20.  I have found it hard to find lotions with sunscreen in them that aren't too greasy or cause added shine throughout the day.  This lotion absorbed into my skin very well and was not greasy at all.  The Night Creme has fresh mango cell extracts and also absorbed quite well, just somewhat slower.  Most night creams tend to be thicker to keep your skin hydrated throughout the night.  It went on nicely and wasn't uncomfortable to sleep in at all.  (Plus is makes your pillows smell like a very fancy spa-- bonus!) The Eye Creme, also containing kiwi extracts, was equally as nice.  Nancy also gave me the following FC5 body products: Invigorating Body Cleanser and Conditioning Body Moisturizer. The cleanser was light a fresh and not drying at all. I felt like it really did do it's job by cleansing my skin and again, the smell was lovely. I really liked the Body Moisture too. It contains fresh pumpkin cell extracts, however it does not smell like pumpkins. It has the same light and fresh smell that all the FC5 products have. I moisturized my legs in the morning and they were still soft and smooth by the end of the day. Overall, I was thrilled with the results of these products. 

At 28 years old, I still have the occasional breakout and blemishes so I was definitely interested in the Arbonne Clear Advantage products. The key ingredients are Salicylic acid (1%), alfalfa, dandelion leaf, licorice root, peppermint, orange peel, mallow flower, wild pansy, hops extract, vitamins A, C and E.  I have tried SO many products like this over the years. Some have worked as far as eliminating the blemish, but it usually leaves your skin somewhat dry. Once again, a little goes a long way with the Clarifying Wash. As soon as you squeeze it from the tube you can tell how thick and concentrated it is. It's clear and does not contain any of those harsh, sandpaper-like scrubbers. Since I use a Clarisonic, I don't prefer the little exfoliating scrubber bits. Another thing I liked about this product is that it never left my skin looking red or inflamed. I have very sensitive skin, so a lot of acne-related products tend to make me look a bit red. Not the case with this one.

I was lucky enough to be able to try a couple of cosmetic items, too. The makeup primer is the BEST makeup primer I have ever used. I am generally not a fan of makeup primers because it's just yet another thing to smear on your face and it can tend to feel heavy. This is the lightest, most silky primer. It doesn't really have any kind of scent, which I like because it doesn't compete or clash with the scents of the face wash and lotion. It creates the perfect, super-thin barrier between your face and the makeup, not that the makeup would hurt your skin, but it may absorb into your skin throughout the day.
I mentioned to Nancy that I am a lip gloss junkie. I always have at least two or three lip glosses with me at any given time. I tried out all the Lip Polish colors and my favorite was the Posh color. It's a light, nude-pink color. I think it looks great with any type of eye makeup because it's so soft and neutral. It's also not sticky or slimy and most importantly, it's not glittery! I cannot stand when cosmetic companies put shimmer and glitter in their lip glosses. Arbonne's gloss, which contains mango butter, aloe, sunflower oil, and vitamins A and E, gives you a subtle shine without looking like a pre-teen on her way to a Miley Cyrus concert. And I loved the fact that it wasn't flavored. I don't know why so many lip glosses are flavored. I'm not eating my lip gloss, are you? And I also don't need flavoring on my mouth at all times. So thank you, Arbonne, for making a great, adult lip gloss. I am definitely going to ordering it in Posh!

And finally, I asked to try the Arbonne Protein Shakes from the Arbonne Essentials line of products. Before going vegan, I occasionally would drink a protein shake before a work out. And let me tell you, when it comes to protein shakes, all are NOT created equal. Many of them are just not pleasant tasting at all and some contain milk and whey products making them no good for vegans. I was very surprised and pleased with Arbonne's protein shake. I tasted both the chocolate and vanilla flavors. They didn't have that gross, chalky texture and taste. They were very milkshake-like and just yummy! I love to drink them before my workouts during the week. They are just the ticket to cure my late afternoon sweet tooth and they don't leave me feeling too full or bloated. Another plus, they contain calcium AND folic acid, both of which are very important to women's health. I love these protein shakes!

And since I love to share-the-love when possible, I told Claudia that I was in touch with Nancy from Arbonne. Nancy was nice enough to let Claudia take home the Arbonne RE9 Advanced anti-aging system for a few days. Claudia reported back with satisfaction. She loved the citrusy scent and liked that the Day Creme had a non-greasy SPF 20. These products, like the ones that I tried, are also very concentrated so a little bit goes a long way. I know I have said that a lot in this review but I think it's important because you are making an investment in high-quality products so it's nice to know that you are getting more than just a few uses from them.  PS- Arbonne doesn't forget about the guys!  There are skincare and wellness products for men, too!  There are also products for kids and babies!

I love everything I tried from Arbonne and will definitely be purchasing some products. If you would like additional information on any of these products, or if you would like to know what else is available (like vitamins!), check out the Arbonne website and contact Nancy Kumpulainen (561-254-6519 or  Also check out

Thanks you so much, Nancy, for the awesome opportunity to include these great vegan products in my blog!  I will be spreading the word for sure!


  1. My mum has good skin. So I just briefly took one of her SKII ( to use, which I assume is a moisturizer. It's good man I tell you! She gave me a small bottle of eye cream before but the effects weren't that great and I stopped using. But my mum's moisturizer is good! I can feel it reacting once I applied it

  2. As a new mom I am more concerned with the toxicity of my cosmetics than ever... I kiss my little one and snuggle all day. It's refreshing to see natural, cruelty-free products that actually work! Here's hoping companies like these put the "toxic" ones out of business!

  3. I'll be looking into these products. Thanks for sharing your results. I would probably have never heard of this company if it weren't for you. =)

  4. thank you for the review! has a arbonne consultant I am always looking for reviews :-)

  5. I love to see a fellow vegan blogger reviewing Arbonne. I agree 100% with your review...the products are so outstanding, and the results I'm finding are just as transformational and enjoyable as the changes I experienced when I first went vegan 3 years ago; if not more so. That is why I am an Arbonne Independent Consultant. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!
    Laura-Lea Vogel, Crazy Vegan Mommy

  6. The ingredients in the Arbonne products may be vegan but they are not all pure or safe in terms of toxicity and hazardous. If you research some of the product ingredients you will find plenty of them are chemicals and synthetic. Also, there are ingredients in their nutrition products that are not actually all that good for you (such as stevia which raises the blood sugar level without calories or fibre, which done repeatedly over time can eventually will cause adrenal burnout along with other health issues). Also I've seen 'natural flavours' listed as an ingredient in a few of their food products which covers anything from msg to chemicals enhanced to taste like the real thing. At first all of these products may produce visible results however the ill effects may not be noticed until it is too late.
    Their products advertising and mottos are definitely misleading.