The Streicher sisters—makeup artist Jenn, hairstylist Ashley, and brow guru Kristie—share their insights on the world of natural beauty.
We Streichers hail from Northern California, which should give you an idea of where we stand on natural beauty. Although the term means something slightly different to each of us—it could be breathing fresh forest air on a hike in Big Sur, using paraben-free products, or letting our brows (or grays!) grow—our shared philosophy is that beauty is best when you embrace what your mama gave you.
That said, we’re not here to judge: One woman’s Botox is another woman’s bee venom therapy, but given the opportunity, we revel in taking care of ourselves the natural way. Read on for our favorite natural beauty secrets.
The Streicher Sisters
Jenn Streicher, makeup artist
To be honest, I used to cringe whenever I heard talk of natural beauty products. There just weren’t a lot of good ones on the market. Luckily, that has changed a lot in recent years—it’s much easier to get behind a trend when there are quality options available. It’s great not to put toxins on your skin! That said, I still haven’t found a natural deodorant that works...
NATURAL BEAUTY IS ___________.
Looking amazing and feeling confident without a ton of makeup.
THE REAL NO-MAKEUP MAKEUP
I think when you eat well you feel better, but do I also think eating greasy French fries will make you automatically break out? I don’t know—I’m just not that person. Keeping your skin really clean is more my speed. One of the most important things you can do is invest in a really good cleanser, like the Tata Harper Regenerating one. Achieving luminous beauty looks is easiest when you start with great skin.
Vegan, eco-friendly brushes have come a long way—for years they were too hard and stiff, and just couldn’t do what real hair brushes could. Now there are a lot of great options—Hourglass’s vegan brushes are so soft you can’t tell the difference. I sometimes find them even better—especially for foundation—as the bristles don’t end up absorbing the product.
Water plays a huge role in health and beauty, and it’s super important to drink a lot of it, especially when traveling. You’ll also want to invest in a really good moisturizer. I love Tammy Fender’s products, especially her Quintessential Serum and Spontaneous Recovery cream, and Vintner’s Daughter serum. I hesitate to put the serum on clients before makeup (even though I do so on myself because my skin is so dry), as it’s pretty rich and can sit on top of skin, but I definitely recommend it for a nighttime treatment. Another natural line I’ve been digging is Herbivore—they make an amazing coconut bath soak that’s not oily at all, but makes skin feel nice and moisturized.
LET IT GROW
My hair naturally has a lot of gray in it, and I colored it for 15 years before I decided to let it grow out last year. I think dyeing is probably not great for you, but my decision was largely due to laziness—I was just sick of having to maintain it. I started thinking, Why do women color our hair? Why is it okay for men to go gray but taboo for women? At first I researched ways to grow out the gray gracefully—color it a little gray, go lighter—but at the end of the day I decided that defeated the whole purpose, and I did it the old-fashioned way. It’s hardest the first couple of months, and then you don’t even notice. I just keep trimming the ends constantly—two more cuts to go until all the color is gone!
ASHLEY STREICHER, HAIRSTYLIST
Natural hair means letting your texture shine—and learning what it will do for you. After all, your body grew that hair for a reason. When you begin weeding out bad habits (too much heat styling, too many chemicals, overwashing) your hair will start to thank you and do nice things for you. Each person’s hair is unique, so everyone’s “thing” will be different.
NATURAL BEAUTY IS _________.
Working with what you have.
It’s very hard to find green hair products that actually do their job. Don’t even bother with natural hairsprays—they are generally wet and heavy and sticky and gross. For better or worse, you need the aerosol and alcohol to keep it light and airy. Same goes for dry shampoo and texture spray. But for everyday hair I love REVERIE Milk, which is the best lotion for damp hair when you want to air-dry. They also make, in my opinion, the cleanest, most effective shampoo and conditioner.
I take a whole slew of women’s vitamins as well as probiotics and chlorella every day, twice a day—when I don’t, my hair and my skin suffer tremendously. I go to an integrative wellness center up in Agoura Hills, Be Hive of Healing, for all my vitamins and sometimes a vitamin drip. They’ll run blood tests to tell you what nutrients you’re lacking. I also just started seeing a spine specialist who is really helping me with my neck (years of cutting hair have had a major impact) and doing adjustments and rehabilitation on my posture. The treatments help me sleep better, and I have more energy.
A few more of my natural beauty secrets: Jenn turned me on to Tammy Fender’s skincare line when I was going through some hard skin times. I developed rosacea because of stress and maybe using the wrong products for my sensitive, acne-prone skin. This line is so clean and doesn’t cause any reaction in me, but it still feels luxurious. Not to sound like a total hippie, but being outside in nature and spending time in the elements is a real beautifier. Hiking and breathing clean air does something to your body that no product can. I also believe in drinking tons of water, and I have giant glass containers of Mountain Valley Spring Water delivered monthly.
Kristie Streicher, brow artist
I really believe in beauty from the inside out. The products you use are important, but what’s you’re putting into your body counts double. Natural beauty is also a huge part of the way I approach brows. Everyone looks best with the brows they were given. Unfortunately, trends have gotten the best of most women’s brows over the years, and they are often difficult to grow back. (You can also follow my step-by-step process for going back to your brows’ roots, and what to expect while growing them out, here.)
NATURAL BEAUTY IS ___________.
Totally embracing the way you look.
NATURAL BEAUTY ESSENTIALS
One of my new favorite natural beauty brands is ILIA, which makes organic lip crayons in beautiful colors. The tinted lip conditioner in Nobody’s Baby adds just enough shine and color to look like you’re wearing nothing but feels really good on your lips. They also happen to make the best natural mascara. I also love the Ash and Ember Eye Soot in Golden Age from Ritual de Fille: long-lasting, sheer lid washes that add just enough pigment to the lid to bring out your eye color.
I also really like RMS Beauty, Rosemary Swift’s line. The sheer “Un” Cover-Up concealer has the perfect finish—it’s not too dewy and not too matte. The Buriti Bronzer and Lip-2-Cheek in Smile are also part of my daily repertoire—they’re made from organic coconut oil, which is perfect for drier skin types like mine.
In addition to a traditional multivitamin with DHA and omega-3 oil, I really like the WelleCo Super Elixir. It’s an amazing alkalizing greens supplement that includes Chinese herbs, digestive enzymes, and members of the maitake mushroom family. I add 2 teaspoons of this and the Nourishing Protein (brown rice and pea protein) to 6 ounces of water and 6 ounces of almond milk and make a smoothie. It has raw Peruvian cacao so my brain thinks it’s a chocolate milkshake, but it’s really a super shake!
I like the loose tea blends from Teavana—Mint Majesty (spearmint, peppermint, and lemon verbena) is my favorite. This is great after dinner and before bed. I also like it as a sun tea, which I make by mixing purified water, lemon or orange slices, and loose tea in a large glass container, setting it in the sun for 2 to 4 hours, and straining. Serve it lightly sweetened with coconut sugar over ice, with extra lemon.
Time is an issue for me (as it is for most of us), so I subscribe to a weekly service called The Purple Carrot that delivers premeasured fresh ingredients with recipes for delicious vegan meals. When I go out, I love Inaka in LA—the clean and simple Inaka Plate with seasonal vegetables is my favorite. I truly believe in their basic philosophy of maintaining health and well-being by eating a simple, balanced diet of in-season vegetables with grains and protein from fish.
Brow guru Kristie Streicher’s step-by-step guide to restoring overplucked brows to glory.