It took 5 days to change the way I think about what I need.

Over the past few days I have been in Yellowstone National Park, which is INSANELY idyllic, think buffalo roaming next to your car.

I have been camping, something that I have only done once before, and it was wonderful. Waking up next to a brook, the cool morning breeze running through the tent, waking up and meditating as the sun rises, it has been truly fantastic.

One of my favorite parts of this experience has been eating organic vegetables from a farmers market in Montana, cooking over an open fire, and foraging for and identifying edible plants. Things like pineapple weed, mint, and sage are everywhere. All of my compost has been contained in an airtight stainless steel container. I have used all stainless steel eating utensils and have Β washed them using boiling water over a fire and at a local gas station.
On top of that I have been doing a few things that I have never done before:
I have not showered in a week. This is crazy for me. I shower every day and wash my hair every 2-3 days. It is just something I have adopted from living in a city, I never truly felt clean. But in the fresh air, despite being covered in dirt, I felt clean. I washed myself two times, once in a gas station bathroom where I refreshed mah pits, and once when I took a dip in a river where I also used river mud to exfoliate.

I have worn the same 5 items of clothing over and over. This is also crazy for me. In NYC I walk around so much that sometimes I feel that I have to change my clothes just to feel like I am not caked in exhaust. With the fresh air, my clothes smell clean and have a hint of campfire scent, that’s it.
I have not worn makeup for 2 weeks. Hold. The. Phone. Yes, two weeks. I am a daily makeup wearer. Every day I put on some RMS concealer if I need it on a blemish, and some RMS blush. However, I’ve noticed in two week of not wearing makeup, my skin has changed. I don’t need any concealer and I don’t need any blush. I don’t know if it is the fresh air or being out of the city or not showering as much or a combination of everything plus witchcraft, but my skin has never been so great. All I have done is splash my face with water and moisturized with the same oils I normally use, argan and calendula. I’m going to continue on this makeupless journey and see what happens.

This experience has truly helped me to re-evaluate how I live and what I need. Upon my return to NYC I have a feeling that I will be selling a lot of what I have and downsizing even more than I have in the past.


  1. Dear Lauren,
    I'm from Germany, so please excuse my bad english!
    I love reading your blog and you really are an inspiration for me!
    After trying your "Whipped Body Butter" I kept asking myself what you're using for the skin in your face. In this post you write "Argan and Calendula", so do you mix it or do you use each of it pure?
    It would be great if you could tell me!
    Keep going on with your way (and your blog ;-)) it's really a great thing!
    Greetings from Germany,

  2. The 'makeupless journey' is quite a good one – I haven't worn makeup for many years now, possibly a decade, except for special occasions (once I couldn't even be bothered putting my face on for a wedding). It is great for the skin, that's for sure. Enjoy – and keep us posted on how you get on with it! πŸ™‚

  3. I don't think I could stand not washing me hair for a week (the grease! ew…) but I am incredibly jealous of your lake and river dipping. I'm feeling a bit of wanderlust approaching…

  4. hey lauren i love your blog. i want to try life zero waste to but i'm just 14 yers old do you have any tips

  5. love your blog post from yellowstone. I totally agree with re-thinking what you "need". i do hope that you are wearing sunscreen out there. it's so important. i will continue to follow and be inspired!

  6. Just so you know, that is actually a bison πŸ™‚ I can't wait til I visit North America. Such a beautiful country.

  7. Hey, you've been in my neck o' the woods! I live 80 miles north of Yellowstone and we get down there frequently. (Oh, and Stephanie, although technically it is a bison, the two words are used interchangeably around these parts.) I too have been on the no-make-up journey for many years, or perhaps it has actually been most of my life, since I really used it for only a small portion of my life. It is far more common "out here" than back in NY (which is where I'm from originally). I am much older than you are, and you are so naturally lovely! You look great and if you hadn't mentioned it I would not have looked at your pictures and thought anything about make-up one way or the other. I am far from zero waste, but have made great strides in the past number of years and love blogs such as yours to keep me motivated on the journey. Thanks and happy trails!!!

  8. This blog post made me laugh! I was really surprised by an earlier blog post when you showed how many changes of clothes and pairs of shoes you were bringing on the trip! Who needs that many pairs of shoes I thought! I live simply, on a 36 foot sailing boat, with my husband and two daughters. We don't need much to live an awesome life. Recently my children and I had to fly from Portugal to the UK for an indefinite period of time – possibly up to four months – and we packed all the clothes and shoes we needed in one carry-on piece of luggage. Anything extra that we need I can pick up at charity shops – and return them for resale when the time comes to return to Portugal. I haven't worn make-up for years. Back in March I was interviewed on TV and a few people commented on FB that my makeup looked 'fantastic'. Truth is, I wasn't wearing any, just a small dab of that TV concealer to stop the shine!

    I'm really enjoying your blog, and have picked up some great tips to further reduce my use of plastic when I grocery shop..simple but effective ideas that leave me thinking 'Duh, why didn't I think of that before?'


  9. Lauren I absolutely bloody love your blog. I've always thought that I lived a fairly sustainable lifestyle, until I watched a video in which you were interviewed about your lifestyle and I realised that I wasn't even close. I'm so wasteful. It's like the glass has shattered now, you've inspired me to try and try to be as waste free as possible.

  10. Can't wait to see what you de clutter when you get back. Hopefully you will do a post on that. Thanks for being a great inspiration.

  11. Super happy to hear you've come to these conclusions on your journey! I just finished a road trip around Canada and USA, and stopped a lot of habits I continue to knock while back in Toronto. Wearing makeup everyday is one of them. You go girl! Enjoy the lessons the fresh open air has to offer!

  12. It's funny – I'm ready to go home and downsize as well, but coming from the entirely opposite experience of staying in my parents' super-cluttered home for a good part of the summer! Love reading about your experiences. Thanks for showing how a transition to a no-waste lifestyle is way easier (and much more calming) than most of us think it is!

  13. Growing up we camped at Yellowstone Park every summer. We did the same, no shower, minimal clothing etc. I remember it like it was yesterday – sounds like you had a wonderful time!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *