WELLNESS

+ MORE, WELLNESS, SUSTAINABILITY

Sugaring

Sugaring at Sugared + Bronzed NYC

Sugaring at Sugared + Bronzed NYC

For the past couple of months I’ve been interested in sustainable beauty - and hair removal is a service often forgotten in this realm.

Traditional waxing vs. Sugaring

As I explain below, sugaring is more effective than traditional waxing, and that’s because of the main difference between them: the direction of hair removal.

Sugaring and traditional waxing are both hair removal essentially - hard wax uses a melted petrochemical paraffin based substance that is applied via a wooden stick, and sticks to hair and skin. Sugaring uses a natural paste made of sugar, lemon (citric acid) and water, which is applied to skin directly with a (gloved) hand and only sticks to the hair.

So, a heated and melted paraffin liquid vs. a candy looking sugar paste.

Sustainability

Traditional wax (hard wax) is made up of petrochemicals like paraffin wax, which does not easily or naturally break down in the environment.

So let’s think about this - you get a Brazilian wax and typically about 5-10 strips of hard wax is used and discarded, with a wooden application stick and gloves, you get this service every 4 weeks - that’s about 60-120 of each wax strips, nitrile gloves and wooden sticks per year, per client.

That’s a lot of waste on a large scale - and it is important we start to generally frame things in this way. It’s difficult to be sustainable and consider your impact in every part of your life - considering we have jobs, kids, pets, lives in general… so choosing simple things, like a better version of hair removal is the best way to minimize your impact without driving yourself crazy.

Sugaring is nearly zero waste - we toss only our 1 set of nitrile gloves, the bed linen and 2 cavi wipes per service - that’s nearly a quarter of the environmental impact of traditional waxing. Simple solutions…. and we’re making green living chic :)

Aside from the sustainability of sugaring, clients also prefer it because it’s great for sensitive skin.

Effectiveness + Skin Sensitivity

Clients choose sugaring over waxing for many reasons: sustainability, effectiveness, it’s less painful, and as a solution to wax reactions and sensitivity - overall it’s the best form of hair removal!

Traditional waxing methods tend to be less effective than sugaring. It is applied with the direction of growth, it sticks to skin and hair, then it’s removed against the direction of hair growth. This can lead to hair breakage, ingrown hairs, skin reactions and thicker grow back due to the root potentially not being removed. Generally, unless you have perfectly exfoliated skin and hair that isn’t prone to breakage, a lot will be left behind (albeit under the surface of the skin and not visible).

Sugaring is done differently because the natural paste doesn’t stick to skin, so we have to “mold” the paste into the hair to fully remove it. The paste is applied against the hair growth and then gently removed with the direction of growth, that’s what assure the entire hair with the root are removed. The direction of hair removal, the simple ingredient list, and the lack of heat are all factors that make sugaring more effective, and a great alternative for clients with sensitive skin.

After Care

For aftercare, it’s similar to any hair removal but keep in mind that if you have sensitive skin that you’ll want to assure products don’t have harsh ingredients or intense fragrance.

Below is a short guide, but essentially any time you remove hair and this have open follicles, you’ll want to avoid anything that can clog the pore (which leads to ingrowns!) or cause a reaction (like fragranced products and exfoliants) for 24 hrs.

For maintenance, we want to focus on getting the most effective hair removal. So you’ll want to keep your skin moisturized and we’ll exfoliated (since dry flakey skin can prevent hair from being removed or growing correctly).

I love using my nonclogging Tropical Body Serum daily after the shower, or if I have an ingrown I’ll mix earths fuller clay with the Botanical Soothing Gel and follow up the the cleaning and anti-inflammatory Cannabis Serum.

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Where can I get sugared?

So many places are popping up now that sugaring is becoming more popular. In NYC, I work at Sugared + Bronzed - the top spot for sugaring (and natural customized airbrush tans!). There are also a ton of DIY recipes for sugar paste - but proceed with caution because it’s essentially like making candy and that can be a bit difficult.

INGREDIENTS, PLANT REMEDIES, WELLNESS, + MORE

Aloe Gel D.I.Y.

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It’s July 5th and we’re all sunburned and exhausted - in NYC it’s a perfect cloudy and chilly day recovery day.

There are so many ways to use aloe…

Aloe vera is one of my favorite soothing plants, when I’ve really damaged my skin (sunburn, beach day, camping or if I have a reaction), if I’ve had stomach issues (indigestion, acid or ulcer pain), and when I get a dry irritated scalp - essentially, Aloe is a savior.

A list of it’s uses:

  1. Drink - Aloe is alkaline which helps to neutralize acidic foods in your stomach, and in your blood. It supports the stomach lining as well, helping to repair ulcers and prevent them from getting larger or more inflamed. Drinking aloe vera 1-2x per day for a week can help ease stomach ailments, or re-alkalize the body. Drink this when youre feeling sick, on a light detox or have ulcer pain. I like to add aloe gel to a chlorophyll slushie (ice + lemon + chlorophyll drop + aloe) or a green juice!

  2. Skin - For topical use, it’s gentle, anti-inflammatory, supports collagen production and it’s moisturizing. I add aloe to masks for repairing / calming / soothing, or as a topical moisturizer for the face + body, and it’s especially useful for healing cuts (only cuts that have already formed a dense scab!) - add it to the Soothing Botanical Gel Mask Base with green tea / matcha powder or spirulina for a post-beach day mask.

  3. Hair - My scalp gets super dry in the middle of summer and then again in the winter. I use an aloe based hair mask when there’s an extreme change in temperature, a sunburn or i’ve excessively used products that dry my scalp - or just to add extra moisture to my dry frizzy italian hair! Aloe soothes the scalp, repairs dead skin cells, and adds natural shine + moisture!

    I make a mask with aloe gel + rosemary + 5 drops black seed serum



D.I.Y. Aloe Vera Gel

  • Use the giant Aloe stalks you find in the grocery store - or use your own, but avoid tiny leaves since there won’t be too much of the fleshy middle in them!

  • Carefully cut / peel the top green layer off - be careful not to cut too deep into the flesh, the peel is very thin.

  • You can use a spoon to scoop out the flesh - or cut the bottom peel too - this will reveal the clear, goopy and slimy aloe flesh. This is the good stuff!

  • Toss all the goop into a blender / food processor and blend until a gel forms.

*** This is NOT preserved, so it will go back in about 1 week, refrigerated. You can freeze aloe into ice cubes and melt when you want to use them - or make herbal recovery packs! Recipe on those gems coming soon…






Food as Medicine, WELLNESS

Black Sesame + Coconut Smoothie

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Aside from the fact that I love everything black sesame (ice cream, mochi, bagels, soups, etc.) - I love this dark dreary smoothie for rainy days. And a while back, charcoal has a moment - and I’m just saying’, black sesame needs to replace it. Activated charcoal should never be consumed in the way it was promoted - it’s a medical grade ingredients that prevent absorption of toxins (or anything that you ate with it or previous to it), so needless to say… that was a dangerous trend.

We can get our fix for jet black smoothies another way - BLACK SESAME! Black sesame seeds are high in magnesium, protein, and calcium - this smoothie contains almost 10 grams of protein!

So, not only are they healthy, but they are bomb tasting, too.

 
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BLACK SESAME + COCONUT SMOOTHIE


1 Frozen Banana

1/2 cup black sesame tahini - or black sesame cereal - or black sesame seeds

1-2 cups Coconut Milk

3 tbs Local Maple Syrup *you can sub this for honey, sugar, etc

*blend + add sesame and coconut on top + serve*



I’ve linked all of the ingredients below - my favorite way to make this is with Black Tahini because you can use the tahini as you would in any other recipe, it’s shelf stable, easy to use and it’s pretty :)




Click on the images below for a direct link to amazon!




WELLNESS, PLANT REMEDIES, + MORE

Ashwagandha + Hibiscus Cold Remedy Tea

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It’s officially March - and in New York City that means it’s the last mass flu / cold / sickness - we’re all feeling a bit crappy. The weather goes up into the 60’s and plummets into a sub zero freeze, then snows and it starts all over.

This type of scenario calls for a vitamin rich adaptogenic + hydrating tea, and for me, it has to be something tart that I’ll actually drink throughout the day. I love this blend because it’s hydrating, full of vitamin C and it boosts the immune system while chillin you out.

I love the mix of Hibiscus, Ashwagandha and Rosehip because I can bear to drink it while I’m sick and it’s loaded with all the good stuff. Scroll down to the bottom for all of the benefits :)

HIBISCUS + ASHWAGANDHA + ROSE HIP TEA

COLD BLEND #1

Materials:

  • Big Jar of Filtered Water - I recommend the Berkey Filter if you’re struggling to find a filter!

  • Muslin Bag or Tea Strainer

  • Ball Jar with Cap (if using a muslin bag - it helps keep it in place!

Recipe:

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PLANT REMEDIES, WELLNESS, + MORE, INGREDIENTS

Cannabis - Hemp Seed Oil + CBD Oil

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My famous Cannabis Serum has stirred up a couple questions – and even got me booted from a deal with a major big box retailer (… Hemp Seed Oil is NOT the same as THC or CBD extractions!). So I thought this was the perfect time to talk about all the wonderful pakalolo products 😊!

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Cannabis is a beautiful healing plant with hundreds of valuable components, that’s why we have so many different options when it comes to using it. Between CBD, THC, oils, extracts, Hemp, and legalities….. oof, it’s easy to get confused.

Cannabis contains over 400 useful compounds, and 60+ cannabinoids; those are the compounds that act on our bodies natural “endocannabinoid” system and heal us.

The main two compounds we know are THC + CBD – they can be used individually or together to balance each other out. Since we developed a method of pulling THC + CBD apart, there has been a massive flood of cannabis products on the market. They are all different preparations of the same plant.

image by kazoka on istockphoto.com

image by kazoka on istockphoto.com


Why are there so many different Canna products?

We rely on plants for nearly everything – which it is important to value plants, nature and protect our rainforests (they are home to our most valuable compounds, both discovered and undiscovered).

Plants can be used in many ways – whole, as tinctures, extracts, poultices, infusions, decoctions, powdered, in tablets or capsules, burned in smudges, or inhalants and more. Each preparation method allows us to customize the potency of the herbal remedy, so an extraction or tincture is generally of higher potency and will contain more of the desired active compound.

We can make light extractions at home, or pharmaceutical companies can make a super potent extraction with fancy equipment – think caffeine pills vs. coffee, or willowbark vs. aspirin. A whole cold-pressed oil or a tea / infusion can be used as a quick remedy and an extract can be used as a supplement, medicine, or an active ingredient depending on the strength.

Therefore you’ll see Hemp CBD extracts promoted for supplemental or medicinal use, and Hemp Seed Cold-Pressed Oil for beauty, moisturizing, rebalancing or as a omega fatty-acid supplement. Both have incredible benefits, but each have a slightly different makeup and can be used differently.

 

Marijuana Infused Oil (THC)  vs.  Hemp Seed Oil  vs.  CBD Oil

Products are typically marketing for nutritional or medicinal products and beauty products. We have several types of Cannabis and their primary uses and differences – mainly we know of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) that causes the high, and Cannabidiol (CBD).

Indica-dominant strains tend to have a higher cannabidiol content than the sativa plants in which THC content is higher – and then there is the raw cold pressed oil made from the neutral fatty  seeds.

 

Marijuana Infused Oil

               Cannabis infused oil is typically referring to edibles – which can be made with CBD oil or THC oil – but typically we think of an infused oil as a THC containing oil infused by heating the marijuana flowers in fat. This is not a true “extract”, it’s more of a variation on how to consume / metabolize the marijuana.

There are companies that used infused oil, like Foria, for medicinal benefits – but unless youre a medical patient or live in a recreation-legal state, you’re highly unlikely to be able to purchase an infusion containing THC. So, any “hemp oil” or “hemp oil extract” product should not be confused with this.

 

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Pure Cold Pressed Hemp Seed Oil

Like other cold pressed oils (Olive, Grape Seed, Corn, Avocado, Sesame, Peanut) we take the seeds/nuts and press them to express the oil. The seeds of hemp contain nearly no THC, and a small amount of CBD – the value of hemp seeds is in the protein, fatty acids and fiber… but only the seeds are used and they aren’t as potent as the rest of the plant.

Hemp Seed Oil is incredible for dietary and beauty purposes, which is why I created the Cannabis Serum. Hemp Seed Oil is non-comedogenic, meaning is won’t “clog pores” by hardening in your follicles and it’s easily absorbed by the skin.

It helps heal and support inflammatory skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis by being anti-inflammatory and light. Read more about the skin benefits of Hemp here.

 

Hemp Extracted CBD Oil

CBD is extracted using the whole hemp plant – it provides relief without the psychoactive effects, or the “high” caused by THC.

This is incredible for medicine, because without the high, there are more uses – for anxiety, pain management, inflammation and more. We only had the ability to separate CBD from the rest of the Canna plant since 2012 (thanks Isreal, you a real one)… so that really opened the flood gates for CBD based products.

In order to separate CBD from the THC and other parts of the plant, we have to extract it - the result is a medicinal strength concentrate of the CBD compound. So, what is the extraction process like?

Well, much like other herbal extractions, we first pick the most potent strains, those plants with the most CBD content. Then there a couple different common methods –oil extraction, isolate extraction, alcohol extraction, ethanol, CO2…. I know, that sounds like a lot, but they are just methods of pulling the compound into a solution and burning off the solution to get the medicine!

 

My CBD recommendations – I’ll write another piece on this, with product links, too!

The best kind of CBD product to get: full spectrum, USA grown. I would recommend that the product have a good complimentary ingredient like MCT oil (a potent extraction from coconut oil) because it regulates lipid metabolism, or a small ratio of THC if you are able to use that.

Avoid products that are “hemp seed oil” – CBD products should at least have “Hemp Seed Extract”.

Dosage will depend on your needs and tolerance, but it’s best to take small doses throughout the day (2-3 times, or as needed) rather than one single large dose.

 

               I would love to hear what you all think! If there are any questions, comments or recommendations comment below 😊!

 

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Some more reading material -

  1. Cannabis, a complex plant:      different compounds and different effects on individuals. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3736954/

  2. List of Major Cannabinoids      in Cannabis and Their Effects. https://www.leafly.com/news/cannabis-101/list-major-cannabinoids-cannabis-effects

  3. From Clone To Concentrate:      CBD processing. https://www.projectcbd.org/industry/clone-concentrate-how-cbd-oil-made

 

Food as Medicine, WELLNESS

Tropical Spirulina Smoothie

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SPIRULINA - my absolute favorite ingredient. I have always loved adding a chlorophyll rich supplement to my diet, whether it’s lots of leafy greens, algae, or pure chlorophyll drops. 

I havent had spirulina in a minute, so I added it to my last Thrive order since it’s nutrient packed and great for hormonal breakouts (more on that in another post).

I opted for the powder, which was a total accident, a good accident however because you get more nutrition out of the powder than the tablets anyways.

I have a bit of a fear of green powders because some of them were pretty damn awful years back - spirulina however, is so mild flavored, and it’s pretty much flavorless once it’s paired with anything else.

Thank god for Minimalists Baker -life her Sprulina Smoothie Recipe - it is BOMB! I edited it a bit and added a tropical twist with Pineapple + Mango.

Tropical Spirulina Smoothie

1 teaspoon Hawaiian Spirulina

1 frozen banana (chopped up for ease) 

1 c coconut milk (then I thinned it a bit with water)

half handful of each: frozen pineapples, frozen mango and frozen spinach

*optional* a couple drops magnesium, some pee pollen and black sesame seeds

 

 

 

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WELLNESS, PLANT REMEDIES

Valentine's Day - Self Care

Valentine’s Day has always been one of my favorite “holidays” - the energy of this day makes me want to treat myself to a beautiful bath, candles and self-care.

Some of my favorite bath ingredients for this time are: coconut milk, rosewater, roses, carnations, hibiscus, pink or red sea salt, rose glycerite and blood orange juice. Once in a while, your soul needs you to do something really beautiful for yourself - whether that’s a soaking bath, a fresh meal, anything you feel really good about.

Here’s my Valentine’s Day Bath :) Make sure to check out some of the Valentine’s packages I put together.

Every gift will be packaged in these reusable cotton bags that I dyed this week using Moroccan Madder Root - my best friend sent me the best dying powders on her travels - check out her travel blog on Morocco - it’s gorgeous!



PLANT REMEDIES, WELLNESS, + MORE

Pine Needle Bath Soak

The day after Christmas always felt very relaxing, we’re all winding down from the holiday buzz, most of us have the day off and it’s chilly out- so it’s a restorative day. 

Since the summer I’ve been dealing with a pretty painful neck injury - so a pine soak for muscle recovery. Pine is also used for stress relief, skin irritation and as a boost of Vitamin A.

 

For this soaking bath I aimed to soothe my muscles, stress relief, to clear sinuses and celebrating winter. 

I gathered pine and rinsed them in the sink, drew a bath. I added Epsom Salt, colloidal oats and the Pine bundles in... while diffusing eucalyptus oil. 

 Perfect ending to the holiday 🌿

WELLNESS

Lazy Winter Skin Tips


Well – I spent a solid two hours writing this blog, then the entire thing disappeared (thanks Squarespace). So, here is a less informative version!

  

Moving back to New York has completely shocked my skin – and I’m fully understanding the term “ Alligator Skin” at the moment. Between setting up the studio, batching products and moving – I have been really lazy with self care, especially exfoliating. So – it’s the perfect opportunity to write a short list of easy dry skin remedies.

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HYDRATION

I could say this one a thousand times - it’s hard to stay hydrated but it’s so crucial to skin health. Hydration helps skin stay plump, perform/function better and keep exfoliated.

Drink herbal teas, water, broth - anything, make sure youre drinking a little more than your recommended amount!


LOOFAHS + DRY BRUSHING

Keep a dry brush hanging in the shower, before you turn the water on, get in and gently brush your body in long upward strokes (ALWAYS TOWARDS THE HEART!). Dry brushing a couple times a week is good for increasing circulation, brushing off excess dry skin, and preventing varicose veins.

Loofahs are a great way to get a similar benefit to dry brushing – switch to using a loofah instead of a shower poof or your hands .



BODY SERUMS

Body serums should be light weight so it absorbs easily into the skin post-shower. I love the Tropical Healing Serum because it’s light, scent free and sprayable to its easy to use. It contains Tamanu, Kuikui and Coconut Oil to deeply nourish + heal.

Plus, every bottle purchased donates $10 to ReForest Hawai’I + lasts for a long time!

HERBAL MILK BATHS

Natural ingredients added to a bath is one of my favorite things – herbs can be used for a variety of health and cosmetic issues. My favorite herbs for dry skin are: lavender, calendula, oats, chamomile. I also love adding ½ cup of ginger to Epsom salt to take a heat inducing bath – this helps your body to sweat out a cold/flu (take precaution if youre pregnant or have sensitivities).

*tip = place plant material in a muslin / cotton bag to prevent a mess, and use as a bath tea*

Milk is super moisturizing and beneficial for your skin, Cleopatra took milk baths as part of her beauty routine – so, that’s a pretty sign it works 😊

Coconut milk is nourishing and moisturizing.

Whole milk is exfoliating with natural Lactic Acid, an AHA that helps keep skin soft.

Oat milk is calming, soothing and can help if your skin is irritated or itchy (a cleaner way to use oats in a bath)


SCRUBS + MASKING

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I love mixing a batch of scrub and leaving it in the shower to use (precaution, if water gets into the scrub discard after 1-2 weeks because oil + water = mold, yeast and yuck).

You can use what you have in your home, like olive oil, coconut oil, sesame oil, sugar, coffee grinds (used or fresh), brown rice flour, etc.

Masks can be used to gently exfoliate too - clay, flour, powered herbs and more can be used. The Tropical Coconut Mask + Plant Lovers Mask are both gently exfoliating



EXFOLIATING LOTIONS / WASHES

You can also use an AHA  /  BHA lotion or body wash daily – Be careful if you have sensitive skin and always do a patch test!

WELLNESS

End of Summer Skin Repair

Summer is coming to an end, and with the change of seasons it's nice to revamp your skin and mind in honor of autumn. Summer is pretty harsh on the body - sun damage, salt, wind, chlorine (... some of us -_- ), and more all take a toll on our skin, leaving it dry and possibly a little dull as our tans fade.

I like to set an intention for Autumn, something that I want to focus on - for me this season my intention is to avoid burnout and focus on self care. So, this was the perfect thing for me to do!

For the end of summer skin repair we will focus on: exfoliation, massage, hydration + moisturizing! It's a time to prep the skin for fall + winter needs: exfoliation and moisture (since winter is dry and cold). I love this routine for any time I am feeling utterly overwhelmed but I don't have time for a long self care night.

Steps: Clean face, Exfoliate Face, Apply Mask (+ hair mask if you want!), step into shower, exfoliate body, remove mask and clean body, remove leave in hair mask + rinse off!

Exfoliation

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Give your face a quick wash, and gently exfoliate your face, apply a mask and then hop in the shower to give your body a scrub (save water by doing a dry exfoliation and then rinsing!)

For exfoliating your body you can use a wide variety of materials from plants to salts and more - but for your face it's a little different - you want to gentle exfoliant or an enzyme based method. You can also make a different scrub for the face + body!

Body: Combine any of the following
Salt, Sugar, Coffee, Brown Rice Flour, honey, oil (olive, grapeseed, hemp, sesame, coconut), butter (shea butter, cocoa butter, mango butter), Dried Herbs (finely ground)

Face: Combine any of the following
Brown Sugar (fine grain), Brown Rice Flour, Coconut Milk Powder (any milk powder), honey, light oil (hemp, sunflower, grapeseed), dried herbs fine ground (assure they are safe for your skin! - i love using ground centella ), or fruits!



Massage

After I rinse off my exfoliant, I like to stretch a little under hot water and give my body a gentle massage.

Massage is one of the best ways to improve circulation, stimulate muscles and tissues and drain lymph - which is all necessary for your body to naturally detox, stay healthy and stay hydrated!

There are a ton of massage tutorials online - everything from light lymph drainage, to soothing face and body massages - choose one thats best for you! *Tip - if you are doing a hard constricting pressure anywhere, always move upwards toward the heart!



Hydration

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Make a giant glass of water with herbs, cucumber, or fruit and make sure to drink it! Our skin requires that we are fully hydrated - that will help your skin function at its peak! 

I did a short blog on the importance of hydration and how our skin requires a balance of moisture + hydration - read it here! I also added a couple recipes for my favorite flavored water + their benefits!



Moisture

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Right out of the shower, while your still damp - a body serum is the ultimate gift to your skin! After exfoliating our skin is essentially primed to take in all the nutrients a dense serum has to offer.

There are a ton of serums - or try our Tropical Body Serum made to repair the harshest environmental damage, it has Kukui Nut, Tamanu and Coffee infused Coconut Oil! (and it donates $10 to Reforest Hawai'i!)

I also did a short blog on the importance + reasons you should consider a body serum. It's not required often or every day - but it's like a going to get a facial or a teeth cleaning - a great intensive maintenance treatment.

Apply the serum to your whole body by spraying it on and rubbing it in - then apply your normal moisturizer to lock it in!

Once I do this, I like to put on some music, sit on a towel on the bathroom floor, sip my water and stretch or meditate to a podcast or some music.

PLANT REMEDIES, WELLNESS

Bath Tea

 

Bath Tea is one of my absolute favorite way to use herbs. I do like a messy beautiful pinterest style bath - but if you dont want the heavy cleanup of flowers and herbs in your bath, then just simple wrap your herbs in cotton, or get a small muslin bag (if you get a Ny'Ala product, I mostly package with muslin, or you can leave me a little note!).

Poultices are great to use directly on affected skin, or to toss in the bath or even as aromatherapy. I currently have a Lavender Poultice up in the store - I use this as aromatherapy, also I run under lukewarm water and apply to a burn, or cold water and to my face to close my pores - and as a quick relaxing bath tea (just toss one in!). Use code "NaturalBeauty" for 10% off of the poultice!

Here are some of my favorite bath tea recipes - for each of these you can use tea bags, bulk herbs from the spice section of your healthfood or wholefoods store, or buy them on amazon "frontier" brand is great! 
 

Summer Cool Down

Peppermint

Green Tea

Epsom Salt

Diffuse Lemon Grass or Eucalyptus during your bath!

 

Skin Softening + Calming

Coconut Milk
(powdered is best, but you can toss a little coconut milk directly into the water)

Lavender Buds (into the bag!)

Lavender or Rose Essential Oil

 

Energizing, Stimulating, Focus

*Great for an exam, or if you come home from work and need to start on a project or refocus - you can use these scents in a shower too by hanging rosemary or diffusing essential oils, or by putting a couple drops on a dry sponge in the shower!

Rosemary Leaves (dried or fresh)

Eucalypus Essential Oil (or leaves)

Epsom Salt

 

Detoxing #1

Epsom Salt

Bentonite Clay (2 tsp)

Lavender Buds (or EO)

and Green Tea (in a tea bag is okay!)
 

Detoxing #2

Bentonite or Aztec Clay

1 pinch of Activated Charcoal

Ginger (raw 1/4 cup, dried 2-3 tsp)

Epsom Salt
 

Sun Burn

Green Tea

a litttttle (1-2 tsp) Apple Cider Vinegar

Peppermint

Oats *if its the first day of the burn at its worst*

Epsom Salt *if it's day 2+ of the burn!*

**Aloe Vera, apply before the bath if its a gel!)

WELLNESS

Importance of Body Serums

Our skin is our largest organ, and it requires maintenance to perform well. We want clear + supple skin void of wrinkles and signs of aging.

Since I was a younger my mother stressed the importance of moisturizing, and although adding another step to your routine can sounds daunting - it works wonderrrrrssss to moisturize your body daily!

We need to treat the skin on your body as you do your face. While our body doesn't tend to have many hormone reactive areas, we still need to moisturize, especially in age-prone areas such as the chest, knees and neck!

Why Serums? They're light, full of active ingredients like botanicals - and are super concentrated!

 

Lotions + Creams  vs.  Serums + Oils -

Lotions contain over 90% water - while water is so good for our skin, and we must stay hydrated -  it doesn’t have to be used to cut our products. This means that active ingredients, or the ingredients that really help your skin are only present in small amounts of 1-5%.

A serum + concentrated oil are the direct active ingredients. Our Tropical Body Serum contains Kukui Nut, Tamanu, Coconut + Grapeseed - the best 

Lighter gel-like moisturizers are great for truly oily skin, on your face - but our body requires a little more - body serums + concentrated oils keep your skin moisturized and prevent dullness, fine lines, dry alligator-like spots and even prevent deep scars by promoting collagen production.   

 

Low-Maintenance routine:

After showering, lightly pat yourself dry, spray our Tropical Healing Serum on your body while you’re a bit damp - then rub in and voila! 

Using this serum (or any concentrated oil based product) while you're still wet creates and emulsion between the water = oil and allows your body to fully absorb the healthy oils! Similar to that we wish lotion was doing (but it isn't).

 

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WELLNESS, + MORE

Grief + Health

June 6 1949 - my fathers birthday and May 26 1999 - the day my father disappeared and October 2008, the day we sort of found out what happened to him.

An almost 20 year battle with emotional trauma and the death of my father left me broken and grieving for most of my life... until this year. At 28 years old I have finally learned that closure is the cure to grief, for me at least. Throughout my life I have been embarrassed to tell this story - and now, I am not. My father, William Cutolo, was an amazing man - and I finally am able to honor him.

Emotional pain can cause many health conditions - it's overall devastating for the body. We are essentially in a 'fight or flight' mode, and as a result our body cannot heal itself, absorb nutrients, allow for proper rest or balance your hormones correctly. Adrenal fatigue is a real thing - and before we change our diet and introduce herbs or medication, we must confront the root of the problem because it will continue to show up in every area of your life.

So - in essence, to mitigate stress, declining health or to clear your energy you MUST start with confronting the root. This doesn't have to be a long or difficult process, but here's what I did.

Last year, May 2017, I decided that I needed to change my life, and I moved to Hawai'i with the most amazing, caring, loving man I've ever met. This was a leap of faith, but I knew that if I didn't trust him, and myself and just take the plunge - I would forever regret it. Along the journey from New York to Hawai'i, I made another damn bold move - I contacted my brother, who, up until a couple of months prior, I haven't seen or spoken to since I was nine years old. 

That was an incredible experience. Having my whole world implode at nine wasn't easy - but hiding this pain was worse. Reaching out to him may have been difficult, but it was the best way to confront my past and enjoy the great parts - like how damn similar we look, and act, and think - who knew family had such similarities - joking!

Fast forward a year - May 26 2018, my good friend made a simple comment to me "we should get Italian food and celebrate him" … WELL DUH. Why is it that we assume things have to be a dramatic thing? A simple celebration in a beautiful place - why haven't I thought of that?

… so my amazing fiancee' bought my father a royal lei - and we went off to China Walls to toss it into the madly waving pacific ocean at sunset. So freeing. The water went from calm to violently bursting crashing waves when I threw the lei in, that was my father, I know it.

…. I feel so free, so calm, so connected to his spirit - and finally, I can start to heal in an effective way.

 

WELLNESS, + MORE

Hydration vs. Moisturizing

Since summer is here - let's talk about hydration. Just like other skin care routines like moisturizing, toning, cleaning and masking - hydration is absolutely key.

Keeping hydrated is the best way to assure your body is removing toxins and digesting properly to absorb nutrients. We all want plump beautiful skin, so we should be drinking half our body weight in water every day!

So, what's difference between moisturizing your skin and drinking water? 

In essence: hydrating brings water to the skin and moisturizing keeps the water within the skin - we are always aiming for a perfect balance of hydration and moisture.

 

Hydration Vs. Moisture

Hydration is bringing water to the skin via our food and water. This helps the skin say supple and function properly (shedding, creating new skin cells, detoxifying etc.). This makes sense because when our body is hydrated it operates at a higher capacity and is able to cleanse + detoxify itself, allowing our skin to be more radiant and health. When we are hydrated we are less prone to dull skin, fine lines, and aggravated dry red spots.

Moisture is the skins ability to keep that water in the body and keep the skin hydrated - this is our oil content. Oily skin types tend to have an overabundance and dry skin types have less oil, which makes it hard for their skin to keep the water content at an optimal level. 

Each skin type varies a bit in the amount of moisturizing and the type of moisturizer that will work best, but everyone must be hydrated.

I know I'm not alone in this, but drinking almost 70 oz of water a day get's pretty hard for me. These are my favorite water recipes for skin care!

 

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D.I.Y. NATURALLY FLAVORED WATER

Lemon / Lime Water Activates the liver to help with detoxifying and its a great boost of vitamin c - great for combination skin types! 

Basil is a natural antiseptic, you can even use this as an acne face rinse or steam in an at-home facial. Plus, it's great fix for dry mouth or bad breath!

Mint is a natural blood purifier and contains natural salicylic acid, you can use this in a steam for a facial during a break out.

Watermelon is super tasty, hydrating and gorgeous! Watermelon contains vitamin C + A, antioxidants and lycopene! Watermelon naturally increases collagen production, so this is a great summer drink especially for those who tan!

Green Tea contains tons of antioxidants, a light amount of caffeine and boosts your immune system.

Apple Cider Vinegar is toning to the skin (use diluted), it naturally activates the liver + helps aid in digestion.

WELLNESS, PLANT REMEDIES, + MORE, INGREDIENTS

Turmeric: The Inflammation Super Hero

So, I love turmeric, the little life saving anti-inflammatory root with an intense yellow-orange hue and spicy flavor. Known an ‘Ōlena in Hawai'i, this root is used for everything from skin care, tea, spice, curry, and more. 

Our Turmeric Balm was created to be used to combat inflammatory skin conditions like stubborn painful swollen pimples, small infections, or - like in my case, an entire face full of wicked sunburn. That's what I get for not re-applying my sunscreen despite knowing I should - I was out for nearly 10 hours, so it's my fault I got burned hah, thanks nature!

So - this is one of the many ways to use our Turmeric Balm - as a rescue mask for sunburn. I applied to my entire face and left it for 30 minutes - to avoid any mild skin staining (disappears in a couple hours ) you can also leave it on for 10-15 min. then wash your face normally.

 

PLANT REMEDIES, WELLNESS

Detox Bathing + Heat for Healing

Water - necessary for life and healing in so many ways. Coming from Hawai'i to New York I didn't expect to be this shocked by how dry the air is. I started to think about how important heat and humidity is for overall health.. our sinuses are moisturized, blood and lymph flows better so we are less prone to sickness, no static or that dry taute feeling on your skin. 

While living in New York I heavily relied on baths, tea, humidifiers and herbs that promote blood flow and warmth. This is my absolute favorite recipe for days when you feel worn down, exhausted, unhealthy or if you have a cold, flu or chest congestion. This recipe uses a combination of heat, salt, ginger and lavender to induce sweating and detoxifying.

I usually leave this in a giant ball jar next to my bath so I won't have to make a batch everytime. Today this bath saved me - especially since it's so chilly out!


GINGER DETOX BATH

1/2 cup ginger (powdered or finely chopped - just not the jar kind with added sugar!)

2 cups epsom salt

15 - 20 drops of Lavender Essential oil

How to use: Mix all ingredients or put them in a jar and shake it up! Add to a warm bath and hop in.  **Make sure you have water to hydrate yourself, I usually end up drinking about 24 oz. 
You'll want to stay in the bath for 15-20 minutes - if you feel dizzy just get out, lay down on a towel and get back in one more time. You can repeat this 2-3 times if you want to. Dry off gently and slowly, if you're sick with congestion or flu, but a vapor rub on your chest. Tie your hair back and get into cotton or lightweight pajamas, preferably pants and go to bed!

What to expect: This blend works to stimulate your blood flow and helps the body to sweat out illness essentially, so you're going to sweat throughout the night because the ginger and epsom salt are bringing heat to the skin. In the morning take a shower if you can!

 

If you have any questions, just leave a comment below!