Monday, 31 October 2016

SUBSCRIPTION BOX REVIEW- Honi Essentials- October Essentials box

Our senses do so much for us throughout the day that sometimes we don't even notice how much something like fragrances affect us. Did you know that many scents can actually improve your mood or health?  Essential oils can help you relax, sleep, aid in digestion or improve your skin because these oils have a healing effect on the body as well as the mind and soul. There's very little that an essential oil CAN'T help with! The world of essential oils is so fascinating and I'm glad to explore this more with some oils from Honi Essentials.

If you haven't heard of Honi Essentials, let me tell you how awesome this subscription is if you're looking to build your essential oils collection on the cheap! A huge thanks to the Honi Essentials team for sending me the October Essentials box to review. I got the Frankincense, Sweet Orange and Cassie therapeutic grade oils. Here's a little about each one:

Frankincense- Can be used in baths, and to help minor cuts and bug bites heal more quickly. Frankincense has been used for thousands of years and  can be used for depression, inflammation, immunity, and to increase spiritual awareness.

Sweet Orange- A powerful mood enhancing antioxidant. Can help fight cancerous tumours, increases circulation, kills bacteria, decreases wrinkles as well as eases anxiety. 


Cassia- An anti-diarrhea agent. Cassia oil also improves circulation and relieves menstrual symptoms. It's also a natural bug repellant and astringent.


I loved using these oils in my bath. I tried various combinations of all three oils and I haven't been disappointed yet! My favourite is the Cassia oil because I love the strong cinnamon aroma.  Breathing deeply while in the bath really does relieve the stress of the day and enhances my mood. After soaking in these oils, my skin felt truly refreshed and soft. I love turning my bathroom into my own little spa! You can use these oils in a variety of ways, and for a beginner like me, I'm excited to learn how to use these oils for a better wellbeing.

Check out the Honi Essentials website if you wanted to learn more about the essential oils subscription http://www.honi.life/

Do you use essential oils? How do you use them? I'd love to learn more! 



Sources:

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2014/07/02/benefits-of-essential-oils_n_5536808.html
https://draxe.com/orange-oil/

Sunday, 30 October 2016

My First Time using Elabloom skincare

After a super busy weekend, I was really looking forward to tucking the kids in bed and testing some new skin care products :) My Sunday self care routine usually includes a nice warm bath, a glass of wine, and a facial routine of some sort. Tonight I got to pamper my skin with Elabloom Lifestyle. I was sent the cleanser, toner and moisturizer to try and I absolutely love them (Thanks Elabloom team!) You can find this kit on the Elabloom website, and you can also check out their other products that look just as amazing. 

So what does Elabloom even mean? In Sanskrit, Ela means Earth; so Elabloom means "Earth's Bloom". The Elabloom creators have taken a holistic approach to health, spiritual balance, and livlihood. I love that Elabloom products are scented using 100% essential oils and made in Canada. I love affordable, consciously sourced products!

About the cleanser- I started my ritual with the cleanser. The moisturizing face wash was surprisingly rich and lathered very well. The fragrance was very invigorating. I like that Elabloom products are paraben, petroleum, and phthalate free.  My skin responded very well and was left feeling very soft and clean. I was very impressed with the ingredients:

Deionized Water, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate (Skin Conditioning Agent), Decyl Glucoside (Cleansing Agent), Sucrose Cocoate (Skin Conditioning Agent), Glyceryl Stearate (Emulsifying Agent), Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract (Chamomile), Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe Vera), Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Camellia Sinensis (Japanese Green Tea) Leaf Extract, Emulsifying Wax NF, Phenoxyethanol and Caprylyl Glycol (Optiphen®), 'Blissful'Scent Profile

This gentle cleanser did an excellent job of removing all impurities and prepped my skin for the next step. 

About the toner- I usually skip the toner in my skin care routine because I haven't seen the benefits of using one. This toner was very moisturizing and my face really felt soothed after using this. I did a quick spritz of the spray and gently pressed the formula into the skin. I liked the scent of this toner and the convenient spray bottle would be convenient for a mid day "pick me up".

About the moisturizer- This is my favourite product out of the three that I got to try.  I was really surprised that the thick cream felt so light and refreshing once I used it on my face. There was no greasy residue and absorbed very well. It has a very subtle and pleasant scent, that I love! This cream contains Hyaluronic Acid and felt so decadent. I wish you could feel how soft my skin is after using these products! Just when my skin needed the extra moisture most :) I was most impressed to learn that the moisturizer contains a natural blend of 5 oils and exotic Mango and Shea butter.  My skin was truly transformed after just one use. LOVE THIS!

I'm happy to include Elabloom in my daily routine and I recommend checking out Elabloom if you're looking for an effective and holistic skin care ritual. If you'd like to learn more about Elabloom, check out their website at www.elabloom.com.


Tuesday, 25 October 2016

My First Time using Scrub Supply Co

If there's something I would change about the fall, it's the way my skin responds to the cooler weather. My skin has become so dry that I fell like I am reapplying moisturizer ten times a day! In an effort to keep my face looking smooth and fresh, I pampered my skin with a coffee scrub from Scrub Supply Co.  A huge thanks to the Scrub Supply Team for sending me the coffee and turmeric scrub to try!

I've tried to make my own coffee scrubs in the past, but it didn't turn out as lovely as the coffee scrub from Scrub Supply Co. let me tell you! I really liked the formula of this scrub which contains only 5 ingredients:

coffee, cocoa powder, cold pressed coconut oil, raw demerara cane sugar and vitamin E oil

All ingredients used in the Scrub Supply Co products are 100% vegan and all natural. I liked that the particles weren't too big, like some other scrubs I have tried. It was easy to work with and didn't clog my drain! That's a huge bonus in my books! This organic scrub has many benefits like:


  • stimulating blood flow
  • reducing the appearance of cellulite and eczema
  • exfoliates dull looking skin
  • unclogs pores
After washing off all makeup, this scrub is a great way to revive your skin and give it the wake up call it might need! To use this scrub, wet your face with water and put a small amount of the scrub in the palm of your hand. Gently massage your face using the scrub while focusing on trouble areas. You can now let this sit on your face while you relax! I confess, I was a bit nervous about the coffee grounds falling off my face, but it held its own and stayed put even when I was walking around :) After 15 minutes (or longer if you just can't stop watching your favourite show on Netflix!) rinse well with warm water and pat dry. I like following up with a serum and moisturizer, but truthfully, my face felt so smooth that you might not even need it.

I was very impressed with this scrub and I'm excited to add this to my regular beauty routine. You can even use this scrub on other parts of your body for a full body experience! Have you tried a coffee scrub before? What are your thoughts?

P.S. And just because I appreciate you so so much, I'm giving away a coffee scrub AND turmeric scrub from Scrub Supply Co in my next giveaway. Stay tuned lovies!!



Sunday, 23 October 2016

GIFT FOR HIM- Morning Wood watches

I hope you enjoyed reading about the men's gifts that I've been posting about lately. It's time to start thinking about gifts since gift giving season is just around the corner. EGADS!!! I know! I've got another men's watch review to finish off your weekend. This time, I'd love to tell you about Morning Wood watches. I got the Beach House watch  from the lovely MW team (thanks y'all!!) and the hubby loved it :)

MY THOUGHTS:

I was really impressed with the design of the Beach House. It's a very nice looking watch and can match almost any outfit! I like the minimalist design and feel of the watch. The Beach House is a wood watch, but is very light. This would be perfect for someone that is looking for style, but not the bulkiness of some other men's watches on the market.

HIS THOUGHTS:

The Beach House watch paired well with almost all my casual outfits. I liked that it wasn't too big or bulky and fit nicely under my shirts. It's a light watch and at times felt like I wasn't even wearing it! I can definitely see why this watch is called the Beach House because it would be perfect for just that, spending the day at the beach! It just reminds me of a beach house hahah! My favourite thing about this watch is the leather. It felt really nice on my arm and felt so luxurious. The watch face is so unique and I love the pattern. I don't have any other watch like this so it was nice to have such a versatile piece in my collection. I'm very impressed with Morning Wood watches.

If you'd like to learn more about what Morning Wood has to offer, visit their website at https://morningwoodmenswatches.com/ There's currently free shipping, and with over 15 watches to choose from, I'm sure you can find that perfect watch for someone special!

Have you started your holiday shopping yet? EEKSS! I can't believe it's that time of year again!

Saturday, 22 October 2016

GIFT FOR HIM- Original Grain watches

A nice watch can add a level of sophistication to any outfit. It's often said that one of the first things a person notices on a man is his watch. If you're looking for a superior watch that won't break the bank, check out Original Grain watches. I was sent the Whiskey Barrel and Minimalist Zebrawood watch to try (Thanks OG team!!) and I can't tell you how much my hubby and I love them!


MY THOUGHTS:

I was first and foremost impressed with the packaging. The watches came in a lovely wood box with the Original Grain logo carved on the front. Inside the watch was nicely tucked in a tight fitting velvet-like surrounding. This box is perfect for storing your watch when you're not using it. Its nice enough that it can be displayed and small enough that you can pop it in your bag when you're travelling. It's really convenient to get a nice box so if you're giving it as a gift, you can just put a bow on it and give it as is! There's also a little note about your watch and the OG brand as well as instructions for using the watch.

I wore the Minimalist  and loved how soft and comfortable the leather felt on my wrist. It's a unisex watch but fit nicely on my little wrist :) It's simplicity at its finest, and I loved that the Minimalist matches literally every outfit! There are so many styles and varieties, you should definitely check out what OG has to offer if you're in the market for a gift for someone else or yourself. You won't be disappointed! I loooooove every single one of them. GAH!!

HIS THOUGHTS:


I wore the Whiskey Barrel and loved everything about it. It was the perfect weight and looked great on my wrist. I was surprised that the glass was so clear! The wood/metal combo adds a nice touch. Original Grain watches are made from stainless steel and handcrafted wood. The quality is simply amazing! I was very impressed when I learned that OG watches are handcrafted from a variety of sustainably sourced exotic hardwood from around the world. I was also thrilled to learn that for each watch sold 10 trees are planted. By partnering with Trees for the Future, this gives both food and jobs for thousands of people around the globe. Now that sounds like a win-win to me!!

If you'd like to learn more about Original Grain check out their website at www.originalgrain.com.

And P.S. I'm including a Minimalist watch in my next giveaway!! OMG!! Stay tuned :)

Have you started your holiday shopping yet? Check out my Gifts For Him page for some inspiration!

Thursday, 20 October 2016

My First Time using Purple Tale

My sheet mask and skin care obsession continues with the amazing sheet mask from Purple Tale. I got to try the 5 Steps to Lovely Skin- a huge thanks to the Purple Tale team for sending me this mask to review :)

I really liked that this was an all-in-one solution. It was nice to have everything I needed to pamper my skin in one convenient pouch. This would be perfect for travelling since you wouldn't need to carry all your skin care items! At first glance you might think that there isn't enough product in the pouch, but I found that there was more than enough solution in each section for my face. 

Here's how to use the 5 Steps to Lovely Skin facial solution:

1) Foam Cleanser -Lather foam cleanser in hands and wash face and neck. Rinse and gently pat dry.
-This cleanser was very gentle and left my face feeling clean and refreshed. I would have preferred an exfoliant since my skin needs some gentle scrubbing during these cooler months, but I was generally pleased with this cleanser. 
2) Ampoule -Apply a thin layer to face and neck and wait for the product to sink in.
-This felt like a serum and did a good job of prepping my skin for the next step.
3) Bio-cellulous Sheet Mask -Peel away protective film on one side, place the mask on face and then peel away the other protective film. Leave on face for at least 20 minutes. Remove when ready.
-I was happy to use this two piece mask. It fit well and felt truly luxurious. It was very thin, so I had to be extra careful when opening the mask and peeling off the protective layers. This mask stayed in place and was so comfortable. There's nothing worse than a sheet mask that slips off, or is awkward to wear! The fibres in the mask felt really soft on my face and I felt like my skin really absorbed a ton of essence. I hate when there's still so much essence left on the mask when I'm done with it, but my skin really loved this one!
4) Ode to Hydration Facial Cream -Dab facial cream on face and apply evenly.
-This cream was very nice and had a lovely scent. It did a great job of sealing all that moisture from the mask!
5) Once Upon a Neck Cream -Massage neck cream onto neck with an upward motion.
-I was grateful for this cream because I ALWAYS forget to take care of my neck! This was a welcome reminder to take care of the neck to complete the pampering!
I was very pleased with the way my skin looked and felt after using this all-in-one system. My skin looked brighter and felt so so smooth! I will definitely put in an order soon!!! If you would like to learn more about Purple Tale, check out their website at www.purpletale.com

P.S. I have added a 5 Steps to Lovely Skin facial solution in my next prize pack (coming very VERY soon) OMG!! You are gonna love it. Stay tuned :)

Have you tried an all-in-one facial system? What are your thoughts? I'd love to hear from you!

Monday, 17 October 2016

October 2016 Ipsy Glam Bag Review

My current makeup subscription box is from Ipsy. I was a bit skeptical about a monthly beauty and makeup subscription box because I didn't want to end up with a bunch of products I couldn't use or didn't know how to use. Each month you get full size or deluxe-sized products in a cute makeup bag, and I was sold after checking out their previous bags. If you're not very adventurous with makeup like me, it's a great way to build your makeup collection on the cheap and expand your makeup expertise!

The October Ipsy Glam Bag theme was Black Magic and featured my favourite Ipsy stylist Jaleesa Moses. GAAAAHHH! I thought the Halloween themed bag was super cute. This bag was designed by artist Valfre and featured cute Halloween related drawings like witches, candy corn, fangs and ghosts. Not only was the design awesome, let me take a moment to mention how cute the little ghost zipper pull is! I LUUURVEEE! I thought the design was very creative and I'd like to see more collaborations like this in the future :)


In my bag:


The Balm cosmetics Cabana Boy blush 

Trust Fund Beauty Gimme Good Face primer
Pure Brazilian Leave In Treatment
Indi Beauty lip scrub
tre'Stique matte lip crayon in Florence Fig


This month I got to try two brands I have never tried before. I'm happy to get a hair treatment other than Marc Anthony! LOL!! I love you Ipsy, but I was getting tired of Marc...sorry! As much as I wish I had other products- ya I got Instagram Glam Bag envy! I really can't hate on what I got. I rate the October Ipsy Glam Bag a reluctant 5/5!

The products I was most excited about was the lip scrub and matte lip crayon. I'm a sucker for a pretty nude lip colour and even though I certainly don't need another...I just can't stop hoarding (I think I need help!!)








Click here to sign up with Ipsy and get your very own Glam Bag! 

More about the products inside:

The Balm cosmetics Cabana Boy blush- I really like The Balm products. Their blushes are highly pigmented and offer fantastic, long lasting colour. This blush can actually be used as an eye shadow, and on my skin looks like a very soft metallic pink. I love it!

Trust Fund Beauty Gimme Good Face primer-I really liked this primer. It's a clear gel that was super silky to the touch. It absorbed well and left my skin feeling smooth and hydrated. I liked that it was virtually odourless and did not have a shimmer. It did what it promised- smoothed out imperfections and left my skin looking its best. 

Pure Brazilian Leave In Treatment- This was my first time using Pure Brazilian. I liked that this conditioner has keratin. The formula was a bit too fragrant for my taste. I didn't like feeling like I was putting perfume in my hair. My hair did feel smooth and soft after using it, but I didn't notice anything above and beyond. 

Indi Beauty lip scrub- This scrub was fantastic! I was very impressed with the formula- and I really had to stop myself from eating it! OMG! This scrub is made with organic sugar, shea butter, almond oil, beeswax, avocado oil, vitamin E oil, buttercream flavouring, and sweetener. YES PLEASE!!! I can't begin to describe how decadent this lip scrub is. After just one use, my lips felt soft and exfoliated, perfect for the cooler weather because ya know...WINTER IS COMING (I'm sorry I had too!) and we must keep those chapped lips at bay. I'm happy to get the opportunity to discover this brand because I will definitely repurchase!!

tre'Stique matte lip crayon- Yet another colour I love, even though I have so many just like it. I love the formula and this matte crayon went on smooth and didn't get dry too quickly. I wore it all day and didn't notice too much smudging.  One can never have too many nudes :)

What did you get in your October Glam Bag? I'd love to hear from you!

Thursday, 13 October 2016

How to clean your makeup brushes

Check out my quick and easy DIY brush cleaning routine. A huge thanks to the Nur Besten team for sending me this awesome cleaning mat. I find that the mat gets the brushes much cleaner than if I just use my hand 😍 Check out www.nurbesten.de and use code MOMD10 to save $$$ if you wanted to try your own. 👍🏽


Wednesday, 12 October 2016

My First Time wearing Perfect Lens contacts

As much as I love wearing glasses, I like changing up my style by wearing coloured contacts. I got two new colours from the lovely Perfect Lens team (THANKS GUYS!!!) and I couldn't wait to share with you how easy it is to effortlessly change your look! I got the Fresh Look One Day lenses in green and gray contacts and both look very subtle and natural. I liked how comfortable they are to put on and wear. If you're looking for affordable contacts, check out the Perfect Lens website here.

Putting on contacts is so easy! If you're unsure about how to put them on, keep reading!

Putting contact lenses on: step by step.
STEP 1: Thoroughly wash and dry your hands with soap. I try not to dry may hands with a towel because sometimes the little fibres get on my hands and under the contact.
STEP 2: Rinse your lens with solution to remove any trace of debris. (If you’re using a new lens simply take them out of the package, no solution is needed)
Tip: To avoid mixing up your contact lenses, always apply and remove the lens for your RIGHT eye first.
STEP 3: Place the lens on the tip of your index finger. Be sure the lens is correctly oriented by checking the inside–out marker.
STEP 4: Use your other hand to hold your upper eyelid so you won’t blink.
STEP 5: Pull down your lower eyelid with the other fingers of your applying hand.
STEP 6: Look up at the ceiling and gently place the lens on the lower part of your eye.
STEP 7: Slowly release your eyelid and close your eye for a moment.
STEP 8: Blink several times to center the lens. You’re all set.
STEP 9: If your lens feels uncomfortable, remove it and inspect for damage or debris. If it’s damaged, discard it. Otherwise, rinse with more solution and reapply.

What do you think of these contacts? Let me know which you like best :)

Monday, 10 October 2016

SUBSCRIPTION BOX REVIEW- Scentbird Perfume Subscription October 2016

There's nothing that completes your style better than a signature fragrance. If you or your significant other are looking for a favourite scent, then the Scentbird perfume and cologne subscription is the perfect way to find it without spending a ton of cash on full sized bottles. This is the perfect his AND her subscription! A huge thanks to the Scentbird team for sending two vials to try. *KISSES*

I love that there are over 450 designer and niche fragrances to choose. All fragrances are 100% authentic! You also get the perfect travel sized white perfume holder along with your first choice. Each vial would last about a month even if you use it daily. How awesome is that?!

I got the white holder for moi and the black for the hubby, but to be honest, I wouldn't mind swapping holders depending on my outfit! They're both super chic! There are lots of other beautiful perfume case colours on the Scentbird website and other goodies for your perfume collection. I might have to grab the other colours too! Heeheheheh :)

Before signing up, you can fill out the Scentbird Quiz to find out which fragrances might be for you. I took the quiz and after analyzing my responses, a lengthy list of fragrances that I might like appeared. I liked that I could build my own perfume collection this way because the results were based on everything I liked :)

The October fragrance of the month is Commodity Book. This unisex fragrance is a fantastic mixture of spicy cucumber and Torchwood. I like how this fragrance is both fresh and woodsy. I got my favourite scent- Dolce and Gabbana Light Blue- and good timing because I just ran out of the full size!

If you want to learn more about the Scentbird subscription, check out their website at https://www.scentbird.com/

You can use code LBOG25 to save 25% so you can find your own signature scent !!! You're welcome :)

Do you have a signature fragrance? What is it? I'd love to hear from you!

Saturday, 8 October 2016

BATTLE OF THE BRANDS: Natural Deodorants (Natural Blends vs. Purely Great)

It's no surprise that our skin absorbs a lot of what we put on it. I've paid a lot more attention to my skincare and makeup ingredients, but I didn't realize there were so many hazards with something that you might not have thought twice about. Your deodorant. What I've found was surprising! Read my post about some hazardous ingredients here.

My first BATTLE OF THE BRANDS is about natural deodorants. I've never heard of these brands before and I was excited to try them both!



Natural Blends- I got a sample natural deodorant spray to try and let me tell you, the thought of a spray deodorant was foreign to me! I'm so used to rubbing a stick under my arms, but I was really impressed with the aroma and formula. The formula naturally separates, so you do have to give it a little shake before you use it. This deodorant is made with 100% pure essential oils. NICE! I liked how clean and refreshed my pits were and the only downside was that the odour protection didn't last the entire day. Since I'm running around for most of my day, 24 HR protection is important to me. In theory, I could refresh my pits at some point during the day, but when you've got a million other things to do, who has time to reapply deodorant?

Purely Great-I got the lavender deodorant in the October 2016 Little Life Box. This was my first time using a cream deodorant. I wasn't sure what to expect so when I opened the little jar, I was surprised to find a handy little stick that I could stir the deodorant. It was a think mixture that had a very lovely fragrance. I did like the formula, but I didn't like that I had to spread it on my armpits with my fingers. This did last a bit longer than the Natural Blends spray, but I just couldn't get over my fingers smelling like deodorant after I used it. No thanks! I also didn't like the residue it left on my fingers and I hate to sound like I'm complaining, but I just don't fancy washing my hands every time I have to put on deodorant. This is another step I really don't want to take, you know what I mean?? The odour neutralizing effect was much better than the Natural Blends deodorant, however, I did notice that my under arm area felt a bit sticky. Not impressed about that :(

SIDE BY SIDE- For a full day, I used the Natural Blends deodorant under one arm, and the Purely Great deodorant under the other. I made my judgements under these 4 categories:

Odour Neutralizing- Purely Great wins this one
Endurance- Purely Great, but only by a small margin
Ease of use- Natural Blends, hands down
Comfort- Natural Blends (sorry Purely Great...I don't like feeling sticky)


If you would like to learn more about these brands visit their websites at:

Natural Blends- https://www.facebook.com/naturalblendsaromatherapy

Purely Great- https://mynaturaldeodorant.com/


For now I'm still on the hunt for a natural deodorant that can fulfill all my needs. 
Have you used natural deodorants? What are your thoughts?

What's in your deodorant?

If you run on auto pilot in the morning like I do, the last thing you want to worry about is your deodorant. I put my clothes out the night before so that's one less thing I have to think of when I wake up and get my day started. I grab my deodorant as if it's second nature after I get dressed, and it's something that I didn't put much thought into until recently. As you know, I'm a sucker for a good sale. Often times the deodorants that are on sale aren't really the best for you or your health. 

As I'm starting to make healthier food choices and better decisions about what I put on my face, I've started to make better choices about which deodorant I use. It's no surprise that our skin absorbs a lot of what we put on it. I didn't realize there were so many hazards with something that you might not have thought twice about. What I've found was surprising! 

Here are 4 hazardous ingredients of conventional deodorants and antiperspirants. 

1. Phthalates (pronounced THA-lates)

What does it do? Phthalates help consistency of personal care products. Phthalates are a group of chemicals that can make products (usually plastics) softer and more flexible.

Why is it bad? Phthalates increase the likelihood of cell mutation and disrupt hormone receptors which in turn increases the risk of birth defects.

2. Triclosan

What does it do? Triclosan is antimicrobial—it kills bacteria, fungus, and other microbes.

Why is it bad? In addition to being classified as a pesticide by the FDA and a probable carcinogen by the EPA, triclosan has been linked to a number of different problems including: disruption of the endocrine system (particularly thyroid function), increased risk of cancer, and increased hay fever and allergy symptoms. 

Because of this, some companies have begun to remove triclosan from their products, but you can still find it in many. The American Medical Association now recommends that triclosan and other antibacterial products not be used in the home as they may encourage bacterial resistance.

There's more- For some consumer products, there is evidence that triclosan provides a benefit. In 1997, FDA reviewed extensive effectiveness data on triclosan in Colgate Total toothpaste. The evidence showed that triclosan in that product was effective in preventing gingivitis.

3. Parabens

What does it do? Parabens are found in many personal care items and are used a preservative.
Why is it bad? The problem with parabens is that they mimic estrogen in your body. Not good. Parabens can throw off your body’s hormonal balance. This can cause an early onset of puberty, increase your risk of hormonal cancers, and even birth defects in your future children. There are no restrictions on the use of parabens in cosmetics in Canada. International regulations are stronger. The European Union restricts the concentration of parabens in cosmetics.
You may see parabens listed on the label as: methylparaben, propylparaben, ethylparaben, or butylparaben.

4. Aluminum

What does it do? Aluminum is an ingredient found in antiperspirants and works to completely stop perspiration.

Why is it bad? Aluminum has been linked to a number of health issues:
  • Seizures
  • Breast Cancer
  • Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Bone Formation Disorders
  • Kidney Problems
It’s of particular importance of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and Down’s Syndrome to steer clear of aluminum. Recent studies have shown that they are particularly sensitive to aluminum and absorb much more aluminum than others.

But don't despair! There are alternatives to conventional deodorants! I was sent a natural deodorant to try from the wonderful Natural Blends team- (THANKS GUYS) and I got the Purely Great cream deodorant from the October 2016 Little Life Box :)

Read my BATTLE OF THE BRANDS here 

http://www.intoxicatedonlife.com/2013/11/05/5-surprising-hazards-using-deodorant-solution/
http://davidsuzuki.org/issues/health/science/toxics/chemicals-in-your-cosmetics---parabens/
http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm205999.htm

Thursday, 6 October 2016

My First Time using Oyana Body Care

Fall is well under way and if you're like me, your skin isn't too happy about the changing temperature! Cooler weather means a substantial moisture loss for my skin and hair. Each year I have struggled to find something that can help with the extremely dry patches on my legs. These patches seem to get worse in the fall so you can imagine how thrilled I was to try two products from Oyana Body Care. I got to try the whipped coffee brown sugar scrub and whipped cocoa shea body butter (THANKS Oyana team for spoiling me with these products!)

I was immediately drawn to how lovely both products smell. The coffee scrub had a "chocolatey" aroma and felt very gritty. It was almost like coarse sand, not the smooth sand like in the St. Ives face scrub, if you know what I mean. This coffee scrub had much larger pieces of coffee grounds and brown sugar than I'm used to. I was happy to learn that the Whipped Coffee Brown Sugar Scrub contains a blend of all natural, raw, organic ingredients like:

Brown sugar- high in glycolic acid which conditions, moisturizes, and protects from toxins 

Coffee grounds- stimulates blood flow, boosts collagen, and tightens skin; and their special CocoaShea blend of moisturizer. 

I used the coffee scrub in the shower and it really did do an excellent job of sloughing off all that dead skin. I loved how smooth my skin was and the dry, dark spots on my legs did seem a bit brighter. I got the large tub and let me tell you, a little bit is all you need to get the job done!

I followed up with the Whipped Cocoa Shea Butter. I really loved the formula and was impressed with the ingredients. My first impression was positive as it felt really luxurious. 

It contains:

Half raw Shea Butter- known for its moisturizing fatty acids and vitamins useful for treating dry skin, eczema, and stretch marks
Half raw Cocoa Butter- known for its defense against wrinkles and fine lines due to its high concentration of antioxidants 
A special blend of coconut oil- known to help block harmful UV rays and aid in tissue repair and Sweet Almond Oil- known for its anti-inflammatory qualities

This absorbed well into my skin but I was a bit disappointed when I developed chapped patches. I was really hoping to love this blend but it didn't offer the moisture I needed and ended up making my legs even drier than before! I used this every day for about a week before I stopped using it due to the lack of improvement. Once I stopped using the shea butter, my skin's appearance did improve. I'm not sure what didn't agree with my skin and I'm sad to say this did not work well for me at all :( 

I still use the coffee scrub because it did do the best job of polishing my skin. I now follow up with another moisturizer that doesn't irritate my skin, but the moisturizing effect doesn't last as long as I'd like it to. 

If you'd like to learn more about what Oyana has to offer, check out their website at https://oyanabodycare.com/

I'm still on the hunt to find something that can help with extreme dry skin. If you have dry patches on your legs like me, let me know what you use! I'd love to hear from you! 




Wednesday, 5 October 2016

SUBSCRIPTION BOX REVIEW- October 2016 Little Life Box

If you're looking for a healthy lifestyle subscription box, then look no further than the Little Life Box. This subscription has a nice mix of beauty products, snacks, supplements and more! I was sent the October 2016 box to review and I was very surprised with what was inside:

Edgy Veggies crackers- full sized box of rosemary roasted butternut squash crackers
Caboo bamboo and sugar cane facial tissue
A. Vogel herbamare salt
A-Sha seaweed snacks- sample sized puffed black rice and sesame seed snacks
Clif Kid organic Z Bar- full sized box of chocolate brownie energy snack
Clipper tea- one bag of Indian Chai tea, one bag of Rise and Shine herbal tea
Pur Mints- sample pack
Burt's Bees lip balm- full sized wild cherry balm
Caramela & Cranberries chocolate snack
Purely Great cream deodorant- sample sized tub in lavender
Sweet Spot wipes- three samples

All these products came in a lovely box and was nicely wrapped inside with tissue paper. I love the little note that was included. I couldn't help but laugh. It said: I don't need an inspirational quote. I need a pumpkin spiced latte. 

More about the snacks-

I liked that there were full sized items as well as samples in this box. This was a great way for me to discover new brands and to enjoy snacks that I would never have purchased on my own at the store. At first taste, the Edgy Veggies crackers were a bit dry, but the more I ate the more I enjoyed them. The rosemary added a very delicious aftertaste and I will most definitely purchase these again after trying them from this box. 

My kids really enjoyed the chocolate brownie snack from Clif Kid. They didn't find it too dry or hard, but I won't be able to put this in the lunch bags because it isn't peanut free. I wish I had more of the A-Sha seaweed snacks because there wasn't enough to go around! The puffed rice really made the snack filling and the sesame seeds added a nice crunch. Here's another item I'm glad I got to try and will add to my shopping list for next time!

If you would like to check out Little Life Box for yourself, visit their website at littlelifebox.com. You can use the code OCTOBER for $5 off your first box with a monthly subscription.

For a closer look at what was inside, check out my video on YouTube  https://youtu.be/FJJECQ8drz0

Saturday, 1 October 2016

My First Time using Smart Ash by Bedrock and Bloom

When it comes to beauty, some people say that the best accessory is your beautiful smile. But what do you do when your teeth happen to be stained or are not as white as they should be? As much as I love white teeth, I love red wine and tea even more! I do try to brush and floss as often as I can to keep those stains at bay, but alas, my efforts sometimes are all for naught! That's why I was so excited to try the Smart Ash powder from Bedrock and Bloom. A huge thanks to the B&B team for spoiling me with the gift of whiter teeth! *KISSES!*

You might have seen your favourite YouTube stars brushing their teeth with that funny looking black powder. It's most likely charcoal powder and there are many kinds of whitening powders like this on the market. Smart Ash is an all natural tooth whitening powder that's like no other. It's made with natural ingredients that lift stains from your teeth while remineralizing, strengthening, and reversing sensitivity at the same time. As you might recall, I LOOOVVVEEEE drinking warm lemon water every morning (which can cause tooth sensitivity, but I don't care!!), so any product that promotes healthy teeth gets a plus in my books! I love that Smart Ash is 100% flouride free, GMO, vegan, and cruelty free. How amazing is that?!

Now I must warm you, using a black powder can get a little messy, so for the love of God...be careful with your electric toothbrush if you're using one!!! It would be a good idea NOT to turn the bristles on until your brush is in your mouth. I use my spare manual brush when I'm using Smart Ash because it does make the brush a bit black over time. 

Here's how to use Smart Ash:

Step One- Dampen your brush and carefully dip the bristles in water. All you need is a tiny bit and I always tap off the excess back into the jar. 

Step Two- Brush your teeth for two whole minutes. This can seem like a long time, but trust me...it's worth it!

Step Three- After carefully spitting what's in your mouth, brush your teeth again, but this time with water. This will get the black residue off your teeth. Don't forget to brush your tongue! Your spit will be a bit black so be careful not to get any on your clothes!

I've been using Smart Ash for about a month and I absolutely love it. The ingredients used are food-grade and kid friendly. I used it on my son after I noticed a bit of yellowing on his teeth and the results were just as impressive. The change in whiteness was subtle for both of us so I do not recommend using this product if you're looking for a substantial colour change, but I can definitely feel the difference in the condition of my teeth. I'm no longer sensitive to hot or cold drinks and that's something that is so incredibly valuable to me! 

If you want to learn more about Smart Ash, you can visit www.bedrockandbloom.com to read about this amazing company.

Have you tried charcoal based tooth whiteners? What's your favourite teeth whitening product? I'd love to hear from you!


UPDATE: The Smart Ash team took the time to respond to an Instagram comment about how there isn't much of a difference in the before and after pic. Here's what they said:

Smart Ash is an EXTRINSIC whitner. So it will only remove surface stains. You can see her smile was already very white and beautiful before, so she didn't have many stains to remove in the first place. Chemical whitners are INTRINSIC and actually bleach the dentin inside your teeth. The result is a super white and unnatural color that is only temporary. While our tooth powder won't make your teeth as freakishly white as traditional whiteners, it's not toxic to your body. Plz feel free to message us if you have questions!

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