Monday, March 31, 2014

Product Profile: Sugar Scrub (DIY Recipe Included)




Your skin cells are in a constant rotation of shedding and regenerating; however as we get older this process slows down and needs more serious attention. A body scrub comes into play by helping to keep skin fresh and rejuvenated.

Here are some perks to using body scrub:
     1. Body scrubs containing smaller granules can 
         double as a face and lip scrub
     2. They are great for moisturizing the skin while 
         removing excess buildup
     3. Leaves skin feeling baby bum soft
     4. Helps circulate blood flow, helping skin to 
         radiate. Take it up a notch with a body scrub 
         massage for a complete refreshing experience. 
         If you're in the Detroit area Immerse Spa at 
         MGM Grand Detroit offers this service
     5. Softens calluses and dry skin
     6. Great for all skin types
     7. Handmade versions are chemical free 
         (specifically, only when using unrefined sugar)
     8. Smells and tastes delicious -- a prelude 
         for making maaannnny good memories ;)

So here's a quick and easy way to make your own scrub using only three key ingredients:
coconut oil - 1/4 cup (if you have a coconut allergy, you can also use grape seed oil, sesame seed oil or extra version olive oil)
brown sugar - 1/2 cup
vanilla extract - 2 tsp

Place all ingredients into a bowl and stir with a spoon until evenly mixed. Pour into a container of your choice. Voila! Smells delicious, eh? 

Use it before or after your shower as a lip scrub, face or body exfoliant. Good for about 2 months, but it can last longer in the refrigerator. Coconut oil can stiffen in cooler temps which is perfectly normal and will feel soothing on the skin. Avoid using body scrubs on cuts, burns and abrasions.

Handmade isn't your thing, or you simply don't have time? Amour All Naturals also sells sugar scrubs, you can order online.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

DIY: Natural Hand Sanitizer




You can never have too many hand sanitizers, as it only takes a purse change to lose your favorite bottle. To make matters worse, it seems once you finally buy another jar, you find where you last placed the missing one. This no longer has to be your story, now you can make your very own hand sanitizer, and never get caught without a jar. 

Ingredients:

  • Aloe vera gel - 1/4C (if using a commercial brand, buy the non-medicated kind)
  • Witch Hazel - 3 Tblsp
  • Vitamin E - 2 tsp
  • Tea Tree Essential Oil - 7-8 drops
  • 1 Squeeze Bottle Container 

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix together, until fully blended. If it's too thick add more witch hazel, or add more aloe vera gel if it's too runny. Once it's the texture of your liking, pour into a squeeze bottle or jar of your choice. Voila, you're done. Enjoy!

Monday, March 24, 2014

9 Natural Skin Care Tips for Spring



CREDIT: Monik Markus


No matter what time of the year, drinking water is one of the absolute best ways to keep your skin hydrated and nourished. And, just cause you were born with it doesn't always mean that taking care of your skin will be a piece of cake. Like your wardrobe, your skin care regimen should be tweaked a bit to suite the season. So here are nine quick and easy natural skin care tips to help keep your skin smooth and glowing this spring: 



CREDIT: Laitr Keiows



1) Pay special attention to your eye care, as the skin around your eyes have no fatty tissues and is more delicate than the rest of the skin on your face and body. When moisturizing, dot the cream around your eyes and rub into your skin gently.

2) Avoid cleansers and moisturizers filled with artificial chemicals, colors and fragrances. Although many people use them and have done so for years without seemingly having had any problems; these products can and will cause buildup on the skin causing it look tired and aged -- prematurely.


Image Courtesy of stockimages/FreeDigitalPhotos.net
3) Speaking of age, there is no such thing as anti-aging. It sounds nice but... aging is a natural, normal part of life. It is possible; however, to look good while you age. Especially when you give yourself a fighting chance by eating a diet rich in antioxidants, meaning a wide variety of fresh fruits and veggies. Consider this, the more colorful your plate the better your fate ;) With proper sleep and exercise, you'll not only have a great figure but firmer skin. 

4) Use natural skin care products that are fitting for your skin type. For instance, people with dry skin should use creamy rich moisturizers, as those with oily skin can use lighter moisturizers. Those with normal skin types may not notice much of a difference between the two textures, but might find it more refreshing to use a lighter moisturizer during warmer months.

5) Use moisturizers and/or cleansers for specific parts of your body. It is not a marketing ploy to get you to buy more when products are labeled for: face, body or hand/feet (at least not with every brand, please do your research). Although it all covers one body, your skin has different layers on various parts, some of which need more attention. For instance, the skin on your face is much more sensitive and thinner than that on your feet. Your feet may need heavier creams, whereas your face and body can get by with light moisturizers like whipped coconut oil during spring and summer.

6) Re-moisturize your hands after every wash to keep hands soft and smooth. 



CREDIT: Evan Amos
7) When stressed your skin is more prone to breakouts, especially if you already have underlying allergy or acne issues. So, when you're vexed eat foods rich in vitamin C to help boost your immune system. Take it a step further by using vitamin C serum or vitamin enriched products topically to help restore your natural glow.

8) Try not to get carried away using too many different types of soaps, creams, makeups, etc. Excess chemicals can create mayhem on your skin like rashes or allergic reactions.

9) Keep your skin properly shielded from the sun. Wear a large brim sun hat, natural sunscreen lotion or light long-sleeve cotton shirt. Too much direct sun exposure can cause your skin to look tired and worn out, causing age spots and wrinkles. So, sun bathe in shaded areas, stay hydrated and when you can, relax indoors while sipping some refreshing, cool lemonade.



Tuesday, March 18, 2014

DIY: Aloe Vera Gel

CREDIT: Food Trails/ER and Jenny

Aloe Vera gel can be a natural reliever for sunburn, cuts and bruises; oh, minus the icky side effects from steroidal drugs. Because of its cooling and healing abilities it will come in handy this spring and summer. As it turns out, Aloe Vera is one of the leading ingredients in commercial brand skin ointments.

Don't forget that too much of one thing is never a good idea. Overuse of topical steroid creams can result in a weakened immune system, fluid retention, increased blood pressure, adrenal gland suppression, diabetes, the list goes on.

If you'd like to make your very own batch, we've got just the recipe:

Aloe Vera leaf:  whole leaf meat
Citrus acid:   1/2 Tbsp
Coconut oil:   1-1/2 Tbsp
Vitamin E:   5 drops
Bentonite clay:   2 tsp
Essential oil:   5-7 drops

DIRECTIONS:
Peel the exterior (green leaf portion) of the aloe vera plant. Once you have the clear meaty part of the plant separated, place it in a blender with all of the other ingredients, except bentonite clay (mixing bentonite clay with metal objects reduces its healing properties). Once all ingredients are blended evenly, stir in the bentonite clay with a wooden or plastic spoon until it's fully distributed. Pour contents in a jar of your own liking and store in the refrigerator, then use as needed.

If you don't have all the ingredients readily at your disposal; don't sweat! You can still make a pretty good product if you blend just the aloe vera leaf, citric acid and essential oil. 

Naturally, the main staple ingredient is aloe vera; but you'll definitely need at least one natural preservative -- vitamin E or citric acid -- everything else is optional. For a nice, thick and healing gel, use all of the ingredients provided above.

This recipe should last about 30 days depending on the climate and initial ripeness of your aloe vera leaf.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Grocery List Made Easy



I don't know about you... but if you're like me, and in any part of the process of revamping your diet to adopt a healthier lifestyle; then grocery shopping must now be approached differently.

Personally, I am steadily modifying eating habits as my body calls for me to do so. Take for example, sometimes I won't eat any dairy products, while other times call for absolutely no refined starches (including white potatoes). However, when I feel up to it; I can and will incorporate dairy and/or potatoes back into my diet in small portions. 

In my Internet searching, I came across this really useful chart which helps simplify trips to the grocery store and farmers markets. You can add or subtract foods or food groups to suite your regimen. For instance, I personally will omit meat from this list because I'm pescatarian; whereas you may want to exclude dairy or shell fish. 

This is only a guide to help you when you're scratching your head as to what to buy at the grocery store and can help you create new and healthy meal options. 

~Enjoy





Monday, March 10, 2014

Natural Tips on Evening Your Skin Tone

Courtesy of stockimages/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

It's true, and yes even doable...

You CAN feel comfortable and confident in your own skin without using tanning beds, bleach creams or getting elective surgery.

Although we live in the culture of now, now, now... there is a heavy price to pay when you're rushing through life, especially when it comes to your personal care. With quick fixes comes quick messes; and you're certainly worth more than a quickie... beauty routine.

So, here are some easy solutions to evening your skin tone:


Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Soap - yeah it may seem like an innocent non-assuming, foam-forming bar of soap; but its a toxic wasteland. Well not all of them, but most commercial leading bar soaps are fragrant chemicals that disrupts your hormones, throws your PH balance out of whack, and dare I say carcinogens (cancer causing). That's the short list. Don't believe me? Well, read more about it here. On the bright side, here's a link to Zum Bar Soap by Indigo Wild. It's an all natural soap brand that does a great job of cleansing without leaving behind the yucky toxins.

Exfoliate - this one is very important as the skin has three layers which are steadily replenishing itself -- think of it as you're literally shedding your skin everyday on a microscopic level. While each day as your skin becomes new, the dead skin piles on top of your new skin crowding out its space and literally stealing its shine. To that end, your skin may not be dull or uneven but in need of some serious deep scrubba-dub-dubbing.

Moisturize - many commercial leading brands are non-assuming pore cloggers. In addition to softening your skin they're also dumping in dyes, heavy metals (which disrupts the nervous system and damage organs) and synthetic ingredients that the body cannot recognize nor filter once its processed through your kidney and liver organs. A great substitute is to use a natural moisturizer, which uses whole ingredients sprouted from nature and not a lab. However use discretion here because all products claiming to be "natural" are not created equally. Using natural moisturizers will help to keep your pores unclogged and your skin moisturized, clean and clear.

Hydrate - It's true the best things in life are free... ha! or least they used to be; in this instance I'm talking about water, drink as much of it as often as you can. The recommended amount is to drink at least 6-8 glasses per day. I hope you're sipping some refreshing water while you're reading this.


Image courtesy of posterize / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Eat - who knew that refined sugars and carbs and saturated fats would clog your pores and dim the brightness of your skin. Well, now you do! A good rule of thumb to take note of is if you're eating foods that are not good for you internally, they are equally bad for you externally. For instance, refined sugars and carbs cause your insulin to spike, then creating an inflamed environment throughout the body. This in turn causes your organs to work overtime to get the body to return to its natural, normal state. While the body is working overtime internally, this leaves little to no nutrients to help nourish the skin externally. Read more about this process here. Eat fresh fruits and veggies in as many colors and varieties as you can. If and when you can, eat local foods for added nutrients and eco-friendly goodness. A good rule of thumb; however, is that your plate should look like the rainbow with a variety of fruits and veggies that are different colors.

Sleep - do not slack up on getting your beauty rest. You deserve it. The lack of sleep causes your skin to age. Don't believe me? Well the proof is in the pudding with dark circles, fine lines and drab looking skin when you are sleep deprived. Without sleep your body begins to stress and releases the stress hormone, cortisol which breaks down collagen. What's collagen? Just the natural protein your body produces that keeps your skin even, smooth and pliable.



*NOTE:  As you'll see on our site we create and sell our very own natural products. Although we would like you to buy from us, this is not a ploy to get you to do so, posts such as this one is for informational purposes only. We wish you good health and encourage you to keep learning and growing on your journey. If you have feedback about the above topic, please share your comments with us below or reply to us via email at amourallnaturals@gmail.com. Thanks for stopping by, we're glad you came!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Game Night: Redefined




So a few weeks ago, me and a friend played her new board game. We had a blast! Me being me and my friend being herself... discussed and broke down the social, political and educational components the game implied. 

At first we thought this game was for suited for kids, but oh boy were we wrong. Although kids can enjoy this game, we had the most fun, as this game is best suited for those interested in learning herbs.

We took our time playing the game as we expanded our herbal knowledge, sipped team laughed at our setbacks and worked together to make it to the finish line, (there are no losers in this game). It was a fun night.

If you want to check out the game for yourself, here's a link to John Gallagher's Learning Herbs' Wild Craft board game. 


~Toodles

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Art of Juggling






So, I've been pretty busy making products, developing new formulas, preparing to move and looking for additional   intensive courses and certified herbal schools to expand my knowledge (hey, if you have any pointers, please share in the comments section below). I'll stop there, because I haven't begun to talk about work, family and social life, all of which are very important to me. Needless to say I've got my work cut out for me.

Recently, I was sharing with friends how this schedule is taking its toll. Fortunately, one friend showed me a gold mine, a book she was reading called "Juggling Elephants" by Jones Loflin and Todd Musig. This book is about how to juggle a busy schedule like a ringmaster juggling a three ring circus act.

I was instantly enthralled, so I downloaded it as soon as I got home. So far, the book is just what I needed. It's concise, witty, detailed and to the point (thanks guys!).

Anyways, if you're interested in reading it for yourself here's a link where you can purchase a copy. 

~Happy juggling!