To Make / After-Sun Balm

 

     Good morning! Today, I'm sharing a DIY that's essential for summer: after-sun balm! Regardless of skin tone, and susceptibility to sun burns, any sun exposure to the skin damages it. If you're lucky, it's not visible (like with burns or sun spots), but thanks to UV cameras, we know it's there! That being said, there are ways to treat your skin after being out in the sun, and my favorite (and most natural way) is with pure aloe vera. I have a aloe plant, and haven't utilized its gel until now! It's bizarre, but each stalk is only covered with green skin and is actually filled with a clear gel column. All you do is remove the skin and then mash the gel and it's ready to use! Get the rest of the how-to below! 

Ingredients:

- 1/2 cup of aloe vera 

- 1 tbs. of beeswax

- 1 tbs. of jojoba oil

- 1/2 cup of shea butter

- 1/2 cup of coconut oil

- 20 drops of lavender essential oil

Directions:

1. Melt down the beeswax, shea butter, coconut oil, and jojoba oil together in a double boiler. 

2. Transfer to your container, and add your aloe and essential oil. 

3. Let set for a few hours, until fully hardened and cooled. Enjoy!

To Make / Laundry Detergent

 

     Hi there! I've really been enjoying Homesong, a blog about topics ranging from motherhood to essential oils, written by Amanda Watters, a KC local. She has inspired so many small changes I've implemented in my life, and most of them always come back to providing a clean and natural, well-rounded home for Bailey. I've made quite a few of her DIY's already, and I have another one to share with you today! This homemade, all natural laundry detergent is everything you could want, and it actually works, which can't be said for all homemade cleaning supplies. Get the how-to below!

Ingredients / Materials:

- one bar of Dr. Bronners castille soap

- 1 cup of washing soda

- 1 cup of borax

- 20 drops of essential oils, your choice

Directions:

1. Chop up your bar of soap in quarters, and then quarter those.

2. Add in all of your ingredients to a food processor, and blend, then add the essential oils. 

3. Use about 1 tbs. for an average size load, and you're good to go!

To Dye / Tea Towels

 

      Good morning! A month or so ago, I came across a new (to me) way to naturally dye fabrics. I was mostly drawn to this natural dye because the end result is my favorite color, blush pink. It sounded very unusual that you could get this dreamy shade from avocado pits! But it's the real deal, and it's remarkably simple. Get the how-to below!

Materials:

- about 10 avocado pits

- a cotton tea towel

- water

Directions:

1. Wash off all of your avocado pits, and place in a large sauce pan. Put in your towel, and cover completely with cool water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about an hour. Let cool.

2. Let air dry overnight, then wash and dry like normal.

3. Store dye in an air tight jar and enjoy!

To Find / Something Organic

 

     Hi there! Just wanted to share one of Bailey's favorite snacks today. I always try to get her to eat healthy, and for the most part she does, but snacks are where this is trickiest for us. Girl likes her chocolate, so I looked around for something organic that she would actually love.

     We ended up on these Horizon Organics Chocolate Snack Graham Cookies! Bailey's a huge fan, and loves pretending to be the Cookie Monster while eating them. She also is in love with cows, so that was a big selling point for her.

     Thanks for reading, and have a fun Wednesday!

To Find / Something Natural

 

     Good morning! For this month's natural product, I wanted to put a spotlight on one of my favorite essential oils: grapefruit! Aura Cacia makes awesome oils, and the grapefruit instantly lifts your mood.

      The citrus really does make you joyful! It's light and sweet, and perfect for just dabbing onto your wrists or incorporating it into a spray or salve.

     My personal favorite use is in body scrubs. I plan to make a summer one soon that will be bursting with the scent of grapefruit. Thanks for reading, and have a fun Monday!

To Make / Linen Spray

 

     Hi there! I was recently combing through Homesong's DIY's, and found this really simple "recipe" for an all natural linen spray. I've been wanting to try one out for awhile as a pillow spray, and this was the perfect opportunity! I tweaked the ingredients a little to make it lavender scented instead of pine scented. Get the how-to below!

Materials:

- witch hazel

- distilled water

- lavender essential oil

- a small funnel

- a glass spritzer bottle (I find mine at my local health foods store)

Directions:

1. Fill your bottle about 1/3 of the way with witch hazel.

2. Add in 20 drop of lavender essential oil, and then fill the rest of the bottle with distilled water.

3. Place the lid on top, and shake for a second to combine all of the ingredients. Spritz and enjoy!

To Find / Something Natural

 

     Hi there! Just wanted to share my new favorite face mask today! I picked it out as a Christmas gift, and have been loving it ever since.

     It's from Moon Rivers Naturals, and is made from turmeric and calendula. Both of those ingredients are anti-inflammatory, which is perfect for my always rosy skin. 

     My favorite part about the mask though, is that it dries into your pores super well. When you remove it, you can really feel it cleaning them out, and afterwords, your pores look noticeably smaller. Highly recommended! 

     Thanks for reading, and have a fun Monday!

To Find Something Natural / January

 

     Good morning! This month's natural product is a necessity. Shampoo can be an iffy subject for people, mostly because they never really do what the bottle says. Typically promising volume, curl enhancement, dandruff relief, etc., a shampoo will usually work once (the first time you use it) and then your texture will go back to what it was before. This is because hair shafts literally get used to the product, much like skincare products and different workouts will stop having an effect once the body adapts and adjusts. It's the shock that you need! That being said, shampoos are also sometimes the most chemical filled, and it's just plain unnecessary.

     Enter: this organic herbal shampoo from Avalon Organics. I typically am after a clarifying shampoo, one that will keep my hair clean and simple. I'm also partial to rosemary, so this volumizing edition is perfect!

     It has somehow thickened my hair quite a bit, especially at the roots. I think people forget that before the invention of modern day chemical filled products, people miraculously used natural things to stay clean (by those days standards, of course). Herbs have always been effective for bodily use, and I see no reason to divert from that. Thanks for reading, and have a great day!

For a Face Mask

 

     Good morning! I have a super easy and *fall-ish* diy for you guys today! With the pumpkin craze in full swing, I wanted to point out that pumpkin's not only delicious but great for your skin too. Pumpkin is filled with skin nourishing enzymes and vitamins that make your skin glow. Masks are also super popular at the moment, so a pumpkin face mask is a no-brainer. This mask only requires two ingredients (because the pumpkin has everything on it's own, really), and you can customize it based on your skin type. I included apple cider vinegar in mine, to act as a healthy astringent in the mask, but for those with dry skin, replace the vinegar with honey and you'll be set! Get the how-to below.

Materials:

- 1/2 cup of pumpkin

- 1 tbs. of apple cider vinegar (or honey for dry skin)

- jar for storage

- mixing spoon

Directions:

Step 1 - Mix together your ACV and pumpkin in you jar, and store in the fridge.

Step 2 - To use, apply a generous amount and leave on for at least 10 minutes. Then, rinse and moisturize. Enjoy!

To Find Something Natural / Pt. 5

 

    Good morning! For the natural find of October, I had quite a few things to pick from. For some reason, this is the time of year that I run out of everything at the same time, so I decided to replace everything with a more natural and organic product. 

     To replace my Bioderma Micellar Water, I decided on witch hazel. Witch hazel is an excellent toner that's known for its pore-refining qualities while also being less drying than other toners. It's also 100% natural, derived from the North American witch hazel shrub, which means it's the perfect astringent for my sensitive skin.  

     I've used a lot of other toners in the past, and they all work fairly well, but are just too drying. I don't need any of that, especially when the seasons change and the air dries out. The next time you run out of a product, look into natural options to replace it with, and you'll be pleasantly surprised! There's a lot out there that you just have to dig a little for. Thanks for reading, and have a great Friday! 

To Find Something Natural / Pt. 4

 

     Hi there! For this month's natural find, I wanted to introduce these locally-made bath salts that I picked up at Columbia's Farmers Market. They are made by Niobrara Farms, and are composed of only the best organic ingredients!

      They had a lot of products available at the Market, but I chose these bath salts due to my love of baths, especially with the colder seasons coming up. I'm also a big grapefruit scent fan, so the amazing smell is just a bonus.

     Unlike other bath salts I've used, these dissolve really well in the tub! Usually, salts just sink to the bottom and don't do much, but these worked like a charm. I highly recommend you check out their Etsy shop (linked above) for all of their other products. They don't have the bath salts available online, but the soaps are calling my name, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. Thanks for reading, and have a great day!

To Try Something New, Pt. 2

 

     Hi there! In early June, a new cafe + market opened up in Columbia, and this amazing place is called Nourish. Columbia had been severely lacking in nutritional restaurants, but in the past few years has tried to up it's game. Main Squeeze is the OG healthy restaurant in Columbia, offering vegan and vegetarian options to the college-kid set. Then a couple of years ago, Lucky's market + bar opened to everyone's joy. Other than the organic sections in Gerbes and Hyvee, and the overpriced Natural Grocers, Columbia didn't really have an organic and accessible place to grocery shop. The organic sections in the regular grocery stores were ok, but small. Lucky's has a bar, serving local beer, and is a organic and health centered grocery store that doesn't cost a pretty penny for good food. It was the center of healthy eating in Columbia until Nourish opened up.

     To be clear, Nourish isn't your average market or grocery store. It offers a small selection of in-house made products that you can purchase and stock up on. They make clean, vegan truffles, which no one I know can resist. They make other delicious desserts too, all clean and healthy with no sugar added! Also, they make cold-pressed juices and cashew milks, which are too good.

      On the restaurant side of things, they offer an amazing breakfast and lunch menu, along with kid's options (yay for Bailey!). I've only had lunch there, but that quinoa pasta drenched in avocado pepperjack sauce was to die for. It was spicy and filling, but wasn't too heavy like typical mac and cheese is. I also tried the raw cacao cashew milk, and it was so rich and tasty!

       The overall aesthetic of Nourish is on point too. From the plants in every corner to the packaging on their juices and milks. It is clean and simple and better than your average design that you'll find in Columbia. Let's just say this place was desperately needed, and I'm sure it'll become a fixture in the local restaurant repertoire. Thanks for reading, and have a great day!

To Find Something Natural, Pt. 3

 

      Hello! This month's natural product is my favorite essential oil from Aura Cacia. I love the grapefruit scent, and now wear it in place of perfume most days! It's just as the label boasts: joyful. It definitely puts a smile on my face the second I smell it.

     Essential oils are a great natural option with many uses. You can do like I do, and use it instead of perfume. You can also apply different ones to the skin for different ailments. I stated in my last natural post that tea tree essential oil is excellent for blemishes, but is also just a great all around antiseptic. Another thing you can do with your essential oils is use them for their scent. A few drops of lavender on your pillow will be excellent for calmness before you go to sleep. You can add lemon to some homemade laundry detergent to achieve that fresh smell. There are endless possibilities, so go buy some and get to experimenting!

To Find Something Natural

 

     Hi there! This month's Natural Find is an essential to have, if you're prone to getting a pimple every now and then. The Burt's Bee's Herbal Blemish Stick has been on my list since I ran out of my old standby, Mario Badescu's Drying Lotion. I loved the drying lotion, but didn't like that it was just a ton of chemicals combined with what is basically calamine lotion. Calamine's great for bug bites and what not, but I ended up feeling like it was a little unnecessary as far as treating pimples go. Burt's Bee's form of treatment is tea tree oil extract. Tea tree extract has long been lauded as the best treatment for acne, because of it's ability to dry out the pimple, but not the surrounding skin. The stick contains another 10 herbal oils that work together to keep skin clear and exfoliated. It's 100% verified natural, and has the perfect little roller ball applicant, so it's not messy at all, like other oils can be.

     My first experience with it was awesome! It goes against my nature to put any oil on my face, since usually I'm trying to keep it as dry as possible, but it absorbed quickly and after I washed my face the next morning, it didn't feel oily at all. The redness of my problem area was gone, as was the little bump I was trying to get rid of! There was still a little spot, but that also went away by the end of the day. The best part about this was that it didn't irritate my sensitive skin, which most acne treatments do. Usually, people try and treat pimples with really strong products, in hopes that the strength of the product will work faster than other treatments. Not true for me, as anything stronger than "mild" just makes my skin even more red and irritated. As far as I can tell, the stick is my best option, and I'm super happy to have found it! Thanks for reading, and have an awesome Monday!