27 April 2018

How to Eliminate Waste and Lower the Cost of Your Period

I received an email after my last #wastefreeliving post saying I was missing THE DIVA CUP from my post. But, I wasn't missing it. I was saving it for an upcoming post I have been working on about waste-free, heathy and economical feminine hygiene products.

In previous posts I have discussed organic tampons and their benefits. But what if I told you I have 2 solutions that are better for you, better for the earth AND better for your wallet? Whether you are a "pad" or a "tampon" girl, you have two new options for reusable female hygiene products.
The Hannah Pad
The Hannah Pad is a washable pad made of organic, breathable cotton. It is unbleached and undyed, containing no harmful chemicals. Since the sensitive skin "down there" is very thin thus easily absorbs toxins into the bloodstream, it's important to avoid using anything treated with chemicals such as conventional pads and tampons.

What's more, is the fact that the average woman disposes of 16,000 pads and tampons in their lifetime, and my concern includes the plastic wrap and applicators. If you are using organic tampons most of them are compostable (I keep a compost bag in all of my washrooms now), but average brands such as Kotex and Tampax are not organic and often include plastic applicators which end up in landfills. The Hannah Pad is made of organic cotton and should last for years, however when they are at the end of their life, they are entirely compostable!

If you are thinking about trying the Hannah Pads, I highly recommend the Hannah Pad Starter Set which includes 2 small, 3 medium and 2 overnight pads as well as a storage box. If you sign up for their newsletter you can save $10 off your first order!

If you aren't accustomed to wearing pads and would rather use tampons, another option for less waste is a period cup. Many people are aware of the Diva Cup which is sold widely across Canada in drugstores. But today I want to talk about the Dot Cup.
Dot Cup
The Dot Cup is a period cup which is inserted into your bits for up to 12-hours and can hold up to 28oz of liquid. It is reusable, made of 100% silicone, and can be emptied into the toilet for convenience. It also comes with a cute carrying case for when it is not in use.

Why I like it? Silicone is long lasting, non-irritating and does not usually cause allergic reactions. The Dot Cup is non-toxic and eliminates the need for pads and tampons which end up in landfills and can cost a lot. The best part is, you can feel good knowing that with your purchase of a Dot Cup you are giving one to another girl in need. Many girls around the world miss school or work during their period as they do not have access to feminine hygiene products. Feel good knowing you are helping another girl out during menstruation so she can continue to work or go to school with no interruption.

The Dot Cup costs $32 (USD) and is a small investment towards a waste-free when you consider how much it costs every month to buy tampons, especially organic!

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25 April 2018

How to Manifest Your Goals

Lately I have been very open about my future goals, and the more people I tell, the closer I seem to get to achieving them. A good friend of mine is a social-media "mogul" and has helped me a lot in understanding the blogging world. She was recently in California and had an "aha" moment about her future goals and shared it with me. I couldn't help but cheer her on. I am a firm believer in doing what makes you happy, and reaching for the stars. No dream is too big!

The more she and I talked about manifesting goals and getting where you want to be, the more I thought I HAD to share my secrets to achieving personal happiness with my followers.

1. Think Positively
"If you think it you can be it"I believe is the quote from the movie/novel that Oprah RAVES about, The Secret. I am sure many of you have seen it while scrolling through Netflix. I am also sure many of you rolled your eyes when you heard the quote I opened this paragraph with. Regardless of whether you believe in the Law of Attraction, there is no denying that if you think positive things, you will start to see positive changes. You are your own destiny, so think long and hard about where you want to see your life go, and the more you manifest this, the closer you'll get to your goals.

2. Believe in Yourself
If you don't believe in yourself, no one will. If you lack confidence, people will sense it. Confident people can achieve anything, so believe in yourself and others will too!

"There are people less qualified than you, doing the things you want to do, simply because they decided to believe in themselves. Period" - anonymous

3. Surround Yourself with Positive People
Positive people, and people who convey the same convictions as you are likely to encourage you to reach for your goals and never give up. You are always going to have bad days, but the bad days make the good days even better. Like-minded people, and other people with ambitious goals are going to motivate you, and you them!
Similarly, if someone doesn't believe in you, prove them wrong. It's now your ammunition to go above and beyond your goals and achieve ultimate "status".

4. Be Yourself
This is the most important step in achieving your goals. People can smelly phoniness. If you be yourself, regardless of what other people think, you can achieve anything. It may take longer than you'd like, but eventually everyone who believes in them self is successful.

Here are some ways to start manifesting your goals and making the changes in your life you need to make in order to start seeing progress.

*Start Journaling*
This is my favourite way to set goals. Or, make daily goals. Write them down and follow-up at the end of the day. If you're achieving your daily goals you can start to make bigger goals. Now, set 1, 5 and 10-year goals. Your long-term goals can change, and often do change as you grow and change. These goals don't have to be met, so don't be upset if in 5 years you haven't achieved a goal you set. Your long-term goals are there to give you something to reach for, but maybe as you get closer and closer to that goal you want to see something BIGGER! Keep writing down your goals and taking one step a day towards achieving them. For some, writing their goals down IS their big step for the day.

FACT: The prettier the journal you get, the more exciting it will be to use it every day. I use Crayola markers to make every page of my journal fun and inviting. This way every day I want to get back to it!

*Meditate Often*
Meditation is a great way to calm your mind, take a mental break from reality, and focus on YOU. The more you focus on yourself and start to think about your own wants and needs, the easier it will be to start working towards your goals.

TIP: If you don't know how to meditate on your own, use the Calm.com app for daily meditations.


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23 April 2018

Goop Skincare Dupes

I apologize in advance to my girl Gwynie for this post. But I have 6 Goop dupes that will cost you half as much as the Goop by Juice Beauty products will. Don't get me wrong, I love Goop. Like LOVE. I have been using Goop products since I picked up a few products in Chicago last summer. In fact, the cleanser and day cream are quite possibly two of the most addictive products I have ever used. But, for $265 CAD (plus tax) for just 2 products, and on my new “homeowner” budget, I had to find equally amazing products that cost less.

All of the "dupes" below are equally organic, safe, toxin-free and work JUST AS WELL as the Goop by Juice Beauty products do. And, to be clear, Gwyneth Paltrow was a fan of Beautycounter's Cleansing Balm before creating her own line of AMAZING products!

Check out my Goop dupes below! (all prices listed in Canadian Dollars)

Cleanse:
Swap the Luminous Melting Cleanser ($135) for Cleansing Balm ($94)
Savings: $41

Exfoliate:
Swap the Exfoliating Instant Facial ($175) for Nourishing Cream Exfoliator ($43)
Savings: $132
The Nourishing Cream Exfoliator is gentle enough for everyday use, but effective in sweeping away impurities, to uncover fresh, radiant skin. Formulated with jojoba beads and organic coconut oil to slough away dead skin cells while soothing and hydrating skin.

Nourish:
Swap the Enriching Face Oil ($150) for No. 1 Brightening Facial Oil ($82)
Savings: $68
The No. 1 Brightening Facial Oil is citrus-scented and fast-absorbing to deliver intense hydration while it evens out the skin tone. It is lightweight and silk smooth, and perfect for all skin types.

Moisturize:
Swap the Revitalizing Day Moisturizer ($140) for Rejuvenating Day Cream ($87)
Savings: $53
The Rejuvenating Day Cream is formulated with omega-rich oils and vitamin-rich fruit extracts to hydrate and brighten skin, while spilanthes acmela flower extract helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Intense Moisture:
Swap the Replenishing Night Cream ($195) for Countermatch Recovery Sleeping Cream ($67)
Savings: $128
The Recovery Sleeping Cream is an advanced blend of hyaluronic acid, plum oil and tara gum, which create a protective layer to shield your skin from losing moisture, and replenish and revitalize it while you sleep. It uses Bio-Mimic Technology, suitable for all skin-types, ensuring your skin is given everything it needs and nothing it doesn't.

Treat the Eyes:
Swap the Perfecting Eye Cream ($125) for Rejuvenating Eye Cream ($72)
Savings: $53
The Rejuvenating Eye Cream has been proven to reduce puffiness, diminish fine lines and wrinkles, and the appearance of dark circles, using wild algae and caffeine.

Total Savings: $475
Total Cost: $445; which means you can buy this entire routine TWICE! for the same cost.
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22 April 2018

#wastefreeliving

Happy Earth Day!

I had planned for this post this later in May, once I moved and implemented all of the changes I am about to talk about. But, since it is Earth Day, I thought there was no better time.

A new home means a fresh start, and the ability to implement amazing changes to the way we live our day-to-day life. We recycle, we shop consciously, we use our green bin, etc. but I have been brainstorming and collecting over the past 3 months to create a home that is free of toxins, and is virtually waste-free.

This means, no more parchment/wax paper, no more Ziploc bags, no more plastic grocery/produce bags, less plastic, and more...

There are so many amazing products on the market that can eliminate waste and reduce The Carbon Footprint we are leaving on this earth. Read below for some of my favourite ways to start #wastefreeliving ...
Replace plastic wrap with Abeego Beeswax Wrap
Reusable, breathable, antibacterial, plastic-free and compostable. Plus, they smell delish. They also save the bees (which I am very passionate about as I could not live without honey). It's also very nice saving money on plastic wrap, which leaches toxins into your food and ends up in landfills, never breaking down. Abeego also ships free in Canada!
Replace plastic produce bags with Norwex Reusable Produce Bags
Washable, mesh produce bags which can carry a full load of fresh fruits and veggies. Reusable and recyclable, they prevent plastics from ending up in landfills. They are also non-toxic and non-leaching so your food stays fresh and pure.
Replace plastic grocery bags with Credo Bags EcoShopper
Strong and easy to carry, it also stores small and folds up into its own pouch. It can hold up to 20 pounds of groceries and is washable. Plus, Credo Bag is headquartered in Montreal. #shoplocal
Replace disposable razors with an epilator
Shaving Cream and Razors cost money, not to mention the plastic ends up in landfills. Replace your razors and shaving cream with an epilator. It only hurts the first time - I promise! Plus, over time it thins out hair and is needed less frequently. I consider it a money-saving and earth-protecting move on my part!
Replace Ziploc bags with Stasher Bags
Plastic-free alternatives to regular Ziploc bags, these are made of 100% pure silicone and can be used to cook and store food. They are also dishwasher-friendly, and come in two convenient sizes. I have one of each right now, in Aqua, and I would like about 10 more! They are so amazing.

These are just a few ways we are switching our ways in order to help the environment. There are so many other ways and if you have ideas, share them in the comments below.

Remember to shop local, and shop B Corps and sustainable brands whenever possible.
Today shouldn't be Earth Day, every day should.


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20 April 2018

How to Apply Your Skincare Products

I know what you’re thinking: “I know how to apply my skincare products!” But do you really?

Many of us assume we are applying our skincare correctly if we are applying them at all. I know many of my followers are busy moms, so if you get around to washing your face and applying skincare you’ve won at the day!

But there is no point in applying it if you don’t apply it properly. It won’t absorb properly, it’ll sit on the skin, or it’ll end up clogging pores and causing breakouts. So let me help!

Your skincare is meant to be applied from thinnest to thickest. The thinnest products are usually the most vitamin-rich. Take serums for example. All of the nutrients your skin needs are hidden in your serum. If you don’t apply it first, oil-heavy moisturizers will block your pores from absorbing any serum.

Here is the correct order to apply your skincare products:

1. Cleanser - Wash away toxins, dirt and make-up and prep skin for products.
2. Mask - Deep clean pores and remove dead skin cells to reveal more radiant skin.
3. Toner/Mist - Using a cotton pad soaked in toner, gently glide the pad all over your face and neck. Similarly, spritz a fine layer of mist all over your face and neck. Let dry before moving on to the next step.
4. Serum - A little goes a long way. Apply serum to your finger tips, and rub both hands together. Gently massage the serum all over, in a circular motion until completely dissolved.
5. Spot treatment - Treat imperfections before applying moisturizer.
6. Moisturizer - Moisturize following spot treatments, as spot treatments are often overdrawing and added moisture will stop the treatment from overdoing and irritating skin, but will still allow it to do its job.
7. Oil - Since oil is the thickest product, it should be applied last. It will seal in the first 6 steps of your routine and ensure your other products get to do their job. Oil is also an added layer of moisture - something I believe even those with the oiliest skin can't get enough of!

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16 April 2018

Clean Your Routine

I love when I hear from friends, family and clients who tell me they want to clean up their skincare routine. The first step is knowing you are using toxic ingredients, and the second step is reaching out and searching for cleaner, safer options. So to help those of you who are looking to clean up their routine I've created a short 3-step starter's guide for cleaning up your routine.
Step 1: Consider your "why?"
Why do you want to clean up your routine? Did you have an a-ha! moment, or has someone else encouraged you? Is it because you simply did not know before, and now you are more educated? Whatever your reason, I want you to know I am proud you are here today and I'd love to share my why with you. Once you discover a cleaner, safer routine and start to see all of its benefits, I have no doubt you'l want to share your why with everyone you know!

Step 2: Toss your toxic products.
This can be a very hard part of switching to cleaner products. We see the amount of money we have spent on harmful products and aren't always ready to just "toss" them. So don't! A great way to switch to cleaner products, is to start the swap product-by-product. What I have been doing with many of my clients is suggesting they switch to cleaner products the next time they finish their current products. Next time you need face wash, don't buy the same face wash, buy a toxin-free face wash. Is your deodorant almost done? Perfect, buy a clean deodorant such as Native this time. One-by-one you'll get to your clean beauty goals and I can help you find amazing products that are just as luxurious as your toxic ones!

Step 3: Build a clean, safer routine.
Toxin-free skincare has come a long way. For years I was trying "green" and "natural" products which were awful. The deodorants weren't effective, the face wash wasn't removing my makeup and the makeup wasn't applying how I wanted it to. Today, there are so many amazing brands on the market that are safe, toxin-free, and comparable to luxury brands such as YSL (which many of you know is an old favourite of mine that I have stopped using).

To give you one example, here is one of the best switches I have made:
Switching from YSL's Touch Eclat was something I didn't think was going to be possible. It has amazing coverage, goes on smooth and doesn't settle in creases. When I started selling Beautycounter one of the first products I tried was the Touchup Skin Concealer because I could resonate with the packaging (they look so similar!) and was hoping it would be just as good. And it is! The difference? Beauty counter's concealer is made without harmful toxins, and it's formulated with Knotgrass Extract to reduce the appearance of fine lines, dark circles and make skin appear brighter and more even.

If you need help switching to clean products, please reach out. I have so many favourite products and brands, and have done ALL of the research and testing so I can help my clients find a regime that will work for their needs, and on their budget!
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06 April 2018

Why I Chose Beautycounter

It’s been 2 months (yesterday) since I joined Beautycounter and the results have been overwhelming.

At first I was quite skeptical of even my own ability to share my love of a company with people as most MLM companies get eye rolls and backlash. Trust me, I get a lot of eye rolls and backlash, especially on Facebook, but it’s my love and trust in these products that keeps me going.
So why Beautycounter?
Well, many of you know that I try to live a clean, healthy, but balanced life. I am quite particular about what I eat, mostly due to food sensitivities and the impact my diet has on my skin, and am neurotic about physical activity (6 days a week or else!). When relaunching my yoga and wellness business after a 3-year hiatus I wanted more to offer my clients beyond the mat. The yoga practice goes beyond the mat and includes diet and self care practices which exclude toxins, whether they are from food, environment, personal care products...

I started out as a Beautycounter client before joining as a Consultant. I actually thought about becoming a Consultant for a year before finally making the plunge. For me, it is less about making extra money and more about educating and providing my clients, friends and family with safe products they can trust.

With Beautycounter you don’t need to read the label. I know that their team of experts have done the research and have omitted any ingredients they know to be harmful or have long-term heath effects. For example, we recently launched a new line-up of safe, long-lasting lipsticks which were testing 3 times for heavy-metal contaminants such as Lead, which can often be found in the pigments used in cosmetics. Yes, they tested then 3 times before they hit the market!
There are so many clean brands out there, trust me I try ALL of them. Many of them are amazing or having a few amazing products in their line-up. But what I love most about  Beautycounter is the consistency of quality in their products. I haven’t been let down by any of them. Of course some are simply not suited for my skin type, but there is a product in their lineup for every. single. one. of my needs—now if they can just get a men’s line already so I can get Tyler to switch!

If you think you'd be interested in some of what Beautycounter has to offer, check out the Beautycounter site here, and follow my VIP group on Facebook for updates on new products, sales and more!
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02 April 2018

Festival Season Essentials

We're rollin' into festival season like...
One of my best memories is Coachella. It was such a bucket list adventure I had to take, so 4 years ago me and a couple ladies hit the tarmac (literally) and jetted off to Palm Springs for a long weekend. It was the best time, and in the next few years I plan on heading back for a StageCoach experience. But this time I will be better prepared. After 4 straight days in the sun I sure learned my lesson on what you need to survive a weekend of dancing, screaming and over-exposure to sand and sun.

Sunscreen
Sun protection is so important, but over and over I hear about how toxic sunscreen is, and how the toxins in most sunscreens outweigh its benefits. I switched to the Beautycounter sunscreen before my last trip and I loved that it was 2-in-1. It was gentle enough to use on my sensitive acne-prone skin, and a big enough bottle for me to use for my whole body.

The active ingredient is Zinc, but it didn't go on white and absorbed very easily. I have found that many natural sunscreens are quite thick and hard to rub in. They often leave while residue on your skin and feel quite heavy. The Beautycounter sunscreen beats all of the other natural sunscreens as it is lightweight, not greasy and the price tag is really reasonable. For quick touch ups they have a really great small sunscreen stick for face which is perfect to use on the kids - who are always eager to get outside and don't always want to sit still while you apply sunscreen.

Shop sunscreen here.

Lip Balm
I'll save you my Flawless in 5 schpeal, and redirect you to a previous post of mine on how to look Instagram-ready in just 5 minutes. You'll thank me later when you wake up late after a late night party and have to hurry out the door to catch your favourite artist perform.

Instead, I am going to urge you to pack a lip balm for this trip. I can say it over and over, and no one ever believes me, but you're going to the desert. There is a reason why only cacti live in the desert. It's DRY. So pack some lip balm and you'll have kissable lips all weekend long. Beautycounter Lip Conditioner nourishes and protects lips using the power of shea butter, avocado oil, jojoba oil and meadowfoam seed oil

Shop Lip Conditioners here.

Dew Skin
Pool parties and dancing in the dessert, you shouldn't have to give up the glamour. But you also should not be wearing a heavy foundation. Let your pores breath but still look photo-ready with a tinted moisturizer. The Dew Skin tinted moisturized has an SPF 20 which provides sun protection while evening your skin tone. It is also infused with vitamin C and peony extract which reduce the appearance of age spots and promote brighter, more radiant skin.

Shop Dew Skin here.

Wipes
After a long day of partying, you won't want have the energy for a full skincare regime. Use the Beautycounter One-Step Makeup Removing Wipes to whisk away the entire day of makeup and dust build-up. Oil-free with no added fragrance, these aloe-infused wipes remove EVERYTHING, even your hard to remove eye makeup, with no need to rinse. Rest easy knowing they are biodegradable and won't harm the environment.

Shop wipes here.

Facial Mist
Facial mists are a such a necessity in your festival bag for midday refreshes. It gets HOT out there, and it's super dry. So refresh your dry, sun drenched skin with a few mists throughout the day.

Beautycounter has 3 amazing facial mists; Brightening, Plumping and Balancing. My absolute favourite is the Balancing spray. It is great for anyone with combination/oily skin, and anyone who suffers from acne. If you have dryer skin, the Plumping Facial Mist is for you! It has peony extract which firms the skin and reintroduces moisture to dehydrated skin. The Brightening spray is perfect for aging skin. It reduces the appearance of age spots and promotes a brighter complexion. I'd say for mid-desert, the brightening or plumping are your best options!

Shop facial mists here.
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