Tag Archives: routine

How to Keep A Regular Routine Working From Home

image0-2

Considering current events, many of you are likely seeking how to keep a regular routine working from home. Though the transition might feel jarring, take it as a chance to recalibrate in both your personal and professional life.

-Prepare your coffee brewing the night before.

Doing this ahead of time will streamline your mornings and get you caffeinated sooner after you wake. Check out my favorite coffee and vegan/paleo/delicious superfood coffee creamer here.

-Create a workspace that suits your workflow

Your line of work will largely dictate what this requires. For me, all I need is my laptop. I can work from the couch most of the time. Figure out if you work best from a desk, laptop, notebook, phone, etc. Keep this space organized and tidy as you start to establish your new routine.

-Minimize distractions

Depending on how you best operate, you may be better off turning off the TV & music while working. Others (like me), actually like having things going on in the background. Also, the work I do allows that. Find which route works best for you.

-Keep moving! Plan your movement + lay out your workout clothes ahead of time.

If you have a whiteboard or even notepad in your new workout space, try writing out your workout ahead of time. Laying out your clothes ahead of time, similar to prepping your coffee the night before, will streamline your workflow and keep you rolling right along as you meander between workflow to personal care activities at home.

-Keep taking your supplements, eating healthy & taking care of your body.

This is one of the most important keys to making this transition to working at home easier for you. When you feel good, you work more efficiently–plain and simple. Don’t use this as a time to eat cruddy food and let your good habits drop off.

Food-wise, I stick to a paleo-inspired eating approach (dairy and gluten free). Supplement wise, I make sure I take my fave probiotic (code feelmoregooder15 for 15% your subscription), my women’s multivitamin (code feelmoregooder to save 20%) and Vitamin D (code JesNow10 to save $10 of $40 or more).

-Take breaks & go outside.

There a value of fresh air and being away from your devices that’s intangible. Though some studies do back this up (and sure, that’s great for some people to know), it’s positive for you to go immerse yourself in the outdoors simply because it reconnects us to our nature.

Advertisements

Wash Hair Less: The Secret to Hair Goals

Got hair goals? Trying washing your hair less often. Watch my full video for more!

Thayer’s Natural Witch Hazel Review

20131218-173549.jpg

Thayer’s Natural Remedies

Overall Rating: images

About Thayer’s:

The Benefits:

Thayers Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Formula Astringents and Alcohol-Free Toners are soothing, natural treatments that cleanse, tone and soothe your skin. Made of extract from the Witch Hazel shrub and a blend of other time-tested ingredients, these natural elixirs containing important tannins have been a fixture in medicine cabinets for generations. Once you use them, you’ll know why.”

cucumber_MED

Cucumber Witch Hazel

Thayer’s Description:

Stay Cool as a Cucumber, Whatever the Weather.

THAYERS® Alcohol-Free Cucumber Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Formula Toner cooling essence has a deliciously serene effect on the body. Experience our formula for serenity now! • Fragrance-Free • Paraben-Free • Naturally Preserved • Hypoallergenic.

Ingredients:

Purified Water, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf (Certified Organic Filet Of Aloe Vera), Glycerin (Vegetable), Hamamelis Virginiana (made from Certified Organic Witch Hazel) Extract, Cucumis Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract, Citric Acid, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed Extract.”

wh_lemon_bottle_MED

Lemon Witch Hazel

Thayer’s Description:

Like a Tall Glass of Lemonade for Your Skin.

Thayers Lemon Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Formula is a fresh-smelling, gentle astringent that cleanses and refreshes the skin with a delightful lemon essence.

Ingredients:

Purified Water, SD Alcohol 40-B (Natural Grain) 10%, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Certified Organic Filet of Aloe Vera), Hamamelis Virgiana Extract (made from Certified Organic Witch Hazel), Cymbopogon Schoenanthus (Lemongrass) Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Peel Extract, Rubus Fruticosus (Blackberry) Leaf Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract, Urtica Dioica (Nettle) Extract, Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Extract, Fragrance (Natural Lemon), Citric Acid.”
wh_peach_bottle_MED

Peach Witch Hazel

Thayer’s Description:

An Orchard in a Bottle. 

Thayers Peach Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Formula is nectar for the skin. It’s got all the soothing properties you’ve come to love in our Witch Hazel with Aloe Vera Formula Astringents, with a gorgeous, fresh-off-the-tree scent.

Ingredients: 

Purified Water, SD Alcohol 40-B (Natural Grain) 10%, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice (Certified Organic Filet Of Aloe Vera), Glycerin (Vegetable), Hamamelis Virginiana Extract (made from Certified Organic Witch Hazel), Prunus Persica (Peach) Leaf Extract, Actinidia Chinensis (Kiwi) Fruit Extract, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Flower Extract, Passiflora Incarnata (Passionfruit) Fruit Extract, Citrus Tangerina (Tangerine) Extract, Fragrance (Natural Peach), Citrus Grandis (Grapefruit) Seed Extract, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C).”

 My Description & Thoughts about the different witch hazel scents:

I’m always looking for new ways to change up my skin routine for the better. I love trying new skin care products. I had heard of witch hazel before but was unaware of how to use it with my daily regimen Luckily, Thayer’s contacted me about giving their products a try. I love that a lot of the ingredients are organic and all of them are plant-derived and natural. I’ve been genuinely excited about all of the uses I’ve come up with so far–it makes witch hazel a useful, versatile product, as it replaces several bathroom products.

1. Mid-Day Facial Spray

Sometimes after a workout, half way through the day, my skin needs a refresh. I’ve found that what works perfectly for this is a mixture (1 part filtered water and 2 parts Thayer’s Witch Hazel) sprayed onto my skin with a small spray bottle. I dab the excess witch hazel off of my skin with a clean towel. Doing this helps my skin feel fresh without stripping away all of my skin’s moisture. My favorite for this is the lemon witch hazel.

2. Make-Up Brush Cleaner

It makes sense to clean your makeup brushes with a natural, gentle cleaner if you are already making an effort to use natural skin products.  That said, Thayers Witch Hazel makes the perfect brush cleaner. I simply fill a small bowl with witch hazel and place the end of the brushes into the liquid.  I let them sit there for a few minutes, swish them around and then rinse them. Let them air dry before using them again. Pick the witch hazel scent that you like best, as your brushes will not have remnants of that fresh scent. I like using the cucumber for this purpose.

3. Quick “Shower”

Because I am breaking a sweat at least once a day during my workout, I often find the need to clean up but don’t want to take several showers a day. A great solution that has worked well for me is dabbing Thayer’s Witch Hazel on a wet wash cloth. Wipe down at the necessary spots and you’re good to know! It will help eliminate body and odor and will leave a fresh scent behind. My favorite for this is using the peach witch hazel!

*These complimentary products have been generously provided to me for the purpose of trying them in order to write a review on my experience.

If You Do 5 Things for Your Health…

run

It seems to me that many individuals are seeking a healthier lifestyle, but struggle with where to start. Some questions I often hear are: Is it bad that I eat this? What should I start eating? What’s the best work out? 

In my opinion and based upon my own experiences, I believe that there are 5 great places to start. There are no overnight fixes, but if you implement these small changes, then you will be on the road to forming habits that will serve your health, not hinder it.

1. Stop cold-turkey or ween yourself off of soda.

-I understand what it’s like to have a routine with what you drink (I’m a coffee drinker). That said, I also understand that some people fail at quitting soda cold-turkey. Whichever way you choose to stop drinking soda, do it. It’s worth it–and there are plenty of alternative drinks that are chock full of nutrient dense wonderment. Swap the soda for Kombucha, coconut water, or something as simple as adding lemons & limes to your water.

2. Fill your refrigerator with food you would be proud of eating.

-There’s nothing that will enable you to keep making poor food choices more than having that food around you all the time. Shop for good, whole, real food. Think: vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds, plant based milk (coconut or almond milk), free range eggs & grass fed beef. Also, find a non-gmo protein powder that you like and keep that around for a quick protein smoothie. Buy organic when you can.

3. Practice the 90-10 rule.

-Nothing turns me off quicker than hearing about over-obsessed eaters who are on the verge of a full blown mental disorder because of their relationship with food. The point is not to fear food, it’s to focus on good food and eat that the majority of the time. Aim for this: 90% of the time, eat the good stuff–like I listed above. The other 10% of the time, let yourself eat dinner out at your favorite restaurant, or enjoy a glass of wine with your significant other. It’s about balance, not being neurotic about food.

4. Find a fitness routine that you have fun with.

-There’s a great quote for this one; I can’t say it better than Laird does:

“Fitness doesn’t have to be a duty. It doesn’t have to mean charts and graphs and heart rate printouts. It should be a pleasurable part of your life, and it should include things that you do purely because you enjoy them. Fun is an ingredient that people often forget in their fitness program.” -Laird Hamilton (professional surfer and world-class athlete)

I can tell you first hand that I have not been a runner since a young age because it’s a chore that I must do. I run PURELY because of how it makes me feel. I feel happy, relieved, de-stressed, empowered, strong and revitalized every time I run. Nobody else has to understand why you do what you do, or why you run 10 miles a day, or why you spend hours in the gym. The important thing is that YOU are being true to what makes you happy in fitness. So, find a routine that makes your inner light shine and do it daily. Turn on your favorite music, dance a little if you want to, and challenge your body. 🙂

5. Don’t forget to lift weights. (this elaborates on #4)

-I think this one is incredibly important because of my own experience with lifting. So, here’s a story:

I have been an athlete for as long as I can remember, training for various sports. The running aspect of my training was always easy for me–I went out and did it because, at the risk of sounding corny, it fueled my soul.

However, I knew that I “should” be lifting too.

But, I didn’t enjoy it as much. I was so stubborn. I thought, “I like to run, it’s good for me, so that’s what I’m going to do. Screw lifting.” Luckily, with age I’ve become increasingly less stubborn about fitness. I am more open to new things if I believe they will truly benefit me.

About a year ago, I started lifting. I mean, REALLY dedicating myself to lifting–making it a priority. I lift every day now, with a rest day every week or so. Despite being sore and feeling a little weak at first, I almost immediately felt stronger and more powerful. My body started to change, I was becoming a bit leaner.

But, how could I be enjoying this process? I didn’t like lifting. My point in all of this rambling is that sometimes if you step outside of your comfort zone or what you think you’ll have fun doing, you’ll be very pleasantly surprised. You’ll find out that you grow to love it because it is positively impacting your body.

Veronica Malibu Skin Care Review

20131028-134342.jpg

Veronica Malibu Skin Care

(this is a must read for acne sufferers)

Overall Rating: 4 Stars

About Veronica Malibu:

“Veronica Barton-Schwartz is one of the leading experts in skin care in Los Angeles. She incorporates the newest advanced technologies and treatments with a holistic approach to achieving a healthy lifestyle at her Skin and Body Care Center in Malibu, California. At her exclusive seaside retreat, she offers everything from luxurious facials, and body treatments to lasers and injectibles to yoga and private sessions with a Tai Chi Master. Veronica believes that everyone can have healthy, glowing skin if they treat the mind, body and spirit.”

Here is a bit more information about the ingredients that Veronica uses in regard to the word “organic”:

“I do use some organic ingredients, but not all.  I come from a acne background and organic products don’t work on all types of acne.”
detail_4_VER1006-D

Fresh Mint Wash

Veronica Malibu’s Description:

“The Veronica Malibu Mint Wash is a mild pH-balanced facial cleanser recommended for normal to oily and combination skin types. It instantly softens the tap water and dissolves oily and contaminated sebum from the skin’s surface.

  • Beneficial to the skin because of its selective blend of natural botanical extracts
  • Helps control oily skin without over drying
  • Unclogs pores
  • A favorite in Malibu for over 28 years!”

Ingredients:

Aloe Vera Gel, Stearic Acid, Hydrogenated Polyiosbutane, Shea Butter, Dimethicone Copolyol, Thyme Extract, Horsetail Extract, Sage Extract, Cetyl Alcohol, Triethanolamine, , Sodium Trideceth Sulfate, Menthol, Spearmint Oil, Peppermint Oil, Sassafras Oil, Sodium Hyaluronate, Carmine, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate.”

detail_7_VER1009-D

Azulene Cream

Veronica Malibu’s Description:

“Azulene Cream is a lightweight moisturizer to soothe sensitive skin. This cream is ideal for both adults and teenagers. Azulene and other herbal extracts leave a very thin protective layer on the skin which fights bacteria and prevents the formation of inflammation and pimples. A great primer for make-up and a favorite with men because of its lightness and refreshing feeling after shaving. Helps relieve dryness and increases skin’s natural moisture.

It is recommended for combination, and sensitive skin, as part of a highly effective skin care program.

  • Light feel and texture
  • Great for every age
  • A favorite with men and teenagers because of its lightness and refreshing feeling
  • Recommended for combination and sensitive skin
  • Great primer for make-up

Ingredients:

Aloe Vera Gel, Safflower Oil,Steric Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Sodium Alginate, Hops Extract, Rosemary Leaves Extract, Sage Leaves Extract, Hazelnut Oil, Wheat Gern Lil, Phenoxyethanol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Sodium PCA, Triethanolamine, Avocado Oil, Azulene, Vitamin E, Vitamin A, Ascorbyl Palmitate, d-Panthenol, Ginseng Extract, Allantoin, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate, Citric Acid.”

detail_5_VER1007-D-1

Micro-Dermabrasion Treatment

Veronica Malibu’s Description:

“The Veronica Malibu Micro-Dermabrasion Treatment is a resurfacing cream that gently exfoliates the skin to help minimize fine lines, pores and wrinkles. Natural fruit enzymes, vitamins, herbal extracts and marine salts enhance the process by stimulating the production of new and healthy skin cells. The marine salts assist in the reduction of sun damage and scarring. Revives dull skin and smoothes skin’s texture after one treatment.

  • leaves a healthy glow
  • polishes dead skin cells
  • leaves your complexion noticeably brighter and smoother

Ingredients:

Aloe Vera, Hyrogenated Polyisobutane, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Sodium Alginate, Glycerin, Refined Aluminum Oxide, Chamomile, Thyme Leaves Extract, Methylcellose, Safflower Oil, Dimethicone, Micronized Sodium Chloride (Salt), Bromalain Enzymes, Papain Enzymes, Lecithin, Calendula Extract, Rosemary Extract, Vitamin E, Vitamin A, Allantoin, Sodium PCA, Pheonoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate, Sodium Benzoate.”

detail_29_VER1031-D

Clarifying Toner

Veronica Malibu’s Description:

“Helps purify and refine the skin with the soothing blend of eleven herbs that tones the skin without drying it out.

Cleans and calms the skin with the soothing properties of Hyaluronic Acid. This Toner provides blemish control by tightening pores and reducing oil production. Balances natural pH level (pH 5).

Formulated for those with oily to normal skin.

  • Removes makeup and impurites
  • Sulfate and Paraben-free
  • Soothes skin
  • Balances natural pH levels
  • Free of petrochemicals, paragons, sodium laurel sulfates, and perfumes

Witch Hazel – An excellent natural astringent, reduces inflammation, sanitizes the skin and at the same time, helps with hydration of the skin.

Hyaluronic Acid – Pocesses the ability to rata in water, which contributes significantly to maintaining the skin’s youthful appearance and texture.

Ingredients:

Purified Water, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Achillea Millefollum Extract, Symphytum Officinale Leaf Extract, Humulus Lupulus (Hops) Extract, Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail) Extract, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Extract, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Gycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Peel Extract, Arctium Majus Root Extract, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Leaf Extract, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin.”

detail_11_VER1013-D

Blemish Drying Lotion

Veronica Malibu’s Description:

“Blemish Drying Lotion is an effective spot treatment for blemished skin. It helps dry up blemishes, reduces tissue redness, irritation and helps to prevent growth of the blemish. While other acne spot treatments are harsh and can irritate a dry or sensitive skin, this product is safe an effective for all skin types. The combination of ingredients, including Propolis and Tea Tree Oil make this one of Veronica’s top sellers for clear skin. It’s great for acne on the back and chest. The Veronica Blemish Lotion also takes the redness and itch out of mosquito bites!

  • Sulphur clears comedones & inhibits new ones from forming
  • Salicylic Acid encourages the sloughing of dead skin cells
  • Propolis works as a anti-inflammatory
  • Tea Tree Oil fights off bacteria and is a anti-fungal

Ingredients:

Deionized Water, SD Alcohol 40, Horsetail Extract, Sulpfur, Pyroligneous Acid, Glycolic Acid, Salicylic Acid, Lactic Acid, Sodium Borate, Propolis Extract, Retinol. Yeast Extract, Tea Tree Oil and Camphor.”

My Description & Thoughts:

I have really looked forward to writing this post because these products have triggered me to have some pretty profound thoughts (profound for my mind).

Let me just say this. Obviously, I advocate organic skin care products and believe that they are, more often than not, the best route to take when trying to improve the health of skin. The tiny loophole I encountered throughout this entire process is that organic skin care products have not “cured” my acne. Even the priciest, most simple, organic products have not been the “cure-all.”

I believe that is because acne is not only effected by the outside of our body. Acne is a result of what is going on inside of our bodies. Diet, hormone imbalance and digestive issues seem to be common contributing factors to the presence of acne.

I digress a bit, but I wanted to share those thoughts (briefly) because Veronica Malibu products have triggered me to go down a path of truth finding when it comes to acne.

Ingredients aside, I found that using these products together on a daily basis (besides the microdermabrasion, which I used once a week) tackled the inflammation and redness that I was experiencing with my current blemishes. My skin appeared and felt smoother after doing this routine for about 2 weeks. I did find the blemish drying lotion to be unpleasantly fragrant, likely because of its sulfur content. My routine consisted of washing with the mint wash, dabbed the toner onto my entire face (focusing on the “T” zone), applying the Azulene cream all of my face, then applying the blemish drying lotion to problem areas. Each product had a nice consistency and did it’s job well.

But, not all of the ingredients are “perfect” and organic…. That really threw me for a loop. I truly felt torn. I thought, “here are products that are a result of Veronica’s many years in skin care—they are working in minimizing my acne—but they don’t have the cleanest ingredient list.” She does use several organic ingredients, but like I included earlier in this post, Veronica says,

“I do use some organic ingredients, but not all.  I come from a acne background and organic products don’t work on all types of acne.”

This made me scratch my head and really challenged me to have an open mind. 9 times out of 10 I would vehemently refuse to use pharmaceutical products, or products with “active” ingredients. I generally choose to seek the natural route to skin health.
Since I believe part of my acne problem has been a result of years on birth control, I’ve deemed my acne to be primarily caused by a hormonal imbalance. It’s almost like: because a drug could have caused or exasperated my acne, it might take something “stronger” to help break the cycle that my skin is in.
I have felt the need to recognize that pharmaceuticals just might have a place in skin care. I do not think that they truly cure the problem, but they seem that they can be a short term fix. I don’t see them as a great long term fix since they don’t tackle the underlying issue inside of your body.
Essentially, I couldn’t deny that the products were reducing the inflammation on my face, but I concluded that I, myself, would not be likely to establish a long term routine with these products.
If you are searching for a line of products that simply get the job done and are effective in minimizing the appearance of acne, then I would recommend these products. If you scrutinize ingredients lists and are weary about using anything less than completely pure, then I would say find another line of products that suites your requirements.
I had my eye on Veronica Malibu product for a few years and genuinely felt excited to try them. I REALLY wanted to love them in a whole way (effectiveness & ingredients). I do find them effective, and have opened my mind to understand that sometimes acne can be effectively treated by active ingredients that are not necessarily organic.
I hope that this post will help shed a bit more light on acne. I believe that Veronica is top-notch, was a joy to work and communicate with, was incredibly generous, and is extremely passionate about skin care.

*These complimentary products have been generously provided to me for the purpose of trying them in order to write a review on my experience.