Tag Archives: skin benefits

Quick Tip for Those Using Natural Sunscreens!

I have been loving this sunscreen from Vive Sana (see review for it – here!), but I actually have a special way of applying my natural sunscreens which I thought that maybe not a lot of people thought about and which I think makes using natural sunscreens a hell of a lot easier than straight out of the bottle. Though, if you can manage it and the consistency doesn’t bother you, then that’s cool too.

You see, a big issue a lot of people have with using natural sunscreens is that they often times are extremely thick, leave a white cast, and can be really difficult to spread on the skin so it’s no wonder that many avoid using them.

That being said, using a natural sunscreen is worth it in the long run to avoid unnecessary chemicals, pesticides and preservatives from causing bodily harm so what I do to counter balance the aforementioned problems with using natural sunscreens is I like to mix them with a nickel size amount of serum or natural vegetable oil to help them spread more evenly on the skin, dim the white cast and even last me longer.

Many people don’t know that there are natural vegetable oils that actually offer natural SPF protection. That’s not to say you should replace SPF with a vegetable oil because the protection of natural vegetable oils is too low to offer sufficient protection in such a hot climate, but it certainly does help and works well for spreading my sunscreen out!

Here are some favorites that I like to use either alone or sometimes mixed together:

  • Olive Oil (lower than SPF 4)
  • Jojoba Oil SPF 4
  • Macadamia Oil SPF 6
  • Soybean Oil SPF 10
  • Wheatgerm Oil SPF 15 – 20
  • Red Raspberry Seed Oil SPF 28 – 50
  • Carrot Seed Oil (Essential Oil – this must be mixed with a carrier oil such as soybean or olive – DO NOT USE UNDILUTED!) SPF 38 – 40

I hope these tips help you in your quest to an all natural lifestyle!

Natural Sunscreen That Protects and Improves Your Skin While You Wear It!

I’ve been searching for the perfect natural sunscreen for ages and it’s not as easy as it may seem. Companies boast a “natural” formula that’s usually anything but or it’s natural yet gives me a horrible white cast and a greasy residue of a face when applied. I’m so happy to report I finally found one that ticks off all the right boxes in all the right places!

Vive Sana Solar to Polar Ultra SPF40 Sunscreen is everything I ever I wanted in a natural sunscreen and more:

  • 70% Certified Organic, 100% Natural Ingredients
  • Broad spectrum mineral-based UVA/UVB Protection
  • Phthalate-Free, Paraben-Free, PABA-free, Petroleum-free
  • Sustainable US packaging
  • Healing, Hydrating and Gentle Ingredients that Benefit the Skin

Included in this formula are also a host of natural sun and free radical fighters such as Green Tea and Raspberry seed as well as other more skin calming ingredients like chamomile and oat to soothe the skin. Aside from that, beneficial vegetable oils such as apricot, safflower, jojoba, avocado and olive all work to condition, soften and hydrate the skin and, of course, percentages of 8.5% titanium dioxide and 3.5% zinc oxide help shield the skin from UV damage. Also, it does not include water in the formula so this will last a lot longer for you and your family and is more concentrated than cheaper mainstream sunscreens that are made with water as the main base ingredient.

What I love about this sunscreen is not just that it’s all natural, though that certainly is a huge plus, but I love that it is pretty much skincare built into a high SPF sunscreen. One thing I will say about this that is kind of annoying is the fact that the formula is really thick and it comes in a tube with a small little hole to get the product from, but it’s so thick the product is a pain to squeeze out. Also, it’s pretty thick so I like mixing it with my Alpha-H Liquid Gold Perfecting Daywear, which I use as a primer, in the morning to give it a bit more slip and it spreads super easily that way and leaves no white cast on my face as so many other natural sunscreens have in the past. Also, there’s none of that typical chemical type sunscreen scent which I find repulsive; in fact, there’s hardly any scent at all. I also received a small sample of the Solar to Polar Baby SPF42 Sunscreen which I kept in my purse for re-applying throughout the day and it was actually much smoother to apply than the Ultra, but other than that, they are basically the same.

I highly recommend Vive Sana sunscreens because they are natural, green, and potent for sun protection from UVA and UVB rays. The fact that they include natural ingredients to help protect your skin as well as other skin beneficial ingredients makes this sunscreen that much more awesome!

Also, Storybook Apothecary readers get a special discount if they purchase anything from Vive Sana’s website within the next 2 weeks and use Coupon Code – Storybook20; they will receive a whopping 20% off their order so hurry on down and pick yours up at this great low price!

Check out the Solar to Polar Ultra – here!

Check out the Solar to Polar for Babies – here!

How do you feel about natural sunscreens?

Do you prefer natural or chemical sunscreens to protect your skin from harmful UV damage?

Disclaimer: I was NOT given compensation to write this blog post in any way other than the samples that were sent to me from Vive Sana for review. My opinions, thoughts and experiences with this product are my own.

Guest Post: “Fountain of Youth” by Kirsten @F00dVentures

A few days ago, I posted this post asking anyone if they wanted to do a guest post and Kirsten @F00dVentures sent me an email with an awesome post so without further delay, here it is and I hope you enjoy and check out her blog!

“Fountain of Youth: What I Do to Stay Looking (and Feeling) Young

First of all, I want to thank Tianna for allowing me this opportunity to be a guest blogger. I have had a blast writing posts on my own blog. It’s a bit of a funny story how this came about. I decided I wanted to do a post on the types of foods you should be eating for healthy hair. That same morning (literally as I was typing out that post for my blog), Tianna made a post asking if anyone wanted to be a guest blogger. If I had known that sooner, I would have saved the healthy hair post for her blog. ( Check out that post – here! ) But I think the fountain of youth will make for a fine post as well.

So let’s get to it 🙂

The fountain of youth is not a foreign concept. Everybody wants to not only look young but feel young.  While I can’t say there is really some miracle elixir out there that will suddenly transform you back to the way you used to look when you were in your 20s, there are small things you can do on a daily basis that will make all of the difference in the world as you age.

I think I’ve done a pretty good job so far, implementing these into my daily lifestyle. I take a look at my peers (I am 26) and can’t help but judge them. I remember what these people looked like in high school. Many of them have gained an excessive amount of weight, they have horrible diets, and still carry on as if they are teenagers (smoking and drinking and partying). They look like they are in their 30s instead of their 20s. I know that stressful jobs and lifestyles will take their toll, but there are only a handful of people I went to school with that have aged well (and we’re only in our mid 20s!) If these people look this bad now, just imagine how they are going to look when they are actually in their 30s.

So here are my tips for having that youthful glow:

1)      Protect yourself from the sun. I don’t mean skulk around in your house all day. Wear sunglasses and SPF. Even when it is cloudy out, the rays from the sun will still shine through even if you can’t see them. They can still do damage to your skin and cause wrinkles. So make sure to protect both your skin and your eyes all year round.

2)      Avoid smoking. There is mounting research constantly talking about smoking and the detrimental things it can do to the body. The most recent research is now saying that smoking can age the skin by releasing enzymes that break down collagen and elastin, important components of the body. When this happens, you are more likely to get wrinkles than your non-smoking counterparts.

3)      Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Dry skin is unhappy skin. Dry skin also makes lines and wrinkles more noticeable. Moisturized skin is happy skin. It also gives the appearance of youth. I make sure to moisturize my face and my body every day.

4)      Get enough zzzz’s. Research has shown that a lack of sleep can cause the body to produce excess cortisol, a hormone that breaks down skin cells. In order to counter this, hit the pillow. Sleeping produces human growth hormone (HGH) which helps the skin remain thick, more “elastic” and less likely to wrinkle.

5)      Eat a wide array of fruits and veggies. These foods contain free-radical fighting substances called antioxidants. Free radicals are known to cause all kinds of diseases, including aging. Antioxidants combat free radicals so make sure to eat plenty of them on a daily basis.

6)      Eat lots of fish. Fish, especially salmon, contains essential fatty acid omega 3. One of the things this fatty acid is responsible for is keeping the skin nourished and youthful. The reason it’s called “essential” is because the body cannot make it on its own. So if you want that youthful glow, be sure to include fish into your diet at least 3 times a week.

7)      Don’t overwash your face. Like hair, your face makes its own oils that keep it looking nice and youthful. If you constantly wash your face, then you’re constantly stripping it of these oils.

8)      Avoid excessive alcohol use. I think the number one thing my peers do that makes them age is excessive alcohol use.  Alcohol dehydrates the skin due to its toxin content. These toxins remove moisture from your skin resulting in wrinkles. I’m all for having a good time but I’m a firm believe that a good time can be had w/o alcohol.

9)      Drink lots of water. Your body is made up of water. In addition to its many other functions in the body (transporting nutrients for example), it also hydrates the skin. So drink up that H20.

10)   Be conscious of what you put not only in your body but on your body. This may fall on deaf ears since this is somewhat of a beauty blog. I mean no disrespect when I say this. I love Tianna’s blog and I think she does a great job of using natural products. But one thing I believe that has helped me stay young looking is the lack of makeup I wear. I stopped wearing makeup when I was 19. The main reason was because I worked in a soup restaurant and by noon my makeup was practically melting off my face. It was not very becoming. Another reason was that it was just an added expense. And lastly, I was just sick of constantly having to check myself all day to make sure my makeup looked okay. I definitely have my flaws though. I still break out like a teenager which is annoying. But I feel that piling on makeup is not going to help the problem, I feel letting my skin breathe is going to be a better solution. So my point after all that, is if you are going to wear makeup or put things on your face, at least make it natural. Tianna has done a great job of reviewing natural products and has even sent me a few of them which I am ecstatic to try out. Just like you should be mindful of what you eat, be mindful of what you put on your body.

Hopefully this post will help you all find your own fountain of youth 🙂 “

Thanks again to Kirsten @f00dVentures for doing this awesome guest post!

Please be sure to follow her blog – here!

Happy Friday !

7 Essential Skin Supplements of Youth & Vitality According to “The Water Secret” by Dr. Howard Murad

Happy Friday Everyone!

I’m looking forward to honoring the US soldiers in my life this weekend and BBQ, of course!

(If you’re confused, this weekend is Memorial Day in USA when we honor the past and current military)

If you’ve been following me then you’ll know that I have recently begun reading The Water Secret:The Cellular Breakthrough to Look and Feel 10 Years Younger by Dr. Howard Murad of Murad Skincare (Read my initial article about it here! or check out this awesome smoothie recipe from the book here!). As I’ve been reading along, I’ve been dutifully taking notes for myself and I thought, why not share some of the goods?

That being said, Dr. Murad gives some really helpful and knowledgeable advice on which supplements are the most important in looking and feeling your best. As someone who is pretty vitamin-obsessed, there were 2 that even I have been missing from my diet!

Check out the List:

  • Daily Multivitamin and Mineral Supplement. Dr. Murad advises to select a formula that “includes at the major vitamins, minerals and trace minerals”, but he recommends that those who are postmenopausal opt for iron-free formulas. These are everywhere, but I’d opt for a more natural multivitamin type like these from NOW, New Chapter, or another brand that offers many vitamins from natural sources as opposed to synthetic ones. Vitacost.com has a lot of affordable options.
  • Antioxidant Supplement Formula. These antioxidants are, he says, most important to look for in the formula: Vitamins A, C, & E, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Citrus Bioflavonoids, Green Tea Extract, Grape Seed Extract, Pomegranate Extract, Goji Berry Extract, Poria Cocos, Milk Thistle, N-acetyl cysteine, Rosemary Leaf Extract, Yellow Dock Root, Quercetin, Curcumin AKA Turmeric, Ginkgo Biloba, Selenium, and Coenzyme Q10. He also says not to try and count the milligrams of your intake, but instead to just focus on getting as many of these as possible. As opposed to trying to ingest a million and one pills, I recommend picking one or two of your favorites or otherwise, there are a LOT of antioxidant blends that include many of these in one capsule. Easier to swallow, right? I am NOT a fan of gulping down a crap load of pills. Hints of awful.
  • High Potency B Complex Supplement. He recommends you pick one of these up that includes “all 8 Essential B Vitamins – B1 (Thiamine), B2 (Riboflavin), B3 (Niacin), B5 (Pantothenic Acid), B6 (Pyridoxine), B9 (Folic Acid), B12 (Cyanocobalamin), and B7 (Biotin)”. These are really important for energy. They even have B vitamin complexes that come in chewable form and actually taste okay if you’re not the pill swallowing type, which I’m not. These really help me feel energized in the morning and throughout the day. I find when I pass on taking them on any given day, I feel much more sluggish and slow than I would if I had taken them so they definitely make a huge difference for me!
  • Essential Fatty Acid Supplement. This supplement is important and needs to provide omega-3 fatty acids. He says this may be any any various form: “fish oil, flaxseed oil, or ground flaxseeds added to food or in capsule form.” He says a good vegetarian option is to add a “micro-algae-derived DHA supplement” to their diets. This supplement should involve at least 500mg of Omega-3. In order to get my omegas, I take 2 fish oil capsules daily, but I also eat a lot of fish because I know that when my body gets it from a natural food source, it’s always better absorbed than taking a pill. You can avoid the whole fish taste burping experience, which is totally gross speaking from experience here, by taking them on an empty stomach.
  • Lecithin Supplement (2,000 mg). This supplement is one that I was definitely missing in my diet, but I easily found granules at my local health food store. You can find this in powder, capsule or granular form. He advises that 1 tablespoon daily is enough if you opt for powder or granules. I like to add the granules to my shakes and smoothies; it’s pretty tasteless so it doesn’t bother me. 1 Tbs= 1,725 mg Lecithin.
  • Glucosamine Supplement. Personally, I’d never heard of this supplement before reading this book. I was all, gluco- what? And the kicker is, after reading about it, it’s one of the more important supplements because glucosamine is one of the building blocks that are needed to repair connective tissues throughout your body, that have sustained damage.
  • Calcium Supplement for Bone Health (w/Vitamin D- 1,000-1,500 mg). This is especially important as we currently get way below the needed amount for optimum health. Dr Murad advises to get a calcium supplement with at least 1,000 mg of vitamin D included or otherwise to ingest a separate vitamin D supplement with that amount to get the necessary amount.

Dr. Murad recommends some really great supplements and I have already noticed a big difference in taking them. Other supplements I recommend for those who have specific issues they are concerned with or those in a specific age group that may also have some benefit.

Wild Yam or Evening Primrose. This is beneficial for women who are menopausal or perimenopausal or those suffering from hormonal imbalance. You may also benefit from this if you take it during your time of the month for mood stability or if you get a lot of hormonal acne breakouts.

Licorice Root Extract. I really love this extract. It helped me get over a cough really quickly and especially helps with the throat bronchial irritation that is often felt when you’re sick. When I have a cough, I just add it to my tea with some manuka honey and echicacea; it works really well. Aside from that, licorice root, on general term, is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Inflammation is a big part in the cause of many diseases and illnesses. I really enjoy including this as I feel it tempers any inflammation going on in my system that may be harmful. According to my nursing friend, it’s also beneficial for fighting ulcers!

Disclaimer: Please note that this is for informational purposes only. What has been helpful for me may not necessarily be good for you. Please consult a physician before taking any supplements if you are unsure whether or not they are right for you.

What supplements do you take daily?

Are there any in particular that you have found beneficial?

Remember to sign up for my giveaway – here – a winner will be announced on May 28, 2012! (Memorial Day if you’re in the USA)

Stay Beautiful

&

I’ll Talk To You Soon : ]

Antioxidant Skin Healthy Smoothie

Another healthy smoothie recipe!

I love fruit smoothies, especially now, when I’m fighting off the tail end of a cough/cold variety.

They have great benefits including antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, fiber, probiotics (if you add yogurt!) and plus, they taste delicious!

This one is pretty simple, but packs in a lot of beneficial ingredients for the skin as well as the body health.

Ingredients: 

  • Blueberries (1-2 handfuls)
  • Strawberries (1-2 handfuls)
  • 2 Bananas
  • 2 Tbs. Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Tbs. Goji Berries soaked in 2 tbs. hot water to soften
  • Splash of Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 1/4-1/2 Ice or Water (Ice is more of a frozen smoothie treat while water is more of the Naked Juice type smoothie)

Directions:

All I did was cut up the strawberries and bananas before blending, put everything in the blender, blended until thoroughly mixed and enjoy! That’s it!

Health & Beauty Benefits:

  • Goji Berries – High in minerals, vitamins, carotenoids (beta-carotene), and fatty acids, goji berries can be especially noted for their high content of vitamin C, vitamin B2 (Riboflavin),  Iron, and Selenium. These are best bought organically as conventional types have high instances of pesticide and insecticide residue.
  • Strawberries – An excellent source of vitamin C and flavonoids, strawberries are a great source of vitamins and minerals. Plus, they taste delicious and their vitamin C content helps with dullness in the complexion and acne! Best bought organically due to pesticide residues.
  • Blueberries – A great source of phytochemicals and antioxidants, blueberries are known to reduce the risk of certain cancers and inflammation (which causes many diseases in the first place!). They also contain high levels of resveratrol which is well known in the skin care world for its anti aging benefits.
  • Bananas – A great source of vitamin B6 and soluble fiber, bananas help balance insulin levels (blood sugar) and keep you feeling full. They also have a decent amount of vitamin C, manganese and potassium which are all great for a healthy body and high immunity as well as healthy, clear skin.
  • Plain Greek Yogurt (Fage 2%) – Low in fat and sugar, but high in protein (2X that of regular yogurt), Greek yogurt is great for helping you stay fuller longer because of this high protein content. Aside from that, it also is a good source of calcium and live active cultures which promote healthy gut bacteria for digesting foods in the body.
  • Almond Milk – A great alternative to cow’s milk, almond milk can be bought in store or made easily by soaking almonds in water for 24 hours and then blending them to create a milky consistency. They are a great source of protein, fatty acids, and vitamin E as well as rich in B vitamins, fiber, and phytosterols. They may be helpful in lowering bad cholesterol and risk of certain cancers as well as improving the complexion and may also have an effect on lowering the risk of heart disease. Those will nut allergies should not use almond milk! Please use another variety such as soy, rice or cow’s milk!

This smoothie is great for a lot of reasons, but the main reasons I love it are that it includes  a healthy dose of antioxidants (especially the high content vitamin C from goji berries!) and also includes fiber from the bananas as well as probiotics from the yogurt. The bananas help to cancel out the strange odd flavor of the goji berries which, unfortunately, I don’t much like. This actually tastes a lot like a strawberry banana smoothie with a little something more in the flavor department! It is great for skin, but also great for health and diet. The high amount of vitamins, especially vitamin C, are very beneficial for immunity (fighting off diseases and illnesses), combating skin breakouts as well as skin aging and dullness (glowing complexion anyone?) and for overall health and vitality.

It makes for a great dessert or breakfast or any time snack!

Do you guys enjoy these healthy recipe posts or is there something you would prefer?

Please give me your feedback in the comments below!

Stay Beautiful

&

I’ll Talk To You Soon : ]

My New Dessert Love: Frozen Grapes

So I have recently become obsessed with eating frozen grapes.

And not JUST because I’m on a diet, which I am.

But also because they are SO delicious.

Initially, I thought, “Well, okay, grapes taste okay and freezing them is supposed to be like a treat so I guesssssss I’ll try it.”

Do note the monotony.

And I cannot believe how delicious this simple snack is.

 All I did was put a ziploc of grapes in the freezer for a few hours and voila!

My new favorite snack!

So delicious, low calories, perfect diet food and my new favorite any time of the damn day food.

Yep and it’s not totally unfounded either.

Did you know grapes have a lot of health and beauty benefits as well?

Aside from studies done showing the nutrients in grapes may help to lower blood pressure, it may also aid in the prevention of various cancers, improve cognitive functions, improve cardiovascular health and more!

In terms of beauty benefits, grapes may also help with cell regeneration and turnover, protect from free radical damage and oxidative stress in the body AND skin, and the alpha-hydroxy acids may also help to clear problem skin and prevent wrinkles and fine lines!

A little extra bonus, the malic acid in grapes may also help to whiten teeth by removing surface stain discoloration and preventing other stains from sticking as well.

Just more reasons for me to love them!

How about you guys?

Do you guys love grapes?

Have you ever tried them frozen?

Let me know in the comments!

The foodie in me is dying to discuss this!