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The Controversy on Coconut Oil

The Controversy on Coconut Oil

There is no doubt that when we bring up coconut oil or Cocos Nucifera (these are one and the same) you have some type of gut reaction. Whether good or bad, it seems this nutritionally rich ingredient has become more and more controversial as of late.

Coconut oil, Cocos Nucifera, is made from the white flesh of the coconut's fruit. Made of fatty acids, it helps reduce dryness and allows your skin to retain moisture. It acts as a barrier and protects your skin from environmental toxins. When rubbed onto the skin, it improves its texture leaving it softer due to its extremely high nutrient components. It has a calming effect and diminishes the signs of aging. Full of antioxidants, it boosts your skin to fight external aggressions. 

It is packed with beneficial and healthy ingredients such as lauric acid, which has antimicrobial properties that can help kill bacteria and inflammation. It also has high levels of Linoleic acid, which is an unsaturated omega-6 fatty acids that can be used as an emollient and skin soother. 

People with oily skin may worry about adding more oil onto their skin, but if you use oil-reducing products, the skin will typically overcompensate by producing even more oil. Coconut oil helps rebalance this process and leaves your skin less oily in the long run. Especially when using it as a cleanser. Since coconut oil is comedogenic, as it will not absorb into your skin, being able to wash off the oil will still allow for you to gain the benefits without causing irritation.

The takeaway: Coconut oil gets a bad rep for being comedogenic. If you are acne-prone or on the more lubricated side, consider using coconut oil in products that are not intended to stay on the skin. Think masks, scrubs, and cleansers.

 

Tbg. Skincare

You may notice that the Nov/Dec box highlights some products that feature Coconut oil. When using the scrubs, (in which there is coconut oil) you can feel after your shower a protective smooth layer on your skin. It will protect it for the whole day, keeping moisture inside while protecting the skin from outside aggressions. 

Tip: After using a body scrub with coconut oil in it, follow up with your favorite body oil to lock extra hydration!

Using coconut oil in a scrub allows for you to absorb vital nutrients without the feeling of a heavy oil being on your skin all day, since it will be washed away. This can be a great way to introduce yourself to coconut oil, without the overwhelm of using raw coconut oil. 

 

Using raw coconut oil - 

Now, if you are wanting the extra nutrients or have dry skin that you are trying to combat with the change of season, there are a few ways we love to incorporate coconut oil. 

 

  1. Make-up remover - Utilize coconut oil as part of your double cleansing routine. You would use the coconut oil first to initially take your makeup off and then rinse and follow up with your cleanser of choice, making sure to diligently remove any remaining coconut oil. One of our most coveted items featured in The Skincare Box to date is Fresh, a cleanser by Skin Essence Organics, that is coconut oil based. Even though the box was a year ago, we still get consistent emails from customers raving about the benefits its had on their skin. 
  2. Use as a Body Moisturizer - Coconut oil improves the skin barrier due to its high levels of unsaturated fats. Use the oil on dry areas such as elbows, knees, and feet. 
  3. Lips - Because lips don’t have sebaceous glands, they are missing in the natural protection sebum would generally otherwise provide. Coconut oil can help lock in moisture and keep your lips supple and moist, especially in the winter!
  4. Hair - Coconut oil can be beneficial as a deep-conditioning treatment. Simply add the oil to your hair for 20-30 minutes and then remove it when washing your hair 

 

What are your favorite uses for coconut oil? Let us know in the comments!

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The Method: TBG

The Method: TBG

See New x TBG is unlike any other collaboration we’ve done before. As the months turn colder, another way to add hydration and nutrition to challenged winter skin is to incorporate exfoliation into your routine. We love the ritual of masking/scrubs as it embodies true self care and forces us to take a break from constantly “doing.” Beauty begins when we flood our bodies, both inside and out, with nutrient dense ingredients from plants, minerals and the hive. Between the cold air outside and dry indoor heating, your skin cells dehydrate and die out faster in winter. Exfoliation helps replenish the skin. Here’s how to incorporate See New x TBG into your winter skincare regimen. 

 

EARTH

What you’ll need:

-Earth

-Drybrush

 

The Method: 

This routine is routed in ancient and modern remedies. You’ll start with the dry brush before you get in the shower. Dry brushing is a fantastic, low maintenance ritual that detoxifies your skin by increasing blood circulation and promoting lymph flow/drainage. The basic principle is to brush from your extremities towards your heart, which is ultimately where lymph fluid goes. Make sure that you are dry brushing before getting into the shower. Drybrushing is a ritual I’m started to include about 3x a week, and have loved the feel of it. The effects it has on my skin are swoon worthy, but also leaving my body feeling energized if done in the morning. 

After showering, apply desired amount of Earth to damp skin in circular motions. (I would recommend staying in the shower while doing this ritual). Allow the nutrients to penetrate your skin. Rinse off, and follow with your favorite body oil. Proceed with this ritual a few times a week. 

 

SUNRAY

What you’ll need: 

-Sunray

 

The Method: 

Google searches for hair growth remedies are at an average of over 820,000 times per month, with a significant increase in 2021. Hair loss is tough, I’ve experienced it! 

We’ve relied on the expertise of Caroline Denis, founder of TBG for how to combat this stress related topic. Burdock extract is the star of the show in this brilliant formula. Burdock root oil contains Vitamin A, which can help nourish the scalp and strengthen hair. It also contains all the necessary amino acids for building protein that create hair. 

To help strengthen your hair, leave Sunray on as an overnight treatment. Apply the serum on your scalp and massage it with your fingers. Let it sit all night. Proceed with this ritual the night before washing your hair. This is a wonderful treatment for all hair types. 

Tip: To protect your hair from pollution and outside aggressions, gently apply a few drops of Sunray on the ends of your hair after washing.

 

SEA

What you’ll need: 

-Sea

-Water 

-Your favorite facial oil 

 

The Method:

This mask is undoubtedly one of my favorites, it’s what got me so intrigued with TBG Skincare. A beautiful blend of superfoods including spirulina, vitamin e, and honey create a smooth combination to reveal rejuvenated, and even skin. This lush, jar of green goodness frees you of the day’s pollutants, infusing your skin with nutrients as it plumps, softens, and revives circulatory rhythm to restore optimal hydration and luminance. Caroline recommends mixing a teaspoon of the mask with 5 drops of water in a bowl until obtaining a thick liquid mixture. Apply to clean skin with a brush. Let it work its magic for 5 to 20 minutes. Gently massage under warm water to rinse off the mask. 

Customizable tip: Add 5 drops of your favorite facial oil into the mixture. This is my favorite way to use this mask!

 

LAVA

What you’ll need:

-Lava

-Water

 

The Method:

The Lava mask is skin food. Beautiful for even the most sensitive skin, this brilliant formula is designed to be non-stripping, respecting and preserving your delicate acid mantle and pH levels. A blend of nature’s gifts, including cacao, turmeric, honey, and French green clay will leave your skin feeling oh so fresh with every use. Turmeric is known for for it’s anti-inflammatory components, which gives it the pedestal is truly deserves. Turmeric has been included in beauty rituals for centuries. For application, we recommend adding a couple drops of water to Lava, to help even spread thoroughly. This is wonderful for those of us who live in a colder climate. If you are in a warmer climate, you can spread a small amount directly onto your face, no water necessary. Adding a bit of water tends to help the spread of a product in case it gets “stuck” together. This doesn’t change the outcome of the mask. Let it work its magic for 5 to 20 minutes. Gently massage under warm water to rinse off the mask. 

 

GOLD

What you’ll need: 

-Gold

-Cleansing Oil (optional)

 

The Method: 

Golden Morning. The words that come to mind when I use this combo in the AM. 

As most of you know, I love using a Cleansing Oil in the AM. Cleansing in the morning is a must for me. It allows my skin to hold onto moisture better, and allows for other products to have better absorption. When I wear makeup, it applies much better.

1-2x a week, I will switch up my AM cleansing routine by incorporating Gold Face Scrub. Here’s my how to - apply 3 pumps of Cleansing Oil (I’m usually reaching for Dirty Lamb Cleansing Oil), and mix in a dime sized amount of the Gold Scrub. These two together create quite a power couple. Gently massage using circular motions. Rinse with warm water. 

Why it works - Being an ideal humectant for a long-lasting hydration, TBG’s honey enables your skin to preserve its natural oils. The ingredients in the Cleansing Oil mirrors a similar effect. I find the consistency of these two together works miraculously. Bio-individuality is key here. 

Using Gold in my PM routine - The ingredients in Gold are incredibly calming. After cleansing, Caroline recommends applying a grape-sized amount of the Gold Scrub to your damp skin and gently massage using circular motions. Rinse off with warm water, and follow with facial oil or moisturizer. 

 

Haven't gotten ahold of the limited SEE NEW x TBG box? Don't miss out before it's too late! Linked here. 

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Winter Skin Elixir

Winter Skin Elixir

The best advice I ever got was - what grows in season together, usually compliments well in a dish. That’s where the inspiration for this recipe came from. Seasonal fruits and veggies are the best way to fuel your body with fresh nutrients and enzymes. I love summer produce, don’t get me wrong. But there’s something something about the rich, antioxidant filled winter produce, that I crave. 

 

The Recipe:

  • 1 frozen Banana (this adjusts the creaminess)
  • 1/2 red Beet
  • 1 cup Grapes, red
  • 1 Pomegranate (seeds only)
  • 1 cup milk of choice
  • 1 Square Non|Verbal Chocolate (optional)
  • 2 tsp Cacao powder, raw
  • 1 tsp Coconut oil

 

The Method:

Blend all the ingredients except the dark chocolate until creamy. Pour into a glass, garnish with the chocolate, and drink immediately.

 

 

The Benefits:

Pomegranate: One of my favorite superfoods. They’re yummy but packed with a variety of nutrients. Its benefits go beyond just skin, but also positively impacting mind, body, and overall health. 

Red Grapes: Organic grapes contain antioxidants that are wonderful for the cardiovascular system. They also contain polyphenols and that are known for reducing inflammation. 

Non|verbal Chocolate: If you haven’t heard of Non|Verbal, it’s my pleasure to introduce you. Adaptogenic chocolate starting with organic, fair-trade cacao, infused with Chinese and Ayurvedic herbs. Bobby & Deniz go above & beyond in their harvesting methods and we are lucky to carry them at See New! Each bar has an impressive ingredient list, of 3,000 MG of skin loving herbs. Definitely check them out!

Coconut Oil: Virgin coconut oil contains high amounts of nutrients such as Vitamin E and bioactive compounds such as polyphenols. A great quality fat, fats are essential for optimal skin health. 



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Transitioning to a winter skincare regimen.

Transitioning to a winter skincare regimen.

It’s no secret that your summer skincare routine will differ from your routine during the colder months. When you think of your skin in the winter - you want protection. Think deep hydration, rejuvenation, and rich creams. 

In the summer, these will often feel too heavy for your skin, no matter your skin type. Focus on these in the winter. 

 

Cleanser - For the colder months, your skin will appreciate a balm or oil cleanser. Both are great options for all skin types. If you’re on the more lubricated side, don’t be intimidated by cleansing oils! 

The oil content attracts the oil and debris sitting on your skin similar to a magnet, so they can be an effective way to lift away and dissolve stubborn makeup or sunscreen or anything else sitting on top of your face.

Noncomedogenic, light botanical oils like jojoba, hazelnut, sweet almond, apricot kernel, and hemp oils are the best options for oily skin types.

Exfoliation - Exfoliation is key, year round. As dry, dead skin cells build up on the top layer of skin, a sort of barrier develops, preventing the proper absorption of any hydrating and moisturizing products you apply. Untreated, it will lead to a cycle of drier and drier skin further irritated by the continuous buildup of dead skin cells, resulting in clogged pores and breakouts. Bottom line - exfoliation helps replenish the skin. Follow with your favorite body oil/facial oil afterwards!

We love the UMM Body Scrub as its base is brown sugar, known for its hydrating properties for the skin. 

Hydration - Hydration, Rejuvenation, and Nourishing are words to look for when shopping for your winter skincare regimen. Facial oils are going to be your best friend when it comes to targeting your skin in the colder months. It’s important to know your skin type when choosing a facial oil. 

Pro tip: Choose facial oils based on your skin type. Use serums to treat a skin condition. If you aren’t sure about which one, we linked a blog post HERE that breaks it down in a really helpful way!

Have any specific questions about your winter skincare regimen? Drop a comment below!

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Why we created a subscription.

Why we created a subscription.

Hi guys! Bryn & Austin here. Let’s talk subscriptions.

Our idea behind See New was to see yourself in a new way through the use of skincare. No more covering up flaws or shying away from your true self, we want to accentuate natural beauty and empower you.... we want you to See New if you will. 

Now, as we looked at the skincare industry and the subscription industry, we wanted to make some key changes so that we could truly empower the user but also empower the incredible brands we work with and continue to feature in the box! Let's discuss below

1. Sample sizes. This was a huge one for us, there is no way you can tell how a product works for your skin type, using a tester size. See New is a skincare service to help you discover new products that you love, and will use beyond that! A tester simply doesn’t do the job. This bring us to our next point...

2. Bi-monthly. Again, it is difficult to see how a product will preform for your skin within a month, not to mention product overload. Your self-care journey is on your schedule and we want to make sure you aren't rushed!

3. Brand focused. This is broken down into two parts, the first one being focused completely on the brand. We want you to be fully IMMERSED in the brand you are discovering! No distractions. We love small business and want to give a platform to artisan brands that deserve it!

The second part is something we typically don’t talk about, but the marketing that we do for our brands, is unmatched to say the least. We leave every brand we work with, visuals for their own marketing, a guide on how to elevate their brand marketing, and so much more. We love the brands that we work with, and without them, we aren’t us.

The goal is to make sure all parties are left feeling EMPOWERED.

4. Flexibility. The most frustrating part of having a subscription is not knowing when it will process, or having difficulty of canceling/pausing. Trust us, we know this well (we’re looking at you Amazon Audible cancellation policy lol).

We want our incredible customer base to be able to subscribe to See New, and have the ease of knowing that you can cancel when you need to, you can pause it when they need to, or even switch between membership options. We want it to be easy and all about you.... it's your discovery after all! 

5. Options. The Essentials is one of our favorite ideas we launched this year. The idea behind it was for the minimalist, and heavily inspired by Austin’s skincare routine. Also perfect for those who still want to get the box while avoiding product overload.

Millions of products get thrown out every year due to expiration, not being used, etc. We do not want to contribute to product waste, therefor the Essentials was born.

6. Product made for you. We feel like this is not talked about enough. The amount of subscription boxes that make money from selling brands’ expired/out of season products are through the ROOF! We would never, and we will never.

Each brand that we work with, goes into production about 2-3 months before the partnership, to ensure peak potency and freshness. For example, our Nov/Dec brand just finished production and are in the midst of packing everything to ship to us! Quality over everything. 

7. Pricing. We will always have the best price on the market. Pinky promise. 

 

We took some of your most asked questions from our IG story and wanted to answer them here for you - 

Q: What is your favorite subscription other than your own?

A: We do love Winc, we paused our subscription as we’re doing 70 hard but we’re big fans of the wine subscriptions out there.

Our other favorite subscription is the Superhuman app, so not totally sure if that counts or not. It’s a meditation app and they have everything from cooking meditations, to walking meditations. It’s been a real game changer, we use it everyday. 

 

Q: What have been some of your favorite discoveries from your box?

A: We try to not pick favorites but these are all products that are often in rotation in our bathroom: Honua Mahealani Glow Balm, Skin Essence Facial in a Jar, Skin Essence Rosehip Seed Oil, Rain Organica Light Mist, Aster Raine Reverse Serum, Forest Rhapsody Barrier Warrior, Dirty Lamb Cleansing Oil, and Dirty Lamb Lip Scrub. 

 

Q: What’s next for See New?

A: We would love to do a pop up in 2022 and meet some of you! We also want to expand our online store with the brands that we feature. We’re really proud of who we work with, and want to continue giving that opportunity to emerging brands.

 

We can’t wait for you to See New. We love hearing from you! Send us a dm or email if you have any questions or just want to chat with us!

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Inner Beauty - EAT PRETTY

Inner Beauty - EAT PRETTY

How we fuel our bodies is reflective of how we care for them. Foods play a crucial role in your overall health, optimal skin health, and mood.
We should note that we don’t follow any specific “diet” per say. We opt for foods that are rich, nutrient dense, and leave us feeling GOOD.


Peaches & Bee Pollen
1 peach, halved.
Drizzle of honey
2 TBSP Bee Pollen
2 tsp Cinnamon

The Method:
Drizzle honey overtop halved peaches. Top with equal amounts of Bee Pollen & Cinnamon. Grab a fork and enjoy!

The Benefits: This recipe is too easy for how good it is.
Did you know this stone fruit is a skin savior when it comes to inflammation? Its macronutrients also help in diminishing fine lines. In addition to their anti-inflammatory antioxidants, peaches have beta carotene and vitamin C to support healthy skin. 
Bee pollen boasts an impressive nutritional profile.




Season Harvest Bowl
Farro
1 cup farro
4 cups water
Olive oil
2 cloves garlic
Chili flakes
1 Bay Leaf

The Bowl
3 Carrots (left whole)
1 Golden Beet (sliced)
3 Broccolini (left whole)
Handful of Olives (use whatever kind you have in your fridge!)
1/2 Cucumber
1/2 Avocado
Olive oil
1 TBSP Pesto
Chili flakes
Paprika
Salt
Pepper

The Method:
Put a nice glug of oil into a large skillet that has a lid and heat over medium heat. Add smashed garlic and chili flakes and cook slowly to toast garlic so it's beginning to get soft, fragrant, and nicely golden brown, about 3 minutes.
Add farro and cook over medium heat, stirring more or less constantly so grains toast evenly, for 3 to 5 minutes. They will darken slightly and become quite fragrant.
Add water, bay leaf, and salt and bring to a boil. Cover, adjust heat to a nice simmer, and cook until farro is tender but not so much that it has "exploded" and popped fully open--it will be mushy if cooked that long. Depending on your farro, this could take 15 to 30 minutes or even a bit longer.
Drain farro well.

While the farro is cooking, preheat the oven to 400. Add carrots, beet, and broccolini to a sheet pan. Drizzle with avocado oil, and salt & pepper. Bake until lightly browned - about 15-20 min.


In a separate bowl, mix cucumber with olive oil and pesto. Season with paprika, salt, and pepper.
Plate as seen in photo. Add farro to bowl, add in carrots, beets, and broccolini. Add cucumbers. Top with avocado, and olives. Season with paprika, salt, and pepper. This recipe is a wonderful template and can change as the seasons do. Enjoy!


The Benefits:
If it’s food related, you will always hear us mention healthy fats! Our skin is made up of fat and protein. It’s no secret our body needs both of these for optimal (skin) health.
Golden Beet: Beets are a unique source of phytonutrients called betalains. Betalains have powerful antioxidants and inflammatory properties. They’re a wonderful source of vitamins and nutrients.
Olives: Olives are renowned for their good fat content. They contain monounsaturated fat, the same good fat you find in nuts and avocados.
Avocado: Another one of our favorites when it comes to fats.


Firecracker Salmon
1 lb Salmon
2 tbsp Soy Sauce
2 cloves Garlic
1/2 Lemon juice
2 tsp Manuka Honey
Salt & Pepper


The Method:
Add Salmon with all ingredients to marinate for at least 30 min before preparing.
When ready, add the butter as the pan is heating up. Since salmon can vary in size, thickness, and even fat content, it’s best to use an instant read thermometer and cook to an internal temperature of 145˚F. 

The Benefits:
Salmon: Salmon is a wonderful source of omega 3 fatty acids. Salmon is also rich in Vitamin A, which is an immune-boosting nutrient.
Vitamin A is arguably the most important “anti-aging” fat soluble vitamin for your skin.
Your Epidermis (outer layer of skin) and Dermis (beneath the Epidermis), are controlled by your bodies levels of Vitamin A.
When your body has a good amount of Vitamin A, it will noticeably become soft & firm. The genes that make collagen, need Vitamin A. Vitamin A triggers the production of collagen.
The lesson? Throw away your collagen peptides and grab some salmon instead!

We're so excited for you to try these recipes, let us know what you think in the comments! :) 

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Our Dirty Lamb Routine: Founder Edition

Our Dirty Lamb Routine: Founder Edition

See New was built by two young creatives who are veterans to this industry. See New began out of love for small business, and seeing the best version of yourself. In this blog post, we go over how we incorporate Dirty Lamb into our everyday routine! 

Bryn's routine -

I’m so excited to share with you how I incorporate See New x Dirty Lamb into my everyday routine. First things first, bio-individuality. There are so many “guides” out there that tell you what to do, and what not to do with skincare. A lot of them contradict each other so it’s no wonder why people get so confused when it comes to taking care of their skin! I think there are wonderful “templates” you can follow when doing skincare, but don’t be afraid to experiment. 


Let’s get into it! The Apricot Cleansing Oil. I LOVE a good cleansing oil, especially in the morning. Using cleansing oils leaves my skin with a supple glow and allows my skin to hold onto moisture better. Creating a clean canvas so that my other products can have better absorption, is something I will always practice and preach. When I cleanse at night, I typically use this cleansing oil as my second cleanse. My first cleanse is to loosen up makeup and take it off - I don’t want to use my expensive cleansing oil to do so. You’ll typically see me switch between oils, balm, and gels for cleansers. 


I’m always trying new serums and oils but having a couple staples in my routine is essential for me. I use the Ultra Day serum every other day, and it leaves a flawless dewy look without being “greasy”.  A must have on my checklist when it comes to facial oils. No one wants to go out looking like a grease monkey!


Since first trying this lip scrub from Dirty Lamb early this year, it’s been a staple in my bathroom. Lips are such a focal point on your face, we can’t forget about them! Living in Seattle for part of the year, I definitely struggle with chapped lips. I always carry a DL lip scrub with me on the go, as well as having one in my bathroom. One of my favorite things I “ditched” during quarantine was lipstick. I’ve really loved showing a natural pout and DL lip scrub is perfect for it. After using the lip scrub, I typically find myself reaching for Ipsum’s Lip Oil Balm. These have been my skin saviors as we turn towards the colder months. 


No matter what serum I use in the morning, I love reaching for my Rose Petal toner from DL afterwards. If you follow my personal IG, you’ll see that I’ve gone through quite a few of these bottles this year lol! The scent is so refreshing, yet not overwhelming. I’m someone who definitely reaches for a mist throughout the day - I love my skin feeling oh-so fresh! Hydrating mists are one of those products that can really be used however you want, whenever you want. There’s so many “right” and “wrong” ways to do skincare according to every expert but the beauty is in creativity (with some exceptions). My skin really started to change when I embraced that. Bio-individuality is important. My skin leans more dry so my skin absolutely soaks up products like Rose Petal!


I had to save my favorite for last. The Dirty Lamb night serum was one of our customer’s favorite products in our first See New x Dirty Lamb box. After a long day, my skin craves this formula. Their blend of fatty oils is an experience your face won’t forget. I love mixing this oil with Aster Raine Reverse Serum or Rejuvenating Cream - (I’m loving skincare cocktails lately) for an extra layer of hydration of protection. My skin absolutely loves these combos. If I’m not using a body specific oil, I’ll put this all over my chest and sometimes even midsection. The rest of our body needs love too.

 

Austin - 

The Essentials was born earlier this year, drawing inspiration from how I personally use the box. It's perfect for the skincare minimalist.

Things can get quite busy between See New and my other job, so the minimalism of the essentials is perfect for me. When I wake up, I always shower and I’ll typically apply the Apricot Cleansing Oil afterwards. I don’t spend a ton of time on skincare in the morning if I’m honest, but I absolutely love having a clean face! 

From there I use the Day Serum, which I have been loving and I go about my day. I apply it to my face and neck. 

The night is when I really take some more time to get my skin into a great place before bed. I’m very specific about my nightly routine as I think it’s so crucial to always end the day positively and carry that into the next day. 

I’ll take a few minutes to cleanse each night. I love the scent and the way the oil cleanser makes my skin feel after use. I’ve been loving the lip scrub a lot especially for this time of year. With the seasons changing in Denver my skin tends to get dry and my lips always feel it a lot! The scrub has been amazing for me and really kept my lips feeling great without chapping. 

Last but not least I end the day with the Day serum. I love that it's non-greasy, and I find it mixes quite well with some of my other favorite products. I still have some of my Barrier Warrior left from this past month, so I have been mixing the two products together. Using 3-4 drops of the serum and 3-4 drops of the Barrier Warrior. I use this everywhere! If you're a guy I think this helps a ton with ingrown hairs on your neck.

 

I hope this post was insightful to see how each of use the See New curations! If you have any questions or want to learn how to tailor a product to work better for your skin type, leave us a comment and we'll get back to you asap!

-Bryn & Austin

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Jade rollers - and why you don't need one.

Jade rollers - and why you don't need one.

This blog will cover why you don’t need jade rollers, and what will work for you even better (and it’s free!)

Can I be honest? Every time I see a well respected company or influencer rave about the benefits of jade rollers, I just….cringe inside.

The jade roller trend is one I don’t think I’ll understand. I remember purchasing one back in 2018 and thinking “this is what people are excited about?” My little $28 facial roller squeaking at me while dragging it over my skin. LOL.

A majority of the companies that sell jade rollers, are very, very cheaply made. However it should be noted, that traditional jade rollers are wonderful and luxurious. They have been apart of ancient Chinese rituals for centuries. The jade roller is believed to be invented during the Qing Dynasty. They were used by the elite to keep the skin young. Keep in mind the quality of authentic jade is highly sought after. Natural, undyed or untreated jade would be in the thousands of dollars," says Richard Berberian, the owner of Elyse Fine Jewelers-Gemologist in Reading, Massachusetts.

On top of cheap material, they contain intensely chemically treated crystal that have to carry tags such as ‘reconstituted’ to avoid claims of false advertising. They retain none of the original properties of the crystal, which is supposed to be one of the crucial benefits of this ancient ritual. Nearly all jade rollers that you find at your favorite fashion retailer or online beauty store, are produced in the same 3 factories in China.

A quick search on AliExpress.com will show you what most retailers pay for a “jade” roller. Even less for bulk orders.

While they do add a pretty “flare’ to your vanity, save your $40 and freeze a spoon instead. 

 

A LESSON IN LYMPHATICS

Here’s how I explained jade rollers vs lymphatic massages to one of my friends. Have you ever had a kale salad after it’s been massaged? Yes you heard me right. Massaged. Kale. If you haven’t, probably sounds incredibly weird but massaging it breaks down the tough cell structure of the popular veggie and has a noticeable difference in texture and taste. Facial massaging, in my opinion is similar. While rolling around a mini paint roller on your face can feel good, it really doesn’t do much. But getting your hands in there and really massaging, game changer. Weird analogy? Sorry I just really like massaged kale. ANYWAYS...

 

I was introduced to lymphatic drainage techniques a couple years ago from blogger, Lauryn Evarts. After undergoing major jaw surgery which leads to intense swelling, this was her go-to. After doing my own research on lymphatics, I found a couple different teachers who had wonderfully made videos on the subject. I was hooked. The history of the method begins in 1932 with Emil and Estrid Vodder who practiced as a massage therapist and naturopath in France.

What it is, and why it works:

The lymphatic drainage massage is a technique that uses light pressure and specific motions to gently drain excess fluid.

 

The lymphatic system removes toxins and metabolic waste from cells all over the body, carrying these substances away in lymphatic fluid (lymph). When lymph circulation is overwhelmed, lymph fluid can build up. This shows up in the face as swelling and puffiness, and even bags under the eyes (Hello hungover skin).

Lymphatic facial massages help increase circulation to help bring fresh blood and new nutrients to the skin cells. Your lymphatic system doesn’t have a central pump to move it like the way the heart pumps your cardiovascular system. Instead, lymph relies on small, smooth muscle contractions.

Lymphatic massage benefits go beyond bouncy skin. They include aiding in detoxification, strengthening the immune system, reduction of inflammation and increased vitality. Shall we go on?

Explaining how to massage your face via a blog post won’t do the magical ritual justice. Visuals are necessary. I HIGHLY suggest following along this video tonight (with your favorite facial oil/serum). It’s free, it’s easy, and it feels so good. You will notice a difference afterwards.

WATCH THE VIDEO HERE

Plus can we talk about how good her skin looks? That’s all the proof I need.

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Skincare for the soul.

Skincare for the soul.

SKINCARE FOR THE SOUL

We’ve put together some of our favorite ways to connect with ourselves. Each person is different, this blog is really aimed at mindfulness. Take what you need, and get creative with it!

“Sometimes wellness means creating a life you don’t have to escape from with “self care” ...and sometimes it’s still a hot bath scrolling through instagram.”


A good night of sleep

Think of sleep as the cherry on top of what you think is a well-balanced lifestyle. Without it, there will always feel like something is missing. For adults, getting 7+ hours of beauty rest is essential for optimal health. Getting your Z’s can: lower inflammation, reduce depression, build a stronger immune system, improve concentration, and lower risk of heart disease. Shall we continue?

Here’s one of our “hacks” for a night of quality sleep. 

  • Cut the caffeine! Our favorite elixir to drink before bed. 
    • Rooibos tea 
    • Manuka Honey
    • CBD (We like Two Cranes, they’re a local brand for us!) No affiliation.
    • Couple drops of Valerian root extract


Lowering your stress

There are truly endless reasons to the benefits that lowering stress has on your health, we’ll talk about 2 main ones today.

  • Stress directly affects your cortisol levels. Cortisol is linked to immunity, and how your body reacts to toxins. In the time we are in, it has never been so important to manage stress levels! Turn off the news, make your favorite drink and get in the bathtub! 
  • Stress is one of the largest contributors to acne flare-ups, rosacea, and other skin conditions. Controlling stress, or knowing how to deal with it will be one of the most beneficial things in the long run for your overall health, and happy skin!

See our elixir above! We love Rooibos tea because it is a powerhouse when it comes to stress! It supports the adrenal function by balancing cortisol, one of the stress hormones. 


Meditation 

The transformative potential of meditation shouldn’t be underestimated. Meditation falls under the “lowering your stress” category for us, but thought it should have it’s own spotlight too. Meditation is an umbrella term for the many ways to a relaxed state of being. The best thing about meditation is that there is no “right” way of doing it! From guided meditations to yoga, the options are endless. 

Meditating is one of the best things you can do to help reduce stress. Scientific evidence supports this claim: extensive studies were conducted on a group of Buddhist monks as they were meditating. The prefrontal cortex of the monks’ brains (the part associated with happiness) was found to be extra active.



Pimp out your bath

Hot baths are relaxing and stimulating, cool baths can reduce inflammation. I can definitely attest to this! Two weeks ago I had a very alarming trip to the ER, later finding out it was Sciatica. “Is this what 23 feels like?” I humorously thought to myself. Switching between hot and cold baths throughout the week - I noticed that it had a significant impact on muscle and joint tension. Here's what I used:

  • CBD Bath Bomb (side note: the founder of Alki Body will be doing a story takeover on our IG today so stay tuned for that!) We’ve also linked a blog from the founder HERE to learn more info about how CBD positively affects your body. A highly recommended and quick read. 
  • Add a couple drops of our favorite body oil to a hot bath!
  • Digital Detox

Oh, and turn on our Selfcare Playlist for the ultimate date night in.

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Summer Skin Menu

Summer Skin Menu

We like our food, like our skincare - nourishing, rich, and makes you feel like the best version of yourself.

Taking care of your skin from within is just as important as taking off your makeup before bed. This menu is inspired by the fresh, raw produce that summer so graciously gifts us. 

 

Foods your skin loves:
High quality proteins!
Healthy beneficial fats
Antioxidant-rich veggies/fruits
Herbs + spices

 

Okay first things first, coffee.

I know asking to take coffee off the menu is a non negotiable for most. So let’s ADD to it instead of taking away!

BEAUTY LATTE: 

The Ingredients:

-2 shots espresso

-Your choice of milk (I love making this!) 

-1/2 tsp pearl 

-1 tbsp Rosewater

1/2 tsp coconut oil 

-1/2 tsp chaga

Drizzle of Manuka honey 

 

The Method: Use a hand blender to mix ingredients together. Serve over ice! If you are missing any of the items, don’t fret. This recipe is just as good with a couple of the ingredients or all of them! The idea is to add benefits to something you already do. 

 

Next up: Breakfast!

A tartine is truly my go-to. It is so EASY. My first job ever was this cute farm-to-table restaurant & this was their specialty - but in 20 different flavors. 

The beauty of this recipe is you can truly use whatever is in season. If it grows well together - it tastes good together. During the summer I always have tomatoes, strawberries, & feta on hand. During the colder months, I’ll often find this variation on my plate with beets & fennel. 

FARMERS MARKET TARTINE 

The Ingredients:

-A good sourdough bread

-Feta or goat cheese are my favorites (I use feta in this one)

-Tomatoes

-Radishes

-Microgreens

-Mint

-Serrano Chile pepper 

-Olive oil + salt & pepper

 

The Method: Slice bread, top with feta cheese. Slice tomatoes & radishes, add on top of cheese. Top with olive oil. Next, mix microgreens with olive oil & salt + pepper, massage with your hands. Top your tartine with mint, pepper, & microgreens. Indulge!

 

My favorite menu item...

This has to be one of my new favorites, it's just too easy & good to be true. I can’t take credit for this recipe, it’s from Half Baked Harvest so I’ll link it here! This is what you'll need for the recipe.

PEACHES & PROSCIUTTO

The Ingredients:

-Fresh peaches

-Prosciutto 

-Goat cheese

-Lemon

-Heavy cream

-Honey

-Thyme

-Olive oil + salt & pepper

 

The Method: Linked here!

 

The Dinner Menu...

 A wonderful source of protein, salmon is also one of the best sources of vitamin B12. We love eating fish during the summer with a sexy summer side salad. Easy & fresh. 

Make your salmon as desired. We typically opt for pan searing out of convenience. Linking a good recipe for this.

The Salad

The Ingredients:

-Olives

-Red Onion

-Cucumbers

-Tomatoes (cubed)

-Feta

-Olive oil + salt & pepper

 

The Method: Prepare salmon as desired. Toss an even amount of the salad ingredients together in a large bowl. Top with olive oil + salt & pepper. 

 

We didn't forget...Snacks!

Your popcorn just got an upgrade. 

BRYN'S POPCORN

The Ingredients:

-Popcorn

-Olive oil

-2 tbsp Cumin

- 2 tbsp Chili Powder

- 1 tbsp Paprika

The Method: Make popcorn, drizzle with olive oil. Mix spices in & enjoy!

 

Did you try our Summer Skin Menu? Let us know!

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Your Forest Rhapsody Box (rituals/tips)

Your Forest Rhapsody Box (rituals/tips)

 

DEW DROPS

Dew Drops is a dual-action cleanser that nourishes and feeds your skin as you cleanse. 

The Ritual 

 Massage a generous portion on dry face and neck, moving in a circular motion to dissolve makeup and daily grime. Remove with a warm, wet face cloth, or if you desire, emulsify with a few drops of warm water and rinse off. This is a great cleanser for your 1st or 2nd cleanse, or both! Cleansing helps create a clean canvas to allow other products to penetrate for effectively.

Tips

-As you cleanse with Dew Drops, work in a brief and gentle lymphatic facial massage to aid blood circulation. This is a wonderful step to use in the mornings as well, to de-puff any sign of a late night. 

-During the warmer times of the year, CJ recommends starting the day with a cleanse, following with Green Nectar + SPF.

 

GREEN NECTAR
A versatile hydrator, designed for any season. 

The Ritual 

Apply 1-2 pumps on slightly damp skin. Massage with fingertips or press gently, until it is fully absorbed. Works harmoniously with other mists, serums or moisturizers, so feel free to layer on as you desire.

Tips 

-Add a few drops of your favorite facial oil to 1-2 pumps of Green Nectar and massage this mixture onto your skin. This hydrating serum is a superior delivery system, sending the oil into your skin where it is most needed. 

-If you have oily skin, try using a mist - Green Nectar - mist combo. Alternatively, you can also tweak the Green Nectar/facial oil ratio for your skin’s needs.

-As you work in Green Nectar into your skincare routine tonight, pamper your hands with an extra pump of this silky formula, to make sure your hands stay hydrated with all that extra hand washing!

 

GOOD EARTH
A rich, restorative mask that can be used weekly for optimal skin health. A stroll through the forest in a jar, if you will.

The Ritual 

Spread a thin layer on clean, dry skin. Leave on for 10-15 minutes to allow the bioactives to feed and nourish your skin, before rinsing off with warm water. Use 1-2 times a week depending on your skin’s needs. 

Tips 

-Good Earth works wonders as a spot treatment. Dab on troubled spots and leave on for a few hours or even overnight if your skin can handle it – this potent formula draws out impurities while kick-starting the healing process.

-This mask is wonderful for everyone. This mask is also a great option for people with dry/sensitive skin. Good Earth contains a blend of antioxidants + skin loving superfoods that will nourish & heal. 

 

BARRIER WARRIOR 
A sophisticated formula designed to hydrate, moisturize, & protect.

The Ritual

Apply a pea sized amount of Barrier Warrior to the whole face, and massage gently with finger tips until it is completely absorbed. Depending on your skin’s needs, Barrier Warrior can be used on its own, or with other mists, serums and oils for an additional dose of hydration.

Tips 

-Barrier Warrior is the perfect lightweight moisturizer for both day and night. 

-For skin in need of a real boost of hydration and nutrients, layer on a generous amount and Barrier Warrior will function gorgeously as a sleeping mask.

-Mix 2 drops of Green Nectar + 2 drops of Barrier Warrior for the ultimate hydration + protection.  

-No essential oils are used in this formula, but you will get a whiff of a light, green top note, derived from cucumber extract. A beautiful ingredient with soothing properties.

 

THOUSAND PETALS
A gentle yet effective resurfacing mask - a regal treat for your skin.

The Ritual 

Spread a liberal amount on clean, dry skin. Leave on for 10-15 minutes to activate the flower acids and fruit acids. As you rinse off with warm water, massage subtly to polish away dead skin cells. Use 1-2 times a week depending on your skin’s needs. Easily sensitized skin might experience a slight tingle. 

Tips 

-On days your skin feels congested, use Thousand Petals as a quick mini treatment. Apply a thin layer and massage gently for 10-20 seconds, before rinsing it clean.

-In drier months, Thousand Petals is a wonderful option to encourage skin cells regeneration.

-A great intro to acids if you are not familiar. Thousand Petals uses pyruvic acid, a great acid for sensitive skin. Pyruvic acid has been known for its healing properties with acne, hyperpigmentation, & greasy skin. 

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How to use products you don't LOVE.

How to use products you don't LOVE.

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