The no ‘poo revolution – how to have happy hair!

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happy hair

I’d first heard about NOT using shampoo many many years ago, after I’d heard Jerry Hall (model, Mick Jagger’s ex wife) didn’t shampoo her hair. She was a MODEL, she had trademark long luscious locks, she was a rockstar’s wife! This was no smelly hippy. But back then I didn’t have the guts to even try it. Fast forward 15+ years and I finally *met someone who had the guts! Her name is Lucy and she’s just written a book about it!

Having frizzy and wavy hair I avoid washing my hair too often because it takes so darn long to dry and style, but the longest I can go without washing it is about four days – and that’s at a stretch. By then the front of my hair (especially if I have a fringe) is covered in grease and my roots are the same – however the ends remain dry (this is how I get to four days without washing – I wear a hat to cover the greasy roots while the dry ends give the appearance of clean hair!).

So what is this book all about?

Basically, giving up shampoo. I know, I know, it’s a shocking thought – like giving up soap? But Lucy explains WHY and HOW in the most hilarious and clever way. There’s science, there’s research, there’s experience, there’s testimonials. By the end of reading this perfectly sized e-book you’ll be convinced to give it a go. Best of all, the e-book only costs £2.20! I mean it probably costs you more to shampoo your hair!

Lucy Lulastic and the Hippyshake

You can read all about why Lucy gave up shampoo on her blog Lulastic and the Hippyshake

But why?

Toxins, health related issues, time, cost – there are actually many good reasons to give up shampoo (which Lucy explains in her book), for me it’s the idea that I won’t be so desperately in need of washing my hair every few days. With two young kids washing my hair (let alone drying it) is quite indulgent. Also, I’m frightened by the amount of toxins I put on my body and the fact that my scalp seems horribly dry.

Mostly though, it just makes sense. My eldest son is just over two and I think I’ve washed his hair twice in his whole life – yet he has the most gorgeous, shiny, healthy looking hair.

Now Lucy will take great pleasure in finding out that when her new book made it to the Australian press just recently, my partner sent me a link to the online article saying “maybe you should try this”. Ha! I had already planned to darling, but thanks for the beauty tip!

So, I’m on the mission to go ‘poo free. I’d already planned to chop off my long locks for more easy styling, so a new washing routine seems like good timing! My dear partner, the no fuss bloke he is, is pretty stoked actually. He’s the one who has to babysit the kids while I ‘deal’ with my difficult hair!

You can buy “Happy Hair: The Definitive Guide To Giving Up Shampoohere.

*Whilst I have never met Lucy in person, we are what I will call “internet pals” – we found each other by mutual admiration!

Choose to be happy

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kikki k happiness book

My friend The Wellness Mummy recently wrote a blog post about the benefits of keeping a gratitude journal. I couldn’t have agreed with her more, it’s such an awesome thing to do as part of your bedtime routine – to sit and think about all the good things that happened that day so you can write down what you’re grateful for. I’ve been keeping a gratitude journal for over a year now. I actually found a five year journal where each date (i.e. 18th of March) has five entries for five years of thoughts. I’ve now crossed over into my second year and reading what I was grateful for a year ago really puts it into perspective! A year ago I was thankful for my toddler sleeping better and here I am with a newborn!

The point of this post however is to let fellow readers know of an awesome little thing I spotted at Kikki.K today – the Happiness Journal, which I believe ties in with Gretchen Ruben’s “The Happiness Project“. Along with other gratitude style journals, the Happiness Journal focuses more on, well, keeping you happy! Kikki.K are actually running in-store workshops on how to use the Happiness Journal. How great is that? It would be such a fun project to do with a friend or take a ‘not so happy’ friend along to. I had a browse through the book and it uses each month to focus on things you’re going to do or change to make yourself happy.

If you don’t think you need to work on your happiness as such, keeping a daily gratitude journal is another awesome way to leave the day on a good note. This is the five year journal I used, but there are a few more out there!

five year journal

I love all the projects becoming dedicated to happiness. Personally, I am a big believer that we can choose to be happy. It’s the ‘glass half full’ idea. It’s not just me that thinks it – apparently it’s a scientific fact – read this article about it!

So what are you grateful or happy about today?

 

Why I choose organic and natural makeup

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Previously: I discussed my experiences with exposures to toxins and how I now live my life as organic, natural and toxic free as possible. 

Ladies, have you ever thought about what you put on your face every day in the name of beauty?

I used to wear the top name brands which gave me a flawless look, which was certainly achieved, to the point that it was very difficult to wash the makeup off my face and then off of my washcloth. It wasn’t until I discovered that some pretty modern looking organic and natural makeup existed (not the ‘hippy’ stuff which you know wouldn’t last an hour) – these products boasted things like “no talc, no alcohol, no synthetic perfumes, no parabens, no petrochemicals, no artificial colours or synthetic fragrances, no nanos, made from organic ingredients and is not tested on animals”. Everything else in my life was becoming organic and toxic free so why not makeup!?

My first organic and natural makeup experience by BKind Beauty Bar

My first organic and natural makeup experience was having my makeup professionally done at BKind Beauty Bar for my birthday party last year. BKind is an organic beauty store which is a mecca for all the great organic and natural skincare products. Even better, BKind like to focus on local or Australian made. The results were beautiful and flawless. I was fortunate enough to get a gift voucher for the store from my friends, so I left with all the basics to start my organic and chemical free makeup endeavour.

My new makeup lasted all night, it stood up to all the top name makeup brands and it was only when I went to wash my face at the end of the night that I really saw the difference: the makeup came off with ease. There were no harsh chemicals gluing the makeup to my face (well except for the fake eyelashes I was wearing!).

Later that week (now solely using my new products) I noticed something else – the bathroom sink wasn’t so dirty. My partner often complained about the state of our sink – my old makeup would basically stick to the bowl and turn it grotty and dirty quite quickly, but the new products weren’t leaving a trace! I was sold – I would only be putting organic and toxic free makeup on my face from now on and slowly I have added to my makeup collection.

You might say I was too easily sold. But I already understood how the body absorbs through the skin – which includes makeup and skincare. I already understood why you don’t want to put toxic chemicals on your skin. The only thing I needed to realise was that just because it’s a top name brand, doesn’t mean it’s good for you – I put makeup on my face without even thinking about what ingredients were in the product or what it was doing to my skin or health. Most women do. But it’s time to start reading the label on everything you buy.

Now don’t be fooled by some mainstream cosmetic lines claiming to contain ‘organic’ or ‘natural’ ingredients when really only one or two ingredients are these things and the rest are toxic. You want an ‘all natural’ or ‘all organic’ product, and you want to look for products that don’t have the following nasties:

What to avoid: Parabens, petrochemicals, phthalates, thimerosal (mercury), synthetic colours, synthetic perfumes, diaszolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, diethanolamine (DEA), & triethanolamine (TEA).

What you won’t find in organic and natural makeup are harmful or even carcinogenic chemicals. A closer look at the ingredients in the mainstream brands will show links to cancer, allergies, dermatological issues, organ failure, birth defects and more. Think about lipstick for example, this is something that you unintentionally end up swallowing in use, and most mainstream lipsticks contain toxic ingredients! (click here for more information).

My tried and tested favourite organic & natural brands

MORGAN ANNIE

Uses 100% natural and true minerals, so by nature it becomes a silk-like powder that is deflected from the skin rather than absorbed by it. They are also anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial, non-comedgenic (doesn’t clog pores) and water resistant. Also 100% Nano free, no synthetic chemicals, irritants, talc, clays or FD+C Dyes and NO Bismuth oxychloride.

After 15 years in the hair and makeup industry, Western Australian founder Kylie Apostoles wanted to make all natural products.

INIKA 

100% natural beauty brand incorporating mineral makeup, vegan and organic products that are completely free from synthetic chemicals and harmful ingredients.

Miranda Bond found that after detoxifying her life, her problems with endometriosis (which can make pregnancy difficult) seemed to clear up and she fell pregnant three months into her dextoxifying regime. She then decided to create her own natural and organic makeup range.

ZUII ORGANIC

100% Australian owned certified organic products are based on “certified organic flower petals” essential oils, plant extracts, vitamins and minerals. They have no talc, no synthetics, no petro chemicals, no parabens, no genetically modified ingredients, no animal testing and preservative free.

With a huge focus on sustainability and sourcing Australian grown certified organic materials, their motto speaks for itself “love, nature and organics”.

ELUSYION 

Elusyion is created without the use of chemical ingredients such as talc, alcohol, perfumes, parabens, petrochemicals, artificial colours or synthetic fragrances and is not tested on animals.

Boasting their certified organic, vegan cruelty free, and Australian made and owned the added bonus is that they’re manufactured in Western Australia!

ERE PEREZ 

The Ere Perez line offers natural, mineral and organic makeup as well as vegan cosmetics and makeup. They are Australian owned.

With a family history in natural therapy, Mexican born Era Perez had all the support and knowledge to create a natural makeup range.

DR HAUSCHKA   

Dr Hauschka has impressive history. Established in 1967 after Elizabeth Sigmund corresponded with Rudolf Hauschka about her ideas for plant-based skincare. With Dr Hauschka’s background in biodynamics and holistic pharmaceuticals, they developed holistic skin care preparations using 100% natural skin care products. Today, with their ecologically sound methods of growing and sourcing ingredients, their one-of-a-kind manufacturing processes, and international fair trade initiatives – Dr Hauschka is an impressive brand.

Check out their 7 Facts that Will Change Your Skin for an interesting read!

Just some of my organic and natural makeup collection

I currently use:

Some of my makeup tips:

Primer – I’ve found that, like some mainstream cosmetics, but especially natural cosmetics, a primer is essential to ensure the makeup does not crease or smudge during the day, particularly if you are using eye liner (or something heavy).

Eyeliner – If, like me, you use a cream eyeliner (which is a pot of black cream applied with a separate thin pointy brush), a great way to hold the colour is to go over it with a black eyeshadow (using a small chiselled brush).

Lips – Condition your lips with a thick lip balm (or a lip primer) before applying lipstick, particularly darker colours. This ensures the lipstick doesn’t seep into any cracks and maintains a stronger edge line.

End of day – Always wash your makeup off at the end of the day. I’ve previously discussed my natural face cleansing routine here.

I would love to hear if anyone knows of any great products I haven’t mentioned, or their experiences with organic and natural makeup. Finding a convenient stockist is the hardest part, but there are some great online stores too.

If you need more convincing, I dare you to research every ingredient on your makeup container. If your makeup doesn’t come with an ingredient list – I wouldn’t dare use it!

My local fair trade, recycled and organic shop

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I love my neighbourhood. Victoria Park is an old suburb in Perth with a pretty good sense of community. It started becoming even greater with the addition of an awesome cafe with great coffee, a book store, even a place to buy healthy smoothies and gluten free food – slowly but surely it’s getting everything I need so that soon I’ll never have to leave the neighbourhood! I even have my doctor, dentist and hairdresser here. But I feel like the icing on the cake was when I discovered U-Chus Fair Trade, Recycled and Organic Shop.

I am so embarrassed to admit that I didn’t know I had a fair trade store right near my house – walking distance in fact. It was only recently that I noticed it and have been trying desperately to visit the store since!

I met Glennys, the owner, when I arrived. Straight away you can tell that Glennys is really passionate and hands on about what she does. Both herself and her husband try to source great fair trade products from around the world – even visiting the countries themselves!

Glennys told me that U-Chus started as a party plan business where she would bring the products to your home for you to ‘shop’ with a bunch of friends. What a great idea for pre-Christmas! AND she still does it!

As she explains on the website; by purchasing from the U-Chus exclusive range of products at either the shop in East Victoria Park, online or through a party plan, they guarantee:

  • Excellent quality, unique designs and affordable prices
  • A fair price is paid to producers
  • No child labour, sweatshops or any other forms of exploitation in the production process
  • Long-term economic security for producers through regular trading with the same groups
  • Wherever possible organic, sustainable, or recycled materials are used to reduce any negative impacts on the environment.
And let’s not forget, supporting a local business is great too.

I’m so proud to get familiar and support all the businesses in my neighbourhood and to see some really great people trying to make a difference in the world. You should check out your closest fair trade, recycled or organic store. It’s great to know where you can shop for a great gift, something unique, but most of all something ethical!

My plastic fantastic bag

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I found the amazing Bags Revolt  stall at the last Made on the Left Market and instantly fell in love with this bag (which I subsequently bought).

I love the colours. I love the size. I love the fact that it’s made from old plastic bags!

Talk about an upcycling hero!

Venezuelan born artist Patricia Acuña has only lived in Perth since February last year and we’re sadly losing her to the East Coast soon! According to her blog, Patricia decided to weave her own bags after moving to Perth and subsequently took sewing and weaving lessons, but it was her decision to use old plastic bags that really make her products special.

It is clear from the business card/product tag that came with the bag and also from her website, that Patricia supports a sustainable world and has chosen to use plastic for weaving in order to create awareness of the environmental problems plastic bags and other household ‘junk’ is causing.

“The problem I have set out to tackle is the plastic phenomenon. The alchemy of transforming common “trash” into gold. It is a mix of innovation and tradition, as the plastic bags get woven and sewn into a common objects, Art or Any-Thing Beautiful!”

Although her products may not be readily available for much longer, her blog has some great information about plastic problems and how she is creatively trying to not only create awareness, but upcycle the ‘junk’ into something brand new and beautiful!

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Review : MooGoo Face Cleansing Oil aka “the best cleanser”

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My skin story

I have been on the search for a good cleanser for years. I’ve used all products, cheap to expensive all claiming to do simple to complicated things but I was constantly changing the products in the search for a solution for my skin problems such as dryness and oiliness at the same time (no seriously!) and a bad acne stage. It wasn’t until a few years ago when I started focusing on products with more natural ingredients, did I start seeing some more positive results.

Now I know everyone’s skin is different so I’m sure there are people out there who have an awesome adaptable skin type which means they can use the harsh cheap stuff – but not me.

If you’re curious what skin type you are I thoroughly recommend The Skin Type Solution by Dr Leslie Baumann. I read the book years ago to discover my skin type however I’m pleased to discover Dr Baumann has now made this information free online. This helps you to find out the ideal beauty regime and products for your skin type. For example, I discovered I should never use gel or foaming cleansers, which made a huge difference once I stopped using them.

So – back to the point at hand – In the last few years I have been looking for ‘the perfect cleanser’, focusing mainly on natural products. After spending a fortune on some very fancy, organic products I was still not happy with the results (or at least, I was getting fairly neutral results for such an expensive product). I was also now starting to become concerned about the amount of complicated (and scary sounding) ingredients I was still finding in these seemingly ‘organic’ products.

My biggest challenge had become my night time cleaning routine because I had to remove makeup from the dayand clean my face. My routine at the time was using strong makeup removers to get rid of heavy eye makeup, then cleansing my face with cream cleansers, which I would then often do twice to get the job done properly and even then my face never felt clean and I often got blemishes.

Then one day about two months ago, while casually wandering around the Fremantle Markets, I stumbled across MooGoo.

Finding MooGoo

I’ll admit, it was the packaging that got my attention: a stainless steel bottle, cardboard coloured label and a picture of a cow. Then when I read the words “oil cleansing method” I was intrigued. I checked the label for ingredients, and was curious to discover the only ingredients were essential oils. Oils? To clean? I was at a point where I had to try something different, so I bought it.

MooGoo started when a dairy farmer adapted an ‘udder cream’ (used to keep cows teats in good condition) on a family member for their skin problems. MooGoo is now renowned as a product for people suffering from sensitive skin and skin conditions such as eczema & psoriasis. Some Australian doctors even endorse MooGoo to cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

The company MooGoo are also a reputable sustainable company for the following reasons:

  • They are Australian owned, and use Australian products
  • They only source their natural oils from sustainable farms
  • They are certified carbon neutral
  • They use recyclable packaging
  • They use natural cleansers (which break down to their natural components quickly in the water system)

Whilst MooGoo are not pioneers in this ‘cow teat solution turned human beauty product’ industry (Udderly Smooth have been operating in the USA for over thirty years), they do have the added advantage of being a more sustainable company. I recently ‘liked’ them on Facebook and love seeing their regular updates on product testing, asking users their opinions, and explaining more about their products.

The Cleansing Oil

There are two instructions for the cleansing oil – everyday washing and deep cleansing. The daily washing was simply to massage the oil into the face, shower, then rinse it off at the end. I was more interested in the night cleansing method though, so I thought I’d give that a go.

The instructions for deep cleansing are “massage the oil onto the face. Apply a warm wash cloth over the face to steam open the pores and allow the cleansing oils to sterilize the pores. Wash off with cold water and apply a moisturiser as normal

Or, more specifically, this the way I did it:

  • Tie your hair back (you don’t want oil in your hair!)
  • Completely wet a washcloth (flannel) and squeeze out excess water. Fold it twice into a square.
  • Dispense the oil onto your fingers (about half a teaspoon size) and rub into face
  • Now take the washcloth and put it in the microwave* for between 20 to 30 seconds (depending on your microwave)
  • While the microwave is heating the washcloth, massage the oil into the face. If you have heavy eye makeup on rub your eyes to release all the makeup.
  • Remove the washcloth from the microwave carefully (until you know the right timing, be careful not to burn yourself) and first rub away any heavy makeup with the corners of the washcloth (i.e. eye makeup)
  • Now place the washcloth over your face and let it sit there for a while, the steam will open your pores
  • Wipe the oil off using the washcloth, then rinse your face quickly with cold water
  • Apply moisturiser

*using the microwave is better than wasting water in order to get the right temperature, or waiting for a kettle to boil

According to MooGoo, the formula is made with ‘drawing’ oils (to draw dirt out of the pores) and moisturising oils (to keep the skin moist), with anti-oxidants and anti-ageing properties. There is also a selection of different formulas for different skin types.

Two months on, I am still convinced that this is the best cleanser I’ve ever tried. They tick all the boxes for me: simple, sustainable and it works. I am so impressed that I am going to stop looking for a new cleanser, and focus instead on trying other products in the MooGoo range.