Wednesday, October 31, 2007

No 'Poo

I have naturally dry hair. Really dry hair and the single most beneficial thing I have done for my hair's health is giving up shampoo. Yes, I have given up the soapy, lathery, suds that most people think are requisite for clean, beautiful hair. My mom always taught me that my hair wasn't clean until it squeaked. Um sorry mom, but that was terrible advice. If your hair is squeaking it has been stripped of all its beneficial oils. And that is no good. Aside from that, most commercial shampoos contain a whole lot of harsh and or toxic chemicals we would be better off avoiding anyway.

If you need an alternative. Try my favorite, apple cider vinegar. It cleans your hair and it gives fantastic shine. I mix about 1/8 cup ACV with about 1 cup of water in a squeeze bottle in the shower, squirt it all over my hair, let it sit about 5 minutes and rinse. Follow with conditioner and style as usual.

For more details and alternatives read
Why You Should Go No ‘Poo by Christi Colvin.


Sunday, October 28, 2007

...studies have shown that coconut oil actually penetrates the hair to help make it stronger.

Pure virgin coconut oil smells delicious and it might just put you in the mood for a tropical vacation, but one of the best things about it is that it's good for your hair. For the "science" we checked with


...studies have shown that coconut oil actually penetrates the hair to help make it stronger. And as it turns out, olive oil also has penetrating properties. Scientists at the Textile Research (J. Cosmet.Sci 52, 169-184, 2001) tested Olive oil, Avocado oil, Meadowfoam seed oil, Sunflower oil, and Jojoba oil. Their results showed that straight chain glycerides like olive oil easily penetrate into the hair. Polyunsaturated oils , like Jojoba oil, are more open in their structure so they don`t pass through the layers of cuticles very well.

What does that mean in plain English? Olive and Avocado oils penetrate all the way into the hair shaft. Meadowfoam seed oil partially penetrates, and jojoba and sunflower oils don`t penetrate at all. They`re very superficial and don`t really provide any practical benefit. Kind of like Ryan Seacrest.



Coconut oil is Beautiful...

Skin Health and Virgin Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is quite possibly one of the most valuable tools you can possess in your beauty and health arsenal. Coconut oil has stood the test of time across the world as an indispensable component of a healthy lifestyle. You can eat it, put it on your skin, or put it in your hair and you body will thank you for it. To read more



Toxic Beauty


So we already know that it's important to know what we put in our bodies, but most of us don't know it's just as important to know what we are putting on our bodies. Think about it, your skin is your body's largest organ and absorbs whatever you put on it. Toxins on your skin = toxins in your body. A great article by Nicky Pilkington that breaks down the specifics can be found at

Check out this article please. Do it for you and somebody you know.



Saturday, October 27, 2007

Fat for Beauty...

One of the most forgotten elements of a good beauty regimen is one you may not suspect...

fat. That's right, good fats help keep your body healthy and your skin soft, firm and supple.

In his G-living article, Author Brendan Brazier explains that there are many health benefits to be gained from consuming good fats. Brazier states that good fats:

"can strengthen the immune system, enhance brain and nervous system function such as mood, intelligence and behavior, greatly reduce cardiovascular disease, increase energy and performance, grow healthy skin, hair, and nails, regulate body weight, and improve organ and gland function."

These so-called good fats, which can be found in foods like avocados, flax seeds, and raw nuts provide the body with Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids, the
Essential Fatty Acids. Your body cannot produce Essential Fatty Acids. The only way to get them is by eating foods rich in EFA. According to Brazier, Essential Fatty Acids lend:

" support to the healthy function of the cardiovascular, immune, and nervous systems, they also play an integral role in promoting cell health. Repair and regeneration of the cellular membrane is vital for keeping the body biologically young and enabling it to retain mobility and vitality throughout life. Contributing to our cells’ ability to receive nutrition and eliminate waste, EFAs help keep the cellular regeneration process moving. Our body’s ability to fight off infection and reduce inflammation is in part dependent on having an adequate supply of EFAs in the diet. In fact, healthy and efficient brain development in children has been linked to a diet rich in EFAs."

EFA's are also known to help keep the skin soft, supple and young by treating dry skin from the inside out.

Brazier's article also discusses the importance of Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), Medium-chain triglycerides(MCTs), and Antioxidants. GLA's, which can be found in Evening primrose, borage and hemp seed oils boast powerful anti-inflammatory properties. MCT's which are a form of saturated fat, are actually extremely beneficial to your health. The benefits of MCT's, which are found in coconuts and coconut oil have been known for years in other cultures. According to Brazier, MCT's can contribute to, "a healthy metabolism, weight loss and youthful skin."

While many people have heard about the immune boosting properties of antioxidants, they probably never knew that, as Brazier points out, "Plant based oils can also be a great source of antioxidants." and that, "Chlorophyll found in hemp oil has antioxidant like properties..."

So now that you have the basic information, what should you look for? Brazier's article simplifies the answer:

"A good fat should generally come from an organically grown plant based source with minimal processing to preserve their “raw”, nutrient rich state. Look for oils that are cold-pressed and have not undergone a distillation or purification process. Also try to avoid those that are exposed to heat and light as they can result in oxidation."

He lists the following oils as rich sources for good fat:

Hemp seed oil, flax seed oil, antioxidant oil blend (green tea seed oil, pomegranate seed oil, black cumin seed oil, black raspberry seed oil, blueberry seed oil, cranberry seed oil), pumpkin seed oil, coconut oil.

To read Brendan's article in its entirety, please visit:

Friday, October 26, 2007

photo by Jane Hian

The basic building block of beauty is good nutrition. I know you've heard it many times before, but you really are what you eat. Eat brightly colored, live foods rich in vitamins, minerals and enzymes and your body will thank you. According to Doctor Nicholas Perricone author of the Perricone Prescription there are certain superfoods that will enhance your beauty and help you age better.

Acai fruit
This little berry is one of the most nutritious and powerful foods in the world. It can often be found in juice form in health food and gourmet stores.

Anything in the "Allium Family"
Garlic, onions, leeks, scallions, chives and shallots can all help the liver eliminate toxins and carcinogens.

Green Foods
Green foods like wheat and barley grasses can be bought in powder, tablet or juice form, and offer greater levels of nutrients than green leafy vegetables. They also help cholesterol, blood pressure and immune response.

Beans & Lentils
You can reduce cholesterol while beefing up on antioxidants, folic acid and potassium. Try kidney, black, navy, pinto, chickpeas, soybeans, peas and lentils.

Hot Peppers
Both bell and chili peppers contain antioxidants, have twice the Vitamin C as citrus fruit and work as great fat burners.

Nuts & Seeds
You can't go wrong with a handful of nuts a day—walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, macadamia and pistachio nuts contain Omega 3 fats, which are great for your heart. Raw, unsalted nuts and seeds are best.

Numerous varieties of sprouts are great with any meal. They're a great source of protein and Vitamin C. Try adding them to any dish and your immune system will get a boost.

Yogurt and Kefir
These cultured foods contain healthful bacteria that aid immune function, and the calcium helps burn fat. Try using them as a base for a smoothie.

These foods are said to have the following properties,

Prevent or reduce inflammation
Help regulate metabolism and burn body fat
Lower total cholesterol
Lower blood pressure
Help protect against heart disease
Help protect against cancer
Help protect organs from toxins
Promote digestive health