Elegantly Eco

Eco-Friendly Beauty, Fashion, Reviews, and Info


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Spa Review: Pure + Simple, Super Hydrating Facial

As most of you know, I love shopping local and one of my favourite places to buy my skincare is Pure + Simple. Not only do they have their own lines of amazing skincare (see my reviews on Holistic Vanity and Pure + Simple products) but they also carry cosmetics and other skincare lines. The newly revamped Yorkville spa location has miles of shelf space which allows them to also carry some haircare products which aren’t available at the other locations. The Yorkville location also has a Wellness Centre with services that the other locations don’t have. For example there is naturopathic medicine, acupuncture, cosmetic acupuncture, massage therapy and nutrition sessions available at this lovely location on the upper floors.

After my review of the Holistic Vanity Acne Care Line I was offered the chance to visit the Yorkville location and experience one of their new facials. I had the lovely Isabella for my Super Hydrating Facial and I loved every minute of it! Isabella did all of the traditional facial steps. She first removed all of my makeup, then examined my skin and proceeded with the steaming, facial mask, extractions and massages. I also got to have the high frequency treatment and oxygen sprayed on my face to help my skin absorb the products being slathered on my skin. I have to say, Isabella has very talented hands. She was both gentle and firm depending on what my skin needed. We had an interesting chat during my facial. I love talking to estheticians! We traded skincare and makeup tips, tricks and routines. Isabella, I’m trying your eyebrow tips and loving them so far! At the end of my treatment Isabella asked me if I had any questions. I bought some of the items she suggested for my dehydrated skin and I’ve been using them with great results. I’ll be reviewing those products in a future post. I left the spa with a very oily face but totally relaxed and mellow. I will definitely be booking my next facial at the Pure + Simple Yorkville location with Isabella.

Rating: 5/5

Thanks again to Pure + Simple for the facial. To learn more about Pure + Simple check out a list of their locations. You can also follow them on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest!

At the front of the spa they have their cosmetics section. This is a natural makeup wonderland I’d like to play in the next time I get a chance!

Just to give you an idea of how much shelf space they have, after the cosmetics section are these long rows of shelves to the back of the store. And behind the receiving desk near the waiting area is another set of shelves.

Here’s a shot of their haircare selection. Intelligent Nutrients, John Masters, Rahua and InnerSense are among the lines they carry. I went a little crazy buying some of the hair products!

The waiting area on the first floor.

One of the cozy and relaxing treatment rooms.

Yorkville room

Have you ever had a facial at Pure + Simple? You may also like my review to the Aquabrasion facial, also at Pure + Simple.


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DIY Toothpaste

DIY Toothpaste

I’ve started DIYing things that I use very often. One of those is toothpaste. I ‘ve tried and liked Earthpaste so I thought why not make my own version? It would be a lot cheaper than buying it all the time. I found this recipe from Overthrow Martha and modified to my needs. For those living in an old house or a house with small pipes you may want to decrease the amount of bentonite clay and increase the baking soda. I’ve had reports that bentonite clay can clog pipes but I personally have never had a problem with the clay. I have omitted the salt from this recipe because I find the baking soda salty enough. Although dead sea salt is supposedly good for teeth because of its mineral content.

Ingredients:

1.5 tbsp Bentonite Clay
2 tbsp Distilled water or aloe Vera juice
1 tbsp coconut oil
5 to 10 drops of essential oil like peppermint, wintergreen mint, clove, holy basil,rosemary, sage (optional)
A container (mason jar or a squeeze bottle)

Options: If you get clogged pipes from the bentonite clay you can use this ratio below and keep the rest of the ingredients the same.
1 tbsp baking soda & 1 tsp bentonite clay

Instructions:

Put the clay, coconut oil, and baking soda (if using) in a bowl and blend with water. Add the essential oils you like. Clove is good for getting rid of strong flavours like garlic breath. Keeps for several months in a container.

Using this toothpaste along with oil pulling helped me decrease the amount of plaque on my teeth. At least that’s what my dentist told me. I didn’t tell her that I was making my own toothpaste and oil pulling however. I’ve found some conventional dentists can be opposed to ideas like that.


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Intelligent Nutrients, Styling Gel and Curly Hair Serum

Intelligent Nutrients, Styling Gel

Ingredients: Aloe barbadensis leaf juice, 1 alcohol denat.,1,3 glycerin,1 acacia senegal gum,1 inulin,1 agave americana leaf extract,1 xanthan gum,1 citrus medica limonum (lemon) peel oil,1 ethyl palmate,1 nigella sativa (black cumin) seed oil,1,2 cucurbita pepo (pumpkin) seed oil,1,2 rubus idaeus (red raspberry) seed oil,1,2 vitis vinifera (red grape) seed oil,1,2 vaccinium macrocarpon (cranberry) seed oil,1,2 mentha viridis (spearmint) leaf oil,1 cinnamomum camphora (ravintsara) leaf oil,1 rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) leaf oil,1 menthol,1 elettaria cardamomum seed oil,1 cinnamomum zeylanicum (cinnamon) bark oil,1 vanilla planifolia fruit (natural flavor),1 rubus idaeus (red raspberry natural flavor type), 1 chamomilla recutita (matricaria) flower oil,1 citrus aurantifolia (lime) oil,1 citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) fruit oil, 1 limonene,1,4 linalool,1,4 citric acid, tocopherol (vitamin e) 1 certified organic, 2 antioxidant intellimune® seed oil complex, 3 denatured using certified organic bergamot essential oil 4 naturally occurring component of organic essential oil blend

Ingredients wise, this gel has much of the same ingredients as the curly hair serum below. That’s not too surprising. I do like the certifications this product has: certified organic, leaping bunny, and green e org certified (renewable energy). The gel has a very mild, almost spearmint-like smell to it. The hold is medium to firm. A little bit goes a long way so if you like a light hold, use this sparingly. I did like this gel but it’s a bit pricey so I’m going to keep looking for another styling gel. I wish they had larger sizes of this gel available to make it more affordable. This gel works to tame my frizzy hair as well and I found it easier to control the type of hold I wanted with this product than the curly hair serum. It also doesn’t weigh my hair down nor leave too much product build up over time. I found I had to wash my hair more often with the curly hair serum.

Cost: $38.99 CAD, 200 ml / 7 oz
Available at: ThairIntelligent Nutrients Canada
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 4/5

IN-curly hair serum

Intelligent Nutrients, Curly Hair Serum

Ingredients: Aqua (water), glycerin,1 galactoarabinan, cetearyl alcohol, alcohol,1 sucrose,2 cetearyl olivate, sorbitan olivate, diheptyl succinate, glyceryl stearat SE, pullulan, xanthan gum, aloe barbadensis leaf juice powder,2 nigella sativa (black cumin) seed oil,2,3 cucurbita pepo (pumpkin) seed oil,2,3 vitis vinifera (grape) seed oil,2,3 vaccinium macrocarpon (cranberry) seed oil,2,3 rubus idaeus (raspberry) seed oil,2,3 euterpe oleracea (acai) fruit oil,2 aroma,2,4 lecithin,2 cathamus tinctorius (safflower) seed oil,2 cetearyl glucoside, sorbitol, trehalose, acaia senegal gum, capryloyl glycerin/sebacic acid copolymer, brassica alcohol, brassicyl isoleucinate esylate, glucanotactone, potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate, limonene,5 linalool,5 geraniol,5 citronellol,5 citral,5 tocopherol (vitamin e) 1 made using organic ingredients 2 certified organic 3 antioxidant intellimune® super seed oil complex 4 certified organic active aroma/flavor oils citrus noblis (mandarin orange) peel oil, pelargonium graveolens(geranium) flower oil, litsea cubeba (may chang) fruit oil, pogostemon cablin (patchouli) oil, citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot) fruit oil, jasminum officinale (jasmine) oil, vetiveria zizianoides (vetiver) root oil, honey natural flavor type 5 naturally occurring component of essential oil blend

Let’s talk ingredients first. There are some natural emollient (diheptyl succinate), emulsifying (glyceryl sterate SE) and surfactants (xanthan gum) in this serum. Then there are the anti-oxidant ingredients (pumpkin, cranberry and raspberry seed oils) two of these oils are anti-inflammatory as well. Then there are the oils used for scent (mandarin, geranium, may chang, patchouli, bergamot, jasmine and vetiver). I normally don’t like the scent of vetiver but in this styling product the concentration is so small it’s quite hard to detect. Despite all the essential oils used in this product I found that the scent wasn’t overpowering. Once my hair was dry only a faint scent lingered and this dissipates throughout the day. Those with sensitive noses won’t need to be nervous using this product. As for the frizzies, this curly hair serum did work to keep them at bay. But I found the hold too firm for me. I couldn’t get the right amount in my hair. I was either putting too much or too little. So I’ve started adding this to my leave-in to dilute it enough so that my hair doesn’t get frizzy but also isn’t too crunchy. Like their styling gel I find this a bit pricey so I’m unsure if I will repurchase this. I will have to do some more experimentation with this product.

Cost: $35.99 CAD, 140 ml / 5 oz
Available at: ThairIntelligent Nutrients Canada
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 4/5

Have you tried any Intelligent Nutrient products?


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Spotlight on: Beekeeper’s Naturals


Note: Logo images are from the Beekeeper’s Naturals website.

This past March I attended the Yoga Conference with a friend and encountered Carly Stein of Beekeeper’s Naturals there. I got to sample the Throat Relief Spray and then purchased one to try. I’m loving it and if you’ve read the review from yesterday you’ll know that I’ve already repurchased three more bottles. Carly and I had a fascinating conversation about yoga, bees and reiki. I asked if Carly if she would allow me to interview her for my blog and she very graciously agreed. Here is the interview below. I hope you enjoy it!

081014_2303_SpotlightEr11.jpg   How did you first get involved with bees?

BKN Logo (new)   A few years ago, I was studying abroad in Italy and came down with a bout of tonsillitis. I was desperately looking for something to help and was stumbled across an Italian pharmacy, which introduced me to the wonders of propolis. Propolis helped me make a full recovery and avoid surgery. After this experience, I was eager to learn more about this seemingly magical product, which brought me to the door of a local beekeeper. After my first experience with the hives, I was hooked!

081014_2303_SpotlightEr11.jpg Did you ever think you would become a beekeeper?

BKN Logo (new)  Honestly, no. I did not know very much about the bees and was misinformed about their role. I saw them more as a nuisance – how wrong I was! Bees are such amazing creatures and play such a crucial role in our everyday lives and spending time with them gives you a much greater appreciation for just how important they are.

081014_2303_SpotlightEr11.jpg  What do you think is the most important thing the average person needs to know about bees?

BKN Logo (new)  The average person needs to know that bees (through all of their hard pollination work) are responsible for 1/3 of our food supply. In other words, every third bite of food we take is the product of the bees’ hard work. From almonds and apples to avocados and raspberries, many of the foods that we love would not exist (or at the very least be a lot more expensive).

081014_2303_SpotlightEr11.jpg  How else can people help the bees? Does planting bee-friendly plants help them?

BKN Logo (new)  Planting bee friendly plants is an easy thing that everyone can do in their own backyards (or condo balconies) to help the bees! We encourage people to plant a variety of local native flowers that bloom at various times throughout the year (so the bees always have something to snack on). Bees love bright colours and they will reward you by giving you an amazing garden.

081014_2303_SpotlightEr11.jpg What one product or ingredient would you never ever use and why?

BKN Logo (new)  Aspartame. I try to avoid chemicals and artificial ingredients at all costs!

081014_2303_SpotlightEr11.jpg Where do you hope to take Beekeeper’s Naturals in the future?

BKN Logo (new)  We hope to be the company that consumers trust for innovative and sustainably sourced bee products to improve their health. As our company grows, our goal is to continue to use our expanded platform and reach to raise awareness about the bees and truly make a difference for our buzzing friends.

My thanks to Carly Stein for taking time out of her busy schedule to answer these questions. The Throat Relief Spray is available for purchase on the Beekeeper’s Naturals site and select locations. You can follow Beekeeper’s Naturals on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


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Beekeeper’s Naturals, Throat Relief

BKN spray and honeycomb

Ingredients: Bee propolis, non-GMO vegetable glycerin and purified water. Contains No: Dairy, egg, artificial preservatives, colours, artificial sweeteners, yeast, wheat, corn, soya or gluten.

My first time attending the yoga conference happened earlier this year in March. It was kismet for me when I saw the Beekeepers Naturals booth and got talking to co-founder Carly Stein about bees, reiki and natural products. I snapped up a bottle of the throat relief and it’s served me well since then! Anytime I feel a little froggy in my throat I will spray this golden elixir in my throat. It’s worked so well at helping me prevent any full blown sore throats and colds. Not only is bee propolis an antioxidant support, it is also anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral. Don’t get me wrong this isn’t the only thing I use to prevent colds, but it is definitely a very useful and important part of my healthcare regimen. I’ve already bought three more bottles since I finished the original one I bought in March. One bottles went to my parents, one is kept in our bathroom, and one is kept in our kitchen. I will definitely repurchase more in the future. This would also be a product to give as a gift to those who often get colds!

Cost: $10.00 CAD, 250 ml / 1 oz
Available at: Beekeeper’s Naturals, Ambrosia Natural Foods, Other stockists
Brand Origin: Canada
Rating: 5/5

Have you ever tried Beekeeper’s Naturals? Stay tuned tomorrow for my interview with the co-founder of Beekeeper’s Naturals, Carly Stein!


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August/September: Empties

8-August-Sept Empties

Sudsatorium, Living in the Momint – Review to come

I’ve tried a number of Sudsatorium’s conditioners before and I can’t decide which ones I like the best. Each conditioner has its special qualities. I like Living in the Momint for its soothing scalp properties and it really helps keep my hair manageable, soft and shiny.

Cost: $11.95 CAD, 150 ml / 4.2 oz
Available at: Natural CodeEtsy
Brand Origin: Canada
Rating: 5/5

Intelligent Nutrients, Styling Gel – Review to come

This styling gel has some impressive certifications! It’s certified organic, leaping bunny, and green e org certified (renewable energy). The gel has a very mild, almost spearmint-like smell to it. The hold is medium to firm. A little bit goes a long way so if you like a light hold, use this sparingly. I did like this gel but it’s a bit pricey so I’m going to keep looking for another styling gel.

Cost: $38.99 CAD, 200 ml / 7 oz
Available at: Thair, Intelligent Nutrients Canada
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 4/5

Intelligent Nutrients, Curly Hair Serum – Review to come

This curly hair serum keeps the frizzies at bay. But I found the hold too firm for me. I couldn’t get the right amount in my hair. I was either putting too much or too little. So I’ve started adding this to my leave-in to dilute it enough so that my hair doesn’t get frizzy but also isn’t too crunchy. Like their styling gel I find this a bit pricey so I’m unsure if I will repurchase this. Will have to do some more experimentation with this product.

Cost: $35.99 CAD, 140 ml / 5 oz
Available at: Thair, Intelligent Nutrients Canada
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 3/5

Parkdale Butter, Espresso Face BalmReview

This is a lovely face balm which I used over the summer. It’s a bit heavy for summertime use though its very hydrating and I love the smell of espresso. I enjoy Silkka Garden Apothecary’s Mint + Grapefruit Balm more so I won’t be repurchasing the Parkdale Butter Balm.

Cost: $24.99 CAD, 120 ml / 4 oz (also available in 60 ml size $14.99 CAD)
Available at: Parkdale ButterList of stockists
Brand Origin: Canada
Rating: 4/5

S W Basics, Cocoa Lip Balm – No review

This is a decent lip balm which kept my lips nicely hydrated. It’s slightly melty and soft so sometimes I would use a bit more than I intended. But all in all it’s a good lip balm.

Cost: $5.00 CAD, 4.5 g / 0.15 oz
Available at: Natural Code,
Brand Origin: USA
Rating: 4/5

Have you ever tried any of these products or brands? If yes, what did you think?