[HEALTH & BEAUTY] How to Minimize Dark Under Eye Circles

IMG_1503They seemed to appear overnight. What you may ask? Those dreaded dark under eye circles.

We weren’t sure why some of us seemed more prone to getting them. So, we researched and explored potential causes and remedies that can help to minimize them.

Here’s what we found as some potential causes of dark under eye circles:

  • Lack of sleep and too much sleep can be the culprits.
  • Seasonal allergies and reactions to skin irritants can cause them as well.
  • Hyper-pigmentation or discoloration of the skin.
  • Dehydration. Our body is comprised of 60% water so staying hydrated is important for proper body function.
  • Anemia. Iron-deficiency anemia is a common type of anemia in women that can result in improper oxygen flow throughout the body including the eye area.
  • Vitamin deficiency. Insufficient vitamins needed to promote proper eye health can be a cause.
  • Puffy eyes and fluid retention can make under eye circles appear more pronounced.
  • Genetics. Unfortunately, they can be hereditary.
  • Stress. Enough said.

What are some remedies that can help minimize dark under eye circles?

  • Cold compresses such as ice packs and cool cucumbers can help to reduce puffiness and constrict blood vessels to minimize dark under eye circles.
  • Get more (or less) ZZZs. Getting on average six to eight hours of beauty sleep and going to bed and rising at the same time can help.
  • Propping your head with an extra pillow while sleeping can help to minimize fluid retention and minimize the appearance of dark under eye circles.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink about 40-60 ounces of water daily to maintain proper bodily functions.
  • Consume more foods rich in vitamins K, C, B, and E that promote eye health.
  • Exercise does the body good. It can help manage stress and improve blood and oxygen flow throughout the body.

For those with dark under eye circles out there, we hear you! And, we hope this helps. Please keep in mind that if problems persist or worsen, please seek the advice of a medical practitioner.

Thank you for being kind to your body!

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HEALTH & BEAUTY: Skin Care Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

IMG_1315Have you used apple cider vinegar (ACV) as a hair rinse? As a facial exfoliant? Or, as a toner? If so, then you know about some of the benefits of apple cider vinegar for your skin. It’s an all-natural, head-to-toe skin care product!

We’ve been touting the benefits of ACV, the fermented juice of crushed apples that contains vitamins, minerals and acetic and citric acids. It helps to balance the PH level of the skin to help promote skin cell renewal and proper function.

Here are some of the ways ACV can be used as part of your skin care regimen:

Hair rinse – An ACV rinse helps to detangle hair, revitalize shine, and cleanse your hair and scalp by removing residue and buildup from hair care products. It contains properties that naturally remove dirt and debris and has also been known to help manage dandruff. After shampooing, pour a mixture of one part water and one part ACV through hair, and then rinse with water.

Facial Toner – When the skin’s PH level is in balance, skin cells can regenerate, the skin can function properly, kill bacteria and manage excess oil. As a toner, mix one part ACV to two parts water (use more water if you’re skin tends to be more sensitive).  Dab a cotton ball into the mixture and smooth once or twice over face.

Facial Exfoliant – Weekly exfoliation is important to keep skin clear and smooth. ACV helps by removing pore-clogging dead skin cells that can cause breakouts. As a facial exfoliant, mix one part ACV to four parts water (use more water if you’re skin tends to be more sensitive).  Dab a cotton ball into the mixture and smooth over face in circular motion. Then rinse.

Skin Softener – Add some ACV into your bath for a soothing and skin-softening soak.

ACV can also be used to help soothe sunburn, aid in digestion, boost immunity, and whiten teeth. Remember, it’s best to dilute the ACV with water before consuming or applying onto the skin. And, look for raw, organic, unpasteurized, and unfiltered ACV that includes the sediment also referred to as “the mother”. That’s the good stuff!

Thanks again for being kind to your body! And, happy pampering!

HEALTH & BEAUTY: What’s in Your Lipstick?

We’re minimalists when it comes to wearing makeup. Often opting for makeup-free Mondays and makeup-free Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays….okay, pretty much makeup-free everyday :). The only cosmetic we always keep in our purse is lipstick.

Statistics indicate that we “eat” about four pounds of lipstick every year. While that statistic is debatable, there’s no doubt that we ingest a lot of toxic chemicals including those that may be in the lipsticks that we put on our lips, on our bodies.

We’re always in search of the right shade of lip color. And, it’s taken us some time to research and find the right lipstick that’s free of as many toxic chemicals as possible. Our NS Fans have expressed similar frustrations in finding 100% artificial chemical-free lip stick. So, we suggest weeding out as many as possible.

We discovered several major lipstick brands that we like. The following are ones that we discovered at Sephora (we love that store!):

  • Bite – Our go-to brand for lip color, offering smooth and silky coverage that we like.
  • Tarte – Some of the lipsticks felt a little chalky and drying to our lips, yet we like their shades.
  • Fresh – Sugar lip tint provides a shimmer of color, for when we just want some sheer coverage.

There are many out there and we love playing at Sephora’s cosmetic counters :). We encourage you to find the right lip color for you and, most importantly, find ones that are free of as many artificial chemicals as possible.

What’s your go-to lipstick?

Thank you for being kind to your body!

HEALTHY & BEAUTY: Prep Your Body for the Holidays

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We’re all busy. And, we seem to be getting busier every day, leaving us less time to maintain a healthy lifestyle. With the holidays fast approaching, more travel, family gatherings and social engagements often fill our already full calendars. Yet, when that happens, it’s even more important to find ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

So, how are you prepping your body for the holidays? Here are some tips that may help:

1. Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water is important to maintain proper bodily functions and to flush toxins from the body. When exercising or traveling, it’s important to drink even more water to replenish our bodies since exercise and dryer environments can deplete more essential fluids.

2. Exercise. We admit that we’re not the most diligent about following a regular exercise routine, yet we’re constantly on the move when it comes to our market life. So, whether you enjoy jogging, swimming, or practicing yoga, continue exercising to keep your body active and in shape.

3. Eat right. Fill your plates with more fruits, fish and nuts. Fruits such as berries are high in antioxidant vitamins like A and C, and consuming more fish and nuts such as almonds that are rich in essential fatty acids can help reduce inflammation and keep the body healthy.

4. Get eight hours of sleep. Can we tell when we’ve gotten at least eight hours of sleep? Of course we can. We look and feel younger and more refreshed!

So, stay healthy this holiday season. We wish you a wonderful time with your family and friends!

HEALTH & BEAUTY: Decoding Green Juices

See the supermarket aisle in the photo…we live there! Okay okay…we don’t actually “live” there, but you’ll often find us there studying the ingredient labels on each bottle.

We’ve probably tried the majority of the green juices that you see on the shelves since we like to drink our fruits and vegetables as well as eat them. We often bring a bottle of green juice with us when we’re at our various markets. But with so many types of green juices out there, how do we choose the “right” ones? Are all green juices created equal?

Here are some things we look for in green juices:

  1. Look for cold-pressed. Cold-pressure processing crushes and presses the fruits and vegetables, using processes that generate less heat. This keeps the juice as fresh and as nutrient-rich as possible.
  2. USDA organic and non-GMO (genetically modified organism) preferred. Food and beverage companies that have these certifications operate and process their products in accordance with specific government regulations.
  3. Avoid added sugars and salts. Many fruits and vegetables have natural sugars and sodium, so keep an eye out for ingredient labels that have added sweeteners such as cane sugar, corn syrup, and other artificial sweeteners.
  4. Take note of the top ingredients. If the juices include a plethora of other ingredients or the top ingredients are not the ones being touted, then they may not be the ones to choose.

We hope this helps in decoding green juices. And, we hope to bump into you in the green juice aisles some time :).

Thank you for being kind to your body!