Head to Toe Winter Salvation Part l - Sub-Zero Skincare - ecoCARE

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As is inevitable up here in the North...warm days disappear without even saying goodbye, giving way to the unavoidable fate of deep frozen days that last months without fail... It's time to call in the cavalry. Even whilst hibernation seems a viable option; daily duty calls for a strategic plan to protect yourself.

Rounding up a non-toxic arsenal to nurture & protect your body's biggest organ during the frosty frolick is key to maintaining overall wellness as well as manageability.

Head-to-toe reprieve from the elements:

Oils are curly hair’s best-kept secret, and unfortunately, they are so sadly misunderstood. This finishing product is a simple blend of natural oils that can be used in so many ways: sealing after styling, restoring moisture, and adding softness. - See more at: http://www.curltique.ca/product_p/je-se-obi2.htm#sthash.RR1tvZtM.dpuf
low on lather and scores sky-high on moisture. Rinses out silky and leaves your hair hydrated for super shiny soft - See more at: http://www.curltique.ca/product_p/bb-sh-2201.htm#sthash.bD2mlLDk.dpuf
rich leave-in cream helps to replenish moisture, improves wet combing, kicks up the shine and reduces frizzy flyaways. - See more at: http://www.curltique.ca/product_p/bbb-cd-001.htm#sthash.s0WAeuiE.dpuf
Sweet Milk Leave-in Conditioner
Sweet Milk Leave-in Conditioner

Slap the skindamage right off your face:

Multi-tasking Masques:

 

A few months ago Cocoon Apothecary sent us this delightful and decadent mud mask- the Ancient Mud Facial Mask quickly became a weekly staple as the seasonal shift took its toll on skin. Made with glacial mud and an infusion of natural botanicals- once a week is like visiting the spa for an overpriced-facial sans leaving the homefront. Dead Sea mud ( used since ancient times as a health and beauty treatment) remineralizes the skin and purifies pores of toxins and pollutants. amp; Canadian glacial marine clay from the coast of British Colombia: is an extremely fine powder that absorbs deep into pores to extract contaminants and excess oil. The mud and the clay marry to become a synergistic solution to pull out the bad and replenish the good.

Ecocentric Appeal/Feel-Good-Factor: Local Business, Fair Trade, Sustainable, Organic ingredients

If you are seeking an alternative to traditional mud masks Consonant has been selling out of their DHE masks  for months now. An innovation that's sure-to-be-staple in many a beauty editor's arsenal all year round, but winter is especially conducive to coveting this powerhouse multi-tasking masque. Detox, hydrate and exfoliate all @ once- whilst thinking to yourself, 'damn I am one efficient mofo.'... And fascinatingly- this masque is made from mineral-rich Manicouagan clay, extracted from the site of a 215 million year old asteroid crash in Quebec. Whoa. ( insert predictable 'out of this world' clean analogy here ) It's a rich and potent blend incorporating rosemary, willow bark and alpha-hydroxy fruit enzymes to uncover radiant skin just below the surface.

Ecocentric Appeal/Feel-Good-Factor: Local Business, Fair Trade, Sustainable, Organic ingredients

Luscious Liquid Gold:

For those who have been long-time loyal advocates of chemical-free care, Weleda is a household name. They were  and still are veritable pioneers when it comes to innovating new and unique toxin-free treasures. Recently they've expanded the already coveted line of Wild Rose revitalizing products to include what, for some might seem a step beyond the norm- for Weleda it's just another genius invention to keep your skin thriving. Wild Rose Smoothing Facial Capsules - are new-to-North America and these fabulous facial oil gems are divine decadence at its finest. Front and centre is Rosehip oil ( proven as a potent healing remedy employed by Egyptians, Mayans and Native Americans alike- its powers stretch far-beyond delightful fragrance, Rosehip is curative down to the cellular level)- Spa-worthy indulgence indeed- they're currently a facial-favourite in Weleda's Paris Spa. Anti-inflammatory, Anti-Oxidant and easily-absorbed by the skin- these teeny powerhouses are high in essential fatty acids and offer up an ( A,C,E ) hat-trick of vitamin action to soothe and protect against the wind-chill-factor. Delivering a wealth of nourishing wonder- it's no wonder these capsules have been referred to as 'liquid gold.' Prescription: For a restorative, intensive treatment: try a capsule/day for a month.  

We love a good cult classic:

Some of the first memories i have of the onset of my own skincare ritual- were centred around 'cold cream' (thinking back i can still smell the Noxema) - In reality the use of the eponymous Cold Cream goes back to the start of the 20th century, marketers in the 20's inevitably began targeting women using Hollywood royalty with flawless skin, apparently owed to their own daily use of this emulsion of oils, beeswax and water. By the 1940's it was a staple in every women's arsenal. The nostalgia remains and today its use has evolved to encompass everything from lip balm, to face mask to cleanser, to makeup remover to sunburn soother- thus its inclusion in today's skincare rituals stands strong- so for those who love a good cult-classic- try Weleda's Cold Cream; a luscious, nutrient-rich balm that goes to work restoring and protecting your skin’s natural moisture from damaging environmental influences. What's so special about this is that- instead of the industry standard mineral oil, lanolin cocktail- Weleda's formulation is based on an organic sweet almond infusion ( and its secret weapon is organic beeswax ) - this new school Cold Cream will go head to head with the Cold and win every time. P.s. use it on your hands & feet too for some ultra lux-lube action.

Ecocentric Appeal/Feel-Good-Factor: Fair Trade, Sustainable, Organically grown ingredients from their own bio-dynamic gardens.

In the ancient days of Greeks, Romans and Turks, cleaning the skin was perceived as an essential and was a highly ritualized practice, thought to purify both the skin and heal the soul. Interestingly ( and at once strangely resonant of today's societal superficiality ) One's social standing was oft' judged by the cleanliness of their skin. This phenomena gave way to perpetual cleansing- near any and every where... and an enormous evolution in the growth of bathhouses, public saunas, formal and informal suites devoted to the ritual ( not unlike today's spas ) Whilst we do not advocate judging another by the cleanliness of their epidermis, we are definitely obsessive ambassadors for cultivating a radiant, purified, supple, thriving glow.

For daily duty it's often a tough go... that winter intricacy; wind that dries, cold that snaps the pores on your face  shut like a steel door the second you step outside, sun-blinding snow that amplifies the need for an SPF, and a host of other factors that require some serious sorcery-type shit when it comes to protecting and balancing your skin during this season. The best skin sorcerers we know- come from the North of Ontario- where right now it's even colder than here in the city of T.O. - braving the harsh winters of the Haliburton area- Ron and Nadine Artemis have been happily brewing up bodycare bliss in the forests and valleys for as long as we've been around- in our eyes Living Libations became a cult classic when we started a raw chocolate love affair with them, back in 2009- but the real goods they deliver are in their Renegade Skincare line. If you want the purest, the most delicious and the most love-charged solutions here are your go-to-options: Seabuckthorn Best Skin Ever: the foundation creation for radiant skin. In effect this product is an  “all-in-one” and can be used from head-to-toe, while it's doing triple duty-  cleansing, exfoliating and moisturizing, it's the ultimate choice for brilliantly cleansing, ( moisturizing and toning the skin are a bonus )  While some peeps are still a little weary when it comes to putting oil on the skin- be assured that we only recco. the best and the boldest in quintessential options. Seabuckthorn Best Skin Ever will bring harmony and healing to every skin type - oily, dry, or combination skin.

WTF is a seabuckthorn? Thanks for asking- this trendy little berry has been making its way into our awareness in lotions, potions, tonics and drinks for some time now- and for good reason. It's a super-critical extract with an abundance of magical prowess that in the case of skin: offers up SPF protection and harmonizes the lipid layers on by targeting the root of the imbalance in any skin type. It's an extraordinarily rich omega cocktail of 3,6,9 and the ever-elusive omega 7 and the Living Libations blend captures over 190 bio-active substances in every drop- translation: an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, cell-regenerating, love-elixir, rich in C & E vitamins, beneficial fatty acids, hyper-protective and seeming capable of near-miracles. Whilst we are touting this as a cleansing option for all intensive purposes- This triple duty beauty baron is also a fantastic body-care serum. Use it on thirsty elbows, knees and anywhere else you long for your best skin ever.

Recommending Seabuckthorn Best Skin ever as a winter cleanser, requires that we also big up the tool by which to make your way to that bestskinever- Living Libations Organic Hemp Face Cloths- unlike traditional facial cloths which you use once and then flush- this multi-duty cloth is crafted to have just the right amount of absorbency  Ie: it won't suck up all of your precious product into itself. It's also textured to give you just that smidge of exfoliation. At an overall, here's the deal: "Renegade Beauty is the angelic-chorus that shimmers a song of beauty to your every cell."  so if you get hooked on the soundtrack- you can go all out and purchase a full winter-beauty kit here

Ecocentric Appeal/Feel-Good-Factor: Homegrown heroes, backyard revolutionaries, sustainable, wild-crafted biodynamic harvesting practices. Organic ingredients and extra points for being advocates for a world built around  consciousness, unity and love.

Lip Love:

This is always a tough one as there are so many wonderful options when it comes to quenching a parched pucker. But in the winter it's especially important to ensure you are lavishing your lips on the regular with the best in ecocentric protection. For lips we dig: Vegan Lip Balm by Fable Naturals. A passionate family-run company Fable Naturals is fully-focused on Fairtrade producers. Their balm is fully vegan ( no half-assing here ) these tasty balms are jammed full of hyper-moisturizing oils. They come in three flavours to delight your kisser- Vanilla Orange: like a creamsicle kiss, Mint: "like doublemint bliss" and Lemon: like endless summer. The reason this brand gets the first kiss here is severalfold- due to its innovative packaging- the balms arrive in adorable, recycled cardboard compost-able tubes and each purchase you donate to the charity of your choice, Fable supports several local and international charities- from empowering youth, to trees for life, to supporting locally impoverished women in hometown-Vancouver. Take some notforprofit generosity and couple it with sustainable packaging and fair trade ingredients- that shit is the balm. nuff said.

Ecocentric Appeal/Feel-Good-Factor: Canadian run business, socially-good profit sharing, supporting fair-trade through supply sourcing partnerships in Palestine and Peru.

Something we typically don't do, at Ecocentric Guide is offer tips- we show you the goods, and showcase the good but most times leave the DIY for someone else. However realistically, the movement has evolved this way and while we get so high on supporting such amazing homegrown sensations and their creations- real sustainability is much about solving alot of your own needs without spending big bucks in the process. The top 3 products we would suggest keeping around at all times, but especially during the winter are as follows; ( and Interestingly they also make a tasty-edible combo, and a mask-mixture that will make your skin glow-like-crazy. )

DIY winter wellness by ecocentric guide: coconut oil, honey and turmeric

Coconut oil: we've yet to discover anything this miraculous oil is not good for ( in fact if anyone can, we'll buy 'em their next jar ) luscious on hair, nails and thirsty skin head to toe- try slathering this tropical-scented goodness on as a face and hair mask at bedtime, and awake to find yourself supple and nourished. It's also proven as a superfood elixir offering a wealth of health benefits, so swallow a tablespoon at night while you're at it.

We dig: Dr. Bronner's Organic White Kernel Coconut Oil

Honey: use it as a hair or face mask, mixed with turmeric or on its own; honey is jam packed with antioxidant superfood wisdom that will whip the shit outta winter blues. This one is a bit sticky- pardon the pun- as the line is blurred when it comes to whether or not honey can be GMO- so if you want to get the most out of your honey, best bet is to buy a organic, medicinal grade version Manuka such as Wedderspoon premium raw manuka active

Turmeric: ancient ayurvedic secret no longer, turmeric is making the rounds and making it big- it's heavy-weight status as an anti-inflammatory ( 1 tablespoon or enough to equal 400-600mg of Curcumin ( the active anti-inflammatory component of the herb turmeric)  is equal to 2x400mg ibuprophen capsules.) It's potent painkiller properties arise from its ability to block the proteins that cause inflammation by stopping 'substance p' the neurotransmitter that signals pain to your brain. The use of turmeric in cultures round the globe dates back pre-history. Ancient Hawaiians used it for prevention and treatment of sinus and ear infections ( its astringent properties helped pull out the viral mucus) The sheer versatility of this sacred root makes it a must-have for overall wellness. So spice up your food, put it in a soup or smoothie, slather it on with some coconut oil for an instant-glow ayurvedic mask or dose it in capsules- just get it in ya.

Try Organic Traditions Turmeric or AOR Labs Curcumin-95 Caps

Follow up all of the above with at least 1-2 L of water ( preferably PH balanced- alkaline water- per day) and you will be beatin' the blah right out of yourself before the next snowfall.

Stay tuned for part deux - where we tackle l'hiver hair help.

Copyright 2013 ® Ecocentric Guide - all rights reserved

 

 

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