What the heck is Gluten anyway?
So, what is it?! It’s actually a family of nasty proteins found in all grains. NOT just wheat, barley and rye. I repeat, it’s in all grains. There are literally thousands of known gluten proteins. For real. That’s not a typo. Here’s the bad news—almost no research has been done on most of the members of this horrible family. The vast majority of the research has focused on the specific gluten protein that is found in wheat, barley, and rye. Most of that work is tied to celiac disease. This is definitely part of the problem and we’re here to dispel some of the misinformation that’s out there. After reading this, I really hope you’ll kick gluten to the curb.
WHAT IT IS + WHY WE LOVE IT
Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is a beautiful woody herb with fragrant evergreen needle-like leaves and flowers that bloom in pink, white, purple, or blue. Originally native to the Mediterranean Sea and Portugal, it does love humid areas, but it’s also very drought tolerant, making it easy to grow just about anywhere. “Rosmarius” means “dew of the sea”.
Rosemary was considered sacred by ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian civilizations. We think it’s pretty much the queen of herbs because of all of the benefits it offers. It’s one of our favorites for sure!
When you think of a plant with romantic, magical and protective properties, think of Rosemary. It was used in weddings and worn by brides. Anne of Cleves, who was Henry VIII’s fourth wife, wore a rosemary wreath at her wedding. It’s probably what kept her from losing her head (literally!) unlike two of his other wives. As part of the divorce settlement, Anne was given a higher status than any other woman in England except the queen and enjoyed the benefits of being named the “King’s Sister.” No doubt sweet rosemary had a hand in there somewhere!
Before diving into all the health and skin benefits that rosemary provides, no discussion would be complete without mentioning it in relation to food, especially that we are headed into the holidays. This aromatic herb enhances the flavor of many dishes, especially root vegetables and mixes especially well with garlic and lemon to create a special flavor profile. It reminds me of a walk in the forest on crisp fall day with its hints of pine and mint. Believe it or not, this earthy flavor works beautifully with honey and citrus fruits, so go ahead and try it in your desserts.
THE MANY HEALTH BENEFITS OF ROSEMARY
Rosemary has so many amazing benefits. Besides what it does for our skin (read on for more on that!), it has been shown to boost memory, improve mood, treat Alzheimer’s, heal cancer, reduce inflammation, relieve pain, and protect our immune systems. It helps stimulate circulation, detox the body, protect the body from bacterial infections, prevent premature aging, and heal multiple skin conditions.
We especially love how it helps to clear the mind, enhance clarity, and promote concentration. No wonder it’s associated with the third eye chakra! Use rosemary in a diffuser and you’ll be amazed at what happens. I personally deal with adult ADHD, which means there are days when, for lack of a better description, I’m like a cat with shiny objects. Being more of a dog person, you can imagine the challenges this presents! Nasty headaches can go hand-in-hand with this, so combining rosemary with peppermint and lavender can work wonders.
ROSEMARY + THE SKIN
Rosemary has so many benefits when it comes to our skin that it almost seems to good to be true. It’s great for all skin types, which makes it an ingredient that we highly prize. Here are some of the main benefits that rosemary provides…
1. Under eye bags—I deal with this because of environmental allergies and pollutants. Until I am able to call Colorado permanently home (we’re in countdown mode!), and I’m no longer bombarded, rosemary is one of my heroes. It drives out excess fluid that causes swelling and puffiness.
2. Acne fighter—Rosemary has powerful antibacterial, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and astringent properties that work together to not only fight off any existing acne, but prevent more from showing up. It does all this without drying out your skin. Major win!
3. Unclogs blocked pores—If you are in need of a skin detox, look no further. Rosemary clears out congested skin by purifying from deep within pores where it drives out stale sebum, dead cells, dirt, grime, pollution, and germs.
4. Minimizes large pores—The astringents in rosemary cause pores to contract and appear diminished.
5. Smooths fine lines and wrinkles—It actively fights free radicals that steal oxygen from healthy skin cells that can cause lines and wrinkles. Rosemary also increases skin’s elasticity.
6. Age spots—I don’t really like the term “age spots”. They don’t necessarily have a lot to do with age, and seriously, we are more into embracing and nourishing the skin we’re in. With that being said, “age spots” can appear when the skin isn’t getting nourishment it needs. Too much sun and harsh pollution don’t help, taking away oxygen the skin needs to breathe. Rosemary rejuvenates the skin with much needed nutrients, keeping the skin looking fresh and glowing.
7. Heals Eczema—Rosemary helps heal and soothe eczema and other inflammatory skin conditions (psoriasis, rosacea, rashes) due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties. This is a bit of an aside, but if you’re someone who suffers from any inflammation-related skin issues, besides having rosemary come to the rescue, take a look at what you’re putting on your skin and what you’re eating. There’s a lot of gluten hidden in plain sight and it absolutely does cause an inflammatory response. Your skin is a great indicator of what you might be getting exposed to.
8. Fades stretch marks and lowers cellulite formation—By flushing out toxins and improving circulations, stretch marks can fade and cellulite can be reduced.
When you take a look at our labels and our website, besides seeing a full listing of every single ingredient that is found in our products, you will also see a listing of what you won’t find in our products. We are exposed to so many toxins in our every day lives. I’m living proof of how prolonged exposure and overload can make us seriously sick. We’ve done a ton of research on the science about the effects of the ingredients that we don’t use on humans as well as plants, animals, and our world. We’ve also discovered along the way that the average person has over 200 synthetic chemicals stored in their bodies—imagine what happens long term—we’re like toxic storage dumps.
Did you know that fruit extracts are an amazing source of Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) along with enzymes and antioxidants? We all know that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” but fruits also benefit our skin in a major way when applied topically.
AHAs have been around for a long time—even Cleopatra, known for her legendary beauty, supposedly used them. The story goes that she bathed in sour milk (a source of lactic acid) to keep herself looking fresh and young. In this day and age, AHAs are found in a lot of skincare products, including ours. So, what are they?
Just that 2 word little phrase, “self-care” can trigger many of us. I’m just going to jump right out and say it. Self-care is not selfish. In fact, it’s a requirement. ALWAYS, and I mean always, take time for yourself, especially during the holidays when things can get nuts!
I like to use the analogy of the instructions your flight attendant gives you during the pre-flight safety demo. You are told to put your oxygen mask on FIRST before assisting other passengers. This is a great example of how necessary self-care is. Otherwise, you will be of use to no one, including yourself.
Here are some cozy self-care rituals to try during the chilly winter months:
Are you exfoliating your skin? Many of us take the time to make exfoliation a regular part of our face care routines, but we tend to ignore our bodies.
If you aren’t exfoliating your skin, please start, especially now that winter is coming (yes, that is a deliberate Game of Thrones reference!). In order for our skin to look and feel its best, we need to get rid of all of those excess dead skin cells. Even though our bodies continually produce new skin cells, over time, this process slows down as we age. What this means is that dead skin cells build up on the top layer of our skin. When there’s a build-up of dead skin cells, our skin doesn’t look its best and problems can develop.
So, how does exfoliation help our skin? Lots of ways!
Hello Autumn! Without a doubt, Fall is one of my favorite seasons. I love the changing colors and the brisk fall air. Today, I’m sharing with you my 5 Fall Must Haves I can’t live without.
PUMPKIN SPICED CIDER BODY CARE SET – LIMITED EDITION
Nothing says Fall like a perfect blend of pumpkin, cinnamon, and apple cider. Fall in love with this very special edition body care set created by yours truly. During the month of October, enjoy free shipping for this collection by using the code FALLFAVES at checkout.