Monday, June 23, 2014

WooBamboo - A Kid's Toothbrush Review

Disclosure: I received this product as part of an advertorial.

In an effort to "green" my mind, body and soul...Ok, mostly my household, and frequently used products, I have become increasingly aware of the amount of YUCK we have in our house. Chemicals, toxins and hidden ingredients that are absorbed into our body throughout the day, each and everyday. On top of that, I've started thinking about the "footprint" I leave behind on this Earth. I want our planet to be around (and livable) for my children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc... Fortunately many organic and "green" companies make sustainable products that work with the Earth instead of against it. One super-awesome company is WooBamboo. They have created a line of toothbrushes that are sustainable, biodegradable, antimicrobial, trendy and customizable! What more could you ask for? I got to try a free sample of their WooBamboo Sprout Toothbrushes (they came in a 2-pack), which are perfect for kids, or travel!

My kids immediately wanted to open up the package and get to brushing. They love the colored bristles and the novelty of a "wooden" handle. They are perfect for their little hands and mouths. Mine came with Super Soft bristles, which is what would be recommended by the dentist, although they can make them with Soft or Medium bristles as well. There was also an insert in my package that really resonated with me:

I really think this is such a simple, yet powerful statement about the impact of even the baby steps we make. I was also pleased to find a hand-written note in there too! I love when a company values their customers and takes the time to recognize them. Many businesses get very large and lose sight of the fact that they would be nonexistent without the consumers who buy their products.

Ok, now that you see how cool the company is, let me talk a little about the toothbrushes. These brushes have quickly turned into the most frequented toothbrush that my children use. My son, who despises brushing his teeth, has been excited to use this brush, and chooses it over his electric toothbrush every time. My daughter, while only 2, picks this one out of the toothbrush holder over her Piglet toothbrush. This, in toddler terms, is a two thumbs up approval. Mom-wise, I love that these toothbrushes have super soft bristles so they are gentle on their teeth. I also like that, if I hold the toothbrush up to the light, I can physically see the space between the bristles and the handle. I feel that many times "gunk" collects there in traditional plastic toothbrushes, but with these I can see it, and rinse the brush thoroughly in order to remove said "gunk". On top of that, the handle is made from Moso Bamboo which is naturally antimicrobial. HUGE plus when you are dealing with kids, as you almost always don't want to ask where their hands have been. Additionally, Moso Bamboo can grow up to 4 feet in a single day, making it a highly sustainable resource, and it isn't the same bamboo that the Pandas eat, so it doesn't take away from their food supply. 

For these many reasons, I give WooBamboo Eco Toothbrushes 10 stars:

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If you are interested in trying WooBamboo Toothbrushes out for yourself and/or your children, you can check their list of on-line and local retailers here. I would also recommend following WooBamboo on Facebook, Twitter and Google + to keep up with their business as the grow (it says on the website that they are open to suggestions, and that they plan to expand their line!!!!). Plus, tell your dentist you want them to offer these in their office - they are CuStOmIzAbLe!!!! 

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Lightly Moisturize Your Summer Skin With Instanatural Hyaluronic Acid

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

Hyaluronic Acid is another one of those beauty product ingredients that seems to be getting it's name out there. Hyaluronic Acid is something that is already present within the human body, where it's highest concentrations are found in fluid round the eyes and joints. More recently, it has been incorporated into products used in skincare regimens under the claim that it can moisturize the skin and reduce the signs of aging that we all are so apprehensive about. Ironically, we spend our teenage years trying to look decades older than we are, and about the time we reach that age, we begin trying to look like we are decades younger.
Instanatural Hyaluronic Acid is a serum that uses this up-and-coming ingredient. They claim that their serum:
Improves skin texture and brightness with intense moisture and balance

- Reduces appearances of dark circles & puffiness

- Uses the highest concentration of pharmaceutical HA
- World's Most Expensive Brands Use The Same HA
- Smooths Texture, Diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
- Extremely Moisturizing While Plumping Up The Skin - Formulated with the highest concentration of pharmaceutical HA - Cruelty Free, No Animal Testing

Lucky for my inner almost-thirty-year-old-turned-anti-aging-freak, I received a free bottle of Instanatural Hyaluronic Acid. The first thing I noticed was the heavy, sturdy glass bottle with the nice pump-style dispenser. The serum itself is a clear, gel-like substance with a light, refreshing scent. I have been using this after cleansing and toning my face, under my regular moisturizer. I suspect as the warmer weather progresses, I will use this as my moisturizer, as it is light and absorbs quickly, saving me time. During the Summer months I have no need for a heavy moisturizer, and no time to mess around getting sweaty in the bathroom. It also wears well under make-up. I cannot speak towards its combative force against aging because I don't really have many signs of aging present, and I assume continued use (more than just a couple of weeks) would be required to make bold statements about that. I will say that I enjoy using this product as part of my daily skin care regimen, and love many things about the company themselves. First of all, this product is made in the USA, is cruelty-free and uses 98% natural ingredients where 72% of them are organic. Additionally, it is free of parabens and does not use alcohol as an ingredient, which can be harsh/drying on the skin. This makes me feel good about what I am putting on my skin, as it is our biggest organ (that's right, what you put ON your skin is absorbed into your bloodstream the same way as what you consume).

I give the Instanatural Hyaluronic Acid a 10 out of 10 stars, and highly recommend it:

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Follow Instanatural on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. They offer many opportunities to try some of their products in exchange for honest reviews, and they have a surprise for their followers once they hit 1,000 fans on Facebook!

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Purge Your Pores with Healing Tree Bamboo Charcoal Soap

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

I am always on the look-out for new products to add to my beauty routine. New eye shadow to bring out the super brown color of my eyes? Yes, please! New lip gloss to add to the 500 I already own? I NEED it! New eye liner to make those "wings" easier to create? Yes, yes, and YES! Make-up is so fun to experiment with, and I have found that it is easiest when you have a well prepped "canvas", if you know what I mean. And if you don't, I mean face. I have struggled with acne since I was a teenager, and I have tried very many treatment option. One of the best treatments that actually worked for my face was a medication that I took orally. Additionally, my skin was perfectly clear each time I was pregnant. At this time in my life I do not wish to treat my acne with medication because of the long list of side effects, and the uncertainty of what the impact is 20-, 30- or 40- years down the line. And, I can't just reproduce every time I get a pimple.... It just isn't realistic. Although we do make pretty cute kids...

As I mentioned in a prior post, I have been getting a ton of beauty related products in exchange for honest reviews, and this is the latest! The Healing Tree Bamboo Charcoal Soap.

Charcoal seems to be yet another beauty trend that is on the rise. Charcoal is known for its incredible ability to absorb, and specifically, absorb all the bad stuff. Hence the reason it is used when people have to get their stomachs "pumped". Obviously we aren't eating the soap, so we don't need a warning here about not consuming charcoal (or soap) in your spare time, correct? This particular soap uses bamboo charcoal which is said to be 4 times more absorbent than wood charcoal. Therefore, if you suffer from skin conditions such as acne, eczema, psoriasis or severely dry skin, this is the stuff for you! If you don't, The Healing Tree also carries a Green Tea Soap which is high in antioxidants, and a Bamboo Vinegar Soap for problematic skin that also works well for all skin types.

I will say that I was nervous about this soap because it is black. I use it while I am in the shower so I don't have to worry about it getting on anything. It is quick and easy to lather, and leaves your skin feeling very clean. In fact, it had no problem removing my make-up including my very full coverage foundation (formulated to cover tattoos...just so you get the gist). You can use this for your entire body, and if you suffer from any of the above mentioned skin issues on other parts of your body (e.g. acne on your chest or back, dry/cracked heels) I would use it there as well. It is important to remember that when you start using a new product, especially one designed to pull out the gunk in your pores, that it may get worse before it gets better. This is simply a result of the yuck coming out, which over time, is a good thing.

The Healing Tree was kind enough to send me 2 bars of the Bamboo Charcoal Soap to test out (thank you!), so I gave the extra one to my sister-in-law (AKA my BFF and partner in crime). Just a couple of weeks ago she was asking me about where she could get more because she is in love with the way this soap has transformed her skin. She has very oily acne-prone skin, and her skin was CLEAR! She uses it twice a day, so maybe I need to get over the black suds and get to using it twice a day as well. My acne stems from hormones, so cleansers and treatments don't always prevent it, but they help clear it up faster, and this soap delivers in that respect. It smells a bit like dirt and charcoal, but I am not bothered by the scent whatsoever, and it doesn't linger on your skin. Plus, each bar costs only $3.99. That is not a typo.... it costs three dollars and ninety-nine cents per bar. What a steal of a deal!

The Healing Tree Bamboo Charcoal Soap is made from simple, natural ingredients, is hypoallergenic and free of added fragrances. In fact, the only ingredients are: vegetable oil, water, glycerin and bamboo charcoal. Plus, they don't test on animals!

I have enjoyed using The Healing Tree Bamboo Charcoal Soap, and give it 10 stars:

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Don't for get the show The Healing Tree some love, and follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. They provide excellent health tips and fun contests through those outlets.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Get Your Tresses Summer Ready With Adovia Dead Sea Mud Shampoo & Adovia Mineral Balsam Conditioner

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

One of my biggest struggles when it comes to hair care is my dry, itchy scalp. It is such a disgustingly embarrassing cycle which goes a lot like this: Wash hair, dry hair, style hair, itch scalp to the point of bleeding, scabs form, scalp gets itchy from scabs, itch scabs off and repeat. I have tried many of the available products on the market, but they don't really help with the itching. The ones that do actually cover the itching, do not fare well in the scent department, and I am pretty driven by scent, so we can't do business together. I recently had the opportunity to try a shampoo and conditioner that are a little different than some of the traditional dry scalp treatments. I received a full size Adovia Dead Sea Mud Shampoo and Adovia Mineral Balsam Conditioner.

The products smell similar and each have a powdery floral scent. It isn't my most favorite scent in the world, but it is FAR superior than some of the "medicated" treatment shampoos. Also worth mentioning, the Adovia Dead Sea Mud Shampoo is a pearl-ized charcoal color. It's very interesting, as I have never used such a dark colored shampoo before. I may have been a little terrified the first time I used it. Obviously I'm still here, so it's all good! The Adovia Mineral Balsam Conditioner is plain white - nothing suspicious there. After using them I found that my hair felt very clean! Above anything else, I feel that the description of these products should include their ability to clarify the hair, because I truly felt that my hair was stripped of all the gunk and nastiness that builds up over time. My hair was soft and manageable too! Oftentimes products that give you that deep clean, also leave your hair feeling like straw, so my tresses and I appreciated that these products cleaned them and restored moisture. I am such a product junkie that I literally have a million few shampoos and conditioners readily available in my shower. I use this pair once or twice a week to keep my scalp healthy and to get that "fresh start" feeling. I also have to give them credit for addressing my itchy scalp just as well as the medicated brands without that horrific smell!

 Adovia's Dead Sea Mud Shampoo is specially formulated with natural ingredients such as Dead Sea Mud, Chamomile & Olive Oil to bring deep hydration and moisture to the scalp, relieving itching and flakiness. Dead Sea Mud contains the highest concentration of minerals found in mud anywhere in the world. These minerals are all essential for proper skin function and help to regulate moisture retention as well as hydration.
Made with Real Dead Sea Salt - 100% Pure and Genuine for an infusion of 21 Minerals Essential to Proper Skin and Hair Function. Leaves Hair Looking Hydrated, Healthy and Silky.Helps to Reduce the appearance of Dandruff and Dry, Flaky Scalp. Aloe Vera Deeply Nourishes the Scalp and Hair - Hydrating it from Within. Dead Sea Salt contains more than 21 skin and hair rebuilding minerals such as magnesium, calcium, sulfur, bromide, iodine, sodium, zinc and potassium. 

I definitely recommend the Adovia Dead Sea Mud Shampoo and Adovia Mineral Balsam Conditioner and I give them 8 stars:

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You can check out their entire line of pampering products here, "like" them on Facebook here, and follow them on Twitter here. That way you can stay in the loop with new products, promotions and giveaways!

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.