My heart is heavy. A friend sent an email about a woman, Diane*, whom I met last year. She just passed from breast cancer. I hardly new her. Met her a few times at Komen events and she was always smiling. She had an amazing amount of positive energy radiating from her, the type of person you just wanted to chill with. The news of her passing, or any person with cancer passing, puts a heavy weight on my heart. I think about the struggles she had to endure, her kids' heartaches, and the hole her husband must feel.
Diane and I hugging it out with Baby M before the Race.
I am a 15 month survivor. At times, it still shocks me that I "got it". Thankfully, I was a fortunate case; but don't think for one day that I don't question whether I will have a recurrence. Cancer has wrapped it's deathly arms around me once, who knows if it will come back for seconds. I know it is pointless to think like that and truthfully, I don't dwell. I am too busy with my screaming kids, laundry, dirty casa, baby-doll Husband, and trying not to forget what day it is or what is happening in the week (writing things down would be waaaay to easy). By the way, I am grateful that that is the extent of my worries at present.
I try to be as healthy and fit as I can but really, I kinda was before cancer. Hearing about Diane brings me back to why I started this blog to begin with. I started it as a rebirth, to try to change my life and my families so that we try to eliminate as many toxins as we can from our lifestyle. It is something I can actively do and have control of--a way to protect myself. It is not just trying to be "green" or super healthy, but it also a big F U to the many companies and corporations that feed, strive, and get rich off making us sick. Who do they think they are?
What causes cancer and why some people get it and others don't is a ginormous mystery. I am not pretending to have it figured out but I know what doesn't help breast cancer:
Parabens- used as preservatives in many, many cosmetic products
BPA- found in plastic and canned goods
Pesticides- sprayed on fruit and veggies
More in this ah-mazing video. Watch it.
So along with this journey, finding cosmetic/beauty products was a biggie for me. To people that know me, it is no surprise that I am a product whore. Whore I say! I can't get enough and I will spend every cent of my money to buy more products that make me happy. I am on a continuous prowl for the best eco/green/natural beauty/skin/soul glowing products and I hoard with no shame.
In this quest, I have learned a great deal about organic, natural companies.
1. Many greenwash. They say they are healthy but they trick you and use not so healthy ingredients. For example, I bought a self-tanner from Sun not too long ago on the internet that said it was paraben free. When I got it, I look on the back under ingredients and there are three different parabens listed. Really!?!? On the front of the bottle it said PARABEN FREE!
2. Many are fabulous but have a hard time growing because it can be difficult to get the purist ingredients at mass quantities that keep within their shelf life (remember, we don't want nasty preservatives like parabens). This makes it hard for a little company to supply at many boutiques, Whole Foods, etc.
3. Many are useless. Plain and simple. They don't work.
4. Many have started because of loved ones with cancer, diseases, or sickness. Why does it take people or those close to us to get sick for us to examine our environment? I don't know if I ever would have switched if I hadn't gotten cancer.
So what it comes down to is who do I trust and how do I get the purist green product that works?
I first heard about alex+von from another natural cosmetic company. They sent an email about the benefits of working for this new and upcoming company, alex+von. I was immediately intrigued. It is funny because I was currently in discussion with The Husband about wanting to find a company or brand I can get behind and try to help grow and share. It was kismet, clearly.
Anyway I can feed my addiction with companies I believe in, I am game. alex+von is my dealer and supplier (I write laughingly, Husband has complete opposite reaction). It is a company that represents organic, natural, eco brands. Consultants have the choice to represent one line or as many as they would like. Ahhhhh freedom! It is perfect partnership for smaller companies as well and a great way for them to get their product info out.
Last week, I had the privilege of meeting the ladies behind alex+von. They wanted me to come and test new makeup brands they were thinking of signing. Oh my gawd was I excited. Giddy to be exact. My passion, eco makeup smooshed with meeting brilliant ground breaking ladies was galactic. Meeting them just made me more ecstatic about this growing company that I am so stoked to be a part of.
Now, I can't divulge in any secrets. I am a master secret holder (not in the slightest) but I am professional. Nuff said.
What I can tell you is that they just signed with Original Moxie, a fierce, amazing natural company that specializes in hair products. We will sell shampoo, conditioners, and styling products. Being the product whore that I am, I ordered every sample I could when I heard about the possible partnership. I wouldn't be exaggerating when I say that their products are like pixie dust to a fairy. I am incredibly impressed thus far. My whole family now uses it and it makes me feel so warm and fuzzy inside knowing I have some styling products I feel good about putting in my mane and my boys hair.
More to come with Original Moxie. alex+von is still trying to work out a few things with them. I will let you know when they are up and running on my website.
Right now my focus in on 100% Pure and Suki. These companies couldn't be more different except that they both strive to be as natural and pure as possible.
Inspired by her garden, product developer Susie Wang created 100% Pure Cosmetics to complement her healthy lifestyle. Made with pigments from fruits and vegetables along with natural food-grade ingredients, 100% Pure marries all-natural ingredients with high-end cosmetic formulas to create beauty products in a class of its own. 100% Pure develops highly concentrated formulas without the use of synthetic or toxic ingredients, water, thickeners, or other fillers. 100% Pure products are never tested on animals and it is the company's mission to help and save animals.
100% Pure cosmetics are the first and only company colored from antioxidant rich fruit and vegetable pigments. While other color cosmetics are colored with either synthetic dyes or minerals, 100% Pure uses fruit and vegetable pigments. All the antioxidants and vitamins are in the pigments so you will be applying the healthy nutrients of the fruits directly on your skin.
100% Pure makes products that compliments your everyday routine and helps maintain and enhance your skin. Pure offers an amazingly huge variety of bath and body products in many tantalizing scents.
On a side note, the newest reports on lead in major name brand lipsticks is no bueno. Just another reason to be extra cautious of what we put on. I love that 100% Pure has only fruit and vegetable pigmented makeup. The colors are beautiful and the makeup is stunning.
Suki is the other dope line I love to sell. According to Suki, "there clinically-proven natural solutions® is the first & only synthetic-free cosmetical solution that integrates advanced technology with clinically proven results. Each product is tested to work in unison with your skin, delivering a clear, youthful & healthy complexion. There "evolutionary skin care science™" philosophy grew from Suki's mission to develop a completely new way of formulating skin care - immersing high potency natural cosmeceuticals in synthetic-free bases. There product integrity is backed up by Suki's organic innovation lab™ & held to the highest standards in manufacturing, ingredients, packaging & shipping - all with a positive impact on the environment & quality of life in mind."
Because Suki uses the highest, purist ingredients possible the price point is higher. All of the products are in beautiful glass containers. Suki is a fabulous line that is proven to work.
Everyone falls into two categories.
- for dry and/or mature skin
- uses hydrators, vitamins, and antioxidants
- to strengthen and protect skin's integrity
- for oily and/or problematic skin (acne, rosacea, eczema)
- uses anti-inflammatory, bacteria-fighting and resurfacing
- agents to bring skin back to health
Another reason I love Suki is because of their involvement in Breast Cancer Action. They are a safe cosmetic company that gives back to such an important cause. Read more here.
My collection of 100% Pure and Suki have grown so much. I love to share my passion and these fab products. If you are interested in hanging out with some great peeps and learning more about 100% Pure and Suki at an open house -or- if you want to host an informal fun get together and reap some of the hosting benefits then email me email@example.com and I can hook you up. I have parties coming up that need your fabulousness.
As my gift to you, my dear readers, I would love to giveaway two of my favorite products. The oh-so-famous-bestseller 100% Pure Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream and the Organic Chocolate Body Scrub. Divine!
Who doesn't love a Coffee Mocha in the am?
Giveaway ends on March 8, 2012 at 12:01 am est.
I have Rafflecopter to help out. Just log in with Facebook or email and it will guide you from there.
If you are on Facebook, please, please help get the word out and share this giveaway!
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Shop at www.livinthegreenboutique.com
*Name was changed in respect for her family.