Finally - The Best natural DIY homemade deodorant recipe that actually works!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

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So I've been working hard to find a natural deodorant that works for me. I started out the commercial route - buying Tom's and others. They all sucked. Either they didn't work at all or they had questionable ingredients, or smelled horrid.

You can see my quest to create my own deodorant here -

The short and sweet version is this: I made a coconut/baking soda/charcoal deodorant that worked lovely until the coconut oil went rancid. Then, I started using just magnesium oil. Again lovely...until my armpits dried out from all the salt and became painfully rashy.

So here we are at the final installment of the homemade deodorant saga - the Magnesium Shea bar:
When my arms dried out from the salt spray (magnesium oil is just magnesium chloride mixed with water.) I started rubbing shea butter under my arms to heal them. Then I thought, why not put these two guys together and make application so much easier.

You see, spraying  magnesium oil under your arms is fine and relatively simple - but it is a watery mess and sometimes causes dripping.

So far, the bar is working out beautifully! I have cold hands so it never melts in my hands. I just grab it and slowly rub it across my arm pit so it melts and distributes it's goodness.

I did things a little differently though this time - I took a look at all the natural deodorants out there and borrowed a few components from each.

I apologize for the measurements that follow. I am always experimenting and do not have a "set" recipe. I will update if/when I find the ultimate combination.
I took and old glass make up jar - I believe it is 4oz jar and filled it around 3/4 of the way with shea butter. I melted this in a bowl of hot water. Then I added 1 tsp of crushed zinc, 1 tsp of magnesium chloride, 1/4 tsp of crushed charcoal (from a bamboo charcoal filter) and 2 droppers of jojoba oil. I then stirred it up as it cooled.

In the future, I will wait until the shea and jojoba have cooled considerably before adding my dry ingredients as they have a tendency to fall to the bottom and are difficult to redistribute evenly after they have sunkWhen it started to stay together, I transferred it to my 100% homemade mold and let it harden.

Then I popped it out and had this awesome bar. I have noticed that some of the salts are not distributed well in this bar and do scratch me while using. I will correct that next time by waiting for the shea to cool a bit. I have personally never enjoyed the smell of shea but it is subtle and I think the skin healing properties are worth it (and the smell is a zillion times better than the tea tree oil I had in my first batch of natural deodorant.)

The jojoba oil helps keep the shea less hard and it is also very nourishing to the skin. I really liked the charcoal component of my first deodorant so I wanted to bring it back - but in far less quantity to eliminate the staining and mess components.

Is the zinc necessary? I don't know but it's the main "active" ingredient in the Tom's deodorants so I thought why not.

So far so good....

Washi Tape Review #lartisantwashitape

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Washi Tape!! Where have you been all my life?? I like to do a lot of DIY projects and crafts, but had never heard of Washi Tape. How was that even possible?

Well, lucky for me - I was given the opportunity to review this 5 pack of Washi tape. And let me tell you - it's pretty awesome. So it's tape...but it's a lot more like painter's tape or masking tape than the tape we are used to using for packaging etc.

It is easy to cut, peels off nicely (like painter's tape) and it comes in all sorts of groovy colors. It makes all the world of difference when you wrap a gift in tissue paper and close it with a strip of this tape. You can use it to spruce up decorations, add flair to furniture, and make cards/scrapbook/decorate your office.

It's amazing stuff, and relatively inexpensive. I'll definitely be buying it again.

I received this pack of washi tape for free for review purposes. I did not receive compensation.

Baby Bamboo Cloth Diaper and Insert Review

Saturday, February 6, 2016

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Over a decade ago, I made cloth diapers for my babies. I modeled them off the brands that were popular at the time, with separate diapers for nighttime use, and crinkle pads to provide waterproofing. My how times have changed. 

These days, cloth diapers are succint all-in-one units. No crinkle pants. The diapers don't even crinkle! They are once-size fits all with amazing adjustable snap systems. And they come with inserts to take  you through the night.

One such brand of these diapers is Angelicware bamboo diapers. I had the opportunity to review one of these diapers and I was super impressed.

They are all sorts of adjustable! They are soft and comfortable...and absorbent!! They have no crinkly aspects and are wonderfully water resistant.

Plus, they are made of renewable organically grown bamboo! And they are priced to sell. I couldn't make them for the price they are being sold. What an amazing product and I can't believe how much things have improved since my diapering days.

I will be buying this type of diaper for my grandchildren (someday...)

I received one complimentary diaper for review purposes. No compensation was received.

Schmovie Family Edition Board Game Review

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During the cold winter, it's a good idea to get outside and move your body!'s also nice to snuggle up next to a fire and play games with your family. Playing games is a great way to bridge the generation gap, have fun, and make memories.

We love playing games, so I was more than happy to try out the new game: Schmovie.

You may have heard of Schmovie - it's an award winning game. But it's since been updated to be even more family friendly.

We set the game up and understood the instructions in less than 3 minutes! Woo!! This is a huge bonus - right up front - because sometimes games can get complicated and people can get antsy while you try to get things figured out.

This game is very much in the genre of Apples to Apples and other fun party games. It uses your creativity, is safe and okay for everyone that knows how to read/write, and can definitely bridge the generation gaps.

We had a lot of fun with it and will play it again....and often. I would highly recommend it to anyone with children, but I would also seriously consider it for adults. There's no reason adults can't play this alone...but it is more fun with kids.

I received a complimentary board game for review purposes. I did not receive compensation.

Crystal Collagen Gel Eye Mask Under Eye Treatment Review #geleyemask

Thursday, February 4, 2016

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I had the opportunity to review these Collagen Under Eye Treatment Pads
and I kind of loved them. They are really nice gel eye masks.

They stick to your face perfectly - I even walked around and did things without them falling off, and leave no sticky residue. There are no adhesives. They just stick on, soothe you, and eventually they end up dried out or "empty" and they come right off.

They feel so soothing while you wear them it's relaxing and cooling. It feels like you are pampering yourself and doing something good for your skin. I read through the ingredients and did not find any red flags or things that would make me feel bad using them.

I know that the skin absorbs everything we put onto it but I don't know if it can pick up collagen and use it. I would imagine these would be fantastic for under eye bags and puffiness.

I do not have puffiness or eye bags. What I have is dark circles. Really dark circles. I have had them all my life and my children also have them. I think it's genetic. Thin skin or too thin of bone structure? I don't know. I have never been able to get rid of them and so far these have not gotten rid of them either.

So if you have puffy eyes, then you will probably love these. If you want to do a spa day with the girls (or at home with your daughter's or friends) this would be a must include. It really just feels so nice, they would all feel super  pampered and special. If it does any good, who knows, but they will feel like it does (I have not seen a "visual change" in my under eye area, but I have only used them a few times so it might take more usage to see results.)

I received these under eye pads for free in exchange for a fair and unbiased review.

ExfoliMATE | Magic Exfoliating Body Cloth for Soft & Young Skin Review #greenheartlabs

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

I'm always on the lookout for the next best skincare item. Our skin is our biggest organ and is a huge indicator of health. So how do you keep your skin healthy? The best way is to work from within and eat healthy. Exercise is important. Finally, what you use on your skin is also important.

For this reason, I have switched to all natural products. I cleared my cabinets of all chemical laden lotions and creams. I even stopped washing my face with soap!

But what about exfoliating? In this area, I've almost always used a loofah sponge - for better or for worse.

So when I was given the opportunity to review the ExfoliMATE magic exfoliating body cloth, I went for it.

My first impression of the cloth was positive - it came nicely packaged, included instructions, and even came with a free gift. It included a nice little all natural lip balm - a very nice touch.

The cloth was like nothing I had ever used. I can best describe it as "what a loofah would look and feel like if it was a fabric." 

It is very loofah-like. For this reason, I will not use it on my hands, neck or face. Those areas are just too thin. I got it wet and used it on my legs. It was vigorous scrubbing. 

I think I will probably use this loofah cloth once a week and then see if I can or if I need to work up to more frequent use.

I think it's a great cloth and definitely exfoliates! I would recommend cutting the cloth in half. It's quite large and I think half the size is more manageable and gives you a chance to wash/dry one while the other is in use.

I received this cloth for free in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation.

Ceramic Industrial Magnets for Science, Crafts&Hobbies - Round - 100pcs in Box - Review #XbetMAGNET

Magnets are almost always useful - if you don't need them at the moment, something always comes up where they end up helpful. So when I was offered the chance to review this box of 100 magnets, I thought why not. They are really strong and they fit in an amazingly small little box. The magnets themselves are about the the size of a nickel. They have a lot of pull and will stick to each other. In fact, they are easy enough to store stuck to each other.

I have been using them on my white board, but I'm not sure that's the best use for them because they are a bit sharp. Since they are so strong, and sharp, there is a risk of scratching or tearing the whiteboard surface while trying to remove them. I am saving these for any upcoming science or art projects where magnets might be useful and will keep a few on hand for use in finding lost needles, screws, nails, etc.

I received this set of magnets at a discounted price for review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation.

NeoCell Beauty Bursts Review #GlowGetter

Monday, February 1, 2016

The links in the post below may be affiliate links. Read the full disclosure.
My Mother-in-law once remarked that she was taking a supplement for the health of her skin and nails. I didn't think much of it at the time, but the concept stuck with me. So when I was offered the chance to review the NeoCell Beauty Bursts, I accepted.

What are Beauty Bursts? They are supplements...of collagen, hyaluronic acid, and vitamin C.

There is no disputing that those ingredients are good for your skin, and most people are probably getting an inadequate supply.

I just starting taking them. And my taking them, I mean eating them. They are like little starburst candies - but with a deeper berry flavor. They taste really good. In fact, I think they are the perfect substitute for a candy craving. They are sweet and berryish, but not so tasty that you want to eat the whole bag. And the craving can be over like that.

I was not so thrilled that the first few ingredients are basically sugar. And each chew had 2 grams of sugar (just under 1/2 a tsp.)

As good as hyaluronic acid and collagen are for your skin - sugar is the opposite. Then again - if I was planning to eat a bag of m&m's and these were the alternative - then I think they have merit - even with the extra sugar.

I will have to report back on any actual skin changes. That type of change takes time.

I received a complimentary bag of fruit chews for review purposes. No compensation was received.

Peak Win Athletics Foam Roller with hidden compartment Review #PeakWinAthletics

Thursday, January 28, 2016

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If you've been spending time in the gym, trying to get healthy - then there will come a time when your muscles get sore. I am going to tell you - that using a Foam Roller, is the best way to improve muscle pain.

For years, I was too cheap to spring for a foam roller and instead used a weight bar. It did a similar job but hurt so much in the process. A foam roller is really the way to go and it is worth the cost.

But what if you work out in a gym and you decide to bring your foam roller with you? That's just one more thing to carry, right? Well.... I am going to recommend you leave your foam roller at home and do a quality job rolling out in your own home at your own convenience (and with nobody watching!!)

If you are going to bring the roller with you, this Foam Roller is a great choice. First off, it's about half the size of a regular foam roller so it won't be a gigantic thing you're carrying. Second, it has an internal storage compartment. Throw your purse and keys inside and that's one less thing for you to carry.

Still, I think you should leave it at home. Leave it in your gym and store your secret stuff inside. Your journal. Your gym notes. Your expensive.... whatever, because nobody is going to think to find your "valuables" in the gym. Not inside a foam roller. Not in the gym period.

And while you're welcoming this foam roller into your home, use it to roll out your sore muscles.

I used it and it works great. It's "ridged" so it digs in a little more than a solid roller and that can be really nice. It's small enough to roll under each individual leg without getting in the way of the other (a big plus) and it stores easily because it's a reasonable size.

This roller does come with a booklet to describe how to use it, but it's really unnecessary. Just roll where it hurts. You'll figure it out. It's pretty intuitive.

I received a free foam roller for review purposes. I did not receive compensation.

Emergency Dental Issues

Emergency Dental Issues

Tooth pain can be excruciating. It is something that can be debilitating to the point that you don't want to get out of bed. There are a few reasons as to why you would experience tooth pain, some that isn't as severe as others. No matter what you feel in the mouth, you can see an emergency dentist in Orange Park who can help you feel better. 

A filling that comes out of the tooth is one of the most common dental emergencies. Intense pain could occur as soon as the filling comes out if the nerves are exposed. You might not feel anything for a few weeks or a few months. Some people aren't bothered by a missing filling. However, it needs to be dealt with as soon as possible as there is a potential for infection to set up in the tooth, leading to the bloodstream. Contact a dentist as soon as you notice that the filling is gone so that an x-ray can be done to see the extent of the damage. The tooth could be filled again if there is enough support, or you might need to get it extracted. 

Another common issue is when a tooth is knocked out. This could happen from playing sports or somehow running into something at home or at work. Children sometimes see more teeth that are knocked out because they tend to fall easily compared to older children and adults. Place the tooth in a glass of milk, and get to the dentist as soon as possible. If you make it in time, there is a chance that the tooth can be replaced. If the tooth is in the front of the mouth, then an implant might be something to consider. However, the dentist will need to look at the gum structure and if there are any roots left behind. 

Other types of dental emergencies include cavities that need to be filled that cause severe pain and abscesses that occur as a result of a missing tooth or an infection that has developed. Any dental emergency should be handled with care and as soon as possible to prevent further damage.
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