Making the Switch to a Natural Deodorant

Thursday, April 28, 2016

I have tried every type of deodorant under the sun from conventional and clinical strength to natural. I always wanted to love a natural deodorant but just couldn't find one that worked so I always ended up switching back to the conventional ones, because I am not about to walk around being smelly. It seems to be one of the hardest personal care items to switch over to natural on. However, after doing some research and testing over the last 2 months I can happily say that I have officially switched over to natural deodorants and I actually think they work even better for me than conventional ones!

Why I Made the Switch

Your body needs to sweat. It's how it regulates its temperature and eliminates toxins. Also, it isn't your sweat that stinks. The odor comes from your sweat mixing with the bacteria that is found naturally on your skin. By using antiperspirant you are interfering with your body's natural process with aluminum components that plug up your sweat glands. If you didn't know, those same aluminum components have been linked to both certain types of cancers and Alzheimer's. There are also a mess of other chemicals like artificial fragrance which is really just another word for whole bunch of toxic chemicals that don't have to be listed as ingredients. These harmful chemicals are unnecessary and don't belong on your skin or in your lymphatic system.

What Happens When You Switch

When you switch from a conventional deodorant to a natural alternative your body has to adjust. It's used to not being able to sweat and suddenly you are allowing it to, which may cause an increase in sweat and wetness. You may also experience some irritation or sensitivity as your body pushes all the built up toxins out of your clogged pores. These things didn't happen to me personally, but in my search to find a natural product that worked for me I read a lot about this "pit detox" period. 

You may have to test out a bunch of different deodorants to find the one that works for you. Everybody's body is different and products will work differently for different people. For example, the products that work for me contain baking soda and I love them, but some people experience irritation from baking soda so they would have to go for a baking soda free formula. Don't get frustrated, just do some research and ask around. You should be able to find the right product for you. 

The Natural Deodorants I'm Loving

I found two brands that worked for me. They both have different formulas and scents but contain similar types of ingredients. All of my favorites are pictures above. The Schmidt's Natural Deodorant Stick in Bergamot + Lime is easily at the top of the list. It has a really bright lime scent but isn't overpowering. My dog loves to lick lotions and creams when I put them on but the first time I used this she kept trying to lick it off. That was a first. The stick is a familiar form which makes for an effortless transition if you are just making the switch and it's easy to throw in your bag. I'll definitely be keeping this one on hand. I also tried this stick formula in the Cedarwood + Juniper scent which had a warm woodsy scent that can be great on a man or woman, but the Bergamont + Lime was my favorite of the two. The Schmidt's Natural Deodorant Jar in Ylang-Ylang + Calendula comes in a sustainable glass jar with a little spatula to help get the product out. You just take out a little bit warm it between your fingers and then apply. It has a really nice light floral scent that's great for spring. I found that both formulas worked equally as well and I find myself switching between the two depending on my mood for the day. Another one that came in a paste/jar form that I liked was the Primal Pit Paste in Coconut Lime. It smells like a coconut margarita. All of these products use baking soda to neutralize bacteria and arrowroot powder to absorb wetness and keep you dry. I've found that I've been sweating less and feeling more dry than I did even using a clinical strength conventional product and I couldn't be happier.

Let me know what natural deodorants you've tried and loved in the comments below!

Disclaimer: I was gifted some of these products in consideration for review, but all opinions are my own!

April Beauty Favorites

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

I have another round of beauty favorites for you today! These are all items that you can feel good about using and putting on your skin. Let me know if you have tried any of these what you're loving this month down in the comments!

ILIA Lip Products c/o
This is the first time I have tried anything from ILIA Beauty and now I can't wait to try more products. The red is actually a tinted lip conditioner in the shade Crimson & Clover. At first I was skeptical, I thought a tinted lip conditioner that is this bright red? It's going to be sheer and look weird. When I applied it, it was a little sheer but very pigmented and build-able. I put on a couple of layers and it looked just like a bright red lipstick. As you can see by the swatch on my hand above, it is very pigmented. It also leaves a nice stain on your lips and wears really well. It is 85% organic and contains ingredients that soothe and condition your lips. The pink is a lipstick in Neon Angel. The formula is creamy, pigmented, and wears well. This one is 72% organic. I want to try a bunch of other colors now as well as some of their other beauty products.

Heritage Store Rosewater & Glycerin
I haven't been able to stop spritzing this on my face. It smells just like roses, which is just heavenly. It's great for your skin; rosewater is really gentle and anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antibacterial. It's hydrating and feels so refreshing to spray on throughout the day. I've used it to set makeup as well and it works pretty great! The best part? It's under $10. You can pick it up here.

jane iredale Magic Mitt c/o
I have completely replaced chemical filled makeup wipes with this handy little mitt. You just slip it on your hand and run it under warm water and rub it over your face, and it gently takes off all your makeup. Then you wash it out with soap and hang to dry. It does an awesome job, I haven't even been needing to use coconut oil to take off my eye makeup. All the makeup washes out of it too, so it's not staining any washcloths. The mitt is made of knitted microfibers that are able to penetrate oil films without affecting the acid mantle (acidic film on the surface of skin that acts as a barrier to bacteria). It's great before cleansing your skin at night or in place of makeup removing towelettes when you're having a lazy night.

jane iredale Naturally Matte Eye Shadow Kit c/o
I've never been one to reach for colored eyeshadows. I think they can get really tacky looking, really fast. I always go for neutrals so I was excited to try out this palette filled with neutral matte shades. All of the colors are very creamy and blendable. They're perfect if you're looking for lighter makeup and going for no-makeup looks. You have been seeing this on me for the past month in outfit posts because I can't stop using it.

Disclaimer: I was gifted some of these products in consideration for review. However, all opinions are my own.

Casual Weekend Wear

Sunday, April 24, 2016

What a gorgeous weekend we had here in Massachusetts! It was perfect spring weather. I started planting herbs and moving around some of my plants for the season. My basil, mint, and cilantro are all planted. I also moved my lemon tree outside so it could get more sun. I still need to move my pineapple to a a bigger container and plant the new lemon seeds that I have germinating. I also started some of my spring cleaning. Every season I go through everything in my closet and if I haven't worn an item in over a year I put in a pile to either donate or give to friends. If I haven't worn something in a year, I'm probably not going to wear it. I find it helps my closet from getting too cluttered and makes room for new items. Let me know what you guys did this weekend in the comments below! 

What I'm Wearing: 

Top: Loft | Jeans: J.Crew Factory | Sneakers: SeaVees c/o | Earrings: Kendra Scott 

A Getaway at The White Hart Inn

Thursday, April 21, 2016

If you're following me on Snapchat you already got a glimpse at The White Hart Inn in Salisbury, Connecticut. The Inn which opened in 1806 as a pub is nestled in the Litchfield Hills. They're located just minutes from the Appalachian Trail, three big private schools, and many adorable little shops. After extensive renovations, the Inn closed in 2010 and stayed empty until May of 2014 when it opened under the new and current owners. 

I stayed in a suite which had a living room area, one and a half bathrooms, and a bedroom. The room was stocked with a mini fridge which had water as well as tea and juice from Harney & Sons. Interestingly enough, John Harney used to own the Inn and it's where he started brewing his craft tea in the basement. He served the tea to guests and sold it out of a general store, which was located in what is now the dining room. The full bathroom had a beautiful glass shower as well as a huge soaking tub and cozy white robes. I definitely took advantage of both. The bed was comfortable and the sheets where soft which provided for a wonderful night's sleep. 

The Inn in general was very well taken care of. Everything was spotless. The colonial feel of the The White Hart is both charming and appropriate but still feels fresh and modern. I can see why it is such a pillar in the community. They do a Christmas Tree Lighting out on the green in the front every year, Easter Egg Hunts, and host a dance for the Jane Lloyd Fund. The staff was incredibly helpful and attentive, making you feel right at home. I'd love to head back during the fall or when they're all decorated for the holidays.  

I had lunch and dinner in The Tap Room. For lunch I had the local greens which is served with a dijon-shallot vinaigrette and I added chicken for some protein. The salad was perfectly dressed, light and full of flavor. The chicken was was also tender and seasoned to perfection, and they didn't skimp on the portion. Overall, I was really impressed with their dedication to sourcing from local farms whenever possible. They seem to do a pretty good lunch business at The Tap Room. There were many locals who stopped in just for lunch and weren't staying at the Inn. 

For dinner I opted for the local cheese plate as an appetizer, which was absolutely delicious! I got it without the bread and just ate the fruit, nuts, and cheese. I also opted to sip on one of the Inn's perfectly balanced signature martinis. As a main course I got the fish tacos which was served with grilled tuna and a side of sweet potato chips.  Everything was delightfully fresh and light, yet satisfying. I wish I had more pictures for you of dinner but it was a bit dark in the dining room; which is wonderful for ambiance but not so great for taking photos, so a lot of them came out blurry. I was full so I didn't get a chance to try desert, but the choices sounded wonderful. Just like with lunch, the dining room was packed with locals who came in to enjoy the food. Even if you aren't staying at the Inn I would definitely drop in for meal if you're in the area.

Special thanks to everyone at the Inn for being such wonderful hosts!

The White Hart Inn
15 Under Mountain Road
Salisbury, CT 

That's A Wrap

Sunday, April 17, 2016

I'm giving you a break from stripes and gingham this week! It finally feels like spring; the flowers are slowly starting to bloom and I'm starting to incorporate brighter colors into my wardrobe. Naturally, with that comes the parade of Lilly dresses. I'm also a big fan of the wrap dress, so this one was a must-have for me. They are just one of those go-to dresses that I know look good on me and work for so many different occasions. I'd love to hear which wrap dresses you love down in the comments! 

Be sure you are following me on social media to keep up with my adventures in the Litchfield Hills of Connecticut this week! There are links in my sidebar. See you back here soon!

What I'm Wearing: 

Dress: Lilly Pulitzer | Hat: Tuckernuck | Shoes: Nine West (Similar

Easy Homemade Limoncello

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

10 organic lemons
1 750ml bottle of 100 proof vodka
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of water

For this recipe, I want to stress that you should use organic lemons. Since it is the actual peel of the lemons that you are going to soak, and that is where all the pesticides are. You want to keep that from leaching out into your liquor. Start by washing your lemons. Then, you either want to use a vegetable peeler or a microplane to remove all 10 of the lemon peels, getting as little of the pith as possible. 

Once you're done place the peels into a glass jar or container and pour in a full 750 ml bottle of 100 proof vodka. Store in a cool, dark place for at least 4 days and shake occasionally. I've read a lot of different directions for this and they all state a different amount of time to soak the peels. I'd say you can soak them for up to a month. The longer they soak the bolder the flavor will be, but most of the flavor is extracted during the first few days. You can just open it and test with a spoon to see if you think it's lemony enough. I soaked mine for 5 days. 

I suggest making the simple syrup to sweeten the Limoncello while the peels are soaking. This way it has time to cool completely. If you're not sure how to make simple syrup, it's really easy and you can read how to do that here. I used 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water. 

Once you're done soaking the peels, strain them out into another container using a coffee filter and a strainer. You may have to stir lightly every now and then if the liquid stops straining from too much of the peel being concentrated on the bottom of the filter. 

Now you're ready to bottle it! Pour the now strained liquid into whatever bottle you want to keep it in and add the simple syrup until it as as sweet as you desire. I'm not a fan of really sweet drinks so I didn't use all the syrup I made. I poured about half and then tasted it and added about another quarter of it until I thought it was sweet enough. Shake or stir and pop it in the fridge to chill. 

You can serve the Limoncello chilled over ice, or use it to mix cocktails with. Keep your eyes on the blog! I'll be using it to make an Italian margarita next month!

Easing Into Spring

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Well, we are finally having a break from all of this ran we've been having lately. It's still a bit cold so I've been slowly transitioning my wardrobe by wearing softer colors, less layers, and a couple of warmer weather items mixed in. For example, on Saturday I wore my Jack Rogers with jeans and a 3/4 sleeve shirt instead of sneakers or flats. However, I'm still anxiously awaiting the day I can pull out all my spring dresses. 

Two things I have been loving lately are this ring from Dualitas and this White Tea Lip Gloss from jane iredale. Dualitas make such unique pieces. Each one includes a stone that various cultures have believed hold numerous metaphysical properties, which have a positive effect on the wearer. This ring contains blue chalcedony, which is said to absorb negative energy and dissipate it. It was considered sacred by the Native Americans, and used to promote stability during their ceremonial activities. It is supposed to be a peace-making stone that encourages stillness and calm. The ring is designed so that the stone itself comes into contact with your skin, which is pretty cool. Now for the lipgloss; I love a good nude lip. I go through phases where I want to wear all bright colored lipsticks and then where I only want to use a nice nude gloss. I've had this one on repeat lately. It has such a great hint of color and leaves my lips really hydrated. It's also packed with antioxidants, which I love. 

Let me know how you are transitioning your wardrobe and what you're loving lately down in the comments!

 What I'm Wearing: 

Shirt: Saint James | Jeans: J.Crew | Sandals: Jack Rogers | Ring: Dualitas c/o | Lip Gloss: Jane Iredale c/o