Photos by  Elena Eshleman

Photos by Elena Eshleman

So I can be a bit fussy, about what I eat, where I work out, etc. Please note, I said fussy and not high maintenance. Essentially, I am not embarrassed to make 3 modifications to a menu item even at the risk of the waiter rolling his eyes at me (and embarrassing who I'm with). I am cautious and contentious about the kind of exercise that I do because I know this bod needs to last me another 55 years. That is, unless they figure out a way to turn us into robots by then (I'd like to be a hot robot if I'm given the option to choose). So where does this leave the biggest organ on my body...my skin? Wow! Turns out my skin has been neglected and given the short end of the stick. I actually feel like I owe my skin an apology for slathering on tons of stuff over the past few decades (yep that's how old I am and how young I started) without even questioning its origin and affects. Shame. On. Me. Not too long ago, I watched a documentary called the Human Experiment. It was around the time I became obsessed with documentaries that would put the fear of god into me. After I watched all of the food ones that would make me want to eat grass for the rest of my days, I figured...eh what the heck. Let's see what else I should not be consuming. That was the beginning of what I'd like to call my "awakening". Before I knew it, I threw out endless products that I clean with, switched to aluminum free deodorant and I started to really question "what is better beauty".  In a nutshell, the US has not passes a law to regulate the safety of personal care products since 1938. Imagine a current world where no laws have been passed since 1938 to cause any reform or improvement. What kind of world would we live in today? I can think of hundreds of things that would be wrong with today's society if that were the case. So why is the personal care industry stuck in the past when we have evolved significantly since? That would mean we have learned nothing since 1938, imagine that? Also, only 10% of chemicals in personal care products have safety data attached to them. Imagine someone told you that about the food you eat or feed your children? This makes it no different. Last thought I'll leave you with, the EU has restricted 1,300 ingredients and we have restricted 11. I am not a mathematician but that seems pretty off to me. Overall, as I mentioned, I care to know more about what I use and what I do and how that affects me. I am by no means perfect and I understand I can't live in a bubble but I can in fact make small and informed changes in my life. I will work on controlling the variables that I can. Full disclosure, I became a Beautycounter Consultant so I can enrich my life and help others make better beauty decisions. If there is anything you'd like to try from the below, you can find my page (and badass picture) here. This is also a mission super close to my heart, Beautycounter is fighting for reform and going straight to Congress for those changes. We all need to play our role to empower ourselves, one decision and one product at a time.

On the flip side, I am a taurus to the T. I love luxury and I will not compromise that even while I aim to be more contentious of what I consume. I want to share with you a few products that are luxury approved by me that will be kind to your skin, appealing to your senses and mindful of your health. You can totes have a spa day at home with these products. I just tried Zeel for the first time and I am obsessed. If you have never used them, you can use promo code: RELAX and save $25 off your first massage like I did! For an at home spa day, I would recommend, starting with a Zeel massage and then using some or all of these products for the finishing touches. Have a robe handy, some soothing music, light a few candles and grab a delicious read. 

1. Start with a nice and clean canvas. I love the Counter Time Nourishing Cleansing Balm. It feels like a spa day every day when I use this product. I like to compare the consistency to coconut oil. You apply this on to dry skin and massage it in. You then use the wash cloth it comes with and remove it with warm water and then rinse it off with cold water. I am falling asleep from being so relaxed as I type this. If you have oily skin, I would not recommend this product.

2. Tata Harper's Resurfacing Mask this product does in fact provide an instant glow. I use it before my shoots and you need only 10 to 30 minutes to see amazing results. You can apply it and multi-task around the house or indulge in a trashy gossip magazine like I would. I love how this brand grows its own ingredients and manufactures the products. They also give back to the planet with their renewable mission.

3. I have pretty dry skin so I love a face oil like no one else. A massage, daily environmental stressors or even a kick ass work out will dry you up. A face oil will restore all of that. These come in three scents and from what I have seen, I can't really recommend one specifically as scent is so personal. I would check these out and see which generally appeals to you most. They come in Calendula (sensitive skin), Jasmine (dry or mature skin) and Ylang, Ylang and Wild Chamomile.

4. Scrub it off. I love peeling off the layers. A good scrub gets rid of the old and let's in the new. Full disclosure, I accidentally ate some of this and it was pretty tasty but I don't recommend that. It's a sugar scrub and I am in fact a sugar junkie (I know, sugar isn't great for you but I need to conquer the world in baby steps).

5. Lastly, top it off with an oil party. If you just had a massage, you are no stranger to oil by now. After a scrub, oil will seep in to your skin and hydrate you very, very well. I would apply this generously on to the body and put that robe back on. If you are putting on some clothes, give it a few minutes to sink into your skin. No clothes, no problem. Get on the couch with a book or Downton Abby (my current poison) but for goodness sakes, at least wear a robe.

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