Protect Your Skin The Stylish Way: Cute Summer Hats!

We all know the importance of a good sunscreen during summer, but what if you want something more? Even the best sunscreens wear off after time and exposure to water and sweat. So why not invest in a cute, stylish hat this summer?

Not only do hats provide a physical barrier, shielding your face and shoulders from harmful rays, they also make a perfect addition to long dresses, casual outfits and swimwear alike. Check out some of our picks for perfect summer headwear.

LiViTY “High Grade Fedora”:  Handmade with sustainable ingredients, this hat is not only functional for a day at the beach, it’s unique and adorable. Bonus: It’s on sale for only $42!

Athleta Poipu Straw Hat: A cute, basic hat with an adjustable wire so you can bend the brim to whatever shape you want! At $29.99, you can’t go wrong with this one.

Justine Hats Wide Brimmed Straw Hat:  Unique, beautiful and classic, this handmade hat is sure to turn heads. While it’s a little pricey at $155, because it’s specially crafted by store owner Justine, you can be sure that you’ll be the only one at the pool with a hat this handsome.

Do you sport hats during the summer? Would you consider wearing any of these? Let us know in the comments!

Free Shipping On All Snowy Owl Cove Products!

In honor of our love for fall, we’re offering free shipping on all Snowy Owl Cove products in our Etsy store!

Stock up on everything from thick, creamy lotions to alleviate winter skin to gentle, soothing soaps to leave your skin clean, fresh, but never stripped of moisture. Keep in mind that all of our products are all natural and handmade in small batches with the utmost attention to the quality of ingredients. We hope you’ll take advantage of this deal and use our array of soaps, lotions and serums to keep your skin healthy & happy this fall!

Simply use the coupon code FREEFALLSHIPPING during checkout in our store to receive your order free of shipping charges anywhere in the domestic US!

Happy shopping, everyone!

Pantone’s Fall 2012 Color Report

Wondering which beauty products to invest in this fall? Pantone released its 2012 fall fashion color report, predicting which shades will likely trend this season in everything from eye shadow to handbag color. Including darker, more serious tones like “french roast,” this palate is also big on pops of color, such as “pink flambe” and “bright chartreuse.”

We’ve searched for our favorites of these shades in some of our go-to all natural brands and come up with a list of products that will help you stay on trend this fall (the all natural way!):

  • Tangerine Tango: Zoya’s all natural nail polish in “Paz” is a great way to add a spot of bright, attention-grabbing color to an otherwise neutral outfit. Vibrant and long-lasting, this nail color is also free of formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, camphor and dibutyl phthalate.
  • Rhapsody: Try Afterglow Cosmetic’s mineral eye shadow in “Velvet” for a subtle way to incorporate muted purple into your makeup routine. With certified organic ingredients including grape seed and rosemary extracts, these eye shadows are gentle on skin without sacrificing vibrant color.
  • Rose Smoke: For understated lips with a hint of rosiness, try Primitive Makeup’s lipstick in Sedona. Moisturizing and all natural, this product includes calendula, green tea and rose hips for a beautiful, conditioning treatment for your lips.
  • Pink Flambe: To wake up your complexion, try a dash of bright creme blush by Real Purity Cosmetics in “Pink.” Free of any FD&C dyes, oils, talc, alcohol, parabens, chemicals, this blush delivers easy-to-apply, creamy color to naturally brighten winter skin.

What’s your favorite Pantone color this fall? Do you plan on investing in fall colors? Let us know!

 

 

Frazzled From Summer Travel? Bounce Back with DIY Treatments

Via: thewanderingwanderluster.com

Via: thewanderingwanderluster.com

 

I just returned from a wonderful, fun-filled and entirely draining week in the beautiful city of Chicago. While I enjoy the kind of vacation involving beachside napping as much as the next person, I also love the hectic exhilaration of spending days on end sight-seeing, flavoring new foods, catching a live show and browsing hole-in-the-wall boutiques for the perfect surprise presents to bring friends back home.

We usually envision ourselves returning from vacation rejuvenated, ready to tackle the piles of work that have stacked up in our absence, with slightly fewer bags under our eyes. Of course, after running around the city under a blazing sun for a week, compiled with the joys of public transportation and navigating O’Hare airport, I’ve naturally returned more frazzled than before I left. And I’m just going to guess that it was some sort of city toxin/airplane dryness combination that has left my skin dull and hair frizzy.

Are you feeling the effects of mid-summer skin, hair and body stress? For me, it’s the perfect time to treat myself to a night of all-natural DIY beauty treatments (while doing loads and LOADS of post-trip laundry, of course). Here’s what’s on the menu:

1.  Carrot & Honey Face Mask

  • What it does: This mask is perfect for rejuvenating tired skin since carrots are full of antioxidants that help fight free radicals (think: city smog) that cause your skin to look less radiant, and honey is a great natural antibacterial cleanser and moisturizer. This easy recipe also includes witch hazel (tones and cleanses pores), cucumber juice (soothes irritation) and lemon juice (contains vitamin C; plumps skin), which all work together to help your skin rebound from post-travel dullness.
  • What you’ll need: 1/2 cup cooked mashed carrots, 1/4 cup honey, 1 teaspoon witch hazel, 1 tablespoon cucumber juice and 1 teaspoon lemon juice.
  • What you’ll need to do: Find the freshest ingredients possible; this will ensure that they’re full of the powerful antioxidants you’re after. Start by mashing the carrots (bring water to a boil, reduce heat and add carrots, and allow to cook covered for about 20 minutes or until they are tender; then simply mash the carrots into a smooth consistency). Next, combine ingredients in a bowl and mix together until consistency is thick and pasty. Massage and layer it onto skin and allow for it to sit for 25 minutes or longer. Rinse off and follow with a non-alcoholic toner (witch hazel is great as a toner by itself!) and apply a light moisturizer.

2.  Rosemary & Lemon Foot Soak

  • What it does: For all of us who strongly regret our footwear choices after extensive walking on trips, this soak can be a lifesaver. The rejuvenating properties of lemon, combined with the soothing and calming qualities of rosemary make for the perfect (and aromatic) foot soaking experience. This recipe also includes oat flour, which reduces inflammation, rashes, and works as a powerful moisturizer.
  • What you’ll need: 2 drops lemon essential oil, 2 drops rosemary essential oil, and 4 tablespoons organic oat flour. Note: Essential oils can be found at most whole grocery stores or health food stores.
  • What you’ll need to do: Add ingredients to a warm water foot bath. (It doesn’t have to be fancy! A small plastic tub would work). Soak feet for 15 to 20 minutes. For added moisture, rub on some hand or foot cream afterwards (or alternatively, have someone nice massage it in).

3.  Coconut & Avocado Hair Mask

  • What it does: Both coconut and avocado are full of fats needed by hair to look shiny, soft, bouncy and healthy. When applied from roots to ends, these ingredients can help smooth hair at the cuticle and repair the appearance of split ends.
  • What you’ll need: 1 large avocado, mashed; 1 tablespoon solid coconut oil (I get mine at Trader Joe’s); 1 tablespoon aloe juice; and 1 teaspoon jojoba oil.
  • What you’ll need to do: Combine ingredients with either a spoon, or for a smoother consistency, with a food processor. Apply to damp hair from roots to ends as evenly as possible and cover with a shower cap to avoid too much drip-age. Let sit on hair for 30-45 minutes and rinse, wash and style as usual.

4.  Vitamin E Cuticle Soak

  • What it does: This one is simple. As you probably know, vitamin E is fundamental in delivering smoother, healthier skin, and cuticles are no exception. Combined with a powerful hand lotion, your nails will be looking great in time for the weekend!
  • What you’ll need: A few drops of Vitamin E, which is available in most grocery stores.
  • What you’ll need to do:  Simply add a few teaspoons of the oil to a warm bowl of water and soak your hands for 10-15 minutes. Shea butter is also great for rough cuticles, so try finding a hand lotion containing this ingredient for maximum soothing power.

Happy summer travels, everyone! Do you have a trick to help you recharge after a tiring trip? Let us know!

10 Spa Treatments Made from Around Your Kitchen

Via: glamour.com

Via: glamour.com

Let’s face it, spa treatments can be expensive, time consuming and full of chemicals. You may even find that these work better than your favorite expensive brands. Get your girls together, and have a spa day this summer. These ten are made from around your kitchen at home:

BODY

Brown Sugar Lemony Body Scrub:

1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sea salt
2 tbsp coconut oil or olive oil
1 tbsp of honey
2 tbsp of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp of your favorite essential oil (bergamot for energy, eucalyptus or spearmint for stress relief and lavender or jasmine for something relaxation)
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl until it turns into a paste
Apply to moist skin in circular motion using your fingertips to help skin cells slough off faster
Rinse off with warm water
Apply your favorite moisturizer
Results: smooth, soft glowing skin.

Milk Foot Soak:

Add 4 cups of warmed whole milk
2 tablespoons of Epsom Salt and 6 drops of your favorite essential oil
Soak for 20 minutes.
Use the Brown Sugar Lemony Body Scrub to remove dead skin on feet.

Invigorating Coffee Scrub:
Coffee contains Magnesium and Vitamin E. It also acts as an antibacterial, exfoliating and stimulating agent:

Brew a fresh pot of coffee
3 tablespoons of the fresh grounds
1 tablespoon of salt
Mix in a bowl
Scrub mixture over body within 20 minutes of brewing (before oxidation occurs)

HAIR

Avocado Conditioning Mask:

Mash an avocado (two for long hair) in a bowl with a fork until it is a thick, rich paste
Add a couple of drops of your favorite essential oil for fragrance (optional)
Spread the paste on the hair from the root to the ends
Leave on for 20 minutes
shampoo out and rinse out
Results: shiny, smooth, stronger, moisturized hair and added vitality to dull, dry hair.

Olive Oil Deep Hair Conditioning Mask:

Beat two eggs (three for long hair)
Add in three tablespoons of olive oil
Add your favorite essential oils for fragrance (optional.)
Apply a liberal amount to hair from root to tip
Wrap hair in warm towel and rest for about 30 minutes
After you rinse, you will notice how soft, shiny and manageable your hair will be
How Often? Do once a month (twice for dry hair)

Natural Blonde Highlights:
For natural blonde highlights:

Add 1/4-cup lemon juice (natural bleach) to 3/4-cup water and
Rinse your hair with the mixture
Apply a small amount of leave-in conditioner
Sit in the sun until your hair dries
For maximum effect: repeat once daily for up to a week.

TEETH

Strawberry Bleach Mask:
This natural mixture will remove any stains and discoloration on your teeth:

Crush one ripe strawberry
Mix 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
Apply the mixture on teeth with toothbrush,  let it set for 5 minutes
Brush with your regular toothpaste
How Often: Once a week.

FACE

Honey Oats Face Scrub:

Combine 1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon finely ground almonds
2 tablespoons dry oatmeal and some lemon juice (or yogurt to a luxurious and exfoliating facial scrub)
Massage mixture gently onto face
Rinse with warm water.
Afterwards: Use your favorite moisturizer.

Yogurt & Honey Mask:
This mixture moisturizes, hydrates and soothes the skin. Honey can be used as a minor acne treatment:

Mix 1-part plain yogurt and 1-part honey
Apply to clean, moist face
Let it set for 10-15 minutes
Rinse well with warm water.

Banana Facial Cream:

Mash 1/2 of a ripe banana until creamy
Apply on face – leave for 15-20 minutes.
Rinse with warm water and cold water to close pores
Pat dry

What My Skin Care Product Addiction Has Taught Me

beauty

Cleaning out my bathroom cabinet last night, I was reminded of one of the irrefutable truths of my life thus far: I own way too many products. Gels, serums, lotions and creams, all (sometimes deceptively) in polished packaging suggesting their uncanny abilities to make my skin smoother, clearer, more even, more beautiful.

Of course, most products, however honest their intentions, don’t exactly live up to their word, which leaves me on a constant search for what, in fact, just works. The bright side is that being a sucker for skin products hasn’t been entirely futile; I’ve learned a few truths that generally ring true in the world of skin care.

1. Trendy, complicated-looking products do not necessarily equal effective products. Some of the most tried and true products I use are packaged simply in utilitarian-style bottles with easy-to-understand, honest descriptions. Here is a great database to help you know what to look for on the label of bottle before you purchase it.

2. Check for long, hard-to-read ingredient lists. You wouldn’t pour complicated-sounding chemicals in tonight’s casserole, so why allow them to be absorbed into your system through your skin care products? Look for all natural oils and butters instead of a plethora of 23-letter words. Check out this comprehensive list of chemical ingredients in cosmetics to find out what they really mean and what they do for your skin.

3. Try supporting local business. Not getting the results you were hoping for from commercially made products? Consider trying a local company with lower production levels. Not only will you get to support your local economy, but you may also find that a smaller company puts more care, energy and attention into their products.

4. Research natural ingredients and know what you’re looking for. Looking for relief from dry, flaky skin? You may want to look for avocado oil in a moisturizer. Combating an oily complexion? Hazelnut oil can serve as a great astringent in a facial cleanser. The more you know, the less lost you will feel looking at ingredient lists. Check here for comedogenic ratings of botanical oils so you know which ones are best for your skin type.

5. Keep it simple. Don’t let your bathroom cabinet devolve into mine. When you find products you like, stick to them. And chances are that the products that are most effective will be the straight-forward, all natural real deals that simply deliver results.

Do you believe in using natural products? What works best on your skin? Let us know in the comments!

Pamper Your Skin From Within

Via: radiantpeach.com

Via: radiantpeach.com

Like any other organ of your body, your skin is affected by the nutrients you feed it through diet. While topical treatments can help address the symptoms of malnourished complexions, the best way to renew your skin is by providing it with the essential ingredients it needs to heal, rebuild and refresh itself from the inside out.

As you’ve heard time and time again, a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains goes a far way in keeping your body healthy and skin luminous. But which items are specifically known to enrich skin? Check out our list of skin-healthy (and delicious!) foods to add to your next grocery list:

  • Oily Fish. Think mackerel, salmon, albacore tuna, herring, lake trout, flounder and sardines. These fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential to heart health and brain function, but which also help reduce dry and flaky skin conditions, such as acne and psoriasis.
  • Whole Grains. Loaded with antioxidants and fiber, whole grains work to keep your body full and satisfied, while also providing protection against free radicals that cause blemishes in skin. As an added benefit, these grains also stabilize blood sugarand prevent insulin spikes. For a change from traditional wheat, try power foods quinoa and millet.
  • Leafy Greens. Including green vegetables such as spinach, kale and broccoli, leafy greens are packed with inflammation-fighting nutrients and antioxidants that help ward off environmental irritations.
  • Purple and Deep Red Fruits and Veggies. While it might sound strange, studies have shown that these highly pigmented foods are high in antioxidants and help maintain blood flow to skin, which promotes optimal cell turnover, keeping pores clear. These foods include acai, pomegranates, purple carrots, black grapes and beets.
  • Green Tea. Containing high levels of the powerful antioxidant catechin EGCG, green tea is a very effective anti-inflammatory and works to keep your skin clean and clear. Just be sure to check labels on bottled tea, as it can often contain high levels of added sugar (or just try brewing your own!)

Dry Hair? Moisturize It With Natural Oils!

 

Via: letsridof.com

Via: letsridof.com

All my extensive complaining about hot, humid weather and days of blistering heat aside, I can honestly say that I love summer. I spend approximately 8 months of the year awaiting Memorial Day weekend, the opening of the pool and Friday afternoons spent driving east towards the coast.
Along with time spent in the sun and water, however, often comes the unpleasant side effect of dry, brittle, frizzy hair. How can you keep your hair manageable in the summer months without resorting to products packed with potentially harmful chemicals? You might be surprised at how simple, affordable oils can work wonders for locking in moisture in hair and keeping it soft and manageable.
Try the following natural ingredients to find out which oil is most suitable for your hair type:

  • Olive Oil. For dry, brittle hair, this everyday oil can be a lifesaver. Try heating about 1/2 cup (be careful not to overheat it and burn yourself!) and applying it liberally all over hair. To lock the moisture in, keep the oil in your hair for about 45 minutes by covering it with a shower cap or plastic grocery bag. Then simply rinse and shampoo your hair as usual.
  • Argan Oil. A natural antioxidant, this oil is rich in vitamins A and E, as well as omega-6 and omega-9 essential fatty acids, which can revitalize parched hair on contact. To use, simply rub a few drops into towel dried hair, concentrating on the ends, and style hair as usual.
  • Jojoba Oil. Packed with vitamins and minerals, this oil closely replicates skin’s natural lubricating medium, making it perfect as a moisturizer for your scalp and hair. Try adding several drops to your conditioner or use alone to soothe dry hair.
  • Macadamia Nut Oil. Light and non-greasy, macadamia nut oil easily absorbs into your scalp and hair, delivering omega-7 and vitamins A and E. To reap the benefits of the ultra-moisturizing oil, massage a tablespoon into hair, then wrap hair in a warm towel. Rinse and lightly condition hair and style as usual.