Thursday, February 7, 2019

The Friday 5 [Safer Beauty Products]

You may already know this, but it’s worth saying again: What you put ON YOUR body is just as important as what you put IN YOUR body. Every single day, we’re exposed to all sorts of toxins – from the foods we eat and the water we drink to the air we breathe and more – so it’s important to make changes that are within our control, like the beauty products we choose to apply to our bodies. There are so many things we can’t control on a daily basis, but using safer beauty products is one that we can.

Obviously, striving for a more natural and non-toxic way of life is a personal decision, but, for me, it’s a no brainer when it comes to my daily beauty products. Face wash, deodorant, night cream, body lotion… definitely safer choices! Gel manicures, covering my grays via hair dye, and my beloved “magic hairspray“… well, they’re not entirely “safe,” but, hey, I’m not exposed to them all that often. You gotta pick your battles – and, honestly, cleaning up your beauty products even a little is better than nothing! That said, here are my top 5 safer beauty products that I use everyday!

Primally Pure Charcoal Deodorant – I’ve tried a lot of hippy-dippy deodorants over the years, and I must say that the charcoal deodorant from Primally Pure is by far the best. First off, it really works. I don’t get sweaty or smelly when I wear it. It also doesn’t stain your clothes, which I experienced using some other deodorants in the past. (I’m still annoyed.) The charcoal deodorant is made from super concentrated and pure ingredients, so a little goes a long way for odor protection. This also means that a single stick will last for a couple of months! The scent is really subtle. It’s actually kind of minty, but definitely light and fresh. I swear by this deodorant and recommend it to everyone! FYI: You can save 10% off your Primally Pure order with code CARROTSNCAKE!

Countercontrol Clear Pore Cleanser – This cleanser is semi-new to me, but it’s become a top favorite for sure! It deep-cleans without drying or striping the skin of moisture, which is so important for achieving a healthy balance when you have oily or blemish-prone skin. I just love the daily exfoliation. Its tiny jojoba beads gently slough away dead skin cells without irritating your skin. I use this cleanser everyday in the shower on my face as well as my upper body (chest, back, upper arms) to prevent breakouts.

Overnight Resurfacing Peel – I’ve professed my love for the Overnight Resurfacing Peel from Beautycounter at least a half dozen times now because it just so awesome. It’s truly made my skin glow and has helped big time with dullness, pigmentation, acne, pore size, and more. It’s definitely a product that I love and see myself using for a very long time. FYI: Beautycounter makes a travel-size Overnight Resurfacing Peel if you’re interested in giving it a try before committing to the full-size product.

Countermatch Recovery Sleeping Cream – I use this sleeping cream over the Overnight Resurfacing Peel every night before bed, and and I love how my skin looks in the morning! It really helps to replenish hydration and revitalize skin while you sleep. It’s made with Hyaluronic Acid, which is super effective for moisturizing without clogging pores.

Dew Skin – I’m not fancy when it comes to makeup, but I wear Dew Skin every single day of the year. I’m honestly obsessed with it. I love its light coverage and how moisturizing it is – most of the time, I don’t even wear a moisturizer with it. I just keep buying tubes of it, so I always have some on-hand. Thankfully, it’s 25% off as a consultant! 😉The Dew Skin also has SPF 20 in it, so it’s an awesome, all-in-one product! FYI: I wear shade No. 2.

Question of the Day

What are some of your favorite safer beauty products?

P.S. If you’re interested in Beautycounter, be sure to sign up for my Beautycounter newsletter to stay up-to-date about sales and promotions!

P.P.S. Totally unrelated, but I know some of you guys are fans of the protein muffins from Health Warrior, so just wanted to pass along this discount code. It’s good through Valentine’s Day – save 20% with code SUPERFOODLOVER20!

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Wedge Salad With Blue-Cheese Ranch Dressing

Salads can be as Big-Ass or as simple as mood and time dictate, but they always should be flavorful. We love this classic recipe for a quick side or (topped with some bacon crumbles) a light lunch or dinner. The best part…it’s made with staple ingredients that are easy to keep on hand.

Bright, colorful, crisp and rich, it’s a great choice for a midweek family supper or even an impromptu dinner party.

Servings: 4

Time In the Kitchen: 5 minutes



In a small mixing bowl, combine about 1 cup of Primal Kitchen Ranch Dressing with blue cheese. If you’d like a thicker dressing, add 1–2 tablespoons Primal Kitchen Mayo. Mix well and refrigerate.

Place iceberg wedges on 4 plates. Sprinkle evenly with tomatoes and green onions. Drizzle with blue-cheese ranch dressing.


The post Wedge Salad With Blue-Cheese Ranch Dressing appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

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What’s New In Fitness

I wrote about Birch’s fourth trimester, so here’s an update on mine from a fitness angle!

  • First sitting.
  • Then strolling.
  • Then walking.
  • Then power walking.
  • Then power walking uphill.
  • Then jogging VERY slowly.
  • Then interval jogging.
  • Then jogging normally.
  • Then lifting weights.
  • Then interval running.
  • Then going to plyo athletic conditioning.
  • Then sprinting.
  • Then playing indoor soccer.

I finally feel like my old self again! Translation: I don’t do any modifications during my workouts and don’t doubt myself when challenged to do something by a coach, whether on Aaptiv or in a workout class.

I’m not as fit as I was prior to getting pregnant and I’m not lifting as heavy as I was a few years ago, but I am getting there! My goal postpartum was to literally take it one day at a time, increasing my fitness level both slowly and naturally based on what I felt like doing at the time. I felt like doing a little bit more everyday, so that’s what I did. Usually the first time I did something new – from my first light jog to my first soccer game – I moved more gently than I would have in the past. My steps were softer, my plyo jump lands more graceful, and my soccer playing less aggressive. But by the second time I ran, hopped, and kicked I felt confident that my body would not break in two.

Knock on wood, my pelvic floor felt 100% normal at about the 4-6 week mark. What took longer to feel normal were my lower abs. The same ligaments that ached when I was pregnant twinged sometimes while working out. They were sore those first few jogs and runs. But my body now feels all back to normal. My abs are getting stronger again. I had my doctor feel them to check for any separation, and she said I had just a tiniest bit at my 6 week appointment, which was normal, but nothing that would restrict my movements.

I miss going to group ex classes, but I’ve loved going to Saturday morning plyo class (SO GLAD IT’S BACK after a two year hiatus!) Many of my friends and there, and thankfully Thomas is cool with that being my special hour of the week to slip away from the kiddos.

My favorite pre-workout snack is PB toast and coffee!

Having our home treadmill has been such a wonderful treat, especially since it is winter. Unfortunately though, the belt on it continues to stick, and running fast is quite a hazard since sometimes it stops so suddenly that I fly forward. I don’t feel comfortable going much faster than 7.5 mph. We tried to DIY fix it, and I suppose the next step is to contact Horizon about a replacement belt. Part of me just wants to get a new treadmill because I’ve been getting so much use out of it I think a new one is worth it, but the other part of me wonders if as soon as the weather is nice I’ll start running more outside with Birch in the stroller or solo after Thomas gets home from work and then by the time winter is here again I’ll be back at the gym more and putting Birch in KidsZone. So I just don’t know what to do! I KNOW I would use a new treadmill a lot if we got one, but I also don’t know if it’s really a necessity since I can walk and run slowly at least on the old one for now.

I have graduated from beginner to intermediate on Aaptiv and have been loving the workouts that combine cardio and strength. I did this one last week that was a 5K run combined with some strength moves in between 3 running sets. I really liked it! I like anything with intervals these days much more than a steady state.

So many of you have told me that you downloaded Aaptiv at my recommendation and you’re loving the workouts too. Send me screenshots of your favorites on Instagram too! There are so many I want to try, including some vinyasa yoga. I bought a set of 15 pound dumbbells to use for strength workouts, and I’d really like to have a 25-30 lb kettlebell too but they were really expensive when I priced them!

Speaking of yoga, I haven’t been back to hot yoga yet. It’s hard because I need childcare + a long period of time so it’s quite the commitment but I’ll get there sometime soon!

I can’t wait for spring weather and to be able to put Birch in the BOB stroller. When are they ready for that again? Six months? My BOB needs a good tune-up because it’s six years old, but man I loved the heck out of that thing with Mazen! I missed stroller running once Mazen grew out of it because it’s so nice to have a place for your phone, water bottle, and a storage area for a jacket if you de-layer.

The one thing I’m not quite ready for: running with both a stroller and Gus! How do you guys manage?

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