Monday, 31 January 2011

Tempted by a Bed of Nails? Introducing the Yantra Mat (with carry bag).

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Rating: 5/5, available from Detox your World (£40.75 + p&p), Amazon (£35.05 inc. super saver delivery), Holland and Barrett (£40.99 inc. p &p. They also have a buy one get one half price promo on at the moment!).

Acupressure is a technique derived from Traditional Chinese Medicine's acupuncture, in which pressure is applied to acupuncture points across the body using the hands, feet, various gadgets and, of course, the Yantra Mat.

According to the manufacturers the yantra mat can help to increase energy and general wellbeing, aid sleep and relieve muscle tension, headaches, back or neck pain. Each mat consists of 8,820 acupressure contact points (which are on the white discs in the image above) that provide equal pressure on each point.

The Yantra Mat can be used in a multitude of positions; on your back, your stomach, it can be placed on a chair and you can even roll it up and use it as a pillow (on the side of your face). Apparently some people feel some discomfort when they first use it, we didn't feel discomfort but we did follow the instructions and used a light cotton top for the first 4 days of use.

The Yantra Mat is made of 100% cotton and the spiked flowers/white discs are made of non-toxic ABS plastic. To store the mat you are advised to roll it up and keep it in a safe, dry place, out of reach of children.
There is a removable foam pad inside, designed so you can take the mat with you on your travels and so it can be hand-washed.

image borrowed from

What we found:
This mat has been a godsend over the past few weeks, it also works wonders on a tense body and is amazing for relaxing. We've found that we feel most energised when we stand (either barefoot or wearing socks.) on the mat and gently rock back and forth for 10 minutes.
Putting 20 minutes or more aside each day for a bit of relaxing isn't something we can say no to. Em has even fallen asleep on it. All in all we most definitely recommend it!!
Have you used an acupressure mat before? what did you think? Let us know in the comments!

Coping with Depression in the Family

I know what you may be thinking; Where have you been? Well, I wasn't on holiday nor was I abducted by aliens. One of my close relatives suffers with depression and they refuse to acknowledge it, much to the anguish of those who are closest to them. The past week has been spent fretting about, feeding and supporting my family. Not to mention the family member in question.

Em and L have both been incredibly supportive, but we agreed that this blog is a group blog. We sit around the computer every night and write together, we're a little family and we do our best to support each other, unfortunately we couldn't get to the blog last week and for that we are very sorry! We will be doubling up our posts (at least!) for this week.

Despite all of the happenings, it has made us reflect on depression and the amount of people across the world who have experience of dealing with an ill family member or friend and how it's really hard to take a step back and consider how to support yourself.

So, here are a few of our tips:

#1: Make sure that you are taking care of yourself. Don't skip meals, your usual schedule might go out of the window but that does not mean that you don't need fuel. Would you drive to work with an empty or near-empty gas tank? No. The same goes for your tummy!

#2: Don't feel guilty for taking time out. If you're not strong enough to carry yourself through the day then you can't expect yourself to have the fortitude to do that for another person.

#3: Smile. It sounds simple but if you take a look around the next time you walk through your shopping centre or mall then you'll notice that there aren't many folk smiling back at you. Our yoga teacher told us that she smiles to practice contentment and that this is her best coping strategy because it really does relax you. Give it a go, at first it might seem tiresome but trust us; that tip has got us through many a stressful situation!

#4: Reconnect. Call your friends and meet up for a hot drink and a treat. There is nothing like a chat over a warm cup of tea with a good friend to lift your spirits

#5: Meditate. It's not limited to sitting in the lotus position and chanting (but if that's what you are happy doing, then by all means strike a pose!), meditation is a relaxation technique. If you are happier taking a bath, doing some visualisation or even drawing then do so. Bottom line is that you need a way to let it out and ground yourself.

#6: Exercise. Not only does exercise release endorphins (the feel good factor) but it also energises you which strengthens and grounds you.

All it takes is a few minutes, and you'll find that you are of better use to those around you and in a better state if you give yourself that teeny bit of time.

So, you ask, what about encouraging a relative or friend to see the doctor? Well, we have struggled with that one. In the end, it took 4 additional relatives, a lot of talking, a lot of stress and a refusal to supply the relative in question with any caffeine. Long story short is that they have gone to the doctor, who has asked that a relative attend next time to help explain symptomatology further.

If you have any tips that have helped you through a similar situations then please leave them in the comments section. In words similar to a certain supermarket; every bit helps.

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Laverstoke Park Farm now offering Mail order Buffalo Dairy Products!

For the dairy free, health conscious and foodies among us these little blessings are thoroughly enjoyed! Unfortunately this offer isn't open to our International readers, but if you know of stockists in your part of the world leave a note in the comments!

Buffalo milk is a good source of Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Phosphorus, Riboflavin, Vitamin A, C, B12 and Thiamin. It also contains Copper, Folate, Iron, Manganese, Niacin, Pantothenic Acid, Sodium, Vitamin B6 and Zinc in small amounts. It is higher in protein than cow's milk, and some people have drank it to treat eczema and psoriasis. We've not tried it yet, but when we do we will post a review in light speed!
From what we've read, buffalo's milk has met mixed reviews among people with lactose intolerance.

Laverstoke Park Farm are currently offering 2 750ml cartons for £3.98, but they do have a minimum order cost of £30. They also sell organic, free-range, grass-fed meats (including buffalo), Buffalo ice cream (they currently offer 16 different flavours, but these ice creams are made using jersey cream and sugar so it's unsuitable for anyone with lactose intolerance/allergy, diabetes and us), Buffalo milk chocolate (again, using sugar so avoid if you are sugar free!), Buffalo mozzarella, Buffalo Ricotta, Buffalo Custard and Buffalo fudge amongst other things!

Thanks for reading!

Friday, 21 January 2011

Online Store Review # 4: Speciality farm foods

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Rating: 5/5

Speciality Farm Foods is a small family business that began in 2007, they have since moved into an industrial unit to allow for expansion. They work with passionate farmers and artisans to supply high quality, organic, sustainable ingredients from around the world. They are currently developing their own range of traditional farm foods in the UK and have plans to open a flour mill, bakery and kitchen.

Their packaging policy is such that ingredients should be packaged using sturdy solutions. However, they've not yet found anything sturdier than a tin caddy or glass jar, for this reason most of their ingredients can be purchased loose from the site and will be in paper and foil bags.

According to their about us page they are currently looking for operations, kitchen, bakery, mill and sales staff. If you have a passion for those jobs then get in touch with Speciality farm foods!

So, let's get on to what they stock; raw cashew nuts, Mexican vanilla & vanilla extract, raw cacao products ( whole kernels, nibs, powder & butter), cacao & cashew clusters, cacao nib clusters, high quality teas and coffees (including rare teas), Bali beach salt, Himalayan salt, Tibetan salt, Tibetan salt diamonds, a variety of Indonesian peppers, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oils, Turkish kachar honey, handmade coconut palm sugar, infused coconut palm sugar, Vermont maple syrup, Vermont maple sugar, cardamom, nutmeg, coriander seeds, wild cinnamon, tamarind (in shell), along with other spices and culinary tools.


We are IN LOVE with this store, if you love food then you should be too! But before we get to the food let's get down to the basics; the prices are reasonable, they have seasonal offers (we'll list the current ones at the bottom of this post), their delivery rate is super fast, they are cheaper than specialist raw shops for most items, and everything is really high quality.

So, what have we tried? The Bali beach pyramid crystal sea salts that they stock are delicious and more than worth giving a go, the handmade coconut palm sugar is the best quality palm sugar that we've come across in the UK, the Indonesian long peppercorns are brilliant and add a really intense flavour to your food, the jasmine honey pearl green tea (also known as jasmine dragon pearls) are a delight - they're softly scented, and have a delicate flavour that really helps you unwind during or after a long stressful day, and finally, the Indonesian raw cashews are the most yummy, buttery cashews that we have ever tasted (luckily for you they are on offer right now!).

This year we aim to give the maple sugar and maple syrup, Mexican vanilla, extra virgin olive oil and wild cinnamon a go (we'll post a review when we do!)

Check the store out here and let us know what you think!

Current offers:
1kg Indonesian raw cashews for £15 (usual price £30)
5 Litres of Unfiltered, Organic, Extra Virgin Olive Oil for £56.07 (usual price £75.96)
Handwoven Mexican Vanilla Sculpture for £3.88 (usual price £7.75)
Handmade rare Tea Caddy for £21 (usual price £30).
our favourite product is: 2kg tub of handmade coconut palm sugar for £30. Yes, we do know that it sounds like a lot to spend on sugar, but we only use 40g per cake and it's suitable for Em - we'll do a post on that later!
Hope you've had a lovely day,

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Murumuru Butter For Your Hair and Skin Review

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Rating: 5/5, available from Sheabutter cottage with prices starting from £5.85 (+ p&p).

Murumuru butter is derived from the seeds of a palm tree native to the Amazon Rainforest in Brazil. Murumuru butter is a fatty solid, that is white to yellow in colour. It has a very distinctive smell that may prove to be too overpowering for some people. An easy way to get around this is to combine it with a few drops of essential oils and/or coconut oil. One quick google search reveals a bunch of posts listing the same things; Murumuru butter is high in vitamin A, has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, and is also rich in oleic and lineleic oils.

Oleic acid (also known as vitamin K) is an omega-9 essential fatty acid that has been shown to be an excellent emollient, which moisturises and softens the skin while aiding moisture retention. It also permeates the skin deeply, enhancing the effects of collagen and elastin, repairing damage caused by dryness, sun exposure, stress and other factors. It helps to restore skin elasticity, skin texture and can reduce and even eliminate fine lines. Oleic acid has a similar effect on the hair, penetrating the hair shaft and improving moisture retention. Regular application can even help hair grow thicker and stronger, and can help make curls more manageable.

Linoleic acid is an omega 6 essential fatty acid that is also an emollient and has been found to reduce the size of spots in a clinical setting.
Because of these qualities, murumuru butter helps to moisturize the hair and skin, improve hair and skin texture while maintaining moisture retention. It's also supposed to give the hair a glossy sheen!

I am a firm believer in using oils as a pre-shampoo treat for the hair so when I saw this at Sheabutter cottage I had to try some. As always, Sheabutter Cottage source their products responsibly; their murumuru butter is bought directly from remote indigenous communities throughout the Amazon River basin area. Which helps to preserve the natural habitat and directly improves local economic conditions and sustainability.

The Review

The smell of this butter proved to be too much for us, so we combined it with coconut oil, melted it together in a bain-maire and now we have it on hand for our hair and skin needs.

We can say with certainty that it has improved our skin condition, hair condition and it really does make your hair glossy. It absorbs into the skin quickly and has improved skin texture, it hasn't shown L much help in the way of her dry patches but she loves it as an all-purpose body conditioner.

Have you ever used murumuru butter? what did you think?
Thanks so much for stopping by!

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Alternatives to sugar #1: Mesquite

Hi guys,

Before we begin we want you all to know that while very interested in nutrition we are not qualified nutritionists so, as with all of our food posts, we would advise you to research thoroughly and consult your health practitioner before making any changes to your diet.

Welcome to the first of our installments discussing alternatives to sugar! We all know that it's not the best thing for us; it rates at 100 on the Glycemic Index which means that it will elevate your blood sugar levels quickly, and this stimulates insulin production in the pancreas (which is the body's way of reducing blood sugar levels).

Everyone knows that sugar isn't our best friend, it can cause insulin resistance, can lead to weight gain as well as a whole host of other things. For an informative read about the effects of sugar on your health take a look at this post over at Mark's Daily Apple.

As you might know we are sugar free, Em has type 2 diabetes and L and I decided to cut sugar out entirely in support of her health and ours. It occurred to us the other day that it has taken a long while to amass the information that we've stumbled across, so we thought that we'd dedicate one post to each of the options that we've found. We don't use sweeteners everyday, but when we do we have a number of options to choose from and we'd really like to share them with you :)

If any of you know of any sweeteners that are suitable for diabetics and/or sweeteners that you use as an alternative to sugar please let us know in the comments.

Mesquite Powder

Ranking at approximately 25, on the Glycemic Index, this powder is officially Low GI and high in protein. It is also a good source of lysine, calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc and fibre.
It's made by grinding mesquite pods, legumes, which are native to Southwest America and Mexico.

Image borrowed from

In addition to it's nutritonal value, mesquite also acts as a flavour enhancer. It can be used in raw and cooked meals, and is suited to both sweet and savoury dishes when mixed with the right spices.
On top of that it can be used as a flour replacement (up to 35% of the flour required can be substituted with mesquite, we've mixed it with almond flour, coconut flour, rice flour and gram flour each with good results).

Some people say it tastes like a cross between carob and caramel, some say it's smoky and sweet, we say it's malty and not overly sweet. Because of this it lends itself to all sorts of spice mixes. One of our favourites is a paprika, salt and mesquite combo, it sounds simple but makes a delicious marinade for both raw and cooked dishes.

The sweetness in mesquite is a result of fructose, which  is metabolised in the liver and therefore does not require insulin for metabolism. A number of sites have mentioned that it can stabilise blood sugar levels but we can't find any reference for that finding, however the fact that it is low GI and is high in fibre means that it is digested slowly which may well prevent spikes in blood sugar. Anecdotally speaking, em has had no trouble with mesquite, but we do combine it with other high fibre and/or high protein foods.

In addition to this, the marketing of mesquite products provide an economical and environmental sustainable alternative to deforestation. It's an all round feel good sweetener!

Mesquite powder can be bought from Detox your world (100g upwards from £2.75 + p&p), Raw living ( 250g upwards from £4.61 + p&p), Vivapure (500g upwards from £9.95 + p&p), and The fresh network (100g upwards from £2.45 +p&p).
If anyone knows of any U.S. suppliers please let us know!

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Evolve Multiprotein shampoo Review & Discuss

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Rating: 2.5/5, available in 200 ml bottles from Lovelula for £9.99 (+ p&p),feelunique for £9.99/$17.08 (including worldwide delivery).
A note from us: We were worried about this post because some people turn on you the moment you bring up the fact that just maybe a product isn't what you thought it was. So in case you feel like turning on us; this is just our opinion, if you use it and you love it then we are happy. But we think that it's only fair that we all know what we're getting ourselves into :)
We're not too sure about the shampoo, it gets the job done and we have used it from time to time but as far as chemical free shampoos sits close to the boundary. Which side you ask?...yeah, we're not that sure.
Let's take a closer look at the ingredients:
Cocamidopropyl Betaine is a semi-synthetic surfactant (a foaming agent) derived from coconut oil and dimethylaminopropylamine (also known as DMAPA). It has antibiotic and antistatic properties, but it's been associated with irritation and allergic contact dermatitis, but sources tell us that those reactions are likely to be a result of the DMAPA itself.
So here it is, your quick fire guide to the health hazards involved with DMAPA;
  1. It is corrosive to the skin and eyes, and is likely to cause sensitization by skin contact.
  2. It is a suspected environmental toxin and is toxic to aquatic species.
  3. Exposure throughout the day can cause a decrease in lung functioning.
  4. It's not mutagenic and is therefore not a carcinogen.
  5. It has been tested on animals and, while we know that it's pretty hard to come across ingredients that haven't been tested on animals, we also know that some folk don't want to be anywhere near an ingredient that has been.
  6. For an extensive report about DMAPA click here and you will be taken to the National Cancer institute's extensive report.
Sodium Coco Sulfate. Huh, have we met before? because your lathery action makes you seem oh so familar...and that name, it's like....familiar.... Of course it's familiar ladies and gentlemen, sodium coco sulfate is merely a less refined version of sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate. You don't foam as well and because you are derived from coconut oil and your quality depends on crop quality, but still, you are an irritant. Your not as irritating as your more refined cousins, and you're not carcinogenic, but you still are irritating.

Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein is a film-forming agent that retains water, promotes healing and improves hair manageability, but it can cause contact dermatitis.

Gluconolactone is a polyhydroxic acid that chelates metals and might even fight free radicals, protecting skin from UV damage. It may also help rosacea symptoms and is gentle enough for sensitive skin.
In vitro animal testing research has shown mutation and it is suggested that pregnant women consult their doctor before using products containing it, other animal studies have shown brain, nervous system or behavioural effects at high doses.
However, one study found that it has anti-inflammatory and healing properties when applied topically. (Annals of Emergency Medicine, July 1994, pages 9–13).

Phospholipids are naturally derived and seems to be one of the best things in this shampoo! Phospholipids support skin physiology and contain essential nutrition for the body. For an in depth review of phospolipids click here and for one study abstract click here.

Lauryl glucoside is a sugar and lipid based surfactant that we cannot find any research for, according the the cosmetics database there are no hazards associated with it.

Mannitol is a naturally derived alcohol and humectant ( i.e. it preserves moisture content). Again, we've been unable to find much research on mannitol, all we know is that it is not carcinogenic.

Citric acid is an Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) that can be derived from fruits (citrus fruits, apples, berries) and fermented sugar solutions. It's used as a preservative and to control the ph balance, it is also supposed to have antioxidant and toning properties. High levels of exposure can cause mild skin and eye irritations and may increase photosensitivity. Although allergic reactions to citric acids are rare they can occur.

Sodium Benzoate  (also known as E211) is found in apples, cinnamon, cranberries, plums, prunes and ripe cloves. It acts as a preservative and fragrance ingredient. Although it is supposed to be a low hazard ingredient there are concerns regarding cancer, developmental and reproductive toxicity, organ system toxicity, irritation and biochemical cellular changes as an ingredient in cosmetics and personal care products. On top of that it has mutagenic effects and is not suitable for pregnant women.
Other studies have found that Sodium Benzoate can damage DNA by attacking cells mitochondria, and this can lead to malfunction and disease because mitochondria are vital to cell functioning. As a result it has been linked to a variety of neurodegenerative diseases. Hmm....not so sure about the low hazard status.


To be honest, I don't even understand why Lovelula stock this item given that they have a strict policy about the ingredients in their products, they even list [allergens] as one of the ingredients on the product page. In "are natural brands really that natural?" Love from Eden was discussing her shock about naturisimo stocking something packed with chemicals, and I've got to say that I am as surprised with love lula about this shampoo.
Evolve multiprotein shampoo notches up quite a few serious health and environment concerns. although there are naturally derived products in there they have been messed with, for a better explanation of what we're trying to say here go to this article by sarma melngailis

Before the research, I was going to give this product a higher rating...the packaging is made from recycled milk bottles and the product is supposed to be organic. The promotional literature says;

Organic Food Based Ingredients - Certified Organic products based on the principle that whatever goes on your skin should be good enough to eat.

...But we wouldn't eat cocamidopropyl betaine or sodium coco sulfate, other products like dr alkaitis and bee yummy are truer to that principle and this shampoo just doesn't make the mark. It has a nice effect on your hair and despite all of the irritant warnings Em and her sensitive skin has got along with it just fine. But the same could be said for Dove shampoo.

Ingredients: Water, Aloe Vera leaf juice, Cocamidopropyl betaine, Sodium coco sulfate, Hydrolyzed wheat protein, Gluconolactone, Glycerin, Calcium gluconate, parfum (natural fragrance), Sunflower seed oil, Sweet almond protein, Phospholipids, Lauryl glucoside, Mannitol, Citric acid, Sodium benzoate.

Thanks for reading guys!
If you feel like being a beauty P.I.  here are some good resources for beauty product investigation:

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Simply Divine Botanicals Face the Day & Plump Up the Volume Review

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Rating: 3/5, Face the Day serum available from Glowgetter for £55 (+ p&p) for the UK, C-weed sample pack available for $19.95, Face the Day serum available for $49.95, Plump Up the Volume available for $15.95 (all + p&p) from One Lucky Duck who offer worldwide shipping.

Simply Divine Botanicals is the brainchild of herbalist and natural healer Barbara Rogers (who is also the lady responsible for the first Raw Restaurant in Las Vegas!). One night she had divine inspiration and created her first product, since that point the formulas have kept coming. All Simply Divine Botanicals are handcrafted and Reiki-energized.

Face the Day Serum - developed to reduce UV damage to the face, this serum uses the vein of a rare (and expensive) seaweed to create 1lb of extract. This seaweed contains properties that are similar to blood plasma, and helps the absorption of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Designed to re-hydrate, rejuvenate and firm the face, this serum can be applied morning and night (after cleansing) by spritzing your face and leaving to absorb.

Plump Up the Volume - according to One lucky duck "The seaweed extract in this spray attracts and holds moisture creating smooth and supple skin."

C-Weed Sample Pack - is a sample sized pack with both Face the Day and Plump Up the Volume, great for sampling, gifts or travelling. This is the one we went for way back when Glowgetter still stocked it  - if anyone knows of any UK stockists please let us know and we'll update this post.

Face the Day Serum and Plump Up the Volume are designed to work together, but you can use both separately.This pack has had mixed review from all of us at TB&T, in fact we were so divided that we had to leave the product with our friends and family members for their input. Everyone used it for 2 weeks and...well, the results were still as mixed. The ages ranged from 22 - 74, we even got a few guys to try it and got it, still mixed. On the plus side, the combo still got 60% of the vote. Used separately everyone liked the effect of Plump Up the Volume over Face the Day (which only garnered 42% of the vote), noticing immediate effect. Face the Day was more popular with the over 35's, who said that they felt and saw a noticeable difference.

The agreed pro's were that combined they are refreshing and moisturising. Beyond that, differences were only seen in 60% of the group. Not everyone was too sure about the price, yes, we understand that it's expensive to make hand-crafted products using seaweed...but £55 for a bottle is a lot and because of the variation in results it's not something that everyone could agree on (even in the group that saw results while using these products).

Plump Up the Volume was more of an all-rounder, we all loved using it in the morning, it was moisturising and everyone said that it gave their skin a nice glow.

What you shouldn't do with either of these products is apply them after you've come out of the shower. OUCH!! it really does sting, even an hour afterwards. So do be careful!

With all of that said, we appreciated these products during the very cold December that's just passed and Em's brother and his wife said that Face the Day and Plump Up the Volume were great travel aids on their trip to Egypt, providing much needed moisture to the skin in-flight and in the morning and evenings.

If you've ever tried any of the Simply Divine Botanicals Range let us know what you thought in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

Face the Day Serum Ingredients: Unconditional Love and Gratitude, Purified water electrolyzed with 24kt gold, Seaweed extract, Liposome Vitamin C, Essential oils of Frankincense, Myrrh, Tangerine and Lemongrass.

Plump Up the Volume Facial Moisturiser Ingredients: Purified Water electrolyzed with 24kt Gold, Seaweed extract, Frankincense, Myrrh, Lemongrass and Tangerine.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

New Zealand Raw Honey 1KG Review

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Rating: 10/10, available from Goodness Direct in 500g - 1kg jars, priced £6.20 - £11.39 (+ p&p).

Oh food reviews, how we have missed you! It feels like it's been so long! But for all you beauty focused readers out there, fear not for this honey is multi-purpose!

Honey is naturally antiseptic and antibacterial; Wound gels containing raw honey are used against drug resistant strains of MRSA. Honey's antibacterial properties are the result of low water activity, hydrogen peroxide, high acidity and methylglyoxal (a naturally occuring antibacterial).

Hydrogen peroxide might ring a few alarm bells with some, so let us explain: the hydrogen peroxide formed is slow-release. It can only become active when the honey is diluted and when the acidity of the honey is neutralised by body-proteins, it also  requires oxygen to be available for reaction, can be destroyed by the protein-digesting enzymes in wound fluids, oh yes and it's destroyed when the honey is exposed to heat or light.

Ordinarily, hydrogen peroxide is not a friendly substance but because of the wonder powers of honey it: 
chelates and deactivates free iron, which would otherwise catalyze the formation of oxygen free radicals from hydrogen peroxide, leading to inflammation. Also, the antioxidant constituents in honey help clean up oxygen free radicals present. (borrowed from wiki).

The health benefits of honey are many; it has been found that topical application speeds up wound healing, is great on burns, can help soothe gastrointestinal ulcers and arthritis, can increase calcium absorption thereby warding off osteoporosis, can help treat respiratory infections and colds, and can help to boost the immune system. On top of that a teaspoonful can help ease you into sleep.

Because the Glycemic Index of honey ranges from 31 - 78, some diabetics are able to ingest raw honey without suffering from a spike in their blood sugar, Em hasn't been quite so fortunate, but she does list 1 tsp of honey mixed with 1 tsp of olive oil as her favourite 10 minute face mask! If you are interested in reading a preliminary assessment of the Glycemic Index of honeys click here.

Processed honey (the stuff sold in shops) is heated and filtered, and this processing ends up destroying the enzymes and nutrients that are so beneficial to us.

To the Review:

This honey is delicious, we use it for everything from minor burns to hair conditioner, face masks and as a yummy sweetener *ahem* we mean, superfood.

But seriously, this honey is smooth and lasts for ages! It's great value for money, the only down side is that we don't know what the Glycemic Index is for this product. Other than that it is a product that we have recommended to all of our friends, in total it is cheaper than the honey we get at our local store and we've had great results from it.

  • Burns: apply honey to the burn, this will cool the burn down and speed up the healing process.
  • Hair conditioner: Mix 1 part honey with 1 part olive/jojoba oil, apply to the hair, leave for 20 minutes, wash out.
  • Em's Face mask: Mix 1 teaspoon honey with 1 teaspoon olive oil, apply to the face and neck, leave for 10 minutes, wash off with warm water.
  • Super Nourishing Face Mask: mix 2 teaspoons honey with 1/2 tablespoon of miso, apply to the face, leave for 10-20 minutes. Wash off with warm water.
  • For colds: mix 1 cup of warm water with the juice of 1 lemon and 1 teaspoon of honey, drink.
N.B Do remember that you're not supposed to feed raw honey to young children because of the risk of clostridium botulinum - this is because honey can sometimes contain dormant spores of this bacteria, which
can transform into toxin-producing bacteria in a child's immature gastrointestinal tract leading to serious, and sometimes fatal, illness.

Liz Earle New Year, New You Workshops in selected stores

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This weekend (the 15th & 16th January) the London and Leeds Liz Earle stores will be holding their New Year, New You workshops all day. The Liz Earle Isle of Wight store will be holding their workshop on the 15th only.

For those of you lucky enough to be nearby, pop in and try some products!

We Heart Howies! Howies Winter Clearance!

The people at Howies are having their Winter Sale and Clearance Sale now! Get on over there and bag yourself a bargain that is ethical and top quality!!

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Fushi Wellbeing Organic Eczmaid Chickweed & Chamomile Ointment 30ml Review

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Rating: 5/5, available from Fushi Wellbeing for £12.22 (+ p&p), and Feel Unique for £13.45 (including p&p). Both Fushi Wellbeing and Feel Unique ship worldwide.

Fushi Wellbeing is a well being brand that create products for health and beauty. They recently launched the "Tree for Eternity" campaign, in which a percentage of their profits go to Tree Aid, a UK based  forestry-focused charity that uses trees to promote self reliance in some of the poorest villages of Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana and Mail where 90% of people depend on trees for basics survival.

Pretty fab already!

So, what of this ointment? According to Fushi it can be administered to affected areas throughout the day and it's two main components are said to be excellent treatments for eczema; Chickweed detoxifies the skin, and chamomile's anti-inflammatory properties soothe the skin.
Here at Treasure Boxes and Trinkets we are BIG fans of Fushi Wellbeing, we've tried their oils, tinctures and supplements and we've always had excellent results. The same can be said of this ointment. This has become L's go to ointment the moment she gets any dry patches and she swears by it, the differences are noticeable.
We've even used it on irritated skin with great effect!

If you've not used a shea butter based product before you should know that it is a bit grainy when applying,  because it melts on contact with the skin the grains become apparent as you apply it. With saying that, they do disappear quickly!

The ointment smells of calendula and while it's not overpowering it might bother people who aren't too fond of calendula. Other than that it's brilliant!

Have you tried any of the Fushi range? Let us know in the comments!

Ingredients: Shea butter, Calendula oil, Chickweed oil, Sweet almond oil, Olive oil, Hempseed oil, Avocado oil, Beeswax, Chamomile Essential Oil, Vitamin E*, Linalool+
*non organic
+ Components of essential oils

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Dr Bronner's Castille Liquid Soap Review

Image borrowed from
Rating: 5/5, available from Lovelula with prices ranging from £1.99 - £8.49 (+ p&p)

Not only is Dr Bronner's Castille Liquid Soap 82% organic, all natural and fairtrade but the bottles are made from post-consumer recycled plastics and are therefore 100% recyclable. They come in a range of scents (Lovelula stock almond, teatree, eucalyptus, lavender, rose, peppermint and citrus) as well as having one specifically formulated for babies.

Despite Dr Bronner's parents dying in the holocaust, he promoted a belief in the goodness and unity of humanity.The product labels of both the liquid castille soaps and the soap bars are covered in statements of Dr Bronner's philosophy, which he called "All-One-God-Faith" and the "Moral ABC". For more information about Dr Bronner click here

Lovelula also stock Dr Bronner's lip balms, conditioners, shaving gels, soap bars and another range of liquid handsoaps.
Lovelula list a series of suggestions for potential uses:
For everyday body-washing: Get wet and pour several drops of soap full-strength onto hands-washcloth-loofah.

For other uses: Dilute from one part soap into 40 parts water for light cleaning, to cutting it in half or using it full strength for heavy-duty grease-cutting jobs.

For laundry: Use 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup for one regular load; adjust as needed depending on the hardness of your water. Adding a dash of baking soda makes it even better.

People who suffer from eczema or dry skin tend to have trouble with normal soaps and the chemicals that come with them. But L swears by this stuff, she uses it as a hand wash, a shampoo and after mixing 1 part of this soap with 2-3 parts water and 10 drops of an antibacterial essential oil it makes a great mild all-purpose cleaner. We've not washed the dishes with it yet or used it for laundry, but it's been used on the worktops, counters and, well, all over the house!
It's three times more concentrated than most liquid soaps on the market so it lasts forever!
All in all this soap is fantastic, the smaller bottles are great to take away with you when travelling, the scents aren't too overpowering and best of all they are kind to your skin!
If you've ever used Dr Bronner Liquid Castille Soap let us know in the comments!
Ingredients list (taken from Dr Bronner's Castille Liquid Citrus Soap).
Ingredients: Water, Saponified Organic Coconut Oil*, Saponified Organic Olive Oil*, Organic Glycerin, Organic Hemp Seed Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil, Organic Orange Oil**, Organic Lemon Oil**, Organic Lime Oil**, Citric Acid, Vitamin E,
* Fair Trade
** Oils used for scent

Monday, 10 January 2011

Tomorrow services will resume as normal

Hi guys,
sorry we've not posted, over the last few days each of us in turn woke up with a horrible cold and it has dominated our time. As the post title suggests; posting will resume tomorrow. But for now we need just a little more rest and a few more mugs of hot lemon and honey!

Friday, 7 January 2011

Shower curtains: Your options

We never thought that we'd be blogging about shower curtains, to be honest, we didn't think that there was much to say about shower curtains other than the fact that they are useful and can add a touch of vibrance to your bathroom. But, we're not talking about design aspects. According to a 2008 study by the Center for Health, Environment & Justice (CHEJ), the Toxic-Free Legacy Coalition, the Washington Toxics Coalition , and the People For Puget Sound, vinyl shower curtains and shower curtain liners release up to 100 toxic chemicals associated with ill health.

Wow. Em, L and I have been sat around the table discussing shower curtains and we realised that it's ludicrous that we don't opt for biodegradable, eco-friendly shower curtains purely because they're not widely available. Yes, typing it now makes it an obvious choice. But as you readers know, life is busy enough as it  is and sometimes the obvious doesn't occur or doesn't appeal for a multitude of reasons.

You can buy vinyl free shower curtains from stores like IKEA but why not opt for something that will be eco-friendly, healthy, and hardy. So, we did a bit of researching to check out your options:

1) Make your own.
    We live on a meagre salary as individuals, as a group of people...well, it's still meagre. We love shopping but our splurges are mostly during sales or when we spot a bargain. We took the measurements from our previous shower curtain, bought some linen and we set to work (cotton, bamboo, hemp or any other natural fabrics would be just as good). We then oiled it using flax oil, if you are interested in doing the same a step-by-step tutorial for oiling fabrics can be found here. In case you end up with any remnants, oilcloth also makes a great tablecloth. Our shower curtain has lasted us over a year and is still going strong.

2) Hemp shower curtains.
    Hemp is a sustainable crop that is capable of replenishing the soil with nutrients and minerals and is naturally resistant to most pests, once you get past the taste it's also a good way to get more essential fatty acids into your diet. Hemp shower curtains are expensive but very durable. According to various internet sources they insulate well, are naturally anti-bacterial and are easy to clean. It should be noted that although hemp is naturally anti-bacterial, untreated natural products will need to be cleaned every now and then.

   Hemp shower curtains are available from Drapers Organic Cotton in the UK with prices starting from £45.
Rawganique offer worldwide shipping on a selection of sweatshop free organic hemp, organic cotton, soapnut, organic linen, and organic bamboo products including shower curtains.
We've not shopped with either of these stores, so if you have any feedback regarding Drapers Organic Cotton or Rawganique please let us know in the comments :)

3) Bamboo Shower Curtains.
    Bamboo is also naturally anti-bacterial and resilient. But we can't find any stockists for Bamboo shower curtains anywhere. If you know of anywhere please let us know in the comments!

4) Cotton Shower Curtains.
    We'll get onto the ethics of cotton in a later post. But for now, we're focusing on shower curtain options. Cotton is durable, comes in a number of colours and will absorb any splashes from the shower. Cotton shower curtains aren't as expensive as hemp curtains and are available from Satara home with prices starting from $30. Satara home only ship to the US continental states. As yet we can't find any suppliers based in the UK or EU.

5) Linen Shower Curtains.
    Linen is said to be naturally water resistant, and it's density means that it is a durable fabric and will absorb any water splashes from the shower.
Linen Shower Curtains are available from Zara Home who offer worldwide delivery.

If any of you would like to see the report cited at the top of this posting it can be found here and here

If you have any house healthy tips let us know in the comments :)

Online Store Review #3: Lovelula

It's about time that we took a look at this store, we reference it enough. So what is the big deal about Lovelula?

Basically, it's a one stop shop for all of your organic and natural skin care needs. They showcase new brands, stock everything beauty related from bodybrushes and supplements to cosmetics. They also have a strict policy regarding products stocked, they are against animal testing and have a list of ingredients that are verboten (and the reasons why they are avoided) which can be found here. If you'd prefer to just see the list, then you're in luck:
  • Artificial colours
  • Artificial fragrance
  • DEA or TEA (di- or tri-ethanolamine)
  • Formaldehyde (formalin / formal and methyl aldehyde, DMDM Hydantoin and Urea-Imidazolidinyl)
  • GM ingredients
  • Contaminated Lanolin
  • Parabens
  • Mineral oils and petroleum derived ingredients
  • Phthalates (DBP / DMP / DEP)
  • SLS (sodium lauryl sulphate)
  • Contaminated Talc (i.e. talc without asbestos)*
  • Triclosan
  • Zirconium
Rating: 5/5

Lovelula are a fantastic online store that run regular offers and have an admirable policy about the products they stock. Delivery usually takes 3-5 days and their customer care is excellent. They offer 5 free samples with each order over £5 and..well, there's absolutely nothing bad to say about them. We've referred our friends (including all of you) to the site and, from what we've heard, they've all had a good shopping experience with them too!

I think that's our shortest review to date!

* in the interest of full disclosure, all of our reading suggests that talc is not good for you, a very brief example comes from the talc entry on wiki:

The studies reference, by subject: pulmonary issues, lung cancer, skin cancer and ovarian cancer. One of these, published in 1993, was a US National Toxicology Program report, which found that cosmetic grade talc containing no asbestos-like fibres was correlated with tumour formation in rats (animal testing) forced to inhale talc for 6 hours a day, five days a week over at least 113 weeks.A 1971 paper found particles of talc embedded in 75% of the ovarian tumors studied.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

What to do when an online store sends you an order twice (and charges you for it).

Today at work there was a huge controversy; Sarah had discovered that an online store from which she had ordered christmas presents had charged her twice (claiming that she had made the exact same order 10 minutes prior to her actual order, and the shop had "forgotten" to send her any confirmation of this magical order). Now they want to charge her the postage to make the returns even though she had not made the order - she tracks all of her credit card transactions so she is on top of her spending (a wise decision).

So she e-mailed them once more, they "amended" her account to show that an order had been put in and accepted responsibility for not having put that order there in the first place. What Sarah found most frustrating about this order is that it would have required time travel for her to make it; she was at a pot luck. Unless (a) her thoughts about this order somehow made it to her computer, placed the order and passed her credit card verification or (b) she managed to mind control her cat to do it while she was out, she really didn't understand how this had happened.

I feel her pain, it is rubbish when a shop decides that they can chop and change their shopping rules or a system glitch has occurred and the shop believes itself to be infallible. It is even more rubbish when you realise that there is little you can do about it other than stamp your feet and complain to the shop and the regulating authorities. Yes, there's always the forum rampage option...but it is difficult to be taken seriously and some people even ridicule you for raising the point in the first place.

Regardless, the latter two options won't get your money back and, in some cases, neither will the first.

After an afternoon of back-and-forth e-mails in which the offending store wouldn't budge on their position and stated clearly that if she wanted to return the items (which she hasn't yet received) she would be responsible for postage costs.

So we put our heads together. If she doesn't receive the items she can always tell the store and, according to store policy, they will refund her . If she does receive the items, she's not too keen in paying for postage of the returns because it's quite weighty and will be expensive. Moments passed and then it hit me: hold an office sale.

The option of selling these things to other people, not to make money but to make sure the items go to a proper home and reimbursing you for the error, is not an obvious choice. We stop ourselves with self-defeating thoughts, convinced that no-one would want to buy the items. After a few e-mails to other departments, other people joined in and we've now scheduled an out-of-hours office sale (there will be no second hand items as we have a jumble sale once every few months) that will be held at Sarah's house and have made a few new friends. Not a bad day's work.

The reason we wanted to blog about this is that these things happen and a lot of the time, as consumers, we feel pressured to keel over and follow the store's procedure. When in actual fact we have a lot more options than might occur to us in that moment of credit-card-bill-induced-panic.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Lavera Natural Soft Eyeliner Review

Image borrowed from
Rating: 4/5, available from Lovelula for £8.50 (+ p&p). Available in black, brown & grey.

Eureka! A Lavera product that we got along with! It's not quite perfect, but as far as natural eyeliners go this one has good colour intensity and lasting power. Unlike the Lavera mascara that we blogged about last month, this product doesn't insist on leaving a residue under your eyes and is easy to remove.

It's caused no irritation and has attracted a few compliments, which is always nice. It is also easy to apply, so there's no needless dragging of the oh-so-delicate skin around the eyes, which is another bonus.

I don't know whether it's safe to use on the waterline, but it's staying power there is a little temperamental and probably depends on far more factors than I can think of right now. It's best used as a smudgey kohl pencil and can't really hold a slick line. Which is a shame because that would have earned this a 5/5, still a 4/5 is nothing to scoff at and is pretty good going given that up until now Lavera have failed to impress everyone (Ok, ok, me, Em and L) here at Treasure Boxes and Trinkets. Don't even get us started on our failed attempts with their shampoos, they did less for our hair than Dead Sea Spa Magik Shampoo...and that's saying something.

What are your favourite beauty brands? Have you tried any other natural eyeliners? Let us know in the comments!

Ingredients: Hydrogenated Jojoba Oil, Caprylic/capric Triglyceride, Jojoba Seed Oil*, Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil , Shea Butter*, Canola Oil, Candelilla Wax, Glyceryl Caprylate, Carnauba Wax, Tocopherol, Sunflower Seed Oil, Ascorbyl Palmitate. May contain: Mica, Iron Oxides (CI 77499), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77491), Iron Oxides (CI 77492), Bismuth Oxychloride (CI 77163)]
* Ingredients from certified organic agriculture.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Irish Moss, An Introduction.

Irish Moss (Chrondrus crispus) is a seaweed that can be boiled to turn it into a thickener or soaked and blended to be used raw.

Mineral and vitamin rich, irish moss is a great source of vitamin D and B12. It also has a soothing effect on mucuous membranes in the body and has been used to treat respiratory and digestive problems. It's Iodine content helps support thyroid health and can aid weight loss. Used externally Irish moss can soften and plump up the skin, and can also be used to ease sunburn, rashes, psoriasis and eczema. In fact, we first bought it to help L with her dry skin patches and it was only after reading the Sunny Raw Kitchen that we decided to venture into the land of Irish moss based raw desserts.

In case you were interested in the effects of topical application on dry skin patches it worked really well.

If you're interested in some Irish moss tips then click here. It's tricky, but if you follow those instructions then it will work! The blending process does take a while though, so don't be disheartened! This weekend we made these desserts using Irish Moss (we tweaked the persimmon shortcake recipe and incorporated Irish Moss into the cream!):
Left-Right: Persimmon shortcake from Carmella's Delightfully Raw Ebook, Cafe Gratitude's Chocolate Hazelnut mousse pie, Cafe Gratitude's Coconut Cream Pie.
Taste: When done properly, you can't taste the Irish moss, it just gives the dish a lighter texture. It's also caused our tummies no troubles. Which is another bonus :)

We buy our Irish Moss in 500g bags from Raw Living for £14.75 (+p&p, EU and US delivery available), for those of you in the U.S Cafe Gratitude stock it in 8 oz. bags for $12 (+ p&p) and One Lucky Duck stock it in 2 oz. bags for $11.50 (+ p&p).

The Sunny Raw Kitchen

We've had a few e-mails about raw food and the elitist attitude that can come with it. We can't deny that some people have that attitude, people are people and some people like to be judgemental for whatever reason. In our own experience of raw "judgement", Em and I had the delightful opportunity of having a raw proponent scoff at us for being so disgusting as to "even consider" consuming an animal product (we were talking about goat's cheese and how it's been a fantastic food that helped our transition from pre-tummy issues to living with tummy issues).

On the other hand, we've met lovely raw people who prefer not to wax lyrical about their food choices or do the hard sell (you know who you are). Instead we've chatted about things other than the latest superfood or a brand new supplement. Don't get us wrong, we love chatting about food and life and lifestyle choices...but we, like most people, don't do so well with being preached at by anyone. Especially people who arrogantly tell you that your food choices are wrong, despite the fact that they know nothing about you or your diet.

The Sunny Raw Kitchen is a fantastic resource for anyone interested in tasty recipes and raw food. Run by the lovely Carmella Soleil, it has to be the best raw food blog. Most of the recipes use easy to source ingredients and they are always delicious.

If you are in the U.S. then you are lucky enough to be in close proximity to the food tours she does! So jealous right now!

You might be thinking that I'm bigging up my friend, but I don't know Carmella personally. I've been following the Sunny Raw Kitchen for ages and, in fact, it's what inspired the following post. Which is why it seemed only necessary to introduce you to the wonder that is The Sunny Raw Kitchen.

Check it out and let us know what you think :)

Lovelula £5 voucher for orders over £25

Image from

Free UK P&P at Liz Earle

Just a quick post to say that Liz Earle are offering free standard UK p&p for orders of £30 or more until 31st January.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Trilogy Everything Balm 45ml Review

Rating: 5/5.
Available from Feel Unique for £9.72 (including free worldwide delivery), and Lovelula for £12.50 (+ p&p).

Trilogy Everything Balm is packed full of vitamins, antioxidants, omega 3 and omega 6 and was highly commended in 2010's natural health beauty awards as a wrinkle zapper. Aptly titled this versatile beauty balm can be used as a nail and lip conditioner, moisturiser, massage oil and is gentle enough to be used as a baby oil. It also lasts FOREVER. OK, maybe not forever, but our house has had a 45ml jar for 8 months and we're only just making a dent in it.

The packaging is very cute and is all recyclable (as far as we can tell), the lovely people at Trilogy have gone to extra efforts with their package design:

I know, how cute?

You only need a small amount and we've used it for . . . everything, L's dry skin patches are loving the extra nourishment and usually disappear after 2 applications.

It smells so light and summery, is the perfect size to carry around in your handbag and (being solid) there is little to no chance of any oil spillage (unless you are in the habit of putting your handbag in very hot places).

This product is a winner! There are no two ways about it!

If you've ventured into the lands of Trilogy let us know what you thought in the comments!!

Please remember to patch test all new products before incorporating them into your beauty regime!

Ingredients: Octyl Palmitate, Beeswax, Marula Nut Oil, Olive Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Jojoba Oil, Vitamin E, Wheat Germ Oil, Honey, Parfum, Citral*, D-Limonene*, Citronellol*, Coumarine*, Geraniol*, Linalool*
* Naturally occuring compounds in essential oils

Octyl palmitate is a clear liquid derived from palm oil, learn more about it here

Time for treats; Oil & Yogurt Conditioner

OK, so I was hoping to do a brilliant post on Irish moss but after being defeated by the stuff two days in a row I've come up with a little something special for you (That's right, Irish moss is why I didn't post last night - note to self: remember not to get too involved with post topics!)
There are a gazillion things that live in the kitchen - and are predominantly used for eating - that are also fantastic for your hair and skin. For instance an over-ripe banana, mashed into a paste makes an awesome pre-shampoo conditioner that will leave your hair gleaming. Mix that banana with a bit of coconut milk and you've magicked that one ingredient conditioner into a 2-course meal for your hair.

But today, we're talking yogurt (preferably live) and 1 or 2 oils of your choosing. We were once told that yogurt is best used on dark hair but Em's fair-haired and it's been as nourishing to her hair as it has ours.

Yogurt and Oil Pre-Shampoo Conditioner
You can always use one oil instead of two, so long as you use 2 tablespoons of oil the recipe will be super nourishing! To put your own twist on this you can always add a few drops of an essential oil suited to your hair type. Chamomile is great for fair hair and Rosemary is good for dark hair.

1 tbsp live yogurt (we use goat's yogurt)
1 tbsp avocado oil
1 tbsp hemp seed oil/olive oil/omega oil blend

1) Put all of the ingredients into a cup, mix it up, if using add 2-4 drops of your chosen essential oil now.

2) Apply to your hair and leave for 15-20 minutes.

3) Shampoo.

N.B. If you'd prefer not to use yogurt, gently warm 2-3 tbsps of olive oil (or a blend of oils as above),  wrap your hair in a towel for 20 minutes. Shampoo.

We hope you've had a lovely day!

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Battle of the Cleansers: Liz Earle VS Trilogy

You got here just in time!!! Meet today's contenders.....first up is......
Trilogy Cleansing Cream with Rosehip oil
Image borrowed from
Available from feelunique for £17.92 (free worldwide delivery), and also from Lovelula for £22 (+ p&p).

2010's Green Beauty Bible winner, this cleanser is all natural and contains half a bottle of Trilogy's famed rosehip oil. It's also full of almond oil, evening primrose oil, aloe vera, carrot oil, orange oil, rose geranium oil, frankincense oil, lavender oil, chamomile oil, grapefruit extract and vitamin E, making this cleanser an antioxidant rich, moisturising treat for the skin.

All you need to do is apply, massaging into the face and neck, and then rinse off with warm water.

But be warned, the instructions do say that this cleanser is only suitable for normal-dry skin.

Ingredients: Aqua (water), glycerin (vegetable), rosa canina (rosehip oil), oenothera blennis (evening primrose oil), buxus chinensis (jojoba oil), prunus dulcis (almond oil), aloe barbadensis (aloe vera), wheat straw glycosides, cetearyl alcohol, daucus carota sativa (carrot oil), aurantium dulcis (orange flower oil), pelargonium roseum (rose geranium oil), boswelia carterlii (frankinscence oil), lavandula angustifolia (lavender oil), chamomile rectita flower oil, citurs grandis (grapefruit seed extract), tocopherol (vitamin e), phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexyglycerin, citral*, citraniol*, citronellol*, limonene*, linalool*
*components of natural essential oils

And in the Green Corner is.......Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish, hot cloth cleanser!!!!

Image borrowed from
 Available from Liz Earle with prices starting from £5.00 (+p&p)

It's lean, it's green and it makes your skin oh so smooooooooooth.
Ok, ok, you don't really need an introduction to this one. It's won so many awards and is adored by many natural beauties, liklihood is that you've tried it, but until we were researching sun lotions we had never heard of Liz Earle (Sorry!). Yes, we know. How could we?? Truth is, we don't really know ourselves.

It's a two stage cleanser, first off you massage 1-2 pumps of cream onto dry skin and then you rinse the muslin cloth in hand-hot water, wring out before polishing off the cream to gently buff away dead skin cells and give you a glow. You then splash some cool water over your face and moisturise.

This cleanser comprises of beeswax, cocoa butter, eucalyptus oil, chamomile oil, rosemary oil, hops extract and Vitamin B5. This combo makes for a cleanser that stimulates cell renewal and is moisturising, soothing, astringent and toning.

It's suitable for all skin types and if you have oily or acne prone skin this cleanser comes highly recommended.

Liz Earle products never use synthetically derived Vitamin E, animal ingredients, mineral oils, genetically engineered/modified ingredients and only use preservatives when there is no other option. In that instance they use low concentrations of high grade broad-spectrum preservatives. Their ethnobotanist supports sustainable products and local community growers, they strive to use as much organic produce as possible and they actively work on reducing their environmental impact.

Ingredients: Aqua (water), Caprylic/capric triglyceride, Theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, Cetearyl alcohol, Cetyl esters, Sorbitan stearate, Polysorbate 60, Vegetable glycerin, Cera alba (beeswax), Propylene glycol, Humulus lupulus (hops) extract, Panthenol, Rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) extract, Anthemis nobilis (chamomile) extract, Eucalyptus globulus (eucalyptus) oil, Limonene, Citric acid, Sodium hydroxide, Phenoxyethanol, Benzoic acid, Ethylhexylglycerin, Dehydroacetic acid, Polyaminopropyl biguanide.

The Review
The Trilogy cleanser offers a rich cream that leaves the skin soft and smooth. But you do need a lot more than the packaging suggests. We also had a bit of trouble with the pump, in the end we had to unscrew the top just to get some of the cream out...and it didn't rinse make-up off. Instead, we had to apply a few times and use cotton wool to help remove it.

We usually love Trilogy products but this disappointed, instead of using it as a make-up remover we use it as a general cleanser before bed. Which does give us a gorgeous glow

Liz Earle on the other hand is the quickest - and easiest - cleanser that we've ever used! It goes on smooth, you only need a small amount and it removes all traces of stubborn make-up. That being said, it's not as natural as Trilogy, and does contain sodium hydroxide. But because of Liz Earle philosophy, it is our overall winner as an all-purpose facial cleanser.

Trilogy: 4/5
Liz Earlie: 5/5