Products I Freaking Love

Truth be told, it is 4:26 am right now. I woke up about 20 minutes ago and couldn’t fall back asleep. I was laying in bed thinking about writing this post and decided to get up and do it. Quiet time is almost non-existent with a baby at home, so I thought I would take advantage of the early morning hours. Not a complaint; just reality. 🙂 I really try to be present during the day when I am home with Bode. I don’t want him to feel slighted in lieu of my work. I think they can sense when you aren’t really present with them, don’t you?

Do you ever just find a product you love, love, love? I have found a bunch lately and want to share them with you. I can’t stop talking about them in real-life, so I figure why not in cyber-life too. 🙂 I am a raving fan over all of these. I love getting recommendations on products, stores, and services from my friends. It is always great to know somebody else tried it, used it, and loved it. Don’t blame me if your husband gets mad that you went out and bought all of this stuff up.

Think Dirty – My friend Christi told me about this app. I am obsessed. Like, it is taking over normal life. Basically, you can scan products (cosmetics, soaps, toiletry items, cleaning products) and it will rate the product 1 out of 10 based on it’s overall toxicity level. It shows the product’s potential for being a carcinogen, allergen, and it’s potential affect on immunity, development, and reproduction. It breaks down each ingredient, talks through what it is, and why it is harmful to your health. You can create lists and categories to store everything in that you scanned. It was time for me to makeover this area of my life. I am so cautious about what I put into my body food-wise but haven’t completely jumped on the bandwagon skin-wise. 2017 is the year. Fun fact: Your skin is your largest organ. I haven’t had the kahunas to scan in my favorite hair volumizer (see below) though–not ready to give that up quite yet.

Earth Mama Angel Baby  – Johnson and Johnson rated a 10 (the worst) on Think Dirty’s toxicity scale. GAHHHH. That’s kinda crap, isn’t it? I heard about Earth Mama Angel Baby brand back when my friend Brittany recommend their nipple butter for sore breastfeeding nipples. I had breastfeeding struggles and never got the chance to use it. The brand caught my eye when I was scanning the shelf at Fresh Thyme looking for a shampoo/bath wash and lotion alternative for Bode. It is an organic product and free of artificial fragrances, preservatives, antibacterial chemicals, phthalates, parabans, and harsh sulfates. I bought the lavender vanilla scent for the shampoo and bath wash combo and went with the unscented lotion. The scents in their products are from essential oils. I LOVE both the shampoo/body wash and lotion. I swear Bode has never smelled so fresh and clean. After his bath I can’t stop smelling and kissing his cute little face. He hasn’t had any issues with his skin being sensitive to it either. This is a must-have product for mamas.

Alaffia – I bought this brand to replace my toxic shampoo, conditioner, lotion, and hand soaps. Honestly, I was a little overwhelmed when I was looking for new products to try but the department manager at Fresh Thyme (I think her name was Mary–I wish I could remember. I want to send a thank-you card to her because she was so helpful!) recommended this brand. She said it is free of harmful additives and a customer-favorite. The brand is fair-trade and also gives back to the African community in a variety of ways. I bought the coconut-scented shampoo, conditioner, and lotion and the lavender-scented hand soap. I am really digging these products. I feel good knowing I “cleaned up” a lot of my daily self-care items. I will say all of the products have a slightly different texture than what I was use to but it doesn’t bother me at all. I just don’t want you to be surprised if you try it.

Moroccan Oil – This has been a long-time favorite product of mine. I use it mostly in the winter when my hair is dryer than normal. Every third day or so I run a teaspoon-size amount through my hair. It revives it and gives it a little extra shine.

Drybar Triple Sec 3 in 1 Volumizer, Texturizer, and Dry Shampoo – This is my beloved volumizer that I don’t have the kahunas to scan into the Think Dirty app. My friend Hayley told me about this product. I have never met a product that gave me so much volume–it’s insane. I flip my hair over after blow-drying and give a good all-over spray for about three seconds. When I flip back over, I have to brush my ends just a little bit to get my hair to lay right. I have been spiral curling my hair lately and this product helps hold the curl too. It’s awesome–I would pay double for it.

Herb Pharm Breath Refresher – This probably seems a little weird–lol. I have had a gum habit for a long time. When I say habit, I mean like chewing gum all day long and spitting out an old piece to put a new piece in right away. I felt naked if I didn’t have gum in my purse. This is another area of “readiness” that I am wanting to change this year. Gum typically has aspartame or some other kind of artificial sweetener in it–not good. I ask myself, “If I wouldn’t buy food with that ingredient, why I am I chewing gum with it?” Hmmm–point taken, self. Anyhow, when I gave it up I missed having that minty feeling in my mouth. I have been using this breathe spray a few times a day when I feel like I need a little refresher. It’s an organic blend of cane alcohol, vegetable glycerin, herbs, and essential oils.

Mother In Law’s Kimchi – Kimchi is a fermented product that is beneficial for your gut health. It is super high in probiotics and will help improve the good bacteria in your gut. Everyone can benefit from better gut bacteria. A lot of people think eating healthy means only removing foods from your diet. I like to think of eating healthy as adding health-promoting foods to your diet. Kimchi fits that bill. I have been buying the Mother In Law’s Napa Cabbage blend and mixing it into eggs or pairing it with turkey, hummus, and Mary’s Gone Crackers (my favorite gluten-free cracker).

La Croix – Ok, another tell-all… When I was pregnant, I got in the very bad habit of drinking one can of Diet Coke everyday. I know, I know, I know, a wellness coach should (and does) know better. Anyhow, I justified it since I couldn’t drink much caffeine, eat sushi, drink wine, blah, blah, blah. La Croix is my savior when it comes to removing Diet Coke from my diet. The first time I had it, I thought it was kind of nasty but I gave it a few tries and now I love it! I look forward to it as a “little pick-me-up” in the afternoon. Remember how back in the day you thought wine tasted nasty and now you like it? Same sort of thing.

Bulletproof Coffee from Simply Pressed Juiced – Simply Pressed is a new cold-pressed juice bar in Granger, IN. It is on SR 23 in-between Main St. and Grape Rd.–the complex that Gigi’s Cupcakes is in–because we all know where that is at, right? I haven’t tried their juice yet but I just love their bulletproof coffee. Bulletproof coffee has an equal mix of coconut oil and grass-fed butter blended into it. It tastes like a luxury and is a great way to add healthy fat to your diet. I consider it a little treat when I am out and about. I actually stopped in there today for a smoothie and they told me they are now serving acai bowls–that will be next on my list to try.

Martin’s Smoothie Bar – I have been loving the Martin’s smoothie bar at their SR 23 location. It is a convenient place for me to stop on my way home from barre or when I am running errands. I prefer the “make your own” smoothie so I can balance the fruit with a protein option (Greek yogurt, powder, or egg white), spinach or kale, and avocado. The pricing is great–it’s $2.99 for a small and $3.99 for a large. A few of the add-in options are $1 extra. I like knowing exactly what is going in and that it is made from all real food.

Fresh Thyme – I have really saved money on my total grocery bill by shopping at Fresh Thyme. They run such good deals on their organic produce. I buy organic cucumbers, broccoli, kale, apples, cucumber, and lemons there almost every week. I will say, the only downfall I have found is that they have been out of their advertised specials a few of the times I have gone–that is irritating especially when you have a 13 lb. sidekick you lug around with you! It’s not a deal breaker for me though–the savings are too good.

The One Year Bible NLT – My friend Rhonda told me about a one-year Bible she got and how much she loves it. It has been an ongoing goal of mine to get more into the Word and after she told me about her one-year Bible I knew I wanted to get one too. I went to the Family Christian Bookstore in Mishawaka and this is the one they recommended. Each day you read a Scripture from the Old Testament, a Scripture from the New Testament, a Psalm, and a Proverb. The New Living Translation (NLT) has a modern tone to it. I like having my New International Version (NIV) close by so I can refer back and forth. The NIV tone is more of what I am use to. I am going to try read every single day but if I miss a day or two I am not going to beat myself up about it. My friend Katy bought one and I bought one for my mom too. I am glad I will have people to talk about it to.

So, there it is–all of my current favorite things. What have you been loving lately? Leave a comment below and let me know!

Gina Schade

Gina Schade

Gina is a certified health coach and author of The 90/10 Life Cookbook, and director at Beatycounter. She helps her clients create a toxin-free complexion they feel 100% confident in!

2 Comments

  1. Avatar
    Lisa Nyers

    Gina,
    These are all amazing recommendations, I especially like the body product suggestions. I, too, am embarking on this journey!
    So LOVE the app recommendations, voluminizer, and shampoo recommendations- must try!
    A couple places to check out for better alternatives:
    Beauty counter- on line
    Primal beauty- on line and EWG had a rated list of products just like the dirty dozen. It is a bit overwheling?, so the app sounds perfect.
    I just love your writing Gina-your voice and enthusiasm for healthy living shines through!
    Love, love! Lisa

  2. Avatar
    Rebecca

    Love it! I use the EWG app and am always scanning products on the shelves ?. They have an app for products and food! I have the same gum habit and am working myself up to changing it! It’s one of the last vices I have left so I haven’t forced myself yet?. I’m going to try your breath spray!

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