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Winterizing Your Skin Care Routine: 6 Tips for a Glowing Complexion

6 Tips to Winterize Your Skin Care Routine

Freezing temperatures. High winds. Dry indoor air. It goes without saying that these harsh winter variables do not exactly provide us with an ideal recipe for dewy, glowy skin. Keeping our skin looking and feeling good this time of year requires a little (or a lot…) of extra TLC. If you’re someone who tends to battle dry, irritated skin all winter long we’ve got a few tips that will certainly help.

1. Hydrate and up those EFA’s

Every skin care routine should start from the inside out. After all – our skin is our body’s largest organ. It’s the body’s first line of defense against the outside world, it helps regulate our body temperature, contains nerves that are in constant communication with our brain, and even produces important hormones and Vitamin D. Yet it’s easy to forget all that it does for us. In order for the skin to be well hydrated, our body has to be well hydrated too. This means drinking plenty of water, and also ingesting enough essential fatty acids. Aim for several liters of water per day, and be sure to eat plenty of healthy plant-based fat sources like cold-pressed oils, avocados, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and raw nut butter. Not only will water and EFAs help keep our skin happy and hydrated all winter long, but those two things are also vital for our detoxification processes, healthy nerve function, and also help keep inflammation at bay. Be conscious of caffeine consumption. It’s easy to lean on things like coffee to give us an energy boost during the winter, but caffeine is also a well-known diuretic. If you do drink coffee, be sure to drink extra water to help compensate for what your body is flushing out.

2. Cover up

The best way to keep the skin from being stripped of all moisture when outdoors is to cover up. Most of us have experienced dry, red, chapped skin from being outdoors without the proper protection, especially on areas that tend to be the most exposed like the hands and face. Make sure to put on a hat, gloves, and/or a scarf when you go outside. Your skin will thank you every time.

3. Pick up a serum (or two!)

Serums are concentrated skin elixirs that are used to target very specific concerns and issues within the skin. They’re an excellent way to give the skin TLC when it needs the extra support. During the winter, when the air is typically cold and dry, it is important to be using products that help do two important things: bind water to the skin yet also seal in the moisture with lipids (oils). Harsh winter weather can easily zap vital moisture from the skin, and damage the skin’s barrier function. By using a water-based serum with humectants (water-binding agents), followed by an oil-based serum, or an oil-rich moisturizer or balm, this really helps create an important seal which inhibits dehydration and minimizes irritation. Try an oil-rich serum infused with hemp CBD extract for added anti-inflammatory benefits. You’ll be plumped up, glowing, and hydrated in no time.

4. Give up the suds

While many of us correlate soap suds with cleanliness, those soapy bubbles may actually be doing more harm than good. If your skin tends to be dry and more sensitive during the winter, try swapping out your normal gel or foaming cleanser for a cleansing cream, oil, or balm. These products work to cleanse the skin by breaking down the excess oils, makeup, and the day’s dirt and grime through emulsification instead of soap. They are generally less stripping, more pH balanced, and more gentle. A great option for winter.

5. Take advantage of the night

During the winter, the nighttime can become a very important time to restore balance and hydration within the skin while you’re not out braving the elements. We have more control over our climate indoors. We can use a humidifier to add more moisture to the air, and can also use products while we sleep to help calm the skin and prepare it for battle, i.e the next (cold and dry) day ahead. The skin goes through deeper healing processes while we sleep, making it an ideal time to layer on the serums, thicker moisturizers, and sleep masks so that we wake up glowing and rejuvenated.

6. Cool it down

This tip may not be well received if you tend to live for long, hot showers, but hear us out. One of the worst enemies of dry skin is hot water. Not only does it damage the lipid barrier, which may already be in a delicate state during the winter, it also has a tendency of increasing redness and inflammation, two symptoms that are typically already exasperated by cold, dry winter air. You don’t have to give up taking your favorite soul-nurturing, restorative baths. That would be cruel. Just be mindful to use only warm water to cleanse the face, never hot. And if you do take a hot bath try adding some coconut oil or argan oil to the water, and always apply a moisturizer, oil, or balm afterward.

windycityorganics.com
windycityorganics.com

8 Ways Indoor Plants Can Improve Your Health

8 Ways Indoor Plants Can Improve Your Health

 

While there is no doubt that bringing a bit of greenery into a space is an easy way to add beauty, color and life, embellishing your home with plants does so much more than just add a chic, instagram-worthy esthetic. House plants can actually help optimize your health in profound ways. And with fall and subsequent chillier temperatures right around the corner, now is the perfect time to start thinking of ways to improve the quality of your indoor living space.
How Plants Can Help….

1. More Oxygen

Our human respiration process involves taking in oxygen, and exhaling Co2. Plants do the very opposite – they take in the Co2 released from our lungs and give us clean oxygen in return. Every cell in the body will benefit from a more abundant supply of pure oxygen. Proper oxygenation is vital to every aspect of our health, from our metabolism, immune system, and detoxification processes, to our mood and energy levels.

2. Less Toxins

Both plant leaves and roots work to help eliminate toxins from the air via a process called phytoremediation. Our modern-day indoor work and living environments have the potential to contain a true cocktail of toxicity from trace amounts of carbon monoxide gas, to common household toxins of benzene, formaldahyde and trichloroethylene which enter into homes through things like vinyl, adhesives, paints, or plastics. Most mainstream cleaning products are also full of chemicals which can toxify the air through vapors, fumes, and residues. The level of indoor air pollution has become such a concern that the EPA has even warned that our indoor environment has the potential to be even more polluted than the outdoor air in large, industrialized cities. While it’s best to try and minimize the presence of these chemicals in our environment as much as possible, plants do have the ability to help absorb and filter out many of these toxins naturally while we go about our daily lives. We’re breathing deeper already.

3. Allergy Relief

Whether it’s dust, pollen, or pet allergies, house plants can bring a world of relief to your sinuses by helping to reduce allergy-inducing particulate matter that may be floating around in the air. Because of their large surface area, plants attract particulate matter that may be stimulating mild or moderate environmental allergies. Just be sure to show your plants some TLC by gently wiping the dust from their leaves every so often. They will show their appreciation by becoming greener, healthier, and better able to cleanse your air.

4. Cold and Flu Buster

One of the major benefits of more oxygen and less toxicity in the environment is that it sets the body up for more robust health and better resiliency. A cleaner, healthier environment means that the immune system is less burdened on a daily basis, which means that when cold and flu season hits, your immune system will better able to beat the bug.

5. Improved Skin and Respiratory Health

Nothing ages us faster than chronic dehydration. House plants to the rescue! Certain house plants, especially those that live in tropical environments like palms, help to restore moisture levels to dry indoor air at levels comparable to electric humidifiers. And no electricity needed. This can help keep the skin, sinuses, and respiratory tract more hydrated and comfortable during the cold, dry winter season.

6. Mood Boosting

Have you ever wondered why you feel instantaneously uplifted and more grounded when surrounded by nature? Part of this has to do with what’s called the biophilia effect. This hypothesis states that human beings have an inborn tendency to seek connection with nature and other forms of life. It explains why environments rich in visual or physical aspects of nature, whether it’s nature photography, or actual living plants, can have a calming, healing effect. This can be especially helpful during the fall and winter season when most of us tend to go into hibernation mode, spending less time outdoors.

7. Peace and Quiet

Plants have long been used outside to help buffer noise pollution from busy roads and city life, and this same benefit can be used to help buffer background noise in your home or office as well. Plants have the ability to absorb, diffract or reflect sound, making both living and working environments much more comfortable with less distraction or annoyance.

8. Plant Medicine On Tap

A few common house plants even have medicinal benefits that we can enjoy on a regular basis. Aloe vera, for instance, is very low maintenance and easy to grow indoors, and the healing jelly it contains can be harvested fresh directly from the leaves. Aloe jelly is rich in polysaccharides and humectants, which plump up the skin with moisture, stimulate tissue repair, and soothe inflammation. The jelly can be added to smoothie or juices for great benefit to the GI tract, or it can be used topically to nourish and heal the skin.

Our Top Plant Picks

If you’re completely new to the world of house plants – here are a few faves to get you started….

1. Philadendron

2. Schefflera

3. Fiddle Leaf Fig

4. Ferns

5. Peace Lily

6. Succulents

7. Snake Plant

8. Cactus

 

Have fun creating your indoor oasis and breathe deep!

 

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Cool Your Nerves with This Hemp CBD Iced Matcha Latte

Hemp CBD Iced Matcha Latte

Ahhh there really is nothing better than an iced matcha latte! Wait, scratch that, there is something better. An iced matcha latte with CBD. If you haven’t yet tried this combination you are in for a real treat. Dare we say, it’s a match(a) made in heaven. The perfect way to both energize yourself and boost mental alertness while also promoting a calm, content, and grounded state of being. It’s like the holy grail of benefits. Why do we love these two functional superfood ingredients so much?

Benefits of Matcha

Matcha offers the same health benefits as green tea (hello antioxidants!), only in a much more concentrated delivery package. Unlike green tea which is made by steeping the leaves in hot water, matcha is made from whole green tea leaves which are typically stone ground into a finely milled powder. A serving of matcha (about a tsp) contains about 3 times as much caffeine as a cup of steeped green tea, so it certainly delivers a serious energy boost, but the effect is more gentle than coffee on the nervous system and adrenals. This is thanks to an amino acid glutamate known as L-theanine, which has been shown to stimulate serotonin, dopamine, and GABA – important neurotransmitters in the brain which play a key role in regulating mood, emotions, alertness, energy, appetite, cognitive activity, and sleep. L-theanine has also been shown to help stimulate the brain’s alpha waves, the ones associated with a state of “wakeful relaxation” – where we’re alert and focused but also calm and content.

Benefits of CBD

Cannabidiol, or CBD for short, is one of the two main cannabinoids that have now been isolated in the cannabis plant genus (hemp and marijuana). If when you think cannabinoid you think THC, don’t get the two confused. Unlike THC, CBD doesn’t produce a high (we promise), yet it most definitely has an impact on the body, being responsible for much of hemp’s therapeutic benefits. CBD interacts with what’s known as our endocannabinoid system, a network of special neurotransmitters that bind to cannabinoid receptors in our central and peripheral nervous systems. What does the endocannabinoid system impact? Think hormone regulation, fertility, immunity, appetite signals, pain sensation, mood, and cognition to name a few. CBD helps support our nervous system and mood, has a subtle calming effect, and is also an antioxidant in its own right.

Ready to experience the synergy of these two in one epic, mood-boosting latte?

The Recipe

Hemp CBD Iced Matcha Latte

Hemp CBD Iced Matcha Latte 

Serves 1

Ingredients

1.5 tsp matcha

2 oz water

10 oz plant milk of choice – coconut, almond, hemp, etc.

dropperful Veggimins Hemp CBD (use the strength you’d like)

1/4 tsp vanilla extract or pinch vanilla bean paste

1-2 tsp raw honey or maple syrup

Instructions

1. Blend your milk of choice with sweetener, vanilla and hemp CBD extract.

2. Heat water until near boiling and pour over your matcha in a heat-safe glass or small bowl and whisk until smooth to create a concentrated matcha “shot”.

3. Pour blended nut milk in a glass over ice, then your matcha last.

Hemp CBD Iced Matcha Latte