Tag Archives: health

Why make the switch? Why choose natural cosmetics?

26 Dec


Studies on phthalates:

and the Wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phthalate

Review: a few RMS beauty products

5 Dec

So the video above gives you a bit of an impression of what the products are like, and I’ll go into a bit more detail here. I hope you can see that they all go on very easily, you can use just your fingers. It is probably hard to tell from a Mac-filmed video, but when I went out for the day, my skin was glowing. The products feel amazing on your skin, but I do have the following tips:

Un-cover up: blend well, apply a couple of layers (waiting a bit between applications), but don’t expect full coverage.

Living luminizer: DO NOT APPLY TO ENTIRE EYELID – I don’t want to sound dramatic, but if you apply this any higher than the few millimitres closest to your lash line, your eyelid will feel greasy-sticky. Keep it AWAY from your crease! Apply liberally to your cheekbones/wherever you want to glow. It is not shimmery or sparkly, it simply creates a warm glow.

Lip2Cheek in Modest: apply lip balm/make sure skin is well hydrated before applying, since this is a stain-like product. It will not provide much hydration but the colour is gorgeous and a little goes a very long way.

Quick take on RMS Beauty overall:

  • Most ingredients are organic.
  • There is not a single toxic (or potentially toxic) ingredient in any of the RMS products except one of the Lip2Cheek colours (where there is 0.5% synthetic colouring; all the other colours are beautiful so you can easily avoid it if you want to).
  • The packaging is recyclable: the glass pots with metal lids as well as the paper box they come in. You could even re-use the little glass pots if you want.
  • You will receive a sample of another of their products with your order, which is nice since their products aren’t available in any stores where I live, and investing $25+ in something I might not like is hard to do!
What I really appreciate is that RMS isn’t one of those “natural” brands that excludes recognizable toxic ingredients but throws in a whole lot of hard-to-evaluate ingredients instead. RMS sticks to oils, butters and natural colorants that we can be almost certain have few (if any, really) harmful effects.

You can visit rmsbeauty.com for more information (or to make a purchase, if you feel inclined to do so. There is free shipping on orders over $25, which basically means free shipping on almost everything, since most products are $30+ 🙂 )

Hope that was helpful!

NerdyVegan has a YouTube channel!

21 Nov

Over the last year or so I’ve been doing a lot of research on safe/non-toxic cosmetics, household products, etc. This can get very overwhelming really fast, since there seems to be something bad in basically everything you use on a daily basis. Particularly troubling is the fact that all of this is having a visible impact on human health. So a few weeks ago I decided that I needed to share this info with as many people as I could; this is something a fair number of people have done, I admit, and generally in book format. I created the naturalcosmeticsnerd YouTube channel to communicate what I’ve learned in as easy-to-digest a format as possible. Like a lot of people, I don’t have enough time or attention to commit to reading long-winded blog posts (I am absolutely guilty of this, I can’t help but be drawn to more-is-more in terms of words), so I’m hoping short(-ish) videos will communicate this info in the best way.

Here’s a little intro I filmed to give an overview of the purpose of the channel. It cuts off short at the end because at that point I launched into another 7 minutes of discussion on web resources, so I chopped that part off and I’ll post it separately.


More on minerals and vitamins!

29 Oct

Last week I spoke about iron, so I thought it would be interesting to give you some info on some of the other essential and sometimes hard-to-find vitamins & minerals. Since there’s a lot to say about calcium, I’ll talk to you about that little sucker next week!

I love lists, so I’m just gonna give you the vitamins & minerals with their typical sources next to ’em:

B2: whole grains, mushrooms, almonds, leafy greens, yeast extracts

D: sunlight, D-fortified vegan margarine & some soy milks, supplements

Folate: wheat germ, raw/lightly-cooked leafy greens (brocoli, spinach, etc.), yeast, yeast extracts, nuts, peas, green “runner beans”, oranges, dates, avocados, whole grains

H (biotin) : legumes (soybeans, peanuts), green veggies

Iodine: seaweed, some veggies & grains depending on the iodine level in the soil

Phosphorus: legumes, potatoes, garlic

Potassium: leafy greens (spinach, lettuce), cruciferous veggies (brocoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage), bananas, potatoes, chick peas,

Zinc: wheat germ, whole grains (whole wheat bread, rice, oats), nuts, pulses (especially limas, pintos), tofu, soy protein, miso, peas, parsley, bean sprouts, pumpkin seeds, string beans

Fruit on display at La Boqueria market in Barc...

Image via Wikipedia

And the following are anti-oxidants! yay!:

Betacarotene – sweet potato, carrot, squash, pumpkin, peach, mango; spinach, savoy cabbage

Vitamin A – fortified oatmeal, fortified cereals, cantaloupe, mango, carrots, kale, peas, raw red pepper, spinach, winter squash, sweet potato

Vitamin C – lots of veggies (broccoli) and fruits (citrus fruits, tomato)

Vitamin E – nuts & grains; sunflower/corn/soy oils, mango, swiss chard, sweet potato

Lutein – leafy greens (spinach, kale, etc.)

Lycopene – tomatoes & tomato-based products (sauce, juice), watermelon, guava, papaya, apricot, red grapefruit

Selenium – rice, wheat germ, wheat bran, brazil nuts

Vegan, without the attitude

27 Oct

I’m not going to point my finger at any particular culprit, because even though I am fired up by a specific comment, the attitude I have trouble with is not uncommon among vegans (often newbies).

So, vegans are “enlightened”? Veganism is the ideal to which all humans should strive? I’m sorry, no and no. I chose to try my best at cutting out all animal products because I feel like it’s my contribution to maintaining the health of the planet and its inhabitants. I don’t think meat-eaters are monsters. I think everyone has the right to choose the path that brings them the most joy, because life is short. I don’t support selfish, wasteful behaviour, but most non-vegans I encounter don’t behave like that. In fact (believe it or not!) some environmental activists, some of the people doing the most they can to help our planet, eat… dairy! Meat, even!

So, while I believe that my choices are good and helpful, and that decreasing the general reliance on animal proteins would be beneficial, all I ask for from non-vegans is an open mind. Happily, for every bacon-loving BBQ-ing meat-maniac, there are many more who are open to meat alternatives, are participating in Meatless Mondays, and who are cutting back on animal products in general.

I don’t think we’ll get anywhere with a holier-than-thou attitude or defensive snark. The only way that someone will change their mind is by changing it her/himself. So why not bring vegan desserts next time you visit a friend or relative? Serve fabulous meatless, balanced meals to dinner guests? And don’t go on about how awesome it tastes without animal products! Exposure to the multitude of alternatives and their general deliciousness is usually enough to get someone thinking. Not that conversion is my goal, but because of my beliefs, I like to spread the love! I sound like a religious fanatic a little bit, lawwwwd.

Adios, before I really get myself in trouble!

20 ideas to help rejuvenate your body and mind

16 Sep

– detox your kitchen: throw out any item containing trans fats &/or that are high in sugar.

– book a night to talk to your mother, sibling, close friend, either by phone or in person: strengthening emotional bonds supports your immune system.

– wake up a bit earlier: use the time to go through your morning routine more calmly and mindfully.

– go for a walk 30 minutes after lunch &/or dinner, bring the family if you’ve got ’em.

– lift weights for 20 minutes at least twice a week, to strengthen your arms and shoulders.

– take time, every day, to do something for yourself, whether it’s reading a couple of pages of a book/newspaper/magazine, meditating, or listening to music you really enjoy.

– plan work-out dates with your friends: you’ll all benefit from the mutual encouragement.

– try to do as many errands as possible without a car.

– if you’ve got a dog or a cat, give it a belly rub: petting these animals lowers blood pressure and heightens your sense of well-being (unless kitty’s got claws and is moody).

– next weekend, plan an afternoon walk in a park, in the country, or in a quiet part of the city. Burn calories and calm your mind simultaneously.

– talk to your doctor about B-complex, coenzyme Q10 &/or alpha-lipoic acid supplements, if maintaining your complexion is a concern.

– get it on! Seriously, do it, it’s good for your cardiovascular health.

– snack smart: sunflower seeds, a seasonal fruit, a small handful of almonds or cashews, etc. Whole foods, not processed junk!

– look at yourself in the mirror, and smile.

– hit the stationary bicycle at your gym: 30 minutes’ll do ya.

– stretch! 20 minutes, twice a week.

– turn on some music and dance for 30 minutes.

– relax for 10 solid minutes: meditate, do a couple of simple yoga moves, or just do nothing at all. Just be.

– get outside! Go for a walk alone or with a friend. You could plan a post-work 30-minute-ish walk with a friend, very good for combatting stress.

– finally, you’ll sleep better if you turn off the TV and computer at least 30 minutes before bed time. Most sources say an hour, but I’m going easy on you (and myself; it’s hard!).