Here in Michigan, there seems to be a current struggle between winter moving out and spring settling in. Thankfully, I know how this one ends…winter gets the boot and spring will soon take over with flowers, leaves, green grass and plenty of glorious sunshine. However, since today there is still a dusting of snow and ridiculous temperatures that keep even the birds from singing, it seems like a great day to share a few of the things that I have been loving lately. A little retail distraction from the winter that is dragging its feet.

 

Think Dirty – This is a free app that I was recently introduced to and I am loving! Basically, you can scan or type in a barcode for cosmetics and personal care products and it will give you a “dirty meter” rating as well as detailed information on ingredients, potential health impacts, and even suggest cleaner options. I have always known that the ingredients that we put IN our bodies impact our health, but it wasn’t until around a year ago that I became more aware of the effects of what we put ON our bodies. Obviously, cleaner products often come at a higher cost because of the higher quality of ingredients, manufacturing, etc. For our family, there has to be a balance of making the best choices possible but also still keeping within our budget. I try to choose items with the best rating when shopping for any products that I am putting on my skin and leaving there. This includes, face and body lotion, make-up, and deodorant. If it is being absorbed into my body for 12+ hours, I want to make sure it isn’t a potential carcinogen or irritant. Once I started researching this area, I was shocked at how few regulations there were for the health and beauty industry. Seriously, kind of scary! This app is a great tool to at least raise your awareness for what is in the products you and your family use on a daily basis. Obviously, there are about 5 billion different beauty products (or so it seems!), so they are continuing to update the app and add to their product list. This app will only get better as more products continue to be rated!

Beautycounter – It seems appropriate that next on my list I mention one of my favorite companies for safe products. I discovered Beautycounter last year when I began researching safer options for myself and my family. Their products are amazing, and I love their mission to get safer products into the hands of everyone while also working at the legislative level to raise the standards for all of the health and beauty industry. They aren’t just trying to sell their products…they are trying to be a force of change! All their products will score low (safe) using the app I mentioned above. Their Hydrating Body Lotion, Nourishing Night Cream, and Tint Skin Foundation are three products that I invest in because they stay on my skin for hours at a time (not to mention they are amazing!). I also LOVE the Charcoal Cleansing Bar and Mask. Charcoal is an amazing and natural way to draw impurities out of your skin without being overly drying. For my skin, these two charcoal products were definitely game changers and for a fraction of what other products cost from a dermatologist! You can check out more of their products at my friend Cecilia’s PAGE and feel free to ask me any questions!

GYMBOSS miniMAX Timer – I love this thing! There are different ways you can customize it to keep time for your workouts and it keeps you from having to always be watching a clock. When I do HIIT workouts or anything with intervals, I can set it accordingly and it will beep and/or vibrate when the interval is up. The workouts I teach often have 1 minute work:10 seconds rest and the GYMBOSS lets me set up the two intervals with customizable time. I bought the arm band as well and love that I can set it, strap it on, and go!

Good Earth Sweet and Spicy Tea – I think this is one of my all-time favorite teas and it can be found at most grocery stores. Sipping a hot cup of this is so soothing and somehow feels like a luxury. For these cold winter days, this tea is a gift.

Synergy Organic Kombucha – Just the name Kombucha is enough to make you skeptical, but there are so much healthy goodness in one little drink. Basically, kombucha is fermented tea that has naturally occurring probiotics that aid with digestion and promote healthy gut bacteria. I love the Synergy brand the best because of taste, organic ingredients, and no added sugars. If you give kombucha a try, be sure to read the label to see if they have added sugar, how much, and in what form. There are a number of brands that add Stevia, but Stevia tastes weird to me and I generally try to avoid it. Personal preference. My favorite flavor is Gingerberry! You can find it at Meijer, Fresh Thyme, some deli style restaurants, and even Door to Door Organics. If you haven’t given kombucha a try, you should treat yourself (and your tummy!) to a bottle. Just keep in mind it is fermented, so it has a bit more of a tangy taste. One bottle usually lasts me two days.

OluKai Pehuea – These shoes arrived last week and are better than I hoped. They fit true to size (maybe a bit narrow which is actually a good thing for me) and are the perfect blend of comfort, support, and sporty style. They look great with skinny jeans and leggings and the mesh will be perfect when the weather warms up. I chose the charcoal grey but they come in a variety of fun colors as well!

Gazelle T-shirt – This is such a cute shirt and perfectly blends my undying love for running and Michigan. It even is blue, my favorite color…I feel like they made it just for me! The shirt is super soft and since it is more of a fitted style, I went with a medium. If you haven’t been to Gazelle Sports, you really need to check them out! Their staff is amazing, excellent customer service, and they are where I refer all my clients for finding the perfect running shoes. I swear you leave the store feeling inspired to stay active and live healthy…every.single.time.

Nothing To Prove – I am only about a third of the way through this book and I have already been so encouraged. My perfectionist nature and insecurities have created years of striving to measure up. I struggle with a self-imposed fear that I am not enough. I think it is a message that would resonate with so many people and it has been very empowering to embrace. Jennie Allen’s perspective really hit home with me when she wrote, “I am realizing it’s not my curse that I believe I am not enough; it’s my sin that I keep trying to be.” It is a beautiful book about finding freedom to be bold, take risks, and live out our God-given purpose with nothing to prove.

 

There you have it! A list of my current favorite things. What have you been loving lately? Feel free to leave a comment and let me know!

A Few of My Favorite Things

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