Au Naturel Essence

All natural treats for body and soul


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The Sunshine Award

I am proud to say that I have been nominated for a Sunshine Award.  Blogger awards are a great way to share a little bit about yourself, and to pay it forward by calling attention to other great blogs.  I am tickled pink that Ashlee over at Willfully Disobedient chose to include my blog on her list of nominees!  Thank you, Ashlee!

Sunshine Award

Sunshine Award

The Rules

  • Acknowledge the nominating blogger.
  • Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Answer 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you.
  • List 11 bloggers.  They should be bloggers you believe deserve some recognition and a little blogging love!
  • Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer & let all the bloggers know they’ve been nominated. You cannot nominate the blogger that nominated you.

11 Random Facts

  1. I love baking and cooking.
  2. I am a bookworm at heart.
  3. I once jumped out of a plane, willingly!  I was sky diving.
  4. I dream about travelling and always look forward to my next trip.
  5. I have donated my hair twice.  It’s been used to make wigs for cancer patients.
  6. I am slowly removing the chemicals from my family’s daily life.  It’s a slow process.
  7. My favorite workout these days is Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30.
  8. I really want to be fluent in Spanish, but have so far to go!
  9. I plan to perfect my skin care products and one day sell them.
  10. Since I was 10, I have always had a small business venture on the side.
  11. I volunteered at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.

Ashlee’s Questions

– If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live and why?
I would like in a place where winter barely brushes up against the freezing mark. I love my city, but I always have a hard time adjusting to the -20 degree days in the winter months.
– Who is your favorite actor/actress? Why?
I love watching Denzel Washington.  He always gives such a convincing and authentic performance.
– What song always cheers you up when you’re sad?
With my little son, I sing a lot of children’s songs.  They all cheer me up – everything from Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star to When you’re Happy and You Know It.
– What is your favorite toy from your childhood?
I loved playing with dolls.
– What is your least favorite thing about being an adult?
There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with being an adult.  Is there a way to pass some of that onto someone else?
– Someone is going to take you out to dinner, any restaurant you like. Where would you go?
My husband and I have a favorite Lebanese restaurant in town.  It’s not a fancy or expensive place.  The food is great and the atmosphere is welcoming.  We head there anytime we have a chance for a treat.
– If you have kids, how did you decide on names?
We chose names that other family members already had.  My son is named after my husband and after my grandfather.
– What is your favorite holiday?
I love Christmas.  It’s a great time for family.  I also love to give gifts!
– What is your favorite book?
Oh boy – I don’t think I could name just one!  I love reading!  I recently read Prisoner of Tehran and I loved it.  I’m not sure if it’s my all time favorite, but I definitely recommend it!
– How much sleep do you absolutely have to have to function?
Since getting pregnant, I’ve learned to function with a lot less sleep than ever before.  I can get by for a few days on 4 hours of sleep.  After that, the wear and tear starts to show!
– What is your favorite way to de-stress?
Working out is the best way for me to relax.  If I can’t do that, a good movie with a bowl of popcorn will do the trick!

11 Questions for my Nominees:

  1. What is your favorite food?
  2. How do you maintain balance in your life?
  3. What is/are your favorite brand(s) of makeup?
  4. Do you speak a second language?  If so, what is it?
  5. Where is your dream vacation?
  6. How do you get healthy when you have a cold or a flu?
  7. What is more important in a beauty product – packaging or price?
  8. What do you love most about blogging?
  9. Have you ever had the chance to meet a follower of your blog that you didn’t know before you started writing your blog?
  10. What is your favorite way to exercise?
  11. Do you have a bucket list and if yes, how much progress have you made on it?

And My 11 Nominees Are:

Thank you again to Ashlee for the nomination!
Congratulations to my 11 nominees! I hope you’ll find some time to answer the questions so I can get to know each of you a little bit better.
If nothing else, please check out these 11 blogs.  They are all full of great information!


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Homemade Deodorant

After many years of searching for a store-bought deodorant that works for my body, I have resigned myself to admitting defeat.  And in order to pick myself up, I decided to (finally) learn how to make my own!

Inspiration!

A few months ago, I was browsing some of my favorite blogs and I saw a post on Homemade Wellbeing by Kristina.  She had written about making her own deodorant and how successful it had been for her.  She made it sound so easy and I was inspired to finally get off my butt and do something about my deodorant situation.  Check out her post here!

Off I went to the Crunchy Betty website to read about making deodorant at home.  I almost fell off my chair when I saw how easy it is!  With nothing in my way, I was off to the races.  Click here to see the recipe that I used.

Making my Own Deodorant

It was really easy.  I followed the recipe on the Crunchy Betty site to the letter and I was not disappointed.

First, I took some coconut oil and some sweet almond oil and infused with dried chamomile and calendula flowers.  She recommends that you leave it alone to infuse for a couple of weeks.  I ended up getting a little busy and it sat there for about 7 weeks.  It wasn’t a problem.  If anything, the oil came out with a stronger infusion of the flowers.

Infused Oil

Infused Oil

Second, I strained the oil.  I ended up getting about 8 tablespoons of oil.

Strained Oil

Strained Oil

Third, I mixed in equal parts of arrowroot powder and baking soda.  You use 1/4 cups and 2 tablespoons of each one.   Stir well.

Homemade Deodorant

Homemade Deodorant

And Voila, you’re done!

Testing my Own Deodorant

It was easy to make, but did it work?

I tested it for 10 days.  I applied it once each day, in the morning after my shower.

During that time, I continued with my daily routine just like normal.  This included things like my Jillian Michaels workouts (there’s a lot of sweating involved in those!) and long walks in the sun with my little boy.  I even used it when I was around other people!

This deodorant worked for me for every single minute of the ten-day trial. That’s more than I can say for any of the other store-bought deodorants I have ever tried.  It simple works perfectly with my body!

I did find that the mixture separated in the jar throughout the day.  So, I kept a small spatula on hand so that I could give it a vigorous stir before applying it in the morning.

Three Jars of Homemade Deodorant

Three Jars of Homemade Deodorant

One Huge Step Forward

Finding a natural deodorant to use has been a long time coming for me.  I’ve learned how to make many of my own skin care products, like lotion, cream and soap, over the past couple of years.  I’m so excited to have a product that works for me.  It’s got a handful of ingredients, it’s easy to make and most importantly, it works for me!  The only drawback for me with this deodorant is the need to mix it up again each morning.  Perhaps I’ll have to keep experimenting with the recipe.

Do you use a homemade or natural deodorant?  If you do, what’s YOUR secret for the perfect product?