I Visited An Integrated Bodyworker — Here’s What Happened

I laid flat on my back, legs splayed out in front of me. Juliet Maris – a total stranger up until thirty minutes prior – hovered overhead, encouraging me to pretend like I was stopping a flow of urine. I tightened up in a way that felt appropriate. “Am I doing this right?” I asked hopefully. She smiled, “Well, I can’t exactly see into your uterus. How do you feel?” I released a big belly breath of air and laughed. This was going to be interesting.

 

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I’m Becoming a Doula

“What the heck is a doula?” This is the response I got from friends and family when I told them I was signing up for a “doula workshop.” Don’t get me wrong: my loved ones are used to my oddities. My recommendations to snack on coconut oil as a way to increase happiness, my post-grad decision to spend two months at an ashram in India instead of finding a job, my admittedly luddite tendency to punctuate conversations with dreamy ramblings about how we should all move to a scenic pasture don’t exactly scream “normal.” But this whole doula situation seemed to really throw everyone for a loop. If you’re anything like the wonderful people in my circles – you’re probably also wondering what a doula is. I’m here to clarify.

 

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Dear Natural Beauty Brands, Show Us Your Beauty Cabinets

I’ve been using this natural deodorant I really like. I’m shocked by how much I like it, and whenever that happens, I want to tell everyone. But I’ve been really hesitant, for a few reasons. The first is that I want to formulate a deodorant for S.W. someday. In fact, I’ve been working on it for a couple of years. In second fact, I’m usually buying other people’s deodorants as research. I want to see who is making great natural deodorant, and I want to make sure that ours is different and better (or at least not worse).

 

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Yes, Naturals “Work” – Here’s Why

When I was 16, the standards by which I measured a skincare product’s efficacy were sort of twisted. If it burned or tingled when I applied it, I felt it was “working” – like, really, really well. If it had a strong chemical smell (hello, Noxzema!) or produced a super-foamy, squeaky-clean feeling, then I was particularly delighted. And if it claimed to employ some kind of super-cool technology to assault my pores and demolish my pimples, then I was totally on board.

 

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Your Skin Cleanse Cheat Sheet

Thinking about doing a skin cleanse? Well, good for you! I know the prospect can be daunting, though, so I thought I’d offer a few tips to make it easier. Perhaps you’ve read the book but need a little nudge, or perhaps you haven’t but you googled “Do sliced cucumbers really make my eyes less puffy?” and landed here, confused. (The answer is yes, they do. And welcome!)

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Three Things That Might Be Causing Your Skin to Freak Out – And How to Help

We’ve all bemoaned good or bad hair days, but how about good or bad skin days? To me, there’s far more day-to-day variation in one’s skin than one’s hair, plus far less control. I mean, when I am having a bad hair day, the cause is clear (I haven’t brushed and/or washed my hair) and the answer is equally clear (I must wash, then brush, my hair). Yet when I am having a bad skin day, the answer and solution seem inexplicable. What went wrong? How can I fix it?

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Go with Your Gut – Seriously

I’m sure you’ve been told time and time again to “go with your gut” and for good reason, too! Our gut bacteria – also known as our microbiome – support the healthy functioning of everything from our digestive tract to our immune system, all of which undoubtedly influence the appearance of our skin.

In fact, as S.W. Basics’ Adina Grigore notes in her book, Skin Cleanse, a healthy amount of bacteria just might be the key to clear, healthy skin.  She explains, “…people with healthy bacteria on their skin break out less often than people with less bacteria. Studies have shown that people with clear skin have 20 percent more bacteria production than those with acne.”

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The Only Detox I Need This Holiday Season

Ah, the holidays. It’s the most wonderful and my most shameful time of the year, a period of four-ish weeks where I binge on white wine spritzers and mini weenie dogs while battling sleep deprivation and descending slowly in credit card debt (all in unusually festive garb). Given the general overload of consumption and the head-spinning amount of activities that happen during this time period, it’s understandable that I – and many of you, I’m sure – crave a “detox” by the end of the month.

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Introducing S.W. Basics DIY Skincare Essentials

If you don’t know me, let me explain something. I don’t cook (my husband does, phew). I don’t craft. I don’t sew. I don’t fix things. Ikea furniture gives me meltdowns. I firmly believe two things: store-bought products exist for a reason (so we don’t have to DIY them), and there are a lot of amazing companies out there who make stellar products, by hand, in the U.S., and just like anybody, I like to buy those products.

When you think about it, it’s pretty crazy that S.W. Basics started out as my DIY project.

Seven years ago I started making my own skincare in my kitchen. But not in a “Yay I’m so excited DIY is the TRUTH!” kind of way. It was more like, “Ugh kill me is this really the only option?”

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