The Dirt on Spring Cleaning

The Dirt on Spring Cleaning + Products
WHAT ARE YOU CLEANING WITH?

Ahhh! Spring is suddenly in the air ☀️ and I don't know about you but I'm SO ready to open the windows and breathe in some fresh air!   Spring is the season of rejuvenation, new beginnings, maybe even some decluttering--out with old in with the new--which means it’s time to start thinking about our spring cleaning checklists 🖊  There’s just something about the nice weather that brings on motivation for a fresh clean start.  Before we reach for those cleaners and get to work, let’s do a little digging into those ingredients, shall we?

Did you know? In 2000, cleaning products were responsible for nearly 10% of all toxic exposures reported to U.S. Poison Control Centers, accounting for 206,636 calls. Of these, 120,434 exposures involved children under six who can swallow or spill cleaners stored or left open inside the home. With NO federal regulations on ingredients in household products, the only way we can protect our families is to learn how to read labels ourselves. And since WE ARE THE GATEKEEPERS TO OUR HOMES This is the perfect time to learn! 

Let’s take a look at the top 4 ingredients to avoid and why.

FRAGRANCE--UP FIRST, AND THE BIG ONE, and you've probably heard me teach about this often.  If not--take note 📝 
This first ingredient is a BIG ONE AND sadly it is in just about every household product that we use daily. Synthetic scents or “fragrances” represent an unidentified mixture of ingredients, including carcinogens, allergens, respiratory irritants, endocrine disruptors, neurotoxic chemicals, and environmental toxicants. You can find these artificial scents in all kinds of body care, cosmetic products, perfumes, air fresheners as well as candles, most cleaning materials, and laundry detergents.

Let’s talk about fragrance, or parfum or perfume or a million other names 😯  this Article shares the dangers of Fragrance. "Synthetic scents or “fragrance” represent an unidentified mixture of ingredients including carcinogens, allergens, respiratory irritants, endocrine disruptors, neurotoxic chemicals, and environmental toxicants. You can find these artificial scents in all kinds of body care and cosmetic products, as well as air fresheners, cleaning materials, and laundry detergents.

In general, there at least 3,000 ingredients that companies could use to form a product’s scent 😲 According to the online “Transparency List” put out by the International Fragrance Association, an industry trade group. It may seem unbelievable, but the FDA does not even require fragrance and cosmetic makers to disclose exactly what they are using to scent products. If companies are using truly natural ingredients, then why be shy? Many will say that their formulas are proprietary, and they don’t want other companies copying them. The FDA website also states how the agency cannot legally require companies to warn about allergens in cosmetics like they do with food.

Are you wondering why companies would continue to use synthetic scents if they’re so bad for our health? The answer is straightforward — they are cheap. Synthetic scents can be extremely cheap to give everything from shampoo to lotion to candles a desirable scent. Unfortunately, just because you enjoy a scent doesn’t mean it’s good for you." 💥 
source - https://draxe.com/health/dangers-synthetic-scents/

PARABENS/PHTHALATES
Parabens are preservatives that mimic estrogen-which is extremely concerning, harming our endocrine systems in so many ways.  Found in many cosmetics & personal care items. When combined with heregulin, a growth-promoting substance normally found in breast tissue, the effects are multiplied by 100x, contributing to breast cancer, tumor growth &"moobs" (man boobs). Phthalates are a low-cost endocrine-disrupting chemical that in lab studies has shown to interfere with hormone production in rats and mimic estrogen in human studies. Found in: plastic food packaging, lotions, skin moisturizers, fragrance, cleaners, glues, and nail polish. That's right friend, so many labels to read. 

SLS - SODIUM LAUREL SULFATE
This chemical is used to de-grease car engines. It is also added to many toothpastes, soaps, detergent, skin products... it's in just about everything. It damages the kidneys/liver, teeth, endocrine system, causes hair loss, cataracts, ulcers, major toxicity, headaches, nausea, coughing, congestion, and more. 

TRICLOSAN
An antibacterial agent registered as a pesticide by the EPA. Topical absorption has shown disturbances to the endocrine system and is believed to lead to birth defects and uncontrollable cell growth. Found in: soaps, deodorants, cosmetics, shave gel, first aid spray, kitchenware, and toys.

While there are many, many other ingredients that you will want to know about, these are the "TOP OFFENDERS." As you learn more further with this low tox living lifestyle, you will learn about so many more options + you may notice improvements in your wellness as time goes on.  This isn't something accomplished in a day so please start small and slow and before you know it, you'll know better, do better, be and feel better.  

Remember, "Rome Wasn't Built In A Day," and your journey of learning is just that, 
a journey.

I have a FUN + SIMPLE Spring Cleaning Challenge starting in April! 
7 Challenges in 10 Days 
with FANTASTIC info to easily do a swap out
I'm offering this all COMPLIMENTARY and with accountability
I'm so excited to link arms with you for this challenge so get ready 
C'mon friend, I got you....Lezzz DO IT!!!

Join ME here ⬇️⬇️⬇️⬇️⬇️

Yoga Mat Care

Yoga Mat Care
I get asked often how to clean/care for yoga mats.  Here are a few of my favorite DIY sprays to care, clean and disinfect your mat.   Bonus they smell amazing plus it sets the tone for prepping + sealing your yoga practice with aromatic benefits to cleanse and clear your mind + space.  

What you need:  Bottle, filtered water, witch hazel (optional), pure quality essential oils, label (optional)

I love and use these bottles for all the DIY things around my home.  First you'll decide on your size. 
 


Option1
Essential Oils

10-20 drops Peppermint
10-20 drops Lavender
10-20 drops Lemon
10-20 drops Eucalyptus  
10-20 drops Tea Tree 

Or add amount of drops to your liking and bottle size.   This combo is great for disinfecting, gentle on the skin and can be used to spritz yourself after your practice.  You could certainly just use a combo of two oils instead of all.  
I'd suggest Lemon, Lavender and Tea Tree.  
Shop options here 

After adding oils to bottle, fill bottle with equal parts Witch Hazel and filtered water.  Add cap.  Shake and spray.  Ahhhh Inhale the beautiful aroma.  Wipe yoga mat with gentle cloth.  Keep bottle handy in your yoga bag or work out area.  If you're outdoors, the combo will assist in pest control too and soothe your skin and tired muscles.  

The wonderful thing is that these essential oils will last a long time and go a long way.  You can use these bottles of oils for so many other options as well, such as skin support, add to your diffuser, use for cleaning and so much more.  Ask me for more info on uses for these oils! 

Option 2 

Thieves Spray 
Lightweight, affordable and kills the germs! Bonus--it smells like Christmas 

Option 3 

My personal favorite is DIY smudge spray.  Not only does it have disinfecting qualities it's cleanses / smudges our personal space without having to burn.  

DIY Smokeless Smudge Spray 
Herbs have played an integral role in many cultures and religions since ancient times. The practice of burning sacred herbs is common in rituals, ceremonies, and meditation practices. 
Smudging refers to burning specific dried herbs and allowing the smoke to purify the air. Traditionally, smudging is used to cleanse a space energetically. The intention of this practice is to clear away negative energy while inviting positive energy and clarity in. 
Smudge your home using essential oils.  You will love this smokeless DIY smudge spray with chosen Sage, Palo Santo, and Rosemary essential oils for this recipe. Here’s why!
Sage
Sage is widely recognized as the most commonly used herb for smudging. It has been used traditionally for its clarifying properties. Sage essential oil emits a strong, spicy, clarifying, and uplifting aroma when used aromatically.
Palo Santo
Palo Santo is considered a sacred wood to many. Native to South America, the name of this oil can be translated to “holy wood” in Spanish. Palo Santo has a warm, woodsy aroma with subtle mint and citrus notes. Its inspiring fragrance can be used to create a cleansing and refreshing atmosphere. Young Living’s Palo Santo essential oil comes from the Finca Botanica Farm in Ecuador.
Rosemary
Rosemary’s familiar scent and versatility make it a Young Living favorite. This well-loved botanical is native to Mediterranean regions. Its complex, woodsy aroma can help create an energizing environment and promote a sense of clarity.
Get them here Smudge bundle 

DIY Smudge Spray:
• Water
• ¼ cup witch hazel
• 15 drops of each oil: Sage, Palo Santo, and Rosemary
How to:
 Use a 4 oz. glass spray bottle or larger
Add essential oils to bottle 
add equal parts witch hazel + water 
 Add cap + Shake well
Spray 



  
I'd love to hear your chosen option.  
Wishing you Love + Light ✨


What to look for in your products

What to look for in your products
What I love about a quick DIY perfume, air freshener or linen spray is that I get to decide what goes in my home.  I mean I am the gatekeeper.  Just because the tv commercial or store shelf promotes it does not mean it's good for me.  I'm so happy I've learned how to read ingredients, research what they are and make a choice that best suits me and my family.  Now that I have become an ingredient snob, we no longer suffer from sinus infections, harsh coughs, headaches, rashes and a host of other things "we thought were normal".  

It all started with food first, but that's another chapter.  This one is about products.  I love that one bottle of plant blood can not only support our health, mind, body, but also do some cleaning, cooking and make other products I no longer have to buy from the store.  Like cleaners, perfumes, air fresheners, goo gone, linen sprays, etc.  

First and foremost, if your product says the word "fragrance" in the ingredient list, say NO! That one word alone can have a whole host of harsh toxic ingredients in the product.  A few words to steer clear from in your products include but not limited to include: 
parabens (look for words with methyl, ethyl, butyl)
alcohols
chlorine
aluminum (heavy metal)
phthalates (plastics)
talc
ceteareth-20
PABA
anything synthetic
dyes
and preservatives.  

So what do I use in place of some of these ingredients you ask?  Great questions...organic vodka, witch hazel, filtered water, seed to seal guaranteed essential oils, medical grade diffusers, and lots of fun bottles and labels! I hope this helps you on your start to choosing toxin free products.  

Always reach out to me at livewellwithmichelle@live.com or check out my clean products choices I use for my family.   
I'd be happy to do a cabinet consult with you where I walk you through a cabinet sweep or product swaps.  

Living Well, 
Michelle 

Fancy and Fragrant

 Fancy and Fragrant

Once upon a time not that long ago I had the most prestige collection of all the high end department store fragrances. I’d walk around smelling like Dayton’s (I mean Macy’s) exploded on me. I never understood why some people complained. Well now I know. All those toxins bottled up in pretty containers. Yeah. Not good.  I now cannot walk by a department store perfume counter or even the cleaner aisle at Target.  

I’m so grateful I now choose to save major bucks and support my health by creating my own customized beautifully crafted perfumes, air fresheners, linen sprays, and diffusers with blends in place of candles and the like. Without harsh and harmful chemicals. I know also know these gems support my wellbeing, body and mind while looking and smelling pretty. 


I’m so excited to be back teaching about wellness and host my first perfume party of this year.  This is where I share how to look for ingredients, what they mean and the effects they can have on overall health, wellbeing and environment.  


I invite you to learn to read your ingredients on your products and ask questions. Where does your fancy fragrance or cleaner come from (also I've learned anything with the word 'fragrance' listed in it's ingredients is just NO bueno!). What’s in it?  And what is it doing to your health over the long haul?   


Click here for more on the products I choose... And when you’re interested in learning more or hosting your own perfume party, doing a cabinet sweep, or product swaps, contact me.  


Living Well with Michelle 


Why I Dry Brush

Why I Dry Brush
Have you dry brushed?  It's been a practice of mine for many years.  I love the benefits and how I feel afterwards.  
As with anything, consistency is key.  
Dry brushing is more known as an Ayurvedic practice.  Regardless I believe it is a beautiful, simple health and beauty regime.   Benefits of dry brushing include stimulation of lymphatic and circulatory systems, release of toxins, exfoliation of superficial skin cells, rejuvenate and stimulate the body, and relax and soothe skin. 


What you need: 
A natural fiber dry brush with or without handle.  You can find them at many beauty supply stores or beauty departments and are fairly inexpensive at under $10.  
The one I have is here: https://amzn.to/3z7QHUl

What I recommend: 
Incorporate 1-3 times a week before shower or bath.  Morning or night.  Consistency is key! 

Start at your feet and work your way up towards the heart. Always flow your dry brush toward the heart for detoxification. 
I like to start at my right foot and work all the way up my leg in three's on each section of my leg, then from the waist up to armpit, work across toward heart, then hold an arm up and start at hand working down to arm pit again in three's, and repeat on other side.  If your brush has a handle, do your back side or have a loved one do this for you.  Again working in three strokes upward toward the head.  Always use a very gentle mild pressure, not rubbing.   
Check out my YouTube video here: https://youtu.be/FCzjuu1HQ9E

Next, shower or bath.  Afterwards, apply your favorite nourishing body oils.  If you have a sluggish lymphatic or circulatory system, I love and recommend CelLite Magic massage oils.   Genesis Body Lotion or my DIY Glow Skin Serum which contains the finest oils of CBD, rose, helichrysum, carrot seed, lavender, Frankincense, Valor, Copaiba and more are perfect nourishing products.  You can get these essentials here: https://livewellwithmichelleyl.lifestepseo.com

Avoid dry brushing if you have: 
Sensitive skin
Wounds
Skin Conditions
Inflammation 
Sun burn 

Dry Brushing is a wonderful component to a healthy lifestyle, detox program and after a good work out as well.  
I'd love to hear your experiences with dry brushing.  

Join my free Facebook community of women for more middle aged lifestyle benefits here https://www.facebook.com/groups/442353096999687


 
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