Thursday Plantation essential oils review, DIY ideas, & giveaway

Monday, June 20, 2016

Thursday Plantation essential oils review

The products: Thursday Plantation 100% Pure Eucalyptus Oil, Tea Tree Oil, and Lavender Oil

I like to go the natural route whenever I can, so I’ve been playing around a lot with essential oils this year. In a rather fortuitous turn of events, I was sent this lovely kit from Thursday Plantation just weeks after I fell in love with tea tree oil, and I’ve been using it non-stop in all sorts of ways ever since!

Thursday Plantation is an Australian company that sells essential oils (these three key oils, plus smaller aromatherapy oils like rosewood and patchouli), ready-made products (mostly things with tea tree and aloe), and facial oils. I’m just focusing on these three for the moment, but I’m excited to branch out someday… maybe when I’m braver.

Lavener oil diy beauty

The one thing that always kills me about essential oils is how expensive they can be, so it was awesome to see how affordable and high-quality these oils are. They’re 100% pure and packaged in amber glass, and they come in a range of sizes. The eucalyptus oil, which is great for sanitizing things around the house, comes in 100 and 200ml versions as well; the tea tree comes in smaller sizes (perfect if you’re just going to be using it as an acne treatment); and the lavender oil comes in a 50 ml for those of you who want to get really soothed.

(Not me. I’m not here for the soothing at allll.)

Thursday Plantation essential oils review sizing

Overall, the Thursday Plantation range is more affordable than something like Aura Cacia and more expensive than NOW Solutions, but I prefer it over both: Aura Cacia sells some excellent organic oils, but I find they have trouble with quality control, and NOW Solutions sells really affordable carrier oils, but their more delicate oils can be questionable–their rosehip oil, for instance, is utter crap. Again, I haven’t tried the full Thursday Plantation lineup so my opinion may change someday, but I was very happy with the quality of these!

Thursday Plantation has a 100 Uses for TP campaign going on that’s pretty cool–as you might have guessed, it’s a list of 100 things that you can use these three oils for (sadly not a list of 100 uses for toilet paper), but here are some of my favourites.

Thursday Plantation Tea Tree Oil review

Tea tree oil ($23.99 CAD/50 ml) 

Tea tree oil is Thursday Plantation’s big thing, and they do it very well. It’s 100% pure and contains at least 30% more terpinen-4-ol (the part of tea tree oil that makes it germicidal) than is required by international standards, so even a single drop is a very effective antiseptic.

According to Thursday Plantation, tea tree oil “inhibits a broad spectrum of bacteria and fungi […] and does not inhibit normal cell growth,” so it’s safe to use on small cuts and stuff to clean the area without a broad-spectrum antibiotic.

  • Great for treating pimples and bug bites
  • Treating infections like athlete’s foot or boils
  • Used as a household cleaner
  • When diluted (I used 3 drops in 1 cup of filtered water), tea tree makes a very effective alcohol- and mint-free mouthwash. Beware, however: it’s very bitter and not for internal use, so swish and spit!
  • Helps deodorize things like shoes and surfaces when mixed with a few tablespoons of baking soda
  • Natural analgesic (like a mild clove oil)
  • And, finally… I’m NOT a doctor, but I get recurrent yeast infections and the antifungals my doctor was giving me were messing up my gut flora without helping my yeast infections one bit. I’ve been using tea tree oil (1 drop diluted in 1 ml virgin coconut oil to make 3 small suppositories) to treat my yeast infections, and it literally cleared up my season-long yeast infection overnight. If you’re having trouble too, do a little research–for me, using a natural antifungal was a far better option than pharmaceuticals, but I’m just one example!

Thursday Platnation eucalyptus oil review

Eucalyptus oil ($9.99 CAD/50 ml)

I love the scent of eucalyptus oil, so when I found out that it kills 99.9% of household germs and helps relieve cold symptoms, I was pretty thrilled.

  • Making use of those 99.9% germ killer properties & cleaning countertops, spills, floors, and sinks in lieu of chemical cleaners with artificial fragrances!
  • A couple drops in a bottle of distilled water as a tasty mouth rinse
  • Used diluted as an oil rub for muscle aches or colds
  • Used in a diffuser or humidifier for a cold
  • I haven’t tried these yet, but I’ve heard that eucalyptus oil can remove grease and tar stains, and is great added to the wash to freshen up your clothes!

Thursday Plantation lavender oil review

Lavender oil ($19.99 CAD/25 ml)

Thursday Plantation lavender oil is distilled only from Lavandula angustifolia flowering herb tops, and it smells lovely.

  • Used diluted or in a bath to help treat eczema or psoriasis
  • Dabbed onto insect bites to help soothe them
  • A few drops on a felt dryer ball to freshen laundry!

The verdict + a giveaway!!

I haven’t tried the more delicate oils from the Thursday Plantation range yet, but I was very happy with these three. The quality is great and the brand’s pricing is on par with something like Desert Essence, and I love that Thursday Plantation uses amber glass to keep their oils safe & sound.

In fact, I’ve been getting such great use out of these oils that I wanted to share the love with YOU, so I reached out to Thursday Plantation’s PR firm here in Canada to ask if they had an extra Essentials kit to share with a lucky reader. And guess what? They did!

So, if you want to get your inner DIY maven on, enter using the widget below. This giveaway will be open to Canadian residents over the age of majority (or with parental consent) for two weeks and close at 11:59 PM MST on July 3rd. Good luck!

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Kérastase L’Incroyable Blowdry giveaway! | New This Week

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Kerastase L'Incroyable Blowdry lotion giveaway

Happy Sunday night, friends! I just have a short little post to share with you guys today — a giveaway of the brand new Kérastase L’Incroyable Blowdry lotion, which launched today.

L’Incroyable Blowdry is meant to help shape your hair and make your blowout feel clean for days, which is something that I–I am so lazy when it comes to my hair–can really get behind. It’s a “reshapable heat lotion,” and it’s designed to let you style and re-style without the need to wash between stylings — you just need to add heat.

(And not too much heat, either! This lotion offers heat protection up to 450°F/230°C, but you only need to take it to 150˚C to reshape.)

L'Incroyable Blowdry Anja Rubik

Anja Rubik, styled and restyled by Luigi Murenu using Kérastase L’Incroyable Blowdry.

Every formula that comes out nowadays has its hook, and L’Incroyable Blowdry’s is that it uses Stimuli Responsive Styling (developed at the L’Oreal Applied Research Labs) and a “reshapable microwax technology” to allow you to re-shape your hair up to four times before washing.

In other words… it uses beeswax (which has a melting point of 62-64˚C) to lock your style in place until you heat-style your hair again.

Kerastase L'Incroyable Bow Dry reshapable heat lotion giveaway

To enter the giveaway…

If you want to be one of the first to try out this new Kérastase product, you’re in luck! I’m giving away a bottle to celebrate its launch, and the giveaway is open to all Canadian residents over 18. Just use the widget below to enter!

This giveaway closes on May 15th at 11:59 PM MST. 
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The ingredients »

BS Atelier Small G-Spot Ella & White Handcuffs review, photos | Small Business Saturdays (well, Sundays)

Sunday, April 17, 2016

BS Atelier leather wrist restraints review

The product: BS Atelier G-Spot Ella Blue (Small) & White Handcuffs

Today’s Small Business Saturdays feature showcases something other than a skincare brand! (Cue cheers, clapping, and a lone sobbing skincare fanatic.)

Uh, anyhow. Today’s feature brand is BS Atelier, a wonderful, sex-positive Spanish company with just the most beautiful, nostalgic, tongue-in-cheek aesthetic. They make both realistic toys as well as ones covered in stripes, rainbows, splatters, and even cow print, so there are lots of options on both sides of the spectrum!

BS Atelier review - packaging

Even the BS Atelier packaging is cooler than you.

BS is nice white leather handcuffs review

BS Atelier Handcuffs – White

BS Atelier Handcuffs (47.0 €)

BS Atelier focuses mostly on rope bondage, but I’ve loved their handcuffs for ages. Their leather cuffs are very simple and versatile, and no attention to detail is skimped on. They feature a loop-back closure for a custom fit, and the leather itself is pretty nice — it’s unfinished, so it pills a little at first, but it’s lightweight, flexible, and really comfortable. 

Mostly, though, I love that these cuffs don’t look like hard bondage gear. I love the hardcore BDSM aesthetic as much as the next queer girl, but personally, I just can’t pull it off! I thrive in a bedroom that can be giggled in, and I think it’s fantastic that the BS Atelier team is offering such a cheery alternative for those who are into bondage but not necessarily the whole hardcore vibe.

(And I mean, how gorgeous would these be as outerwear?? I love how they’re suggestive, but not so obvious that you’d be likely to make people uncomfortable.)

BS Atelier G-spot Ella small, leather handcuffs review

My one caveat: Before you buy, there’s one last thing to note: The double snap hook that attaches these cuffs together is absolutely terrible! It’s stiff and poorly-made, and I find that you have to pull down on the bar itself rather than on the sliding bit in order to get them open.

So, if you’re planning on clasping these together, plan accordingly. Otherwise, just make sure to care for these cuffs as you would any piece of leather (treat them kindly and keep them out of major wet works) and you should be good.

BS Atelier clasp

BS Atelier hardware – this is me pushing down on the clasp!!!

BS Atelier Ella Blue small review

BS Atelier G-Spot Ella Dildo in Blue – Small

BS Atelier G-Spot Ella Blue (70.0 €/on sale at SheVibe)

I was also lucky to be able to test the matching G-Spot Ella in Blue thanks to the lovely team at BS Atelier. (The small size is featured here; it’s available in S, M, and L at BS Atelier or just M through SheVibe). The striped Ella Blue print just as fun and uplifting as the white cuffs, and the two would make an absolutely charming gift together!

BS Atelier G-spot dildo review

BS Atelier G-Spot Ella Blue review

There are two tiny flaws in this dildo; a little circle next to the BS and a fine line in the red stripe. However, both are completely unnoticeable in use, and there is no seam anywhere on the product.

The Ella is hand-poured from 100% silicone and measures 5.5 inches (14 cm) tall. It’s 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) wide at the base and 1.1 inches (2.8 cm) wide at its narrowest. I know that some bloggers aren’t fans of the BS Atelier silicone, but I really like it — it’s soft but springy and has a slightly velvety finish, kind of like a bouncy ball.

The Small G-Spot Ella is too short for comfortable use in a strap-on, but it’s pleasantly squishy and holds its curve better than my Tantus or VixSkin toys. And, even though the curve is relatively unpronounced in the S, it feels absolutely mild-melting. I can only imagine how lovely it would be in the L.

» I would definitely recommend BS Atelier’s G-Spot Ella line, but I’d advise ordering the medium or large size instead!

BS Atelier handcuffs review white

The verdict?

The BS Atelier White Handcuffs are a touch pricy, but man, are they ever beautiful. They’re bright, lightweight, and comfortable, and would be a gorgeous accessory to pair with a summer dress… and take into the bedroom with you at the end of the day. That being said, I expected better quality hardware at $53 USD (ish), and I really hope to see these get even better in the future! (A vegan option, for instance, would be just amazing.)

The G-Spot Ella, on the other hand, is a total must-have. The soft, springy texture of BS Atelier’s silicone and the small head on the Ella work well to offer just blissful stimulation, and while the Ella doesn’t feel lifelike in the way that something like VixSkin does, I think BS Atelier might just do a g-spot curve even better!

Availability: 47.0 € for the cuffs; 70.0 €/$63 USD for the Ella. (Note: all BS Atelier toys are currently 15% off at SheVibe until Sunday night!)

Additional photos & more »

New This Week: Silicone-free colour-correcting & custom foundation palettes!

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Custom color correcting foundation palette

It’s always interesting to see which trends are going to rear their heads each season, but I can’t remember the last time something hit quite as hard as colour-correcting. It’s a technique that has been around for decades, of course, but it used to be tough to get your hands on really good colour-correcting products.

Now, though? Now colour correctors seem like they’re a dime a dozen. You can pick up tinted primers (Make Up For Ever and Clinique do some really popular ones, and I hear the NYX dupes aren’t all that shabby); redness neutralizers (everyone still always says green, but I swear yellow is what you really want); even brightening powders (in violet or the classic banana yellow) to even out whatever tones your foundation isn’t quite covering. 

Despite the current trend, however, it is still next to impossible to find a good colour corrector that’s silicone-free. So, I thought I’d share with you guys what I’ve been doing for colour-correcting!

I really love using theatre foundations on skin that’s picky about silicones, because the older formulas (always make sure to check first) tend to be creamy, ‘cone-free, and cheap. The colour palette that I put together for myself features samples of products from Camera Ready Cosmetics to keep the costs even lower; the half-empty pans look a little dingy, but because I rarely actually finish products, it was a good choice for me.

(I’ve had this palette for about a year and I haven’t needed to replenish any of the correctors yet, so I guess I wasn’t wrong!)

Silicone free foundation palette

Silicone-free theatre foundation review palette

For anyone making their own colour correcting palette or bruise kit, this entire palette cost me about $20 USD, and works well for my NC15-ish skin. It includes:

Keep reading! »

Are you a blogger? Come help us ALL be fairly paid! | The business of blogging

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

If you’re a blog reader but you don’t run your own, feel free to skip this post or send it to your favourite bloggers!

One of the things that has been nagging at me ever since I wrote my How to start a beauty blog & How to monetize your blog posts is that no one quite knows what to be charging for their services — and brands are taking advantage of that fact to both undercut our prices & convince bloggers who run smaller blogs to work for little or no pay.

JCS-WestElm-StudioMakeover-9

workplace inspo via west elm

You can’t buy groceries with free product, so what I want to do is create a spreadsheet to compare stats to fees in a manner that we can all access. Once I have enough information, I’d also like to share a general summary with you guys to give everyone an idea what to be charging based on their stats without each person having to sort through all of the raw data.

The results will be completely anonymous and only available to other bloggers, but will be free to any blogger who wants to access them.

» Click here or scroll down to fill out the survey «

So here’s where you guys come in. If you run a blog, please take a minute to fill out this Google Form! You don’t need to look up your exact stats or answer any questions that don’t apply to you/that you don’t want to (estimates are totally fine!) This information is only going to be a general picture that other bloggers can reference, so don’t sweat it.

I’m hoping to have this form open for about a month, so please get your entires in as soon as you can, share with friends, and return at the end of April for the results!

» This survey can be found at http://bit.ly/tnblogging if you want to share it with other bloggers! «

Lise Watier HydraForce launch & hydration detector app!

Monday, March 21, 2016

Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective moisturizer gel-creme review

Last weekend, I had the privilege of being able to attend a Lise Watier skincare launch at West Edmonton Mall. It was a really nifty event; just a small booth and a few super helpful ladies manning the table & makeover station, but the way the line is being marketed is really unique.

The Lise Watier HydraForce line features Gaspé algae and offers a gel moisturizer, a cream moisturizer, a glossy, lemony lip balm that feels great and tastes a little sweet (don’t judge me), and an app.

Now, I know what you’re going to say: cosmetic apps are overdone! But this one involves testing tool that lets you quantifiably measure how well your moisturizer is working (or not working), and its accuracy is actually repeatable.

Lise Watier HydraForce hydration detector review

Verifying the science

My partner and I tested out the HydraForce detector for before and after readings at the counter, and the results were pretty cool to see. My hands (the HydraForce range contains silicones) went from 36% hydrated to 57% after applying the Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective Creme-Gel ($45 CAD), and Boyfriend’s face went from 48% to a whopping 76%, which surprised even the Lise Watier rep!

Lise Watier HydraForce test app

Much boyfriend. Very suspicious. Such hydration!

Lise Watier HydraForce lip balm review

Even with three before & after tests that matched my expectations, I wasn’t sure about the science, so I headed back home to broaden my sample size. My combination-skinned mom’s t-zone had a 48% moisture level (which is more or less perfect hydration, according to the app), and my dad’s scaly legs eked out a 28%.

The really scary result, though, was my own: I re-tested the skin on my freshly washed, un-moisturized hands, and I got a 13.4% reading. I tested again on my other hand to replicate the results and got 14%. So, obviously, I panicked and cried applied some moisturizer to my hands and tested again; this time, with much higher results — 28%, which is still in the dry region of the chart, but not painfully dry.

Lise Watier HydraForce app

My Lise Watier Hydration Detector app results / what your results mean!

Lise Watier HydraForce launch the bay west edmonton mall

Lise Watier HydraForce bubble

HOW CUTE IS THIS BUBBLE, THOUGH

The products

As I mentioned, I can’t test these products in the long-term because they contain silicones. However, I can tell you that I really liked what I saw. The moisturizers smell and feel amazing, and the Hydra-Protective Creme-Gel is an awesome starter product from the HydraForce range. It’s super lightweight and designed only to provide your skin with hydration, so it can be used as a standalone moisturizer or used as a hydration gel-serum under the treatment product of your choice.

If you want to test your skin’s hydration levels (and grab a free deluxe sample of the Hydra-Protective Creme-Gel), the HydraForce tour has three stops left: Toronto, on April 2nd; Montreal, on April 8th; and Dartmouth, on April 16th. I highly recommend going to one of them if you can!

Availability: Get the HydraForce line here at LiseWaiter.com (US & Canada shipping).

Additional photos & more »

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