Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Zum Tub Patchouli Ylang Ylang Bath Salts Review

I think I have found the best of Zum. The bath salts. I like some of their soaps, the frankincense and myrrh body oil is pretty good, but there bath salts? Amazing! I love them more than most the bath stuff I have ever gotten from Lush. 

Zum claims:

  • Salt your rim and take a dip in this moisturizing drink. Zum Tub's shea butter infusion transforms a mix of all-natural sea salt crystals and epsom salts into a submersible bathrodisiac. Your skin goes glug glug and your mind goes unplugged.
    • 100% pure essential oils
    • All-natural ingredients
    • The earthy patchouli helps treat dry skin, while the light, floral ylang ylang helps to speed up the healing process of any wounds. Ylang Ylang also relaxes the body, driving away chronic stress and anxiety. 
They have quite a bit of choices when it comes to the scent you want. But I thought I would start with this, since I'm on a patchouli kick lately. I'm especially fond of patchouli and citrus scents and I bought this thinking ylang ylang was a citrus. It's a floral, which I realized a little later. I'm not sure exactly what ylang ylang smells like since I've never smelled it on it's own. The patchouli definitely takes over and overpowers any other scent that might be in there. It's that signature patchouli, earthy, dirty, exotic scent...with just a bit of juiciness to it. I really love it. But I don't think everyone would appreciate this one, especially if you aren't a fan of patchouli. And it sticks to you!

One thing I don't like about it- no directions. How much do I use? Who knows. I just sprinkle until I'm satisfied with the scent but who knows if I'm supposed to be using more or less. I think I use about a third of a cup. I think. I can be heavy handed.

The packaging is not as as cute as the other packaging. But I think maybe that's because this one has dried flowers in it. There aren't much...and I don't really think they add too much to the bathing experience, but whatever floats their boat. 

It's hard to describe the salts. So I took a picture. 

I'm sure you get all the benefits of an Epsom Salt bath along with nice and moisturized skin.

As always, ingredients are completely natural. The salts are made in the USA. And they are cruelty-free.


Sea salt, epsom salt, pure essential oils, meadowfoam seed oil, rosemary oleo, and herbs.

In conclusion, this is quite a rich, exotic smelling bath salt experience that makes me feel like I'm bathing in luxury. I would buy them again, and I would highly recommend them if you are a fan of patchouli. I have about one more use in my jar and then I'm trying the frankincense and myrrh one next. 


Monday, November 20, 2017

Essential Oil Companies

This is not so much a post for my blog but more of a little research I did and want to come back to it so I figured I would make it a post and reference it when I need to. 

I've been into essential oils for a little while now. I'm not sure where I heard of them, but I started out with a bottle of Now Lavender and some random brand off Amazon. I had lime and grapefruit and I think one more. I first become interested in the oils after doing reviews on different Lush soaps and realizing a lot of them had different essential oils in them. I'm pretty sure it was Lush Angel's Delight.  Could you really get such a juicy citrus scent from just Essential oils? After ordering them, I decided you probably could. 

I'm not sure what I did with those early bottles. I think I tried them in an oil burner, I would leave little cotton balls with oils in drawers in stuff. I went through those bottles but didn't repurchase for a little while. Not until we moved back to the states and I started seeing oils in TJ Maxx. I stayed and tried out some fragrance oils (still have them!), but I realized essential oils are far superior. They have actual health benefits. And you actually know what's in them which you don't with fragrance oils. 

So I made a couple different things with them. Lotion bars, oils, and then a couple months ago finally got a diffuser, mostly to make my place smell good. But I love using essential oils for other stuff like eucalyptus for sore muscles, lavender to sleep, peppermint for heartaches, and tea tree for cuts. They have really worked for me for purposes like that and I like that they are natural.

But just because they are natural does not mean they are safe for everyone. If you have any medical conditions or are on any medications you should use extreme  caution. Do your research, check with an aromatherapist or a doctor. Same with pregnant women. And children. So many people are throwing all these oils on their children with no regards to safety. Not all oils are kid safe. Or pet friendly. If you have animals, please use caution when diffusing or using essential oils. Some can be extremely harmful to you pets. 

So now that that's out the way, one of the hardest things to decide is which oil companies to buy from. The most talked about oils seem to be Young Living and Do Terra. Which I would never purchase. I don't like MLM companies. Check out this video from John Oliver, it's very informative on MLM's in general. 

So since oils can be adulterated with things that aren't essential oils, there are certain things to look for in companies you are looking to purchase from. A GC/MS report, the origin of the oil, and the scientific name. A little bit of safety info is also quite nice too.

So I found a couple of companies that I think are worth checking out. I haven't ordered from most of these companies but probably will in the future just to give them a try.

1. Plant Therapy- I actually already ordered from them, I bought the 1 oz bottle of Lavender and a 1 oz of blood orange. They have 1 oz bottles for very reasonable prices for the more common oils. They ship fast, have free shipping, and have a very large selection of oils. The best thing about them is their kid safe line. So if you have children and want to be sure you are using oils that are safe around them, the Kid Safe line would be worth checking out. I like how they put safety first. 

2. Edens Garden- I placed a decent sized order for my parents. They have great customer service and reasonable prices, especially if you get the gift sets where you can choose your own. I haven't placed an order for myself but I definitely plan to sometimes in the future. 

3. Florihana- A french brand of oils. I heard a lot of raves about this brand and I do plan to try them out, it's just the shipping is on the pricier side if you are in the US. There is a site you can order from where the shipping is more reasonable, so I do plan to order from them some day!

4. Aura Cacia- You can find these the easiest of all the brands. Aura Cacia is in most heath food stores. I've heard from many that the quality is not as good as what you can find from other brands, but I haven't had a problem with them. They are widely available and prices aren't too bad. Although you can find better prices from the first two brands, Aura Cacia will do in a pinch!

4. Veriditas Botanicals- I went through a bottle of Lavender from them, and still have some Tea Tree from the brand. They have great quality oils, they are organic (if that's what you like!), and also great info on their site about the oils. The only thing is they can be hard to get a hold of.

5. Rocky Mountain Oils- I had heard a lot of people love their oils. Some of them seem priced a bit high and a lot of their blends seem to be diluted and still priced quite high. I'm not too sure about this one but since it is one that I've seen recommended I thought I would include it in the list.

6. Mountain Rose Herbs- I'm on the fence with them. This is a brand that seems to be popular with bloggers. And from what I see a lot of them have affiliate links (I saw the same for Rocky Mountain Oils too!). Other people that I've seen review them that paid for them didn't seem too thrilled with the oils. I might place an order somewhere down the line to see for myself. 

7. Now- The quality of Now stuff sucks. At least that's what I've been thinking since I've tried their Shea Butter. A lot of their stuff is extracted in the cheapest way possible. I think you get what you pay for with NOW brand. But I would still buy from the brand because while I wouldn't want to use my pricier  oils in cleaners, etc I would definitely buy these to use for cleaning etc. 

8. Plantlife- I have an allspice oil from them. I'm mostly interested in trying their blends. I think some of their single oils can be quite pricey, but I do like the company and think they make great soaps (although the scent could be stronger)! They have free shipping at $25 which is great too!

I think that's all for now and the best of most of the information I cam across....

Do you have brand you prefer or recommend, let me know in the comments!


Sunday, November 19, 2017

Baby Bok Choy Soup

It's soup season! Which is my absolute  favorite thing about cold weather. Sort of. Anyway, this soup introduced a complete new vegetable into my kitchen. I've never done anything with Bok Choy before. I didn't even know it was a kind of cabbage until after I started looking it up. Which I definitely should eat more of. 

Anyway, Bok Choy soup is completely new to me. I wasn't sure how I would like it, it seemed a little simple in the ingredients department. And the "broth" looked a bit simple too. I wasn't sure how flavorful it would be because I'm used to broths taking quite a bit of time.

But it works! I actually really enjoyed this soup. It is the perfect side soup to accompany asian foods, like my favorite orange chicken and rice.  

It's also vegan.

I got the recipe from Family Feedbag, click here to check the complete recipe out for yourself.

 I had the prettiest, freshest baby (HUGE still),Bok Choy!

Started off cooking up the onions and garlic for the full 15 minutes per the recipe.

Sometimes after starting off the broth I added in my Bok Choy...

 The finished soup...yum!

In conclusion, this is getting pinned, because I will definitely be making this again!

Friday, November 17, 2017

Veriditas Botanicals Organic French Lavender Essential Oil

I can't live without Lavender Oil. And I'm not just being dramatic. It just makes my life so much easier now that I've discovered how to use it. 

Veriditas by Pranarom’s Lavender essential oil is from farms in the French Alps where the scented purple flowers are cultivated in neat, long rows against the backdrop of the mountains. While Lavender grows all over the world, the French Alps are known for producing the world’s best Lavender essential oil. The finest Lavender available is grown at the highest altitudes and is produced in limited quantities; we sell this oil as Lavender Reserve.

They have a ton of great info on their site, click here to get to it.

I don't necessarily go for Organic oils. Although I've read some convincing arguments on why one should stick with Organic oils. I pretty much just bought it because it was 20% off. And the other brand was not on sale, although you do get a larger amount for a way cheaper price. I just figured I would buy this one then and purchase the other brand sometime later. 

So I paid around $8 for 5ml. Which is about a teaspoon. Seemingly expensive but for most things you really don't need to use a lot. 

To be honest, I'm not really sure what I used most of this bottle for. It wasn't until it was mostly gone that one night I rubbed a drop into some sweet almond oil (about a 1/2 teaspoon) and rubbed it on my neck, temples, and around my nose. And I fell asleep! Which for me is a miracle. It takes me hours and hours to fall asleep. I usually can't fall asleep until I'm completely worn out from lack of sleep which is about once a week. 

But anyway, that drop of oil knocks me out in about 30 minutes. I sleep deeper and a little longer without waking up. Then I can go throughout the day without feeling extra tired. Which was odd the first week. I was constantly surprised I wasn't tired all day. But then oddly enough I will be exhausted all day and get a burst of energy at night. I'm a night owl. 

It smells exactly like the Tisserand French Lavender Oil from what I remember. For the best scent it should be diluted or else it will smell kind of ammonia like. It's hard to describe, but it's not a bad scent. Just....strange. Diluting it helps, but I usually have to use a whole, fresh drop if I'm trying to get to sleep. Premixing doesn't not work for me for sleep. 

Some people diffuse Lavender oil. Since this was on the pricier side and Lavender oil doesn't last in my diffuser, nor does it spread far, I feel like I'm wasting it in a diffuser. So I don't use it that way. 

There are so many things you can do with Lavender oil, you can make body lotions, scrubs, massage oils, room sprays.....etc and on and on.

It's good at deodorizing, amazing to put on cuts and burns, great for skincare. It's also great for aches and pains.Wonderful for stress relief.  It's one of the most popular oils for very good reason. And I found this to be of high quality. I really like it. 

My bottle is pretty much empty and if it was on sale I would have picked up another. But I kind of wanted to try out some of the popular brands you can order online. I ended up ordering a bottle of Plant Therapy's Lavender and after a couple of months using it, I will probably do a review on that too! 

Gnarls Barley -Crazy

Ya'll remember this song? When it came out it was all over the radio. I didn't really start to like it until they stopped playing it. And for some odd reason I could never figure out who Gnarls Barkley was. Until I found out it was a group. Then I forgot again. And now that I googled it again I remember. 

But I like this song...so I thought I would share. Although you probably already heard it a million times. 

Here's to a million and one.

I also kinda like this slow version too.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Samples Review: Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream, Chloe, Bella by Vince Camuto Perfumes

I love perfume samples. The other day I was in Sephora, finally using a gift card, and I picked up a great one and put it on. Except I paid no attention to what it was. And I would go back and take a look, but probably won't get around to it. But I really should. But..I won't. 

Anyway, I did get a sampler from another MACYS order I placed. I picked up another 217 brush. I complained to customer service and they let me get it for the sale price I was supposed to get it for. And sent a little sampler. YAY!

1. Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream
This smells very basic, generic, and forgettable. It just didn't smell like anything special or unique or anything I would need to have. I had the original Daisy and I really liked that. I almost thought I liked it the third or fourth time I used it, but then it went back to smelling generic again. Needless to say, not a big fan!

2. Chloe
I had a full bottle of this too. It's a nice rose perfume. It's nice and it doesn't smell grandmother-y. Which is good.  But smelling like a Rose is not really my thing. I just don't feel like I look like I should smell like Roses. Roses do the best job of smelling like roses, I think. But if you are a fan of Rose perfumes, it might be worth checking this one out. I think it's one of the most popular rose perfumes. 

3. Vince Camuto Bella
I saved the best for last. This was my favorite of the three. It smells like a nighttime fragrance. More sophisticated. It seemed to last most of the day too. It almost smells a teeny bit masculine. But not too masculine. I would buy a full bottle based off the sample. Worth giving a sniff! Since I'm not the best at describing scents it's supposed to be nectarine blossoms, Italian bergamot, jasmine water, and white amber. Mmmmm.

Found any new great perfume scents for Winter worth checking out? Let me know in the comments!