Friday Faves: My Natural Hair Care Routine

Hair Care Faves feature via @poorandpretty

My Natural Hair via @poorandpretty

Have you noticed me wearing my hair natural a lot more lately? Not straightened, not pulled back, just down and wavy. I’ve gotten so many compliments from friends that I thought I’d let you in on my secret. Oh, and FYI – this is not a sponsored post.

These are the three products that have made my awesome hair possible:

Hair Care Faves via @poorandpretty

1. SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Shampoo, $10 at Target.

2. SheaMoisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl & Shine Conditioner, $12 at Target.

3. Poor & Pretty Apothecary Rose + Sea Salt Hair Spray, $14.

Seriously, that’s it. No balms or texturizing gels. Just these three natural and awesome hair goodies.

Renaissance Twist Hair Style via @poorandpretty

I have unruly thick, wavy hair that refuses to behave, especially in humidity (thanks East Coast!). So I have had a lifelong battle trying to find the perfect mix of hair products that will tame my mad mop. I’ve tried all kinds of natural shampoos & conditioners — bar shampoos, no-poo’s, castille soap based shampoos, you name it. I’ve even tried making my own. My hair would be too dry, too oily, or I’d have to put it up or straighten it for it to look good. Then I found SheaMoisture.

SheaMoisture’s Curl & Shine shampoo and conditioner are amazing. It has seriously changed my life. My hair is healthier than it’s ever been and I can actually wear it down! Packed with Coconut Oil, Shea Butter, Jojoba Oil, Neem Seed Oil, Hibiscus Extract and more, SheaMoisture’s Curl & Shine shampoo and conditioner hydrate, shine, and boost my natural waves, without stripping my scalp’s natural oils with harsh surfactants. They don’t leave my hair oily either. I wash + condition every other day, then spritz on my Rose + Sea Salt Hair Spray to give it a little extra mermaid wave texture, and I’m good to go. If it starts to feel oily on my non-wash days, I’ll use my homemade dry shampoo.

Wild Crazy Free Hair via @poorandpretty

I’ve totally embraced my wild, wavy, natural hair now. If your hair is anything like mine, hopefully I’ve helped solve your hair problems too! xo

P.S. I’ll say it again: This is not a sponsored post. I am not being paid by SheaMoisture or anyone else to write about their products. This post does, however, contain affiliate links which may generate a revenue for Poor & Pretty when a purchase is made. But you know I only recommend stuff that I love! You can read more about my affiliate link policies here.

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DIY All-Natural Body Sprays & Perfumes

Make Your Own Body Spray feature @poorandpretty

DIY Body Spray via @poorandpretty

I have been on a roll with tutorials lately! It must be the return of spring. :) As part of my ongoing partnership with Bramble Berry, I thought I’d share with you a few ways to make all-natural body sprays and perfumes. I’ve made perfume in the past, so I wanted to try a lighter body spray this time, especially now that I’ve got a few homemade infused oils! Before we dive in, let’s talk about the three main all-natural body spray bases:

Oil Base:

Water Base:

Alcohol Base:

DIY Perfume via @poorandpretty

Remember the DIY Perfume I made last year? This is an example of an alcohol-based perfume or body spray. Although it contained a man-made fragrance oil, the vodka base itself is natural and can be used with essential oils instead. In today’s post, I’ll cover the Oil and Water based body sprays. If you want a stronger perfume, check out my alcohol-based perfume tutorial here.

DIY Vanilla Sandalwood Moisturizing Body Spray via @poorandpretty

I love any excuse to slather myself in vanilla-scented goodness, so my first body spray was an oil-based one, using my vanilla-infused jojoba oil. I combined it with a few drops of sandalwood essential oil for a sensual, woodsy appeal.

Vanilla Woods Oil-Based Body Spray

This is a great after-shower spray, and can be used in place of lotion for dry skin because jojoba oil absorbs very quickly, without a greasy feeling.

DIY Citrus Body Spray via @poorandpretty

I’m also a big fan of citrusy fragrances, and I’m in love with the Litsea Cubeba Essential Oil I picked up from Bramble Berry. It’s like lemon with a little bit of pine. In this water-based body spray, I mixed it with Orange Essential Oil and Rosewater, which produced a lovely citrus-meets-bubblegum fragrance. It reminded me of lemon sherbet, tea cookies, summer carnivals, and relaxing on the porch with a good book.

Almost Summer Water-Based Body Spray

 This is a very light fragrance that won’t stick around forever, but offers a lovely light pick-me-up scent.

 DIY Body Spray - using a funnel @poorandpretty

Tips & Tricks for Making Body Spray:

  • If you can, use amber or cobalt (blue) bottles rather than clear. They filter light, preserving your fragrance for longer.
  • Use a funnel when pouring your water, oil, or alcohol into your bottle to avoid spills!
  • Optionally, you can add aloe vera, glycerin, and/or Vitamin E to your sprays for extra moisturizing benefits.

Make Your Own Body Spray via @poorandpretty

Have you ever made your own perfume or body spray? I’d love to hear what worked for you, and what fragrances you’ve mixed up!

Disclosure: I was provided some of the supplies shown in this post by Bramble Berry, because I totally love them and they love me too! This post also contains affiliate links which may generate a revenue for Poor & Pretty when a purchase is made. You can read more about my affiliate link policies here.

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DIY Herbal Infused Oils for Beauty & Cooking

Infused Vanilla and Lavender Oils feature via @poorandpretty

Infused Coffee Vanilla and Lavender Oils via @poorandpretty

When I began creating products for my 100% natural Apothecary line, I realized quickly that my fragrance options were pretty limited. Because I only use essential oils, I can’t easily achieve apple pie, cucumber melon, or vanilla frosting scents. I was not willing to give up on vanilla, but Vanilla Absolute (the closest thing you get to vanilla essential oil) is CRAZY expensive — sometimes around $100/oz! I knew there had to be a less expensive alternative. That’s when I discovered I could make my own oil infusions. You can do this with all kinds of herbs and flowers, and it’s cheaper than buying essential oils. 

DIY Infused Lavender Oil supplies via @poorandpretty

Depending on the types of oil and herb, flower, or bean you use, your infused oils can be used in beauty products or cooking. Next week, I’m going to share how I used mine to make body sprays! But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Let’s get infusing!

Basic Infused Oil Recipe

  • ¼ – ½ cup herb, flower, or bean
  • 1 cup of oil

These are approximations. For some oils, you’ll want to use more of the herb you’re working with, and some you’ll use less. See my “herbs to infuse” section below for details.

Infusing Lavender Almond Oil via @poorandpretty

Double-Boiler Infusion Method  — the fastest method!

  1. Fill the bottom pan of a double boiler with water. If you don’t have a double boiler, fill a medium saucepan with 1 ½ cups of water.
  2. Add your oil and herbs, flowers, or beans to the top pan of your double-boiler. If using a saucepan, put the oil and herbs into a heat-safe bowl or Pyrex measuring cup and place gently into the saucepan.
  3. Warm on low heat for 2-4 hours, checking every so often to make sure your water hasn’t evaporated. If it starts getting low, add more in.
  4. Strain the oil/herb mixture through cheesecloth, a fine mesh strainer, or a coffee filter into a jar and close the lid tightly.

Infused Vanilla and Lavender Oils via @poorandpretty

Tips & Tricks for Infusing Oils

  • Use oils that have a long shelf life — Jojoba, Olive, Sweet Almond, and Avocado oils are best. You can buy them here.
  • For the most part, you’ll want to use dried herbs and flowers to prevent bacterial growth and mold.
  • Straining through a coffee filter took a long time. If you’ve got cheesecloth or a fine mesh filter, use that instead!

DIY Infused Oils via @poorandpretty

Herbs to Infuse + Where to Buy Them

  • Calendula (Marigold) – One of the best, most versatile infusions. Calendula soothes dry & damaged skin and irritations. Use it alone or in a salve or lotion to heal sunburn and rashes. It makes a great baby oil, too. Use up to 1:1 calendula to oil ratio. You can buy calendula here.
  • Chamomile – If you want something relaxing, but you’re not a fan of lavender, chamomile is a close second. It’s not as strongly scented as lavender. Use ½ cup chamomile per cup of oil. You can buy chamomile here.
  • Coffee Grounds – This oil will tighten skin, fight free radicals, stimulate blood flow, and reduce cellulite. Ever notice that eye creams tend to have coffee in them? That’s because coffee reduces puffiness and gets rid of under-eye circles. Use ¼ – ½ cup of coffee grounds to 1 cup of oil. You can buy coffee grounds at your local supermarket.
  • Lavender  – You know the drill. Lavender is great at reducing stress and inducing relaxation and sleep. (Learn more about why I love lavender here.) Use ¼ cup of lavender buds per cup of oil. You can buy lavender buds here.
  • Orange Peel – A lovely brightening, cheering scent, I love using powdered orange peel in my Orange Sugar Scrubs. Dried orange peel can also be used to make an infused oil. You can make dried orange peel yourself by peeling oranges and letting the peels cook in the oven on very low heat for a few hours or you can skip that (it’s kind of a pain) and buy dried orange peel here.
  • Peppermint – Awakens the senses and soothes sore muscles. A peppermint-infused oil would be great on its own as a sore muscle massage oil. Use fresh peppermint, which you can buy in your local supermarket. I love combining rosemary + peppermint for cold season remedies, like in this DIY Mint + Rosemary Vapor Rub or my Mint + Rosemary Bathing Salts.
  • Rosemary – This can make a great culinary or beauty oil. Use it as a rub for muscle pain or as a treatment for dry, itchy, flaky scalp. It’s also great in recipes for roasting potatoes, pasta sauce, etc. I used about 2 tbs of dried rosemary in 1 ½ cups of olive oil. Because I will primarily use this for cooking, I left the rosemary in the oil. You can buy rosemary in the spice aisle of your local supermarket.
  • Vanilla Beans – This smells incredible! I use vanilla-infused jojoba oil in my Vanilla Sugar Scrubs. Slice up 3-4 vanilla beans per cup of oil. I like the tiny seeds mixing in with my sugar scrubs, so I don’t strain this oil. You can buy vanilla beans in most supermarkets or natural food stores.

These are just a few of the oil infusions you can make! I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences. On Monday, I’ll share how to use these infusions to make body sprays.

Disclosure: I was provided some of the supplies shown in this post by Bramble Berry, because I totally love them and they love me too! This post also contains affiliate links which may generate a revenue for Poor & Pretty when a purchase is made. You can read more about my affiliate link policies here.

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Introducing Poor & Pretty Apothecary: 100% Natural Bath & Body

Poor & Pretty Apothecary Lineup_550

Poor & Pretty Apothecary Lineup_600

Say hello to my new lineup! Poor & Pretty Apothecary is a line of vegan, 100% natural sugar and salt scrubs, bathing salts, and whipped body butters. At this point, I have added almost everything to my Etsy shop. Here’s what you’ll find:

Lemon Bathing Salts and Sugar Scrub_600

Lemon Sugar Scrub (available in 4 oz and 8 oz jars) and Lemon Bathing Salts (12 oz). Aside from Vanilla (which actually has no pure essential oil), lemon is my favorite essential oil. It combines so well with the fair trade certified & organic cane sugar, coconut oil, and jojoba oil in my sugar scrubs and Dead Sea and Epsom Salts in my bathing salts. Lemon is a mood-booster, detoxifier, and energizer. Perfect for blasting away the impending winter gloom.

Lavender Sugar Scrubs_600

Of course, I already gave you a sneak peek at my exfoliating Lavender Sugar Scrubs — also in 8 oz and 4 oz.

Lavender Bathing Salts_600

I couldn’t resist making Lavender Bathing Salts, too. Organic lavender essential oil teams up with lavender and chamomile floral powders to relax your body and mind while Dead Sea and Epsom Salts soothe sore, achy muscles and re-mineralizing your skin.

Rose Bathing Salts and Salt Scrub_600

Rose essential oil and pink Himalayan Salts were a natural pair in my Rose Salt Scrub and Rose Himalayan Bathing Salts.

Rose Bathing Salts top_600

Himalayan Salt is the most sought-after bathing salt because it restores the natural chemical balance of the skin, helps heal psoriasis and eczema, eases muscular aches and pains, and reduces stiffness.

Rose Salt Scrub 8oz top_600

It’s also ideal for exfoliating scrubs because it improves circulation, and re-mineralizes and detoxifies skin. Add to that the cell regeneration, mood-elevating, and aphrodisiac qualities of rose essential oil, and you’ve got a beautiful thing. So skip the beauty nap and take a beauty bath!

Mint and Rosemary Bathing Salts top2_600

Now, I’ve never been a big fan of mint. I’ll occasionally have it in tea and it’ll sneak its way into chocolate or something, but I usually try to avoid it. There are a lot of mint lovers out there (including Stan), so I made Mint + Rosemary Bathing Salts, and I’m really glad I did! Mint and rosemary essential oils are fantastic at clearing up sinuses and stimulating the mind, and both have antiseptic and astringent properties. Ever wonder why mint is always in foot creams? That’s because it cools and deodorizes. So if you’re looking to take a soothing bath after a rough workout, this will be your new best friend.

Whipped Body Butter 8oz_600

I saved the best for last: my 100% organic Whipped Body Butter. When I whipped this together the very first time a few months ago, I thought I had somehow gained magical powers. This stuff is phenomenal. Made with certified organic cocoa and shea butters, and coconut and jojoba oils, this soft and creamy body butter is ultra-moisturizing.

Whipped Body Butter 8oz top_600

You only need a little bit, so this baby will last you a while, although it smells like chocolate so it is pretty addicting. (I actually had to pause typing so I could use some.) And it absorbs pretty quickly and doesn’t make your skin greasy. This is great for anyone because it’s so amazing, but especially for those with sensitive or dry skin. It comes in a 4 oz or 8 oz jar, but I sold out of my 4 oz jars at the Hartford HodgePodge, so I only have 8 oz listed on Etsy. Hopefully I’ll have time to whip some more up this weekend!

… And hopefully you’ll grab some of my new products and have yourself a spa night (or month). ;)

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