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Shaving

Thursday, December 17, 2015 9:27:17 AM Asia/Singapore

SHAVING

By SHEA, located at Orchard Central, #B2-47/48, www.shea.com.sg )

Shaving

Most of us guys shave our face at least 3 times a week. What if I told you that you could get a lot more BENEFIT out of this routine, with almost NO additional effort?

Guys are lucky, sort of. When we shave, we exfoliate. For those who only have to shave their moustache (not everyone has a fully beard) do also “shave” and clean the cheeks and sides as if you did have a beard. There we go. Easy no? This removal of old dead cells gives your face a glow, and cleans at the same time. 

It is important to soften your facial hair before shaving. Thus, it is most beneficial to shower before shaving. And it is very beneficial to use a facial scrub to clean your whole face AND NECK. Don’t forget the neck.  Why do we need to use a scrub if we are going to shave? There are parts of the face that will not be shaved, like your forehead, but this needs to be exfoliated too. Using a scrub also softens the facial hair, making shaving easier.

Always use a lubricant like a good soap, and a badger hair brush to foam up to ensure the lubricant gets deep down. This creates a protective film to protect the skin and to allow for a smooth glide. It is best to shave WITH the grain. Shaving against the grain does give a closer shave, but, you will experience more razor burn. What is razor burn? It’s those little bumps and pimples that pop up after shaving when you forget to apply some form of soothing balm or oil.  

Now that your face is nice and clean after shaving, don’t let this opportunity go to waste. After shaving, the skin is much more receptive to anything you put on it. My system (was) is to apply a serum and a thin film of moisturizer. I NEVER use any alcohol based aftershave. It severely dehydrates your skin.

About a year ago, I started using Saadia Organics 100% Pure Argan Oil after shaving. Holy sh**! This stuff was brilliant! I did not have to use a serum and moisturizer. I only needed this. It left my face feeling really nice with absolutely no oiliness. Hand-squeezed Argan Oil is nutrient rich, very fine, and remains liquid at body temperature. It is absorbed by the skin very fast and does not block your pores, allowing your skin to breathe naturally.

So, for me, I exfoliate my face with a scrub (I experimented with various brands but I like the Exfoliating Scrub and Polishing Peel from Nu Skin) at least once a day in the shower, and ALWAYS apply the Argan Oil after shaving or peeling.

Please do note that there is a big difference between Pure Argan Oil and the blended rubbish being sold out there. Don’t get cheated. You get what you pay for. There is NO substitute for the real thing.

There is a difference between hand-squeezed argan oil and machine pressed argan oil. Sadia Organics Argan Oil is HAND SQUEEZED by Madam Saadia and her team in Morocco. No heat is applied, and all the precious nutrients remain intact. Machine pressing applies heat (damages nutrients) and crushes the pulp so much that even stuff you don't want comes out of the pulp.

When you buy something, look for the value it brings to you, not the price (by the way, our hand squeezed Argan Oil costs the same as the big name brand, but you get a much higher quality and effective Argan Oil from ours, as we don't have to pay the long supply chain. We get ours direct).  Always look for the EFFECTIVE VALUE you get from what you buy.

SHEA (Orchard Central, #B2-47/48, www.shea.com.sg) offers pure hand squeezed Argan Oil from Saadia Organics, which we believe is probably the best Argan Oil in the world. We also offer the Nu Skin Exfoliating Scrub and Polishing Peel.

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Cellulite, And what to do about it.

Monday, November 9, 2015 3:36:48 PM Asia/Singapore

CELLULITE,
and what to do about it

This is a problem many people face, especially ladies. So what is this nasty bumpy stuff? It’s a combinations of swollen fat cells, water and waste fluids. So how is it formed? It’s a combination of diet, hormonal balance, diet change, aging and exercise.

It happens in 5 steps.

  • Fat metabolism is disturbed
  • Fat cells increase in size
  • Fat cells squeeze capillaries and disrupt micro circulation
  • Skins collagen & elastin support structure breaks down
  • Fluid retention increases

The image explains this quite clearly

Cellulite Formation

Simple enough, the formation of cellulite is known. But, getting rid of it is a whole other story. So, to decrease cellulite, choose products with ingredients that can concentrate cellular energy to help do the following

  • Break down fat
  • Reduce fat storage
  • Increase circulation to remove toxins
  • Increase the firmness of the skin
  • Even out affected areas

This is best done by eating correctly, exercise and massaging the affected areas with the right topical creams & related products

Our Seaweed Batch Anti-Cellulite products do just this. The soap helps massage the affected areas and the cream penetrates the skin and helps drain the retained fluids. For more detail on their active ingredients and how they work, click here. More Info

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Posted in Body and Skin Care By Jag

Why Skin Wrinkles

Friday, July 17, 2015 11:47:35 AM Asia/Singapore

WHY SKIN WRINKLES

Young and Old SkinHealthy young skin maintains and appropriate moisture levels through the sealing and protective properties of the moisture barrier. The moisture barrier is made up of keratinocytes (keratin filled skin cells) surrounded and sealed by ceramides, lipids and fatty acids. As we age, the skin produces fewer ceramides, lipids and fatty acids. This weakened moisture barrier results in water loss and dryness.

Loss of smoothness and suppleness is due to the break-down of collogen and elastin. Collagen is a structural protein found in the dermis provides a mesh like framework of support and strength for the skin. As we age, collagen production decreases and collagen fibres degrade at a faster rate than earlier years. The result is an overall decrease in the amount of collagen in the dermis. Areas with less support cave in and wrinkles form. Another skin structural protein found in the dermis is elastin. This coil like protein has the ability to snap back into place after stretching, giving skin its elastic quality.

Vitamin E provides protection against free radicals and premature aging caused by sun damage and pollutants. It also works with Vitamin C to help reconstruct collagen, help retain moisture and skin firmness.  Vitamin thus, helps scars fade faster, helps repair from UV damage, improves elasticity, reduce itchiness due to eczema and psoriasis.

One of the best sources of vitamin E is Saadia Organics Hand extracted Argan Oil. Where the full benefits of the nutrients can be experienced as it is not subjected to heat. Grab a Bottle and see the difference.

 

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Fragrances for the Home

Wednesday, May 20, 2015 12:18:51 PM Asia/Singapore

THE RIGHT FRAGRANCE TRANSFORMS YOUR HOME

CandlesWhether you are looking to mask other odours or you just want to make your space feel more welcoming,
a subtle yet high quality fragrances can make a massive difference to how you feel in your home or office.Our home fragrances help create the right atmosphere in any room. We have candles, reed diffusors, essential oils, infused cards and fragrance melts.

Candles
Nothing beath the dancing flames of a candle at night. Our candles are scented using pure essential oils blended by scent masters in England to create lovely fragrances that create a wonderful ambience in a room. They are made with a very high quality low melting point wax and a special wick to ensure the candles last a long time. Our candles can be made to release their wonderful fragrances in two ways, either by lighting the wick or by using our special candle warming lamp. We offer the second option for situations when an open flame is not a viable option.

Reed Diffusors
Reed diffusors are a simple and elegant way of fragrancing a space continuously throughout the day with a fairly strong scent. They are ideal for washrooms and small spaces. Our reed diffusors come from Grasse in France. Grasse is where all the scent experts sit, and create classic fragrances. Our reed diffusors use pure essntial oils in an organic oil base and last for months. The rate of fragrance diffusion can be adjusted by increasing or redusing the number of reeds used. A gentle air movement in the room they are placed helps fill the room with their magnificent aroma. Our Reed Diffusors keep on scenting long after the oils have finished. Ours have lasted for more than 6 month!

Essential Oils
Essential oils come from all over the world. Ours come from all over the world and beautifully bottled in different coloured coded bottles. Our essential oils are of a slightly higher grade than most. These are suitable for both ambience scenting as well as topical use when blended with a massage oil.  Essential oils for ambience fragrancing are most often used by adding a few drops into water in a tea light heated vessel. Essential oils have wonderful properties and often used as a single scent. However, they can be blended to suit personal preferences. 

Infused Card Diffusors
Created in England, our infused cards are ideal for very small confined areas like car interiors and cupboards. There is a trick to using them to make them last a very long time. Ours have been known to last for more than 3 months when used correctly. Such infused Card Diffusors use a masterfully blended essnetial oils to eliminate odours and made cupboards, drawers and car interiors smell great.

Fragrance Melts
This is one of the cleverest things we have from England. We callthem little Hotties. These are little wax pellets with a high amount of essential oils infused into them. They are sold in a box of 100g (any mix of the more than 20 fregarances we have) and the idea is here is to give you the power to be creative and to create your own personal blend of fragrance. Pop 3 to 5 pieces into the bown of a essental oil burner, light the tealight below and VOILA! Your own custom fragrance. They last for a long time.

So, if you want to switch fragrances after a while. Simply let it cool, and pop out the pellet and keep it. When you want to use it again, put it back into the burner and it metls again and fills your room with the wonderful scent you created.

Ideas
Use lemon, lemongrass, grapefruit or green tea or a combination of these to create freshness,  Rosemary and Thyme as a brain freshner to improve alertness, Lavender, Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang for calmness, Vanilla, Spicy Citrus, Cinnamon for a cozy atmosphere, Eucalyptus, Tea Tree, Peppermint for easy breathing etc. There are just somany combinations. Try SHEA’s Home Scenting, it will blow your mind! As all our products use pure essential oils, they are safe for the family and environment .

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Perilous Parabens

Monday, May 11, 2015 11:52:56 AM Asia/Singapore

PERILLOUS PARABENSBottles

In recent years, more and more consumers and retailers are turning to natural beauty products that are paraben free. Parabens, which are the most widely used preservatives in beauty and personal care products, have become a concern due to their possible link to cancer and other health issues.The most common parabens are methylparaben, ethylparaben, proplyparaben and butylparaben. Parabens are used in products to extend their shelf life and prevent the growth of fungi and bacteria in the products.

Parabens are absorbed through the skin and may adversely affect the function of the endocrine system (laymans terms…skin system). While the research on parabens remains inconclusive, parabens have been linked to breast cancer, early puberty and infertility because they mimic estrogen and therefore can interfere with the body’s normal hormones. Nonetheless, the FDA has officially stated that it “believes that at the present time there is no reason for consumers to be concerned about the use of cosmetics containing parabens.” Ahem! Thank you Mr. FDA. Oh yes, you are the same guys who say that Aspartime was ‘A-OK’.  Say bye bye to your credibility.

Parabens should not be applied to cracked or inflamed skin because they can increase irritation, especially in those suffering from various skin conditions.

While there may not be conclusive evidence that parabens can cause long-term health problems, it is best to avoid them whenever possible. Why take a risk if you don’t have to. Always check labels and ingredient lists before buying new products and look for brands that are specifically paraben free. You can also look for certain seals on labels that indicate that a product is paraben free.

Bottom line, read the lables. Shea carries product that are paraben free. 

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Posted in Soaps Interesting Reading By Jag

The Power of African Black Soap

Monday, May 11, 2015 11:50:20 AM Asia/Singapore

Black SoapPURE AFRICAN BLACK SOAP

First and foremost, African Black Soap is NOT BLACK. It is brown/black in colour. It is most used in Ghana and Nigeria and is soft with an organic shape. It has a delicate texture with a  natural earthy smell. It is not oily or scented. Black Soap has been used for hair care & skin care for centuries. Today people from all walks of life are benefiting from this amazing African soap. It is made of plantain skins, palm kernel oil, palm oil, cocoa pod, coconut oil, and natural sodium. It is a natural source of vitamin A and E and Iron.
 It is very mild and gentle and does not contain lye.

 

Uses of black soap:

  • Acne control
  • Reduce blemishes
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Shampoo

 

Is black soap worth all the hype? You bet. On our skin, it is absolutely magic. African Black Soap aka ABS  is worth all the hype.

While the recipe varies, ABS is handmade from the ashes of cocoa pods, shea tree bark and plaintain leaves and mixed with various soothing and healing oils such as shea butter, cocoa butter, palm oil and coconut oil, creating its deliciously distinct aroma and amazing properties.  And don’t let it’s appearance fool you — although dark brown and crumbly in texture, this African-born skin miracle will become a staple in your cleansing routine. And remember, African African Black Soap is NOT BLACK. It looks like fruit cake.

It’s benefits are awesome and severely underrated, so we’re shouting them from the rooftops.  Here’s why ABS is so amazing:

It’s suitable for all skin types.  Dry, oily or perfectly in between. If  you have oily skin, regular use will help remove additional oils from the skin thus preventing the formation of pimples. Absolutely brilliant for teens.

It’s a super cleanser.  Well of course, it’s soap (DUH!) . …I mean really really clean. Without dryness.  There’s more.  The charcoal in ABS can help absorb body odors and bacteria, while its formula is gentle enough for makeup removal.

It’s soothing & healing.  This double whammy is perhaps the most notable.  If you suffer with rashes or skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, the ashes in black soap helps reduce irritation and can even be used by people with sensitive skin.  While ABS cannot remove acne, since that is caused by the release of excessive oils within the skin rather than dirt buildup, it can reduce the appearance of acne scars.

It’s a fountain of youth. (Clap clap clap clap) Yes, ABS may help you turn back the hands of time.  This gentle exfoliant may help reduce the appearance of fine lines and skin discolorations that indicate the early signs of aging skin.

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Argan Oil - Really?

Monday, May 11, 2015 11:48:44 AM Asia/Singapore

ARGAN OIL - REALLY?

(by Joel of Saadia Organics)

Everywhere you turn in the beauty aisle you’re now seeing the words “Argan Oil”. Are all of these products created equal? Of course not.

A lot of people ask us what the difference is between Saadia Organics and the ones they see in their hair salon, for example. Well, for starters, our product is 100% pure, unadulterated Argan Oil. Anything you’ll see in a hair salon will most likely have at least a dozen other ingredients besides “Argania spinosa kernel oil” on the label.

Is that a bad thing? I don’t think so. We all need shampoo, for example, and it doesn’t hurt to use one with a bit of Argan Oil in it. (Just try to choose one that is sulfate free.) Like our Seaweed Bath Company products. 

Saadia Organics is like freshly squeezed Orange Juice. Pure

Actually, i don’t know much about how the various types of orange juice are manufactured. But we do know a fair bit about how how Argan Oil is manufactured. Let’s start with our method. The ‘freshly squeezed’ method, if you will.

First you want the Argan fruit harvested in a gentle way from a goat-free farm. Goats find nothing tastier than Argan fruit and are willing to scale (and break!) the trees in order to do so.

Then, you want the oil to be produced by hand. Cold pressing using only a stone quern is the way that Berber women have been doing it for centuries. We are happy that Saadia and her team get to do this in privacy (which Moroccan women appreciate) and away from the tourist’s eyes and cameras in the co-ops.

Other methods use machinery. Some even use chemical solvents to pull the oil out of the kernels. Many brands of “100% Pure Argan Oil” put their oil through a deodorizing process. That process requires heating the oil to over 400 degrees farenheit for 30-60 minutes. I don’t want to even think about how many nutrients would be lost from the salad I had for dinner last night if I were to heat it to that temperature for an hour!

Argan Oil is no different. You want this precious oil in it’s purest, most natural state. Some of its best properties are lost in order to get rid of its natural, light, green, nutty, slightly olive-ish scent.

So we leave our oil alone. And we see the results. Just recently, Joel's daughter reacted very badly to a cleaning product. (She was determined to help with the dishes and some of the cleaning product was left over in a sponge in the sink.) The rash that developed made her cry. Immediately she asked for some of Grandma Saadia’s Argan Oil to put on it. It soothed her pain immediately. The next morning, angry, dry, scaly, red, eczema-like patches were on her hands. So Joel started putting Argan Oil on several times a day. A few days later, it was like the incident hadn’t even taken place. And we really don’t think too many products could do the magic that Grandma Saadia’s does!

So, if you really want pure Argan Oil, look no further. Saadia Organics Argan Oil is the REAL DEAL

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Posted in Argan Oil Interesting Reading By Jag

Essential Oils - Mandarin

Saturday, February 14, 2015 12:51:38 PM Asia/Singapore

MANDARIN ESSENTIAL OIL


Mandarin_EOThis tangy and zesty essential oil has some great properties to help relieve stress and digestive problems, but is mostly used to increase circulation to the skin, reducing fluid retention and to help prevent stretch marks.

A small evergreen tree that grows up to six metres in height, with glossy leaves, fragranct flowers and bearing fleshy fruit. The essential oil is extracted by cold expression of the outer peel. Mandarin blends well with other Citrus essential oils, as well as Neroli and other spicy oils such as Black Pepper. Origin : Italy

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Posted in Aroma Therapy and Massage By Jag

7 Signs to look out for when buying Argan Oil

Thursday, February 12, 2015 12:46:06 PM Asia/Singapore

7 SIGNS TO LOOK OUT FOR WHEN BUING ARGAN OIL

Argan_OilWith Argan Oil gaining in popularity, there are a lot of products popping up on the internet and even in stores claiming to be "Pure Argan Oil". Unfortunately, there are a lot of brands that you want to avoid. Even getting your Argan Oil in Morocco doesn't guarantee it's authenticity. As it is so difficult and time-consuming to produce, a lot of Argan Oil is completely fake, diluted or over-processed.  So here are a few ways to decide if a particular brand is worth investing in or not.

1.  The Ingredients
The ingredients list should be very short.  It should just say 100% Argan Oil or 100% Argania Spinosa Kernel Oil.  If it has anything else listed you don't want it.

2. The bottle
We are wary of Argan Oil sold in clear or plastic bottles. Both can make the oil deteriorate, and most producers of quality Argan Oil wouldn’t put this liquid gold in anything other than a dark coloured glass bottle (amber or cobalt blue, for example).  Aluminum or stainless steel can work well, too.  Light breaks down the oil's best properties and keeping it inside something dark is the best way to store Argan Oil.

3. The price
Good handpressed Argan Oil is very difficult to make.  It takes hours of manual labour and that does not come free.  So there is no such thing as cheap Argan Oil.  $10 for 2 ounces/60 ml seems like a bargain, but if it's just vegetable oil in that bottle, It's no bargain at all.  You might as well just step into your kitchen and use whatever you've got in the cupboard.

This is not to say that the most expensive Argan Oil is the best either.  You might just be paying for elaborate packaging and extensive marketing.

Sometimes you can find authentic CULINARY Argan Oil at a more economical price. But know that even though this oil will taste amazing, it will not produce the best results on your skin, hair and nails.  Raw, cosmetic-grade oil is from unroasted Argan fruits, and it is much more difficult to extract oil from raw materials.

4. The scent
Strong-smelling Argan Oil that smells absolutely awful should obviously be avoided.  It most likely has gone rancid.  (To ensure freshness, keep the cap or dropper screwed on to your bottle well!)

Also, if the Argan Oil you have is very fragrant and so delicious smelling enough that you want to eat it, it very well could be Argan Oil intended for culinary use.  The Argan kernels for this type of oil have been toasted first.  And this means great things for your salad, but it won't give the results you want on your skin and hair.

Argan Oil that smells like absolutely nothing might be suspicious, too.  It could be entirely fake, or at least diluted beyond olfactory recognition.  Or, it could be machine-made and possibly even put through a "deodorization" process.  However, with this said, some of the batches we get (particularly in the spring and summer) have a very, very light aroma.  Fall and winter seem to bring oil that has a deeper natural scent.

Genuine, raw, cosmetic-grade Argan Oil can smell unique to the uninitiated nose.  Most say it smells 'nutty'.  My daughter thinks it smells like popcorn.  I used to think it smelled a bit like a rubber band.  Now I just think it smells like pure luxury.  (But remember, some batches have a lighter scent than others.)

If you do get a bottle that is a bit more aromatic, after a couple of days you become used to the scent and know what results the use of this oil brings, so you savour that raw, green, nutty aroma.  Even if you never learn to love that smell, the scent always disappears after a few minutes on your skin, as true Argan Oil absorbs so quickly and beautifully.

However, many brands do put their precious Argan Oil through damaging heating and deodorization processes.  If a brand consistently smells like ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, then it is possible that their oil is consistently deodorized.  This process strips the oil not only of any smell it might have had, but also of some of its healing, restorative properties.

Sometimes chemical solvents are used to pull the oil from the Argan kernels.  And frequently during the refining process the oil is heated to a very high temperature (up to 375-400 degrees F for 30-60 minutes). But as mentioned, light and heat break down the oil's best properties, so we firmly believe it's best to leave this precious oil alone in its most natural state.

Again, we stress that the scent of raw, hand-pressed Argan Oil varies from batch to batch.  Sometimes the scent is lighter, sometimes it is a quite a bit more aromatic.  In our experience, the smell of the oil most definitely varies with the seasons.

5. The texture
Argan Oil should be smooth and silky.  Disappearing into your skin.  It should not feel slimy, sticky or watery.  It should not sting.  Even on uncomfortable skin conditions, Argan Oil should bring a soothing effect, not a painful one.

6.  The sediment
Authentic Argan Oil often has a tiny bit of sediment at the bottom of the bottle and it appears a bit "cloudy".  The highly refined or fake oil will not have this sediment and will look very clear.  Saadia Organics Argan Oil does have a few traces of sediment in some of our bottles.  Don't be alarmed if you do spy a wee bit.  Just let it settle and enjoy knowing that you have the real thing.

Our oil is also cloudy and pale yellow in colour.  We do not heat the oil at all, and it is run through a simple strainer, rather than put through a rigourous filtration system.  In our opinion, the less the oil is messed with and manipulated, the better.  When you see clear, bright yellow Argan Oil you know that heat and machines have been involved in the manufacturing process.

7. The results
As they say, "the proof is in the pudding". Every single day we get people telling us how much they love our product.  Telling us they've tossed other things they were using for skin care, hair care and baby care.  Some even have stopped using prescription medications* as our pure, raw Argan Oil works better on their psoriasis or on their child's eczema.  (Without the cost, potentially questionable ingredients or side effects.)

 Credit : Saadia Organics

 

Note : This product may not be suitable for those with nut allergies

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Essential Oil - Lavender

Wednesday, February 11, 2015 12:59:17 PM Asia/Singapore

LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL

EO_LAVIt is with good reason why lavender oil is one of the most favorite essential oils, as it has wonderful qualities and also smells great. It is a calming, relaxing oil, which combats stress and crisis, while the antiseptic properties helps with cold, flu and other ailments. It is excellent for asthma and migraines. Apart from that it supports female health and on the skin it has a healing effect, while preventing scarring and balancing the skin.

Lavender is an evergreen woody shrub that grows up to one metre in height and has narrow leaves and small blue/purple flowers. Lavender essential oil is produced by steam distillation of the fresh flowering tops of the plant. Lavender blends well with most oils, including all citrus oils, florals such as Rose, Geranium and Jasmine, Clary Sage, Vetiver and Patchouli. Origin : France

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Posted in Aroma Therapy and Massage By Jag

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