DIY Essential Oil Moisturizer and Eye Cream

Ingredients on the counter

The first thing you may notice is that there are a lot more ingredients on the counter than in the recipe. Well… that’s because I also made body butter, but it SUCKED. So, we’re not going to be sharing that recipe just yet.

You may also notice there is an alcoholic root beer with the ingredients. It’s not part of the recipe, but I do recommend adding it to your shopping list. You’re going to be whipping moisturizer for a while!

Moisturizer recipe

This was honestly meant to just be moisturizer, but it turned out pretty thick and makes an awesome eye cream. Here is the recipe:

DIY Moisturizer and Eye Cream

1/2 c shea butter

2 T sweet almond oil

3 T arrowroot powder

1 T water

10 drops frankincense oil

10 drops lavender oil

Melt shea butter in a double boiler with almond oil, until liquid. Transfer to a freezer safe bowl and freeze for 15 minutes, until the outside edges are becoming solid but the center is still liquid. Then whip with a mixer until you have reached your desired consistency (this took me about 10 minutes). Add arrowroot powder 1 T at a time, it should make it a bit thicker and less greasy. I needed to add a little water at this point, as well. Then add the essential oil(s) of your choice. If you plan to use this during the day, be sure you are not adding any oils that are photosensitive, and always make sure your oils aren’t oils that will burn the skin (an example of one NOT to use would be cinnamon). Leave me a message if you have questions, and see my disclaimer for info about essential oil use!

Melting shea butter

I don’t have a double boiler, so I put my shea butter and almond oil in a Pyrex measuring cup in a pot of boiling water. This works great because it has a handle, pour spout, and measurements, but if you do this be super careful when taking it out. I wore huge oven mitts to avoid a steam burn.

Oils out of the freezer

This is what mine looked like when I took it out of the freezer- almost like a candle that has been burning for a while.

Whipping moisturizer in a bowl

I mixed for a while after this, until it looked almost like butter. I ended up with a really thick cream. If you want it thinner, I would try 2 T of arrowroot powder and a little less whipping time.

Moisturizer in the jar, with the lid off

This recipe filled up two 2 oz glass containers, which I just labeled with super basic info. You could make it way cuter, but I… have no excuse. I didn’t. But I do still like how it turned out.

Finished moisturizer

I have been using this for two weeks now and I really like it so far. I use it as night cream, and then just under my eyes during the day. I chose these two oils to add because frankincense may help with scarring and wrinkles, and lavender may help with acne, sensitive skin, and wrinkles. I used the shea butter because it won’t clog your pores (my other option was cocoa butter, which definitely will!). Sweet almond oil is in between, but I used it because I just bought some and it’s good for sensitive skin. Let me know if you try it!

Jillian

How to Make Dry Shampoo

ingredients for dry shampooMy hair is so greasy, it makes me want to scream. I am done with washing my hair every day, so dry shampoo is a must.

I decided to try making my own for two reasons: my current product is white, and a pain to rub into my dark hair; and ever since I downloaded the Think Dirty app (NOT what it sounds, it tells you how toxic your products are and makes you want to throw away everything you own) I have been freaking out about everything. 10 is the worst score something can get.

Think Dirty app- Bumble and Bumble dry shampoo
Bumble and Bumble has some dry shampoos that do pretty well in the app, but of course not the one I happen to have (which cost something like $30). You can make this dry shampoo for super cheap, and you can customize the amount of cocoa powder you add to help it blend into your hair. I started with 1/2 T. of cocoa powder and went up to 1 T. I might even add more. For light hair I would start with just a tiny bit, or maybe even skip it. I simply mixed together the dry ingredients and put a little in my hair to test the color. Then I added more cocoa until I was happy, then stirred in the oils.

dry shampoo recipe

Recipe for those who can’t view the image:

Dry Shampoo

1 T arrowroot powder (can substitute corn starch if you don’t have any. It also might be available in the spice section of the bulk bin department at your local store)

1 T baking soda

1/2 t – 1 T (or more) cocoa powder, adjust to hair color

2 drops rosemary essential oil

2 drops lavender essential oil

Mix dry ingredients together in a small bowl. When well blended and the color is to your liking, stir in the essential oils. I chose rosemary and lavender because they can help to promote hair growth and decrease dandruff. You can use any oils that work for you! Please see my disclaimer here for more info about the use of essential oils.

finished dry shampoo, inside salt shaker

When you’ve finished your dry shampoo, you can store it however you like. Some people just use a bowl and apply it with a makeup brush. Please let me know if you’ve tried this method! I didn’t have an extra brush, so I decided to try a salt shaker. If you do this, I highly recommend you put stickers over most of the holes OMG. I shook it over the top of my head and stuff was a little touch and go for a bit. Let’s just say, I didn’t quite realize how quickly it would pour out! The good news is, my new dry shampoo has bears now!

hair before and after dry shampoo

These are definitely not the most flattering pictures of me, but I wanted to show you my hair before and after I tried out the finished product. Pretty good, right?!

Another interesting thing is I tried this last night, then used just a tiny bit this morning for volume. My head doesn’t itch today, and usually it does with my normal dry shampoo. Victory!

Let me know if you try the recipe!

Jillian 

Theory of Beauty 

 “I have this theory, that if we’re told we’re bad; then that’s the only idea we’ll ever have. Maybe if we are surrounded in beauty, one day we will become what we see.” Jewel “I’m Sensitive”

Throughout high school, college, and a few years after, I was obsessed with Jewel. I still kind of am, but I often forget she exists. Then I remember, and I go on Jewel listening binges. 

I love the lyrics to most of her songs, but “I’m Sensitive” has always stood out to me. Maybe because I am much more sensitive and easily wounded than I try to let on, but I also just love this idea of surrounding yourself with beauty. Let’s take that a step further- I want to help create that beauty for other people. 

How can I do that? Well… I could probably start with my attitude. I’m still working on that whole pessimism thing. And, let’s be honest, I should work on not being a bitch half the time! 

I think that seeing beauty in life is often just taking the time to slow down and appreciate. I feel life is beautiful when I spend time with those I love, go on a long walk, or go try something new. 

Does anyone have any suggestions? 

Jillian

How To Make Fancy Hair Ties and Headbands

  

I’m guessing that if you have longish hair, you may have heard of this crazy phenomenon. Normally, elastic hair ties come in bags of approximately eight million (okay, 30ish) for maybe $3.99 at most. Sure, it sucks because you eventually lose all the good colors and in the end are stuck with only some kind of hideous day glow orange and maybe a few almost broken random greens, but certainly nothing you want to use at work. Still, you’re only out four bucks to go buy new ones, so no harm no foul. Several years ago some teenagers girls started selling fold over elastic hair ties, which will run you about $2 EACH. For one. I’m not one to hate on an entrepreneurial spirit, especially from a woman, but come on. The price gap here is just absurd. 

I did the obvious thing. 

I bought two packages. 

Isn’t that what any self respecting woman would do? Spend $12 on nine hair ties (see, I got a DEAL)? 

The thing is, the marketing got to me. They promise to not leave a pony tail bump or pull out your hair, and they’re soooooo pretty. I ended up loving the thin ones I got, but the thick ones are absurd for my fine hair and I use them for things like holding together markers. I am addicted and I wanted more, but I knew this was absurd and I wasn’t buying them. There are so many guides for this online, but here is my quick version anyway. 

Step 1: decide if you have thin or thick hair. I’m positive you already know this. Most people seem to use the 5/8″ fold over elastic, but that doesn’t work for my hair at all. I get the 3/8″. I’ve also given these as gifts to many people, and they seem to work pretty well for them, too. 

Step 2: buy fold over elastic. You can buy it at a craft store like Joann’s, but I haven’t had luck finding the 3/8″- or anything not in a kiddie pattern. I buy mine on Etsy wherever I can find the best deal. Five yards will make about 20 hair ties. 

Step 3: cut the elastic. The great thing about making them yourself is you can make them exactly the size you want, but standard is nine inches for a hair tie and 18 inches for a headband (use these at the gym, they don’t slip too much and keep bangs out of your face!). Don’t pull the elastic when you’re measuring, just lay it flat. 

Step 4: tie a simple knot at the end, then pull it until it’s tight. You can either stop here or finish the ends. 

Step 5: I like to cut the ends at a slant so they look cuter, and touch them to a flame (carefully, with a lighter) so that they don’t unravel. People will tell you they don’t unravel anyway, but I am OCD and I respectfully disagree. 

Bam, you’re done! I paid $8.95 including shipping for 20 yards of fold over elastic. I had four different colors of five yards each, and made 14 hair ties and three headbands with each color. So, I spent $.11 per hair tie and $.22 per headband! 

These would make a great stocking stuffer or birthday gift. Everyone I give them to loves them (or is too nice to tell me differently), and it’s fun to give something useful and handmade. You can put them in a cute tiny pouch, or cut a small piece of cardboard and wrap it in wrapping paper, then put the hair ties around it.

Have fun! Let me know if you try it!

💛 Jillian

What Makes You Feel Beautiful? 

Jenny Feldon

A while ago, I read a book called “Karma Gone Bad” by Jenny Feldon. I thought it would be a fluffy, summer read kind of thing, but it was so much more. Jenny’s writing style reminds me of Cheryl Strayed and her book, “Wild”. She is brutally honest, and let you see her heart and soul. I love honest writing, writing that makes a difference to me long after the book is finished.

The book is about when Jenny and her husband move to India temporarily for his work, and everything that means. The struggle to adjust to the culture, experiencing so many new things, how it affects their relationship; it’s fascinating. It made me think about marriage and how I live my life in a different way. I think it’s really important to constantly examine your life, and this pushed me to do that.

There was one passage in particular that truly struck me (the passage is above). I took a picture before I even had a blog, because it meant that much to me. I liked to go back to it and re-read it. Here is the passage for anyone who can’t see the picture:

“Yeah, sure.” I blushed under his gaze. “Thanks.”

Jay never told me I was beautiful. I’d been wounded by the absent compliment more than once, frustrated that he seemed indifferent to my appearance no matter how much effort I put in. Don’t you think I’m pretty? I’d ask. Of course I do. I married you, didn’t I? he’d answer, as though that were good enough.

I wanted him to think I was beautiful, or at least tell me so, even when I wasn’t. Because I wasn’t, always, but I longed for him to see me that way. My desire for his acceptance and approval hadn’t disappeared the day he put a ring on my finger. Sometimes I’d stand in front of the mirror, staring at myself, trying to see what he saw, wondering what flaw rendered me so ordinary to the person who was supposed to love me most.

But mostly, I let it go. There were other people who filled that void. Whose compliments lifted me up and made me whole. My parents, my girlfriends, my co-workers and classmates. Years before the cultural phenomenon of the Facebook “like,” we traded support like currency, banking a gorgeous here and a brilliant there, knowing that when we needed it, a whole slew of love-isms would come back to us in spades.

-excerpt from “Karma Gone Bad” by Jenny Feldon

Jenny’s words resonated with me, deep down. I had struggled to explain to my husband how I needed positive reinforcement. It always ended up coming out like I was begging for compliments. Compliments that felt awkward to him, and often undeserved to me. When it comes down to it, it was the way I wanted him to see me. Not as I always am in the moment, but as I am as a whole person. The person that should matter most.

This is a danger in relationships, I think. When you have something that you really need, really want to express, but don’t know how. Then you have to find a therapist, book, friend, pet… Et cetera to help you find it.

The plot of my obsession over this thickens. One day I thought, I should blog about that! So I took a chance and I contacted Jenny to see if it would be okay to use the passage. I told her how much I loved it and waited… Not really thinking she would get back to me. THEN SHE DID!! Oh my gosh, I was totally star struck 🙂 Part of her email is below. She was so nice, and I was happy that I let her know I loved her book. How cool is this?!

Jillian,
… THANK YOU for reading and for your incredibly kind and thoughtful words about the passage. It means the world to me that my words resonated with you, and especially the words in that passage, as it was both one of hardest to write, and the most meaningful to me in the entire book… Of course you can quote or photograph the excerpt… Thank you so very much for reading the book and for taking the time to write this email. It touched me deeply and I’m grateful.

All my best,

Jenny

I feel so honored that she wrote me back. It’s wonderful that I was able to touch her! It was a little hard for me to reach out to her (but not as much as it would have been in the past). I was worried she would think I was crazy, and definitely thought she wouldn’t have time to answer. I’m so glad that I was brave, because I feel so much more confident now.

I know that I deserve someone who gets me, but I truly think it is more about me. Getting myself, loving myself, and knowing how to express what I need. That is how I can feel beautiful 🙂

Tell me what you think- and if you have any reading recommendations for me?

Jillian

Five Guilty Pleasures That Cheer Me Up

bear nailsSometimes life is exhausting, and this has just been one of those weeks. It’s time to put some effort into becoming myself again; instead of a crazy, stressed out version of myself. Here’s what I want to do this weekend:

1. I adore this manicure by polishpedia.com. Probably because I’m such a girly girl and love pink and bears. I’m not going to apologize. I will say, I’ve done it before, and pink is actually not a great color. If you’re not a super genius artist, the bear will end up looking like a pig. Also, I didn’t actually watch her video, so maybe that’s part of the problem. But I think I’m going to do it with white and gray.

2. A good work out on my rower while I watch Scandal. I still haven’t seen it!! No one can ruin it for me! Please?! This will give me about 50 minutes of cardio, which should definitely give me happy vibes.

3. A long walk in the park with the Shibas.

4. Undoubtedly, an afternoon nap. I just can’t even tell you how much I want this.

5. This is probably not a guilty pleasure, but I’m going to eat a salad and a green smoothie. I need veggies and vitamins, and I know they will perk me up.

Any other awesome ideas? Tomorrow I get to hang out with my darling M ❤ , and girl time is the ultimate pick me up!

Jillian