Now we may have just finished a lovely long, four day weekend, but if you've been travelling, catching up with family and friends or just over doing it a little then perhaps you're feeling the need to reach for something special to help you truly unwind and relax. If you're not looking forward to heading back to the stresses and strains of everyday work then why not schedule in a little time for yourself to rest and pamper and renew. Sound good? Then I hope today's post might help to inspire you in the right direction for doing just that.
You may have guessed by now, given some of my previous posts, that I do love the chance for a good pamper and being able to take the time to unwind. It may not be a luxury that people find the time for very often but when you do, it's always lovely to have the best products to hand to treat yourself with.
If you've really been spending the time to take care of yourself, what you eat, getting in some exercise and generally looking out for your own wellbeing, then it's equally nice after all of that effort to jump into the bath or the shower and know that you can reach for something that's going to be just as good for your tired out skin. Not something that's full of chemicals and other nasties, but something that's just entirely fresh and full of goodies.
I'll begin I guess by acknowledging that these are not the cheapest products that you'll find on the market. Certainly at the higher end of the budget that I would personally pay for beauty, although there are definitely products out there with double the price tag. With this in mind I wanted to be really sure that I fell in love with the products, the quality and the meaning and idea behind them. After a thorough testing, including making my long suffering husband try them out a handful of times as well! Plus with getting to know Mia who creates and crafts these products by hand, I really feel they're worth the investment. Not only that but their powder formulation means you use but the tiniest of product upon each use so I'm pretty sure it would take a fair bit of time to work your way through the 100ml full size products available online.
All organic - in fact wildcrafted, and not tested on animals, the myriad of ingredients used are well known for their antioxidant and caring properties. Mia who is the passion behind the brand, hand makes each item, sourcing the ingredients, blending and infusing them and placing them in the lovely quality glass containers.
I loved the sleek, black glass packaging. Solid and smart - they look great on the bathroom shelf and their size would also make them ideal travel sized products. The glass is solid enough that they would be safe, so all round at first glance they are very useful little items indeed.
When I opened my cute sample pot I admit I was at first a little confused. Staring down at the powder I waited for my brain to kick into gear! Finally realising what the accompanying little spoon was for I popped a thumbnail sized scoop into the palm of my hand, added a drop or two of water and mixed it up into a kind of gravelly paste.
This product is like a very light textured, earthy kind of clay. You use it to scrub and basically polish your face as you would an exfoliator. Now my skin can be a little sensitive at the best of times and whilst I like to exfoliate once in a while I have to be careful not to get caught up with a harsh and rough kind of scrub that makes my face angry just by looking at it!
This though was a treat. As I mentioned it's kind of earthy, not a strong scent but it put me in mind of cocoa - not sweet or bitter cocoa but just that kind of pure cacao type of scent. It's a blend of well over 20 fresh ingredients including cacao and cinnamon (which is where the scent must derive) as well as clay, rose petals and various berries.
This was very gentle on my skin and at first, whilst on my face, I wasn't sure if it was really doing all that much. The real magic in this product is when you wash it off. Polished is exactly the right word. It's almost as if your face has been buffed and polished like a piece of furniture (but in a good way!) and you really are left with a smooth, soft canvas on which to moisturise and apply your makeup for the day.
It's a bit like one of those secretive kind of products that they pull out and use when you're at a lovely spa somewhere. When you leave thinking wow what was that?! Plus bear in mind that you need such a small amount and would probably only use it perhaps once a week at most. So it's definitely a lovely product to have on the shelf for when you feel like your skin needs a little buffering and renewing.
Again just the smallest spoonful in the palm of your hand, mixed with water will yield a charcoal like mask ready to apply to your face.
Now this mixing process might seem a bit more involved than you're used to with a regular cream-based face mask but the results are well worth it. As you let it soak in for the 10-15 minutes that it's on your face you can certainly feel it tightening and when you wash it off you feel visibly refreshed. A treat for the skin, all natural and all good.
Just be careful not to let anyone lose with this and a set of fresh white towels - voice of experience!
It was equally nice to have a chance to get to know the woman behind these lovely products as part of the whole process. So in the spirit of The What Now Blog and my personal passion for interviews and learning about the people behind either the career, the product or the idea, I was able to quiz Mia about her love for what she does, as well as find out what's important to her when it comes to unwinding and de-stressing. I thought it would be nice to include a little of what I learned as a final summary to todays post.
FIVE MINUTES WITH THE PASSION BEHIND THE PRODUCTS:
1. Mia - how do you motivate yourself and give yourself positive energy especially in times of stress?
Before I do anything, I always attach an intention and a 'why' to it. When I'm stressed I remind myself to go back to my 'why'. It usually puts things into perspective for me and motivates me to carry on.
I look at the fact that I'm really just a speck in the bigger scheme of things. I have to keep looking down, and not up, so I'm always grateful for whatever is on my plate… whether it be a good thing or a more challenging situation. Ever since having my son, I usually just look at his smile and am filled with happy butterflies and twinkles - that helps too!
2. How do you conquer your biggest fears at work and in life?
My biggest fear is regret, regret for not trying. I spent many years of my life trying to figure out how to overcome this fear - many times all I could do was cry. After having to pick myself up so many times, I was exhausted and knew I needed to change this pattern.
I learnt that the solution was to allow myself to feel the fear, and harness that energy to then dare myself. And because my fear was of regret - it left me with no choice but to take the bull by the horns and to just push on through.
If things don't happen as you'd expect today, well, you try harder tomorrow.
3. What is your biggest passion when it comes to your business?
Noer Organics started off as a means to meet my own skincare needs. I craved complex and intricate formulations, using the purest ingredients then presenting themselves in a beautiful vessel. Much like a symphony, skin nutrition for me needed to be an entirely harmonious affair.
My great need was to heal using the very nature of nature - its untampered, uncapped wildness. I meticulously ensure every single ingredient is as pure and potent as nature intended it. I spend a lot of time sourcing ingredients and only pick what will leave a zero-carbon footprint. The creation process of each product excites me tremendously because it is a beautiful union of art and science - precisely measuring out ingredients, then blending and swirling each elixir; infusing them to maturity with gemstones before dispensing into the best glass containers. I could do this tirelessly for days on end.
My end goal is to be able to share these poetic pieces of skincare with others who seek pureness for themselves.
4. What do you like to do personally to unwind and relax?
I'm fortunate enough to live a stones throw away from the beach. I take many walks there and spend time watching the waves. There's something about mentally recording every wave that comes to shore and then disappears. It hits the shore and is then brought back again, but will never be the same wave as it was before. I also paint, read books, listen to classics and jazz and scribble about in my notebook. I'm an old soul I suppose.
5. What's your idea of the perfect weekend?
It would centre around time with my family - my husband and young son. Perhaps a picnic on the beach (with good food in a picnic basket or two) and blowing bubbles in the park. A stay-cation at a fancy hotel might be lovely too!
If you're looking to try out a new skincare regime that is truly representative of taking good care of your skin, as well as caring about the environment around us, Noer Organics could be the choice for you. I hope you've enjoyed learning a little more and perhaps will find some inspiration to help you unwind and renew. We all need time to rebuild and relax - don't be scared to do so every now and then - you deserve it!
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Noer Organics, who asked me to try out their products and share my honest thoughts. All opinions, as always, are 100% my own.