Oil pulling said to achieve whiter teeth, fresher breath and better oral health
Oil pulling, a traditional Ayurvedic treatment for oral health (as well as dozens of systemic ailments) has been used in India and Asia for 3,000 years. It was introduced to the west about 20 years ago as a way to achieve whiter teeth (without chemicals), fresher breath, cavity and gingivitis prevention and less plaque build-up.
How does it work? Each morning, before eating or brushing teeth, swish one tablespoon of natural, food quality oil—safflower, sesame, olive or coconut—in your mouth for two to three minutes. For optimum results, the recommendation is to increase the swishing time up to 15 minutes.
After swishing, spit out (do not swallow!) the oil. Rinse mouth thoroughly with warm water, then brush teeth.
The theory behind the treatment is this: As the oil swishes around teeth and gums it ‘pulls’ oil-soluble bacteria and other debris into the oil and so detoxifies the mouth, ridding it of viruses, bacteria, parasites and fungi. The theory also suggests that by cleansing the mouth in this way, inflammation is reduced and overall health is improved.
I recently received a sample of GuruNanda Pulling Oil, which contains a proprietary blend of all sunflower, sesame, coconut and peppermint oil, specifically designed for oil pulling, and it harnesses the individual benefits of all three for a more balanced and effective approach.
When using the oil, I found that the peppermint flavor made it easier to swish the oil as directed. However, over a period of time, I found that I was just not able to keep it in my mouth for more than one or two minutes. I could not imagine working up to 15 or even 10 minutes.
Are my teeth whiter? I can’t tell yet. However, since this is a benign and non-chemical practice using only natural products, I’m willing to keep it as part of my oral hygiene routine for a while, just to see if I can achieve the results that regular oil pullers report.
Many regular oil pullers report that their mouth feels clean and fresh and their teeth are whiter. This is a much better home treatment to whiten teeth than commercial tooth whitening preparations which contain very strong chemicals and are fairly expensive. Users also report having clearer, healthier skin after using this natural treatment as well as feeling mentally invigorated. Many people have said that oil pulling helped to curb their appetites and helped them to lose weight.
To be continued.
Korres Black Pine Active Firming Sleeping Oil
Korres Black Pine Active Firming Sleeping Oil
Of all the available beauty and anti-aging therapies, there is none so appealing as one that will do its work while you’re asleep. That’s the promise of Korres Black Pine Active Firming Sleeping Oil–and it delivers on that promise by its firming, lifting and anti-wrinkle action while replenishing essential skin moisture overnight.
Though the product is an oil, it is not greasy; it’s quickly absorbed into the skin. A little–just a couple of drops–will do the job.
There are no “bad” ingredients in this beauty booster: no petrolatum, no parabens, no proplyene glycol, no ethanolamines. Read the label and you’ll find only “good” ingredients: black pine oil, spilantes acmella extract, apricot, jojoba, grape seed, argan and sweet almond oils.
This blend of six oils help restore lipids naturally. Soy bean and wild yam complex strengthens skin while activating lipid production for increased skin elasticity, smoothness, and hydration.
Facial contour is visibly improved, density is restored, and skin is instantly visibly lifted with spilanthes acmella, a natural plant extract. Apple seed extract supports natural collagen synthesis while alaria esculenta extract improves skin elasticity. Black pine polyphenols help restore skin suppleness, volume and contour for noticeable results by morning.
Korres Black Pine Active Firming Sleeping Oil is $62, available at Sephora.
Creamy coconut or rose oil?
Creamy Coconut or Rose Oil? Natural Cleansers for All Skin Types
I understand that a good cleanser is the essential first step in any skincare routine. The problem is, there aren’t that many cleansers around that actually do more than simply remove makeup or surface grime. The right cleanser, however, can do more than just remove dirt and impurities.
And that is why, when I was offered a choice of sample cleansers from Kensington Apothecary, I jumped at the opportunity to try the Creamy Coconut Cleanser. (Yes, the Rose Oil Cleanser was very tempting, but I love coconut in all its forms.) Both cleansers are formulated in ways that any health-conscious, eco-conscious person would love–with certified organic and non-GMO raw materials, sustainably-harvested ingredients, cruelty-free and conflict-free. How beautiful!
When I received my cleanser, I checked the ingredient information: Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Organic Glycerin (plant-sourced), Organic Coconut Pulp, Fig Fruit Extract, Honeysuckle Extract, Japanese Honeysuckle Extract, Xanthan Gum and Citric Acid. No paraben, no phosphate, no sulfate. When I tried the cleanser out, there was no scent, just a smooth creamy feel that left my skin clean and silky smooth. I loved it! According to product information, the honeysuckle extract in the cleanser provides an anti-inflammatory and calming sensation while hydrating and the Aloe vera acts as a protective layer on the skin. The coconut base prevents the cleanser from drying out the skin.
Both the coconut and the rose oil cleansers are sold at some Whole Foods, any spas and online. The price is $24.
Carole Shashona Blue Products
Holiday gifts from Carole Shasona’s collections
Feng Shui master Carole Shashona’s mantra of “better health, wealth and life” guided her creation of a line of candles and sprays. Formulated from ancient Chinese recipes given to Shashona by her feng shui master during an apprenticeship in Hong Kong, the sprays and candles can be used to uplift the spirits or to enhance and assist meditation. (The sprays can also be used as personal fragrances.)
I sampled the Purify Mist ($50, which is infused with wild sage and cedar essential oils that give it a clean and natural earthy scent meant to cleanse your home of negative energy, to reduce personal stress and enhance relaxation and focus.
The Purify Mist can be used in several ways. First I simply sprayed it into my right hand, massaged it into my palms and applied it to my pulse points. I found it very pleasant to be enveloped by this fragrance.
Later in the day, I added about eight drops to my bath water, stepped in and felt my body soaking up the essential oils; I imagined them doing their detoxifying work. (Though I’m not much on showers, the mist can be sprayed on the floor of the shower stall and inhaled for some easy aromatherapy.)
After a bath or shower or to start the day or after a not-so-pleasant experience, you can spray the mist and just step into it, again for some quick healing and to dispel negative energy.
All these functions in just one container make Purify Mist a welcome personal gift or a gift for the home.
A bracelet from Carole’s Spirit Warrior collection
Carole Shashona’s Blue collection of luxurious jewelry is intended to empower while creating balance and harmony. The luminescent Blue color of Carole’s collection is inspired by the Blue Grotto Cave in Capri, Italy where the interior sea walls glow. The magical color activates and purifies, allowing for stress-free serenity. The jewelry includes a signature coin amulet which serves as protection from stress this season. It’s a reminder to take a calming moment throughout the day.
Carole’s mists and candles allow for meditation when you only have a few minutes – at home or on-the-go. Carole understands the stressors among us and aims to alleviate any ill effects with her line of useful and beautiful wellness reminders. Her Blue jewelry collection and on-the-go wellness line is featured in Barney’s New York and Montage Hotel Spa. Some of the world’s most distinguished therapists use her candles and sprays to relax their clients.
A portion of the proceeds from these products goes to such charities as Doctors Without Borders.
Carole Shashona is a fashion and wellness expert, celebrity stylist and author of Feng Shui Chic. Her career began when she became the first American Grand Master in the art of Feng Shui. She uses her design expertise to bring harmony and peace to her clients. Her jewelry collection is a favorite among such stars as Melissa McCarthy, Julie Chen, Beverly Johnson and many others.
Ildi Pekar, celebrity facialist to Miranda Kerr and many of the Vicky S models gives you some innovative skincare tips that ANYONE can do, at home; Call it your supermodel DIY skincare routine
With the Victoria’s Secret show coming to New York in December, this would be a good time to share some DIY skin care tips from celebrity facialist Ildi Pekar, who takes care of Miranda Kerr’s lovely skin, as well as ministers to the facial needs of the Vicky S models.
Supermodel Approved Tips to Hydrated Fall and Winter Skin:
1. Use krill oil/fish oil to hydrate the skin
2. Say NO to over-drying. Avoid scorching hot water. This over dries your skin when the weather is already doing the job.
3. Hello Honey. Use gentle products, anything that is soothing. Honey is a good example.
4. Say NO to coffee. Lay off the caffeine; it dehydrates you and your skin.
5. Hydrate from within. Almonds/Avocados/walnuts are great to eat, and the oils hydrate your skin from within.
6. We love seeds. Pumpkin seeds are also very high in oil. Add some to your diet.
7. Supermodel Skin Mask. Try a DIY Winter Mask (once a week for hydration).
½ Banana, smashed
3 tsp. of raw honey
3 tsp. of sour cream or yogurt (with fat!)
Blend the ingredients
Apply to face
Let sit for 15 Minutes
Rinse with cool water
Autumn-Inspired Treatments at Top U.S. Spas; Unleashing the scents and tastes of autumn, these award winning spas have embraced the season’s best ingredients to create treatments with wellness benefits.
Recognizing pumpkin’s full potential for the skin, SiSpa, the award-winning luxury waterfront spa at two of Florida’s top resorts, Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa and Fort Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa, is offering a Muddy Pumpkin Wrap and Muddy Pumpkin Mani Pedi ($99 each).
o Drenching skin from head-to-toe in pumpkin goodness, the Muddy Pumpkin Wrap (50 minutes) begins with a full-body exfoliation using a nutrient-rich Pumpkin Splendid Dirt that helps to even out skin tone. Next up is a Bourbon Bubbler Kentucky Whiskey Scrub to get skin primed for moisturizer while guests enjoy a soothing scalp and foot massage. After a warm, luxurious shower, guests are bathed in the scents of cinnamon with a hydrating “Red Hot” oil application, leaving the skin re-energized and re-hydrated.
o The Muddy Pumpkin Mani Pedi (100 min) unleashes the unforgettable scents of fall. The treatment includes a Bourbon Bubbler Kentucky Whiskey Scrub, a Pumpkin Splendid Dirt mask, and a massage with “Red Hot” oil and warm stones. Nails on the hands and feet will also be groomed and polished.
Tucked away in the High Peaks of Lake Placid, The Spa at the AAA Four Diamond Whiteface Lodge (the area’s only resort spa), is offering treatments bursting with the flavors of fall paired with a complimentary glass of hot cider (valid Sunday-Thursday through November 2015).
o Re-hydrate the skin from head to toe with an Apple Cider Masque and Massage (80 minutes, $150). This exquisite treatment contains mineral clays from the Canadian seas, iced cider and apple vinegar. Guests will enjoy a rebalancing scalp and full body massage with ultra-nourishing body crème containing apple extracts.
o Designed to clarify and re-balance the skin, the Pumpkin Enzyme Peel Facial (50 minutes, $125) is ideal for dull, congested skin. The clarifying mask exfoliates with pumpkin enzymes to promote a clear and radiant complexion. This treatment is jam-packed with Beta Carotene and antioxidants and will leave skin hydrated, revitalized and ready to face the elements.
Mirbeau Inn & Spa, the idyllic, Monet-inspired retreat located in the storybook Finger Lakes town of Skaneateles, N.Y. is offering two off-menu treatments this fall from the natural skincare company Farmhouse Fresh, including a Pumpkin Latte Body Treatment and a Honey-Butterscotch Rum & Relax Manicure and Pedicure.
o The Pumpkin Latte Body Treatment begins with an invigorating caffeine-infused Whipped Caramel Body Polish that increases circulation and buffs away dull skin. It is followed by an Organic Pumpkin Puree Mud Mask to deep clean, and a soothing massage using Sweet Cream Body Milk Lotion completes the indulgent treatment. The 50-minute version is priced at $130 Monday-Thursday, and $140 Friday-Sunday. The 100-minute version includes a Butter Brulee Whole Milk Bath Soak and is priced at $230 Monday-Thursday, and $255 Friday-Sunday.
o The Honey-Butterscotch Rum & Relax Manicure and Pedicure starts with a Warm Nectar Whole Milk and Chicory Root soaking bath before hands and feet are exfoliated with a combination of butterscotch rum, brown sugar and bran rice oil to soften skin. A Warm Honey Glaze with papaya, pineapple fruit cells, aloe and Vitamin E is then painted over legs and feet, or arms and hands before a dollop of Ginger Sorbet Body Milk Lotion is applied to the skin through a soothing massage. Nails are groomed and polished upon completion of the massage. The 50-minute manicure is priced at $65 Monday-Thursday, and $70 Friday-Sunday. The 50-minute pedicure is priced at $75 Monday-Thursday, and $80 Friday-Sunday.
- The Umstead Hotel and Spa (Cary, N.C.), the elegant AAA Five Diamond, Forbes Five Star retreat known for its serene woodland setting, offers the splurge-worthy Flower Hammam Ritual. With alluring aromas from the fall quince fruit (a relative of the rose) and spicy notes of cardamom, the treatment is filled with restorative autumn ingredients.
Utilizing rich essential oils, the ritual begins with an exfoliation of Lemon Coffee Blossom Scrub. The body is then cocooned in warm white clay, which cleanses and detoxifies the skin. Rich aromas of Moroccan Mint Tea and Orange Quince Mist abound, this ritual concludes with a relaxing application of Cardamom Amber Oil used to warm and relax the body ($145, 75 min; $190, 90 min).