Soap Suds

It seems like bar soap has been on an upward trend. A lot of us ladies like our loofahs drenched in body washes, but most of us learned to bathe with bar soaps. Let’s face it, most bar soaps that you get from your local grocers or convenient stores dry out your skin and the ingredients aren’t that great for you either. Body washes seem like a better option because they don’t fall to the bathtub floor quite as easily and marketers make the packaging oh so pretty! Plus it’s easier to empty out those suds on our exfoliating poufs…

Which leads me to this…

Independent soap makers have it figured out and I’m going to share my top bars with you. If you want to suds up with nature’s ingredients while keeping your skin silky smooth and soft, then this is the way to go. I have no problem layering up my pouf with these luxuriously lathering bars either.

Below are five of my favorites!

Hand In Hand 

Clean Water Collection

Not only do they have great bar soaps, they are a company that gives back in more ways than one. First they make your skin feel lovely, but not only your skin, they nourish other people’s skin too!! They have two collections: The Clean Water Collection and the Espere Collection. For every product they sell in the Clean Water Collection, they donate a bar of soap and provide a month of clean water to a child in need.

For every product purchased in the Espere collection, they provide small business loans to entrepreneurs in underdeveloped countries so they can create jobs and provide sustainable incomes for families in their communities.


There are several different scents within the clean water collection which is where you’ll find the bar soaps. The newest scent is coral which is what I’ll show you in my vlog!

Free Reign Farm 

I am in love with this line and so is my man! Free Reign Farm is based in the Appalachian mountains of Tennessee and they have a goat farm. That’s right, this soap is handmade from goats milk and essential oils. It is super duper moisturizing and currently our go-to bar soap. This a great all natural alternative for skin that needs nourishment without additives. My personal favorite bar is the oatmeal and honeysuckle. My nose can’t  get enough of it and neither can my skin!

All of our goat milk soaps are made with the maximum amount of farm fresh goat milk per bar (36%), natural colors (herbs & clays), pure essential oils, non-GMO oils, and a true 1800’s base recipe…These goat milk soaps are great for sensitive and dry skin, better lather, longer lasting, and much more moisturizing.”


As a side note, one of the boutiques that carries this soap also carries their deodorant and the owner says its the best natural deodorant she has tried to date! If you’re looking for something supernatural..oh wait, super natural…you’ll want to dive in to this brand and try all of their products!

Soap & Paper Factory
This line is just absolutely aesthetically beautiful! 

Mission Grove Collection


Ahh, of course the packaging is pretty, but it’s what’s on the inside that counts! The girls at Soap & Paper factory are just like the brand they’ve crafted, beautiful on the inside and out. I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know them and they are down to earth, warm loving souls, who create beauty wherever they go because of who they are (plus they are fun to drink tequila with). They are like the female soap making versions of Anthony Bourdain. Does that make sense to anyone but me? If not, it’s a compliment!

They are soaked up in the craftsmanship and deliver perfection. This unicorn brand (that was supposed to say unique, but unicorn works too) is the definition of quality and you can tell how much thought, creativity, passion and hard work goes into its creation. There are several collections in this line, so it should pretty much please anyone and everyone!

Farmacie Collection

My personal collection favorites are the new Mission Grove collection (which you may have also seen a picture of on my Instagram account) and the Farmacie collection. All these natural handmade soaps are made with Shea butter, essential oils, and love! You must check out their website so you can find a retailer near you!

Oh! And don’t  forget about their holiday collection (yes I started my sentence with “And” and you can get over it)! Some people like to burn this year round (and when I talk about some people I’m talking about me and everyone else that’s ever had the pleasure of smelling this).

A MUST for thr holidays

Roland Pine Collection

Pacifica


pacifica imagesWhile Pacifica make-up has been on an upward trend, let’s hope they hang on to some of the products they started with. Pacifica is an awesome cruelty-free line and one that can be safely used and worn by everyone because if it’s 100% vegan ingredients. I do wear their make-up, but we’ll talk about that on a different day! Their soaps are magnificent, which is a word I rarely use, but they so deserve it. The scents are fresh and each soap is infused with fresh ingredients and ground almond meal which is ideal for exfoliating without being too rough. Personally, my favorite soap is the Tuscon Blood Orange bar. This is one of the top scents in their line in all segments including candles and perfume.tuscan_blood_orange_natural_soapTokyo Milk
TOKYO MILK HEADER
This is yet another line with beautiful packaging, but once again it’s what’s inside that counts. Tokyo milk has delicious scents, creamy lathering capabilities, and are triple milled like many of these other brands. Triple milled means that the soaps are processed through the milling machine at least three times to push out any excess air and water making them more concentrated and long lasting. The Tokyo Milk bars are full of moisturizing Shea butter!

Here is another lesson for you since I’ve mentioned Shea butter before (and wanted to learn myself). Shea butter is a fat extracted from the nut of the African Shea Tree. It’s usually off white or ivory colored and is actually edible!! This doesn’t mean you should eat your soap, but when your mom says she’s going to wash your mouth out with it, don’t be nervous!

Tokyo Milk is a Margot Elena brand that has been around for quite some time. All of her brands are high quality, well constructed, and have a focus on fragrance. With each soap there are top and bottom fragrance notes. One of my favorite scents is the Tour Eiffel which has Linden, Honeyed Rose, Wisteria Petals, and White Musk (I love white musk!). You can see the image below.

TokyoMilk-soap-Tour-Eiffel

Tokyo Milk also has mini soaps, as seen below. These are so delightful, because any baby version of a product always is! They are made the same way and give you the ability to try out several different scents or give to someone else as a gift.

TKM-Collection-Header-shopby_minisoaps_2048x2048

Thanks for checking out these bars and my thoughts on them. Whichever one you choose for shower time, your skin will be grateful to be fed with such  nourishment. Happy shopping! Let me know if you try any of these out and what your thoughts are! Also, many of these brands may be in a local boutique near you. Always support your local business and shop small!

 

Miami Days

This week I have a conference with one of my favorite vendors, Tweezerman (which I’ll be doing a separate blog on later). I decided to come down to Miami beforehand because my best friend lives down here and we needed some girl time. Miami has so much to offer, and while living here wouldn’t be for me, I love visiting! I wanted to show you guys a couple of my favorite moments while down here. If you’re ever in the area, you might want to check out one of these options!

FIT

I got in Friday afternoon, so was really excited for a long, fun in the sun weekend. A few years ago I went on a NYE trip with my bestie Karissa and I got my PADI Open Water Diving certification. I’ve been wanting to dive so bad ever since but I don’t have any close friends where I live that are certified so haven’t made it a priority. Since I was visiting and she hadn’t been diving in Miami yet, she asked if I would be interested and I said YES! It turned out to be pretty overcast all weekend, but that wasn’t going to stop us. Her friend Angela had just gotten certified too and has been on several dives since doing so, and she joined us.

We went to Tarpoon Lagoon dive shop and they set us all up. It was $125 and that included all of our gear (wetsuit, two tanks, bcd, weights, mask, fins, etc). We also paid a little extra so an instructor could take us, which I was glad for since I hadn’t been in a while. I was actually a little nervous, but knew that once I put everything on and got in the water the first time that everything would come back to me and be just perfect.

We went on two dives. The first was Neptune Memorial Reef which was 45 feet deep. It is an artificial reef that resembles Atlantis. It’s also one of the largest manmade reefs ever created, which made it unique and made me want to sing Little Mermaid songs. There were small plaques with sentiments written on them and some were quite quirky.

The second site we dove was Billy’s Barge, which is a 50 foot dive. It was a pretty close drive from the Neptune dive site. It was better than the first dive in my opinion because the site was a little larger (or so it seemed), plus we were able to go through part of the barge which was kind of cool. The coolest thing I saw here was a black and white stingray and I wish I had a picture to show you! This site was quite colorful with all of the beautiful sea life.

For anyone interested in diving here, I have one suggestion. If you are on vacation try to go during the week. During the weekend there are more divers and snorkelers going out and it can get crowded. I found myself kicking others in the face often. Otherwise, just try to keep your distance and don’t follow too closely. It may aggravate the person in front of you!

FAB

On Sundays, we do brunch and we’ll get to the heart of that in the Delish segment. Brunch doesn’t just consist of eating and the large possibility of drinking. It also consists of window shopping and maybe actual shopping if stores are open on Sunday. After our brunch and between hip hang out spots, we walked by this little shop in Southbeach on Alton Rd. called Sparkle and Shine Darling and boyyy (I mean gurrrl) was it cute! They not only had great gifts, but there was a great representation of lines from Just Got 2 Have It (the showroom that I rep for) which I was really excited to see. This store had everything from sleeping masks, graphic tees, and stationary items to baby gifts, puppy presents, and Father’s Day finds! I wanted everything!

Clockwise from top left corner: Pinch Me Emergency Kits, TokyoMilk Dark New body souffles, Lucky Feather Necklaces, Fred& Friends cake topper candelabra, & Bling Sting Pepper Sprays & Ahh!-larms.

DELISH


If you’ve been to Miami, you know there are tons of great places to eat and new hot spots opening up all of the time. Luckily for me, my friends know where the best places are to dine, drink, and dish on the hot topics from their daily lives. We decided to have a girls day out and pick one of these hot spots for a bottomless brunch. My girlfriends (some old and some new) and I got dolled up and had a rooftop rendezvous at Juvia Miami on Lincoln Rd. This restaurant is drop dead gorgeous with a breathtaking view of Miami. I can see how the day and night time views must both be spectacular. The below photo doesn’t even give it justice!

We had the option of sitting inside or outside and since I was the guest for the weekend I got to choose, and I definitely chose outside. It wasn’t too hot and there was a nice breeze which added to the experience. The aesthetics of the restaurant were plush and inviting, providing luxury and elegance at an affordable price. The service was wonderful as well and matched the setting. Our server was very friendly and knowledgeable and the manager made our experience even better by being flexible with our needs.

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They come out with a new menu weekly featuring new fare from what I understand, and they do keep some of the guest favorites available. There is a prix fixed menu from which we all chose, but there was also an option to order bento boxes and other main entrees. We also each chose from their bottomless brunch option and drinking ensued. From the bottomless brunch we were able to order a Mimosa, Prosecco, Bloody Mary, White Pear Sangria, or a Bellini. I think there was one more option that I’m forgetting. Below are images from the 3 course meal I chose as well as images from other dishes that were served.

If you want to give this delish dining spot a try, I definitely suggest going for lunch because the prices are great. For the prix-fixed 3 course meal, the charge was $24.00 and for the bottomless brunch beverages the price was only $23.00. In Miami, especially at a hot spot like this, it is difficult to find such deal. I am giving Juvia a big thumbs up and will definitely cheers to that!

 

Overall, my trip to Miami was fantastic. Next time I’ll hope for sunnier weather and take advantage of the beach. Until then, Ciao Miami!