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Gemma’s Gem of the Week: Emotional Intimacy

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Emotional intimacy stands on a level of its own. This deeper level of vulnerability and understanding adds a heightened layer to intimacy overall. It’s undeniable that there’s something incredibly alluring about this type of closeness.

I was recently having an intellectual discussion with someone that aligned with this powerful description of intimacy. Releasing the veil and allowing yourself to be seen and heard is a glorious thing. When people are synced up to the point of subconsciously understanding feelings of mutuality without verbal confirmation, I swear it’s life-altering. Because of this, I was reminiscing on countless, life-changing experiences of mine. In the most meaningful moments of my life, I’m not over-thinking. I’m not worrying. I’m surrendering to the sheer beauty and freedom of the moment.

Letting go like that is other-worldly. Suddenly, it doesn’t feel as tempting to hand over power to the things that are not in our best interest. Soul-sharing to me has never been about exclusivity; but rather, the encouragement of inclusivity and fluidity. 

Intimacy normally falls under the common definition of “pleasure”, specifically “physical pleasure.” While this is one definition, there are various meanings linked to the word. There is intimacy in deep listening. There is intimacy in developing trust with someone, and navigating the more challenging days. There is intimacy in hard discussions and complex emotions. Let’s not limit our accomplishments and progress to the things that solely feel overly grand, joyous, or easy. It is a gift to be able to navigate the obstacles that come naturally throughout this human experience. There is far more beauty out there than we are programmed to see. The less we box ourselves in, the more naturally this clarity can reveal itself. 

Love and intimacy are fluid and ever-changing. They were never about control or attachment. Attachment often means “the fear of losing someone or something.” Finding the ability to release that frame of thinking creates space for love and freedom to rise to the surface.  

To further elaborate, I’ll present you with this question that I heard recently: Why is the measure of love loss? Why is love so often mixed with personal sacrifices or control? How about we start seeing love as unconditional? How about we stop categorizing love as being “as selfless as possible”, and instead, embrace the idea of loving ourselves even more? Love and intimacy also weren’t built strictly for romantic relationships. I have absolutely found soulmates in some of my dearest friends. Does the fact that there’s a lack of romantic interest suddenly mean that this relationship is inherently less? Absolutely not. 

The wonderful thing about emotional intimacy is how much it truly teaches us. It teaches us the art of seeing. It teaches us the art of listening. There is so much potential to learn more and more about ourselves and the world surrounding us. And if anything, emotional intimacy can heighten the benefits of physical intimacy. These levels of trust and understanding can be reflected in many ways. 

When someone is openly expressing and sharing their passions, this to me is alluring. An intimate moment can be found in something as simple as sharing music. It can be someone surprising you with a homemade baked good. It can be someone writing to you saying they were thinking of you, or recommending a favorite movie that reminded them of you. Emotional intimacy never ceases to enhance the love and wonder I have when it comes to building genuine relationships with the ones I love.

Gemma Farquhar is the writer of "Gemma's Gem of the Week" and author of "The Shape of Something New." She is passionate about the future of storytelling and welcomes all ages to her column.

Beauty

Deluvia Miracle Aloe Cream For The Softest Skin and Skin Healing

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For over 3 years I have had a skin condition Ichthyosis, where my body grows excess skin. Ichthyosis is a group of about 30 skin conditions that cause skin dryness and scaling. The condition gets its name from the Greek word for fish because the skin looks like fish scales.

People with this condition lose the protective barrier that keeps moisture in their skin. They also make new skin cells too quickly or shed old cells too slowly. This leads to a buildup of thick, scaly skin. I have mine on my rear end and it is so embarrassing even though most people can not see it. It goes from mild to out of control and there is no rhyme or reason for the condition. .

Ichthyosis can’t be cured, and I have tried every treatments and ointment. Some work, but mildly. Then I was sent Deluvia Miracle Aloe Cream ($40) sold on Amazon and ShareASale and viola not totally cleared but barely there.

This Aloe-Powered hydration is enriched with Aloe Vera, and it effectively hydrates and soothes dry, irritated skin.

It calms Eczema, Psoriasis, Burns, and more, offering targeted solutions for various skin concerns. By offering deep moisturization, it uniquely penetrates the skin, provides lasting hydration. It also reducing fine lines and wrinkles.

I understand now why they call this product a miracle.

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Beauty

Wellness and Beauty in June

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June is an amazing month to feel your very best. The sun is shinning and the weather is lovely. Make yourself feel the same kind of bliss with some of our favorite things this month.

Yum Cha Tea Company

With over 250 tea varieties, Yum Cha Tea Company is at the forefront of holistic wellness with its wide assortment of delicious offerings. We fell in love with their incredible Mushroom Tea Collection. Such delicious offerings as Creamsicle Cordyceps, Forestberry Sangria and Cordyceps Chai are both original and scrumptious. Simmer and sip all of their wonderful offerings that promote wellness and comfort as well as help boost immune systems and your mental and physical health.

Nicole and Zac together out of love created this fantastic brand that also has a giveback component.

“We love bees, and we can’t live without them. We know bees are dying all over the world. Our mission is to save the bees through teaching others about how they can help,” they state. “Each year, we allocate funds from sales of all products to pay for the creation of the beehives we plant. We buy and lend gear to new students that want to learn, until they’re interested enough to buy their own. Each yard maxes out at about 25 hives at a cost of about $30 to $50 each (depending on materials and how many boxes are added). During harvest, we bring the community together, provide a honey extractor, wax removers etc so everyone can learn the full process. Students provide their own ball jars, buckets etc so they can take what they want home. We then show the students how to package the excess for retail if they wish. With every purchase, you help make all of the above happen. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”

Visit HERE for more info and to order from this wonderful small business.

Amalgam

Amalgam’s Heal Thy Roots – Hair Growth Oil is a necessity when it comes to haircare and scalp routines that are the foundation for thick, luscious hair.

Rooted in a deep respect for nature’s bounty and a commitment to purity, this vegan, and cruelty-free product is thoughtfully crafted with 23 plant-based ingredients. Made with 100% natural ingredients and free of fragrance and color.

This light-weight pre-wash scalp treatment featuring an exclusive blend of exotic herbs (and zero essential oils, artificial colors, fragrances, or sulfates) is expertly formulated to accelerate new hair growth and control hair loss, leaving hair looking noticeably fuller, thicker, and healthier in a few months. The vegan formula works beautifully on all hair types, including color or chemically treated hair, and is intended for men and women.

For more information, visit HERE.

 

Cover art by Mari Lezhava on Unsplash

 

 

 

 

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Beauty

The Ultimate Wellness and Beauty Summer Guide

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Summer is about to kick off in a gorgeous way.

Our ultimate annual wellness and beauty guide this season has been carefully curated with top editor picks that will bring you bliss. From beauty products to health companies, we have brought together a list of outstanding items that will shine as bright in your life as the summer sun. The time to feel and look remarkable is now.

For a Perfect Summer Glow –

Transform your skin with the power of Glutathione with Auro Skincare. Dr. Nayan Patel ’s newest venture into skincare is right on target to bring you a perfect summer glow. The line showcases products that have potent antioxidants and adaptogens delivered with the Auro GSH Antioxidant Delivery System. Transformative results are set to come your way and there is no better way to discover the power than an introduction to the company’s travel kit which highlights how you can allow your skin to absorb Glutathione and other antioxidants like Vitamin C and Resveratrol in a deeper way than ever before.

Auro Skincare is a protocol of potent antioxidant formulas powered by the patented, first-of-its-kind Auro GSH Antioxidant Delivery System. By combining powerful ingredients and technology, Auro Products penetrate to the deeper layers of your skin providing you with results powered from the inside out.

For a Perfect Summer Smile –

Davids sensitive+whitening nano-hydroxyapatite premium toothpaste with peppermint is the refreshing thing you need for an amazing smile this summer. Harnesses the regenerative power of nano-hydroxyapatite to relieve tooth sensitivity, repair enamel, remove plaque, smooth the tooth surface, and naturally whiten teeth. We love the line that focuses on safe and clean ingredients that are fluoride free and SLS free. The line also carries a great 100% medical grade stainless steel professional tongue scraper designed to lift bacteria and debris quickly to make your tongue and mouth healthier and cleaner.

For Perfect Summer Hair –

Peter Coppola is a fantastic woman-owned company named after the famous stylist who developed keratin systems, Peter Coppola. Offering more than just treatments, the company showcases a vast array of products that you will fall in love with.

Some highlights we love are Total Repair Smoothing Shampoo, which instantly repairs your hair. The deeply moisturizing sulfate-free shampoo weightlessly strengthens, smooths, and restores lackluster locks with a unique blend of Keratin and Ceramides. The protection to combat humidity of the season is fantastic along with color vibrancy throughout the day. We also love the Infusion Anti-Frizz Cream, which keeps hair tidy, shiny and soft-to-the-touch with ultra-lightweight cream. Infusion Anti-Frizz Cream keeps curls under control and cuts blow-dry time while creating a barrier to block humidity for hair that is sleek and smooth until your next shampoo.

 

NEKKO is a pioneer of scalp and hair treatments geared toward achieving healthy and voluminous results. Believing in the principle that we must not neglect the scalp’s health and vitality; they showcase products that are meant to enrich with a carefully selected blend of plant-based ingredients and amino acids, strengthen and fortify hair and scalp with regular use,

NEKKO Scalp Oil makes a difference for those with a variety of hair issues. Cold-pressed to make for a gentle peeling effect and to purify the scalp, it removes loose dandruff flakes from the hair. This unique formula also works to regulate oily scalps. Delicately cleanses and moisturizes the scalp, which is important so much more in the summer as we expose ourselves to more sweat outdoors. You will love the way your hair feels over a few weeks.

For the Perfect Summer Manicure –

Radiant Cosmetics viral Nail Growth Oil lives up to all the hype.

Founder and TikTok influencer Ruth Ismayelyan and her vegan brand have overwhelmingly captivated beauty enthusiasts for good reason. Her cuticle oil has a unique formulation that after using in a week creates a noticeable difference. Nails look shinny and they start to grow in stronger. The results are really that quick. Nourishing your nails has never been easier and the vitamins in the formula also give a great boost to your overall nail health.

Ruth’s brand has also expanded to lipsticks, lip liners, and lash and brow serums. Products are cruelty-free, paraben-free, vegan, and non-GMO.

Zoya has the perfect polish shades to achieve the classic and beachy vibe for you any day this season. From colors that elevate summer to a product that lasts and shines through with true beauty, we adore everything about this brand.

Shades such as Lillian with a faded aquamarine with a glossy cream finish and Lauren with warm, pink-kissed light beige with very fine gold and copper metallic shimmer are our favorites. They are elegant and fun. To add to the joy is the fact that Zoya is non-toxic and cruelty-free.

For Perfect Summer Social Media Posts –

KISS is set to make all your summer social media posts look radiant. The newest lash collection, designed for a “no makeup, makeup” aesthetic with full sets and a brand-new half lash style is perfect for summer. This trend is about flawlessly imperfect lashes, featuring uneven, sparsely distributed lash patterns for a remarkably natural effect.

We love the way they are easy to apply, comfortable, and incredibly easy to apply. The lash lift effect emphasizes a longer and fuller lash look. Best of all the brand is cruelty free, vegan friendly, and good for contact lens wearers.

For a Perfect Summer Body –

Nuebiome is a leading plant-based and bioferment skincare brand dedicated to harnessing the power of nature and science to deliver clean, effective beauty solutions. Formulated with potent botanical extracts and biofermented ingredients, Nuebiome products are designed to nourish the skin while respecting the planet.

We love their Prebiotic Magnesium Muscle Recovery Flakes. They are a combination of magnesium flakes for muscle relaxation, paired with prebiotic bioferments for skin balance. This salt is designed to provide a soothing and restorative experience, promoting well-being and skin vitality. Crafted with 100% magnesium chloride for a relaxing bath or foot soak.

Reveka Skincare’s Tea Tree + Peppermint Body Bar is a perfect way to find balance and beauty for your skin. Developed by a woman named Darlene who understands the deep principles of clean and healthy skincare products through the benefits of topical magnesium, this soap is a gamechanger this summer season. Reveka is crafted with clean ingredients including no preservatives or dyes and are 100% made in the U.S. The rich lather of Reveka’s soap makes it perfect for shampoo, soap, and shaving cream. It’s made with tea tree, peppermint and shea butter and will hydrate your skin to the next level.

And the best part is the Magnesium Chloride from the Ancient Zechstein Seabed. Two weeks of use and you will see the difference ass use promotes new tissue growth and can help alleviate common skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and acne.

 

For Perfect Summer Wellness Sips –

Summer is all about fabulous workout in the sun. Head to the park for a run or do yoga on the beach and know you have a perfect drink to be by your side with PWR LIFT.

The divine taste is refreshing and amps you up for an ultimate session followed by glorious recovery and hydration. This incredible electrolyte-rich, flavored protein water drink is infused with 10g whey protein and B vitamins.  Scrumptious flavors of Berry Strawberry, Lemon Lime, Blueberry Pomegranate and Orange Mango refuel you in a delicious way from head to toe. Help give your body the recovery, strength and hydration it needs with zero sugar and  be grateful to add power to your workout.

 

 

 

 

Kubo Tea is a great way to get amazing clean energy this summer. Crafted with organic green tea caffeine, their blends offer a revitalizing boost without the crash. With more caffeine than traditional teas and coffee, Kubo Tea activates your metabolism and increases energy levels. We love the taste and the pumped-up vibe without the jitters. It helps you concentrate, and you feel the amped up love during workouts and long summer walks on the beach.

Cover art by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

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Glow Up with Anastasia Beverly Hills Beauty Balm

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Glow up! This is the ultimate beauty find.

To use the first-ever B.B. Cream in stick form, blending skincare and makeup with 8 ingredients for a radiant complexion is like waving a magic wand over your face. It sizzles with a dash of whimsical joy and everlasting effect is breathtaking.

Sheer to light coverage for a natural, glowing look comes with just a swipe – yes a simple swipe and a blend creates a divine look that will engulf you in true and divine beauty that you will forever appreciate. No skills needed. No over the top qualifications. Just blend on your skin and discover a simple product with over 4000 swipes for every stick that paints a simply gorgeous portrait on you every single time.

Feel the glow with a simply wonderful effect of glow, moisture, definition, shape and perfect pigmentation every single time you use it on every little part of your face.

Stated perfectly by the OG beauty specialist and ABH President Claudia Soare: Beauty Balm is the introduction to the future of skincare for ABH. I wanted to create something that bridges the gap between ABH and the clean customer, the intent is to welcome that customer while still being ourselves. Beauty Balm is not a 
stick foundation; it is literally tinted skin care in a stick for the first time ever. It has all the same attributes as a BB cream, 
while being in a stick form that makes it super easy to apply
at home or on-the-go. Think of it like a skincare-makeup
hybrid, it is a treatment product that happens to be tinted. It’s 
the easiest, simplest makeup that makes you look great in
two seconds. The portable component really caters to quick
and easy application. You can literally apply it in the car, it’s
that easy. You just apply it directly to skin and blend with 
fingertips, it’s like applying skincare, no brush required. It 
gives you a natural, fresh-faced look, truly the perfect ‘no 
makeup makeup’ product. I can’t wait for you to try it.”

For more information, please visit HERE.

 

 

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Getting Ready for Oscars – Red Carpet Skin with Biophora

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The Academy Awards are less then two weeks away and for many that means getting red carpet ready.

It is a time of great joy, but there are also many sleepless nights and stress which can be harmful to skin. A great solution to get your complexion ready to shine beautifully on the scene is with Biophora.

We tried their at-home products designed to reduce bacteria buildup and loosen debris that clogs the pores. The goal of the brand is to increase cellular turnover resulting in normally functioning pores, which are able to release the flow of oil. In less than two weeks there was a visible notice. Skin was clearer without irritation or dry out, which often happens with products when you are trying to get rid of acne or breakouts.

The Biophora Acne/Oily Kit is perfect and includes day and night treatments with:

We interviewed Biophora President Madeline Wolkove and were thrilled with her feedback and inspirational advice on how to achieve great skin this season.

More and more adults seem to have acne issues. The change in environment and more factors lend to it. Why do you think your
product is so revolutionary to help adults in this day and age?

The Biophora Acne protocol / “recipe” has been developed in a way that reduces the frequency and severity of acne over time. Our protocol uses topical exfoliants like AHA’s, BHA’s digestive Enzymes and Retinol to loosen the stickiness or “glue” that holds dead skin cell together, increasing the turnover rate and allowing for these cells to be exfoliated from and out of the pore more rapidly. The results of this is that normal
functioning pores that are able to release the flow of oil.


What are the top three things that make your product line stand out above others in the same category?

The top three things that make Biophora unique in this space are:

1) Our line has the highest % of acids for home use on the market.
-our protocols have been designed to stack acids like – Glycolic, Salicylic , Kojic Ferulic and have them work in a synergistic manner to exfoliate, brighten, smooth and reduce the appearance of crepiness, blemishes , rough texture ,sun damage and age spots.

2) Biophora is an extremely affordable technically advanced skin care line – was built on the principle that anyone can attain healthy, toned and more youthful looking skin.

Clean and high percentage of effective ingredients represent the majority of the line. An example of this is: Pure C- This is our Vitamin C which has one main ingredient 100% pure topical vitamin C – this retails for $68.
Multivitamin Freeze Mask – is a clay-based mask rich in Collagen, Elastin and Vitamins A, E, C, D3, K and B Complex – this retails for $66
Bioactive Gel – an effective gel to be used every day to Brighten, lighten and reduce hyperpigmentation and the appearance of acne scarring. This
contains Glycolic , Salicylic acids and Arbutin. – this retails for $68

3) The Synergistic effect of our products being stacked

The entire line was created in collaboration with doctors, plastic surgeons and dermatologists to leverage science to improve the effectiveness of ingredients being used in combination with each other to develop superior results.

The line seems to masterfully understand the balance between the need to clarify and moisturize skin at same time?

Biophora was developed as a very balanced line. Our main objective is to stimulate cell turnover while periodically increasing acid percentage to drive a deeper treatment safely and consistently. This helps to bring up and rid dead melanocytes to the surface of the skin – making replenishment and repair
more effective. For example, our Normal/Element Exposed and Acne/Oily kits our systematically designed to increase acid percentage with the first three products in the regime, starting from 1% glycolic in our Bioactive Cleanser, 3% in our Bioactive Solution and 8% in our Bioactive Gel. This is then followed by the remaining products in the kit providing the nourishment, hydration, and protection that the epidermis needs after cell
turn over has taken place.

The goal is to create a synergistic balance of cell renewal and replenishment catered for each individual person. Due to the wide variety of products our line offers, we have the ability to prescribe very specific and appropriate treatment plans geared for every skin type and condition. Our DermaRich Moisturizer is one of our best-selling items and is rich in peptides and vitamins, while Antibac Veil is a more light-weight cream that works amazingly to absorb oil, clear congestion and mattify the skin. Acids can be increased or subsided due to sensitivity levels – ranging from products such as Gentle AHA Cream
with 6% lactic acid to our AHA Active Gel with 10% glycolic acid. The beauty of our line is that it is extremely versatile to create the perfect regime for any type of skin issue or concern. One size does not fit all when it comes to skincare.


Your products are gentle. Why is it important for consumers to have something that fits the needs of sensitive skin – even if they don’t think they have it. The older I get the more sensitive I am to products that are not good – this is great for me in just one night – felt a nice difference in the morning.

As we age, the skin begins to thin. We lose adipose tissue, collage production declines and elasticity tend to break down. This will naturally happen to everyone which will automatically increase sensitivity, even if

most of our lives we’ve never experienced any sensitivity issues.

It is important to understand the difference between sensitivity caused from aging, a product causing it or a natural allergic reaction to ingredients. Biophora has taken all of these factors into deep consideration by providing a line that is free of gluten, parabens,
hydroquinone, triclosan and added fragrances. We have scientifically implemented safer, yet effective skin lightening agents such as arbutin, kojic acid and licorice root extract that are all derived from natural sources. These ingredients are proven safer, without compromising their incredible efficacious abilities.


For getting ready for Oscars Week, using a product for a few weeks can make a difference normally or course with constant use. What would be your top recommendations for someone using your product to get ready for a big event in a few weeks or a month using your products, especially to get clearer skin and red carpet ready?

The objective here is to show up to the Oscars with plump and
glowing skin. Based on your skin type my recommendation is that you commit to one of our protocols by starting one of our Skin System Kits. They have been designed to accommodate all major skin conditions – Element Exposed / Aging, Sensitive Skin, Rosacea and Acne. Ideally, you would want to start this skin system 3-4 weeks out and incorporate the use of our Pure C daily to this as well as our Enzyme Exfoliator and
Multivitamin Freeze mask weekly. With just these few products and simple protocol your complexion will be brightened, smoothed, and plumped.

With the Oscar’s coming up you will already notice a difference.
For the day of the Oscar’s, if you can’t get into your Esthetician, we have created a home “Awards Show or Party Prep At Home” treatment that you can do before you go to get your hair and makeup done.

Here are the steps for the day of: The Party Prep Kit
In a rush for the party? This quad of incredibly crafted products developed by Canadian Estheticians is a fast and effective super-charged boost for your skin! This can be utilized to prep your face prior to makeup application for a big night out. The Party Prep kit includes the Biophora Bioactive Solution, Biophora Enzyme Exfoliator, Biophora Multivitamin Freeze Mask, and Biophora Derma Rich Moisturizer. With regular use, this at home combination will leave your skin bright and healthy all awards season long.

Bioactive Solution – A skin toning conditioner with 3% Glycolic Acid and a blend of de- congesting botanicals such as Eucalyptus Oil, Vitamin C and Kojic Acid mean to help lighten, brighten, and support anti-oxidization.

Biophora Enzyme Exfoliator – A gentle and powerful blend of Fennel, Pineapple, and Papaya fruit enzymes with exfoliating Mineral beads to enzymatically dissolve debris and promote cellular turnover. Your skin is sure to look smooth with a beautiful glow!

Biophora Multivitamin Freeze Mask – A revitalizing clay-based mask with Collagen, Vitamins and Elastins. This not only soothes the skin, but also hydrates, reduces inflammation, and brightens the skin. A bonus is that it is also easy to remove once the mask dries down.

Biophora Derma Rich Moisturizer – Dense in nutrients and advanced hydration, this luxurious moisturizer contains Green Tea, Grape Seed Extract and; Vitamin E. It is perfect to plump and nourish while calming Chamomile will help to soothe the skin.

Lastly, we would be remiss if we did not mention our Golden Glo for the day of the Oscars – Take this serum to your makeup artist and let them do their magic with it. Not to mention, the cocktail of vitamins A, B, & D3 along with Hyaluronic Acid will no doubt give you that celebrity glow!

 

Cover art by  Oliver Johnson on Unsplash

 

 

 

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