Sunday, February 6, 2011

Revisiting Some Favorites For It's Raining Reviews

Thumbs Up!
Cherry City Bath & Body Angel Food Cake scent is manohmanohman! It smells soooooo good! They have hundreds of scents to choose from to customize your bath and body products, and I have yet to come across a bad one. I am particularly intrigued by the cuticle oil for a blissfully scented manicure. This particular scent grabbed me because it’s sweet without being cloying and truly smells like fresh out of the oven cake.  This is the perfect scent for daytime wear, and even co-workers who don’t like perfumes will like it, since you smell like baked goods. They’re constantly adding new products and scents, and often ask for customer feedback on their Facebook page so they can offer what’s most wanted- it’s nice to see an artisan who listens to her fanbase. Bonus: All products are 100% vegan!

New Kokokahn Line!
I have previously shared my love for Kokokahn lip balm, and I've just been informed by the company that in honor of Earth Day, they will be launching a totally vegan line. They're also about to introduce a lavender salt scrub, which I intend to keep always on hand, as lavender is one of the few things that really truly and literally chills me out and helps me sleep. The combination of medications that I take for my lupus makes me have these INSANE night sweats, but when I use a lavender based product before I go to bed it's either not as intense or avoided all together. I also love doing scrubs before I go to bed as it makes me fell all baby soft and squeaky clean, so this one is tailor made for me, it seems.  The lavender is not yet available, but I was lucky enough to score a preview to try out and I was astonished! All of their body scrubs are made with the highly prized Himalayan Pink Salt. When I get paid I'm going to hop over there and pick up some Coconut Lime Salt Scrub for my morning "howdy-do" because it’s got to be just as incredible (they also have Coconut Orange, Floral Harmony, Earth & Spice, and a Chocolate Peppermint Sugar Scrub.) 

Another one of their products I'm really excited about right now is the Kokokahn Coconut Body Balm. I just received this the other day and it's truly astounding.

From their website:

"Coconut Body Balm
Nourish & Heal
Nourish and heal hands, cuticles, elbows, feet, knees or any other dry parts of your body. Or use as an all over hydrating & healing night mask or daily moisturizer. A decadent tropical coconut aroma especially good for after sun care, dry winter skin and sensitive skin.

All of the oils, butters and beewax used in our body balms are unrefined and in their natural state leaving all the wonderful health benefits Nature intended.
Ingredients: Certified Organic Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Certified Organic Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Organic Beeswax, Certified Organic Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter"
I LOVE this company!  I just bought a new pair of open backed shoes, and was horrified to see that my heels look like those nasty things hanging off of the back of some grody person's flip flops at Wal Mart. Being on my feet all day wreaks havoc on my tootsies but one swipe of this balm and they looked like someone else's feet. Seriously, I was amazed at the enormous difference this stuff made with just one application. You'd have thought I'd just paid some pedicurist tons of money to shave my feet or something. Seriously wonderful stuff!

Not only does Kokokahn make wonderful products, but there is such an enormous amount of information on their web page about everything from aromatherapy to natural health and body care.

I've talked about SBS Teas before, after receiving samples in various samplers. I used my samples and found them so delightful that I HAD to order from them.  Well blended teas nourish your body and spirit. Also, I like to take my tea leaves after brewing my tea and finding uses for them as everything from a facial treatment to plant fertilizer.

As I type, I am drinking a mug of their decaf orange pekoe, which has a sweet marshmallow-ey smell and flavor undertone. Num!

I was initially astounded simply by their great prices, and then I was astounded by the quality of their offerings. If you have any interest in drinking well thought out tea blends put together by a woman run company then go to their site!

Oh! I just saw that everyone who orders from them is entered to win a $25.00 gift certificate!

I just received my order, they have a tea grab bag that's less than $8.00 with an assortment so you can try out lots of different flavors! They also included a ton of free samples. They not only carry teas, but also accessories and coffees!

Don't take my word for it, here's a guest review from my co-worker Laure. (She's quite the tea afficianado and had expressed an interest in trying out the one I was drinking at work the other day, a gingerbread  cream. She did it right and took it home and drank it in the bath while savoring it like a fine wine.)

"thanks for the opportunity to taste the are my impressions:
not much aroma but full, great depth, as you said - complex, with round, almost apple-cheeked flavor. Enjoyed the in-mouth expansion...remember "pop rocks"? It felt like that explosion as the flavors poofed in my mouth. The aftertaste was surprising with breath intake freshness as if a mint had been chewed but not a mint flavor, just the sensation of tingling, clean coolness. There was no woody, dry taste that often comes with commercial teas. I imagine this would be very good as an iced tea, too."

I love the jewelry at Hippie Chick Jewelry and Design
The pieces are really well made and sturdy,despite the delicate appearance.  Custom hand dyed beads, Swarovski pearls and crystals, sterling silver and semiprecious stone….. they’re all in abundance in these pieces.  All price ranges are covered with inexpensive earrings and bracelets to pricier (but still completely reasonable) elaborate necklaces and watches.  The artisan will custom make for you almost anything your heart desires, so if you have an idea in your head but not the means to execute it- just drop her a line and she’ll be happy to accommodate.  She will also take current designs and custom make them to your specifications for things like stone and color preferences.

Memories by Olenka
specializes in primitive and grungy style paper products, including doing custom orders and designs. I keep a handful of the cards on hand since they’re unique, adorable and interesting. It’s always a good sign when someone spends as much time gazing at the card or gift tag as they do the gift and I love to see when I go back to someone’s house and they have it up on the refrigerator (or in the case of a gift tag, framed in a bitty little frame and hung on the wall!) This store also has prim style web page layouts that have gotten great feedback. 

 I recently tried out some handcrafted scent tarts from Tuxedo Enterprises
in Midnight Rose, Cucumber Green Tea and Cinnamon Coffee. I'm burning one literally right at this moment! It smells divine and is subtle enough not to be overpowering but still put out a great scent. When I left the room then came back in, I was struck by what a pretty garden rose smell wafted from the room. They have a very true aroma and smell EXACTLY like what they are meant to. They last a pretty good long time and are made with palm wax, a fairly unusual entry in the wax tart market.
These are a great price too -from 99 cents for a single tart to only $12.29 for a whole bag of 25.

 From the always awesome Om Shanti Handcrafts
is what has to easily be one of the most rich, delightfully scented soaps it has ever been my pleasure to sniff. These healthy sized goat's milk and honey soaps in Mulling Spices are divine! Words cannot express how amazing this scent is. I also received 2 pretty muslin bags stamped with their logo- in one bag 2 large soap samples in Vanilla Rose and Tangerine Vanilla and in the other one a bag FILLED with Pumpkin Spice Soap Minis and a lavender citrus cuticle salve! With the code PLE25 you'll receive a full 25% off your order.
They also carry tons of other natural vegetarian bath and body products, including massage oils,  lip balms and powders as well as offering gift sets and sample packs that allow you to QUITE inexpensively try a number of products in their  delightful line.  You also can’t go wrong with a store that guarantees their products to be “100% crap free”! 

If you like your packaging to be as intriguing and interesting as your gift, check out the lovely handcrafted origami boxes from Eco Vintage Vegan

I’m jealous since I have yet to be able to master the art of origami. These are well made and quite hearty.

The same person who runs Eco Vintage Vegan also has Crude Company
specializing in metaphysical stone jewelry. Because these are made from hand gathered and prepared stones, no two will ever be the same, just as Mother Nature intended.  The jewelry pieces are shipped in an Eco Vintage Vegan handmade box, so they’re already good to go for gifting. I can guarantee that you will be stopped and asked where you got it when you wear one of their pieces- I have yet to go a day wearing mine without it being commented on. 

For handcrafted gift tags and cards I am also a fan of Scrapbook Heaven
who will make custom items for you. Nothing is as cool as having an idea or concept and seeing it come to life for you- you’re not going to get that from Hallmark!

Creative Expressions
is a seller who creates knitted and beaded pieces, like this tatted and beaded flower. 

I love it’s versatility- I’ve turned it into a hair piece and a brooch, and now that the weather is cold, I pin it across a shawl or a cardigan to hold it shut while flung about my shoulders. I always get asked if I made it to which I have to say “I wish!” and I’ve had other crafty folk jump on my idea of using it as a sweater clasp.

I have been somewhat obsessed with hair decoration lately, and so I was super happy to receive an adorable beaded hair flower from TattieTats
Their motto is
“Dress up your look with a signature accessory made from repurposed materials. Good for the Earth and good for your style, TattieTats designs jewelry and accessories for the fashion forward woman who seeks to reduce her ecological footprint by purchasing affordable, sustainable goods.”
With the promo code NEW20 you get 20% off!

Once again, this shows how the handmade universe allows you to shine as a one of a kind flower, reaping the compliments and envy in your wake. 

Another great line of adorable hair goodies come from Whatshername,
with my favorite being the pinwheel pieces on hair pins and ponytail bands. These are INSANELY cheap and you can also request custom designs.  By cheap, I mean you can get a set of silk hair pin flowers for TWENTY CENTS.

I’m always a sucker for one of a kind, handcrafted jewelry, and The Rockandy Shoppe
has some lovely pieces.  I love the use of bright colors! I think it’s great when jewelry designers aren’t afraid of candy colored pieces. 

I’m also nuts about Flying Dragon Studios
with their handcrafted freshwater pearl pieces that are incredibly affordable. 
Again, I love the splash of pink!

Tracy's Home Canned Goods & Old Fashioned Edibles
Homemade rock candy in Orange, Grapefruit & Creme de Menthe
is SOOOOOO yummy! It's a really generous sized amount, and these taste so much better than any rock candy I've had before. The flavors are really strong, unlike most rock candy I've had which pretty much just tasted like sugar. I especially like the orange flavor, because it's a true orange with a tang.  One of my favorite uses for these is to drop a few pieces into a cup of tea or coffee for a flavored sweetener. At her site is not just the candy but also actual honest to goodness canned goods, including a meat sampler and homemade pickles!

 Beautiful Twists
lip Conditioner Balm in 'Bunny Burp' (carrot cake) is a really soft, moisturizing lip balm with a nice yet subtle scent and flavor. Their site has TONS of cool stuff, like Evil Waitress coffee scented room spray and astrological themed vegan lip conditioners.  I think my favorite part of her products is the crazy cute packaging!

1 comment:

Pennie said...

Awesome Blog Post as Always! And, OMG, I just want to eat the sugar scrub and the body balm! They look so Amazingly Yummy!! :)~
I also love their colors, makes me get that happy feel all over! :)

Many Smiles, Pennie