Choosing the right products and approach to care for our skin with confidence, becomes much less confusing when we know what our skin needs to be healthy.

For instance, when we know that our skin must be slightly acidic to perform optimally, and how easy it is to damage this barrier, we’re better able to make informed choices on how to support one of the foundations of skin health; a fully intact, optimally functioning Acid Mantle - and why we must strive not to compromise it from cradle to grave!

KNOWLEDGE:

Making informed choices is possible when we know what our skin needs to be strong and resilient.


INGREDIENTS + PROCESS

why, how, what I use to create your soap and skincare

Learn all about my ingredients, Why Fresh Ingredients are Superior, What is “Wildcrafting”, My Formulating Process, Preservative Free Skincare, and more LEARN MORE


 

You’ll find detailed, step by step instructions on how to use my creations, as well as tips and tricks for getting the best results. I need to add more to this list but this is a good start!

Reach out to me anytime for clarification or recommendations. It can be daunting when making the switch to natural skin care and incorporating nourishing skin care traditions into your routine. I can help simplify things for you and help get you get started on this journey. I’ll work with you one on one to personalized your routine and check in with you to see how you’re going.

 

Nourishing Skin Care Traditions + modern science

Nourishing skin care traditions from all over the globe can be adopted, customized and integrated into our routines to support happy, resilient skin, better able to withstand the ravages of time and environmental impacts.

Discovering these traditions and beauty secrets, and how to incorporated them into your day to day life is a true journey of discovery which I hope will inspire and delight you.

They offer effective solutions based on natural ingredients which can create space for skin to heal from injury, allowing the opportunity to return to optimal functioning.

Of course, there are plenty of practices from the past which were extremely dangerous and plenty of DIY suggestions today which are potentially damaging and dangerous. Myth busting is vital in our world today where information is distorted and misinterpreted, and people are not taught in schools about human skin functions, let alone physiology and nutrition. We have to sort it all out ourselves. Confused yet?

Today we live in an age of scientific discovery and innovations which continue to improved the human condition.

Take affordable, synthetic detergents, what we call “soap” today, as the perfect example. In the US, when these became widely available after WW1 infectious disease rates began to plummet. Ask just about anyone, and they’ll attribute the decline in death rates, and the perceived increase in lifespans, to the newly invented antibiotics. But some researchers question this. Regardless of which came first, soap or antibiotics, the lives of millions of people were improved with things created in a lab.

Synthetic, chemical preservatives are another example - we need them to ensure food and cosmetics are fresh. But until recently only harsh options were available. With pressure from consumers, safe, skin nourishing, plant base, biodegradable mild preservatives are now available. Learning what requires a preservative and what doesn’t is pretty easy.


 

The History of Soap and Bathing: In our quest to reconcile our modern lifestyles and the needs of our skin this knowledge is invaluable when making informed choices; today our habits and routines are so out of sync with the functioning of our skin that it is no wonder we are having issues! I can not stress enough why this information is so important.

Skin Function and Skin Health: Optimal Skin Function in the Modern Era. Can you get your head around the fact that the thing that protects us from the big, wide world is about 1/3 the thickness of one thin dime. That's it! That's all that stands between you and the vast reaches of space. This tiny barrier is a miracle of nature which can be easily damaged. Our bathing habits and choice of cleaning products in the modern 1st world is totally out of sync with the homeostasis of our skin, and our evolutionary biology.

Preserving the Skin’s microbiome: Our skin is literally teeming with a vast universe of microbial life that scientists are just beginning to understand!  The benefits of a healthy skin biome include preventing pathogenic organisms from colonizing the skin surface, either by competing for nutrients, secreting chemicals against them, or stimulating the skin's immune system.  Finding ways to nourish, maintain and replenish a healthy biome by supporting the host of microbes that abound on our skin will not only revolutionize the way we live, it may positively impact our overall health. 

Tap Water Today and Skin Health: Awareness of the impacts of tap water is growing. The water in our homes is not what it was 50 years ago. Learn why we need to tune into this modern issue, how it can be at the root of many skin problems, and/or making them worse (dry skin, acne, rosacea, eczema) I offer some simple solutions and tips on how to counteract impacts of dissolved minerals, alkaline pH and chlorine on skin health.

Wildcrafted + Fresh + Medicinal Plants: One of the foundations of Nourishing Skin Care Traditions is the use of herbs, carefully collected and prepared to help heal and support our skin - there is powerful medicine in the wild world we can employ to help solve acute and chronic skin issues and support healthy aging.

 

No discussion of skin health is complete without talking about nutrition and diet. This is a very touchy subject which has become increasingly polarized and politicized. As children, we are not taught what our nutritional needs are - and the consequences are as serious as it gets.

Optimal Nutrition: In order for the skin organ to develop properly as children, to heal from injury quickly, and remain strong and resilient into old age we must understand our incredibly complex, diverse nutritional needs. We are not taught this in schools today - understanding our vast nutritional needs is beyond confusing and the amount of misinformation grows exponentially. Without traditions and taboo food ways to guide us, like our ancestors did, we must discover it for ourselves. If we miss the mark, we suffer in so many ways.

Nourishing Diets: I do not believe for one second that until the modern era life for most people, everywhere, was brutish and short. Does it not stand to reason, that as humans, we would not be here today if at least some populations had not only survived but thrived in often hostile environments! Humans must learn every aspect of survival! We have no instincts to rely on. Adopting the nourishing food ways of thriving populations of people from the past can help us navigate this confusing landscape. Populations all over the world accumulated thousands of generations of encoded knowledge in their native food ways, traditions and taboos and faithfully handed it down over the ages. This information is desperately need today! The obscure work of Dr. Weston Price is of particular interest today, detailed in his seminal work “Nutrition and Physical Degeneration” written in 1939. His studies of healthy, long-lived, isolated indigenous people and their traditional diets is invaluable and not repeatable; those people no longer exist. His contributions to the nutritional sciences earned him the title of Nutrition Pioneer, but his work is not widely appreciated today.


ROUTINES & HABITS: CLEANSING, EXFOLIATING, CONDITIONING


Many people come to my site seeking advice on how to cleanse with oils or make are not happy with the results there are getting. Before getting started with OCM it is important to understand the chemistry of how oils clean the skin, which oils might be a good choice for YOU, which method is best suited to YOUR skin condition, and more.

  • Who usually gets the best results with OCM and who doesn’t.

  • How to get started.: choosing oils for your skin type

  • Tweaking your current routine for better results.

  • Detailed step by step instructions: There is no one right way to cleanse with oils. Here I describe my approach to oil cleansing:

    • Oil Cleansing for dry or Mature Skin

    • Oil Cleansing for Oily and Acne Prone skin

    • Oil Cleansing for Other Inflammatory Skin Issues and Atopic Dermatitis: rosacea & eczema.


How and why to wash your face with honey - yes, honey! (coming soon)

The long list of its benefits for all skin types is really impressive. Honey is 100% water soluble - dissolving instantly in water - so if you’re expecting a sticky mess, your in for a real surprise.


Old Fashion Real Soap and Cleansers

Why carefully crafted, “super-fatted” 100% Old Fashion Oil Soaps (made with modern techniques) for bathing a foundation of skin health from cradle to grave. but slightly acidic botanical cleansers are the better choice for our faces.


ROUTINES & HABITS: TONING & CONDITIONING


Facial and Body Oils: Choosing the right seed butters & oils to condition and nourish your skin can help you achieve the results you desire, or cause problems. Determining which oils to use can mean the difference between plump, happy skin, or something else.

Restorative Mineral Soaks - Why the ancient practice (and doing it correctly!) of regular soaking in mineral rich waters is so important for skin health. Learn why making bath time a regular habit is a vital step in your routine for people of all ages.

Re-Acidifying Theraputic Soaks: (coming soon)

Honey & Herb Masks! Discover this almost magical ancient beauty secret once reserved for royalty and elite. Learn why you probably want to ditch those clay masks. (coming soon)

Don’t skip the toner - but choose yours very, very carefully! Learn why toning your facial skin is a vital step in our routines. Choosing the right one is vital for skin health - most commercial toners are a hidden source of drying alcohols - Learn about the many benefits of pure, steam distilled Hydrosol Waters to condition and nourish all skin types at any age and why they are THE best choice for a toner.


COMMON QUESTIONS & SKIN CARE CHALLENGES


“Are you using Coconut as a Moisturizer?”

Why is the use of coconut oil a problem for so many people? In your quest for a more natural approach to skin care you might have ditched synthetic chemical laden lotions and moisturizers for just pure coconut oil alone. If you are not getting the results you had hoped for, or your skin condition is actually getting worse - I encourage you to read my this popular blog post. There are thousands of seed oils and butters to choose from; used alone, coconut oil might not be the best choice for you, and in fact, it’s not the best choice for many. I receive more inquiries regarding problem associated with the use of coconut oil as a stand alone “moisturizer” then you would think.

Skin Issues in the Modern Era: Addressing Acute & Chronic Dry Skin Issues”

“Dry skin” is the the most commonly identified skin care challenge of children and adults of all ages. Learn why “dry skin” is the first sign of stressed skin and an impaired acid mantle. Learn why addressing the underlying cause is so important for kids and adults and how skin in a state of “dis-ease” can not perform optimally, making it vulnerable to long term damage and premature aging.

Busting common skin care myths: Are Seed Oils and Butters Moisturizing?

Hint: NO they AREN’T! They condition the skin so it can be healthy and strong, keeping it supple and flexible so it can RETAIN moisture. When we say moisture we are really saying “water” - oils contain ZERO moisture. But we can use them to create a light moisturizing effect, when we add moisture to the skin first.

Inflammatory Skin Issues: (coming soon)

Factors in Acne

Atopic Dermatitis: a catchall category which includes Eczema & Rosacea - 2 of the most common skin issues today.

Dry Skin Problems and Healthy Aging

The number one skin care challenge is dry skin, especially as we age. Is your dry skin chronic or acute - learn how to tell the difference, what might be causing it, and what is best suited to help resolve it. Hint: The first sign of an impaired moisture barrier is dry skin. Addressing the underlying cause is an important step to maintaining strong resilient skin as we age. Left unchecked, dry skin can lead to more serious conditions and premature aging.


INTERNAL STRESS AND SKIN ISSUES: My journey into natural products began, as things like this often do, with a health crisis...

In the summer of 2005, the once mild itchy skin on my arms was becoming unbearable - I was scratching all the time, I couldn’t stop. Waking up, night after night, bleeding from wounds I was creating in my sleep from scratching. I was miserable, and frightened it wouldn’t ever end. I’d already tossed every last cleaning and personal product in the entire household and began making my own laundry detergents, cleaning supplies, soaps, lotions and salves. I was delving deeply into cosmetic chemistry, chemicals in skincare & soap, and was continuing my education into wild food and medicinal herbs I could gather locally to use internally and topically.

The dermatologist I saw prescribed strong cortisone cream for my itch - I refused. Knowing in my heart that I could get to the bottom of it if I just keep researching.

Finally I did! I was suffering from nerve damage in my neck caused by a car crash earlier in my adult life. The condition is called Brachial Radial Pruritus - it wasn’t a skin issue at all - it was nerve pain manifesting as an itch up and down my arms! With chiropractic work the condition improved immediately and the wounds began to heal. Over the next 6 months the itch resolved almost completely with occasional minor setbacks - Today, I have been itch free for over 5 years. But it does go to show - internal stress can manifest in skin issues.

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