Coffee of the Month: Old Chicago Coffee Co. No. 42 Original

"This medium roasted coffee maintains its sweet taste as it cools, so it's perfect hot or cold. Offers rich reserve of chocolate and tangerines with complex sweetness and sharp acidity. Many also love the buttery flavored body with the gentle aftertaste. Grown at high elevations of 4,500 feet in
the San Marcos region of Costa Rica's Tarrazu growing region, this is Old Chicago's most popular coffee and their original, the very first ever selected for the Old Chicago Coffee brand. This coffee offers a delightful aroma. It's roasted to create a smooth body of coffee with a minor hint of bold. The bean is softer and offers a hint more fragrance, that scent we all love in the morning. It's truly a one of a kind specialty coffee, roasted only with AAA beans."

We really enjoyed this coffee and think you will too! We love that there are no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Old Chicago Coffee is a roasting company that sells coffee in bean and ground form to coffee shops, restaurants and grocery stores. 
No. 42 is a single origin coffee. It came from trial and error roasting where the 42 was their 42nd trial roast for Old Chicago Coffee's original. 
We really like how rich, bold and full of flavor this coffee has. 
You can view recipes by clicking here.

Old Chicago Coffee Company offers coffee from Latin American origins including Costa Rican, Brazilian, Colombian and Bolivian. Features mezzo roast, sunrise and blackened coffee beans.


Glitter, Glitz & Glam: Mia Beauty’s Holiday Hair Guide

"This holiday season, adorn not only the tree, but your hair with accessories from Mia Beauty. From glitter to sparkles to metallics, Mia Beauty’s accessories will add some festive shimmer and shine to any holiday hair style."

Glitter Tony Ties®
Sleek, functional and great for a quick, crease-free ponytail. These no-tug hair ties are comfortable in your hair and can also be fashionably worn as a bracelet. Even your pony will be in the holiday spirit with these glittery seasonal colors.
$6.00|set of 3 / Available at ULTA and online via www.miabeauty.com

Metal Tony Pony®
Available in silver, gold and gunmental, these easy-to-use, versatile ponytailers look great in low, mid or high ponytails. Simply tie back into a ponytail and clasp the Tony Pony® around the hair tie for a chic holiday style.
$8.00/Available at Harmon/Bed Bath Beyond and online via www.miabeauty.com

Metal Tony Pony®
Available in silver, gold and gunmental, these easy-to-use, versatile ponytailers look great in low, mid or high ponytails. Simply tie back into a ponytail and clasp the Tony Pony® around the hair tie for a chic holiday style.
$8.00 / Available at Harmon/Bed Bath Beyond and online via www.miabeauty.com

Go bold and bright with many strands or subtle and sparkly with only a few, the Clip-n-Crystals® are reusable and will not damage hair. TheClip-n-Crystals® feature a snap clip for easy installation and removal and can be cut down for shorter hair.
$10 / Available at Harmon/Bed Bath Beyond, CVS and online via www.miabeauty.com

Hair Stickers®
Give any updo some extra pizazz with the Hair Stickers. Simply toss hair up into a sophisticated chignon or messy bun, peel and stick the hair ornaments for a pretty summer look. The non-adhesive stickers are reusable for multiple wears.
$10|4 Mini Pack|2 Small Pack|1 Large Pack / Available online via www.miabeauty.com 

Bling String®
Tinsel is no longer reserved for the tree. For some serious hair sparkle, just tie or clip in the easy-to-use hair extensions for a colorful, shimmery effect. Hair can be blow dried, curled and straightened and the Bling String® can last for weeks!
$10 / Available at CVS Pharmacies and online via www.miabeauty.com

These products make fantastic accessories for the holidays, and great stocking stuffers for loved ones! We know we will be using the Glitter Tony Ties and love the variety of colors. The sparkle adds such a nice touch to our holiday outfits while being sleek, functional and great for a quick ponytail. No-tug hair ties are so much better for your hair and will not leave a crease! They even look cute on your wrists when they are not being used.


PB Fit

PB Fit is a powdered peanut butter product that has been extremely successful. This product is a de-fatted peanut butter in powder form that is really easy to use. All you have to do is mix it with water to make a peanut butter spread that is more than 75% less fat, and 1/3 of the calories of traditional peanut butter. 

We really like this product ! It is close to the taste and texture of traditional peanut butter and is much healthier. Plus, because you are mixing the product yourself, you can control the consistency and texture based on your personal preference. 
For a sandwich, you may want it thicker and use less water. For oatmeal, you may want it more watery. 
PB fit has a nice balance: just a hint of sweetness and saltiness. It is also really easy to add to smoothies for added flavor and protein. The uses for PB fit are endless! You can also add it to ice cream, pancakes, and more without the extra calories of regular peanut butter. 
This product also has a long shelf life, which makes it great for a snack when you haven't gone to the grocery, or even outdoor adventures. It's really easy to carry on camping trips and can be stored in plastic zip lock bags. Just add water to it and knead the bag until the peanut butter is your desired consistency. Then, cut a corner of the bag and squeeze the PB fit onto whatever food item you want it with. 
In addition to the PB fit Peanut Butter Powder, this product also comes in another flavor : Chocolate Peanut Butter Powder
We love the twist on the original peanut butter flavor! This also has made its way into our food pantries. 

Better Body Foods has a really nice variety of recipes on their website that incorporates PB Fit into the dish.
One of our favorites is their Shrimp PB Fit Pad Thai.  


1 14-oz. package rice noodles
2 tbsp. BBF Coconut Oil
2 tsp. garlic, minced
1 lb. whole shrimp, tofu or meat of your choice
2 cups bean sprouts
1 cup carrots, shredded
1 bell pepper, julienned
3 scallions, chopped
¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
¼ cup roasted peanuts, chopped
¼ cup BBF Agave
¼ cup rice vinegar, unsweetened
3 tbsp. PB Fit
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tbsp. chili sauce
1 ½ tbsp. fresh lime juice


Cook noodles according to package (generally, soak in warm water for 40 minutes).
In a small bowl, whisk together sauce ingredients. Set aside.
Heat coconut oil on high in a wok or large skillet. Add garlic and sauté for 15 seconds. Add meat or tofu and cook thoroughly. Add noodles and sauce. Stir fry for about 5 minutes, or until noodles turn transparent. Add sprouts, carrots, pepper and scallions and cook for 1-2 more minutes.
Garnish with cilantro and peanuts.
This recipe is absolutely delicious and a must-try! You can also find more recipes here
We also found an article called 10 Amazing Peanut Facts that we didn't know. Did you know that Arachibutyrophobia is the fear of getting  peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth!? 

We highly recommend these two products. We love them and think you will too! 


NEW Lipstick from Gerard Cosmetics

"Gimme some lip! Gerard Cosmetics is pleased to announce the launch of their new lipstick collection which includes six shades: Cherry Cordial1995Nude, Fire Engine, All Dolled Up and Tequila Sunrise. The matte formulation glides on smooth for a long-lasting wear."

We love these new shades for the holidays and New Years! 

Cherry Cordial
Sinfully sweet with a dark and enchanting allure, Cherry Cordial is vampy and rich with a berry undertone.

Get inspired by the neutral nudes of the 90’s. Inspired by the grunge revival and the beauty trends of an unforgettable decade, this iconic creation is a matte but creamy lip color that is a timeless expression of glam.

Buttery, full coverage and a stunning neutral hue that can be mixed with any lip color to create the perfect lip color.

Fire Engine
Red Hot lips are classic and timeless. Fire Engine is a take on the glamorous Hollywood lipstick that really turns up the heat.

All Dolled Up
Feminine and flirtatious, this pretty in pink lipstick is a pigmented and playful. No doll face is complete without this stunning staple.

Tequila Sunrise
A fresh and fun peachy Coral lipstick that is ultra pigmented and long-wearing. A soft matte formula that will keep the party going all night long.

These shades of lipsticks make a wonderful collection! They come in a variety of shades that will suit many skin tones, and many occasions. The luxurious golden packaging is noteworthy, and the lipsticks are sleek and simple. 
Just to note: Gerard Cosmetics is the same company as Whitening Lightening. While Whitening Lightning is geared more towards teeth whitening, Gerard Cosmetics focuses solely on cosmetics.
The shades are gorgeous and pigmented. They have a matte feeling but do not dry out your lips like other lipsticks. 1995 and Cherry Cordial have a really nice sultry feel great for the fall. The Nude lipstick makes a very nice classic staple, along with Fire Engine, which is also a wonderful statement shade. We love all these shades and hope there will be more additions to the line! 

These products are $19 each via www.gerardcosmetics.com


Citrus Clear

Citrus Clear is a natural and holistic treatment for acne, sensitive skin and all skin types. They offer natural acne products which include face washmoisturizer, and acne treatments designed to meet the needs of teenagers and adults looking to remove acne.
Citrus clear is a natural skin care line that uses citrus juices, extracts, tinctures and peels in their acne products. They have two lines: The Control Acne line, and The Sensitive Skin line.
Citrus Clear never uses:

  • Petrochemicals
  • Phthalates
  • Parabens
  • Sulfates
  • Mineral oils
  • Silicone
  • Synthetic fragrance 
  • Color dyes

In addition, Citrus Clear is/has:

  • FDA Registered
  • Good Manufacturing Process (GMP) certified
  • No Animal Testing
  • Quality Control Checkpoints
  • Shelf Life Testing
  • Antimicrobial Testing
  • Sustainable Practices & Materials

Citrus Clear's Sensitive Skin Facial Kit ($49) is for people with normal, oily, combination, or problematic skin. It was designed to be calming and soothing, while keeping oil away. The ingredients in this set is meant to make skin more clear and promote cell regeneration while preventing sensitivity. 
For this kit, use the cleanser to remove dirt and oil. After rinsing, dry your face and use the moisturizer. 
All of the Citrus Care Face Product comes in glass bottles, which are great to keep them from knocking over on the counter. 
The Gentle Cleanser is great for sensitive skin. It has a lovely scent, which will remind you of a hot summer day on the beach. This cleanser effectively removes oil and dirt without overly drying the skin. Comes in a convenient pump dispenser. 
We like how the Sensitive Moisturizer makes skin feel soft and creamy, without being oily. 

Citrus Clear has a Pore & Blackhead Extracting Mask ( $24.99) that contains pure plant ingredients, herbs, and two types of natural earth clays. This come together to penetrate into pores and extract dirt and blackheads. 
This can be applied to dry or damp skin. The product should remain on skin 4-8 minutes, or until mask dries. 
This product is gentle enough for sensitive skin. This mask does a wonderful job clearing blemishes while controlling oil and shine. It does not dry out your skin and is great for spot treatments too. 

We really enjoy this line and appreciate how the brand is promoting the importance of products that are naturally based, eco-friendly, and sustainable. 


Winter Skincare Tips from Jan Marini

Jan Marini, President and CEO of Jan Marini Skin Research, is a pioneer in the professional skincare arena. She has more than three decades of experience researching and developing new and innovative skincare technologies.  Below are her top beauty tips to help keep skin protected and youthful during the winter season.  

Tip #1: Dry Lips
One of the most common complaints relating to harsh winter weather is dry chapped lips.  Not only are dry lips uncomfortable, but they can interfere with lipstick application and certainly look unsightly. 

Here’s a few tips guaranteed to deliver smooth, hydrated luscious looking lips:
1. After removing your lipstick, use a wet (wrung out) washcloth to rigorously “buff” the lip area. This provides just the right amount of exfoliation and removes dead dry skin, leaving behind a smooth surface.
2. Rub everything you use on your face over your lips – and be generous. This means moisturizers, retinol, etc.
3. Finish with a sealant. Use something that is thick and emollient. This idea is to leave behind a barrier that sits on your lips throughout the night and prevents moisture from escaping. Some great examples are plain old Vaseline, Elizabeth Arden 8-hour cream, or Janet Sartin Superfatted Cream.
4. In the AM, make certain you again massage your facial products onto your lip and finish with sunscreen.

Tip #2: Dull Winter Skin
Whether your skin is dry or oily, colder winter weather can make any complexion look duller and less vibrant.  While increased moisture helps to provide a protective barrier in harsh temperatures, moisturizers don’t address skin that seems sluggish and looks like it’s half hidden behind a dull layer of skin. Even in winter months, exfoliation is a must for keeping facial skin looking polished and luminous with that perfect “airbrushed” look. Some resurfacing agents can have an anti-inflammatory effect and can also boost the skin’s ability to manufacture substances that retain water.  Combination of acids are perfect for this task.  Plus these same agents can assist in keeping skin blemish-free as well as lessening the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 

Tip #3: Jan’s #1 Anti-Aging Tip
What’s my #1 anti-aging tip? You’ve heard it before, but I can’t stress it enough: Sunscreen! While short wave length UVB rays are weaker in the winter months, not so with UVS. The long UVS wavelengths are the same intensity all year long, even when it is cloudy, raining, or snowing. These rays penetrate your skin like an invisible X-ray, destroying collagen and elastin, and damaging the foundation of your firm youthful-looking skin. This damage may not show up for some time, but you can be certain that the groundwork has been imprinted into your DNA and it will manifest itself in unsightly lines and wrinkles, brown spots, coarse texture and sagging contours. Undisputed research confirms that faithful daily sunscreen users will be rewarded with softer, smoother, more youthful skin than their counterparts.

Tip #4: Ragged Dry Cuticles
Cold winter weather not only dries facial skin but also has the potential to ravage already dry cuticles.

Here’s a tip that’s guaranteed to remove dead, ugly cuticles without cutting and leave behind soft, smooth skin around the nail area. This is accomplished via a technology that dissolves and dislodges dead, dry skin without harming normal skin.
1. Clean hands with a proteolytic enzyme cleanser (e.g., Clean Zyme Enzyme Cleanser by JMSR).
2. Apply a proteolytic enzyme mask over cuticle area (e.g., Skin Zyme Enzyme Mask by JMSR) or over entire hand. Leave on for 10-20 minutes.
3. Remove with Clean Zyme and rinse. Towel-dry and apply an emollient hand cream.

Tip #5: Pale Winter Skin
Here's the dilemma: You feel like your facial skin looks pasty white and your sunless tanner looks a little overdone for mid-winter.

So how do you achieve that flawless, barely sun-kissed flattering glow? Put a dollop of your favorite moisturizer in your hand and add a pea to a dime-size amount of sunless tanner and mix them together. Then apply to entire face just like you would apply moisturizer. It's mistake-proof and delivers a subtle glow.  You can incorporate this into your daily routine to maintain the perfect reflective hue.

We couldn't agree more with Jan Marini's tips for Winter Skincare! Her products have also been featured in magazines like Allure and Marie Claire. Be sure to check out the official website at: 


Cream vs. Oil

With face oils gaining popularity, there has been a great debate over oils vs. creams. No matter you’re preference, Mad Hippie’s all-natural Face Cream and Antioxidant Facial Oil are full of natural antioxidants and actives essentials that work hand in hand to liberate the skin from signs of aging.

Formulated with 18 actives including argan oil, goji and camu camu, theMad Hippie Antioxidant Facial Oil is a free radical fighting, ultra-hydrating oil. The active essentials and natural antioxidants work hand in hand to liberate the skin from signs of aging and protect against photoaging.

Actives:  Argan Oil, Pomegranate Seed Oil, Sunflower Seed Oil, Cranberry Fruit Extract, Pomegranate Extract, Blueberry Extract, Strawberry Fruit Extract, Kiwi Extract, Watermelon Fruit Extract, Grape Seed Extract, Raspberry Extract, Camu Camu Fruit Extract, Acai Fruit Extract, Goji Extract, Sea Buckhorn Berry Extract, Hemp Seed Extract, Broccoli Extract, Vitamin E

This new product smells so enticing that you want to use it. This oil is a great addition to our skincare routine. This product does not make your face oily, but rather, adds a balancing effect on your skin. It adds a nice glowing effect and sinks in quickly, not leaving any residue on your face. This is a nice product that is effective and affordable and will make a wonderful staple in your skincare routine. 
Mad Hippie Face Cream ($25.99)
Formulated with 12 actives including peptides, acai, argan oil and resveratrol, the Mad Hippie Face Cream reduces the appearance of wrinkles and creates smooth, healthy skin. The peptides and actives kick-start collagen production while Mother Nature’s best antioxidants neutralize aging free radicals.

Actives: Niacinamide, Matrixyl 3000, Argan Oil, Syn-Tacks, Pomegranate Seed Oil, Green Tea Extract, Grape Seed Extract, Acai Berry Extract, Resveratrol, Vitamin E Acetate, Coenzyme Co Q10, Tocotrienol 40

This is a great non-greasy, light moisturizer. It smells nice, applies and absorbs easily, and is very light. It is full of peptides, antioxidants and other desirable ingredients. There is no animal testing with this product and it uses an airless pump dispenser to avoid contamination. The packaging is simple, safe, and recyclable, keeping with the company's "natural" philosophy. We recommend Mad Hippie Face Cream. 

Mad Hippie products are available at select Whole Foods stores and online via www.madhippie.com.


Balance & Restore with Toners for Every Concern

"Versatile, nourishing and known to detox, toners remove the residue that soaps often leave behind, while helping to shrink pores, sealing in skin’s natural oils. The result- an even, balanced complexion.

No matter your skincare concern, emerginC offers toners that work to condition and calm the skin, while maintaining a healthy pH balance."

Each $30-31

For Oily/Acne Prone Skin: Deglazing Toner
For Dry Skin: Pomegranate Toner
For Sensitive Skin: Lavender Toner
For All Skin Types: Peach Toner

We have been fortunate to be able to try the Pomegranate Toner and Lavendar Toner and love them both! Toner is such an essential part of the skincare routine that people often miss. Toner removes oil and traces of dirt and grime. The are especially helpful for those with oily or acne-prone skin, and those who want an extra cleansing after wearing make up or other heavy skin products like sunscreen. Is that all?
Toner is also great for many other reasons. 
Toner can shrink pores, give your skin pH balance, add layers of protection, moisturizes, refreshes, and can prevent ingrown hairs. 

We love lavender. It is a beautiful plant with a refreshing scent. Plus, its health benefits are never-ending. It is a natural antiseptic, skin soother, calms senses... 
The Lavender Toner from emerginC is a light and refreshing product that is great for sensitive skin. In this product, there is also witch hazel, green tea, and chamomile.
While many toners dry out the skin (due to the alcohol content), this one leaves your skin feeling calm and nourished. It calms blemishes, while soothing and conditioning your skin. We love the light lavender scent of this product. It will help you feeling relaxed and ready for bed!

EmerginC pomegranate toner exfoliates your skin with malic and glycolic acids while preventing free-radical damage with pomegranate and green tea. It is a nice toner that smells nice, with a subtle fruity scent. It picks up anything left on your face after cleansing, and helps skin clear up and look less oily. It does not sting and leaves your face feeling soft and smooth.

To find these products, be sure to check out emerginC!