A Bride's Guide to Looking and Feeling Her Most Beautiful

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Wedding season is gearing up, and brides everywhere have but one thing on their minds: looking and feeling good on one of the most special days of their lives.

Actually, that's a huge lie. Brides have 8,659 other things on their minds, from the weather forecast, to the bridal party outfits, to the playlist you’ll be moving to. Every detail of the wedding runs through the bride's mind at one moment or another, so it's really a wonder that she has any time to take care of herself!

To help take the pressure off of seriously overwhelmed brides, I've pared down my favorite pre-wedding beauty pointers (all available in detail to brides who take part in a Beauty Is Wellness coaching program) for looking and feeling your absolute best on your wedding day—or at any big event. These tips are the foundation of glowing skin, an energetic body, your healthiest weight, and minimal stress as your wedding day approaches.

Here's the Eat Pretty approach to looking and feeling your best as you walk down the aisle:

A moment from My 2011 Wedding

A moment from My 2011 Wedding

1. See sugar for what it is. On your special day, no doubt you're going to celebrate with wedding cake, a plate of petit fours, a slice of homemade pie, or your favorite celebratory sweet. But in the weeks and months before your wedding, sugary foods are tied with stress as the #1 saboteur for brides. Refined sugar contributes to unwanted pounds, makes you more prone to acne, fine lines, dryness, and uneven skin tone, plus it takes you on a hormonal roller-coaster (as if you weren't experiencing enough drama as you plan your perfect wedding day!). If your wedding day goals include clearer skin or shedding extra pounds, cut out sugar as much as you can (try skipping it completely for 10 to 14 days to reset your cravings, if you have them), and find some healthier ways to deal with stress than sweet treats— think dinner with a friend, meditation, sweating in a sauna, or a long soak at the end of the day.

2. Make friends with ferments. Okay, not right before you say your vows, but in the weeks and months before your big day! Sauerkraut—along with other fermented foods like kefir, brined pickles, kimchi, and miso— contains beneficial probiotic bacteria that help amp up the digestion and absorption of beauty nutrients that happens in your gut after you eat. There are several times more probiotic bacteria in fermented foods than there are in store-bought capsules, so try eating your way to better gut health with a few forkfuls of fermented foods each day. Cultivate a healthy population of bacteria and you'll not only boost your immunity and moods and help out your skin, hair and nails, you'll stop bloating and gas (which is a great thing to avoid on your wedding day) before they start.

3. To slim down, eat. Eating to reach your healthiest weight can sounds counterintuitive, but trust me— it works. Starving or cutting too many calories slows your metabolism and dries up the stream of beauty nutrients that your skin, hair and nails need to glow—and grow. Forget dry salads, rice cakes and meal replacement bars; build your diet around beautifying proteins (think wild-caught salmon, lentils, hemp, raw nuts, sardines, pastured eggs, quinoa, etc.), healthy fats (avocados, raw nuts, coconut oil), and an abundance of fresh, seasonal veggies— and eat a combination of the 3 at each meal for your best blood sugar balance. While you’re at it, aim to eat less of the sugars, gluten-containing grains, dairy, and alcohol that can cause inflammation.

4. Don't fall prey to stress sabotage.  Brides, you know that stress is an inevitable part of wedding planning, so create a plan to shut it down before it takes a toll on your beauty and health. Stress, unchecked, can cause breakouts, weight gain and lackluster skin before your big day, not to mention make the entire experience a lot less joyful. Pick a stress-busting activity that makes you happy—it might be yoga, jogging, meditation, or taking a walk in nature—and practice it regularly. I also love supplements and teas like magnesium, lemon balm, lavender, and even CBD to support calm and relaxation.

5. Plan what you'll eat in the week leading up to your big day. You know that when you get busy, beauty nutrition goes out the window. So don't leave your wedding-week meals to chance. Take control of your meals and plan a grocery list of foods that will make your skin glow, rev up your energy and help you handle stress. Go for an anti-inflammatory menu filled with the foods mentioned in number 3, above. When your wedding day arrives, you'll be looking and feeling gorgeous—and you'll feel great about splurging on all of your favorite indulgences during your celebration.

6. Know that you're going to glow on your wedding day like no other day before! Whether or not science can quantify the radiant glow you get from being truly joyous and in love, it's there. Not only will you see it, but so will your partner, and everyone else in the room. Remember that you are gorgeous, and the happiness of this occasion will only amplify your glow beyond what you can imagine!

Bonus: if you're heading to a sun-filled honeymoon destination, you can help prevent UV damage by filling up on sun protective beauty foods that contain lycopene and beta carotene (think watermelon, red peppers, cantaloupe, tomatoes). You'll come home with memories, but leave behind the sun damage.

Tell me: what made you glow on your big day? I'd love to hear your own advice for wedding day beauty!

Would you prefer one-on-one coaching to motivate you to put these tips into action in your life? Contact Jolene to set up a free consultation to decide which Beauty Is Wellness coaching program fits your beauty and health goals.

Sunflower photo: Ivan Cabanas — Bouquet photo: Courtney Apple

Originally published July 2013/Updated April 2019

Winter Product Obsessions 2018-19: Light Edition

Have a look at these beautiful natural and organic favorites…

Once I gathered up these products from where they’d already found permanent homes in my bathroom, purse, and nightstand, I realized that they’re connected by the theme of light and glow— something I hold close throughout the cold, dark winter season. Maybe it’s a coincidence, or maybe these should be the next items you reach for if you’re craving a little extra glow in your winter routine too. Happy Solstice!

Kindred Baton d’Or, $38 (or Limited Edition 2018 Set for $45)

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Literally ‘stick of gold,’ this creamy, shimmering product leaves your skin subtly illuminated and deeply moisturized. With only 5 ingredients (mango seed oil, evening primrose oil, calendula-infused sweet almond oil, geranium oil, and mica), it feels like a pared-down, everyday essential and a special occasion item all at once. I’ve decided to make it an everyday item this winter, with the goal of restoring some of the sun-kissed bronze that has long left my skin. It works instantly to create luminosity— especially around my collarbone and décolleté (about all the skin I show this time of year!) or on cheeks and lips— and is surprisingly natural-looking and buildable. This product comes from (local to me) Delaware-based natural beauty company Kindred (maker of the most beautiful body oil ever), and you can purchase it paired with a cheerful sparkling pink La Femme candle as part of a special Limited Edition gift set. If you order, use the code JHART for 10% off.

 

The Organic Skin Co. Task Force Nine, $48

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Task Force Nine— the name alone sounds like it means business. And this cream does just that, by soothing skin and reducing inflammation while imparting a healthy glow thanks to golden-hued organic supercritical turmeric, sea buckthorn, and calendula extracts. This cream is a medium weight (it’s water-based, with rose hydrosol and aloe juice), has a soft, non-sticky dry-down, and is 78% organic and 100% natural. I am in love with its natural vanilla scent too— so calming on face and hands.

 




VitaVie Repair & Restore Elixir, $29

I’ve only had this oil for a few days and it’s already one of my winter favorites. Repair and Restore Elixir is instantly calming for my nervous system— you can credit the mix of frankincense, helichrysum, vetiver, neem, and lavender that is super grounding to the senses. I’ve been using it for a beautiful ritual: warm one pump of the oil between your palms, cup your palms over your nose and inhale slowly and deeply, then apply the oil to clean skin that you’ve just misted with a hydrosol. It soaks in well, leaves your skin dewy and your body feeling peaceful.

 

 
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The first time I pumped a drop of Light Reveal (a creamy, balm-like serum) onto my hand, I gasped. It’s completely orange, from brightly-pigmented supercritical sea buckthorn oil. But don’t fear, once you distribute it and massage it into skin, the orange hue creates a subtle warmth that becomes a natural-looking glow. The serum’s other antioxidant-packed ingredients include exotic buriti, pequi, and andiroba oils, plus caffeine from guarana that boosts blood flow to skin. Wabi Sabi Botanicals is a brand new indie beauty addition to Beauty Heroes, and you can purchase Light Reveal alone, or in a special Limited Edition Indie Beauty Spotlight discovery box from Beauty Heroes. The gilded packaging will be the prettiest thing in your beauty cabinet.

 

Axiology Soft Cream Lipstick in Reflection, $30

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I fell for this lipstick (dressed up in new packaging from Axiology) because it reminded me that sometimes the colors you think you can’t wear become your biggest wins. In the tube, Reflection is a pearlized purple, but on lips, it softens into a bright, berry-hued pink/purple with medium payoff that feels fresh, trend-setting, and joyful. As always, Axiology lipsticks are made with natural oils and pigments, are vegan and cruelty-free, and completely free of fragrance.


NOTE: If you purchase a Beauty Heroes subscription, or a product from the Beauty Heroes store, I will receive a small commission on behalf of Beauty Heroes. My honest review and experience with Beauty Heroes and the Wabi Sabi Light Reveal was in no way influenced by my affiliate status.

Spring Product Obsessions 2018

Alleluia, it finally feels like spring on the East Coast. This season is a natural cue to detox, and that includes cleaning out the products that are old or just not serving you. It could also mean experimenting with something new. Today I gathered up the natural products that are my latest springtime loves, from a very extra new deodorant to a milky serum to a travel version of a product that I’m betting you already rely on. Maybe one of these six winners will be your next healthy beauty purchase…

Vapour Aer Next Level Deodorant, $24

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Next Level Deodorant— such an amazing name. And it speaks the truth; Vapour took things to the next level when they created this product, from the formula to the delivery system to the statement-making natural scents (are you more Palo Santo Blood Orange or Lavender Myrrh?). It took the company 5 years of lab time to perfect Aer, and I have to say, while I was not in the market for a new deodorant for my own routine (still in love with my fave Meow Meow Tweet Grapefruit Baking Soda Free deo), I can’t find a single flaw here. I got my Aer Deodorant in the Beauty Heroes April Limited Edition Beauty Discovery Box, featuring Vapour. If you hurry, you can get one here (this will sell out fast), or you can always grab the product itself in the Beauty Heroes store. Switching to a natural deodorant from a conventional formula often feels daunting, but I tell you there’s never been a better time to make the switch.  Conventional anti-perspirants contain ingredients that you don't want on your skin or next to your breasts every day (aluminum and synthetic fragrances are two), and they block one of your body’s major detox pathways. Aer is a natural deodorant (read: not anti-perspirant), and it worked for me from Day 1. Now, on Day 20, it’s still working well and I have yet to experience any irritation from the “just a pinch” of baking soda in this formula. If you’re baking soda sensitive, you might actually find that you’re okay here. The cream-to-powder formula doesn't feel wet and cold under your arms after you apply (one reason I usually avoid cream deodorant sticks like this one) and you only need a tiny amount, so this stick will last you at least 2 months— likely far more. And the scent— let’s just say I never expected to have palo santo-scented pits, but I’m kind of loving it. Thank you for working so hard to hit the mark on this, Vapour!

W3ll People Bio Bronzer Cream Stick, $23.99

I was thrilled to discover this cream bronzer-in-a-stick just as the weather started to warm. The stick delivery system makes it easy to swipe anywhere, and the cream formula blends in quite well, so that the tiniest dot mimics the effect of sun on my face. I’ve found that a warmer bronzer shade like this one (mine is Natural Tan- 01) looks even more realistic on my skin than pink-toned blush. For spring/summer, I’m keeping it close at hand. W3ll People, a green beauty pioneer, has perfected its formulas, so you can’t go wrong with any of their natural makeup— this one especially. It also comes in a small pot ($11.99), in case you prefer a tinier size.

 

Coconut oil is just about everyone’s multipurpose beauty and health staple, and this eye-catching tube makes it so easy to transport. I use coconut oil regularly for oil pulling, and have always loved it for makeup removal, and recently was shocked to find that I can toss this tube in my bag without fear of leaks! It’s designed for travel, and made with Fair Trade, cold-pressed coconut oil. Each purchase also feeds one child a meal through Feeding America food banks. If you’re a coconut oil devotee and you travel a lot, you absolutely need to give this pretty tube a try.

 

Confession: I haven’t worn foundation since my wedding day, almost 7 years ago! After living with acne for almost a decade and clearing my skin with changes to my diet and lifestyle, I live in as little coverage as possible. My daily staple for sun protection and barely-there coverage is Suntegrity 5-in-1 Natural Tinted Face Sunscreen. But I got curious about Ilia’s new True Skin Serum Foundation— a mix of skincare and makeup that sounded too good to pass up. The pros at Aillea helped me match my skin to shade F1 (I thought there was no way I could be the lightest shade, but even though the formula looks extremely pale in the bottle the match is great), and I have to say that I really love this formula! It’s loaded with nourishing ingredients like baobab, rose hip, and jojoba oils, in a base of aloe and coconut, and that seems to ward off any chalky dryness. Dimethicone also helps it apply with a silky finish (a feature you don't want to compromise on for your base makeup). It’s buildable and light enough that I don’t feel like I’m wearing a heavy foundation. This one is a new staple when I want a little more coverage.

 

de Mamiel Intense Nurture Antioxidant Elixir, $135

I was introduced to this exquisite skin treatment in the April Beauty Heroes Discovery Box, which has long ago sold out, but I had to share it again here because it continues to impress me as I use it. De Mamiel’s founder and formulator, Annee de Mamiel, is an esthetician, aromatherapist, and licensed acupuncturist trained in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Her products are inspired by the needs of her clients and she truly practices slow beauty— sometimes taking years to develop, trial, and perfect her products, which work on the physical, emotional, and cellular levels. This would be beautiful in theory alone, but in practice I can tell you that my skin truly glows after using her Intense Nurture Antioxidant Elixir— a milky serum that protects from environmental damage and stimulates regeneration and repair. Using both first and second generation antioxidants (including the powerful ferulic acid and superoxide dismutase), as well as incorporating principles of vibrational beauty, this formula continues to work over time, with continued use. Though de Mamiel’s handmade products (made in the UK) may be a true skincare splurge that’s not in the budget at all times, I’m so grateful for the opportunity to use this elixir and its Beauty Heroes sidekick, Exhale Daily Hydrating Nectar. Beauty Heroes has introduced me to some amazing brands, but this one might be my most favorite new discovery!

 

CV Skinlabs Body Repair Lotion, $14.50

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I have long loved this natural lotion, and routinely recommend it to clients with eczema and sensitive skin that is healing from a number of conditions— including radiation irritation. Its combination of anti-inflammatory reishi mushroom, turmeric and bisabolol, as well as calendula and beta glucan, does wonders for compromised skin. You will see a difference in your skin’s condition after one application, and continued use heals skin (if you’re experiencing eczema or skin rashes, this lotion helps skin heal topically while you are working from the inside out to change the root cause of the skin issue). Had to share it again this spring— the season when we start to bare more skin, and of course want it to be clear and healthy.


NOTE: If you purchase a Beauty Heroes subscription, or a product from the Beauty Heroes store, I will receive a small commission on behalf of Beauty Heroes. My honest review and experience with Beauty Heroes and these Vapour and de Mamiel products was in no way influenced by my affiliate status.

The Best Essential Oils for Your Bath

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Whenever I have one of those days where stress, work, and motherhood (or all of the above) wear me out yet leave me wired, a bath is how I wipe the slate clean and prepare for restful sleep. You might call it a bathing meditation, because it has similar effects for my mind and body.

Many of my clients who have had difficulty sleeping or managing stress have found a bath to be an ideal evening self-care practice. If nighttime is the time when cravings hit, or when you find yourself staying up too late binging on TV, or even when you tend to feel restless and unable to settle into sleep, I challenge you to break that routine with a bath. A warm bath (I like mine HOT, even though I know it's dehydrating to my skin...!) detoxifies, relaxes muscles, increases circulation, restores the mind & body, and pampers you. It's an ideal time to grab a magazine, listen to a podcast, slather on a face mask— or just stare at the ceiling and breathe. And then there's the water. You can find any number of amazing bath products (see a few faves at the end of this post) to boost the benefits of your bath, but just a few drops of the right essential oil make an otherwise average soak into a tailored spa treatment. I like to change it up but always come back to some combination of lavender + jasmine + sandalwood. 

To find out which essential oils are best for the bath, I previously interviewed essential oil expert Robin Block of Wyndmere Naturals for her picks. I also added some of my own favorites to this list! Pick the ones that speak to you and follow the key instructions afterward for a rewarding beauty ritual you'll revisit time and again:

Best Essential Oils for the Bath

  • Rose: “If I had to pick only one oil, I’d probably choose rose oil,” says Block. “It’s calming but gently uplifting and it helps with anxiety or nervous tension.” Rose oil supports all skin types, so even those with dry, sensitive skin will benefit from its restorative effects.
  • Cedarwood, Sandalwood or Rosewood: Block says that any oils that come from tree bark are incredibly soothing and grounding—and I totally agree. Sandalwood in particular is prized for its fragrance, as well as its calming properties, making it a personal fave.
  • Neroli: This lovely oil, which is extracted from orange blossom flowers, calms the mind and uplifts the spirit. It makes a great addition to a wintertime bath, since, “We’re often starved for uplifting scents in the winter,” Block says. Neroli is a gentle sedative that encourages sleep and reduces anxiety. Think of this oil as the antidote to a stressful day.
  • Vetiver: Vetiver, distilled from the roots of the vetiver plant, is a humectant oil that brings moisture to dry skin and peace to your mind. “In India, vetiver is called the oil of tranquility,” says Block.
  • Lavender: Known as the quintessential oil for calm, lavender is a favorite for nighttime baths and the treatment of insomnia. Lavender also supports damaged, stressed or irritated skin, making it a wonderful choice for many of those with skin issues.
  • Roman or German Chamomile: Chamomile is known for its gentle, calming properties, making it an excellent essential oil to add to a tension-reducing bath before bed.  Add a few drops of chamomile essential oil to a chamomile tea bag and let it soak in your bath for extra benefits, Block suggests.
  • Ylang Ylang or Jasmine:  Ylang ylang and jasmine essential oils maybe stimulants that uplift your mood, but I also find them to be soothing to your body. A bath scented with these exotic oils, which are aphrodisiacs and blend especially well together, also benefits dry skin.

After filling your bath, Block recommends that you wait a few minutes for the water to reach a warm temperature, and never get into a bath that’s steaming or scalding, since it does strip natural oils from the skin. (I'm trying to do this more!). Then sprinkle a few drops of your chosen essential oil (or essential oil blend, since most oils mix well with others) into a cup of whole milk or a few tablespoons of olive oil. Add this diluted mixture to your bath water and stir to blend. Add essential oils directly to hot water and they will evaporate quickly, along with their therapeutic benefits. Or, as an antidote to sore muscles, mix a few drops of essential oils into two cups of Epsom salts and dissolve into your bath.

When choosing essential oils for your bath, look for an indication that the oils are 100% pure and therapeutic grade. Brands like Wyndmere Naturals, Young Living, doTERRA and Aura Cacia are known for the purity of their oils.

Want to add instant therapeutic benefits to bath, with a product that's ready to use? These are some of my personal favorite natural and organic bath products:

EO Botanical Bath Salt Soaks. With a range of natural scents and a choice of different types of salts (from Himalayan pink to sea salt and Epsom salt), these are a great budget-friendly bath soak option. 

Pursoma Bath Soaks. The Pursoma Hot Tub Bath (a splurge at $36) in particular helped me stop a cold in its tracks. The best part of these detoxifying bath blends is the incredibly high-quality ingredients, including wild harvested seaweeds, organic ginger powder, and pure French clay.

Dr. Hauschka Aromatherapy Bath Kit. A collection of trial sizes of Dr. Hauschka’s rosemary, spruce, sage, lemon and lavender bath oils that make your bath smell amazing and leave your skin so moisturized and happy.

What's your current favorite natural or organic bath product?

Note: This post was originally published 8/26/11 and was most recently updated June 2017.

Join Me for a Holiday Celebration at Credo Beauty!

If you'll be in NYC on Thursday, December 8th, I'd love for you to join me and makeup artist Rebecca Casciano for an evening of natural beauty for the holidays at Credo Beauty Soho! I'll be signing books as well as sharing my favorite tips for glow—now and into the new year. Info and rsvp link below!

Autumn Product Obsessions 2016

As the weather cools, I'm craving a moody lip color, a melty cleanser, a buttery-rich eye cream, and a lotion that uses botanical power to reduce season-transitioning inflammation. Ready to meet these natural and organic superstars? Here's what's in my purse and gathered in my bathroom this fall...

Goop by Juice Beauty Luminous Melting Cleanser, $90

No exaggeration- the first time I tried this rich, buttery cleansing balm, I loved its feel so much that I gave myself a spontaneous facial. By principle, I no longer use cleansers that strip my skin of moisture, but even in a lineup of creamy natural cleansers, this product sets itself apart. It's easy to get addicted the balm-like formula, as well as the routine of scooping out a little dab and feeling it melt as you massage it into your skin. I find it most satisfying to use when I'm wearing mascara, liner, and the whole nine yards, since it effortlesly breaks down makeup. The 79% organic formula includes almond, olive, jojoba, and coconut oils, plus shea and cocoa butters that cleanse by breaking down dirt and oils and ushering them away without leaving you parched. Of course, the experience isn't complete without the organic cleansing cloth that's included to help you fully rinse and gently exfoliate (you'll end with a nice layer of moisture remaining on your skin).

Bottega Organica Illuminate Eye Contour Cream, $145

(Also available in the October 2016 Beauty Heroes Discovery Box— a $35 monthly subscription)

What better way to greet colder weather than with a buttery-rich eye cream that delivers a stunning range of powerful healers and hydrators for your delicate eye area? I was thrilled to receive this Bottega Organica Illuminate Eye Contour Cream in my October Beauty Heroes Discovery box, and even more impressed with the product when I took a thorough look at its ingredient list. Bottega Organica, which creates 'farm-to-skin luxury' products, sources the majority of its certified organic ingredients (think fresh herbs, cold-pressed olive oil, and botanicals like echinacea, geranium, and the exotic prawn sage) from an organic farm in Italy and an organic farm in Upstate New York. The result is an eye cream that is a dream to apply, and leaves your eye area calmer, brighter, and more hydrated, naturally. To sign up for the monthly Beauty Heroes Discovery box (my absolute favorite mail day each month!), check out the Beauty Heroes site.

100% Pure Lip Caramel in Truffle, $25

Lip color is one of those products that I urge all of my clients to choose with a discerning eye, since we regularly ingest its ingredients. This gorgeous rust-tinged rose 'lip caramel' from 100% Pure is a perfect example of a lip color that's safe to ingest, but doesn't compromise one bit on color or feel. It goes on with a lip gloss applicator, but has none of the heavy, sticky residue that you feel with most glosses. This lip color is so highly pigmented and light that it reminds me more of a stain, which I absolutely love! After testing the Truffle Lip Caramel (which gets its deep hue from fruit, root, and achiote seed natural pigments), I want the entire shade range. 100% Pure created a winner with this formula!

 

 

 

Tata Harper Clarifying Moisturizer, $105

I've been a fan of Tata Harper's products since her very early days. As she has slowly and carefully added to her line, she continues to surpass expectations with gorgeous formulas that work. Her latest launch, Clarifying Moisturizer, amps up the calming, healing, and balancing ingredients in a season when lots of us struggle with transitional breakouts and slowed cell turnover. Whether your skin is blemish-prone all year, or autumn and winter are trouble times, this lightweight moisturizer is a perfect choice. You won't worry about moisture that's too rich for easily-clogged pores, and you won't be stuck with dryness and irritation because you skimped on hydration. Superstar ingredients in this formula include a plant sugar extract that helps feed probiotic (read: blemish-preventing) bacteria on your skin's surface, and a blend of healing fruit extracts and oils that calm redness and fight free radical damage. The only thing left to mention is the heavenly botanical scent produced by all of these natural ingredients—a Tata signature.

Eat Pretty Every Day is Here!

Meet Eat Pretty Every Day.

This incredibly info-packed volume offers hundreds of beautifying ideas for you to incorporate into your life—one for each day of the year. The inspiration behind the book was you—the readers who have asked me for more ideas, more guidance, and more real-life beauty nutrition strategies since Eat Pretty debuted! I wanted to put as many beautifying ideas as I could into a book that would motivate you every time you picked it up and flipped through its pages. I believe that, even though we all lead busy lives, we can all do one thing every day to nourish our best selves. And I tested that belief—to its core—while I was writing this book, trying to juggle clients, writing 1000+ words a day, and caring for my then-one year-old. It was HARD. I was depleted. But I used my own advice to nourish and build myself back up during an intense time. The ideas that made the cut for this book are the real-life strategies that I use myself, and recommend to my clients.

The message: do one thing every day to make yourself glow, as the book challenges you!

Inside you'll find more than a simple page-a-day book. Eat Pretty Every Day is organized seasonally, so the ideas you read will more closely match the spirit, intentions, and your personal beauty needs of that season.

There's really something for everyone here. I know from working with clients around the world that we all learn, absorb, and get inspired in different ways. So the entries in Eat Pretty Every Day incorporate beautifying recipes, kitchen tips, self-care practices, mantras to bring mindfulness to mealtime, physical activities, weekly challenges, hands-on projects, food profiles, and so many other varied approaches to bringing more beauty into your body and your life. Every entry and approach may not suit you, but since there is so much variety you are sure to find many ideas that will be a great fit for your lifestyle. THOSE entries are the ones that will stick with you, and help you build more beauty into your daily routine!

Check out some more visuals of what you'll find inside:

I hope that you'll check out Eat Pretty Every Day, and let me know if you're inspired by what you find inside. Eat Pretty Every Day will be released on October 25th, but you can preorder today on Indiebound, Amazon.comBarnesandnoble.com, and Chronicle Books.

And don't miss this preorder bonus:

The first 100 US-based readers who preorder Eat Pretty Every Day and enter their info at http://budurl.com/eatprettyeveryday will receive a lovely package with a limited edition Eat Pretty Every Day print, a special dessert recipe, and a sachet of one of my favorite tulsi teas for beauty!

Currently Using: Laurel Whole Plant Organics

Dear Beauty Heroes,
You did it again this month. Laurel Whole Plant Organics? Really?!
I broke into a spontaneous happy dance at my mailbox.  Can't wait for Sept.
xo, Jolene

It's no secret that I live for summer. To me, the sun is a source of joy, energy, healing, and bliss like none other. But its intensity touches every part of our mind, body and spirit, including—very visibly—our skin. Even though I practice a host of strategies to stave off some of the sun's negative effects (extra hydration, wide-brimmed hat and shades, sun protective diet, skipping extra sugar, totally luxe natural SPF, etc.), my skin and yours can always, always use some natural healing therapy.

This month I lifted the sunny, yellow-orange tissue paper inside my Beauty Heroes subscription box to find one of the most beautiful facial serums every to grace my vanity table. Laurel Whole Plant Organics Sun Damage Repair Serum shines not only because of its incredible lineup of 27 healing ingredients (including oils like red raspberry, jojoba, carrot seed, and cranberry seed that offer sun protective benefits), but because the source of these ingredients is the whole, organic plant—not a derivative or isolated compound. If this is your first introduction to the Laurel WPO brand, just know that this remarkable lineup of products offers some of the best formulas you can put on your skin. Laurel Shaffer, the owner and formulator, creates 'slow beauty' formulas that are incredibly concentrated (no alcohol or water to be found here) and made from organic, raw, whole plants like fresh flowers and herbs.

To say that your skin recognizes the difference is an understatement.

My previous experience with Laurel's Antioxidant Serum makes it a product I still recommend to clients, and this month my skin has been loving the naturally orange-hued Sun Damage Repair Serum in place of moisturizer. It's one self care ritual I will take with me well into the fall.

Speaking of self care, one of the biggest challenges for my clients (and—I'll admit it—myself) is carving out regular self care time. That means nourishing and replenishing inside and out even before getting burned out from doing, giving, and working too much. As adults, there's not always someone there to remind you to slow down, or to create a moment of self care, pure and simple, in your day. Beauty Heroes has become a monthly self-care moment like none other. It's like getting a package from your best friend (the one who really knows you). Not all self care has to have a price tag, but this one has proven well worth it for me during times of stress and depletion.

If you join by August 20th, you can get this month's Laurel Whole Plant Organics hero selection, plus a sample Laurel Honey Berry Enzyme Mask (one of my absolute favorites!) and Laurel Before & After Sun Body Oil. Note: I'll receive a small affiliate commission if you purchase a subscription.

Next month, you'll find your self care surprise in the mail box and I have a feeling you'll be doing a happy dance right along with me.

Beauty Heroes: Like Having a Beauty Ed for a BFF

While I've received plenty of free product samples in my days as a beauty editor, I haven't monetized my relationships with beauty brands. In short, I have never been paid by a brand to promote their products, period. I don't want to push one brand over another to you, my trusted audience, simply because of $$! While that's still very much the case, I've just decided to sign on as as a brand ambassador with Beauty Heroes, a subscription box that delivers carefully curated natural beauty products. I fell in love with the Beauty Heroes concept because it allows subscribers to experience some of the best products in natural beauty for $39/month—a truly affordable and, frankly, outstanding price for the goods inside.

If you're on the fence about Beauty Heroes, know that's NOT just like every other subscription box out there. In fact, it's completely different. Each month, you get one amazing, full size 'hero' product from a standout green beauty line delivered to your door. For $39, you often get a product that's worth much, much more—that's without taking into account the value of a service that makes you feel like you have a beauty editor as a best friend or penpal!

[Check out my behind-the-scenes Beauty Heroes ambassador interview here!]

Beauty Heroes' December box is a holiday show-stopper. When it arrives on your doorstep, you find a 30mL dropper bottle of Vintner's Daughter Active Botanical Serum tucked carefully inside gleaming gold tissue paper. This serum, for anyone who hasn't tried it or heard the ecstatic buzz from the dewy-skinned women who are already using it, is the definition of a 'beauty hero.'

This Vintner's Daughter serum has become an obsessed-over product with good reason. Skin loves it. The first time I applied it my cheeks turned a peachy pink, which I first thought was an allergic reaction. Then I realized it was actually a healthy, well-circulated glow that I hadn't ever seen from a serum before! It contains 22 botanical ingredients, from avocado and rose to turmeric and sea buckthorn, making every drop incredibly potent. And this serum is priced to reflect that potency—it's typically sold at $185 for a bottle (yes, that makes the December Beauty Heroes box an incredible, incredible deal).

If you're ready to make your beauty routine a little greener month by month, I think joining Beauty Heroes is an ideal gift to yourself and your health for 2016. And if you just want to help your skin or the skin of a loved one take on a more radiant glow, ordering the December Beauty Heroes box couldn't be a better fit at a better price.

In the interest of full disclosure, being a Beauty Heroes ambassador means that I'll get a small kickback (about $5) if you choose to join Beauty Heroes through this link, and I'll get to sample and review each monthly box for you, my discerning audience of natural beauties. Just so you know, my decision to become an ambassador isn't motivated by the promise of affiliate dollars, or free goods. I think this program is a great way to green your beauty routine, for a low price, one month at a time, and I'm proud to share it!

Beauty Heroes ships to the US, Canada, Australia, Spain, Ireland, Poland, South Africa, India, Israel, Japan, the UK, Germany, Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, Portugal, France, Greece, Singapore, Hong Kong, Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus!

Autumn Product Obsessions

What's on my vanity, tucked in my purse (or diaper bag!) and stocking my bathroom cabinet this season? Here are the natural and organic products that have become my absolute favorites for beauty this fall...

Ilia Sheer Vivid Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20, $42   

I'm always on the lookout for exceptional foundations and tinted moisturizers that meet my natural standards, so when I heard that Ilia was releasing a new product, I had to check it out. This tinted moisturizer has light, buildable coverage (hence the 'sheer vivid' moniker), and SPF 20 from zinc oxide (12%) and titanium dioxide (2%). The first time I wore it, I felt like my skin stayed strangely tacky (I'm not a fan of powder in the fall and winter), even though the formula is slightly matte.  Sure enough, on subsequent tests I found that it leaves a layer of dewiness on the skin, thanks to its moisture-attracting hyaluronic acid. While that took a little getting used to, the product doesnt look greasy on your skin. It covers lightly and evenly— no streaks. A winning combo!

Pursoma Hot Tub Bath, $34

I'll admit it— I was a bit intimidated before using this mix of potent detoxifying bath salts. After all, the brand itself calls the blend, complete with spicy organic ginger root powder, 'no joke.' Fortunately, I met Pursoma's amazing founder Shannon Vaughn at an eco-beauty event we co-hosted at Brooklyn's Shen Beauty, and she promised me I could handle it. At the first sign of a fall cold, I dumped this warming mix of ginger, sea salt and French clay into my bathwater, soaked as long as I could, and wrapped myself in a heavy robe to sweat out the toxins. I awoke the next morning feeling awesome (and in need of another bath after all that sweat!). Keep one around for cold & flu season.

Organic Bath Co. Stress Less Organic Sugar Scrub, $27

When I'm not taking toxin-flushing ginger soaks, I like to chill out with more relaxing aromatherapy. This Stress Less sugar scrub combines Fair Trade sugar with super-hydrating organic oils and a mellow lavender scent, from organic essential oil. I'm using it this fall to smooth my skin (cell turnover naturally slows down when the weather cools) and remind myself to breathe deep. 4-7-8 breath anyone?

Zoe Organics Mama's Ritual Roll-On Aromatherapy Oil, $26

Being a mom makes me wonder, what did I ever do with so much free time before?! Caring for an energetic 9-month old who desperately wants to walk on his own, I totally get why Zoe Organics wanted to create their new 'Mama's Ritual' line of products. If I dont reserve a few daily moments for myself, I might forget how amazing it feels to just sit quietly and breathe in the calming scents of sandalwood, geranium, lavender and peitigran. This oil blend helps me to be present too, because when mama is cared for, she's better at caring for everyone else.

 

Farmaesthetics Warming Oil, $18

The ultimate cold weather body oil. Infused with clove, lavender and orange, this rich oil produces a mild circulation boost in your skin a few minutes after applying. It's just enough to chase away a chill, and give you a just-left-the-fireside glow. It's also intended to rev up a stagnant system, warm the spirit and open the heart, and I feel like it does just that.