Yogurt, the King of Probiotics

By Belle+Bella

Yogurt is one of the most familiar sources of probiotics—”good” bacteria that keep a healthy balance in your gut. Studies suggest that probiotics can help ease lactose intolerance. They also may help tame gas, diarrhea, and other digestive problems.

What are Probiotics?

Probiotics are commonly defined as viable microorganisms (bacteria or yeasts) that exhibit a beneficial effect on the health of the host when they are ingested. They are most helpful in our digestive system or GI tract as large amounts are typically found in the intestines and colon. Probiotics are created naturally by our bodies but we can also find them in certain foods and supplements. They are used in foods, especially in fermented dairy products, but also in pharmaceutical preparations. The development of new probiotic strains aims at more active beneficial organisms.

What do they do? 

Probiotics help move food through your gut. Originally, they were used for relief of such unmentionable issues, such as diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), or colitis, as well as bringing calcium and vitamin D into the diets of persons with lactose intolerance or sensitivity. Scientists added to the bacterial benefits list protection from harmful bacteria overgrowth, cancers of the gastrointestinal tract, and high cholesterol. Researchers are still trying to figure out which strains are best for certain health problems.

More recent studies show probiotics can help counter systemic inflammation, celiac symptoms, yeast infections, obesity, and hypertension, while stemming infections (both bacterial and viral) and boosting immunity…maybe even athletic performance!

Belle+Bella Yogurt

You can make your own yogurt right at home with Belle+Bella’s YoMagic Automatic Yogurt Maker and our Non-Dairy Yogurt Starter. Create any flavor of yogurt you’d like and it’s gluten-free, non-GMO, non-dairy, Paleo friendly, and has billions of live probiotics!

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.



Restore Your Gut Health!

Maintaining balance in your gut is vital to overall health. Understanding and revealing the relationship between our mental and physical well-being and a healthy gut microbiome is on the leading edge of medical research. Our internal ecosystem is ideally composed of more than 30,000 different species of friendly bacteria that call our body home. A diet rich in micro-nutrients, as found in naturally colorful foods, encourages biodiversity in our gut. But, sometimes a healthy diet isn’t enough and adding a supplement to your daily regimen can be beneficial. Restore is a new generation of earth-derived supplements that promote an optimal gut environment. It’s not a probiotic. It’s not a prebiotic. Rather, it’s a carbon-rich, alkaline liquid, with lignite-derived trace organics and essential trace amino acids. With 70% of the immune system located in our gut lining, a supplement can be a simple way to maintain the health of your digestive tract.

Heavily processed foods, GMO’s, gluten, and environmental toxins, such as herbicides and animal antibiotics destroy the healthy bacteria in our digestive tract. These toxins can penetrate through our gut lining and into the circulatory system leading to immune system decline, which can result in a breakdown of our overall health and well-being. Restore’s proprietary lignite extract was developed by a team of world-renowned scientists and leading physicians to support the integrity of our intestinal walls. This creates a stable environment in our gut where good bacteria can grow and thrive, helping to promote optimal immune system function and support your well-being.

Specialized bacteria in a healthy gut break down foods and generate carbon metabolites that are as unique as snowflakes. These metabolites act as communication networks. Restore helps to re-establish and amplify this primary communication system between bacteria and our body. When the entire microbiome is working together, our body can absorb and utilize nutrients as biologically intended. Bacteria communicate the same way that cells do, through moving patterns of charges called redox signaling. Restore works as a liquid circuit board that allows signals to flow through those carbon snowflakes in a graceful pattern of balance.

Restore is unlike any supplement on the market. Made in the US, Restore is a soil-derived, scientifically-backed mineral supplement that has been shown in lab studies to strengthen tight-junctions in the gut wall—our firewall against toxins entering the body. Tight-junctions are gate keepers between the cells of our mega-membrane, which extends from the nasal cavity to the colon. Restore works immediately to promote your body’s own powers of defense and detoxification by delivering a balanced family of bacterial metabolites to promote a healthy firewall for tight-junctions in the gut wall and blood-brain barrier. Tight-junction integrity can be impacted by environmental factors, such as herbicides and pesticides in our foods, clothing, cars, biotech toxins, and even in the air we breathe. As a result, our immune system can become overwhelmed. Restore provides the communication network needed to support the return of biodiversity to the gut ecosystem that supports normal immune function.

In laboratory studies, university-based scientists have shown that Restore is an effective way to boost membrane integrity and support the tight-junction cells of the gut lining, even in the presence of toxins that tend to destroy membrane structure. Restore helps to create a biological environment for good gut bacteria to grow and flourish, which supports positive improvements in your health and well-being. By enhancing our body’s natural firewall, Restore works where your health begins, in your gut!

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Refuel Your Body with Garden of Life’s NEW Sport Line

After a tough workout, your body needs to replenish essential nutrients that have been depleted to keep you going strong. Our bodies need protein to help repair and recharge muscles, antioxidants to promote a speedy recovery, and probiotics to maintain a healthy immune system. Garden of Life has designed an amazing new sports nutrition line that encompasses everything you need to maximize your workout from start to finish and support your body’s needs in between workouts.†

Organic Plant-Based Protein

Our Organic Plant-Based Protein is designed to refuel and rebuild your muscles. Intensive training and exercise breaks down muscle tissue and expends essential nutrients needed to repair tissue damage sustained during your workout.

One serving delivers 30g of protein made from US grown peas, garbanzo and navy beans, lentils, and cranberry seed protein—giving you all the essential amino acids your body needs. It also provides 5.5g of BCAAs and 5g of glutamine, which helps reduce recovery time.† Also, our unique Organic Muscle Recovery Blend helps to promote a faster recovery with antioxidants like Organic Tart Cherries, Apples, Turmeric, Goji berries, and Blueberries.† Intensive training regimens can deplete your immune system as well; to combat this effect we’ve added 2 billion CFUs of clinically-studied probiotics to support immune system health.†

This plant-based protein is available in two organically-flavored options, vanilla and chocolate, and is gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, and contains NO artificial ingredients. It is also the ONLY Certified Organic, Non-GMO Project Verified plant protein certified clean by both the NSF Certified for Sport® and Informed-Choice.

Truly Grass-Fed Whey Protein

In order to create a Truly Grass-Fed Whey, Garden of Life searched for a supply chain that could provide our demand for clean ingredients that meet our premium product standards. Sustainable family farms in Ireland provided us with high-quality whey that is free of hormones like rBST and rBGH, and antibiotic-free, undenatured, cold-pressed, micro-filtered, and BSE-free.† We have also obtained Non-GMO certification for this product, making it the ONLY Non-GMO Project Verified whey protein!

One serving delivers 24g protein as well as some of the beneficial components found only in whole milk, such as immunoglobulins and beneficial growth factors.† This formula also includes essential amino acids, 6g of BCAAs, and 4g of glutamine, which help stop muscle breakdown and promote muscle repair.†

Lastly, 2 billion CFU of clinically studied probiotics were added to support immune health during intensive workouts.† Our whey protein is also available in organic vanilla and chocolate flavors and can be used before your workout meal and/or within 1 hour post–workout for maximum benefits!†

Plant-Based Performance Protein Bars

When you are exercising hard, a protein bar is a great way to provide your body with protein and amino acids to help refuel and repair your muscles. Protein also helps to keep you satisfied and supports healthy blood sugar levels during exercise.† As well as providing 20 grams of organic plant protein, these bars contain only 8 grams of sugar and 10 grams of soluble fiber from Organic Tapioca fiber.†

Our protein bars are available in 4 delicious flavors: Peanut Butter Chocolate, Chocolate Fudge, Chocolate Mint, and Sea Salt Caramel—with no artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. They are also Certified USDA Organic, Non-GMO Project Verified, NSF Certified for Sport, Informed-Choice for Sport Certified, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, and Certified Vegan by Vegan Action.†

 Clean Sports Nutrition

For people who are dedicated to exercise, sports, and taking care of their body, quality nutrition is extremely important. Our plant-based or whey proteins are designed to refuel and repair your muscle tissue, giving you energy, support, and stronger muscles.† The performance protein bars provide a convenient source of protein, plus a healthy dose of fiber that are perfect for your on-the-go lifestyle.† Garden of Life Sport takes a comprehensive approach to health and fitness that gives you everything you need to maximize your daily activities, maintain your exercise regimen, or succeed in sports competitions.† Take your fitness goals to the next level and fuel your body for victory with clean sports nutrition that makes a difference!

 †These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


Give your Workout the Boost it Needs with Garden of Life’s NEW Sport Line

Over the years, Garden of Life has created many great products used by active and athletic people. However, it was time to raise the bar by providing those dedicated to improving their physical performance with truly clean sports nutrition formulas. We believe that athletes, who treat their bodies as their temples, deserve much cleaner and better products. With this in mind, Garden of Life developed a new line dedicated to those who are passionate about sports and fitness.

The new sport line was designed to support all aspects of your fitness regimen. From pre-workout to post-workout and everything in-between, Garden of Life Sport provides you with everything you need to maintain your commitment to health, without any of the junk that slows you down.

Pre-Workout Energy + Focus

To start your workout off strong, Garden of Life’s Pre-Workout Energy + Focus is designed to boost energy levels and help you focus during workouts.† This product encompasses everything your body needs to push through your workout.

It delivers clean fuel from whole food vitamin B12 and organic cane sugar to boost your blood glucose levels, aid in fat and carbohydrate metabolism, and optimize energy production—giving you a quick burst of energy to help delay using up your energy reserves.†

To boost stamina, organic kale, spinach, and beets rich in nitric oxide and antioxidants help circulate more oxygen, fuel, and nutrients into exercising muscles.†

Scientific studies also show that caffeine improves short-term, high intensity performance during endurance-based exercise. To retain energy and maintain mental focus, Garden of Life’s Pre-Workout Energy + Focus includes natural caffeine from organic coffeeberries to keep you going strong throughout your workout.†

When fuels are burned during your workout, damaging free radicals are created. To combat this effect, organic superfruits naturally loaded with vitamin C and other antioxidants are included to fight these free radicals. They also help prevent muscle soreness and combat fatigue, which enables you to recover faster.†

Post-Workout Recovery

After you’ve completed your workout, you have depleted many of the nutrients your body needs. Garden of Life’s Post-Workout Recovery is scientifically-formulated to help you recover faster and is designed to be taken immediately after your workout.†

In the first 30 minutes after exercise, your muscles soak up sugars in order to rebuild glycogen. Scientific research shows that adding protein to a post-workout drink enhances the recovery process and delivers important amino acids needed to support muscle repair and recovery.†

Intensive training also breaks down muscle tissue, which the body repairs and rebuilds after your workout. It’s vital to replenish magnesium and B vitamins regularly after exercise to support cellular energy production, fight fatigue, and support energy metabolism.

Also a unique blend of high-antioxidants, including organic tart cherries, goji berries, blueberries, and apples—all help to reduce inflammation and muscle soreness associated with exercise.† While turmeric and rooibos tea help alleviate oxidative stress by helping to rid the body of free radicals.

Clean Sports Nutrition

In summary, anyone engaged in regular exercise can benefit from these unique sport formulas. They were designed to support your workout from beginning to end, so you can perform at your best. The pre-workout Energy + Focus will help sharpen mental focus, increase stamina, and give you everything you need to set the stage for a great performance! And when you’re finished, the post-workout recovery helps your body replenish glycogen, repair muscle, reduce soreness and recovery time, so you can train again sooner!† The Sport line is also Certified USDA Organic, Non-GMO Project Verified, NSF Certified for Sport, and Informed-Choice Sport Certified. So take care of your body before and after your workout with Garden of Life’s new Sport line!

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

It’s Time to Relax & Restore!

Dr. Formulated Magnesium Relax & Restore powder is a delicious, fizzy drink that can help calm you down and relax your body, so you can get a better night’s sleep while restoring your body’s optimal magnesium levels.† This product features the first-ever whole food, organic chelated magnesium made using the finest USA-grown organic peas, as well as 1 billion CFU of live probiotics, such as Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus bulgaricus, and Lactobacillus acidophilus—all to support healthy digestion and promote regularity.†

Did you know that if certain nutrients your body needs are out of balance, it can add to the stress you feel? Most people don’t get the daily amount of magnesium required and some forms of magnesium are simply not absorbed well in the body, which leaves many of us with deficiencies. To add to the problem, our magnesium levels need to be in balance with our calcium levels in order for it to be most effective. This can lead to a magnesium-calcium imbalance and when calcium and magnesium levels are out of balance, they can cause the body to become perpetually stressed.

Calcium is well-known for its role in maintaining overall health, including keeping bones and teeth strong.† But, getting too much calcium can be problematic, especially if there’s not enough magnesium to accompany it.

Too much calcium can also deplete magnesium supplies in the body and that’s not good for your health because, while calcium is necessary to excite nerves and muscle contraction, magnesium is required for calming nerves and relaxing muscles.† Likewise, calcium serves to make bones hard and rigid, while magnesium helps bones not become overly brittle.†

Generally, most people get more calcium than magnesium in their diets, but it takes adequate magnesium levels to push calcium out of cells, enabling the body to truly relax and restore.† In short, magnesium plays a significant role in helping us de-stress, so we can sleep better and calcium is needed to provide our body with balance. †

In addition to being Non-GMO Project Verified, NSF Certified Gluten-Free, and Vegan Certified, Relax & Restore is also soy-free, dairy-free, and sugar-free. This product is available in 3 delicious flavors—Original (No Stevia), Yummy Orange Dreamsicle, and Delicious Raspberry Lemon.

So, if you’re feeling stressed out, exhausted, or your just unable to sleep well, consider a whole food magnesium supplement, such as Relax & Restore at bedtime to help you de-stress and get the calming rejuvenation your body craves.† Don’t let stress get the best of you, instead, Relax & Restore!

†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Mind & Body Health Begins with Good Digestion

Good digestion is a crucial factor that influences our health. Together with oxygen and water, food provides the basic materials needed to build and maintain our mind and body. The digestive system is like the body’s engine, turning food into the fuel we need by utilizing the nutrients found in foods, such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, and plant compounds—which are all needed to nourish us and sustain our health.

The entire digestive process is part of the nervous system and is directly networked to our brain. The phrase “trust your gut” illustrates this brain-gut connection. The digestive system and brain exchange signals that trigger digestion, from start to finish. Bitter tastes in particular, help jump-start this process.

Early humans living largely on plant-based diets, consumed bitters as a matter of course. Evolving alongside bitter plants, our bodies naturally came to recognize their therapeutic mechanisms. However, with modern food options skewed heavily toward sweet and salty flavors, bitter foods are largely missing from our diets and our digestive health has suffered as a result.

To make up for the deficiency of bitter flavors in most modern diets, many practitioners recommend the use of a bitter herbal supplement. That’s where bitters liquid herbal extracts can aid your digestive system and improve its function. Digestive bitters go to work the moment they hit your tongue, signaling the brain and digestive system to produce gastric fluids and enzymes. It’s like giving your body a pre-digestive “heads up”.

Herb Pharm is a company made up of herbalists, scientists, and other individuals nestled in the fertile growing region of GMO-free Josephine County, OR. They’ve been growing and extracting herbs with precision, care, and respect for the natural world since 1979. Better Bitters™ from Herb Pharm harness the inherent power of bitter herbs and deliver them to your digestive system in a convenient, effective manner. Formulated from herbal traditions and expertly extracted to retain natural plant chemistries and potencies. This extract is certified organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, and comes in 4 flavors—Classic, Orange, Bittersweet, and Absinthium. Better Bitters™ may be effectively used in tandem with probiotic supplements and are available in a 1 oz travel-size or a 2 oz home-use size.

Better Bitters™ from Herb Pharm is an easy and effective way to put the bitter back into your diet. Engaging your digestive system with foods possessing a bitter quality or utilizing a bitter supplement can be beneficial to your health and help keep your digestive system on track. So while you trust your gut, your gut can trust us—treat yourself to better health with Herb Pharm!

†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Discover the Health Benefits of Fiber

Did you know that fiber can help with weight management, heart health, and blood sugar control, in addition to promoting regularity? Fiber is an essential nutrient that is not digested in the small intestine and passes into the large intestine where it is partially or fully fermented. This process helps support digestive health, regularity, and provides many other health benefits throughout the body.

Fiber is available in two forms, soluble or insoluble, that are both beneficial to your health. Soluble fiber helps support the population of friendly bacteria in the colon, softens stool, helps promote cardiovascular health, and supports the production of protective short-chain fatty acids in the colon. Insoluble fiber helps absorb toxins and moves waste material more quickly through the colon, removes excess bile acids, increases the bulk of stool, and supports a normal, healthy intestinal tract lining.

Health authorities, including the Food & Drug Administration, recommend 25 to 40 grams daily of fiber to maintain good health. Most Americans only consume 10 to 15 grams of fiber each day, which is less than half of the recommended amount. For improved health, it is beneficial to eat a variety of high fiber foods and take a fiber supplement as needed. Daily fiber supplements from Yerba Prima are a simple, healthy way to help ensure you’re getting an adequate amount of dietary fiber.

Fiber Pioneers

Do you recognize the names of fiber pioneers, such as Graham and Kellogg, who educated the public about the benefits of fiber in the late 1800’s? Of course you do. In the United States, Yerba Prima pioneered the development of natural dietary fiber products based on scientific research on benefits of fiber. Yerba Prima was the first company to make natural fiber supplements with all five fiber types and with a balance of soluble and insoluble fiber.

The Many Benefits of Fiber

Everyone knows that fiber helps maintain regularity, but do you know what other benefits it has to offer. Here’s a glance at the many health advantages fiber provides.

Weight Maintenance:

  • Aids in weight loss
  • Promotes satiety when taken with a meal
  • Helps maintain blood sugar levels within the normal range to reduce hunger signals
  • Recommended Product: Daily Fiber Formula– Orange Flavor (Sugar-Free)

 Colon & Digestive Health:

  • Increases good bacteria in the colon to improve digestion and elimination
  • Promotes normal colon function for people with digestive upset
  • Yerba Prima fiber products are Certified Gluten-Free
  • Recommended Product: Colon Care Formula, Colon Care Caps

Heart & Cardiovascular Health:

  • Supports heart health
  • Helps maintain cholesterol levels within the normal range
  • Recommended Product: Psyllium Husks Powder

Blood Sugar Control:

  • Viscous fiber helps maintain blood sugar levels within the normal range
  • Normalizes blood glucose concentrations, both after a meal and all day
  • Recommended Product: Daily Fiber Formula


  • Gentle long-term solution for constipation
  • Reduces problems with diarrhea or loose stools
  • Promotes proper tone of colon muscles to help people avoid stimulant laxatives
  • Recommended Product: Psyllium Whole Husks, Psyllium Husks Caps

The take-home message here is that most Americans need to double or triple their fiber intake in order to meet the recommended amounts. Consuming an adequate amount of fiber can offer a multitude of health benefits, while keeping your body regular. This is why so many doctors and nutritional researchers alike recommend that people eat more high-fiber foods and utilize daily fiber supplements. Help your body function at its best and maintain your health with premium quality products from Yerba Prima!

Sweet News for Natural Remedies

By Michael Wohlfeldt, ND

Let us fill you in on the juiciest natural secret to ease pain, swelling, premature aging, gout, sleeplessness, and more. Tart cherries are one of nature’s most powerful superfoods and they have many important nutrients that can be advantageous to your health! This antioxidant-rich fruit provides powerful health benefits that can be experienced more immediately than most other superfoods.

We are not talking about sweet cherries or black cherries, nor are we talking about cherry juice. Pure Planet’s Organic Tart Cherry Concentrate is a highly concentrated juice made from rare, organic varieties of tart-sour cherries that can provide as much as 33 cherries in one tablespoon! Tart cherries contain a wide variety of antioxidants and phyto-chemicals, known to support healthy joint function, promote healthy uric acid metabolism, encourage a deeper, more restful sleep, and provide a rich source of antioxidants that can help prevent premature cellular aging. These products are also non-GMO, 100% natural, vegan, soy-free, and gluten-free.

The bright, deep color of the tart cherry reveals its unprecedented strength. The tart cherry fruit contains a variety and potency of some of the most valuable fruit phytonutrients available in nature, with the robust power of ellagic acid and anthocyanins. Ellagic acid studied in test tubes has shown strong anti-cancer and antioxidant properties. Epidemiological studies suggest that increased consumption of anthocyanins can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), which is still one of the most common causes of mortality among men and women. The fruit also possesses anti-inflammatory agents that can help alleviate a variety of ailments, such as asthma, osteoarthritis, muscle pain, exercise-related muscle damage, or gout.

The health benefits of tart cherries have only been known for about 20 years. Scientists studying growers of tart cherries observed that they looked younger, had strong hearts, no arthritis, and slept like babies—prompting the researchers to ask why.

Subsequent studies revealed that tart cherries were a powerhouse of antioxidant nutrients. Some researchers suggested that, consumed as a concentrate specifically, sour cherries can be a natural alternative to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) and sleep aids. Tart cherries have naturally occurring melatonin, which can help balance circadian rhythms for proper sleep in the evening. Taken during the day, tart cherry concentrate will not make you sleepy. Take a tablespoon of tart cherry concentrate during the day or night and experience the many benefits it has to offer.

Pure Planet’s Organic Tart Cherry Concentrate can help alleviate a multitude of conditions, such as metabolic issues, inflammatory problems, joint pain, insomnia, as well as other conditions. Studies have shown this antioxidant-rich fruit can help prevent and ease chronic diseases as well as provide your body with the essential nutrients needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle. You can dilute it with water, add it to a smoothie, or pour it on your vanilla ice cream! So take advantage of one of nature’s best sources of essential nutrients and discover the health benefits of tart cherries!

Natural Deodorants Put to the Test

By Donnie Williams, Makeup Artist/ Receptionist

With the increasing trend of going natural, switching to cleaner, more pure home and personal care products seems to be a no brainer. With all of the hype nowadays it’s not uncommon for me to be asked about natural deodorants; in fact, it’s actually pretty common. After almost 8 years experience here at Natur-Tyme, I have run the gamut on natural deodorants and after doing so here are my top three picks.

During the winter and cooler times, I like Aubrey Organics E Plus High C Roll-On. The classic scent has a fresh and clean smell, which I enjoy. On cool days, this deodorant can get me through the day without my having to reapply halfway through the day, which is a major pet peeve for me. Last fall, the company released the same formula in two new scents, coconut sugar and lavender. I still have yet to try them, but I do know they both smell great and can only imagine they work just as well.

The second runner up is Schmidt’s Lavender Sage Deodorant. This deodorant scared me a little at first. It comes in a jar with a spatula and you apply it with your finger tips, a method that was foreign to me at the time. The baking soda base is very absorbent and I feel it keeps me drier than any of my other top three picks. This deodorant is second runner-up only because of the application method, which I know will deter some folks. This deodorant is a great pick for any time of the year and it even holds up in the hot, sweaty summer months. Schmidt’s is also available in a variety of scents and they have recently released a stick form, which I am very eager to try!

Lastly, my number one pick is Nubian Heritage Honey & Black Seed 24 Hour Deodorant. This is the winner for me hands down! I love the variety of scents available for this deodorant and it actually has the ability to work for 24 hours! With this deodorant, I don’t have to worry about pesky mid-day reapplication and most days I can go longer than the 24-hour mark. The formula doesn’t stain my clothes and holds up beautifully in the dead heat of summer. I will reach for this deodorant first, every time!

To conclude, I must note that I believe natural deodorants vary somewhat from person to person, as they work with our body’s natural chemistry. You may find that one works better for you than another, that’s awesome! These are just the findings of my own personal trial and error as well as the helpful feedback and purchasing habits of the many customers I speak with day to day here at Natur-Tyme. I hope you find my discoveries helpful!

Natural Hiking and Camping Beauty Must-Haves

By Jessica-Anne Manson, Licensed Esthetician

In the recent weeks of amazing weather, it’s without a doubt that my boyfriend and I take advantage of our days off together. We go hit a hiking trail or take the weekend to head up into the Adirondacks to hike a mountain for a couple days. We also make sure that we pack some essentials, other than water and snacks, to make the trip more fun. Sometimes it is a small drawstring bag and other times it’s packed into a backpack for the longer trips.

When there is little to no water, we like to bring some face and body wipes. We carry natural, biodegradable wipes in order to keep ourselves clean while hiking. I prefer the Acure Fragrance-Free Argan Wipes, which are durable and clean the skin of dirt, oils, and sweat as we trek along. For those who have sensitive skin, Aubrey Organics also makes wipes for sensitive skin with calming ingredients like Sea Aster and Aloe.

Another item that really is good if you do have access to water, even if it’s a natural source, is Alaffia’s Liquid Black African Soap. This is similar to having a castile soap, but is biodegradable and won’t harm the eco-system. Preferably, I would recommend getting the unscented soap, but the Eucalyptus Tea Tree or Lavender Ylang Ylang scents would make for a good minor bug repelling bonus.

Next would be a DEET-Free Insect Repellant. DEET, also known as diethyltoluamide, has a bad rap for causing many health issues with consistent use. So far, an essential oil based insect repellant works very well against pests. My boyfriend and I both swear by Quantam’s Buzz Away, especially with the higher geranium oil used in order to deter ticks. Another reputable brand would be All-Terrain, which has been awarded “Best Gear” by National Geographic Adventure and has excellent feedback on its effectiveness.

Before we hit the sunscreens, did you know your lips can also be a susceptible to sunburns as well? When purchasing your sunscreen, it’s best that you get a lip balm with SPF in it as well. Good ones that we’ve tried and carry are jane iredale’s Lip Drink with SPF 15 and Badger’s SPF 15 Lip Balms, which both do a wonderful job.

The best part is sunscreen, which I saved for last. Along with keeping covered with a hat, sunglasses, and wearing clothes that cover skin, sunscreen is still very important. Lately, it’s been Mychelle Sun Shield Clear Spray with SPF 30. It has broad spectrum protection and helps cover the most forgotten, hard to reach places without too much of the chalky white appearance from the zinc oxide. It also protects you from both UVA and UVB Rays!

In the end, we come back with happy memories, lots of pictures (selfie sticks are very handy for trips like this), and we still have a lot left over for the next adventure.


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