Try This Delicious Anti-Aging Tea from Supple Skin

Supple Skin's loose tea comes in a wide variety of flavors for various purposes. Photo: Courtesy Supple Skin

For most of the past decade, I’ve been a coffee lover. As a former road warrior, I frequented a lot of city coffee shops and drank my share of airport coffee. But I’ve found something new to quench my thirst and soothe my spirit: La La’s Tea from Supple Skin. It’s filled with “Anti-Aging Antioxidants” that are not only healthy, but also delicious. Fancy that: a beverage that tastes good and does good for your body at the same time.

I have to admit that it took a while for me to get around to trying this product. I had it in my cupboard for a long time, preferring to take my coffee fix rather than brew up a cup of tea. My other excuse was that I didn’t have a tea pot; I had to buy a special tea cup so I could brew one cup at a time in my microwave. For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been  trying Supple Skin’s La La’s brand tea. And I love it!

The ingredients are are all “green teas and super food extracts.” Sounds like a bit of advertising hype, until you read the contents:

“Ingredients: Organic Green Tea, Green Tea Variety, White Tea, Lemon Myrtle, Citrus, Osmanthus, Pomegranate, Mango, Guarana energy [What’s that?], Oolong Tea, Stevia, Ancient Sea Minerals, Goji, Cornflowers, Mango, Papaya, Honey and Lemon, Organic Stevia, Organic Spirulina, Brazilian Acerola berry, Aloe Vera power [should that be “powder”?], Organic Fo-ti (powder), Green Tea Powder.”

It’s after eight p.m. as I write this, and with all that green tea in my teacup, I’m wondering if it will keep me awake. I’m pretty sensitive to caffeine, so it might be a long night. Since most of my tea-drinking happens in the morning, that’s not usually something I think about. Still, for those who don’t have a caffeine problem, this could be the perfect cap to an evening meal. The flavor is slightly citrus-y, with a delicate aroma that tantalizes without being overpowering. I find it a refreshing change from a lot of the orange, lemon, or pomegranate teas I’ve tried from other companies.

Supple Skin’s La La’s tea comes loose in a brown-paper bag that holds two ounces of dried product. Two ounces doesn’t sound like much, but that’s a measure of weight, not volume. The directions say, “Steep 1 tsp of tea in a cup of hot water.” I don’t use a full teaspoon, yet my drink is satisfying and delicious. If you like a stronger cup, then steeping a full teaspoon might be a good idea. Because I’m content with weaker tea (and, let’s face it, I’m cheap), I tend to reuse the leaves from a previous cup and just add a small amount of fresh leaves to it. For me, this is yummy; for you, maybe not.

Supple Skin provides products for the health of your skin. Photo: Courtesy Supple Skin Boutique

It would be especially good if all of the ingredients were organic, but having some is better than having none. I just pulled out a couple of pieces of what looks and tastes like orange or lemon rind.  I don’t see “orange” in the list of ingredients, but maybe that’s what the company means by “Citrus.”

Most of the popular commercial teas that come in bags are finely chopped, but this product is different. The tea and other herbs in La La’s Tea are tightly wrapped in on themselves when dry, then expand into full leaves when wet. When I finish with the used leaves, I add them to our compost pile; it actually seems like I’m putting a food into the compost, not like I’m dropping some shredded bits of an unidentifiable substance.

Supple Skin offers a huge variety of teas, herbs, oils, and accessories. When I was offered the opportunity to review some of the Supple Skin products, the choices were almost overwhelming. If you visit their web store (and I suggest you do), you may find yourself wanting “some of this, and some of this, and some of this” like I did. The prices are low enough that you can probably try several varieties over a few months or weeks. There’s even a tea for psoriasis, a tea for acne, a tea for eczema, a tea for weight loss, and a whole lot more. Supple Skin also carries oils for reducing scars, soap nuts for washing your laundry, an organic eye mask, and citrus for vodka and soda! If you can’t find a product that appeals to you, I’ll be very surprised.

The fundamental idea behind Supple Skin is that what you put into your body affects your health — and that’s reflected in the health of your skin. I was just reading an article today in Real Simple that talked about how the foods we eat can age our skin or make it stay young looking. They might as well have interviewed the folks at Supple Skin; they seem to have figured that out long ago. Supple Skin’s La La’s Anti-Aging Antioxidants tea is actually good for your skin. Isn’t that a refreshing change!  And it’s reasonably priced for the amount you get: $12.95 when you purchase it on line from Supple Skin.

As you might expect, the Supple Skin website comes with the obligatory warning:

If you are taking any other herbs or supplements please consult with a qualified healthcare provider before starting any new regimen. If you are pregnant of breast feeding, consult with your physician before taking. Keep out of reach of children under 12 years and pets.

This information is for educational purposes only and has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.

This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

I love my new mug by The Tea Spot. Photo: Courtesy The Tea Spot

Okay. Consider yourself warned and informed.

While we’re on the subject of tea, let me put in a word for my new teacup from The Tea Spot. It’s a versatile three-piece system that allows you to brew the tea inside the ceramic strainer, which sits inside the cup. Put the lid on for brewing in the microwave, steeping tea leaves in boiling water, or keeping your drink warm on your desk. When your tea is as strong as you like, remove the lid and turn it over. Remove the strainer, and set it into the lid to drain. Then sip your tea from the cup and enjoy.  You can purchase a Steeping Mug from The Tea Spot on line for $21.95, or find one at a kitchen store near you.

Update 10/14/10: I had no trouble falling asleep last night after drinking La La’s Anti-Aging Antioxidant tea. Apparently, if there is caffeine, it isn’t enough to keep me awake. And that’s good news for those of us who like to drink a warm, comforting beverage before bed. JW

The Small Print

Blue Planet Green Living received free samples of various Supple Skin products, including La La’s Anti-Aging Antioxidant Tea. No other compensation or incentive was provided. We purchased the Tea Spot Steeping Mug from a local kitchen store.

Our review policy is to only review those products we feel merit overall positive comments. If we do not like a product, we do not review it. We are not influenced by complimentary products and provide our honest opinions. For more information, please visit the Policies tab on the top navigation bar.

Blue Planet Green Living has an affiliate relationship with Amazon.com. If you purchase this product or any other products through Amazon by clicking on our affiliate link, Our company will receive a small financial compensation from Amazon, which we use to sustain this website.

Julia Wasson

Blue Planet Green Living

Take the Itch Away with Motherlove Green Salve

Marie, Owen, and Calvin — happy kids on vacation, with no itches! Photo: Julie H.

Last week, I was sitting at my computer alternately scratching my first mosquito bite of the season and trying to page through my emails. No stranger to itching, I had remnants of poison ivy dotting my left knee. My second case of poison ivy so far this summer, darn it all.

Even though symptoms of my annual battle with the toxic vine are lessening each year thanks to a concoction my pharmacist sells, the itching is enough to drive me somewhat mad.

So, when the following email came up on my screen, it immediately caught my attention:

I’m writing on behalf of summer and all things itchy and scratchy. Figuring Iowa is full of mosquitoes after all the 4th of July rain, I’m reaching out to see if you’d be interested in reviewing the Green Salve from Motherlove Herbal Company. It’s saving our skin over in Wisconsin. Thanks!

Julie — the new Blog Review Mother for Motherlove Herbal Company

No way I’d turn down that offer. I immediately wrote back.

Julia to Julie

Oh, itchy and scratchy are very familiar terms. I’d love to review the Green Salve from Motherlove! I’m sitting at my computer scratching my poison ivy (3 weeks now and still itchy). I just had a mosquito bite last weekend, too. Soooooo… Please send it over! …

Julie to Julia

Wow! How did you manage to only get one mosquito bite (don’t come to Madison)? We picked raspberries in the woods and got poison ivy – now I just keep the green salve in my purse. I hope it helps with all your summer “ailments” too….

Julia to Julie

Motherlove Green Salve is the itch remover. Photo: Courtesy Motherlove

I am excited to try the green salve. My poison ivy is nearly gone, but it flares up and itches still.

Have you tried Rhustox? It’s a homeopathic medicine that my M.D. recommended to reduce my susceptibility to poison ivy. I seem to get less severe cases, though I’m still getting it. Supposed to take a few years to be “immune,” if that really ever happens. Worth trying, for sure, though it’s not covered by my insurance.

Would you be interested in taking a photo of one of your kids applying the salve to their bites/poison ivy (or one of their parents applying it)? They’d get to see themselves on our blog. (My kids are all grown up and far away. :[  ) …

Julie to Julia

Well, just in time, we all contracted swimmer’s itch at the lake yesterday. I’m attaching a photo of my daughter Marie holding the salve. We’re down almost to the bottom of the jar. We’re using this in combination with a special soap and anti-histamines. So far, she just looks miserable (but is feeling fine enough to pick a fight with her brother as I type this)….

Julia to Julie

Covered with swimmer's itch, Marie holds up the last of her family's bottle of Green Salve. Photo: Julie H.

You’re in Michigan and you’re on vacation? What are you doing answering my emails? Stop working and go have some fun!

Still, I’d LOVE to get some of those photos! (Terribly selfish, aren’t I?) …

She’s a cutiepie. But she does look itchy and miserable, poor thing…

I’ve never heard of swimmer’s itch before, is it a reaction to an algae or a microbe of some sort? …

I just got a bite this morning. I’m definitely going to have opportunities to try the Green Salve!

Julie to Julia

We were out and about today. Attached are a couple of spontaneous pictures from the side of the road (someone mowed smiley faces in their wildflower field – random, but awesome). They are Marie, Owen (younger), and Calvin (older). Here’s a copy and paste from my facebook post on Marie’s photo yesterday…

Well, let me tell you. I know a lot about swimmer’s itch after today. In New Jersey, it is called Duck Fleas (good to know). Technically, a parasite (I’m assuming ala guano) from a bird finds its way to a snail and then (when the water temperature in fresh water lakes reaches a certain magical level) into the pores of human skin. 1/80th of an inch the life cycle of the parasite involves boring into your skin, creating a tingling sensation. The rash reaches a head, looking a lot like chicken pox. Finding the human body unfavorable for reproduction, the parasite dies. So common, the CDC can’t be bothered with tracking or reporting cases of swimmer’s itch, it goes from family to family. No one knows where swimmer’s itch came from, but it can be traced back to Douglas Lake in Michigan. Now you know.

Critter Bite!

This bug bite itched like crazy, until I applied Motherlove Green Salve. Photo: Joe Hennager

My sample of Motherlove Green Salve arrived the very next day. And it came none too soon. I was itching. I was scratching. I was ravaging my skin. Compared to this monster of a bite, my mosquito bite was no more than a tickle.

So I eagerly opened the package from Motherlove. Though I was in a bit of a hurry to try the highly anticipated Green Salve, I decided to be a wise consumer and read the label first:

Ingredients: extra virgin olive oil*, beeswax*, comfrey*, plantain*, marshmallow root*, calendula*

* Certified Organic Ingredients

Takes the itch out of mosquito bites, soothes rashes, chapped and irritated skin. Helps to minimize scarring. Do not apply to broken skin.

External use only. Certified Cruelty Free.

Please recycle.

Excellent. And the ingredients are certified USDA Organic by Oregon Tilth, a respected name in the organic world.

So, I opened the jar and dared to sniff the salve. It had no discernible scent, which for me was good news; I’m a person who is very sensitive to perfumes, even some natural scents. If it had been heavily scented, I might not have tried it at all.

Itch-free kids are happy kids! Photo: Julie H.

Next, I touched a fingertip to the salve in the container. The compound is exceptionally light to the touch and not at all greasy. My finger picked up only the smallest trace of salve, but it was plenty to spread on my irritated skin. Though the container only holds 1 ounce, I have to believe this salve will last a very long time.

All that’s good, of course, but what about the itching?

I applied the Motherlove Green Salve in the early afternoon, and the itch stopped immediately. When I took a shower the next morning, the itching started up once more. Another quick swipe of Green Salve, and my itch went away again.

The bite is healing, and the itch is gone. So is the itch from my lingering poison ivy. Both itches eventually would have gone away by themselves, but they were active before I used the Green Salve and gone the minute I applied it.

I’m convinced it works. And I’m not going to be far from my jar of Motherlove Green Salve the rest of this summer. Like my new email friend, Julie, I’ll be keeping it in my purse for those inevitable itch emergencies.

You can purchase Motherlove products (they have an awesome assortment for pregnant moms, new moms, babies, and nursing moms) from the Motherlove website. And they’ve been developing their herbal care products for 20 years — so long that some of the babies who first benefited are moms now, too.

And there’s more good news. Motherlove donates “over 10 percent of their after-tax profits to the Nurturing Life Foundation,” which the company started five years ago. According to their website, the foundation’s two-fold mission is:

  • “To promote breastfeeding and support mothers-in-need.
  • “To create opportunities for children nationwide.”

Nurturing Life Foundation donates to organizations around the world that support their mission. You can see a list of some of the Nurturing Life Foundation recipients on their website.

The Small Print

Blue Planet Green Living received a free sample of the product described in this post. No other compensation or incentive was provided.

Blue Planet Green Living’s review policy is to only review those products we feel merit overall positive comments. If we do not like a product, we do not review it. We are not influenced by complimentary products and provide our honest opinions. For more information, please visit the Policies tab on the top navigation bar.

Blue Planet Green Living has an affiliate relationship with Amazon.com. If you purchase this product or any other products through Amazon by clicking on our affiliate link, Blue Planet Green Living will receive a small financial compensation from Amazon, which we use to sustain this website.

Julia Wasson

Blue Planet Green Living (Home Page)

Uptown Eco-Wellness Bazaar, March 21, 2009 in Dallas, TX

It is no secret that change is the only option for a healthier way of living. But in a timid economy, even the most dedicated consumers begin to ask, “How?” Several Dallas-area artists, designers, and retailers will assemble on March 21st with an answer to that question: The Uptown Eco-Wellness Bazaar. The event offers an abundance of organic, handmade, fair trade selections and services from local small business.

Uptown Eco-Wellness Bazaar, March 21, 2009, Dallas, Texas

Uptown Eco-Wellness Bazaar, March 21, 2009, Dallas, Texas

Trendsetting consumers are now more aware of the economic and environmental impact of their purchases, and they have a genuine desire to live more responsibly. Specialty retailers have the power to offer eco-friendly choices that reflect a sustainable way of life in modern society.

“The economy needs spenders while the environment needs savers,” says Crystal Carroll, owner of Hadley and Harriet. “Our shoppers are asking us to find more artistic, organic products. They want to spend money on re-purposed goods, but they don’t want boring designs.” The serendipitous relationship between these consumers and retailers produces positive change, and everyone involved is instinctively doing their part, which is naturally better for the community.

The Uptown Eco-Wellness Bazaar will highlight local designers, crafters, and small businesses boasting a unique mix of eco-friendly fashion, accessories, beauty, health, home, and wellness. Holly Price of New Harmony Boutique confirms, “This event is sure to breathe fresh air into the community.”

Experience a burst of organic selections at Uptown Wellness Bazaar  The Uptown Wellness Bazaar is an organic shopping haven, showcasing a mosaic of products from new players in the green scene. Mark your calendar and cure your “need for green” with a unique mix of fashion, accessories, beauty, and home. Take a little step toward conscious living.

Date: Saturday, March 21, 2009

Time: 10 AM to 6 PM

Location: Hadley and Harriet, 3922 Lemmon Ave, Dallas, TX 75219

Phone: 1-214-559-4440

The Uptown Eco-Wellness Bazaar will benefit the nonprofit group La Reunion TX — a future green arts residency in Oak Cliff, Texas. The event is sponsored by Smart Water.

Blue Planet Green Living (Home Page)

Supporting Organics in a Tight Economy

November 6, 2008 by  
Filed under Blog, Farms, Front Page, Organic, Organic Food

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“It turns out that when times are tough, consumers may be less interested in what type of feed a cow ate before it got chopped up for dinner, or whether carrots were grown without chemical fertilizers — particularly if those products cost twice as much as the conventional stuff.” So says Andrew Martin of The New York Times in an article dated November 1, 2008.

Consumers are experiencing sticker shock over organic fish and meat. Photo credit: Joe Hennager.

Consumers are experiencing sticker shock over organic fish and meat. Photo credit: Joe Hennager.

Martin interviewed experts from the Nielsen Company, the Hartman Group, and Information Resources, all of which are market research firms and trustworthy sources. Surely they’re right. Consumers aren’t buying much of anything these days, and what we are buying isn’t as likely to be organic, green, or natural, if the price tag is higher than other non-organic products on the shelf.

When our incomes are being squeezed by energy costs (they may be low for the moment, but you can bet they’ll rise again) or our jobs may be cut at any moment, it’s wise to be cautious about spending.

So, why should you pay extra for natural and organic  foods when your own budget is shrinking? What does it matter if organic farmers and producers go out of business when you’re facing problems of your own?

Think about it from another perspective. What happens if everyone stops purchasing organic products during this economic downturn?

No matter how much organic farmers and producers believe in what they’re doing, they may be forced to abandon their ideals and turn to more profitable methods. For all their ill effects, pesticides and herbicides help keep crop prices low. And antibiotics and hormones make meat and dairy production more profitable.

Returnable bottles can help keep organic milk prices down. Photo credit: Joe Hennager.

Returnable bottles can help keep organic milk prices down. Photo credit: Joe Hennager.

So much for healthy food without dangerous additives. And say goodbye to eggs from free range chickens. In fact, say goodbye to most things that cost more to produce because they’re better for us. The companies that can cut costs will survive, and the others — organics included — will go the way of the dodo bird.

But when the economy recovers, as it surely will, where will we find organic foods then? If the downturn lasts a long time, those products will be rare and expensive once again, because most organic producers will have given up.

If it’s truly important to you to have organic products, start looking for local producers now, while they’re still around. Visit farmers’ markets, go to an organic farm, ask at your food co-op, or find them on line. Let them know you’re willing to take the extra effort to buy from them directly, if that’s an option. Offer to provide your own egg cartons, bags, boxes, or bottles to keep the cost down. Pick your own fruit or vegetables, if they let you. Make an outing of it for your family. You’ll get the products you want at the lowest possible cost and have an adventure at the same time.

The economy is falling, and prices are going up. That doesn’t mean there are fewer chemicals in the foods that are on the shelves. No one will watch out for your health but you.

Rising prices impact every part of the organic food market. Photo credit: Joe Hennager.

Rising prices impact every part of the organic food market. Photo credit: Joe Hennager.

If you believe in the value of organic foods, support them. You, and others like you, are the only ones who will. I’m not proposing that anyone go bankrupt buying natural products. The reality is, it’s wise to be fiscally conservative if you want to ride out this dangerous dip in the economy. Yet, you may be able to afford to buy some natural or organic food products. So do that. Help at least a few organic, green, and natural companies stay in business so that they’ll be here for you — for all of us — when the economy rises once again.

But here’s the tough part. You have to decide which organics are most important to you and to the health of your family. Who needs their protection the most? Your pregnant wife? Your nursing baby? Your kids? Your elderly parents? Yourself?  The decision’s yours. Choose wisely.

Julia Wasson

Blue Planet Green Living (Home Page)

All Things Organic Conference and Trade Show

November 4, 2008 by  
Filed under 2009, Blog, Food & Drink, Illinois

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The 2009 All Things Organic™ conference and trade show will take place in Chicago, Illinois, June 16–18, 2009. All Things Organic will co-locate at the trade show with Expo Comida Latina and All Asia Food, the premier food shows for the fast-growing Hispanic and Asian markets.

Get ready to try new organic foods, learn about organic ingredients in both foods and non-foods, and learn about organic manufacturing. Informational sessions will be 90 minutes each. Product demonstrations will also be provided by a number of vendors.

“The conference aims to foster communication and information sharing across sectors and parts of the supply chain and to prepare the audience for what’s coming up on the horizon,” according to the Organic Trade Association.

All Things Organic will co-locate at the trade show with Expo Comida Latina and All Asia Food, the premier food shows for the fast-growing Hispanic and Asian markets.

Julia Wasson

Blue Planet Green Living (Home Page)