The tried and tested, unsponsored, unfiltered had-to-share, word-of-mouth ones. At Body+Soul we’re privy to new health and wellness stories, products, initiatives and trends all the time, and like you, we like sharing them with each other.
Given there are always so many new releases and activities, we wanted a place to share the ones that do more than just what’s on the label. Maybe it boosted our confidence, gave us inspiration or made us proud. Whatever it is, if we think you might like to hear about it, we’re hoping to share them with you each month in a new column we promise is free of influence.
So, from our team to you, these are the nine things that have been making us happy and are literally feeding our Body+Soul this month. We hope they’ll feed yours too!
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1. NAIDOC Week
NAIDOC Week is being celebrated from 4-11 July, with the theme ‘Heal Country’, which makes a call for stronger measures to recognise, protect and maintain all aspects of Indigenous culture and heritage, as well as the environment itself.
There are events occurring all over Australia, but in lieu of COVID some have been cancelled or postponed. Have a look at the website to see how you can get involved in a COVID-Safe way in your local area.
2. Koala Eco tea tree sanitiser
If there’s one smell that sums up the past year, it’s hand sanitiser. That pungent hits you in the back of the throat alcoholic waft that we just can’t escape. Not to mention the horrible stickiness of a coin sized amount of clear goop that is always dispensed in such unnecessary and overly generous proportions.
But recently I came across Koala Eco Natural Hand and Surface Spray in Lemon Scented Tea Tree and it smells DIVINE, in fact, it’s all I use now. Who knew hand sanitiser could smell SO good? And that a spray was was so much more pleasant to use? It includes the essential oil from one of nature’s most potent disinfectants: Tea Tree while killing 99.99% of germs in a neat little 125ml package for $10.95.
Safe, powerful, plant-based and made with Australian essential oils that are kind to your family and the environment – it ticks all the boxes for me with the added bonus of being a family-run, Australian-based company. It’s also much easier to spray my toddler’s hands while on the run.
Koala Eco also makes a range of natural, plant-based household and hand and body cleansers. Now, if only they had a candle to aromatise my whole house in this divine sanitiser please.
3. Doctor Mike’s no BS YouTube channel
OK OK. The guy has over 7 million subscribers on YouTube, I’m clearly late to this party, but I first came across Doctor Mike in the Harper’s Bazaar video series ‘Go to bed with…’ where notable people share their nighttime routines. My favourite comment: “It’s the end of the video and I’m still not in bed with Dr. Mike…” Girl. Same.
First of all, yes, he’s a real doctor. A practising family medicine doctor in New York (which is like our GP), Doctor Mike debunks medical and health misinformation, shares weird and interesting facts about the human body, and has been particularly vocal, yet approachable, when it comes to vaccines. You just gotta love no BS medical advice from someone who’s ACTUALLY qualified.
4. Video games as therapy
I’m the first to admit to my nerdom, given that I review video games for news.com.au. But over the course of the pandemic, I’ve begun to realise the real healing benefits of video games. Some people Netflix and chill, others meditate, but for me, getting lost in the narrative of a video game or solving puzzles to a relaxing soundtrack have become a form of meditation (big shout out to LEGO’s Builder’s Journey, which combines beautiful, blocky visuals with its calming soundscape and puzzle solving). Seriously, if you’re in one of the seven Australian cities currently in lockdown, I urge you to stray into the world of video games. You might surprise yourself.
5. Magic in a bottle
Having sensitive skin, I’ve avoided Vitamin C and Retinols for a number of years, because every time I get bold and decide to try one out, my skin freaks out. I know I’m not alone in that. I’ve looked high and low for an answer and let’s just say the Aesthetics Rx A Serum Retinol Restorative is magic in a bottle to me. It has Retinol (Vitamin A), ceramides, hyaluronic acid and tocopherol (Vitamin E), all of which are helpful to target signs of ageing. It’s got a lovely, yet natural scent and feels so smoothing and hydrating on the skin. I’ve been using it for about three months now and the complements on my skin without makeup have been flooding in. If you’ve been too scared to try a Retinol, or are looking for one with conscious credentials, try this one out.
6. Learning to sew
Recently my mum has been teaching me to sew. And you know what was better than learning how to hem my own pants? Asking her to teach me. She was so thrilled!
Sewing has almost become a dying skill that is being lost through the generations given clothing is so cheap and accessible now. With T-shirts costing less than lunch does and fast fashion retailers selling clothes constantly on sale, it’s almost easier to throw something away rather than sit down and repair it.
I was embarrassed that I didn’t even know how to sew a button until I moved out of home and to this day I still take my clothes to a seamstress (or my mum!) to take up rather than do it myself. Learning a new skill makes me feel great, and spending time with my mum is a bonus. Sew good.
7. Learning guitar
Finding myself in lockdown once again, I’m so grateful for the guitar I got off Facebook marketplace for just $50 (although maybe my neighbours aren’t as I’m only learning). There’s so many on there for a super cheap price and it’s a great way to pass the time. If you’re looking for something you can do on your own, that uses your brain and that you can get better at quickly (essential for all of us who love succeeding at things) guitar should be your go to.
Try to learn a couple of chords (I’d recommend easy ones like C, G, F (not the bar chord one), Am, and D) and you’ll be able to play a lot of your favourite songs – including Hallelujah and a lot of Taylor Swift. When in doubt, consult a YouTube tutorial for some COVID-Safe tuition. There’s nothing like screaming out the lyrics to an angst-ridden T-Swizzle song to ease your lockdown woes.
8. Leggings with big pockets
Recently, I wrote about leggings with big pockets and for anyone that missed that story, this is another plug, because finding myself in lockdown again and going on more iso walks and runs, they’re just the best.
This Nimble pair here in a gorgeous Sea Turtle print is a recent fave and have been on high rotation in my wardrobe the past few weeks. Not only do they hold my huge iPhone after years of frustration that leggings don’t have big enough pockets to literally hold the phone, but $1 from every Sea Turtle print product sold is donated to the Seabin Project, who do incredible things reducing plastic in our oceans, it’s a win-win.
The Seabin Project, an Aussie company started in 2015 by two Aussie surfers with a passion for the ocean and protecting the environment, has already collected and removed over two million kilos of rubbish from the ocean around the world. Go you good things.
9. Oil Masks
After my hair got cut WAY too short a few months back, I’ve been on a mission to grow it back even healthier than it was before. From dressing gown heatless curls to sulphate-free shampoo, I’ve been doing everything I can to keep my hair in good shape. Having low porosity hair means that it’s hard for me to get moisture to actually soak into my hair, it kind of just sits on the outside and looks greasy.
Enter oil masks, the key to dry, straw-looking ends, which I learnt from this amazing Insta account. I lather a cr*p-tonne of hair oil (Moroccan, Argan or Jojoba preferably and definitely not coconut) onto the ends of my hair and leave it to soak for half an hour (or more if I have time) before washing my hair. My hair is much more manageable, less-brittle, easy to brush and has a beautiful shine to it since I’ve started this new routine. It’s so easy to do – so why not give it a go? My go-tos for a pre-mask are the Moroccan Oil Treatment Original, Davroe Argan Oil and Moroccan Oil Glimmer Shine Spray for when I style it.