Joyous Health: Eat & Live Well without Dieting- Giveaway (Closed)

Congrats to the winner of the Joyous Health giveaway (you have been emailed 😉 )! I am so overjoyed (no pun intended) and thankful for all of your responses! You have truly impressed me with your daily healthy habits and have even inspired me to try some new things! Much Love, xx

Hi Beauties!

I have a very special post for you this week and it involves someone whose work I have admired for quite some time: Toronto-based Holistic Nutritionist, Joy McCarthy. Joy has just launched her new book called, Joyous Health: Eat & Live Well without Dieting and I am so excited to share it with you!

New book by Joy McCarthy, CNP, RNCP

New book by Joy McCarthy, CNP, RNCP

I usually write about all sorts of products and concoctions for beautiful, radiant skin, but I would be lying if I said that you can get beautiful skin without a good diet. No number of lotions and potions will aid your skin if you are putting junk into your body.

Joy’s Eat & Live Well without Dieting lifestyle is a fantastic one, and is truly sustainable (I ranted about my need for sustainable systems last week!). It will teach you how to think about food in a whole new light (diet free!). The seven chapter book is divided into two sections: practical tips for a healthy lifestyle, and recipes. The first half is a very thorough, yet easy- to- read background on what a ‘Joyous’ lifestyle encompasses, covering topics such as food & supplements for mood, getting your digestion on track, and habits to live a healthy & balanced life. The second half offers eighty recipes that you can start incorporating into your daily routine.

The book is designed for a six week lifestyle makeover; working through each chapter and making at least one positive change a week.

“Your skin completely renews itself every twenty-eight days. Therefore, food is literally the raw materials from which we create new cells.”

Joyous habits that I have adopted making me glow from the inside out:

  1. Drinking lemon & water every morning: One half of freshly squeezed lemon in warm water first thing in the morning is extremely detoxifying and will get your digestive system going.
  2. Increasing my veggie intake by 1000% 🙂 (or by a lot): I aim to have at least two meals per day with half of my plate full of vegetable so that I get a great dose of minerals and vitamins, as well as keep my blood sugar balanced.
  3. Eating more superfoods: There is a reason everyone is talking about these. Superfoods are jam packed with nutrients, so why not incorporate them into our daily diets? I love adding spirulina, maca, chia, kale, or raw cacao into my daily smoothies. Joy puts it in a good way; why take a multivitamin, when you can just drink one instead?

“A healthy glow is a result of a detoxified body.”

I have tried a number of recipes from Joy’s book, but one of my favorites is the Chewy Almond Butter Cookies. Sugar has always been my kryptonite (as I am sure it is for many), but it also wreaks havoc on the body and as a result, the skin! These cookies are perfect for the afternoon slump when you find yourself reaching for that chocolate bar.

Chewy Almond Butter Cookies, p. 219

Chewy Almond Butter Cookies, p. 219

Joy’s book is currently available in Canada at stores and online, and will be available in the U.S. soon (currently available for pre-order). I wanted to spread the joyous love and share a copy with one lucky reader! Just follow the instructions below for your chance to win this inspiring book!

In the comment section below, answer the following question: “What healthy habits have you incorporated into your daily routine to make your skin glow?”

  • Contest closes February 10, 2014, one winner will be chosen at random on February 11th.
  • All Canadian and U.S. residents eligible to enter.

Make sure to share this post on Twitter and Facebook to get everyone inspired to eat well and live well!

– Seanna

Winter DIY Survival Kit

We have officially hit the middle of winter which means that I’m desperate for some remedies to get me through the next few months. Here are some of my homemade potions that will keep you hydrated and pampered all the way to spring.

Jasmine and Vanilla Whipped Body Cream
Recipe type: Body
  • 2 oz mango butter
  • 1.5 oz cocoa butter
  • 1.5 oz apricot kernel oil
  • 0.5 oz beeswax
  • 0.5 oz vegetable glycerin
  • 5 drops jasmine essential oil
  • 5 drops vanilla essential oil
  1. Using a double boiler, melt mango butter, cocoa butter, and beeswax together.
  2. Once melted, take off of heat, add apricot kernel oil, vegetable glycerine and essential oils.
  3. Let cool until a crust starts to form on top of the oil mixture (the oils must be partially solid before the next step).
  4. Using a standing or hand mixer, whip on high until it reaches a stiff peak (this may take up to 5-7 minutes).
  5. Scoop into sterile jars* and store in a cool spot.
*Sterilizing containers and utensils before making natural and preservative- free products helps reduce the growth of bacteria.

Before you slather on your newly made body cream, try this first:

Mix 1/4 cup coconut oil, 2-3 tsp sweet almond oil, 1/4 cup of brown sugar and a dash of ground cinnamon*. Use this heavenly- scented, energizing scrub in the shower and follow up with a generous amount of body butter.

*Cinnamon applied topically to the skin is known to stimulate blood flow, increase circulation and has antiseptic properties. For those with overly sensitive skin, skip the cinnamon or test before to ensure that your skin does not react.

Sweet Mint Lip Butter
Recipe type: Lip
  • 2 oz coconut oil
  • 1 oz beeswax
  • 1 oz sweet almond oil
  • 1 oz raw honey (note: liquid pasteurized honey does not substitute well)
  • 5-10 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 3-4 drops of vitamin E oil
  1. Using a double boiler (I like to use a glass measuring cup over a small pot), melt coconut oil and beeswax together.
  2. Once melted, take off of heat, add sweet almond oil, vitamin E and and peppermint essential oil.
  3. Whisk in raw honey.
  4. Set bowl onto an ice pack or in a bowl of ice cubes* and whisk until mixture begins to cool (it will thicken and the colour will lighten).
  5. Once the mixture has cooled so that it is thick, but still pourable, pour into sterilized lip balm tins.
*The raw honey even when melted maintains a different consistency than the oil and beeswax mixture. In order to ensure the honey and oils do not separate in your lip balm container, cooling and whisking is necessary for a uniform consistency.

Before you slather on your newly made lip butter, try this first:

Mix 1/4 tsp of coconut oil with 1/4 tsp of sugar. Rub generously onto lips and wipe off with a tissue. Follow up with an ample amount of lip butter. Your lips will thank you. . . and so will your loved one(s)!

Now. . . only 60 more days until spring. . . but who’s counting.

Best Skincare Finds of 2012

n122701942_33013279_9053 As 2012 comes to a close I cannot help but reflect on the past year and the new things it has brought. Most notably, for me is my full emersion into the world of natural beauty. The change started slowly. At first I began to explore natural solutions because of specific skin woes; always fighting off dry, uneven skin, and acne break-outs that would last for weeks. I began reading about the science of skin, ingredients in commercial cosmetics, and most importantly, plants and oils that have been used in skin remedies for centuries. As I learned more, and tested even more, I could not argue with the outstanding results from using pure and natural products on my skin.

In the spirit of giving, I want to share with you my top three skincare finds of 2012.

Pure + Simple Spa Facials

I have always enjoyed treating myself to an indulgent facial now and again. I sometimes place these facial sessions in the same category as dental cleanings and doctor check- ups (note: I realize for some that this sounds like hell on earth). The reason I say this is because to me a good facial is a combination of a really deep clean and a check- up to ensure that everything is on the right track to take me into my later years. I need to trust my esthetician, so it goes without saying that I have high standards when it comes to the spa that I choose.


Pure + Simple is just that; a spa that I can trust. Each facial is customized to your skin needs and the natural organic products that they use (which includes their own Pure + Simple line) are extremely gentle and nourishing. I can credit Pure + Simple to changing my perspective on skin health; realizing that hydration is the key to almost all skin ailments from acne to rosacea. Their promotion of facial oils and floral hydrosols have revolutionized my skin care routine– which is why they have made it to my top finds for 2012!

Facial Oils

In the same vein, facial oils have revolutionized my skincare regime and have changed my perception on how to treat various skin afflictions. I have believed many things promoted by commercial products, such as ‘moisturizers must be oil free to prevent clogged pores’, and ‘acne must be fought with harsh drying ingredients’. In reality pure natural oils can protect and actually help skin inflammation like acne which can be triggered by dry skin.



My favourite oil to use is rosehip, which is extracted from the seeds of rose bushes grown in the Chilean mountains. It is truly a multivitamin for your face. High in fatty acids, vitamin A and C, it is amazing for skin regeneration, pigmentation, and inflammation. I use organic, cold pressed rosehip seed oil by Skin Essence Organics. I use it both day and night immediately after cleansing and let it absorb for five minutes before I put on a moisturizer. Since I began using it, my skin’s texture and colour has significantly improved, and my skin stays supple and glowing!

Éminence Organics Tinted Moisturizer


Last, but not least, Éminence Tinted Moisturizer. I was searching for a product that would give me a dewy look without the cakiness of a heavy foundation. Éminence Tinted Moisturizer is the perfect solution. The texture is silky smooth and highly moisturizing, depositing just enough colour to even out my skin tone. Bonus- it also contains SPF 25 .

I wear it in Vanilla Latte which is the lightest shade and it is perfect for my fair skin. Depending on the day (or season) I wear it alone or with concealer and a little blush. For an added glow I wear it with an illuminator like Ilia’s Polka Dots & Moonbeams.

There you have it, my top three finds of 2012. I can definitely say that coming out of this year my skin is certainly happier and more radiant than it was going in! I am looking forward to what 2013 brings, and you can guarantee I will share it all with you!

What were your favourite finds of 2012?