Best In Balms

Enjoy the feeling of having nourished your body, mind, and spirit and carry that with you throughout your day with these extraordinary wellness beauty balms from founder-driven indie beauty brands that lean clean and embody integrity, passion and spirit. Companies that tell a story, and care about ingredients, product purity, efficacy, and artisanship. Balms made with love and plant powered ingredients used for physical and psychological wellbeing since the beginning of time, recommended by The Artful Blog to incorporate into your daily self-care rituals. For seasonal support, healthy skin, peace of mind, and scentsational aromatherapy head to toe. Miracle worker balms = the bomb gift for self, mindful minimalist and health & healing enthusiast on the list!

Black Hills Honey Farm Peppermint Lavender & Arnica Bee Balm 

 Black Hills Honey Farm is a fully integrated sustainable Beekeeping operation crafting natural personal care “Products From The Hive” developed to protect, soothe & heal. They seek to define the best practices for natural beekeeping with the secondary focus on the agricultural products of apiculture (honey, pollen & propolis).  All products are 100% natural with no synthetic fragrances, isopropyl alcohol, benzene, mineral oil, sodium lareth sulfate, propylene glycol, or aluminum. The Peppermint & Lavender Temple Rub, a personal favorite, with honey & essential oil blend of Lavender, Chamomile, Peppermint, Rosemary, Lemongrass, Sweet Orange, Bergamot & Grapefruit, is a headache sufferer’s must-have for alleviating aroma-therapeutic relief & the warmingly wonderful Arnica & Ginger Arthritus Rub is their best-selling product for good reason. The Bees Knees balms.

Badger Sleep Balm & Sore Joint Rub & Artwork

Badger is a small, family-owned, family-run & family-friendly company nestled in the woods of New Hampshire that began making their signature healing balm back in 1995. Now 20+ years later, still going strong, the beloved by New Englanders and beyond brand has blossomed into a full line of 100 high-quality products known for its distinctly artful tins. Badger blends the finest organic ingredients to make safe products to calm, heal, protect & treat your body. They also keep a careful eye on the environment by sourcing only ecologically harvested, wild-crafted & fairly traded ingredients. As a Certified Organic company, most products are clean enough to eat. The entire line is playful, purposeful & powerful. Personal picks: Badger’s Lavender & Bergamot Sleep Balm & Arnica Blend Sore Joint Rub. Balms for all reasons.

Botanical Therapy Antidepressant & Headache Balm

Botanical Therapy was born from a life-long love and respect for nature. Products are handcrafted by founder Michelle Jefferson, a Native-American Master Clinical Aromatherapist who honors the plants, the customer, and the research & wisdom of those who came before us. Collection includes 36 made-to-order customizable & effective adult through kid-safe personal care medicinal quality synergy balms imbued with healing energy. With care, botanical ingredients, Bergamot, Grapefruit & Lavender historically used for stimulating cheer and contentment are combined with shea butter & beeswax to create an uplifting Antidepressant Balm, and Frankincense, Lavender & Peppermint, used for reducing pain & swelling, soothing nerves, alleviating tension & creating a sedating effect, form a marvelous Headache & Migraine Balm. Excellent carry-with-you for efficacious relief on-the-go balm.

Rain Bee Essential Remedies Balm

Rain is a curated line of responsibly handmade products using natural ingredients with African origins designed to reveal and enhance the true inner beauty of your body, mind, and spirit. Indigenous plants used since antiquity by African healers are the heart and soul of the Rain range. Extracts & oils from Kalahari melons, Mongongo nuts, Marula fruit, Mafura seeds, the pods of the giant Baobab and the delicate fynbos of the Cape Floral Kingdom, all packed with antioxidants, moisturizers & nutrients to protect & replenish your skin. Rain’s Bee Essential Remedies harness the active properties of honey & beeswax in spa style treatments which deliver tangible results. Bee Essential Heel Balm & Sleep Balm slow-beauty remedies are must-haves for carving a few moments out of each day to practice mindful self-care & wellness. Balms created with love & care for craftspeople & the planet.

Rosebud Perfume Co. Rose Mandarin & Brambleberry Balm 

Founded in 1892 the now iconic family-run Rosebud Perfume Company set out with a simple mission: To provide simple, multi-usage products that are both affordable & effective. In addition to the world-famous, cult-favorite Rosebud Salve that boasts to be the cure-all for a wide array of skin ailments, notable are the newest offerings: Rose Mandarin & Brambleberry Rose Balm which can be used as both lip & body balm, or experienced as a sensuous perfume applied to pulse points. Housed in vintage inspired tins, these balms are brimming with a Balsam of fragrant essential oils & botanicals that embraces the skin/lips. Stress-reducing flavors of Mandarin Orange, Vintage Rose, Nostalgic Berry, overtones of honey & vanilla, moisturized with shea butter & vitamin E. Sweet giftable & covetable balm.

Sundãri Makeup Remover Balm & Skinveda Saffron-Dhatelo Balm 

Ayurveda, acknowledged as the oldest medical science in India, is a 5000 year old science of life advocating a methodology that seeks to establish ones holistic balance. Ayurveda teaches that the balancing of mind, body and spirit will ultimately lead to peace, harmony and lasting beauty. Inspired by Ayurvedic wisdom Sundãri & Skinveda skincare lines embody the principles of this Indian philosophy with balanced formulations that utilize the powerful regenerative properties of plants, herbs, roots, essential oils & floral extracts to harmonize and normalize skin conditions & imbalances. Sundãri’s Makeup Remover Balm & Skinveda’s Saffron-Dhatelo Lip Restoring Balm are nourishing & therapeutic precious seed oil drenched Ylang Ylang & Sandalwood scented sublimely divine nighttime skin-loving indulgences. Science meets nature through ancient wisdom balm.

Yoga Balm & Bayan Botanicals Beauty Balm

Ayurveda is based on the premise that the universe is made up of five elements: air, fire, water, earth & ether, represented in humans by three “doshas” or energies: Vata, Pitta & Kapha. When any of the doshas accumulate in the body, balance is lost. Health & wellbeing depends on right balance of the three doshas = tridoshas. The term Yoga itself means to unite, combine, harmonize, or integrate. A yogic approach is inherently an integrative approach, harmonizing body, prana, senses, mind & consciousness. Yoga & Ayurveda are two interrelated branches of the same great tree of Vedic knowledge. Support your practice with joyously handcrafted in small batches Yoga Balmfairly traded sustainable, elevated combination of seven powerful healing oils join to detoxify, promote cell growth, reduce inflammation & improve blood flow with progression toward long-term holistic wellness. Excellent before & after yoga practice & for use with healing arts clients. Also recommended are industry leader Banyan Botanicals 6 Ayurvedic balms. Award-winning Beauty Balm, with Shatavari, Ashwagandha & Rose Geranium is an essentially does everything & more scentsationally balm.

Waxing Kara Sweet Lips & Sweet Body Balm

What began as artisan Kara Brook’s quest for beeswax, years later resulted in a small but mighty company Waxing Kara, a multi-dimensional “Honey House” with a full line of charming & elegantly packaged products with a mission to craft beautiful & functional handmade goods in a sustainable way using natural ingredients thanks to bees. Waxing Kara honey products are now sold in over 250 stores across the US, including Anthropologie, West Elm Local & Uncommon Goods. So in love with the conditioning Honey Lip Balm & Sweet Body Balm -right-sized solid balm made from organic ingredients including honey, coconut oil, beeswax, shea butter & essential oils to provide a rich & benefical treat for the skin. Find daily peace with this group of finely tuned aromatherapy essential oil blends formulated to recharge your body mind & spirit: Blossoms & Bourbon, Peace of Mind, Good Fortune & Strength. For wonderful results, apply liberally to palms, rub hands together & inhale deeply. Bee-inspired balm.

Indigo Elixirs Balms & Prismologie Rose Quartz & Rose Balm

Interested in an exquisitely unique balm that leans toward the miraculous, magical, & maybe a little mysterious? Indigo Elixirs & Prismologie have you covered. Crafted by herbalist & natural perfumer Deanna Rose in her Manoa jungle apothecary, Indigo Elixirs are healing medicines for skin & soul. As part of your dream ritual discover Lucid Dream Balm, a hydrating & calming balm to apply specifically to the third eye, temples, under the nose & on your neck, before you go to sleep, that contains occult & medicinal plants like Mugwort, which has an ancient reputation for bringing clarity, lucidity & premonition to our dreams, and Sandalwood to calm the third eye. Also features a center of Neon Green Big-Island grown & distilled Vetiver essential oil, for grounding the entire being. Handcrafted with love & plants mythic medicine balm.

Prismologie, created by a dynamic Kuwaiti mother-daughter team, is an innovative bespoke mood-enhancing multi-sensory gemstones & enriching fragrances body care range that harnesses the transformative power of 6 distinctive colors: White for Clarity, Yellow for Confidence, Pink for Comfort, Green for Serenity, Red for Vigour & Indigo for Stillness. Diamonds, Citrines, Rose Quartz, Jades, Rubies & Sapphires are crushed into the formulas for their wellbeing properties. Used on your declouge –close to the heart chakra, the Rose Quartz & Rose Body Comforting Body Balm, with its cream-to-powder texture, restorative & heavenly Artic Rose scent + subtle shimmer, leaves the skin softly kissed with light & love. Elemental healing balm.

Autumn Aura

 Maple Leaf Graham Cookies. The air is crisp, the leaves are turning and festive, and cozy country kitchen aromas are emanating from every open window -it’s an Autumn afternoon in New England! From apple-cinnamon to mulled-cider and woodsy-pine to pumpkin-spice and everything nice, this is the most aromatic and flavorful time of the year. Sweet & spicy seasonal treats & tea + scents = Recipe For Fall!

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup raw sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice
  • 3 Tbsp honey
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp pure maple extract
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil

The Artful Blog’s favorite wellness teas company with roots that go back to a third generation herbalist named Rosemary Gladstar, has a stellar new tea offering: Organic Tumeric with Meadowsweet & Ginger. Traditional Medicinals artfully blends turmeric, a root praised by healers around the world, with the power of meadowsweet & ginger’s warming properties for an herbal trifecta of ancient wisdom and soothing relief. Perfect Autumn afternoon tea time treat with Maple Leaf Grahams.

Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  • Place all your dry ingredients in the bowl of your mixer & combine. Add all of the wet ingredients & mix until everything comes together. Add about 1-2 tablespoons of water if needed -depending on dough consistency.
  • Divide the dough in half and roll half out on a floured surface until about 1/4 inch thick. Use Fall inspired cookie cutters, cut out shapes. Transfer the cookies on a parchment-paper-lined cookie sheet, poke them with a fork few times, and bake for 10-12 minutes until the edges just slightly darken. They will harden as they cool. Store in an air tight container.
  • While cookies are baking brew Traditional Medicinals Stress Ease Cinnamon Tea. Serve. Savor!

DIY Autumn Essential Oil Diffuser Blends. No worries if you’re not culinary inclined, you can still let the scents of golden Fall fill your senses and home with these warm earthy & aromatic body mind soul diffuser blends -Pumpkin Spice Latte, Mulled Cider, Autumn Afternoon, Fireside and Walk in the Woods. Diffusing is a stylish and beneficial way to instantly transport the best parts of Autumn to your indoor living space, and create sublime year-round seasonal spa-like magic with essential oils. Best in therapeutic-grade essential oil brands at various price points recommended by The Artful Blog to consider when crafting your blends: Young Living Essential Oils, Aura Cacia, dōTERRA, Edens GardenFloracopeia, & Rocky Mountain Oils. Just Breathe!

For More Naturally Scentsational Autumn Ambiance See Previous Post: Scents & Sensibilities.

Golden Petals

Garden Harvest Calendula Officinalis 

Calendula Officinalis is a beautiful golden hued flower with an earthy aromatic that is well-known throughout the world as a powerful healing plant. Its benefits have been used for thousands of years for myriad medicinal applications. It grows easily in most climates and generously blooms brightly Spring to Autumn often reseeding itself, returning again every year. Besides offering beauty wherever it grows, Calendula is multi-use must-have plant most herbalists would recommend growing yourself. This year The Artful Blog planted a ‘Organic Mix Calendula Seed’ from the Hudson Valley Seed Company with a wide range of colors, from almost Cream to Bright Yellow to a Cool Peach color to the classic Vibrant Orange.

 

Homegrown & Handcrafted Calendula Mist Plant Milk

Because Calendula is antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic, it is often grown to make healing and skin soothing salves. According to Witchipedia Calendula symbolizes love and constancy and is great for wedding bouquets and decorations. It is the traditional “he loves me, he loves me not” flower and is useful for love potions, making wreaths to keep evil and negativity away, and the flower’s petals are also a good addition when creating dream pillows. This season, The Artful Blog decided to craft a batch of Plant Milk with these healing flowers. This Do-It-Yourself mist with anti-inflammatory Calendula and oats, leaves skin feeling soft, hydrated and calm. Great for skin in times of stress and transition. Making a botanical salve or mist is a wonderful way to take the herbaceous flowers that you can grow in your backyard and easily turn them into something beneficial to use year round. Now that’s sustainable!

Ingredients:

1 ounce dried calendula flowers
½ cup oats
8 ounce distilled water
4 ounce bottle with spray atomizer

Directions:

Combine the Calendula and Oats in a French press. In a small pan, bring distilled water to boil and pour distilled water over Calendula Flowers and Oats. Let steep for 10 minutes, plunge and let cool. Pour into a bottle and cap with spray atomizer. Spritz face liberally. Keep in refrigerator for added soothing benefits. Enjoy your handcrafted home-spa remedy!

Wellness Benefits Of Calendula’s Medicinal Properties 

You can purchase dried Calendula flowers from American herbal distribution retailer Mountain Rose Herbs if you don’t have any to dry yourself, and depending on where you live and shop, you might find them in the bulk section of your local natural grocery store. If you’d like to learn more about herbs and the healing power of plants, highly recommend taking a course from the New England-based Herbal Academy -the best in online herbal education.

Shades Of Fall

Delicious Autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive Autumns. ~George Eliot

Fall Whisper, Illustration, Courtesy and © Dante Lividini 2017

Illustration ‘Fall Whisper’ From The Wisetrees Series By The Artful Blog’s Favorite Artist Illustrator Dante Lividini. Beautiful new tribute piece inspired by the seasonal sights and sounds of Fall and our magical little property. A wonderful world of nature spirits botanical beauties & forest family friends full of whimsy wit wisdom & wonder.

Autumnal Equinox Blessings! ‘Tis the season that gets us thinking about trees and tuning into the beauty of the landscape that surrounds us. Equinox is the point when the Sun crosses the equator and everywhere on Earth day and night are approximately of equal length. Symbolically, it can be viewed as the point when day meets night, where opposites meet on equal ground, where we can integrate the duality within the oneness of existence. The ancients, who knew themselves to be at one with the Earth, honored these planetary shifts as important reflections of life. As above so below, As within, so without.

Illustrations (shown here & below) from Chapter One: Raven The Maker -An Inuit Myth, Chapter Seven: Ilmatar The Goddess Of Air -A Finno-Ugric Myth, Chapter Two: Tepu And Gucumatz -A Mayan Myth, Chapter Four: Nyambe The Creator -A Lozi Myth & Chapter Five: Ymir The Frost Giant -A Norse Myth.

From the newly published graphic novel Dawn of Time: Creation Myths Around The World, (Author) Nel Yomtov, (Illustrator) Dante Lividini, Capstone Press, 2017. Part of a Graphic Library series: Universal Myths

Forests play a prominent role in many myths and legends. In these dark, mysterious places, heroes can lose their way, face unexpected challenges, and stumble on hidden secrets. Part of the age-old magic of forests lies in the ideas that people have had about trees. In mythology from around the world, trees appear as ladders between worlds, as sources of life and wisdom, and as the physical forms of supernatural beings -nature spirits were thought to inhabit trees and forests. The mythology of early India, preserved in texts called the Upanishads, includes a cosmic tree called ‘Asvattha.’ It is the living universe, an aspect of ‘Brahman,’ the World Spirit. This cosmic tree reverses the usual order. Its roots are in the sky, and its branches grow downward to cover the earth.

Dawn of Time gathers seven ancient multicultural creation stories from various traditions around the world so readers can discover the unique differences and similarities between the cycles and seasons of life within world mythology -all recreated in artful graphic novel format Dante Lividini style.

About

Dante Lividini is a New England-based illustrator, graphic novelist and 3-D animation artist whose work, constructed with considerable imaginative care, invites a mythological journey. With a Master’s Degree in Literature from New York University, and a background in teaching and contemplative arts, Dante cleverly weaves the art of storytelling of all that is mysterious and miraculous in the natural world throughout his work, infusing it with meaning, depth, and metaphor.

Dante’s evocative ‘Wisetree’ illustrations are all deeply rooted in nature and myth. Prompting a rare kind of empathy towards his subjects, thoughtful connections between rustic gods & nature spirits, half-humans & heroes, biosphere & biophilia, trees & time, and the realms above and below human experience, blossom. We discover an unfolding meditation on those existential dilemmas that surround us all, and a world of its own in the making. Resonating otherworldliness and sublime beauty. Presently, he is completing another graphic novel project, and works for the award-winning visual effects studio FuseFX in NYC.

For More Autumn Inspiration & Magical Wisetree Artwork By Dante See Previous Post: Autumn Always