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MNDFL Beauty December 6, TORONTO!

MNDFL Beauty is a brand discovery and shopping event featuring the most awesome Green Beauty brands that Canada has to offer, hosted by Graydon Skincare!

Not just a shopping event, this is a truly unique opportunity to meet brand founders in person, and ask them your burning skincare questions! This year there will be over 30+ INCREDIBLE beauty and wellness brands!

Mark your calendars now! FREE ADMISSION!

Thursday, December 6 from 3:30 pm to 6 pm

The Jam Factory

2 Matilda Street

Toronto, ON

We are also hosting an evening VIP Cocktail Party!

As you get cozy with brand owners and do a little shopping, you will receive a premium swag bag full of goodies (over $100 value!!) and sip on a complimentary green cocktail provided by Greenhouse Juice Co! Tickets are on our Eventbrite page.

We have some incredible brands to shop from, including:
kaia naturals, Living Libations, Basd body care, Schaf Skincare, Wildcraft Care, Province Apothecary, Sahajan Skincare, Zyderma HS, Pura Botanicals, Aromacentric, Sappho New Paradigm, Helena Lane Skincare, Clean Kiss Organics, East Coast Glow, Shoosha Truly Organic, Étymologie Skin Care, Suncoat, Anointment Natural Skin Care, Plume Science, The Andrea Olivera Centre for Ayurveda, Iremia Skincare, Buck Naked Soap Company, Muni Muni Skin Care, boosh, Merben International, and more!!

This is the perfect time to do your holiday shopping, and stock up on gifts that aren’t only beautiful to look at, but clean, natural, and so good-for-you.

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How did Anointment transform from soap to a best-selling New Mom & Baby skin care line?

Anointment Original Branding

Anointment began as a stall in the Halifax Brewery Farmers’ Market in 2002. Selling bar soap, Anointment did brisk business with customers who came weekly to buy multiple bars of soap packaged simply in hand-stamped paper bags secured with twine. Herbal baby products were a side idea for a booming soap business. Fifteen years later, the tables have turned and soap is now a smaller focus for a business known more for its New Mom & Baby products. How did that happen?

Anointment left the Farmers’ Market in 2008. After a brief hiatus and a change of ownership, Anointment re-emerged at a Halifax natural parenting store then owned by new Anointment owner April MacKinnon where local customers were relieved to find their beloved bar soap. For the next few years, soap remained the top selling category.

In 2011, after relocating from Halifax, NS to Sackville, NB and the birth of her third child, April worked with a handful of local families to provide postpartum doula support until her own family obligations forced a re-prioritization. April was also struggling to find direction for Anointment. One day, while having a lengthy telephone conversation with a fellow baby industry business owner, it was suggested that Baby Balm be submitted for a PTPA Media Award for best new product – and Baby Balm received that award! The lightbulb went on! What if Anointment New Mom & Baby products could embody the postpartum support of a doula in the products themselves? What might that look like?

It started with product formulations. Every ingredient was scrutinized and evaluated. Parents have a lot on their plate, it’s important that Anointment create products with intentional ingredients and product formulations that are pure, simple, and effective. We made changes, we found new suppliers with organic certifications.

We continued with packaging and new label designs. How could we impart a welcoming, supportive feeling into our packaging? We went through several iterations of designs, including lighthouses, whales and other Maritime imagery before bringing it really close to home: using the designs pressed into the doorknobs of the century Farmhouse I call home with my family. It fit like a perfectly warm hug.

That was just the beginning. As interest and product love grew, so did our New Mom & Baby line. We added more products to support moms in the immediate days postpartum when our body and spirit are raw. We tucked well wishes into the flaps of boxes, recipes into the insides of gift sets. Adding the intangible into a tangible item.

Anointment continues to grow and evolve, but today, our New Mom & Baby Line continues to be our best-selling line of products, and we couldn’t be more proud!

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Red, White and GREEN – terra20

Lemon Lip Balm - Summer's perfect flavour!

We’ve been working with Ottawa-based retailer terra20 for just under a year. This incredible store lives in the vacated premises of the original IKEA store at the Pinecrest Shopping Centre and despite its impressive square footage has a cozy and friendly feel. In February I made a visit to wintery Ottawa to host an in-store event with them and had a great time meeting customers face-to-face, checking out the store and speaking with the amazing staff! I’m thrilled to see they love Anointment as much as we love them! Have a look at their blog post!

One minor detail: We’re no longer located in Halifax, Nova Scotia but in beautiful Sackville, New Brunswick on the Tantramar Marshes.

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What IS an Om Shanti, anyway?

Om Shanti Soap

Om Shanti. Our most popular soap with a sweet, intoxicating smell combining pure cinnamon and patchouli essential oils with the decadence of certified organic and fairly traded coffee grounds and cocoa powder. It holds its scent forever and I’m told it can be habit forming. Case in point: people present themselves to me at craft fairs and my Farmer’s Market booth with their remaining slivers in a baggie so they can ‘compare’ scents and get the right soap when they’ve forgotten the name.

A question I get asked a lot is “what is Om Shanti?” My lovely mother-in-law (also an Om Shanti lover) refers to it as “Chianti“, but that’s a type of wine. Not the same thing.

The “Om” is a meditation sound used in yoga practice and many Eastern religions including Hinduism and Buddhism. Om Shanti is a phrase that means “to bring peace”.

Patchouli essential oil is derived from a member of the mint family grown in India. Its earthy scent is often associated with the 1960s – the decade of swamis and enlightenment. Cinnamon is also grown in India and Sri Lanka, making Om Shanti soap heavily influenced by Indian traditions.

The Om symbol is popular in jewelry, clothing, and accessories – and of course, our soap!

Om in the world

1. Om Belt Buckle, Pip Robins
2. Keep Calm and Carry Om, adropofgoldensun
3. Om Mug, ThrowingShop
4. Om Necklace, Perini Designs

Ironically, the t-shirt I reserved for my Grade 10 Phys. Ed. class had a beautiful blue and purple Om symbol embroidered on it. As a 15-year-old, I had no idea what it meant but looking back, perhaps I hoped I could be at peace with my lack of basketball skills.

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Anointment + Bummis = A Match Made in Heaven


:: A photo of April, Owner of Anointment and Jolyn, Owner of Nurtured at the Toronto Kid Show January 2013.

Bummis and Anointment have entered into a fantastic partnership – beginning this year Anointment Baby Balm samples will be included in every Organic Cotton Diaper Kit and BeautifulBASIC Cloth Diaper Kit distributed in North America. We are SO THRILLED about this partnership, and we wanted to share with you a little blog post written by Betsy, co-owner of Bummis about the new relationship!

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Halloween Spider Web

I like to decorate for Halloween, but I don’t like to buy plastic zombie babies (they gross me out) or fake spider web only to throw it out on November 1. I decided to make some spider webs from yarn and twigs – I thought this was such a great idea to decorate without using disposable plastic decorations and it’s something you could store an use again next year! It’s a quick craft, I did it in about fifteen minutes with a toddler roaming around, so it really IS that easy. The most time consuming part was finding three suitable twigs. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Pruning shears
  • scissors
  • ball of scrap yarn
  • 3 – small twigs, approximately the same diameter and length. Straight is good.
  • floral wire

Step 1
Collect three dry, straight twigs approximately 2 cm in diameter and as long as you’d like. The length will determine how big your spider web will be. Use your pruning shears to cut the twigs to length.

Step 2

attach two twigs with floral wire

Take two twigs and make a cross shape. Attach securely with floral wire.

add a third twig diagonally across, secure with floral wire

Add the third twig diagonally to the second, secure. Have your yarn close by, tie one end of the yarn around one of the twigs.

Step 3
I am going to assume that at one time or another, you all made a God’s Eye ornament. I actually had no idea they were called this until this year, which shows how secular my upbringing was, but if you haven’t made one or need a refresher, here is a tutorial.

yarn woven around the sticks

Begin weaving the yarn around each twig, around and around. Don’t fill in the entire space, you want it to look a bit loose and filmy like a real spider web. Continue to the end of the stick. Attach a loop of yarn to one twig and hang. I have mine hanging with a display of rose bush branches and cattails from my yard.

wind blowing through

As the web has been hanging outside for a week or more, the wind has blown and battered it. I actually like this, some of the yarn is bunched together – it gives it a spookier Halloween look.

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Behind the Scenes Part III

During my lunch break I:

goldfish

:: fed the gold fish, Goldie and John.

Anubis

:: Made sure the dog was still breathing. He was.

lunch

:: Ate a left over bowl of chili cashew chicken noodles, a recipe by Donna Hay. Note that mine looks nothing like her photo. I also substituted pine nuts for cashews since that’s what was in my cupboard. Perused a back issue of Stitch Magazine to gather ideas for Christmas gifts I will have no time to complete but still like to think about.

more belly butter

:: I had prepared three more batches of Belly Butter for cooling before I went for lunch, so when I came back, I emulsified, whipped and jarred them all. I typically do three batches at a time and usually two sets of three to end with a decent amount of product. This is only a fraction of what I need to complete this week.

I’m still working on the Rose Toner and have 45 minutes left before my two older children arrive home from school. Their little brother will be along shortly, he spent the morning with my mom and providing the rain doesn’t pick up, she’ll walk him home in the stroller. I’d best get moving.

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{details}

Adapted from Soulemama‘s “…Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.”

Rather than capture a “moment”, I feel inspired to capture the small details around me, to remind me to stop and smell the roses in this new iteration of our lives.

first day of school

If you’ve noticed interesting {details} around you, please share or leave a link in the comments.

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The Perfect Soap Dish

Shave Soap, all lathered up

Sarah Bonnyman Round Soap Dish

I often get asked by people new to round soap (and handmade soap) what kind of soap dish to use. The best answer is a draining soap dish that has slots to allow your soap to dry between uses. Natural soap contains a significant amount of glycerine which is produced in the super-interesting but complicated-from-a-chemistry-perspective saponification process. This glycerine makes your soap soft, silky and a treat for your skin. Our soap also contains 50% olive oil, which makes it soft and remarkably gentle. If the soap is allowed to sit in a puddle of water, you will eventually end up with ‘smoosh’ for lack of a better technical term. Drainage is key and with proper storage, your bar of Anointment soap should last for weeks – well beyond the commercial stuff!

This summer I went to check my mail box and found this lovely gift carefully wrapped and packaged from one of our longtime customers – you know you have a loyal following when your customers send you gifts in the mail, it was a treat that warmed my heart – and don’t worry, I sent a gift back as a thank you!

This soap dish fits all the requirements for a natural, round soap like Anointment‘s. It is crafted by Sarah Bonnyman, a potter in Tatamagouche, NS. The raised slots allow water to drain and the size is just perfect for our soaps. Having looked on her website, I don’t see said soap dish available, but if you happen to be in Tatamagouche, check out her shop, or give her a call, I’m sure she’d love to hear from you!