As the owner of a salon and spa, and a stylist, I’m always asked by my clients, “What’s the latest trend?” It always makes me cringe when I get this question because I know where it stems from. As women, we are constantly worrying about our weight, our body image and how we look.


The beauty industry has warped our perception of an ideal woman by spending billions of dollars on advertising super-skinny airbrushed models. Our society is obsessed with the vision of a women’s outer shell that is unrealistic and superficial. We all too often forget about our inner beauty, where I believe all beauty stems from. And as someone who has struggled with my body, I can honestly say that learning to love and accept oneself is no easy task.

So my response to their question is always…” A trend is a trend and it doesn’t matter what the trend is if it doesn’t look good on you!” There are trends and fads all around us everyday and whether we are talking about hair style, diets, exercising or makeup, nothing is sexier or looks better on a woman than healthy!

Maintaining our health and spirituality helps to exude a confidence that radiates through everything we do. Like Audrey Hepburn once said,

The beauty of a woman is not in the clothes she wears, the figure that she carries, or the way she combs her hair. The beauty of a woman is seen in her eyes because that is the doorway to her heart, the place where love resides. True beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It’s the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows & the beauty of a woman only grows with passing years.”

Most of the beauty concerns I come across stem from an underlying health issue. Nothing is more important to me than helping my clients to lead a healthy and confident lifestyle, so I always discuss their lifestyle and health choices. We talk about what they are putting into and using on their bodies. If their hair is thinning or acne is showing up, we try to figure out what has changed in their life, not just recommend a myriad of products to try to fix it.

My problem is that we are bombarded with an unending supply of health and beauty products on the market that promise to solve all of our issues. Since most of them contain toxic ingredients they end up doing more harm than good. I often hear, “I only use a little everyday,” but did you know that the average woman today uses an average of 12 personal care products a day? 12 a day! We use a body moisturizer, but we can’t use that on our face, so we need a facial moisturizer. We need a facial cleanser and eye make-up remover. And don’t forget about the hair products, deodorant, make-up, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner and so much more. It all adds up.

The Environmental Working Group states “Personal care products are manufactured with 10,500 unique chemical ingredients, some of which are known or suspected carcinogens, toxic to the reproductive system or known to disrupt the endocrine system. Some choose to use dangerous ingredients like coal tar and formaldehyde, both human carcinogens, and lead acetate, a developmental toxin.”

No premarket safety testing is required for the industrial chemicals that go into personal care products or the chemical industry as a whole. According to the Office of Cosmetics and Colors at the federal Food and Drug Administration, “…a cosmetic manufacturer may use almost any raw material as a cosmetic ingredient and market the product without an approval from FDA.”

I know this can all be overwhelming and perhaps even after all this knowledge you don’t want to part with your favorite hairspray—so don’t! Start simple and only change one of your products today. Preferably one that you use the most like your soap or shampoo.

Look, I love using beauty products as much as anyone and in fact, a big portion of the success of my salon and spa depends upon us recommending products to our clients. But I want you to be aware of the plentiful and wonderful non-toxic options that are out there.

What better way to boost your confidence than a new lip color from Jane Iredale? Or an all-natural shampoo from Aveda? How about, an all-natural and organic soap from Purple Prairie? I suggest you search out a salon in your area that is going green and go for a sexy blowout. Here’s a link that explains our commitment to healthy bodies and a healthy environment at The Secret Garden Spa http://thesecretgardenspa.com/aboutus/

Just remember, to love your body is to be mindful of what you put in it and on it. More importantly, start by teaching this to your children so they to understand the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle.

And as always, if you have any questions, you can email me at vivian@secretgardenspa.com

In Good Health,


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