Lying in with a lurgy – a few suprising products to nurse you through your cold

I have a little winter lurgy. One of those truly annoying ones that isn’t quite bad enough to get you out of work, but just bad enough to send you straight to bed when you get home. Ugh.

Needless to say, the last thing I feel like doing right now is sitting down to tap out the weekly post. I have, however, recently downloaded an app that scolds me when I don’t reach my weekly milestones, so I find myself at an impasse.

To take the sting out of soldiering on, I have decided to dial it down a notch and just share photos of some LLUF-approved products that are in my house for the purpose of providing sweet, sweet relief in moments like these. Such as Thursday Plantation Eucalyptus Oil.

Eucalyptus oil

Other than my bed, of course, this little bottle of strong-smelling goodness is my favourite possession in all the world right now.

Then there’s Ethical Nutrients Immune Defence tablets. Tastes weird, but I feel like it helps.

There’s also the essential super-moisturising body wash to help my skin withstand the longer, hotter showers I indulge in when I am sick. Natures Commonscents have just released their body wash range and they are divine.

Natures CS

And of course then there’s tea. Black tea, green tea, chai tea, peppermint tea. Realistically no hot beverage is off limits unless it requires lots of milk. I’m a big fan of a simple lemon wedge squeezed into a mug of water, or some diluted apple juice heated in the microwave as well.

Tea2

So there you have it. A few of my favourites. I hope they serve you well. And now I am off to bed.

Tricks for travel: how to pack a bag in a rush

Suitcase

I haven’t spent much time at home lately. Through a chaotic combination of interstate travel, opera choruses, and friends who have been left alone too long with screaming toddlers, I’ve essentially been living out of a suitcase for a month. Luckily I used to travel a lot for work, so I have packing for nights away down to a fine art.

The following tricks come in particularly handy if, like me, you have an adhoc approach to doing laundry, a largely mismatched wadrobe, and a propensity for waking up hungover on packing day. Sigh.

So what are my best tricks?

1) Have your toiletries already packed

I have a box of ‘holiday’ toiletries from which I can quickly grab what I need for a night or a few weeks away, whatever the requirement. This includes the following LLUF approved items:

  • Natio Tinted Moisturiser (SPF50) – because I spend more time in the sun and less time with make up on when I’m away;
  • MooGoo Fresh Cream Roll On Deoderant – I don’t travel with aerosols to expediate airport check in;
  • Small refillable bottles for shampoo, conditioner and body wash;
  • A lip gloss that can double as a creme blush; and
  • Sids and Kids baby wipes – supporting a cause close to my heart; making it easier to remove makeup after a late night out; and providing an emergency option for touching up an insufficiently cleaned hotel room

Toiletries

2) Always pack the basics first

Socks, jocks, pyjamas and always, always, always togs – just in case you get the chance to go swimming.

This leaves your mind totally free to focus on your outfits, without the fear of overlooking something important. Noone wants to be the family member who ends up in a blog post like this one by Mama Raj, which may or may not refer to Mr LLUF. He admits nothing.

3) Plug your phone into your charger so you remember it

We have all been through the traumatic experience of leaving a phone charger behind. Even if my phone doesn’t need charging I plug it in overnight, and when that alarm goes off in the morning I throw the phone and the charger into the bag straight away.

4) Always pack a book, a pen and paper

Lighter than a laptop, and not so hard on the eyes as a phone. Sometimes the old fashioned methods of entertaing yourself are the best. I like to use travel time as an opportunity to reflect, and write down some goals for my return to real life. But pen and paper comes in handy for many other things – including entertaining children if you are planning to be eating out with any families and actually want to be able to hold a conversation with the parents.

These tricks drastically reduce the impact that travel has on my stress levels – hopefully there’s something useful in here for you too.

Aussie products to get you through the Aussie summer!!

Bagara beach

Things are heating up here in Australia!! And it couldn’t come soon enough as far as I am concerned. Looking forward to wading in the ocean, long lazy days reading a book under a tree, a dip at the local pool… ah summer bliss.

But summer isn’t always bliss. Skin damage, heatstroke, and the blinding glare of the afternoon sun can leave you feeling a little ravaged. And who better to know how to help with this issue than some dinkie-die Aussies themselves?

So let me share with you some great Australian made products that can help you through the summer months:

Cool Cossies

Rival Swimwear is Australian made and has swimwear for everyone – from tiny tots having their first splash in the paddling pool, to Iron men looking for that perfect pair of budgy smugglers. Women who want to train seriously, or women who just want to look nice while they make a fool of themselves pretending to swim can both find something that works for them with this brand. In the interests of full disclosure, let me confirm that I fit squarely into the later category.

Sunscreen

Super Sun Protection

I love Hamilton Sunscreens Everyday Face Sunscreen. Provides you with high protection, and a sweet little tint to help you look your best. But they also have toddler sunscreen, and normal sunscreen, and spray sunscreen. Who new you could have so many types of sunscreen. They have recently upgraded their entire range to 50+, which seems crazy to someone who remembers her mother talking about how ridiculous it was that sunscreens were going up to 15+. But we got used to that, and now I always use 30+. I guess it’s just a matter of time before 50+ becomes normal too.

Gaia

A bit of pocket relief

In the height of summer I will have a face spray bottle by the bed, one in my handbag, and one in the fridge. It’s so nice when you are hot and flusted to cool down with a quick, sweet smelling spray. One of my favourites is GAIA Rose Otto and Lavendar Refreshing Toner, pictured below.

Good Quality Glasses

I have two pairs of sunnies that are about a million years old, and still going strong. So I am not in the market for a pair of Australian made sunnies myself right now. But if I were, the first three brands I’d hit up are:

  • Spotters for sports style sunnies
  • Glarce for high end fashion sunnies
  • Topheads for something cool and biodegradeable

 

Happy summer people!!

 

Washing your hands [with] responsibilty

…not of responsibility.

There are all sorts of conflicting reports about how long it takes various plastic articles to break down but essentially, without very specific conditions and poisoning the environment around it – it does’t. Highlight Kids provides a short explanaition as to why (pitched at exactly my level of scientific understanding) – click here if you are interested.

The thought that my bottle of moisturiser may still be poisoning the earth long after my body has returned to it is horrifying, and made so much worse when I think of all the wildlife it might kill on the way out. According to the Queensland Government Department of Environmental and Heritage Protection an estimated 100 000 marine mammals and turtles are killed by plastic litter every year around the world. And I haven’t even started on the damage done to the environment and wildlife during the manufacturing of this bottle!!

So with all this weighing heavily on my heart I have been trying to come up with new ways to cut more and more plastic out of my daily life, and my most recent adjustment has been in the hygiene department. Don’t worry, I’m still washing, but I have discovered that the simple act of swapping one soap for another has made a huge difference to the plastic consumption in my house.

First I got rid of liquid soap in the bathroom. If you buy liquid soap because you like the anti-bacterial stuff read this article about its potential impacts on your health and the environment and stop!!! If you buy it because you have a snazzy pump dispenser that goes perfectly with your bathroom decor, perhaps you could consider treating yourself to the snazziest soap dish you can find to ease its passing.

I must admit that we are still using liquid soap (not the anti-bacterial kind) in the kitchen. I just find it so much neater in this already explosively chaotic corner of the house. And hey, if it really suits your life style to keep buying a truckload of pump packs, go ahead. Just remember to recycle.

But if you are planning to switch to good old fashioned bar soap like I have then here are my suggestions for four fantastic brands that are packaged in good old fashioned cardboard. Even less plastic!!

photo 4

Cheap and cheerful with a classic scent, Country Life Original is the perfect everyday soap.

photo 3

Velvet Beauty Bars are the perfect alternative for Dove users. Still has the moisturising benefits and not only is it made in Australia instead of Thailand, but its bulk packs aren’t wrapped in plastic film either!

 

photo 2

People with sensitive skin and a bit of extra cash to burn may like to try Natures Commonscents, which ironically has no scent, marketing itself as fragrance free.

photo 1

This soap’s fresh scent is perfect for washing off a hard day at work. It is also literally the gift that keeps giving, with funds raised from the sale of Thankyou products going into development projects in poorer countries.