The bad word... Inflammation!

Lately, the word inflammation has become quite the buzzword. It turns out that inflammation does not only effect you internally, but your beauty is effected as well. It is the root of so many issues both internally and on the skin.

Inflammation is not all bad! It is actually the body’s defense system, providing protection from bacteria, viruses and injuries. When your body is under attack, it will respond by an inflammation process that sends chemicals from the body’s white blood cells to the area at risk. When the infection is gone or the injury has healed, the inflammation is supposed to go away. When our system is not functioning properly, then low levels of inflammation can linger in the body.

Inflammation can come from anywhere! An unhealthy diet, stress, poor sleep, pollution, second hand smoke and sun exposure can all lead to skin inflammation. I know when I do not watch my diet then I experience obvious signs of inflammation, like breakouts, brain fog and over all swelling.

Examples of external skin inflammation are acne breakouts, rosacea and visible signs of aging (like wrinkles and sagging skin). The higher our cortisol (our body’s main stress hormone) levels are, the more wound healing slows down and the more breakdown of collagen there is. Collagen helps keep the skin looking plump and smooth.

Acne is a sure sign of inflammation! Those angry, red bumps love to pop up because of stress, Why is that you always wake up with a blemish on your wedding day, your presentation day or a travel day?

Rosacea is another sign of inflammation in the skin, caused from stress, sun exposure, food, hormones and more.

First step to lowering the inflammation in your body is to eliminate any stress. I practice breathing techniques, workout and try to plan my day as much as I can. Second, is to get quality sleep every night. Easier said than done, but it is a must! Third, you can eat an anti-inflammatory diet. I have done this one many, many, many times and it is a great reset and reminder of how I should be eating daily. An anti-inflammatory diet includes organic grass fed protein, vegetables and some fruit (I avoid fruit other than lemons and berries because of the high sugar content), healthy oils, plenty of water, quinoa and brown rice. It is best to avoid sugar, dairy, gluten, processed foods, refined starches, caffeine and conventional meat.

A couple supplements to add to your regime to help reduce inflammation are curcumin and astaxanthin. Curcumin is the active ingredient in turmeric and astaxanthin is one of the most effective antioxidant supplements on the market right now.

The key is to treat inflammation from the inside. Good luck on your anti inflammatory journey!


Restoring Your Skin After A Night Out

Whether you recently had a night out or a week or more long vacation, your skin may not be looking it’s best! It’s true that your skin is a window for your overall health. This past month I have experienced both of the above and my skin has been struggling! While on vacation in the gorgeous Turks and Caicos, I made sure to pack travel samples of my must have skin care products to avoid any major issues, but of course my lackadaisical diet started to show up on my skin before I had even left the island to go home at the end of the week. Two weeks later a night out with my hubby and our friends just added more fuel to the fire. In a nutshell, all of the treatments and consistent maintenance I had done for my skin seemed to be washed down the drain.

So, how do you recover at a time like this? To begin, set down the alcoholic drinks, avoid sugar, dairy and any processed foods. One of the most important things you can do is drink tons of water. Multiply your weight by .5 and that will equal the amount of ounces you should drink per day. Any help to detox your liver is a plus too! Dandelion Root tea and a milk thistle supplement can really help do the trick.

Use a mineral based foundation powder versus a liquid foundation to avoid any skin congestion from synthetic fillers in a liquid foundation. When choosing skincare, use an oil free moisturizer, a mineral sunscreen (stay away from chemical sunscreens) and try a vitamin c serum in the morning to add brightness and clarity to your skin. Once your skin seems more calm adding a retinol serum or cream in the evening will help exfoliate and smooth your skin while keeping your pores clean and refined.

Then again, drink water. Lots and lots of water!

Benefits of Pumpkin

Fall is here and it is time to switch up your skincare routine! Did you know that pumpkins have more benefits than just tasting amazing? Pumpkin is packed with fruit enzymes and alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), which increase cell turnover, to brighten and smooth the skin. Age and environmental pollutants slow down the turnover of our cells, so our skin over time begins to look more dull. Using enzymes and AHA’s to exfoliate the skin will help to keep your skin looking more smooth and clear. Pumpkin contains antioxidant Vitamin A and Vitamin C to help soften and soothe the skin and boost collagen production to prevent the signs of aging. Vitamin C is one of the strongest antioxidants we can use for our skin. I notice such a difference in my own skin when I am using my Glo Skin Beauty Daily Power C serum each morning. My breakouts come to a halt, the surface flakiness is gone and my skin looks less red and more clear. It is honestly a must have product!

Pumpkins offer us more benefits than being a great skincare ingredient too! One perk from eating pumpkin is better rest. Pumpkin seeds are rich in tryptophan, an amino acid that is responsible for post-Thanksgiving dinner sleepiness. Tryptophan also contributes to helping the body produce serotonin, the feel-good neurotransmitter that assists you in relaxing and winding down. In addition to promoting better sleep, the serotonin will enhance your mood.

Pumpkin is also an overlooked source of fiber. One cup of pumpkin contains 3 grams of fiber and only 49 calories, which can keep you feeling full for long periods of time on fewer calories. A diet that is rich in fiber enables people to eat less, and thus shed pounds.

During the Fall and Winter months, I love using pumpkin to make smoothies or raw protein balls. Here is one of my favorite energy ball recipes:

Pumpkin Pie Energy Balls

Makes 10

1 cup pitted dates

1 cup raw cashews

1/4 cup canned pumpkin puree

1/4 cup gluten free rolled oats

1 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground allspice

1/4 cup raw hemp seeds

In a food processor, combine the dates, cashews, pumpkin puree, oats and pumpkin pie spice and process until a sticky mass forms.

Spread the hemp seeds on a large plate or in a baking dish. Using tablespoon, scoop the mixture and, with clean slightly wet hands and shape the mixture into a ball between the palms of your hands.

Roll the ball in the hemp seeds to lightly coat, and set on a separate plate. Repeat with the remaining mixture until you have 10 balls that are slightly smaller than a golf ball.

Place the balls in the freezer to set for 30 minutes. Store in an air tight container until required, then bring to room before serving.

This recipe is from the amazing Energy Balls book by Christal Sczebel, C.H.N.


Thank you for reading! Happy Fall:)

Need to refresh your look?

Many of us can easily get into a rut from time to time. You look in the mirror and wonder why you look so tired, your skin is dull, your teeth are not so white and all around you want to look more fresh and put together. After having three kids, let's just say that I have fallen into more ruts than I need to admit. Here are a couple of my favorite go to's to refresh your look from time to time. 

Skin. Your skin truly is such a huge focus and something that you show the world everyday. My first step to feeling and looking my best is to slough off some of the dead skin to reveal a more polished and clean complexion. I am a huge fan of chemical peels because they can give you the most bang for your buck. Your skin can quickly (after up to a week of peeling!) look glowing, more even and smooth. Visit your local esthetician to talk about the best peel options for your skin type! If you are on a tight budget or visiting a skincare pro is not for you, then here are some at home products that can help your skin brighten up... Dr. Gross Alpha Beta Daily Peel. Glo Skin Beauty makes an amazing scrub, refresh facial polish, to be used at least twice a week at night to leave your skin feeling so soft, clean and brand new!

Teeth. This is a quick fix that I have been using for years now! I have spent thousands of dollars purchasing teeth whitening products at the dentists office and I was never happy with the results or the painful sensitivity I was left with after a treatment. I found this affordable whitening product years ago in 2007 after watching Kandee Johnson on YouTube talk about how wonderful this stuff was. It is Plus White 5 Minute Speed Whitening System. I leave it on for at least 20 minutes for two-four nights in a row every couple of months to keep my teeth looking their best. I drink A LOT of coffee and this gel really works!

Hair. A mask for your hair is always revitalizing and a little more shine is never a bad thing! I love Quai Treatment Masque. This helps to restore moisture and repair damage for more soft and smooth hair. Leave the mask on for at least 15 minutes or put in your hair on a run or during a workout to get the most out of the product!

Health. Remember to listen to your body and rest when you need to, drink plenty of water and take your vitamins! I say this to my husband and kids all of the time, but it really does help. We love magnesium in our household. It helps with muscle recovery after tough workouts, the other vitamins you will take will absorb better and over all you feel more calm and sleep better. Skipping sugar is always a great idea! Too much sugar will make anyone feel not their best. 

These are all really simple and easy tips, but they can leave you feeling and looking better! 


Seasonless Makeup

With the change of the seasons and snow about to fall here in Denver, it is tempting to want to trade in the brightening colors of Spring and Summer for the rich and bold tones of Fall and Winter. The beautiful timeless palettes from Honest Beauty, Jessica Alba's new cosmetic line, may have you changing your mind. Jessica Alba is known for her discrete and polished makeup look of full brows, glowing skin, luscious lips and a thick lash line. Now, this is a look to take on for your own!

As a huge fan and monthly "bundler" of The Honest Company, I was beyond excited about the release of this effective yet safe beauty line. This line is truly meant for the day to day woman with easy to use products, realistic day to day colors and a great price point. I feel just as good about applying these cosmetics daily as I do about my non-toxic soaps, lotions and cleaning products from Honest. To view all of Jessica Alba's newest beauty line, check out

With love,

Danica Severance