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We love Tamarind Fruit – But what about the Seed?

Most people know about Tamarind fruit in some form, in Tamarind juice, in Indian chutney or curry or in good old BBQ sauce… Tamarind fruit pulp is the base for what most of us know as Tamarind.  The pulp which is rich in Vitamins and minerals boasts a whole list of health benefits by itself, helping to regulate digestion, improving blood glucose levels, blood circulation and cholesterol.  But did you know that hidden inside that tangy-sticky fruit pulp of a whole Tamarind are seeds (3-12 per pod) packed with proteins, amino acids, essential fatty acids and minerals?  These little morsels of nutrition have surprising health benefits on their own!

For the Body:  Joint Relief & Other Benefits

Tamarind Seed holds great anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial benefits (1) when ingested.  Amongst its traditional uses is the treatment for joint pain and arthritis by ingesting roasted Tamarind Seed Powder.  Early research suggests that Tamarind Seed does indeed reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in joints, helping with pain and protecting bone and cartilage (2).

For Skin:  The Skin Hydration Optimizer

When applied to skin, Tamarind Seed Extract helps draw and bind vital hydration to the skin by feeding the skin’s natural moisturizing factor in the skin’s surface, similar to how Hyaluronic Acid does.  The genius lies in the molecular structure of Tamarind Seed Extract, which is able to penetrate the skin surface more deeply, resulting in deeper and more long-lasting hydration.  We use Tamarind Seed Extract in our Tamarind Tea Hydrating Toner, where it is combined with Hyaluronic Acid, Green, White & Black Tea and Rice Bran Extract to draw and bind vital hydration to the skin and feed the skin’s natural moisturizing factor (NMF).

Make your own Tamarind Seed Powder!

While fresh whole Tamarind is now available in many Asian and Latin grocery stores in the US, Tamarind Seeds alone or Tamarind Seed Powder are not.  Fortunately, you can make your own Tamarind Seed Powder quite easily!

  1. Buy fresh whole Tamarind and save the seeds after eating the pulp as a snack or using it for cooking.  Wash and dry the seeds with a paper towel.
  2. Roast the seeds in the oven at 300 degrees for approximately 10 minutes. Alternatively you can also roast them in a frying pain on low heat for about 5.  Let cool.
  3. Wrap the roasted seeds in a dish towel, place them on a thick wooden cutting board and roughly crush with a hammer. The kernels are very hard so you will need to use quite a bit of force.  When the Tamarind Seed cracks, the dark brown seed skin will come off, exposing the inner white seed.  Keep the brown skin.  It has nutrients as well!
  4. Grind the crushed kernels and seed skin in a coffee grinder until it is a fine powder. You will notice a nice, nutty aroma.
  5. Store in an airtight container. Keep cool and dry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Add 1 teaspoon of Tamarind Powder to your smoothie, juice or yogurt.  The powder does not actually dissolve in water, so I have found it easier to consume when it was suspended in a thicker medium like a smoothie or yogurt.

Enjoy experimenting!

Turmeric Bioavailability – Easy tricks to maximize its benefits

Turmeric is a key ingredient in Jamu, the ancient Indonesian herbal medicine.  Since the scientific community in European and American started taking an interest in this rhizome in the last 20th century, Turmeric has become one of the most studied herbs.  The key nutrient in Turmeric that has been shown anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and potential anti-cancer properties is Curcumin.  Unfortunately, the health benefits of Curcumin when ingested, cannot be fully realized because if poor bioavailability, meaning that Curcumin is quickly broken down and metabolized by the liver and intestinal walls before it can work its magic where needed.

The good news is that there are simple tricks to improve Curcumin’s bioavailability – tricks that can be done daily and easily as part of your regular diet:

1.Mix it with fat

Curcumin is fat soluble.  By combining or dissolving it with a fat, it is better absorbed into the bloodstream (1).  It’s easy:  Combine Turmeric with a heart-healthy oil in a vegetable stir fry.  Or add it to your smoothie together with coconut milk or full-fat kefir.

2.  Fresh Turmeric vs. dried Turmeric

Dried Turmeric powder is more widely available than the fresh rhizome, but fresh Turmeric actually has better “built-in” bioavailability (2) because is about 10% fat content.

3.  Heat it up

Bioavailability of Curcuma is even further improved, when Turmeric is lightly heated in oil (3), which is why Turmeric is ideal to incorporate into your daily cooking, whether it is a stir fry or a curry sauce.

4.  Add a dash of Black Pepper

Black pepper contains piperine, which blocks the body from rapidly metabolizing Curcumin.  In fact, consuming fresh black pepper together with Turmeric, can improve bioavailability of Curcumin by 2000% (4).

5.  Combine it with Quercetin-rich fruits & vegetables

Quercetin is an antioxidant that gives certain fruits and vegetables their dark, blue-ish color.  Research shows that Quercetin blocks an enzyme that would metabolizes Curcumin, thus making it more bioavailable (5).  Quercetin-rich foods include blueberries, red grapes, red onions, green tea but also red apples.

 

In Skincare – Proven Effective

Turmeric has a long tradition in Indonesian beauty rituals as well, most famously in the Lulur bridal spa treatment.  While it is an age old recipe to boost skin radiance and luminosity, there is a growing body of recent scientific evidence that underscores topical Turmeric’s benefits in helping prevent and reduce oxidative stress, inflammation, acne, and signs of premature aging such as irregular skin tone and sun damage.  When we at JUARA craft formulations, we draw our inspiration from Indonesian tradition, but we also ensure that we select botanicals that have been tested for efficacy and safety according to today’s standards.

Several of JUARA products are formulated with Turmeric, including our

Clove Flower & Turmeric Anti-Aging Serum, Turmeric Antioxidant Radiance Mask, Radiance Vitality Oil, Sweet Black Tea & Rice Moisturizer and Miracle Tea Complete Eye Creme, but also in body treatments such as our Kartini Body Oil.

To explore JUARA treatments that feature Turmeric and other active Jamu botanicals, click here.

A Jamu Lifestyle of Wellness, Community & Love

Let’s start with what we know. We know Jamu is an herbal healing tradition from Indonesia that spans across centuries, and is a part of everyone from ancient royalty, the villager, and the cosmopolitan youth today. We know Jamu utilizes ingredients including turmeric, tamarind, ginger, rice, and many more roots and plants indigenous to the Indonesian islands. But, did you know that Jamu is a tradition that is more than just the tonics – but also about the people who participate in a lifestyle of wellness, including the stories and relationships we have with people around this healing tradition?

One of the oldest Jamu companies that started over 4 generations ago is called Nonya Meneer. Mrs. Meneer has her own story and it starts like this: One day, Mrs. Meneer finds her husband is sick. No one can find a cure, and he’s not getting better. She, in her determination to save her husband, starts concocting herbs to see if she can cure him. She takes her basic knowledge and starts researching far and wide (not an easy feat back in the day,) to create something, anything that would work. One day, after repeated efforts, she concocted something that worked, (and yes, it contained turmeric too,) and thus his life was saved. Word spread of her ability to cure her husband and others in her village started coming to her for tonics that could also bring them back to health… and that’s how her business started. Her great granddaughter, who remains one of the Jamu recipe-bearers handed down today told me this story; she said her great grandmother was motivated by love to find a cure for her husband.

Everywhere I turn in Indonesia there is a story; my Indonesian friend laughs as she says her old, worried grandmother used to make her and her other grandkids drink a dark, bitter her tonic as a child for illness prevention and to treat my friend’s condition of perpetually cold hands. Even as my friend makes an icky face when talking about the taste of the tonic (occasionally being naughty and pouring it out in the toilet), the entire story is told with love and smiles. And my mom, the cosmetics junkie with all her expensive department store cremes and potions, dragged me into her bathroom one day before I had to go to work to show me her best skin tonic is smashing fresh tamarind into cold water and rubbing it on her face after cleansing saying “I’ve tried everything, my mom taught me this, and this still works better…”

Jamu used to come from the word “Jampi” which means “magical concoction.” There is a spiritual (not necessarily religious) aspect of Jamu in its history as centuries ago, the early healers who would create these tonics would also say a mantra/prayer and ask for a blessing form the gods before serving them so that these “magical recipes” would work to bring the patient back to wellness. Therefore Jamu isn’t only about the ingredients alone but the intent of wellness as well.

Today, as much as life may have changed, it really hasn’t – the basics of human relationships, eating and drinking healthily, taking are of our skin in a holistic, balanced fashion is as important now, if not more than ever in our fast paced world. Keeping the basics, bringing elements of the Jamu lifestyle centering around inner health, outer beauty and overall peace and happiness from self care still exists.

How do we maintain a Jamu lifestlye? It’s not hard – it starts with a belief that our own happiness matters, and therefore our health and wellness matters. Next is incorporation the healthy ingredients of Jamu and positive intentions in our lives in various ways, reminding us of our own journey to wellness and self care. We know the ingredients of Jamu are healthy, and now they are more accessible to all of us. Turmeric, tamarind, candlenut, rice, cinnamon – we consume Jamu ingredients for health and enjoyment more than we know today, it’s just becoming more intentional about it.

Jamu is a living tradition; in Indonesia, Jamu cafes are popping up, the next generation adding their spin on the older recipes, and even in the US, I go to restaurants that spice their food with “Bali spice.” I was just in LA and 2 nights in a row, that was on the menu – even the west is coming up with its own variation on ingredients of an ancient tradition. The point is Jamu is about infusing these specific ingredients in our daily lives for holistic wellness and care – not only for ourselves but also for others around us who we love. So share the love of life by incorporating a more Jamu-infused lifestyle!

Candlenut: The Balanced Nut!

Candlenut holds a special place at JUARA.  Our very first JUARA product we launched was our popular Candlenut Body Creme, a.k.a. Bali in a Jar, which became an instant hit with customers, editors and estheticians alike.  By popular demand, many more Candlenut treasures followed.

But what exactly is Candlenut?  Rarely do you ever see it sold in a regular grocery store because its consumption is usually limited to the region where it is cultivated, mostly South East Asia and Hawaii.  It looks like an oversized macadamia nut or hazelnut.  Even though it is not widely known, Candlenut is probably one of the most versatile and healthy nuts out there, having been used for medicinal purposes, cooking as well as skincare for centuries.

Omega 6 & 3 Essential Fatty Acids:  The Ratio is Key

Like most nuts, Candlenut has a high oil content (70%).  What makes Candlenut special amongst its peers is its high content of Essential Fatty Acids (EFA).  And not only that, it has what is considered an ideal ratio of Omega 6 and Omega 3 fatty acids.  While both EFAs have health benefits, it has been shown that the typical Western diet is by far too rich in Omega 6 fatty acids relative to Omega 3 fatty acid consumption, leading to chronic inflammation.  Nobody knows what the ideal ratio exactly is, but current estimates state a ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 of anywhere between 1:1 and 4:1 as ideal.  It is estimated that people in developed countries reach a ratio of about 15:1.  It has been shown even higher in the typical American diet, where it reaches levels of 25:1 due to a high consumption of fast & processed foods and fried foods which are typically rich in Omega 6, and a low consumption of Omega 3-rich foods like fish and certain nuts and seeds.  Candlenut has a ratio of Omega 3 and 6 of about 1.7:1, which is considered in the ideal range.  As a comparison, Walnuts have a ratio of about 4:1, Pecans 22:1, Flax Seeds 1:4, Sunflower Seeds:  312:1, Corn Oil 46:1, Wild Salmon 1:12, Canned Tuna 1:30.

Other Health Benefits

Candlenut is also rich in saponin, flavonoid and polyphenols, plant compounds that have  anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting benefits as well as antibacterial effects.  Plus, it contains not only alpha tocopherol (the most familiar form of Vitamin E), but also gamma tocopherol, which works synergistically with alpha tocopherol to provide antioxidant protection.

Try it in Food!

In its native Indonesian and Malay, Candlenut is used in cooking as a thickener for curries and soups.  One easy way to incorporate Candlenuts is to roasted Candlenuts in the oven or frying pan, which brings out their aroma, before chopping or shaving them and sprinkling them over curry, soups or salad.

Try it on your Skin!

Candlenut is rich in EFA, the skincare benefits of which have been well documented.  EFAs help reduce inflammation, strengthens the skin’s own protective barrier, and Omega 6 essential fatty acid specifically helps acne-prone skin clear up clogged pores.  Candlenut’s boasting both Omega-3 and 6 as well as natural anti-microbial properties make it suitable for all skin types, ranging from dry to oily, including sensitive and acne-prone skin.

All of JUARA’s Candlenut products are formulated with Candlenut Oil, but we have added this precious oil to other treatments as well, including:

Kartini Body Oil – $58, 4 oz

The luxurious body oil fit for royalty (hence the name Kartini, named after a Princess who was also a big champion of women’s rights in Indonesia).  A truly nourishing blend of Candlenut, Plumeria, Passionfruit, Moringa and Turmeric Oil, with a silky, light-as-air texture with firming, brightening and softening benefits.

Coconut Illipe Hand & Nail Balm – $20. 2.5 oz

Pure relief and moisture for dry, hard-working hands, that stays on even after washing your hands.  A replenishing blend of oils and butters, plus soothing oat beta glucan and brightening algae Energy immediately comfort skin & cuticles.  Result:  Hands that are soft and smooth, never greasy.

Sweet Black Tea & Rice Facial Moisturizer – $60, 1.7 oz

Energy for dry, dull skin. “Kombucha”, nourishing botanical oils and our unique Radiant Complex hydrate, firm, smooth and boost skin luster.  The perfect daily moisturizer for normal to dry skin. 

Miracle Tea Complete Eye Crème – $53, 0.5 oz

This miracle worker gives the fragile skin around the eyes the whole TLC package:  It hydrates, smooths fine lines & wrinkles, reduces the look of dark circles and under-eye bags for a refreshed look!

Radiance Vitality Oil – $70, 1.0oz

The Queen of Face Oils (Face Oil of the Year, Self Magazine 2015) addresses all signs of aging with 12 pure plant oils and extracts by helping to firm, nourish, smooth and revitalize, with results you can see and feel after only one application.

Nourish your natural beauty all over with Candlenut in JUARA products here!

Love it all! Coconut Water vs. Milk vs. Oil

When I’m thirsty in Indonesia, the first thing I look for on the menu is a fresh young coconut. There’s really nothing that beats the clean, pure, and completely satisfying thirst quench that happens when the delicious juice fills your mouth. It’s a bit of a norm where I’m from, like in the same way that in a restaurant in the US you ask for an orange juice, if I’m in Indonesia at a local restaurant, I ask for a coconut.  
 
The coconut is a pretty standard ingredient of Indonesia used in very many different ways, for inside and out, beauty and health. One interesting tidbit is that Indonesia is the world’s largest producer of coconuts. We use the coconut fruit itself to make coconut milk for curries and desserts, the actual to grate as well and season to cook in savory dishes, or to roll little desserts in (called Kueh Basah – “wet cake”) and the water to drink. We use coconut oil in cooking, to eat as a health supplement, and to use in our hair to make it silky soft – and in the US, I also cook with the oil and milk, drink the water, and even use the oil in our JUARA products – like our JUARA Radiance Vitality Oil
 
There are so many uses for a coconut, but 3 main components we all talk about: the Oil, Water, Milk… do you know the difference in their health benefits? I’m curious myself!
 

COCONUT WATER

This is the water found in the young coconut before it ripens into the coconut meat itself. Coconut water has a slightly sweet taste (so not sugar-free,) contains about 94% water and very little fat. It also contains electrolytes – important in helping your body maintain its proper fluid balance. It contains potassium, magnesium, sodium, and calcium, so next time you want to reach for that Gatorade, if coconut water is handy at the store, try for that instead! Last but not least, coconut water contains antioxidants that fight free radicals and hormone called cytokinins which help with anti-aging, so it’s a great overall health beverage that only has 45 calories a cup!
 

COCONUT MILK

Contrary to what some may think, coconut milk isn’t really a milk but water added to the grated coconut flesh. Leave it too long, and it will separate; the cream from the water – and the cream that rises to the top is also known as coconut cream. (Fun fact: Coconut milk can be made from boiling 1 part grated coconut with 1 part water. You can make coconut cream by boiling 3 parts grated coconut with 1 part water.)  It is highly nutritious and rich in fiber, vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6, and contains minerals including iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous. The interesting thing is that you hear good and bad things about coconut milk. It’s high in saturated fat (bad), however the specific fats in coconut also contain a fatty acid called Lauric acid that has several benefits which may include weight loss, and may also help protect your body from viruses and illnesses (good). So as with living a balanced healthy life, consume in moderation. 
 

COCONUT OIL

The oil is what you get when you press the fat out of the coconut meat. About 84% of the calories of coconut oil come from saturated fat, vs 14% of olive oil and 63% of butter. This is why coconut oil gets hard easily at room temperature. Neat factoid, right? However, the MCT fat in coconut oil (as well as the meat) actually has the benefit of boosting your HDL, aka your good cholesterol and being burned off as energy vs being stored like other saturated fats, though it doesn’t exactly lower your LDL (bad cholesterol) either. Repeating the moderation mantra, one should limit intake to about 13 grams a day, which is around 1 tablespoon. Cooking tip – Don’t fry or cook at high temperatures with coconut oil, as it has a smoke point of 350 degrees. (Likewise, butter and olive oil have similarly lower smoke points.) Frying has a temperature of about 350-400 degrees – so select other high-temperature tolerant oils for that, like avocado oil for best results and better health!
 

EASY HOLIDAY RECIPE

So – coconut is an all year treat – and my current obsession perfect for holidays – making my own coconut milk pumpkin spice latte! How? SUPER EASY: 
  • Combine 2 teaspoons of pumpkin puree from a can (like what you make pumpkin pies out of with 1 teaspoon of agave/sweetener and a pinch of cinnamon. Stir. 
  • Add to a hot cup of coffee – best be a stronger dark roast for a rich flavor; it just blends better with the pumpkin. Trader Joe’s has a great Gingerbread Coffee that’s just a dark roasted coffee blend mixed with holiday spices, but a good French roast will do too.  
  • Add the puree to the coffee and mix, add more sweetener as needed. 
  • Add warmed coconut milk (not from a can, but in the dairy-substitute section of milk, where the have Almond, Soy and other alternative milk) and stir. Enjoy!

Cinnamon: For Health & Holiday Cheers!

‘Tis the season for all things Cinnamon!  Ahhh…what would the holidays be without Cinnamon’s signature aroma.  Whether we’re talking aromatic cookies, spiced cakes or hearty stews, Cinnamon is one of the most popular spices, loved and revered around the world.  Its use originates as far back as Ancient Egypt as a key ingredient in the embalmment ritual.  While Cinnamon is readily available in regular grocery stores today, it was so highly prized and considered so precious in the past, it was a gift reserved only for royalty or deity.

Not surprisingly, like many popular spices, humans began using Cinnamon primarily for medicinal purposes first, before it became a popular flavoring agent.  Native to South Asia and South East Asia, Cinnamon has a long tradition in Jamu, Indonesia’s traditional herbal medicine.  What ancient healers have known all along, modern medicine has only begun to discover are the many health benefits of Cinnamon.

CHEERS UP YOUR METABOLISM

While Cinnamon has well-documented antimicrobial and antioxidant properties (…hence a key preservative-like ingredient when the Ancient Egyptians embalmed their kings & queens), a particularly exciting discovery has been that Cinnamon can improve metabolic diseases such as glucose intolerance, high cholesterol and triglycerides (1).  While more studies are necessary, in one study volunteers ate half a teaspoon of Cinnamon daily for 40 days, which cut their cholesterol by about 18% and blood sugar levels by 24% (2).  The theory is that Cinnamon increases insulin sensitivity while also reducing the amount of glucose that enters the bloodstream after a carbohydrate-rich meal.  And unless you have an allergy Cinnamon or liver disease, this spice can be consumed safely daily in food, drink or as part of a meal.

GOOD FOR SKIN INSIDE & OUT

A healthy glucose metabolism is crucial for healthy skin from the inside since high blood sugar causes inflammation and premature aging in the skin in a process called “glycation”.  What about applying Cinnamon  topically?  Cinnamon is rich in polyphenols and antioxidants, which makes it a great ingredient to prevent skin aging.  Its antimicrobial properties also help break-out prone skin, where proliferation of acne bacteria cause acne blemishes.  JUARA Sweet Black Tea & Ginger Oil-Free Moisturizer combines anti-aging, oil-control and break-out-fighting benefits all in one refreshing gel-crème that contains a potent Jamu combination of Kombucha, Ginger and Cinnamon plus Hyaluronic Acid.

EASY TO INCLUDE IN YOUR DAILY LIFE

Having gone through gestational diabetes and fluctuating blood sugar issues myself, I try to stick to a balanced diet that avoids blood sugar spikes and dips. Cinnamon has become part of my daily ritual – not just in my skincare.  A dash on my morning oatmeal combined with nuts and apples – delicious!  A dash in a cup of Ginger Tea – so soothing!  And in the occasional cookie to indulge…because it’s all about balance!

Ingredient Spotlight: Avocado – Inside & Out!

Oh the weather outside is snowing… well almost. Wherever you are this holiday season. One thing for sure is winter can bring about dryness and dehydration – whether it’s the cold air or the cozy heaters inside. Humidity goes down, dehydration goes up! What’s one ingredient we all know and love which helps with hydration and rich fatty acid nourishment? It’s one of humanity’s favorite foods (for both body and skincare)… the avocado! This particular fruit has been used for centuries in Indonesian food and beauty traditions. Avocados are affordable and abundant in Indonesia, used for anything from the famous “cremebath” hair treatments to avocado juices and beyond. In fact, avocado drinks are a staple in Indonesia. And we LOVE it for JUARA. No matter how it’s used, avocados are renowned for their wealth of health benefits for not just your body, but your skin and hair too… here’s a rundown of all sorts of benefits – inside and out! 
 

FOR SKIN

  • Rich in fatty acids that deeply moisturize the skin.
  • Potassium, lecithin, and more to nourish on a cellular level.
  • Antioxidants that soothe dry, irritated, and flaky skin.
  • Prevents (and even treats) acne, thanks to avocado’s superb anti-inflammatory effects.
We give hats off to the great uses in this skin softening, hydrating leave-on mask, our JUARA Java Plum & Avocado Mask, our Radiance Vitality Oil, our Sweet Black Tea & Rice Facial Moisturizer, and the Miracle Tea Eye Creme! Curious? Details below…
 

FOR HAIR

  • Rejuvenates and moisturizes the scalp – where healthy hair begins.
  • Vitamins A, D, E, and B6 nourish hair and scalp while promoting speedy growth.
  • Antioxidants rescue hair from free radicals.
  • Unclogs follicles and stimulates new hair growth from dormant follicles.
There is a traditional and common treatment we regularly partake in at the salon called the creme bath where you get a legit amazing deep conditioning hair treatment that includes a 45 minute (yes 45 full minutes!) of a head, neck and shoulder/arm massage while undergoing deep conditioning. You can choose which kind of ingredient is used in the deep conditioner based on hair needs: Rich Candlenut for shiny black hair, Hydrating Avocado for dry hair, Protein-filled Egg for fine hair, and Aloe Vera for thin hair. If you’re even in Indonesia, you MUST ask for a cremebath at the spa or salon!
 

FOR BODY

  • Keep your weight in check: Munch on avocados daily to maintain a healthy weight and boost digestion.
  • Prevent heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even obesity thanks to avocado’s dietary fiber.
  • High in Fat. Low in Carbs: Avocados are nutritious and delicious, packed with vitamins and nutrients that have even more potassium than bananas!
 
Honestly, we could go on all day – but we’re sure you get the picture. If you don’t, follow in Indonesia’s footsteps and let avocado into your life today. The nation continues to choose sweet over savory, unlike Westerners, blending it into just about everything – shakes, milky drinks, coffee, and even chocolate syrup. Indonesians also fill their bathtubs with avocado to boost circulation and soften the skin. So, next time you stock up on avocados, reimagine what you can do with them. We at JUARA certainly did and we love them in our products! See what we do with Avocado in our products, and experience what they can do for your skin!
 
Java Plum & Avocado Moisture Mask – $38, 3.0oz
Moisturizes, soothes, strengthens, plums, softens & is age-delaying. Give your skin an extra moisture boost and renewed vitality! Replenish dry, parched skin with this rich, nutrient-packed combination of Avocado Oil, Java Plum, Banana & Mango that deeply hydrates, soothes and plumps skin, leaving behind a soft, dewy complexion.
 
 
Miracle Tea Eye Creme – $53, 0.5oz
Firms, brightens, minimizes fine lines & wrinkles, reduces puffiness & dark circles. Our multi-tasking eye treatment is the complete package! Featuring our Radiance Complex and “Miracle Tea” a.k.a. “Probiotic Kombucha”, this eye cream boosts Radiance, firms and hydrates while minimizing the appearance of fine lines, dark circles and puffiness. Don’t trust us? Ask Drew Barrymore – she thought so!  
 
Sweet Black Tea & Rice Facial Moisturizer – $60, 1.7 oz
Maintains elasticity, boosts radiance, hydrates, firms, smoothes. Re-energize dry, dull skin. This silky antioxidant-rich moisturizer featuring our unique Radiance Complex, “Kombucha” and nourishing botanical oils, boosts hydration and Radiance and helps reduce the look of fine lines & wrinkles for smooth, healthy-looking skin.
 
 
Radiance Vitality Oil – $70, 1.0oz
Brightens, firms, nourishes, revitalizes. 
After just 1 use: 
97% felt the oil nourished and hydrated their skin, and loved the texture of this gentle but powerful oil.
90%+ felt their skin was protected, soft, silky smooth, healthy and hydrated.
Radiance redefined! Light-as-air, smooth-as-silk, this award-winning* face oil addresses all signs of aging by boosting Radiance, increasing elasticity, and minimizing fine lines and wrinkles with its 12 pure & precious oils and extracts.

 

Get your avocado on with JUARA in in our FACE PRODUCTS here!
 

Post-Halloween Skin Savers

On October 31st, your sexy clown Halloween costume seems like the PERFECT idea.

On November 1st… not so much.

All of that clown makeup, candy and booze wrecked your skin.

So What Do You Do?

Here are 5 simple steps to detox your skin (and body) after a so-much-fun-it-bordered-on-too-much-fun Halloween!

1. Cleanse with a Gentle Scrub.

Let’s be honest, you probably aren’t going to wash your face when you get home at 2am. When you wake up, you’re going to look like a very, very sad clown. Reverse the damage by cleansing with a scrub! The exfoliation will help to lift the makeup, sweat and dirt out of your pores to ready them for the next step. Our JUARA Radiance Enzyme Scrub does double duty as a cleansing scrub with all natural jojoba and bamboo beads PLUS quick fruit enzyme mask, so skin is freshly clean, healthy, and ready to receive further treatment!

2. Detox with a Mask…or Two!

So now your face is red, blotchy, and that pimple on your chin that’s been plaguing you since middle school is back with a vengeance. Apply a deep pore cleansing mask to detox your skin, allowing those nasty blemishes to surface and then fade away. The JUARA Rose & Willow Bark Purifying Mask will purify skin while calming it down, so say bye-bye to that red zit and hello to refined pores.

Blemish free already? Try our Turmeric Antioxidant Radiance Mask to clear your pores of the same dirt and makeup, but also give it a healthy, “I wasn’t at a party but at a yoga class…” type of radiant complexion. Feeling doubly ambitious? Use the Rose & Willow Bark Blemish-Free Mask, and after, follow with the Turmeric Antioxidant Radiance mask for a true deep clean and rejuvenated glow.

Skin feeling dehydrated and depleted?  Give your skin an extra dose of nourishment and moisture by applying our Java Plum Avocado Nourishing Mask.  Too tired and sluggish to take it off?  This skin comforting mask you can just leave on overnight, so enjoy your well-deserved rest while the mask does all the work!

3. Flush Out Toxins with Ginger & Turmeric

Once your face is taken care of, it’s time to address your body. That Halloween party was such a blast that it left you bloated, dehydrated and hungover. Your liver is working overtime to flush all that booze out of your system, so give it some extra loving support with a Ginger and Turmeric.  While the mask is treating your skin, mix up a soothing ginger-turmeric tea to detox and de-bloat. Make sure to keep drinking water throughout the day to keep your body hydrated and happy. We’re loving the easy-to-find Trader Joe’s Ginger-Turmeric Tea, just add a pinch of Turmeric powder form your spice rack or add Turmeric drops from the healthfood store.  Or if you want to go homemade, just chop equal parts of ginger and turmeric, boil, and sweeten with honey!

4. Tone, Tone, Tone!

After the deep pore cleansing mask, you’re going to need to tone and hydrate your skin to allow blemishes to subside, or skin to rehydrate after festivities! Our JUARA Tamarind Tea Hydrating Toner is a skin soothing thirst quencher – with a chock full of oil-free hydrating ingredients including Tamarind and antioxidant teas.

5. Treat & Seal!

Once your skin is cleansed, purified and re-hydrated, it’s time for a concentrated super-juice infusion.  JUARA Clove Flower Turmeric Anti-Aging Serum is chock-full of botanicals to nurse stressed skin back to its balanced state.  Energize skin and lock in all that hydration with a Kombucha-based moisturizer, Sweet Black Tea & Rice Moisturizer for normal to dry skin, and  Sweet Black Tea & Ginger Oil-Free Moisturizer for oily to combination skin.  The sleep-deprived, delicate eye area will get extra TLC with JUARA Miracle Tea Complete Eye Creme.

Halloween may be a great reason to do a deep cleanse routine, but this is also a great any other time you have to wear lots of makeup, (aka for a stage, party, or everyday). Actually, whenever you feel the need for a love-my-skin recovery routine, feel free to give these steps a go so say bye to the “BOO!” in your skin and say hello to “YAY!”

 

You can see the JUARA products here.

The First JUARA Conference – Detroit. A Beautiful Community…

When you meet a diverse group of people who leave a warm feeling in your heart and mind, it’s worth talking about. After I returned home from the first ever JUARA conference in Detroit, I couldn’t stop talking about what a wonderful group of people were present, really “present”, and the feeling of happiness and comfort that I had felt there.  It’s that feeling you get when you meet people who exude a sense of acceptance, kindness, curiosity, growth, strength, and collaboration. Each person in Detroit exuded the character of a “champion” and that is hard to come by, but worth chasing and cultivating.

I have to first give thanks for what I have had the opportunity to experience in this lifetime. The partnership and support that I have received, and hopefully given, in just this skin care venture that has turned into a self care and self discovery adventure has made me feel blessed ten times over. Of course learning and growth are not without their stressors, and full of ups and downs, but I have learned that it is better when you are surrounded by strong, thoughtful, and scrupulous women and people. I experienced a taste of the same in Michigan.

Our gathering was of all ages, backgrounds and personality types.  We had come from states as disparate as Kentucky, California, and Connecticut. Daughters, nieces, cousins, long-time friends, even friends who had recently met over the internet, each person had made a commitment to teach and learn without judgement. Keynote Shandra Woworuntu’s dynamism and optimism started the meeting with inspiration as she shared her personal story of not only climbing out of a pit of despair and exploitation, but also working for others who have experienced the same plight. One might think ‘that’s a hard act to follow’, but the individual stories that were shared over the course of the day and weekend showed me that tenacity and heart is something that we all possess, and each story should be celebrated in its own right.
Andrea Bednar led us through discussion and self analysis, to better consider the meaning of wellness and self care to ourselves, but she also challenged us to set goals and attainable tasks to go home and continue the search and practice ourselves. Nancy Wilcox guided us on her journey of motherhood and sharing, showing us that sisterhood or personhood is possible beyond blood lines, and friendships can coexist with conscientious commitments.
And that is exactly what happened during our conference.  Guides reached across the table to work with each other and share tips; people gave and people received on equal footing. Being able to participate and be amongst such a dynamic, generous, and energetic group makes me feel more motivated to share, contribute, and help build. Truly getting to know everyone and experiencing the common bond of people working to improve themselves and their surroundings was an inspiring moment that I am sure we can recreate and multiply as time marches forward with this beautiful group!

How Oil Can Help Break-Out Prone Skin

Ever since I was a teenager with pimples all over my face, I was told to AVOID oil on my face at all cost.  Even today, our instinct is still to run away from oil, when we are battling break-outs.  At best, we look at a non-comedogenic oil as something that won’t make our problem worse provided of course we use it sparingly.  But can oils actually – GASP –  improve break-out prone skin…?  Let’s look at how an acne pimple is formed.

At the beginning of a break-out is a pore that’s clogged with a sticky combination of sebum (your own skin’s oil), dead skin cells (and maybe some other external debris), that forms a plug.  Add to the sticky plug the proliferation of acne bacteria, a.k.a. Cutibacterium Acnes, plus the resulting inflammation, and, voila:  You get a break-out!  How can an oil help when oil is part of the problem?

1.  The Role of Linoleic Acid (Omega-6 Essential Fatty Acid)

The presence of oil alone does not explain a break-out.  There are plenty of people with oily skin that don’t get break outs, and people with dry skin that do.  It turns out applying an oil rich in Linoleic Acid, which is an essential fatty acid, can help reduce break-outs.  Why?  It has been shown that the surface of break-out prone skin tends to be low in Linoleic Acid.  Interestingly, this is independent of having a Linoleic Acid deficiency inside your body.  Apparently the deficiency on the skin’s surface leads to your skin not self-exfoliating properly and dead skin cells accumulating inside the pore.  Hence applying Linoleic Acid aids the skin’s own pore-clearing process.  Oils high in Linoleic Acid include  Candlenut (Kukui) Oil, Passionfruit Oil, Hemp Oil, Rosehip Oil, Safflower Oil and Rice Bran Oil.

2.  The Role of Your Skin Barrier Function

Our skin barrier is our skin’s own defense structure, of which Linoleic Acid is a key component.  A weak skin barrier (which can be due to genetics, use of harsh products or hormonal changes) makes skin more prone to dryness, dehydration, irritation and inflammation, which in turn can make break-outs worse.  Imagine having break-out prone skin that is also dry and sensitive!  Applying an oil high in Linoleic Acid not only helps reduce the cause of break-outs themselves , it also strengthens the skin’s own defense structure, making it less vulnerable to external stressors and irritation.

3.  Targeting Acne Bacteria

While a number of moisturizing oils like Jojoba or Passionfruit have natural antibacterial properties and help balance skin flora, there are several essential oils that target the acne-causing Cutibacterium Acnes specifically.  The most famous one is Tea Tree Oil, but Lavender and Rosemary Oils have been shown effective as well and offer a natural alternative to salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide if you have mild acne.  If you have persistent break-outs or moderate to severe acne, however, it is best to also consult with a dermatologist.

So next time you are shopping for your skin wondering which products can help with break-outs, take a closer at those skin oils.  You might find one that will become your skin’s best friend!