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Aphrodisiacs…. With Love this Valentines Day x

14 Feb


Rebecca Goodyear shares pampering ideas and more with us this Valentines Day

 

An aphrodisiac by definition is something that increases sexual desire. Objects may be considered aphrodisiacal because of the way they look (some aphrodisiacs resemble sexual organs – oysters and bananas for example) or because of their physical composition and the effect certain ingredients have the on body as well as taste, feel and smell. The word aphrodisiac comes from the Greek goddess of sexuality and love, Aphrodite.

 

There are many weird and wonderful aphrodisiacs from all around the world, including Birds Nest Soup, literally made from an Asian Swift’s birds nest, Dog and Wolf meat in the Philippines (sorry I couldn’t sacrifice my precious Mimi for all the sex in the world!) and even Deer Penis Wine, popular with Chinese, Japanese and Korean men. Sadly, so strong is man’s desire to achieve sexual arousal through such animals who walk this earth with us we have seen some animals become endangered, such as tigers, rhinos and turtles (turtle eggs are aphrodisiacs in Mexican tradition and hunting for the eggs has led to a decline in population.)

 

Welcome to the Valentines Day special! In this feature I am going to take you through an at home spa treatment, not exclusively for couples, you can always recreate for yourself, your friends or treat your family. I have also put together some ideas for an aphrodisiacal menu to leave any couples in the mood for love this Valentines Day, as well as not too bloated for their treatment! You can read more about the aphrodisiacal qualities of the ingredients and obtain full recipes for the food dishes as well as some more beauty recipes on my blog, Biteable Beauty – http://www.biteablebeauty.com

 

At Home Spa Treatment

 

Hot Chocolate Mud Bath

 

Ingredients

 

200g Dark Chocolate

4 Cups Whole Milk

 

Optional – Ground Spices such as Cinnamon or Ginger,

Oils such as Vanilla, Rose or Almond

 

If you’re lucky enough to have a bath, you can make like Cleopatra but with a chocolatey twist and bathe in milk. Those without a bath can proceed to the next recipe. The Aztecs referred to chocolate as “Nourishment of the Gods”. Dark chocolate is packed full of antioxidants and has more anti-cancer enzymes that red wine. Chocolate when eaten releases a neurotransmitter called phenylethylamine also know as the love drug as it reduces stress, improves mood and quickens the pulse creating a feeling like that of being in love. So make sure you have a nibble whilst preparing the bath! Cleopatra reportedly bathed in milk to keep her skin soft and there is some science behind this. Lactic acid contains alpha-hydroxy acids (you may have seen AHA written on beauty products) which encourages exfoliation naturally and therefore removal of dead skin cells.

 

To make, simply heat the milk in a milk pan with pouring lip. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of boiling water then add to the hot milk. Pour under running water and finally add any spices or oils of your choice. Enjoy the bath for at least 20 minutes for best results and follow up with a body scrub to remove any dead skin cells the AHA has loosened.

 

Cinnamon and Ginger Body Scrub

 

Ingredients

 

1 Cup Brown Sugar

¼ Cup Honey

¼ to ½ cup Sweet Almond Oil

1 tbsp Freshly Grated Ginger (or ½ tbsp ground)

1 tbsp Freshly Grated Cinnamon (or ½ tbsp ground)

8 drops Vanilla Essential Oil

 

Cinnamon has been used traditionally as an aphrodisiac to stimulate sexual desire in men, even referenced in the bible where a seductress lured her prey to a bed strewn with cinnamon! Some studies have proven men to be attracted to the scent of cinnamon in…. baked goods! Considered a sultry base note, cinnamon has been used in perfumes since ancient times Ginger improves circulation and is therefore said to enhance sensitivity in the erogenous zones whilst the scent of vanilla is believed to increase lust. In Egyptian times many formulas to cure impotency and infertility were based around honey, hopefully you won’t need honey for this reason!

 

To make, simply mix the brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon and honey in a bowl. Once well mixed, pour in bit by bit the sweet almond oil until the brown sugar if saturated. Finally, add the vanilla essential oil and give a final mix.

 

To use, simply take a small amount in your hands and apply, I usually start with the arms, move on to the body then the legs and finally the feet. Rinse away with warm water to reveal softer, sexy scented skin!

 

Rhassoul Clay

 

Rhassoul Clay is a special clay from Morocco, high quality and mineral packed. Not an aphrodisiac, but it’s lots of fun getting covered in it and not as messy as you might think! It is gentle enough to use from head to toe, even on sensitive or dry skin conditions, although I would always recommend doing a patch test on the back of your neck or wrist to check for any allergic reaction (particularly to sulphur). Widely available on the internet, I buy mine in bulk from Sadie at Greenwich Market, also available online at www.rawbeautyonline.com

 

To use, simply mix the clay with tepid water to make a paste. I use a paint brush to apply all over. Start with the head and hair, then the face and finally the body. Leave on for 10 minutes then rinse off with warm water.

 

Now it’s time to do the feet. First prepare two small hot towels per foot by spraying with water, or scented water if you like. Then roll them up and place in a metal colander above a pan of boiling water for a couple of minutes. Take of the heat and cover to retain as much heat as possible. Now apply rhassoul clay paste all over the feet, ensuring any dry patches get a good covering. Wrap the feet in towels and leave for ten minutes. Now remove the towels, taking off the clay with them and using a second towel if necessary. Now it’s time for the final stage of the spa treatment, the body massage.

 

Body Massage Oil Blend for Her

 

This is a sensual blend of flower essential oils. Jasmine is a confidence booster, Ylang Ylang has an uplifting effect on the emotions and its sweet distinct aroma acts as a catalyst to fuel passion. Rose is said to reduce anxiety connected to sex and calm emotions that block arousal.

 

Ingredients

 

100ml Sweet Almond Carrier Oil

5 drops Jasmine Essential Oil

5 drops Ylang Ylang Essential Oil

2 drops Rose Essential Oil

2 drops Vanilla Essential Oil

 

Body Massage Oil Blend for Him

 

A manly massage oil to get him in the mood! Basil has been used for centuries to stimulate sex drive and boost fertility. It improves circulation therefore promote enhanced sensitivity in the erogenous zones. Lemon is uplifting and refreshing whilst black pepper is stimulating and energising. Pepper also contains piperine, which according to ancient beliefs can stimulate sexual function.

 

Ingredients

 

100ml Sweet Almond Carrier Oil

5 drops Basil Essential Oil

5 drops Lemon Essential Oil

2 drop Black Pepper Essential Oil

 

To make simply place the carrier oil in a dark glass bottle (to prevent from going rancid prematurely) add the essential oil drops, put the lid on and shake well.

 

Now you may not be the best masseuse in the world, but here are a few tips to help you give the best massage you possibly can –

 

  • Set the scene – relaxing music, natural scented candles, clean scented sheets will all add to the experience

  • make sure your nails are smooth

  • warm the massage oil bottles in a bowl of warm water, make sure this is within close reach as you will need to oil up several times

  • make sure you and your partner have a drink close by to sip, water or wine

  • cover your partner with a towel or if you have a silk sheet even better. Move the cover down as you work your way down the body

  • always stay in contact with your partner’s body once you begin the massage

  • never apply the oil directly to your partner’s skin, always rub between your hands to warm before applying

  • be gentle! Remember you are not there to give a deep tissue sports massage or work out any knots, leave that to the professionals. You are giving a relaxing, sensual massage aiming to get your partner in the mood!

Do Something Romantic – Whatever your Budget

Broke

It’s true, some of the best things in life are free! Take advantage of England’s famous green spaces and go for a walk in the great outdoors, Whether you go to a park, escape to the countryside or even go on an urban walk. A romantic walk is the perfect way to reconnect with your partner and remember what it was that first attracted you to them.

Budget

Get away to a spa for a day,or even just an afternoon treatment. There are lots of offers to be found on sites such as lastminute.com and Groupon so even the smallest of budgets will find something. We went to The Spa, Dolphin Square, London and experienced a Hamam and a Moroccan Majorelle. It was excellent all round. The service was impeccable, the décor extremely tasteful and the treatments were simply wonderful. I left with smooth, soft skin and hair and the full body massage alleviated all the tension in my shoulders and back. For prices and more information go to www.dolphinsquare.co.uk For my full write up visit www.biteablebeauty.comImage

Bling

Escape for a weekend away to an eco-friendly chic retreat. Again, keep your eyes open for deals online. We are heading to The Cottage Lodge in Brockenhurst, for more information and prices visit www.cottagelodge.co.uk Powered by renewable energy sources and the food is responsibly sourced and local produce used wherever possible. Check my blog for how we got on there.

Image

Menu Plan

 

Starter

 

Oysters

or

Asparagus and Mozzarella wrapped in Prosciutto

or

Asparagus and Poached Egg (V)

 

Main Course

 

Filet Mignon served with a Mustard and Peppercorn Sauce

or

Chicken and Avocado Salad

or

Truffle Risotto (v)

 

Dessert

 

Chocolate Pots with Espresso Whipped Cream

or

Raspberries and Strawberries with Whipped Cream

or

Figs

 

 

Drinks

 

Remember to drink in moderation, a couple of glasses of wine or champagne if you’re feeling plush is fine but any more and you could find yourself too drowsy for the after dinner activity!

 

A small espresso after dinner can also help stimulate the body and mind but not too much else it will act as a depressant.

 

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Roll up Roll up!

1 Feb

Simply Beautiful is back!

We would love to hear your thoughts on our new Spring Issue!

If you haven’t already got a copy, head down to your local WH Smith’s or visit www.free.yudu.com for a digital copy.

Be sure to read our fantastic features on how to Get Snow Fit, Detox Retreat, and an interview with our latest member of the Simply Beautiful team – Janey Lee Grace!

You can also be sure to find wonderful projects in our Spring issue to help your skin in the cold weather.

 

 

We have some great competitions on offer too! With all this and more, what are you waiting for?

Happy Reading!

SB Team x

 

 

 

Preview of the Spring Issue!

19 Jan

We have been working hard on the Spring Issue and it’s looking great – so good in fact, we thought we’d share with you a sneaky peek through the issue!

Shoshana Moskowitz from Karuna Detox Retreats reveals the secrets to the perfect detox.

We show you that the Kitchen is a treasure trove of goodies when making homemade beauty products

Julie Cousins shows us how to banish dehydrated skin

We also welcome Janey Lee Grace to the team and in this issue we take time out to chat to her!

With all this AND our regular product reviews, competitions and news be sure to grab your copy out in the shops NOW!

Happy Reading!

Helen x

Planning a Christmas Wedding?

26 Oct

Although the majority of brides and grooms-to-be still opt to get married in the summer, increasing numbers are choosing winter months to tie the knot, and I think it can be a really magical time.

In the December issue of Simply Beautiful, Charlie Burton from The Natural Wedding Company, shares her wonderful tips on how to plan a eco, and purse friendly winter wedding.

Image by Mark Tattersall

Covering everything from themes and colours, venues, the dress, suit and bridesmaids to how to prepare for bad weather, this feature will give you tons of ideas on how to create the perfect day.

Charlie also explores how to get the best seasonal food, flowers and decorations to ensure your venue looks stunningly beautiful, all while caring for the environment.

The December issue is in production as I type so it’s all go here – I’ll let you know when it’s available in WH Smith’s, it’s going to be a really great issue!

SB Team x

Thoughts turning to party season…

17 Oct

Ok, so I know I’m a super early, but me and the girls in the Simply Beauty office are already talking about those festive parties, starting to think about what we’re going to wear and how we’re going to do our hair and make-up, eeekkk – I just love that time of year!

Here’s a sneak peak at the shoot!

The reason for us getting way too excited this early is because we work on a magazine and we have to work a few months ahead, so we’ve just completed our Christmas issue which included a brilliant shoot with our new make-up artist Kirsty Lord who’s showing a step-by-step guide to a gorgeous party look that we can’t wait to try out. (So we do have a good excuse to get Christmassy early!)

This will be featured in our December issue, so won’t be out for a while but I’ll remind you nearer the time – it really is one not to be missed! We’re also working on lots of lovely projects that you can try to have a natural (and cheap!) Christmas, making unique gifts for your nearest and dearest.

But for now, if you’re starting to feel the cold, why not pop along to WH Smith’s and pick up the November issue of Simply Beautiful to try your hand at a wonderful facial steaming recipe and a gorgeous warming tropical face and body wash – both great now the days are turning colder?

SB Team x

Cornish Beauties!

14 Oct

If you’re anything like me and are starting to realise just what exactly is being put into the harmful and chemically filled, over priced high street products on the shelves today which always seem to fail to deliver what they promise, then carry on reading!

My skin isn’t too bad but I, like many others, am prone to break outs and over the years have noticed a change in my skin type. In my teenage years it didn’t seem to be too much of a problem but now I have noticed as I get older that I suffer from dry patches and yet oily patches in other areas. But all the high street brands that have promised me the world have been used to no avail. Nothing seems to work to combat all these aspects.

Having researched organic skincare products over the months for our pages, I have discovered a little gem, which I’m sure many of you have already unearthed.

Spiezia Organics was founded in the 1990’s and were one of the first organic farms to be established in Cornwall, being the original company in the UK to have Soil Association accreditation across 100% of there range. All their packaging is made from 100% recycled products which meet the high standards of the association.

I have tried their facial cleanser and toner and I really love how it makes my skin feel – I noticed a difference as soon as I put the cleanser on. It smells gorgeous and is of a light consistency which is easily absorbed into my skin. I wipe the cleanser off with a warm cloth and treat my skin to the toner and follow up with moisturiser.

Since using it for a good few weeks, I’m still hooked on the products from the first time of using them. My skin has dramatically improved and has evened out, my skin feels smooth and looked after. I have even had comments saying how much better my skin looks.

When I think about the beauty of Cornwall, it doesn’t surprise me just how many organic skin care companies are operating there. The fresh and rugged natural landscape and the clean air makes my head dizzy!

With nature in abundance and the laid back lifestyle, I certainly miss living there and still hold Cornwall dear to my heart. I really don’t think I could move away from Spiezia now. I really enjoy using their range and it feels good to know I am still able to support Cornish living. I love having my own little bottle of Cornwall with me in my bathroom cabinet everyday!

Helen x

http://www.spieziaorganics.com

Hello world!

13 Oct

Welcome to the Simply Beautiful magazine blog!

Make sure you visit here regularly to keep up-to-date with all of or latest natural beauty news, views and projects to try at home.

Simply Beautiful magazine is aimed at anyone who wants to live a more natural lifestyle, whilst caring for their skin and hair without loading it up with harsh chemicals. As awareness increases about the ingredients used in everyday items, as well as the growing demand for ethically sourced products, Simply Beautiful shows you how to buy quality, natural products as well as offering useful beauty tips and tricks.

Each issue includes industry experts advice on a wide variety of subjects and includes a section of easy to follow projects, showing you how to make your own natural beauty products.

Each issue includes a mix of articles including; hair care, male grooming, beauty foods, cosmetics, alternative therapies, natural children’s products, celebrity interviews and much, much more.

Simply Beautiful is a really innovative and vibrant magazine. Not only are we offering you everything you need to know about living a more natural lifestyle, but we also have at least 10 simple and effective recipes in each issue, so everyone can try making their own homemade beauty products. This combined with quality features on a wide range of topics written by beauty experts allows you to find the best way to adopt a more natural lifestyle.