As you might have read in my previous posts, I am super into essential oils and I love incorporating them into my daily routines. My go-to brand is Rocky Mountain Oils, and they’ve just released a new line of products called Ava Shield that I was lucky enough to test-drive earlier this month. The Ava Shield line is a collection of non-toxic household products infused with RMO’s natural essential oils. They’re meant to replace products you currently use in your home that are full of chemicals and other yucky stuff. My boyfriend and I tried using three of the new Ava Shield items in our home this month. Check out what we thought below!
Click HERE to shop the Ava Shield line from Rocky Mountain Oils. Until January 24, if you order the starter pack (with all three Ava Shield products) you'll receive a discounted price of $34.97 plus a second hand soap for free. Click HERE for more information on this sale. Woohooo!
Ava Shield Foaming Hand Soap
We’ve been using this hand soap in our bathroom and it smells sooo delicious. We think it’s like a mix of cinnamon and mint. It’s subtle and not at all overpowering, but I love smelling my hands after I wash with it. I like that rather than using harsh chemicals it contains RMO’s immune strength blend of oils (I think that’s what gives it the yummy scent). My only complaint is that this is a foaming soap, so I can’t pour it into our decorative soap dispenser. I like our soap to look a little nicer than just the plastic bottle it comes in. But other than that, this is a great product! And they do sell hand soap refills on the site too, so you can keep reusing the container.
Click HERE to shop
Ava Shield Cool Mint Toothpaste
This toothpaste whitens and cleans teeth without the chemicals found in traditional toothpaste, and it’s infused with RMO’s peppermint and spearmint oil. It tastes great and seems to get the job done, even though this paste doesn’t foam up as much as the ones I’m used to. The packaging is also super sturdy, so it can stand up in your medicine cabinet or on your countertop without falling over. UPDATE: I bought a second tube of this because I really did like it!
Click HERE to shop
Ava Shield Hard Surface Cleaner Concentrate
This stuff smells really good! Not at all like bleach or chemicals, but like yummy essential oils. I used it to clean the toilet and it left it shiny and white, and it didn’t feel harsh on my hands. I felt a lot better breathing this in as opposed to the cleaning sprays I usually use. FYI if you want to use it for your countertops, etc. you need to dilute it with water – it might be easiest to make a batch of mixture ahead of time in a plastic or glass spray bottle so that it’s ready to go when you need it. I do really love the smell of this stuff and it makes me feel good to know that I’m not wiping chemicals all over our countertops where we prepare food. I have wanted to create my own natural cleaning spray for a while now, but this premade solution saves me the work! This was my favorite product out of all of them and I will definitely order more when this bottle runs out. If you are able to try just one of these three new items, this would be the one I'd recommend.
Click HERE to shop
*This post contains affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will receive a small commission for any orders placed. All opinions are my own. I endorse RMO because I believe in the products they sell.
We had a lot of blank wall space over our bed and recently I was trying to think of something easy to hang (we rent so we prefer not to drill holes in the walls) that would spruce up the space. I came up with this super simple DIY and we are so happy with how it turned out. You could really use any word you want - we chose "rest" because that's kind of what our bed is, a restful place to end each day (or to spend a day - depending how cold it is on the weekends). I added a strand of wire LED lights after I took down our Christmas tree because I wanted to keep the pretty, glowing effect somewhere in our apartment. Check out how to make this DIY below. If you give it a try, let me know what word or phrase you use in the comments below. Happy crafting!
Supplies You'll Need:
-Wooden Letters (I found mine at Target)
-Paint color of your choice (I used a dark blue/grey)
-Newspaper or Paper Towels (to cover work surface)
-3M Command Strips (to hang on wall)
-LED wire string lights (optional)
1) After covering your workspace, use the foam brush to cover letters (front and sides but no need to worry about the backside) with paint. Let dry and repeat with a second coat.
2) Once the letters have completely dried, use a sheet of sandpaper to gently distress the edges by rubbing off some of the paint. I didn't distress the entire edge of each letter - just small patches throughout to give it a naturally weathered look.
3) Now your beautifully distressed letters are ready to be hung! We centered ours over our bed and used 3M Command Strips to hang since we can't put holes in our walls. Drape with string lights if you want some extra sparkle! Now it's time to rest ;).
Does anyone else have a mound of sweaters piled on the floor in their bedroom? I can’t be the only one! ;) They’re too heavy or fragile to put on hangers and too bulky to fit in my dresser drawers, so they end up wrinkled and balled up on the floor. One of my goals this January is to get my closet a little more organized. I want it to be easy to find what I need and to put back items when I’m done with them, so I’m working on getting things folded and neatly stored with a new shelf from Target! I think getting organized is a great way to start the new year – so for today’s Friday Fix, I’m sharing my favorite home/office storage and organization items I’ve seen online. Enjoy and happy organizing!
Wallies Removable Chalkboard Panels
I love these!! They can stick anywhere (without damaging walls) and would look adorable over a desk, next to an entryway, or in a kitchen. Plus it comes with chalk so you're ready to go! A cute way to have your weekly schedule or important reminders right where everyone can see it.
Available at Paper Source, $19.95 each
RÅSKOG Utility Cart
I love the look of utility carts, and they can be used for so many different things! This one from IKEA is super cute - it could be used as kitchen storage, a bedside table, craft supply storage, or even toy/book storage in a kid's room. Affordable and stylish!
Available at Ikea, $24.99
Ashland Large Metal Wire Basket
I love baskets like this because they look cute but it's easy to see what is inside them. I think these would look adorable stacked on a living room shelf and full of blankets, magazines, books, and movies. They would also be great in a closet to store hats, gloves, tights, socks, and scarves. Plus they're on sale right now!!
Available at Michaels, $17.49 SALE
Jute Laundry Basket
Since my hamper is visible in our bedroom, I recently upgraded it to a nicer style (I was still using my white mesh collapsible hamper from my college dorm days... yikes!). It just makes me feel better looking at it! I LOVE this style from H&M's home collection. It is roomy, but not too roomy (which encourages you to do laundry more often) and will look great in any room. It would also be nice in a bathroom for towels, etc.
Available at H&M, $34.99
Hearth & Hand Document Box with Faux Leather
I love getting rid of clutter, especially old mail, papers, bills, and other (boring) stuff like that. Unfortunately, as I've come to learn, adults have to hang onto some documents "just in case." This little box is a chic way to store all of that paperwork so that it's there when you need it, without cluttering up your space.
Available at Target, $17.99
Every January I notice lots of ads and articles about reinventing ourselves in the New Year. It’s supposed to make us feel ambitious, but in the end I think it actually makes us feel like we’re not good enough. In my opinion, New Year’s Resolutions should be simple and fun, and make us feel better, not stress us out. So… *drumroll please...* here they are, my “flexible, no pressure” New Year’s Resolutions for 2018! If I don't stick to them 100%, that's okay. They're just a few little things I want to try throughout the year. No stress! ;)
1) Start more mornings with lemon water. I constantly read how great this is for your body but I tend to just have a few sips from my water bottle before heading out the door on my commute, and then drink a big mug of decaf coffee once I get to work. This year, I definitely want to try to take a minute or two when I get up in the mornings to detox my system with a small cup of warm water with lemon. I think I can achieve this by prepping lemon slices the night before so that all I have to do in the morning is heat up some water (I am NOT a morning person). It doesn’t have to be every single day, but some days is better than none!
2) Stand up and stretch more during the workday. Don’t even get me started on how outdated the concept of being glued to a desk at work for eight hours a day, five days a week is. I could rant for hours. I hope, for everyone’s sake, that future workplaces will offer more flexible hours, more work from home options, and a bigger focus on employee wellness (both physical and mental) and work/life balance. Because trudging to work and sitting in a cubicle all day every day sucks, no matter how much you enjoy your job. Since I can’t quit that 9-5 grind right now, one of my goals for this year is to make sure I stand up, stretch, move around, and take breaks regularly throughout my workdays. Because I am more than my productivity and my health and well-being matters!!
3) Incorporate more color into my wardrobe. Particularly for winter, when I look at my wardrobe it’s a sea of grey. I can’t help it! In the colder weather I always tend to gravitate towards dark colors. It makes getting dressed for work pretty simple – I know that most things will go together – and I feel like dark colors in winter always look chic. But, it can get kind of boring. So, this year I’m challenging myself to be brave and try something new by experimenting with more color in my clothing, even if it’s just a scarf or a sweater once a week (I sense a potential blog post idea brewing). Because it’s fun to shake things up once in a while!
4) Be kinder to myself. I think a lot of women probably have this problem and I doubt it will go away anytime soon, but I tend to be super critical of myself and what I do. We’re always striving to do more, be more, do better, move faster… it’s exhausting! And it’s just not worth it. This resolution will be extremely hard for me to keep but I definitely need to remind myself that no one is perfect and that it’s okay to make mistakes, forget something, have embarrassing moments, oversleep, stutter during a meeting, and have bad hair/outfit days. Because modern life is exhausting and it’s impossible to have it 100% together at all times. I shouldn’t beat myself up over little things like that. My mantra for this is “Be kind to yourself.” I worry so much about being kind to others – why don’t I worry as much about being kind to myself?
So, those are my resolutions for 2018. If I can successfully follow these even 50% of the time, I'll be happy. If you have any “flexible, no pressure” resolutions you’re trying out this year, let me know in the comments below! Happy New Year, everyone!
My name is Abby Formella and I'm a 26 year-old working girl living in the lovely borough of Brooklyn, New York.