Vegan Gifts

Vegan Gift Ideas

What to get a vegan for their birthday?  This question comes up over and over from my non vegan friends.  It isn’t that difficult once you know a few ground rules and this article will certainly get you off in the right direction.  Take the time to read it fully – you might be surprised and possibly a little shocked!

Best Gift Ideas for Vegans

Vegans generally like the exact same as anyone else only in the vegan version!   Chocolate, perfume, handbags, skincare are all readily available on Amazon in the vegan category.  It is easy – don’t stress!

 

What exactly is Vegan?  Is vegan the same as vegetarian?

Well not quite – the difference being:

Vegetarians do not eat any poultry, meat or fish, vegans take it further by eliminating milk , anything made from milk and eggs.

Vegans do not eat, wear or use any product derived from an animal or creature.

A lot of these vegan NO’s exist in the least suspecting place so I have complied a guide to help you make the right buying choice for your vegan friend.

Read the section on what not to buy to be super informed! https://mrssowandsow.com/what-not-to-buy-a-vegan/

You will be surprised and probably shocked at what actually goes into some of the most popular perfume and aftershave brands!

From chocolate to skincare we help to navigate you in the right direction to finding the perfect gift.  Kitchen appliances are high on the wish list too,  think Spiralizers, Crock Pots and Slow Cookers – most vegans love to cook and are quite adventurous in the kitchen so kitchenware is a great option.

Gift buying can be stressful enough never mind adding the vegan element but don’t worry these choices are perfect.  I am a vegan and any of these would make me very happy!  So no wandering around trying to find just the right thing,

Vegan Chocolate, vegan cheese, vegan perfume!

Amazon have a great selection of gift ideas for vegans from chocolate to perfume and even shoes.  What about making up a hamper to make it more personalized?  You could focus on the food element with all the vegan choices to choose from or buy one of the numerous ready made gourmet chocolate hampers or snack boxes.  They are filled with a fantastic variety – you may want one yourself!    There are lots of options to choose from here Delicious Vegan Hampers – buying for your vegan friend is easy when you know how!

Another idea is to create a lovely skincare or spa experience hamper.  You can create your own – buy a pretty box or basket and add scented candles, vegan bath bombs,  vegan body lotion, pretty organic face cloths, eye mask – the ideas are endless.  You can also buy a ready made hamper Vegan Skincare Sets – lots of inspiration!

 

 

Every one loves a bath bomb and there are so many choices out there.  A bath bomb should be a beautiful sensory experience.  You can choose organic, 100% natural, infused with essential oils and suited to age or skin types.  They just smell beautiful too and really infuse the bathroom adding to that spa like atmosphere.  Do try and choose the natural varieties as they are so much better for the skin and void of any nasties.  Your skin absorbs 60% of what goes onto it so always choose natural.  To get inspro – here you go! Vegan Bath Bombs

 

My Vegan Skincare Gift Recommendations

I love this hamper Ora’s Herbal Skincare, all natural, vegan and no parabens.  It is formulated with gorgeous effective ingredients packed with vitamins – a real tonic for the skin. Rose hip, hibiscus, sea buckthorn, evening primrose, pomegranate are just some of the premium ingredients to be found in this luxury brand.  This is a wonderful indie company that really cares about the quality of the products and their customer.  Ticking another box is the fact that their beautiful packaging is recycled.  Ora’s sell individual products too so that is also an option depending on your budget. Ora’s Collection

 

Gifts for the vegan man

Lots of Vegan Man Ideas Here!

Amazon have lots of inspiration, here a a couple pf my favourites.

I love this Company!  It is another Indie brand that is now selling all over the world. Brickell Mens Skincare is owned by two brothers that wanted to create a high performing natural mens skincare brand using only potent effective ingredients that deliver results.  Items can also be purchased as individual products and are available for all skin types.  Men have skin issues too and this is a great brand to get them started or to change to.  Another great vegan gift idea for the man in your life is this fantastic Vegan Wallet,  it is handmade and precision stitched to last for years.  The wallet is available in a variety of colours too and for the quality and craftmanship the price is fantastic.  Have a look at this luxurious Italian designed travel drop down Toiletry Bag  It just has luxurious written all over it but yet so well priced.  Those delicious snack boxes as mentioned above will be a sure hit with your vegan man too!

 

Perfume, Pure, Vegan, Perfect.

 

Fuss Free Vegan Cook Book- A Great Gift

Vegan Cookery Books are another great idea when gift buying.  I purposely did not choose the best seller as there is a good chance your friend will have it.  This one is a fantastic resource –  101 everyday comfort foods veganized, sounds good!  There are literally hundreds available on Amazon from everyday foods to vegan desserts – you might be in for a nice dinner after this buy!

 

Hand Crafted Gourmet Truffles,  what is not to love?

Perfect Gift! Vegan Truffles – shop here

You can never go wrong with chocolates!  These gourmet truffles are just one of a very large range of tempting and totally gorgeous vegan chocolates and truffles.  Amazon have literally sackfuls of delightful chocolates, candies and snacks of every kind.  I don’t know one vegan that wouldn’t thank you for a bag of goodies or a box of decadence!   The vegan hamper below is packed with chips, chocolate, candy, bars, nuts all healthy, all vegan and all delicious.

Shop here: Vegan Snack Hamper Packed with Goodies
Doc Martens Vegan & Unisex! Shop here

Vegan shoes!  The link above is to the iconic classic Doc Marten’s but on Amazon alone you will find lots of styles and brands.  There are some really nice sneakers,  just put vegan shoes, sneakers or whatever style you are after in the search bar and you will amazed with the choice.  Handbags, satchels, luggage and belts are all catered for in the vegan ranges – just use the word vegan in your search term.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Himalayan Salt Products for Health Benefits.

What is Himalayan Salt?

Himalayan Salt is raw and unrefined with all it’s goodness including 84 trace minerals still intact. This miraculous salt is uncontaminated by chemical process or environmental pollutants and has nothing in common with the table salt. 

The structure of the Himalayan salt is unique and is actually a crystal in form. It stores energy and vibrations that have a positive impact in balancing our bodies.

This pink rock salt does not come from the Himalayas as commonly believed but is sourced from the Khewra Salt Mine in Pakistan.  The location is 300 miles west of the Himalayan Mountains!  The mine has been providing salt for over 2000 years.

 

What are the Health Benefits of Himalayan Salt

The benefits of this pink rock salt are numerous for health, well being and vitality.

 Below is  a list of 26 commonly held beliefs on this miraculous salt.

  1. It regulates blood pressure. 
  2. Helps cells absorb nutrients.
  3. Provides minerals and electrolytes essential to the nervous system.
  4. Improves hydration.
  5. Detoxifies.
  6. Balances the PH level by raising alkaline in your body. 
  7. Improves respiratory system. 
  8. Promotes good blood sugar levels. 
  9. Powerful anti histamine
  10. Supports thyroid and adrenal function to release and regulate hormones. 
  11. Supports the nervous system,
  12. Supports metabolism and digestion. 
  13. Supports nervous system and its ability to communicate throughout the body. 
  14. Supports hormone balance.
  15. Reduces muscle cramps.
  16. Improves inflammatory skin conditions, psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema 
  17. Reduces signs of ageing with anti oxidant benefits.
  18. Reduces Asthma.
  19. Increases bone strength.
  20. Aids vascular health
  21. Increases better absorption in the digestive tract. 
  22. Aids weigh loss by balancing hormones
  23. Clears post natal drip.
  24. Recommended for sinus and congestion issues. 
  25. Raises the libido.
  26. Helps with sleep pattern.

 

Not All Salts Are The Same

Salt gets bad press and quite rightly so when we are talking about table salt. Your standard table salt has undergone a chemical process stripping it of minerals and adding anti caking agents, iodine and in some countries fluoride!   

WARNING  Himalayan Salt does contain SODIUM so AVOID if you have HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE OR OTHER ASSOCIATED HEALTH CONDITIONS. E.G. HEART DISEASE.  Always check with your doctor if you are not sure of sodium impact on your condition. 

 

How can you use Himalayan Salt for it’s benefits?

There are lots of ways to reap the benefits of Himalayan Salt simply,  just incorporate some of the following into your every day life.

  • It can be used on your food as a salt.
  • It can be used as bath salts
  • Detox Slabs for your feet
  • Himalayan block walls 
  • Body Scrubs
  • Salt Lamp.

We will look at these suggestions and the benefits in more

Himalayan Foot Slabs

This seems to be the new kid on the Himalayan block, no pun intended!  These blocks are literally 100% pure Himalayan salt. They are for detoxing, grounding and relaxing via the foot.

Simply heat gently in the oven for a short period just enough to warm the block up.  Sit back, relax and place your feet on the slabs for 15 minutes or so.  Just feel the pains ease after a long day at work.  This will help boost circulation and improve the quality of your sleep.  The energy on the slabs is consistent with the earths energy to will help to balance your body.  How interesting is that!

Go Bare Foot In The Garden

The best way to reduce stress is to spend time in nature – to get grounded go a few minutes walking barefoot around your garden every day.  If you have no garden and can’t get to the park everyday, no excuse!  The Himalayan foot slabs are the perfect indoor answer and can be incorporated into your day with ease.

You can read, watch your favorite show and still have the time to get grounded,  all you need to do is put your feet on the gently warmed slabs.  These are perfect if you happen to own a spa – how good would it be to offer your client an additional service while they are having a pedicure or manicure.  They will be feel instantly more relaxed and have a more enhanced experience.  Share this post with your nail/spa – they will appreciate it.  You can pick these up on Amazon from approx $16 to $18 which is a fantastic price for something that will really help your wellbeing.

What do Himalayan Salt Lamps do?

Why is everyone getting a Himalayan Salt Lamp and what exactly for?

Modern life whilst it comes with the many advantages of technology it also carries with it a lot of disadvantages.  We are surrounded in our homes and our work places with EMF’s.  Electro Magnetic Fields.  What are EMF’S, I hear you say – In lay mans terms it could be described as all the radiation that comes from electrical devices.

What is wrong with EMF’S?

There is a belief that all these modern day devices also emit a lot of positive ions that cause a host of negative biological responses.  For example,  headaches, fatigue, stress, immune problems and some say cancers.  You may have heard of sick building syndrome – well this is what the result is.

himalayan salt lamps for therapy
Just one of a selection available on Amazon, Click Image to Shop

Human beings were not supposed to be surrounded by all this technology but rather living closer to nature.  You do know that cell phone and TV never mind the smart meter and everything else around you is as far from nature as intended.  There is a consequence for this.

We need to get out in nature more and bring as much nature into our homes and work places.  We need to reduce these damaging positive ions as much as we can.  Now to combat all of the onslaught from technology we would have to live as a caveman – I don’t think this is going to happen anytime soon – so what’s the next best thing.

Himalayan Lamps Can Help

Himalayan Lamps are not going to solve this problem but they can help and every little does help!  They emit the negative ions to counteract positive damaging ions – obviously they are not going to be strong enough to completely eradicate your home but as I said every little helps.  Try Peace Lilies too near your computer – they will also aid in the war against EMF’s.

Another advantage of Salt Lamps is helping to clean the air of pollutants,  this is another aid for asthma and allergy sufferer’s. so why not try!

So far we have help reducing our sick homes/work places,  Himalayan salt lamps are cleaning up our air to reduce all that pollen and nasties floating around.  In Japan and other areas of Asia they do know a thing or two about natural health and salt lamps are commonly used.

Now we get to breathing better, sleeping better, performing mentally better, increasing our energy, good gracious what is not to like!

How does it all work,  well if you are like me and really just want to know IF it works or is it all baloney but don’t really want to read all the scientific findings etc,  you know, just get to the point kind of info – well here is the gist of it!

Negative ions restore balance to a more healthy state and Himalayan Salt Lamps produce negative ions – chasing away all those bad positive ones.  The negative ions help protect your health in a number of ways through their cleansing, anti bacterial and mood enhancing properties.  If NASA uses them well that is evidence enough for me!

Apart from all the health benefits and sciencey info- (yes new word) the lamps just look fantastic.  They have a beautiful soft glow and sit nice anywhere, bedroom, desk , lounge, dining table – aesthetically pleasing and beneficial – now what more could you want!  (I know,  one for every room)!

The lamps come in lots of different design so see which you like best,  the fire bowl ones looks amazing too.  The pair pictured above are available on Amazon at $18 which I think is a total bargain.

Salt Inhaler Benefits

The Salt Inhaler is a must for sinus sufferer’s and those that have nasal congestion issues.

  • Combats allergies and sinus problems
  • Naturally improves your health
  •  Alleviating sneezing, coughing, and shortness of breath helping to breathe better
  • Helps clear congestion

What is a Himalayan Salt Wall?

The salt slabs or blocks are used to create a therapeutic space which can enhance treatments in Spa’s or indeed in your home.

salt wall slabs
Build your own salt wall for therapy, shop here

Top spa’s all over the world are offering treatments and salt wall sauna experiences are hugely popular.

The healing properties of salt rooms have been recognized for centuries.  Monks in Medieval Times used to take the sick to salt caves so they could breathe in the particles.

You could easily create a beautiful zen room in your home or bathroom and enjoy these benefits easily.  If you are in the Spa business – this is a fantastic opportunity to offer your clients another really beneficial treatment and add to your list of services.  These slabs are available on Amazon.

 

How to Use a Salt Cooking Block

himalayan cooking block slabs
Himalayan Cooking Block $32 on Amazon

Salt Cooking blocks have become so popular as not only are they a fantastic cooking aid to have in the kitchen but they are also so versatile.  They impart flavour naturally and can be used in a number of ways.

How Do You Use a Salt Cooking Block?

The blocks can be used to heat or slowly cook any number of veg or meats over a slow low heat.  They can be used to keep foods cool also – they just need to be cooled in the fridge first and then can be taken out to aid you outside in the barbecue keeping other foods cool.  Another use for this very versatile block is to use a hot pot stand to protect your counter tops.  With an item this versatile and healthy – surely every kitchen needs one!  I have seen them used as platters and display plates and they look fantastic – think strawberries, cucumbers and other contrasting colors.

Available on Amazon in a variety of sizes and styles

Remember though DO NOT over use salt if suffering from high blood pressure, cardiac problems and other ailments that may be aggravated by salt.  Always ask your doctor’s advice.

Do I Need Both Serum And Moisturiser?

You don’t need both but it is better for optimal skincare to use serum and moisturizer.

Apply your serum to a cleansed face, neck & chest with your finger tips , upward strokes.

 The difference between a moisturizer and serum Serums are lighter and do not contain a lot of the heavier ingredients that moisturizer does. Serums penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin delivering potent little active ingredients that get to work where it really matters. 

Do I use serum and moisturizer at the time?
My answer is, not always, I like to just wear my serum to bed alone and keep the moisturizer for the morning.  Your skin will feel well hydrated on a deeper level as your serum will have been busy replenishing while you have slept. You can wear under your moisturizer on a daily basis especially if you feel your skin needs that little extra tlc.   The moisturizer will help protect your serum during the day, keeping the elements at bay, It will help lock in the moisture keeping the skin hydrated and the makeup away from the serum. well massaged in is perfect for the morning, not too much as you don’t want your makeup landing on your shoulder! 

What Does a Serum Do for Your Skin

Serums may contain Vitamins, A, C and E to rejuvenate and brighten the skin and a variety of plant oils.  They can contain EFA’s, peptides, anti oxidant’s ,essential oils, super nutrients, bio actives, all to rejuvenate, heal and repair. Serums can brighten or help problem skin such as acne with anti inflammatory ingredients, anti bacterial and oil balancing. 

Anti ageing serums will have hardworking properties that will speed up cellular renewal to help with that youthful glow.  Serums for acne or spot prone skin will have anti inflammatory properties to calm and heal.
Whilst there are no such things as miracle potions these little darlings go a long way in helping your skin be the best it can be and who doesn’t want that?  

Plants oils and essential oils are so beneficial to our skin so always opt for a natural product over a chemical laden green washed option.  Green washed being the term used when a company is TRYING to portray a natural image when maybe only one percent of their product is actually natural  read the ingredients!

When to use skin serum

To get the best out of your serum, always apply straight after cleansing unto the bare skin, a little goes a long way so no need to slap it on, just a little, applied with the finger tips, then you may add moisturizer.

Top Tip  Try to leave at least ten minutes before you apply your makeup in the morning after moisturizing.

How Skin Serum Works

Serums penetrate deeper to deliver active ingredients into your skin.   Moisturizer generally hydrate the top layer and lock it all in, they too of course can have wonderful active Ingredients that work well on the top layer, the icing on the cake!

Natural beauty serums vary but generally the more ingredients the more expensive.  There are some beautiful serums though such as rose hip oils that are highly effective for all skin types  and that are very cost effective.  Remember though you only use a little amount,  your skin can only absorb so much at a time,  the rest will be wasted.  Your serums/oils should last for months.

Which Skin Serum is Best?

The best serum to use will depend on your skin condition and what you want to attain or correct.

For oily and acne prone skin look for a serum containing vitamin C, retinol, zinc and salicylic acid,   these ingredients will help address inflammation and oil production.

The best serums for dry skin should contain vitamin E, niacinamide, glycolic acid and hyaluronic acid.  These ingredients will help the skin to retain moisture, exfoliate and protect from oxidative stress.

Mature Skin should look for hyaluronic acid, vitamin C and E to help moisture levels and nourish the skin.  The suggestions below are two great serums for any skin type as they contain the basics that are great for all conditions.

 

Hyaluronic Acid
Cosmedica Hyaluronic Acid available on Amazon Click Image

 

Look for Hyaluronic Acid as an ingredient – hyaluronic acid keeps the moisture in your skin and helps to plump smoothing fine lines. Cosmedica has verified happy reviewers on Amazon which gives reassurance on their product.  Hyaluronic Acid holds x1000 its weight in water is gentle and can be used on all skin types including sensitive, it has a calming effect and is very beneficial to dry skin conditions

vitamin c serum
Insta Natural Vitamin C Serum, Click Image

 

 

Another serum that contains a very effective combination is InstaNatural.  This cost effective best selling serum contains Vitamin E and Vitamin C, both these vitamins are a perfect skin restoring aid with added Hyaluronic Acid.  The reviews on this are excellent making it one of the best selling serums on Amazon.

How to apply serum and moisturizer.

The facial serums can be used and should be used on the neck and decolletage.  Apply upwards in gentle massage motions on the face and neck, move to the decolletage area and massage towards the heart.  Follow this with your moisturizer in the morning,  in the evening you can simply use serum on its own for a rich bedtime treatment.

 

 

 

 

What Are Body Butters And Are They Vegan?

Why use a body butter? Read on and then tell me you do not want to get slathering!

Why use a body butter? Read on and then tell me you do not want to get slathering!

What next!  You have heard of body lotion, body cream, body oil but there is a new kid on the block,  body butters.  Ok,  so maybe not a new kid,  they have been around but suddenly are gaining in popularity with every cosmetic giant coming out with their version.   Just as the name implies they are gorgeous, rich and creamy, the natural ones which of course are the best are practically delicious but please refrain!   Are body butters vegan?  Not all body butters are vegan but most are.  You just need to make sure there is no lanolin or honey which are two ingredients that can possibly be found in the non vegan brands.   If you are buying on Amazon or online it is usually stated clearly in the product description so a quick vegan search but also take the time to read the ingredients on the search results – just to make doubly sure!

So What are Body Butters and what do they do?

Body Butters are heavy duty body moisturisers that really pack a punch.  They contain more oil based ingredients than body lotion which carries a higher water content and are lighter.  Lotions are great for a light moisturise but if you really want your skin to feel luxuriously drenched  then the body butters are the way to go.  Normally the butters are whipped to give a lighter feel but still containing all those mighty ingredients.

So what is in these body butters that are going to deliver results?

Here are a few of the most popular ingredients and a little synopsis of what they do.

Shea Butter contains collagen producing essential fatty acids and nutrients. including vitamins A, E  and F .   Soothing, healing. rejuvenating, anti-inflammatory, anti -ageing and moisturising are just a few of the benefits of this luxurious butter.  Shea butter has 60% fat and is highly emollient but the magic of this wonderful ingredient is it’s ability to penetrate the skin’s barrier – and not just sit on the top layer.  This enables the skin to absorb more of these skin loving nutrients, now doesn’t that just make you feel good!  I LOVE knowing that a product or ingredient actually does something other than sit there!  Did I mention Shea butter has a SPF also – it factors in around 6.  It is a well kept secret that Shea butter is very useful for lightening discolouration or pigmentation and the beauty of it – excuse the pun – it will not block your pores so it can be used on the face.   Shea butter can be found in numerous beauty products but always opt for the products that contain raw or refined – the reason being the  most important nutrients can lose a lot of their value if they are chemically processed.   This butter is made from the nut of the shea tree native to Africa and  is a great source of income for a lot of the ladies in the villages which is another great positive of this little little but mighty nut!

 

Mango butter,  it even sounds lovely!  Rich in Oleic Acid, Vitanin A , Vitamin C and Vitamin E,  Stearic Acid, Linoleic Acid.

Kokum Butter,  this is great for dryness and in particular cracks in the feet.  It contains garcinol which has a lot of anti’s in it!   Antibacterial  aantioxidant and anti inflammatory!

These gorgeous butters all contain skin rejuvenating, healing and anti ageing properties and are a force to be reckoned with in combating dry skin conditions but also totally luxurious to use.  It is just so wonderful loving the aroma, the benefits and knowing what you are covering yourself in is totally natural and void of any chemical nasties.  I repeat this because it is so important but remember 60% of what you apply to the body is absorbed!  Always try to use the natural alternative in all your skincare and makeup choices.

How to apply your body butter.

I suggest a nice warm shower or bath and just before you are completely dry and the skin is still warm,  get slathering!  The warm skin will help all those gorgeous nutrients be absorbed that little bit quicker.  Pat yourself a little dry but not completely and apply your body butter always massaging towards your heart.  Pay particular attention to dry areas such as heels, elbows and knees.

I always advise you are standing on a towel or mat if you are giving your feet a good old rub otherwise the floor may will be slippery, (put on socks or slippers before you walk,) be careful!
So there you have it,  a quick intro to Body Butters ,  click  the image if you feel like indulging in our recommendations.  All available on Amazon.

Nourishing, Organic, Beautiful
Organic Rose & Peony whipped Body Butter
Glamour in a jar!
Glimmer, Golden, Gorgeous Body Butter
Whipped Shea Butter
Whipped Shea Butter, Rich, Creamy, Moisturising