Monday, March 31, 2014

In My Beauty Cabinet - Natural, Non-Toxic Products I Love

These are a few of my favourite things!

You may have noticed that I have recently radically changed my health habits and my hubby & I have been eating as clean as possible - we're not perfect though! However, being pregnant has got me thinking more and more about the toxins we place on our skin / bodies and also the toxic products we are using around the house. So here is a peek into my beauty cabinet at the moment. What products I'm personally loving. I have a huge list of other things to try out as well so I'm sure there'll be a follow up to this post in the coming months. 

1. Jane Iredale Glowtime Full Coverage Mineral BB Cream
I've been using Jane Iredale mineral products for quite a few years now as I've always had ridiculously sensitive skin & their varied mineral range works well for me. I only recently got onto their BB cream and won't ever look back. It seriously smooths out any blemishes and makes your skin look radiant like a glowing goddess.

2.  Pure Fiji Hydrating Body Lotion
Every time I slather my body with this lotion it takes me immediately back to Fiji. All the fragrances are delightful but my absolute favourite is the coconut. Smells divine & makes me feel like it's always summertime. All natural, locally sourced ingredients too.

3. Jane Iredale Smooth Affair Facial Primer & Brightener
When I mentioned skin radiance above with the BB Cream, this primer will give you serious glowing skin! It also helps my makeup stay on longer & smooths out any unevenness. This with the BB cream are practically all I need. I barely need concealer!

4. Gernetic Skincare
I have been using Gernetic for around 10 years now and swear by it. I have terribly sensitive skin and at the age of 20 started getting rashes on my chin which only got worse with pretty much every product I tried. My sister who is a salon owner, got me onto Gernetic and I have never looked back. I won't lie, these products are not just topical, so there was a definite elimination process that I personally went through for about 2 weeks as my body was ridding itself of impurities but after that my skin has been practically perfect and I've never ever had a rash on my face ever since and that was 10 years ago! I won't touch any other skin care. I personally use Glyco for cleansing, Fibro for toning, and Synchro for moisturising. (Just a note: my sister has never come across anyone who had as long an elimination process as me by the way. I obviously had some serious issues my body had to sort out)

5. Grown Alchemist Hand Wash & Hand Cream
I came across these products in a hotel bathroom and was obsessed by the scent of the hand cream. Tracked them down and continue to keep these babies in my bathroom. The hand wash in sweet orange, cedarwood, & sage is so gentle and smells delicious. The hand cream in vanilla & orange peel complements the hand wash perfectly and not only smells good enough to eat but I find it soaks in quite quickly and doesn't leave a greasy residue like some hand creams can. What's better is that Grown Alchemist are all organic!

Do you have any natural or organic products you swear by? I love suggestions as I'm always looking for new and exciting ranges to try, especially local. I'm currently looking for the perfect shampoo & conditioner for my very long, wavy tresses. I have a super sensitive scalp and have yet to find what works best. 

Clare x

Monday, March 24, 2014

Metamorphosis Monday

Photos courtesy of Katie. Please don't share without permission.

I'm declaring today Metamorphosis Monday! I'm just so proud of my bestie, Katiefor her achievements and the amazing journey she's been on since July last year. She truly is an inspiration. Not only has she dropped from a size 14 to a size 8 but she's now fitter, leaner & stronger than she was in high school! I've watched her go from someone who hated exercise & even said herself that she "collected gym memberships" to someone who is so unbelievably active, and has now become a healthy role model. I watched her get up on stage & tell her story to over 2000 people in Brisbane last month where she won a whopping, well-desereved $4000! 

Have you been through a metamorphosis? I'd love to hear of your journey.

I'm so glad to be on this journey with Katie. For me, I didn't have the weight to lose so my results may not seem as physically impressive yet for me the nutritional system we use has seen me go from a zombie some days, after sleepless nights to being full of energy, sleeping soundly every single night, I've stopped grinding my teeth in my sleep, and am seeing definition in my body that I haven't seen since I was 16! I'm so excited to know that I'm giving my baby the best start to life health wise too! Last year I had blood tests done before I went to South America as I knew we would be trying for a baby when we got back. Everything was fairly good except I was vitamin D deficient. Now... my doctor & obstetrician were (pleasantly) shocked by my blood test results. I am in nooooo way vitamin D deficient any longer, in fact my levels were so amazing the obstetrician thought I was taking supplements. My B12 was also amazing and my cholesterol was very low. I've also been lucky to have reached 18 weeks of pregnancy without any morning sickness, or any weight gain whatsoever. Yes, I realise I still have a long way to go but feel like with the right nutrition and exercise I'm giving myself and bub the best chance possible. 

If you want to know more about our journey and the amazing nutritional system we use, feel free to drop me a line any time: curiouslookingglass (at)

I'll be posting photos of my baby bump soon! We're headed to beautiful Hawaii next week for a sneaky babymoon - woo!

Clare x

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Keep Calm & Be an Austen Heroine!

Photo by Glenn Chiofalo

I'm extremely fortunate to be treading the boards as my favourite literary character right now, Elizabeth Bennet. Above is a sneaky peak of my beautiful pelisse & bonnet that I wear. Just stunning!  (please ignore the creases, I hadn't had a chance to steam iron it before I took this photo) I'm thoroughly enjoying this play as Pride & Prejudice is many a girl's dream to be involved in and I have a truly beautiful cast. We've had most shows sell out which goes to show that Austen is still as popular as ever!

I will share more photos after the production. I must say, this role has definitely been a task, being pregnant & at the moment still working full time. Luckily for those regency dresses, no one has been able to notice my little bump. I've had to be extremely disciplined with lines and such to ensure baby brain doesn't kick in at any point haha! 

Who is your favourite Austen character?

I shall leave you with a few of my favourite P&P pins...

Clare x

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Three Tips to Save Money on Food

Food is something that most of us enjoy, so the idea of changing the way that we eat in order to save money might not sound immediately appealing. However, cutting the cost of your weekly shop needn’t mean making sacrifices. Instead, it can push you to become more creative with your cooking and to invest more time in considering the food that you eat.

Here, we look at several things you can do to cut down the amount you spend on food.

Go vegetarian

The cost of meat compared to vegetables is astronomical so it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that cutting meat out of the diet should lead to a considerable reduction in the cost of the weekly food shop. Of course, you don’t have to commit to a vegetarian diet seven nights a week to benefit from the low cost of a veggie meal.

Cooking vegetarian food for just a few nights a week is a simple way to save money. Not only that, you’ll be able to buy great quality vegetables and still spend less than you would if you were to be eating meat. Needless to say, this could be a great inspiration for you to make a full time change to your diet if you’ve been considering doing so.

Eat together

As with most things in life, buying in bulk is usually a good way to save money. While the idea of purchasing huge amounts of food to store in the cupboard probably doesn’t sound very appealing this isn’t the only way to benefit from the possibility of bulk buying.

Organising a dinner party is a great excuse to find good value and can work particularly well if you can convince your friends to host their own. If you can eat as a group even just once a week, you’re likely to notice an ease brought to your American Express credit cards.

Needless to say, there’s the added benefit of having a good time.

Grow your own

You don’t need to have acres and acres of your own land in order to grow a few vegetables. Even the smallest of outside spaces can house a small patch. Not only will this be a fun thing to do, it’s a surprisingly effective way to save a little money on food. If you’ve got a lot of space, you might even be able to sell the surplus vegetables for a tidy profit.

Clare x

In association with Ginnie Richards

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Guest Post: Living for the Now without Compromising the Future by Morgan Darrow

As you may have seen in my latest post, my hubby and I are expecting our first child in August and as exciting as this is some realities have hit home. We have been busy little bees preparing to earn an income that will surpass my current weekly income by the time I finish up work in late July so that we can still live comfortably without me having to freak out about rushing back to work. I know so many Mother's that wish they had that luxury of staying home to raise their kids. Anyway, this got me thinking about retirement at any age and writer, Morgan Darrow, has kindly shared with us a post below on living for the now without compromising the future...

Clare x


When thinking about retirement, it’s easy to get in a catch-22 circle loop of thinking. You want to save money now so that you can be comfortable and free during retirement. But you also want to live in the moment. There have been studies about working longer leading to longer lives, but if you work out the math, if you work 10 years longer than the average, you gain one year of life. I think I’d rather focus on living to the fullest during those ten years. Of course, if you love your job, you might get the best of both worlds.

Regardless, retirement does take planning if you don’t want to end up stressing about finances your whole life. Below are some ways that you can make the most of the “now” while establishing the necessary means for a sustainable retirement.

Live Healthy
Making healthy choices is the foundation for a long, fulfilling life. When your body feels good, you feel good. Also, getting in the habit of treating your body well can help prevent health problems later in life, which in turn can decrease medical bills. Who says being happy can’t save you money? Here are some actionable tips on living healthy AND saving money.

* Grow your own food- even if you start small with a few herbs or just one vegetable, growing your own produce allows you to control what’s in your food, is usually a lot cheaper than purchasing from others, and gardening is known to have several health benefits.

* Do things yourself- instead of calling the repairman for every little problem, look for internet tutorials for fixing basic plumbing, electrical, and other appliance issues. Change your oil. Cook your own food. You’ll save money on labor and you’ll be ever expanding your skill-set and keeping your mind active.

* Exercise- Go for a walk, run, jog, or swim. Exercising outside increases the benefits of your workout and saves you gym fees. * Don’t go it alone. Businesses like Isagenix allow you to dedicate your life to clean, healthy, living, and improve your wealth as well. They can give you the resources you need to help make your goal of healthy living profitable.

Financial Habits
* Get (and stay) out of debt- Debt weighs on your shoulders and can add a lot of unneeded stress into your life. Do your best to pay off outstanding debt as quickly as possible and only use credit for emergencies or when absolutely necessary.

* Be a minimalist- the less possessions you have to tie you down, the free-er you are to focus on the important things in life. Don’t buy things you don’t need. Sell things you don’t use. This will make the things you do purchase more important. * Know your situation- Don’t leave your retirement up to fate. Try Suncorp’s superannuation calculator to see how much you’ll need to save in order to have the retirement you want. From there, you can adjust your savings strategies and spending habits accordingly.

Money is nowhere near the most important thing in life, but it is necessary, and sound financial habits allow you to avoid stressing over the bills. Spending small amounts of time planning out your financial strategies can allow you to focus on the important things, like planning your world travels.

Article by Morgan Darrow