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Voilá. From A to Beauty.

If your skin could talk, what would it say?

If your skin could talk, what would it say?

As humans, we like to try to “fix” things. But, there is a force at work in this world that is more powerful and magical than anything we can create. That force is nature. 

It’s the same thing with our skin. 

4 Soul-Satisfying Ways to Start Spring (no cleaning required)

4 Soul-Satisfying Ways to Start Spring (no cleaning required)

The urge to spring clean is real. And there’s a reason for that. It’s actually a restorative ritual that is steeped in history. The oldest “spring cleaning” rituals date back centuries and span across many cultures.

Today’s modern society has truly embraced the annual event. (Some might say a little too tightly!) Just look through your social media and magazine articles… here are some headlines that stood out to me:

  • 16 must-have products for spring cleaning
  • 6 expert must-dos for spring cleaning
  • 10 dangerous mistakes to avoid when spring cleaning
  • 33 tips for successful spring cleaning 

33? Really? That’s some pressure.

I mean, I love the idea of throwing the curtains open, and sweeping the winter blues away. But this time of year (more than Jan 1) is when I really get motivated to start new rituals and simplify my space. For me, it’s about making a connection with nature to restore my own energy.

So of course, I have my own “must-do” list for spring cleaning! I can guarantee you’ll feel amazing afterward and you won’t find the words “scrub” or “wash” anywhere in my list.

Grace’s 4 Soul-Satisfying Ways to Start Spring 

  1. Plant something. You don’t need a garden or even a yard. This year, I’m lucky enough to have a yard for the first time as an adult (after decades of urban living) and I’m really looking forward to seeing those colors and blooms everywhere!

    But, since it’s still early here in the Northeast, I planted microgreens and put them on my window sill. 
    Do you know how fast microgreens grow? They are amazing. Seeing a plant sprout and push its way through the dirt toward the light is magical. It actually makes me appreciate being alive.

  2. Make getting outside a ritual. With many of us embracing the WFH lifestyle, it’s critical for our mental well-being to take advantage of the longer days and warmer air. It can be super simple!

    Try taking a morning walk or an after-dinner walk. Do stretches on your back porch. Or have your coffee on your front steps. That is one of my favorite things to do, even though I still need a jacket.

    I love making that morning connection with the world. It can feel so good to just take a moment and look at the sky, listen to the birds, and appreciate just being outdoors.

  3. Edit your bathroom shelf. Spring is a great time to simplify your skincare routine. If you have skincare products that are just taking up room in your bathroom, now is the time to clear away anything that’s been sitting around for a while.

    Skincare products are meant to be used, not saved. So, if you don’t love using it, it’s probably time to move on.

    Don’t know what to keep and what to throw away? Well, the skin loves consistency. So, the best skincare product is the one you want to use.

    You also should know what’s in your skincare. This is a big one. It’s important to look at the ingredient list because there are some key ingredients worth avoiding. We have some specific information on ingredients to avoid here on our website.

    Another eye-opener for me was that I don’t need a different product for every part of my face. My Avoila Nourishing Face Oil works as well for my eyes and lips as for the rest of my face. (I also use it on my hands and hair.) And, my sunscreen has a tint to even out my color. Add a little mascara and I’m good to go!

  4. Bring in new scents. I’m a huge fan of aromatherapy. I can feel myself unwind when I breathe in certain scents. And, scents play a big part of seasonality for me. Grassy and floral scents (like vetiver and geranium) are especially centering for me this time of year. I can feel my senses awakening and my energy being restored. And light citrus scents like lemon and grapefruit are great for energizing the day.

That’s it!

So, if you want to clean your windows and give your bathrooms an extra scrub--that’s great. But, we have enough pressure in our lives! Feel free to ignore the lists of tips and must-dos and just enjoy Spring's simple pleasures.

Challenge your world -> Change our world

Challenge your world -> Change our world

More and more, women today are embracing their own power and purpose. We see barriers being broken and glass ceilings being shattered. But what are the challenges we face in our own lives? And how do they change us? How do they change the world?

This post is about two things. It’s about how I gave up on the slew of skincare products that were piling up in my bathroom because of what they were doing to my skin. It’s also about how when we challenge the status quo, the world changes. But, let’s start with my bathroom. 


Desperately seeking simplicity 

Only 5 years ago, I was a willing test subject for every cream, moisturizer, serum, cleanser, spray and mask for “sensitive skin” I could get my hands on. I thought if the brand said it was good for sensitive skin, I could use it without issue. 

As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, during a particularly frustrating and stressful period in my life my skin started to rebel. Life was asking a lot of me both professionally and personally, As it turned out, too much. My skin became painful to the touch. Everything I tried was irritating. Nothing I tried worked.

That’s when in complete desperation, I put aside all of the complex chemical formulations and sought out simplicity in an effort to reset my skin. I tossed out every skincare sample and full-size cream, moisturizer, serum, cleanser, spray and mask for “sensitive skin”. 

I couldn’t have foreseen how by challenging everything I relied on for my skin, it would lead me to a new mindset, a new passion project, and ultimately a new business. But, it did.


Changing our approach and our changing our lives

When Kristy and I started using the organic, plant-based oil that became Avoila, we realized that our skin wanted to be fed. It wanted nutrients so that it could do what it already knew how to do—protect and renew itself. And it wanted them everyday. 

We created Avoila Nourishing Face Oil to simply give our skin the nourishment it craved. We started Avoila because we want to share that simple idea with others. 

Our original, avocado-based face oil didn’t begin as a “life-changing” idea. But that’s the thing about ideas. When we challenge the status quo in our own lives, our world changes us, and those around us.


Seeing the bigger picture

Looking back, I can see how for decades, “Big Beauty” has been churning out products that feed on our insecurities and fears. It’s why I was never satisfied with any beauty product. I never even finished what I had before something new because I was addicted to that cycle. 

And my skin definitely wasn’t benefiting from this behavior. It was the opposite. Many of the questionable ingredients in these products put stress on my skin, especially because I was bouncing from one to the next. 

But, skincare consumers started challenging the status quo by opening themselves up to smaller independent brands. Little by little, consumers decided they want to do business with companies who are transparent about their process, and with founders who share their same values. 

When I was growing up, I didn’t even trust a skincare brand if it wasn’t in a big name store. But, the world has changed. That came about because of people taking a stand for what they believe is best for themselves. That’s what challenging the status quo can do. 

I’m not sure anyone sets out to change the world. And yet, when we challenge the way things are being done in an effort to better ourselves or those around us, the world changes.