I’m pretty insistent about buying from local and small-business for as much of my shopping as possible, even when it costs more than a retail chain. I even choose the small mom-and-pop retailers on Amazon.
I do this because I know that big retail chains can only offer low prices because they are able to pass the true cost of their products on to us taxpayers who have to pay for the environmental and social problems caused by their “profit-at-any-expense” operations.
(For example, did you know that BP gets to write the Gulf oil spill disaster off of their taxes?!?!)
The money I save at the Walmart (or Target, or K-Mart, etc.) register, I just end up paying out later with my taxes and even with my soul, given that my cheap goods were most likely made with toxic materials in dangerous sweatshops, destroyed precious natural resources at every stage of their intentionally-short lifecycle, and then were stocked on store shelves by extremely underpaid Americans who used to own small businesses themselves before the big retail chains drove them out.
In other words:
What good are $1 socks and $2 shampoo if it means my Neighbor needs food stamps and welfare because he just can’t feed his family on the $8 an hour (with no benefits or sick leave) that his big-box retail job pays?
What good is deeply discounted dishware or cheap clothing if it was created through the suffering of mothers and children in faraway lands, or through the destruction of pristine forests and healthy rivers?
Every dollar we spend is a vote for how we want the world to be.
Things that cause harm to people or planet in their creation are what we Jews might call “traif” in Hebrew, or “unholy, or spiritually unclean.” Buying without ethics—consuming without gratitude, respect or consideration for the Source—just isn’t “kosher.”*
And it doesn’t really save any money in the full-cost accounting either.
This is why I am soooo, happy to introduce you to SongCroft Naturals and their wonderful, ethical, handmade skin, hair and body care products.
About SongCroft Farm
SongCroft Farm is a small, family farm business in Snohomish, Washington. Brian and Marilene Richardson, the owners, are passionate about using sustainable organic practices to grow the medicinal herbs and flowers used in the personal care products they make and sell.
They believe safe personal care products are an important part of healthy living. Mindful wildcrafting, fair-trade, zero-waste, and sustainable and organic ingredients are important ethics of their business. They use no synthetic or conventionally-grown ingredients in any of SongCroft Naturals products, and they are never tested on animals either.
SongCroft is a working permaculture farm with dairy goats, chickens, fruit trees, and lots of herbs and vegetables. They grow much of their own food, practice self-sufficiency skills in their daily lives, and even built their own home. (Be still, my heart!)
Permaculture is the conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive systems which have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems. It is the harmonious integration of the landscape with people providing their food, energy, shelter and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way.
“Permaculture offers a radical approach to food production and urban renewal, water, energy and pollution. It integrates ecology, landscape, organic gardening, architecture and agro-forestry in creating a rich and sustainable way of living. It uses appropriate technology giving high yields for low energy inputs, achieving a resource of great diversity and stability. The design principles are equally applicable to both urban and rural dwellers” – Bill Mollison
Simple Ingredients, Amazing Results
“Simple Ingredients, Amazing Results” is SongCroft Naturals’ tagline, and I’d have to say they mean “truth in labeling” at every level. Because I have sensitive, blemish-prone skin, Marilene sent me the Skin Repair Complex and the Blemish Blaster to try out.
The Skin Repair Complex contains Avocado oil and Vitamin E, nothing else. And after using it for the last few weeks, I can say it is a light, very effective, soothing moisturizer that leaves my skin feeling dewey and soft. I was skeptical about using an oil on my acne, but I really like the results!
Avocado oil penetrates the skin more deeply than other oils allowing it to transport nutrients through the outer epidermis of the skin and into the dermis for greater effectiveness. Avocado oil is great for all skin types, men and women alike, and is especially helpful for mature, sensitive or troubled skin.
- Has strong UV absorption properties
- Regenerates connective skin tissue and inhibits bacteria growth
- Nourishes and repairs dehydrated, scarred or mature skin, and can reduce age spots
- Stimulates collagen metabolism to retard visible signs of aging
- Accelerates the healing process to wounds and skin burns, and is helpful with eczema and psoriasis
- Has high levels of fatty acids to nourish skin and keep it moisturized
Turns out avocado oil was probably the best facial moisturizer I could have been using all these years. Well, it’s not too late to start…
The Blemish Blaster surprised me too. Because I wrestle with Chronic Fatigue syndrome (CFIDS/ME), my gut is very leaky, and I have a ton of food allergies, which is why my natural detox systems are so overloaded and sluggish that my skin seems to be the only outlet for toxins sometimes. This means, despite living on the GAPS diet and avoiding dozens of allergens and toxins, I get painful cystic acne and pimples that linger for weeks or months because my immune system is too compromised with my condition to adequately heal them.
This means that when it comes to acne products, I’m a very tough case. Because the root cause of my acne (CFIDS and leaky gut) is ongoing, topical—and even dietary—measures can only do so much. I’ve used every topical acne product out there almost, and I am accustomed to acne products that dry the blemish and often irritate the surrounding skin as well. So accustomed to it, in fact, that I didn’t think Blemish Blaster worked at all, at first.
After about a week of use, my skin just suddenly gently exfoliated in the shower, and many blemishes just kind of lifted off my face, leaving a little red mark in their place. Big, painful cysts that threatened to emerge backed down, and yet there was no dryness and no irritation. I think that’s because of the ingredients: Ethyl Alcohol (made from grain), Witch Hazel, Calendula, Tea Tree oil, Cedar oil, Wintergreen, Lavendula, Bay Leaf, and Myrtle.
The anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory herbs and essential oils in Blemish Blaster worked just as well and just as fast as commercial acne products I’ve tried that contain benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, but without the irritation, redness, and peeling. And in combination with the Skin Repair Complex, I am now enjoying clearer, softer skin with no irritation or dryness whatsoever.
I’d like to share the same wonderful products I tried with you. I think you need to try these amazingly effective, non-toxic, ethical products for yourself, so courtesy of SongCroft Naturals, I am giving away a bottle of Skin Repair Complex and a bottle of Blemish Blaster to one lucky winner!
Together, the giveaway has a value of $28, including shipping. Plus, you’ll be patronizing a family-run, small farm company whose products are as ethical as they are effective!
To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter thingie below. Entries will be accepted until midnight on Wednesday, May 30, 2012. Winner will be selected through random.org.
These are awesome products from a really awesome, ethical small farm business. Even if you don’t win, you’ll really love their products, so please check out SongCroft Naturals.