RAW THOUGHTS

The best tips we’ve heard on self-empowerment

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Ladies, we need to talk.

You know all those times you compare yourself to others, criticize your own reflection, or tell yourself you can’t do something because you’re not good enough, strong enough, or smart enough? It needs to stop… like now. In 2018, we’re throwing negative self-talk out the window – and so are you.

It’s time for a shift – we’re moving from self-criticism to self-empowerment. Because hell hath no fury like a woman reborn! The good news is, all the tools you need to feel more empowered are already inside of you – you just need to learn how to harness and nurture them. And once you do? You’re gonna be a force to be reckoned with.

To help you along, here are the top tips on self-empowerment we’ve heard – and yep, they work.

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1.

Firstly, challenge negative thoughts.

When you tell yourself you’re not capable of achieving something, you believe it. So when negative thoughts about your own self-worth creep into your mind, challenge them instead of just accepting them as fact. Ask yourself, is this REALLY true? Because chances are – it’s not. Very few things are impossible – and a positive attitude the first step toward achieving your goals. Talk to yourself like you would to a very dear friend – with kindness… and just watch the transformation.

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2.

Take responsibility for yourself.

Here’s a little tough love: sometimes we just need to step up and put our big-girl pants on. Creating excuses gets us nowhere, and neither does placing blame on others. When we start to accept responsibility for ourselves and our lives – we start to gain more and more control. And with control comes power, and with power comes achievement.

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3.

Meditate

To totally accept yourself, it helps to really know yourself – inside and out. Whatever type of meditation you choose, it’s a great way of bringing you back to earth and connecting you back to yourself – and revealing to you sides of yourself you may have forgotten. Meditation also helps with energy levels – it rejuvenates body and mind, which helps you feel more stimulated, motivated and confident within yourself.

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4.

Learn to say ‘no’

Sometimes, the simplest solution can be the hardest. Women especially find it difficult to say ‘no’, particularly when they feel like they’re letting someone down. Many of us feel obliged to agree to every request, and would rather juggle a an overwhelming amount of balls than refuse to help – even if it means we end up with no time or energy for ourselves. But saying ‘no’ when you genuinely don’t want to or can’t do something will give you back your power – and even earn the respect of those around you. It will liberate you from the weight on your shoulders and give you more control over your time. ‘No’ is a very powerful tool, indeed.

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5.

Trust the process

Whatever you do, don’t give up on you. Be aware of the growth that is happening within you every day.  The process of our growth is ongoing and sometimes not visible to the naked eye – keep going with your journey and you’ll see the results.

Top 5 benefits of Raw Coconut + Mango

Image via www.lookslikefilm.com

Some things in life just work better in pairs. Wine and cheese. Surf and sand. Ross and Rachel. Raw Coconut + Mango.

At Raw Sugar, we love thinking up magical concoctions from the divine ingredients given to us by the kind hands of Mother Nature. Our team of incredibly fussy skincare experts spend lots of time putting together different blends of wholesome fruits, nuts, seeds, and superfoods to see what works best. And frankly, our Raw Coconut + Mango marriage was an instant hit – and is fast becoming a classic.

But, there’s way more to this scrumptious-smelling duo than meets the eye. It’s actually incredibly powerful and effective on skin. Here’s why.

1. The Mango brightens

Did you know mango is magic? It works to perk up and brighten your complexion – leaving your skin feeling and looking younger, bouncier and more alive. Since it’s jam-packed with anti-oxidants, mango works to promote collagen production which increases skin elasticity and firmness. Its Vitamin A properties also help with giving your skin a head-turning glow.

2. While the Raw Coconut soothes

Raw Coconut offers the kind of soothing properties that irritated or tired skin dream of. Coconut has natural antibacterial powers that have great effectiveness in relieving inflammation, eczema, dermatitis and any painful skin allergies.

3. Mango can assist with acne

Mango is rich in Vitamin A – which has been proven to reduce oil production on the skin. So, if regular acne keeps showing up on your face like an unwelcome visitor, mango can help. Pssst – it’s also great at reducing fine lines and wrinkles, too!

4. While Raw Coconut deeply moisturizes

Coconut is a brilliant natural skin moisturizer. It’s so easily and readily absorbed into skin’s pores – and doesn’t leave behind any sort of residue. Which means that even if you have naturally oily skin, coconut will work for you.

5. The best part? ColdPress® Technology!

When this magic duo is combined into our products, it’s processed through ColdPress® Technology which locks in all the good oils, vitamins and enzymes that skin instantly soaks up. So you know your skin will reap all the pure wholesome goodness of these incredible fruits.

Still not convinced about the prowess of Raw Coconut + Mango? Visit our online store and try it for yourself. WARNING: you’ll be hooked!

How to make New Years Resolutions that will stick

The New Year – a magical catalyst for change and motivator for transformation.
That time of year is here where we vow to throw out old habits and pick up positive new ones.
Where we feel we have a clean slate and can turn over a new leaf.
If you’ve often made New Years’ resolutions that you haven’t quite kept, you’re not alone. Many
of us overpromise ourselves with long lists and near-impossible tasks. But you can make
positive life changes that WILL stick. It just takes a little bit of extra effort and persistence.
Follow these 5 steps to make successful New Years’ resolutions that will actually stick.

 

1. Find support
The start of a new year is the perfect time to make changes – because many other
people around you will be doing the same thing. Talk to family and friends about
how your respective resolutions are going – they’ll offer positive reinforcement and
push you to keep going.

2. Set realistic goals
Set yourself up for success by setting realistic, step-by-step goals – rather than
just one great big one. That way, each small goal will be easier to achieve – and
every achievement will give you the encouragement and feeling of progress you
need to keep moving forward.

3. Anticipate obstacles
You’re going to have obstacles along your journey – that’s a given. Make a list of
what they could be so you have a plan on how to deal with them when they show
up.

4. Failure is good!
If at first you don’t succeed, pick yourself up and try again. Failing sometimes is
inevitable – but it’s the way we react to failure that matters. Giving things another
go after you fall will make you stronger, more resilient, and increase your chances
of success in the long-run.

5. Give yourself a pat on the back
Plan to reward yourself for your progress and you’ll have an even greater
incentive to stick to your goals. But don’t just limit rewards to achievements, and
make it about effort instead. Treat yourself every time you don’t give up when you
easily could have and your probability of success will be incredible.

LET’S TAKE A MOMENT TO TALK ABOUT THE GOOD THINGS THAT HAPPENED IN 2017

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2017 was a big year.

Big election. Big results. Big protests and big backlash.

But instead of dwelling on the negative, let’s focus on the GOOD things that happened in the year preceding us. The triumphs and the glimpses of hope. The events that inspired us and shaped us. The moments that we’ll remember forever – and that we’ll use as arsenal to enter 2018 brighter, bolder and more uplifted than ever.

Here they are – the little things that happened throughout the year that will make a big positive impact on lives.

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1. Strangers uniting to help others during Hurricane Harvey

In the darkest of times, during the devastating hurricane that hit Houston this year, we saw a beautiful display of humanity and comeradie among the people of Texas. Boat owners mobilized to save people in flooded houses, neighbours combined their strength to reach out to people stuck in cars, and an all-round feeling of good grace inspired us all.

2. Raw Sugar donated over 500,000 bars of soap to people in need

Not many people are aware that hygiene is a major world issue. In fact, 32% of people don’t have access to the resources needed to sustain a healthy level of hygiene – which can cause diseases and a myriad of health issues. So, to do our bit, we partnered with Direct Relief in July and handed out over 500,000 fresh bars of soap to people who needed them most. It was part of our Raw Sugar Initiative – something we plan to exercise even further in 2018. Watch this space.

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3. Diversity at the Oscars

Are we the only ones who cheered the roof off when a list of well-overdue, well-deserved wins were handed out at the Oscars? We saw a kind of diversity we haven’t seen honored on our screens in a while – and it was beautiful.

4. Malala Yousafzai started college at Oxford
In one of the most inspiring turn-of-events situations to ever have happened, Malala started her studies at Oxford 5 years after being shot in the head by the Taliban for trying to go to school. After all the incredible things Malala has achieved in the past few years, this one might be the most important – as Oxford is the same school Benazir Bhutto attended, who went on to be the first female prime minister of Malala’s native Pakistan.

Image via Independent

5. Villagers in India knitted sweaters to protect elephants from the cold

This year, elephants in India started sporting multi-colored sweaters after villagers banded together to hand-knit super-sized woollies for the animals to protect them from the near-freezing temperatures. These formerly-abused animals were living at a nearby conservation centre – and when staff warned that they might be in danger from the cold, women of the village wouldn’t hear of it. They produced warm, colorful garments to see the creatures through the winter – and give them another chance at life.

Are you feeling inspired by the positive events that were in 2017? Let’s all make a pact to be the change we wish to see in the world in 2018… and just watch the magic happen.

The BEST ways to relax your mind over the holidays

Silly season. Party season. Feasting with family and friends season. Whatever you call the holidays – there’s no denying it’s a big time of the year. From the endless parties to the relentless gift shopping, the holidays take up a lot of energy. During such a busy period, it can be easy to just forget to… rest.

But, with intentional and mindful activities planned during the holiday season – it can be the most effective time you have to rejuvenate, re-energize and recuperate.

Here are 5 great ways to relax and recharge… as the champagne pours somewhere off in the distance.

A little solitude goes a long way.

If you’re an introvert, you’ll need your dedicated “me” time. To avoid running on empty, start your day with a morning ritual that involves no other people… just you. This way, you’ll be able to mentally prepare yourself for the socializing and stimulation the day will bring.

Balance out the big social gathering with more intimate ones.

In a sea of big, boisterous parties – it can be difficult to have meaningful conversations and bond with people you care about. Plan smaller, more intimate events with your partner, your two best friends, your mother, or your favorite colleague. These sort of parties leave you feeling energized rather than drained.

Image via www.lookslikefilm.com

Make time to move your body.

It’s so easy to forget exercise over the holidays. But with its incredible ability to reduces stress, exercise is one of the most important things to keep up as part of your holiday routine. And, it doesn’t have to be a killer gym workout or hours on the treadmill – a nice hike, a spot of backyard yoga, or just a long walk will do the trick.

Get outside among nature.

Your body will not enjoy being cooped up inside all winter long. Spending time outside will help clear your mind, assist with prioritizing, and give your body a good dose of Vitamin D – which is super useful for dealing with stress.

Put work on pause… completely and entirely.

It can be tough to switch off. It really can. But if you have a job that allows you to take some time off, then actually take that time OFF. That means no work emails. No research. No talking to clients. Just chill and enjoy yourself so that you can go into the New Year well rested and ready to take on the world!

5 useful tips for easing into veganism

So you want to go vegan. You’ve heard about the ethical, environmental and health benefits the vegan lifestyle delivers and you want in. You’ve been planning it all year, but just haven’t quite gotten around to it. You reason that after the holidays and into the new year is the best time to make the transition – when the slate is clean and motivations are high.

But… how do you make the change, and make it successfully? Here are some useful tips and guidelines to ensure your transition to veganism is one that sticks.

Festival ’16 shot by Ming Nomchong | Spell & The Gypsy Collective

Educate yourself.

Before anything else, make the effort to learn everything there is to know about veganism. This will really help you feel prepared and get you excited to embark on a positive life change. Read all about the benefits of the vegan lifestyle. Learn how to optimally nourish yourself on this diet so you won’t have any deficiencies. Start understanding ingredients lists and which ingredients are off-limits. All the insights will help you ease into a plant-based lifestyle with confidence and ease.

Add before you subtract.

Rather than just going cold turkey and eliminating all meat, dairy and eggs from your diet straight off the bat – start incorporating more vegan-friendly foods before you take anything out. That way, the transition will be smoother and won’t shock your body. Start adding more legumes, seeds, nuts, vegetables, non-dairy milk (like almond, rice, or soy) and tofu into your diet. You can also start a collection of delicious vegan recipes you can get excited about making.

Leave the hardest till last.

What’s your favorite food ever? That one you think you’re gonna have a really, really hard time letting go? That one. Maybe it’s a creamy feta cheese, or your Sunday morning eggs on toast. Whatever it is, don’t cut it out straight away. Leave it until last. Phase it out in a slow, controlled manner – this could take weeks or even months. You’ll find that the less you have it, the less you’ll crave it.

Learn all the good substitutes.

Being vegan doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the good stuff. Did you know that nutritional yeast flakes make a great substitute for parmesan cheese? Or that coconut yogurt tastes just as good (if not better) than dairy yogurt? Experiment with all these substitutes to find which ones you like best. Soon enough, you’ll be creating your own new plant-based versions of traditional favorite recipes.

Image via kiyoaki.tumblr.com

Don’t lose sight of why.

When the going gets tough, it’s easy to be tempted into giving in. But, when you know exactly why you decided to be vegan and remind yourself of that, you can quickly reign the temptations in. This is why it really helps to know all the benefits of a plant-based diet and the positive effects it has on our health, environment, and humanity.

6 benefits of honey you didn’t know about

There’s nothing we love more than finding new uses for seemingly standard pantry items. And honey is one of the very best multi-purpose foods we can think of.

Before sugar as we know it today was introduced into society, honey was commonly used as the (natural) sweetener of choice. And, did you know that historically, this sweeter-than-sweet substance has been used for centuries as a natural remedy for an array of things – it has bucket loads of great health benefits.

Packed with therapeutic properties, the benefits of honey vary from skincare to lowering blood-sugar levels.

Honey has, quite literally, hundreds of benefits – many of them very well documented. But here are 6 great ones you may not necessarily know about yet.

Image via Catherine Frawley

It’s an effective cough medicine.

Who knew curing a pesky cough was as easy as a spoonful of honey? Considered a natural cough medicine, it helps to relieve itchiness and discomfort in your throat by developing a protective layer. In fact, clinical research has shown that raw honey can be just as effective as dextromethorphan – an active ingredient in most traditional forms of cough medicines.

It can reduce allergies.

Allergies getting in the way of your day-to-day? Honey to the rescue! Containing pollen spores that were picked up by bees from different flowers, honey will slowly add allergens to your body – working kind of like a natural anti-allergy vaccine. To make it work, try having a teaspoon of raw honey every morning a month before pollen season hits.

It fights infections.

Honey is powerful. Some might even say it has super powers. It fights the good fight, and infections are one of its main enemies in combat. Before penicillin was popular, honey was used to fight skin infections and heal wounds – all thanks to its antibacterial, anti fungal, and antioxidant properties.

It can cure eye diseases.

Back in the day (like way, way back), Egyptians discovered that honey can play a part in curing eye disease. Applying honey on your eyes can improve sight, prevent loss of eye-sight, cure redness, eye infections and conjunctivitis.

It can cure acne.

Blemish sufferers rejoice, the cure you’ve been searching for may just be sitting pretty in your pantry. Honey can help you rid yourself of acne by absorbing impurities from the pores – it’s a soothing antiseptic.

It’s wonderful for healthy hair.

To round off our list of the magical benefits of honey, we have hair health. Yes – honey can help to restore strength and shine to dull, dry hair. And, it can help you get rid of dandruff by restoring moisture and reviving hair follicles. Perfect.

7 healthiest dessert recipes on the internet

There’s no getting around it. The holiday season is full of spiced lattés, sticky-date puddings and a never-ending selection of sweet treats. And no matter how much you try to abstain from the decadence, sooner or later – you will give in.

But if, and when, all the butter, sugar and indulgence gets a bit too much – you can still satisfy your sweet tooth (and not ostracize yourself from society) with these super healthy dessert recipes. That’s right, we just used the words HEALTHY and DESSERT in the same sentence – and with good reason, because we scoured the internet and found a whole bunch of guilt-free deliciousness.

Here are out top 7… so eat, enjoy and be merry!

1. Chocolate chip kale cookies

One of our fav gals, Chocolate Covered Katie, has come up with this completely outrageous yet completely delicious chocolate-chip cookie recipe that, quite frankly, is so wrong it’s right. Using spelt flour instead of regular, and packed with leafy greens, these cookies help you get your daily veg intake while tasting like… well, cookies.

Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it – we’re officially obsessed.

2. Samoa Bars

Have dietary restrictions? No worries. These scrumptious Samoa Bars by California’s own Bakerita are Gluten Free, Paleo, AND Vegan. You know what else they are? Utterly amazing.

With a caramel coconut filling, they’re so decadent it almost hurts. Oh and guess what, they’re packed with so much good stuff you can even have ‘em for breakfast. YEAH.

3. Strawberry Ice Cream

Making your own ice cream is one of those things that sounds really intimidating but actually isn’t. If you have a food processor, it’s as easy as 10 minutes and 4 ingredients. And with this recipe from Country Living, it’s only 70 calories per serving. Get on it.

4. Raw Raspberry Cheesecake Brownie Bars

Go weak in the knees for cheesecake? Don’t we all *sigh*. Love brownies? Us too. Packed with protein and healthy fats, these raspberry cheesecake brownie bars give you the best of both worlds – minus all the guilt. We’ll have five, please. Like right now.

5. Baked Peaches

Sometimes, the simplest things in life are the sweetest. Literally. These baked peaches taste so exceptional you won’t believe you’re just eating a piece of fruit. Add a spoonful of coconut yogurt to take it up a notch.

6. Pumpkin Pie

Who knew comfort food could be so nutritious? With a buttery, flaky crust and smooth, creamy filling – this is the ultimate crowd-pleasing dessert. A medley of delicious spices means that it fills your home with the most delicious scent while baking. Have yourself a slice… or three. We know we will be.

7. Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Another great recipe from our girl at Amy’s Healthy Baking. If you’re a sucker for chewy cookies and cinnamon tastes, you’ll fall head over heels for these oatmeal cookies. They have the most wonderful texture and a beautifully light and warming flavor. Consider us converts.

Going on vacay? Keep your skin glowing in the tropics!

@motherrose

Ahhh, a tropical vacation.

Nothing makes us feel as connected to Mother Nature as a swim beneath the sea, peeking glimpses at little schools of fish and navigating our way through the coral.

While swimsuits, sunglasses, and sandals are obvious must-packs – there’s a little more to think about in terms of your off-duty beauty regimen. Salt water can be beautifully rejuvenating for your skin – but coupled with sunshine, it can also dry you out. With a tiny bit of extra effort, you can keep your skin looking nourished and glowing in any kind of weather.

 

via Mermaid pinterest

Don’t be a scrooge on the SPF

Most tropical vacays involve a little bit of sun worshipping – so you’re going to need a pack a little ammunition. A powerful SPF will help see you through all your outdoor activities, no matter the temperature. A strong 50+ is necessary, and try to look for one that’s non-greasy to avoid any potential breakouts.

Nourishing lip balm

Something all beauty gurus will tell you about your week beneath the palms? Do not neglect your lips. Your lips can burn just as easily as your cheeks, so make sure you have a moisturizing, SPF lip balm on hand at all times. Re-apply after every meal, swim, and cocktail. No compromise.

Image via Danni Renee Pinterest

Butter me up!

Just like your sun-care regimen, you will need to keep on top of your daily body moisture routine. The salt, sun and fun will inevitably dry out your skin, so make sure you lather on a rich, vitamin-packed body butter after every shower or bath (See Raw Sugar’s range of body butters here). This is your number one tool in keeping skin looking lovely and dewy.

Healing aloe vera gel

If, somehow, you do end up with a little bit of sunburn – don’t be alarmed. You don’t have to suffer through a series of painful, sleepless nights and even more painful showers – aloe vera is here to help. An aloe vera gel will help cool and soothe the skin so you don’t have that burning sensation hanging over your head like a dark could on your sunny holiday. 

Image via @whatwouldvwear

Don’t forget about H2o!

But, wait, isn’t it humid on tropical islands? Yes it is, but because you’ll be out in the sun all day and most likely enjoying a few cocktails – your body will get dehydrated… fast. And we know that dehydration is the fastest way to harm your skin. Keep hydrated by always having a big bottle of water handy – and remember, drink a big glass of water for every alcoholic beverage you consume.

Now that you’re good to go… enjoy your trip!

FAB LAST-MINUTE GIFT IDEAS

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Uh-oh. You’ve done it again. You swore you’d do all your Christmas shopping in November in order to avoid the last-minute panic, but, alas – it’s now December and there’s not a single gift in sight.

Rest assured, we’ve all been there. In fact, we’ve been there so many times we consider ourselves experts in the field of last-minute gift shopping. We’ve used our extensive experience and put it to good use, compiling a list of excellent last-minute Christmas gifts that don’t involve you rushing down to the mall and picking up whatever’s left on the shelves.

What it does involve is a little light reading, the click of a couple buttons, then taking a big nap as a reward for being so very resourceful.

Without further ado…

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BOOKS!

Coffee table books, adult colouring books, or just a plain ol’ novel – whoever you’re buying for, we guarantee there’s a kind of book they’ll love. And they great thing is, books never go out of style – nor do they sell out. You can even get them online for ultimate ease.

READY-TO-GO GIFT PACKAGES

Isn’t it nice when someone else does all the hard work for you? Gift boxes are not only super cute, they’re also super convenient. Get one they’ll really get some use out of – like Raw Sugar’s Christmas Gift Box. It’s full of #rawlovin goodies that your friends will love – and that you’ll feel great about giving. Remember, our products are natural, cruelty-free, eco-friendly and ColdPressed® to seal in spades of delicious fruit nutrients. The perfect gift – available at your nearest Target.

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DIY ARTWORK

Great gifts don’t have to break the bank. Do-it-yourself art or craft is the perfect way to personalize a meaningful gift. We love the idea of printing the covers of your loved ones’ favorite books, and arranging them in a frame to be hung on the wall. Or, you could do a watercolor painting, sketch, or just scour Pinterest for DIY craft ideas.

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BLISS BALLS

Why not make a batch of Christmas-themed bliss balls as a guilt-free gift for your friends? Find your favorite recipe online and then roll them in some festive add-ons – like pistachios and goji berries for a delicious green and red, Christmassy concoction you’d be crazy not to love.

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A SUBSCRIPTION

Does someone you know love a certain magazine? Buying them an annual subscription as a gift is a great way to get them something they’ll really use. The best part? It’s instant! The subscription voucher will be ready to print and use immediately. Perfect for those of us who may or may not leave Christmas gifting to the night before. Oops.

A little Raw Sugar Love

Crafted and produced in sunny SoCal, Raw Sugar Living is a natural lifestyle brand on a mission to promote clean and healthy living through products that are good for the body and nourish the soul.

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