Our Favorite Products: Yoga Balm

Being an independent salon, Indigo has the freedom to choose the best products out there. We are not brand exclusive, so we have the freedom to hand pick our favorites in each category. This series is going to unpack all the wonderful reasons we chose each brand on our shelves.
Now, on to one of my absolute favorite products that is on our shelves: Yoga Balm. I often refer to Yoga Balm as my “Windex”, for fans of My Big Fat Greek Wedding, because pretty much any ailment that may befall me, you’ll hear me say “Put some Yoga Balm on it!” Most people have used a similar product for muscle aches, such as tiger balm, bio freeze, icy hot, etc. What sets Yoga Balm apart is that it is 100% organic and can work for 4-6 hours. It is also highly concentrated, like many of our other products, so a little bit goes a long way. I recommend starting with a pea size and adding more if you feel you need it.
If you have had a spa service with us, or been set up with a neck wrap at the front desk while waiting, you have probably experienced Yoga Balm before. The first smell most people associate with it is peppermint, but it packs so much more. It is made with ethically sourced bees wax, which on top of being anti-inflammatory, keeps the product on the skin without transferring to your clothes and causing “grease” stains. Yoga Balm uses essential oils such as Frankincense, peppermint, hempseed, and St. John’s Wort to naturally reduce inflammation, pain and promote new cell growth.
Being in an industry where you’re constantly on your feet can lead to aches and pains, so YB is always in my medicine cabinet. However, my personal favorite use for Yoga Balm is when I have sinus/allergy issues. I will take a small bit of it and swipe it on my shower wall before a shower, slightly out of the water. When you take a hot shower or bath, it creates a pepperminty steam that will open up your sinuses and clear your head. You can also take a dab of it and place on your temples, behind your ears and under your nose for a similar effect, just keep it away from your eyes.
We use Yoga Balm in several of our spa services, including massages. It can also be found in our cooling foot mask, in our spa pedicure, during the hot towel application. If you haven’t experienced it before, or have and loved it, you can always request it in your neck/shoulder ritual.

Our Favorite Products: Davines

Being an independent salon, Indigo has the freedom to choose the best products out there. We are not brand exclusive, so we have the freedom to cherry-pick our favorites in each category. This series is going to unpack all the wonderful reasons we chose each brand on our shelves.

Brace yourselves, because this is the big one: Davines. This will be a longer post, because there is SO much to love about Davines! I could do an entire blog series about all the reasons we love Davines, so know that this is just the tip of the iceberg.

I personally have worked with four different color lines, and six different major hair product lines. The reason that Davines is unique from a lot of these brands is their commitment to ethical sourcing in beauty. Part of this is because they are an Italian based company, and Italy’s standards for their cosmetics are a cut above. Not only have they completely banned animal testing (woo-hoo!) but just like our food in America, the regulations on what we allow into the products we put on our bodies are behind the times. America just recently increased their banned ingredient list from 8 to 11, where Italy has over 1,200 banned ingredients. While ignorance may be bliss, doing some research will make you want to chuck a lot of, even longtime “family” brands, in the garbage. Did you know “No Tears” baby shampoo has numbing agents in it? It’s not “gentler” for baby, it can be harming them if it gets in their eyes, they just can’t feel it. Knowing what’s in our brand makes me love it even more.

Davines’ commitment to sustainable beauty can be seen through their dedication to biodiversity, working with Italian farmers to support generations-old family farms that produce the ingredients in every Essential Haircare product. In fact, if you look at the label of each product in the Essentials line, you can actually find the ingredient, farmer and location of each farm right on the front on each label. The Essential Haircare line’s containers are also food grade plastic so they are able to be reused and repurposed.

Every Davines factory is wind, solar and water powered, but Davines goes a step further and plants trees in developing nations to offset and carbon emissions they may produce. Davines’ is also a B Certified Corporation, which recognizes their commitment to the Earth and sustainable beauty practices.

We’ve all used at least one “all natural” product that just doesn’t cut it as well as the original, (talking to you, all-natural deodorant) so I was a little bit skeptical switching to a brand as natural as Davines. Can it get my hair clean? Can low ammonia color make my red/copper that I have been wearing for over a decade, and it stick without fading? I’m naturally a bit of a “prove it” person, and man alive, Davines did! I have never been able to say this with any other brand before: but there’s not one product on a Davines’ shelf that I wouldn’t recommend to at least one person.

Let’s also talk about the fact that to wash my thick head of hair, it only takes about a nickel size of shampoo. Which, oddly enough, is a huge adjustment. Because Davines doesn’t have artificial waxes found in every drug store shampoo, (and some professional brands) I have found that I actually only need to shampoo my scalp. Using such a little amount of product means a liter of shampoo can last me (if I’m the only one using it) roughly a year and some change. Also, fine haired clients rejoice, my baby fine hair stays clean for 3-4 days with Momo. If you have fine hair, you know what an accomplishment this is. Also, the longer I use it the healthier my hair gets, even through blonding processes, so the less repairing products and detanglers I need.

As I said, Davines has something for everyone including color correcting/enhancing conditioners (every ash blonde needs the silver conditioner,) silicone free hair oils, hair regrowth systems and just about anything you can think of.

One of my favorite lines is the Authentic Line. There are only 4 products in the line, as every product has multiple uses. Authentic is perfect for people who travel or your significant other who won’t give up the 3 in 1 “do it all” shower product. Authentic is 98-100% organic and covers hair, face and body, so the nectar will get you clean and then you choose your level of hydration with your second product. The Authentic Butter is my personal favorite for winter! My hair and skin get extremely dry in the winter months and only having to buy one product, instead of a new facial moisturizer, deep conditioner and body lotion, is the way to go! Bonus: it’s the perfect tattoo aftercare as well. It doesn’t have any harsh alcohols that can irritate a new tattoo and it’s all natural. If you purchase any two Authentic products, you will receive a free in-house shampoo, deep conditioning treatment and blowout with the Authentic line, so you can experience it for yourself!

Our Favorite Products: Glo

Syd makeup photo

Being an independent salon, Indigo has the freedom to choose the best products out there. We are not brand exclusive, so we have the freedom to cherry-pick our favorites in each category. This series is going to unpack all the wonderful reasons we chose each brand on our shelves.
When we tell clients that we use Glo makeup, most have never heard of the brand, and the ones who have jump for joy. Our goal, in all things at Indigo, is to focus on wellness inside and out. Glo aligns with that goal perfectly. The entire line is infused with skincare, which you can absolutely feel. My skin tends to be on the dryer side, and I always struggle with finding a foundation with high enough coverage to cover my rosy complexion, that doesn’t leave my skin thirstier than before (looking at you, makeup line created by a *ahem* famous tattoo artist). After taking Glo off, I was surprised how soft my skin felt. Glo’s makeup base contain a vitamins A, C, E and green tea extract. As we all know, the healthier your skin is, the better your makeup looks, and when your makeup has skin care in it, the more you wear it, the better it looks.
If any of you use our other products, like Davines, Yoga Balm or Comfort Zone, you know with each of these, a little bit goes a long long way, which takes some adjusting. Our products are highly concentrated, so maybe the first time you used Davines at home you used a whole handful and found yourself rinsing for a good long while. I absolutely made that mistake the first time I used Glo. I squeezed a dime size out on the back side of my hand (about 5x the amount you need) and hated it because it looked cakey and thick. This was 100% operator error, and once I figured out how to use it I fell in love! A pea size can cover my entire face in full coverage? Is this real life? Your girl is on a budget, so having to purchase my makeup less is for sure a bonus.
Let’s also talk about their contour palette. I am, shall we say, contour challenged. They come in two shades: fair to light and medium to dark . Each palette comes with two contour colors (warm and cool) and two highlight colors (matte and shimmer), but the lifesaver is the map inside the lid with exactly where to put each. They are highly pigmented, just like their eyeshadows and blushes, so one palette will last you awhile. They stay put all day, and again, are so simple even those of us who struggle can use them with ease.
For those of you who love our furry friends, you’ll be happy to know that Glo has joined PETA’s “Beauty Without Bunnies” program, which means none of their products have been tested on animals, nor have any individual ingredients.
Come in and find your new favorite Glo product. With your $50 purchase, you get a free makeup application!

Protecting the Body by Protecting the Immune System

After the holidays end, we are often left sitting with tinsel in our hair, an extra ten pounds or so, in a pile of ribbon, with full bellies and fuller hearts. While it can be the most joyous time of the year, all the sugar and carbs can take a toll on our bodies. Being around all that family; and the hugs, kisses and the little ones who cough directly into your mouth without warning, is especially taxing on our immune systems. Between that and flu season, we thought it would be especially important to focus on the ways to strengthen your immune system, especially the healing power of the foods we eat.

While most people reach for certain foods to solve certain problems (i.e. orange juice for a cold), keep in mind preventive care is a better option. Think of it like deodorant: It’s helpful after you need it, but you need less if you get ahead of the problem. Arm your body to fight sickness before it takes hold.

Often our go-to when we are sick is Vitamin C, but do you know why it works? Vitamin C increases your white blood cell count, which helps fight infection in the body. Citrus fruits (such as grapefruit, oranges, tangerines, lemons, limes, and clementines) are excellent sources of this super vitamin, but it is found in lots of other foods as well. Other excellent sources of Vitamin C are spinach, red bell peppers, broccoli, papaya and kiwi. Keep in mind our body does not produce or store Vitamin C, so integrating it into your daily diet is crucial during sick season.

While papaya has 224% of our daily recommended dose of vitamin C (take that, oranges!), it also has lots of other health benefits. They have a digestive enzyme called papain that has anti-inflammatory effects and helps gut health. Papayas also have decent amount of potassium, B vitamins, and folate, all of which are beneficial to your overall health.

Vitamin E is also crucial in immune system health. It is a powerful antioxidant and helps regulate the immune system. Sunflower seeds are full of this powerhouse, with a whopping 82% of your daily recommendation in just a quarter cup serving! As many of us are not often on a baseball field in the middle of January, and spitting shells in your kitchen floor is frowned upon by most, unshelled sunflower seeds are excellent on a salad, and can give it a nice crunch! Almonds, avocados and dark leafy greens are also full of Vitamin E.

Zinc is also extremely important when it comes to immune system health. While it isn’t most people’s go-to when they are sick, shellfish can be an excellent source of zinc. Crab, mussels, clams and lobster can help kick that cold. Legumes like chickpeas and beans, eggs and seeds can also boost your zinc intake. So next time you’re sick, slap on a bib and break out the butter! In the name of health, of course.

Some things to avoid if you’re feeling under the weather are gluten, red meat, dairy products, eggs and caffeine. While these may see obvious, some fruits and vegetables can have harming effects as well, such as night shade vegetables. Night shade vegetables are very common in most foods we eat and include: white potatoes, tomatoes and tomatillos, eggplant, cayenne pepper, paprika, goji berries and tobacco.

If you are more interested in learning about the foods you eat being a healing tool, Dr. Andrew Weil is a well respected expert on the topic. He has countless books on the subject, with several books on specific ailments.

We also have several ways to detox your body here at Indigo Salon and Wellness. Comfort Zone, our skin care line, has a detoxifying night mask from skin regimen, designed to eliminate your skin of metabolic waste . It fills your skin with superfood extracts including wild indigo, maqui berry & spinach. We also offer ionic foot detoxes, in which your feet are paced in water with an ionizer that sends electric impulses through your body and stimulate cells to remove impurities at a cellular level. Based on the colors that your water produces during the 30 minute process, you can see what systems of the body are holding the most toxins.

Massage can be an excellent tool to rid your body of toxins that you hold deep in your muscular tissue. As an added benefit at Indigo, we use healing crystals in many of our massages, such as snowflake obsidian, smokey quartz, and the ultimate purification stone: clean quartz. We also retail these stones, so you can cleanse at home in a bath, or simply keep them on you as pocket stones.

As always, the more water you drink, the more quickly your bodies natural filtration systems are able to move all impurities out of the body, so don’t forget about those fluids! Love and light to you. And be well, my friends.

Foods & Inflammation

If you have ever attempted a diet, you know that changing your diet can come with some unexpected side effects. In high school I tried the Atkins Diet (or at least my take on it) and was stunned that eating almost exclusively quarter pounders with cheese (without the bun) somehow lead to me dropping almost 30 pounds in just a few months. This weight, of course, came right back as soon as I rekindled my love affair with pasta, but it led me to discover: what you put in your body matters. There are plenty of fad diets to choose from: eating for your body type, eating for your blood type, juice cleanses, no/low carb (including Paleo, Atkins, South Beach and Keto) and Whole 30 just to name a few. The question is, how do you know what’s right for you? Simple: your body will tell you by the way you feel.
Here at Indigo, we focus not only on beauty, but also on wellness, because we believe that when you look better, you feel better. So this blog post is the first of four blogs focusing on altering your diet to use the food you eat to heal, not harm. This is not about weight loss, or the way your body looks, but about how your body feels. Whether you’re looking to boost your immune system for flu season or just reduce your aches and pains, we’re here to provide some guidance.
While researching foods that cause inflammation, I was extremely surprised to find out all the different ways that inflammation affects the body. Asthma, skin issues such as psoriasis, joint aches and pains, and even your gut health are all affected by inflammation. Just as surprising are the long list of foods that can cause, (and some that can help), these issues.

Help Harm
Fruits: strawberries, blueberries, cherries and oranges Sugar and High-Fructose Corn Syrup
Fatty fish like salmon, tuna and mackerel Artificial Trans Fats
Olive Oil Vegetable and Seed Oils
Dark leafy vegtables Processed Meat
Avacado Processed snack foods
Coconut Desserts, such as cookies and candy
Green Tea Excess alcohol
Almonds and walnuts Sugary Drinks
Beans and lentils Excessive carbs
Olives White bread

Not all inflammatory foods are bad for you, though. Night shade vegetables are a known cause of inflammation. This can include white potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, bell peppers, cayenne pepper, paprika and more. These foods are especially detrimental to people who suffer from arthritis.
If you deal with inflammation, we have some other remedies as well. Lots of essential oils can help reduce the effects of inflammation. Thyme, clove, rose, eucalyptus, fennel and bergamot can all reduce inflammation, but frankincense is the real powerhouse. It can get pricey, so finding a blend or balm (such as Yoga Balm, $48) is an excellent way to get all the benefits without the hefty price tag.
Massage is also a great way to rid your body of inflammation and toxins. We encourage you to try our new massage therapists Monica and Toni, who will work Yoga Balm and other essential oils into your customized spa service.
Stay tuned for the following blog posts about how to use the food you eat to heal your body.

Summer Lovin’… Your Hair!

Summer comes with all kinds of amazing things: vacations, pool time, windows down and of course, sunshine. These are some of the best parts about summer, and definitely good for the soul, but these things can sometimes wreak havoc on your hair and skin. We are here to help you out with that! We have some products and healthy habits to save your hair so your summer is nothing but sunshine!

The biggest concern I get from clients is what all the sand and surf that comes with summer will do to your color. First, let me start by letting you all know about something we call “The Investment Protector”: Minu Hair Serum. This little bottle packs quite a punch by protecting against UVA and UVB rays, that can fade color. It’s main focus is smoothing down the hair’s cuticle (outermost layer), allowing it to reflect more light, intensifying your color. Smoothing down the outer layer also helps hold all the color in the hair strand when things like water, wind and the like would try to pull them out.
After the sun, the biggest summertime cause of color fading is over washing. So what do you do when it’s so hot outside you’re sweating as soon as you step out the door, but want to avoid over washing to protect your color? While you may have tried dry shampoo before, know that they are not all are created equal, and there is an art to getting the dry shampoo routine down. My two personal favorite dry shampoos are Evo and Paul Mitchell, but Evo’s scent makes it my #1. First, think of dry shampoo like deodorant: it works if you put it on after you need it, but it works much better when used ahead of time! Apply by parting your hair and applying on the scalp and hair about one inch from the scalp. Continue to part your hair into sections, (parts should be about one inch apart) focusing on areas where you usually feel the most buildup. This is usually in the crown and around the ears. Then, using the same circular motions with your fingers as when you shampoo in the shower, “wash” your hair by spreading the product with your fingers. This allows the product to spread evenly. Then (and this is where the *magic* happens) let it sit. Take the dog out, finish your morning routine, or even sleep in it! Dry shampoo is a powder base, so it needs time to absorb the oil on your scalp. After that you can brush it out, starting at your scalp, or you can leave it in for some extra volume. This process also helps if you love to work out! Just leave the product in while you exercise.
Our staff’s personal favorite summer activity is pool time! However chlorine can be a nightmare for everyone. Chlorine causes different struggles: blondes go green, wee ones fine hair turns into a tangled mess and it can fade your color investment. So, how do we stop that from happening? Stop the chlorine from getting into your hair in the first place! Think of your hair as a sponge: it can only absorb so much. So if you don’t want it to fill up with chlorine water, give it good stuff to soak up instead. While you can use regular water, (from the shower), I recommend Oi All In One Milk. It works with all hair textures, even baby fine hair like my own. Also, because of the roucou oil in all Oi products, it creates an additional barrier. Since chemistry class taught us oil and water don’t mix, this allows even less chlorine water to get in. Bonus: It also protects against UV rays.
Oi All In One Milk will help protect blondes against the “ghastly green”. If you spend a lot of time in the pool, or start to notice a shift in your color, a good clarifying shampoo, such as Davines’ Solu, will get you back to your blonde. You can take it home and incorporate it into your weekly hair routine, or come in and let the girls at Indigo work it into your usual pampering.
If humidity is your usual summer woe, there are two main options: products and chemical treatments. Smoothing products, such as the Love Smoothing line, or Relaxing Moisturizing Fluid are great for taming down the poof, in combination with blow drying. If you are looking for something to help keep your hair smooth when air drying, the Keratherapy Brazilian Renewal is a dream come true. Enriched with keratin, collagen, and argan oil, it leaves your hair soft and frizz free, while maintaining your curl. It takes around an hour and a half in the salon, is formaldehyde free and virtually fume free. This is the ideal service if you love the water during the summer, but don’t have time to blow dry your lake hair, or just want to enjoy your natural texture, minus the fluff.
When it’s 90+ degrees outside, a lot of us reach for the hair tie to get the hair up off our necks. Unfortunately, this can cause a lot of breakage, if you’re using the wrong tools. If, when removing your hair tie, you have more than a piece or two of hair attached to it, it is damaging your hair. The ponytail holder makes a huge difference. Hair bands free of metal, exposed rubber, and other things that can snag and grab hair are ideal. The best option is Invisibobble. It is a plastic band in a spiral shape that prevents creasing, tension spots and breakage. No matter what you are using, you also always want to be sure the hair isn’t pulled too tight under the hair tie, by moving the base of the ponytail back and forth to loosen it, so you don’t cause breakage on your hairline with unnecessary longterm tension.
Summer should be all sunshine and good vibes, and hopefully these tips will help get you there! As always, if you have any questions along the way, your stylist would love to help get you your best hair, no matter the season!

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