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9 things in your house you have been cleaning the wrong way

qWith warmer weather slowly settling in, it’s time to say goodbye to those grimy windows and mud-stained floors. But before you grab the rubber gloves and cleaning spray to tackle spring cleaning duties, check out these tips from the experts.

Smartphone screens

That cloth that comes with a new pair of glasses isn’t just great for eyewear, but can be used to clean smudges from your cell phone’s screen, suggests Luis Brea, a mobile electronics repair specialist at the mobile phone shop 1800fix.com. For extra cleaning power, apply a puff of LCD screen-cleaning spray to the cloth and wipe it along the screen, making sure to avoid the phone speaker. “A tiny drop of hand sanitizer on the cloth also works,” Brea adds.

Laminate floors

To tackle extra-stubborn messes on laminate flooring, wipe surfaces with a mixture of one cup of white vinegar and one gallon of warm water, said Meg Roberts, president of Molly Maid. Make sure to change the water as it gets dirty. For best results, dry with a clean, dry microfiber mop, though you can let a barely damp floor

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How to Maintain Healthy Hair: 7 Hacks You’ve Been Missing Out On

To condition or not to condition, to oil or not to oil – when it comes to your hair you’ll find all kinds of advice. Mothers’ will tell you to “oil your hair” while your hair dresser will recommend the new IT thing “hair spa, Moroccan oil, strengthening not rebonding and all.” Before you pick your choice of treatment, here are a few things you must know.

The first step in hair-care is your diet and the two most important things in your diet are iron and protein. The hair cells are the fastest growing cells in the body but they are also the first ones to be affected you don’t eat right or suffer with deficiencies because they are not required for survival.

Try and include iron-rich foods like leafy vegetables, fish, pumpkin seeds, beans, chickpea, soybeans and cereals in your diet. Doctors suggest that you consume around  12 mg of iron daily. You also need protein because that’s what strengthens your hair. Include complete proteins which are also rich in amino acids: like cheese, milk, soy, lentils, peas, quinoa and yogurt.

How to Maintain Healthy Hair: A Few Basic Tips

  1. It’s normal to lose 100 to 150 strands of hair a day
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10 Super Simple All Natural Beauty Tips

eThe world would have us believe that there are no simple and inexpensive natural beauty tips and tricks. What makes me say that?  Well, did you know that the beauty industry is a nearly $300 BILLION dollar empire? And that the average woman spends about $15,00 on just makeup in her lifetime! (source) And according to a UK survey, women will spend well over a year of their life applying that makeup. (source) Ouch. That, of course, says nothing of the toxic chemicals so commonly found (with almost zero regulation) in beauty products. Yep. Seems like the world is telling us that we need to spend lots of time, lots of money, and risk our health to be beautiful. Don’t believe it. For starters, let’s get real about the idea of beauty. To me it’s about unmasking the real person, not covering it up. And there are lots of simple ways to thank your body, feel more beautiful, and not have to pay an arm and a leg for it. Here are just 10. They are easy. They are all

Essential Tips for Maintaining Healthy Skin

When is the last time you thought about your skin beyond worrying over a wrinkle or praying that a pimple would be gone before an important event? The reality is that your skin is far more than just a top layer to be washed, creamed and made up. Your skin is your body’s primary defense system against disease. As such, it might be time you treated it with more respect.

Skin: the basics

Your skin is your body’s largest organ. It provides a thin, yet very effective, barrier to billions of health threats (called pathogens) found in the world that would love nothing more than to sneak past your skin’s defenses and make you sick. But if you don’t take care of your skin on a daily basis, it may become dry, rough and chapped, providing an opening for pathogens that could harm your health.

Skin plays other roles in your overall health, as well. It helps keep you cool or warm, insulates you, stores energy and provides sensation through touch so you can interact with the outside world beyond what you see and hear.

Maintaining skin health

Numerous things in the environment are harmful to your skin. Environmental pollution, ultraviolent light (sunshine), extreme temperatures,

13 tips for making the best-ever homemade soup

Making soup is almost as comforting as eating it—and having a pot of it simmering on the stove is one of my favourite parts of cooking during fall and winter. Here are thirteen simple tips to help make your already delicious homemade soup even better!

  1. Double your recipe: Soup recipes are easy to make in large batches, and are one of the most freezer-friendly dishes around. So, double up on ingredients, grab a larger pot and make two meals instead of one. (See tips on freezing below.)
  2. Sweat the vegetables: To make a good soup, you have to build flavours as you go. Vegetables like onion, garlic, celery and carrots—referred to as ‘aromatics’—are part of most soup recipes for this very reason, sautéed in oil or butter as a first step of flavour-making. Be sure they’re cooked long enough to be softened (and release their flavour) before moving on to the next step.
  3. Consider the cook time of each ingredient: A wee pea will cook much faster than a cube of carrot. Consider this and stagger the addition of vegetables so that they’re all finished cooking as close together as possible.
  4. Think spoon size: When chopping vegetables, think about how big you

7 Weight Loss Mistakes Even Healthy Women Make

You snack on fruit, count calories, and get some form of exercise most days. So when you step on that scale and the needle stays put, you wonder what the heck you’re doing wrong. Even with clean eating and  good fitness habits, you may be making a few small mistakes that can lead to a plateau and derail your results. Here’s how to upgrade your already-healthy habits to finally reach your get-slim goal. (Snack AND lose weight with this box of Prevention-approved treats from Bestowed.)

  1. If you count calories… Determine the right intake for you.
    Only 11% of Americans correctly estimate their ideal daily calorie requirements, according to one survey. The rest of us tend to overestimate, says Bonnie Taub-Dix, RD, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Let’s say you assume that consuming 2,000 calories per day will allow you to reach your target weight, but it really takes 1,800: Those extra 200 are enough to keep an additional 20 pounds on your frame.
    Do it better: If 1,800 calories is your max, split it into three 500-calorie meals and one 300-calorie snack.
  2. If you’re consistently active… Rev your routine.
    When you spend a few hours running errands,

10 Tips on Keeping Your Kitchen Clean When You Cook

Of course you want to cook a fresh, hot dinner for your family, but at the end of a long day, it’s a tough task to take on. Not only do you have to prep the food and cook the meal, you have to clean up afterwards! Don’t stress about how long cleaning up might take. Instead, check out these ten tips on keeping your kitchen clean when you cook. If you get it all done while you’re making the meal, you can relax after!

1. Start Fresh and Clean

Starting with a clean kitchen is a time saver. If you already have spills on the counter and dishes piled up in the sink, you won’t really be in the mood to cook a fresh meal. Make time to deep clean your kitchen one day, so you won’t have to clean as much every time you use it.

2. Pick the Right Spot

Where is the best place to cook? Do you have an island in your kitchen, so you have unobstructed counter space to prepare everything before turning around and dumping it in a pan? Or it might make sense to slice and dice right next to the sink, so you can clean the

Homekeeping Hints: How To Clean, Fix & Maintain Tile Floors

You have a new tile floor, and it’s gleaming and gorgeous. Or maybe you have a 70-year-old checkerboard floor that could use some TLC. Either way, this list of tips can help you maintain your floor for years to come.

  1. This may be common sense, but dirt can easily scratch tile surfaces so it’s important to keep your floor clean by regularly sweeping or vacuuming it. A little preventative manintenance goes a long way.
  2. Mop once a week.  For most floors, a solution of 1/4 cup of Castile soap (Like Dr. Bronner’s) and 2 gallons warm water will work. For marble floors, which can dull with the regular use of detergent, try a very diluted, mild solution of dishwashing soap and water.
  3. Another great cleaning solution, especially for greasy floors, is a mix of distilled white vinegar and warm water. Don’t use this solution on marble floors, however, since the vinegar will erode them.
  4. Make the grout look shiny and new. After mopping, make a paste of baking soda and water. Rub the paste into the grout using an old toothbrush (electric ones work great) and rinse off.  If the stains are really bad, you can apply plain baking soda, add a bit of

10 Healthy Living Tips from Dr. Oz


Flossing your teeth every day can add a year to your life. Splitting your multivitamin in half boosts its benefits. These are just two of the super-easy—and incredibly effective—tips Mehmet Oz, M.D., recommends to his patients.

“I believe you should make healthy living a habit,” says Dr. Oz, director of the Cardiovascular Institute and Complementary Medicine Program at New York-Presbyterian Hospital and host of TV’s Dr. Oz Show. “That way you do what’s good for you automatically.” He walks the walk, with an energizing seven-minute yoga routine every morning and a belief that if he’s going to watch TV, he should exercise at the same time. Here, some of Dr. Oz’s favorite stay-well secrets, guaranteed to help you live a healthier life.

  1. Stretch! Morning is best for an energizing yoga-based workout that includes forward bends, reaching for the ceiling and push-ups, says Dr. Oz, who devotes seven minutes to yoga every morning. It helps focus the mind and provides an adrenaline boost.
  2. Take 10,000 steps. Walking elevates your mood, challenges your heart (the best way to keep it fit) and can even help reduce food cravings. Wear a pedometer and strive to take at least 10,000 steps a day, including one

4 Food Tips to Improve Your Arthritis Symptoms

When it comes to arthritis and diet, I’ve done my fair share of myth busting.

In truth, no magic diet is going to make your arthritis — whether it’s osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis or another form — disappear. But as long as you’re realistic about your goals, paying attention to your diet can help ease your symptoms.

Here are a few examples.

Add the power of omega-3

When most people hear “omega-3,” they think of heart health. But these fatty acids have health benefits beyond the heart, including benefits for people with arthritis.

For example, past research has shown an anti-inflammatory effect from omega-3 fatty acids. And reducing inflammation can help you cut down on arthritis flare-ups.

If you want to add more omega-3s to your diet, good sources include wild salmon and other freshwater fish, flaxseed and olive oil. Speaking of olive oil, the high amount of omega-3s in the Mediterranean diet may be part of the reason experts tout it as a good option for people with arthritis.

On the other hand, you should limit your intake of omega-6 fatty acids. These fats are common in red meat and vegetable oils such as corn and sunflower oil. Unlike omega-3, omega-6 seems to actually boost inflammation rather

Eight tips for healthy eating

The key to a healthy diet is to do the following:

  • Eat the right amount of calories for how active you are, so that you balance the energy you consume with the energy you use. If you eat or drink too much, you’ll put on weight. If you eat and drink too little, you’ll lose weight. It is recommended that men have around 2,500 calories a day (10,500 kilojoules). Women should have around 2,000 calories a day (8,400 kilojoules). Most adults are eating more calories than they need, and should eat fewer calories.
  • Eat a wide range of foods to ensure that you’re getting a balanced diet and that your body is receiving all the nutrients it needs.

Get started

These practical tips cover the basics of healthy eating, and can help you make healthier choices:

Base your meals on starchy foods

Starchy foods should make up around one third of the foods you eat. Starchy foods include potatoes, cereals, pasta, rice and bread. Choose wholegrain varieties (or eat potatoes with their skins on) when you can: they contain more fibre, and can help you feel full.

Most of us should eat more starchy foods: try to include at least one starchy food with each main meal. Some people think starchy foods

How to Clean a Living Room

Has it been a while since you cleaned the living room? If it’s time for a big cleanup, don’t worry. There are many ways to get a living room looking better. Choose the steps here that make the most sense to you, depending on how you use your living room and what you keep there. Then, get to it and get it over with. Invite a friend over so you can talk while you clean or just turn on some upbeat music, because if you listen to slow or soft music you will fall asleep! You need something to keep your energy up!


  1. Play some music while you clean.This can help you enjoy your job much more.
  1. Clear the clutter on the floor. Start by removing and recycling or discarding anything that is plainly trash. This gives you a visible start, and it gets the first part done quickly.
  2. Put away any items that don’t belong in the living room. You can either put this stuff away directly or gather it in a box or laundry basket and put it away all at once. If you do collect it first, make sure it gets put away. Remember as you go that any

8 Dermatologist Tips for Healthier Hair

Bad news for modern women: Many of today’s common hair care practices are not great for hair follicles. “The types of alopecia we’re seeing are different than what we were seeing 20 years ago because of the different types of processing that people are doing now,” says Roopal V. Kundu, MD, Associate Professor of Dermatology at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, “Whereas in the ’70s and the early ’80s the hairstyles were more natural, these days there’s a lot more crunched out styles in terms of perms and putting heat in the hair and keeping it straight, and a lot of tension.”

We spoke with Dr. Kundu about styling practices that lead to damage and simple ways to improve hair health. Ready for healthier hair? Check out Dr. Kundu’s tips:

  1. Eat enough protein.

“The basic early advice is make sure you’re looking at your diet, make sure you’re getting enough iron, make sure you’re not anemic, make sure you have enough protein in your diet. Iron and protein are really important for hair health. We always try to make sure people get adequate protein for whatever they’re lifestyle is: If they’re sedentary, they don’t need as much. If they’re active, they

Spring cleaning guide: How to clean your living room in minutes

It’s the time of year when we purge, clean and organize — and we are with you every step of the way.

Whether you have 15 minutes, 30 minutes or an hour, Molly Maid president Meg Roberts is breaking down every room in your home so you can get the job done and do more enjoyable things (basically anything else).

If you have 15 minutes, choose one of the following:

  • Clean the blinds. Close the blinds, then, using a microfiber cloth, start at the top of the blinds and work down, running your hand along each slat to pick up dust. Next, close the blinds in the opposite direction and repeat.
  • Clean the ceiling fans. Turn fans off and place a drop cloth or an old sheet on the floor, covering an area about twice the span of the blades. Using an extendable wooly duster, wipe the span of the blades. Pick up drop cloth and shake outside.
  • Disinfect the remote control. Remove the batteries, then wipe remote with a microfiber cloth slightly moistened with rubbing alcohol. Use a cotton swab moistened with alcohol to clean in between the buttons. Replace batteries.

If you have 30 minutes, choose one from above and one of the following:

  • Clean

Tackle the toughest stains: 5 secret cleaning products you already own

Use baking soda for that dirty roasting pan

Still scrubbing that roasting pan’s burnt bits from last night’s dinner? Reach for the baking soda and get your life back.

Simply take about a quarter cup of your favorite dish detergent (powder or liquid) and mix it with a quarter cup of baking soda. Spread the mixture on the bottom of the pan, then fill it with hot water and let it soak overnight. Dump out the water in the morning, wash as normal and you have yourself a clean pan!

Treat stained mugs with toothpaste

Get your tea-and-coffee-stained mugs looking as good as new with a little help from…toothpaste! The abrasive texture is perfect for getting gunk out of your mugs, and even for tackling dirty faucet. Make sure that you’re using regular white toothpaste — not gel.

Spray laundry stain remover on pesky stickers

If you have ever struggled to get those sticky price tags off of your new picture frame or ceramic mug, here is your answer: laundry stain remover. Just make sure the remover contains petroleum distillate, which is what actually dissolves the residue.

Simply spray it on the tag on the glass or ceramic and let it sit for 10-20 seconds, then clean

Kitchen Cleaning Tips

Cleaning up the kitchen is part of cooking. Not only is it easier to cook and bake in a clean kitchen, but clean surfaces and storage containers will keep your family healthier and safer. See Food Safety for more storage and cleaning tips. Take some time to learn these easy tips and preventative measures and before you know it your kitchen will be automatically cleaner and less cluttered. Make cleaning second nature with these kitchen cleaning tips and you’ll save time and money.

General Tips

  • Have a place for everything. It’s much easier to use a utensil or appliance, clean it and put it away when it has a home. I use foil as an example in my kitchen. I have a special drawer that is used just for foil, plastic wrap and parchment paper. Those items are always easy to find, and are put away after each use because they have a special home.
  • Don’t mix ammonia and bleach because it will create toxic fumes.
  • Identify spots in your kitchen that accumulate clutter and take a few minutes every day to clear those spots and place objects in their correct homes.
  • Try to end each day with a clean, empty kitchen sink. Run the

9 Tips For Building a Loving Relationship

How many of us have learned how to build loving relationships? Where did we learn? At home? At school? There is an art and science to building strong relationships. These indispensable tips were written with romantic relationships in mind, but with a little modification you can apply them to your friendships, family and even work relationships.

  1. Create a safe environment where you can trust and share openly without being afraid.

Don’t interrupt, even if you need to put your hand over your mouth to stop yourself. Learn to fight fairly. No name calling. Don’t make threats. Apologize when you know you should. If you’re too angry to really listen, stop! Go into another room, take space for yourself, breathe and “calm down.”

Remember: your partner is not the enemy.

  1. Separate the facts from the feelings.

What beliefs and feelings get triggered in you during conflicts? Ask yourself: Is there something from my past that is influencing how I’m seeing the situation now? The critical question you want to ask: Is this about him or her, or is it really about me? What’s the real truth? Once you’re able to differentiate facts from feelings, you’ll see your partner more clearly and be able to

12 Ways To Never Get Diabetes

Nearly 25% of Americans are thought to have prediabetes—a condition of slightly elevated blood sugar levels that often develops into diabetes within 10 years—but only 4% of people know it. What’s worse, of those who are aware, less than half really tried to reduce their risk by losing weight, eating less, and exercising more. These are just a few of the good-for-you habits that can reverse prediabetes and ensure you never get the real thing, which can mean a lifetime of drugs and blood sugar monitoring, an increased risk of heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and other scary health threats. Read on for 12 healthy lifestyle habits everyone can start today.

  1. Nudge the scale
    Shedding even 10 pounds can significantly slash your risk. Even extremely overweight people were 70% less likely to develop diabetes when they lost just 5% of their weight—even if they didn’t exercise. If you weigh 175 pounds, that’s a little less than 9 pounds! Use our calorie calculator to see how many calories you consume—and how many you need to shave off your diet—if you want to lose a little.
  2. Pick the right appetizer
    May we recommend the salad? Eating greens with a vinaigrette before a starchy entrée

Diabetes prevention: 5 tips for taking control

When it comes to type 2 diabetes — the most common type of diabetes — prevention is a big deal. It’s especially important to make diabetes prevention a priority if you’re at increased risk of diabetes, for example, if you’re overweight or have a family history of the disease.

Diabetes prevention is as basic as eating more healthfully, becoming more physically active and losing a few extra pounds — and it’s never too late to start. Making a few simple changes in your lifestyle now may help you avoid the serious health complications of diabetes down the road, such as nerve, kidney and heart damage. Consider the latest diabetes prevention tips from the American Diabetes Association.

Tip 1: Get more physical activity

There are many benefits to regular physical activity. Exercise can help you:

  • Lose weight
  • Lower your blood sugar
  • Boost your sensitivity to insulin — which helps keep your blood sugar within a normal range

Research shows that both aerobic exercise and resistance training can help control diabetes, but the greater benefit comes from a fitness program that includes both.

Tip 2: Get plenty of fiber

It’s rough, it’s tough — and it may help you:

  • Reduce your risk of diabetes by improving your blood sugar control
  • Lower your risk

How to Lose Weight: 40 Fast, Easy Tips

  1. Write down what you eat for one week and you will lose weight. Studies found that people who keep food diaries wind up eating about 15 percent less food than those who don’t. Watch out for weekends: A University of North Carolina study found people tend to consume an extra 115 calories per weekend day, primarily from alcohol and fat. Then cut out or down calories from spreads, dressings, sauces, condiments, drinks, and snacks; they could make the difference between weight gain and loss.
  2. Add 10 percent to the amount of daily calories you think you’re eating. If you think you’re consuming 1,700 calories a day and don’t understand why you’re not losing weight, add another 170 calories to your guesstimate. Chances are, the new number is more accurate. Adjust your eating habits accordingly.
  3. Get an online weight loss buddy to lose more weight. A University of Vermont study found that online weight-loss buddies help you keep the weight off. The researchers followed volunteers for 18 months. Those assigned to an Internet-based weight maintenance program sustained their weight loss better than those who met face-to-face in a support group.
  4. Get a mantra.
    You’ve heard of a self-fulfilling prophecy? If

30 Beauty Tips: Get Rid of Acne for Smooth Skin

  1. Slather on the sunscreen. We know, we know—you’ve heard it a million times, but wearing sunscreen is the single easiest way to look younger for life. “Ninety percent of wrinkles are from sun exposure,” says Day. “It’s so much easier to prevent the damage than it is to fix it afterwards.” That means no slacking during winter months either, when rays are just as strong and can reflect off of buildings and sidewalks. Look for a formula that offers broad-spectrum protection to guard against UVA rays (the ones that cause premature aging) and UVB rays (one of the main causes of skin cancer). Try Philosophy Shelter Broad Spectrum Sunscreen in SPF30.
  2. Clean your makeup brushes. A British study found that 72% of women never wash their brushes or sponges, even though they harbor dirt and bacteria which can cause breakouts. “You should wash loose powder brushes every two to three weeks, and those used to apply foundation once a week,” says Jessica Wu, an LA-based dermatologist and author of Feed Your Face. Mix a couple of drops of gentle facial cleanser or shampoo and lukewarm water in a cup, swish your brushes around, rinse with lukewarm water, pat dry,