Meadowfoam flowers

Carrier Oil Close-Up: Meadowfoam Seed Oil

When comparing carrier oils, it's not just about "is this oil comedogenic?" or "is this oil good for _____ skin issue?" To make an informed decision for any carrier oil, you need to look at its chemical composition to determine its usefulness for the particular task at hand or client in question. While the therapeutic value of the oil is key, it's also necessary to determine the oil's environmental impact and stability. Meadowfoam seed oil is an example of a carrier oil that ticks off many of those boxes.

The market has been abuzz about meadowfoam seed oil for good reason.

Meadowfoam flowersWhat’s amazing about meadowfoam seed oil is not only its shelf life which we will get to in a minute, but also its environmental impact.

Meadowfoam (Limnanthes alba) seed oil is produced from the seeds of white meadowfoam flowers (that kind of resemble a sunny side up egg). It is a plant that is helpful to the farmer and yields a beautiful oil. It was initially used to replace sperm whale oil in cosmetics. Then farmers started using it in crop rotation, because it helps promote soil resistance to pathogens, and naturally controls weed populations. The leftover seeds that have been extracted will then be fed to the cows as part of their diet, so very little of this plant’s life cycle is wasted.

It's both budget and eco-friendly.

Not only is meadowfoam seed oil ecologically smart but it's budget friendly. Its price point is on the lower side compared to other carrier oils, but meadowfoam's real claim to fame is its incredible shelf stability. Many carrier oils are notoriously unstable, meaning their fatty acids and unsaponifiables are highly susceptible to oxidation and degradation. Those oils either require fast formulation, refrigeration or storage in expensive violet UV glass bottles, or an antioxidant added to avoid it going rancid after a couple of months. Some oils are so delicate that even if you keep them in the refrigerator, once applied to the skin, they oxidize rapidly, which contributes to inflammation and clogged pores.

That's not the case with meadowfoam, which is shelf stable without refrigeration or other interventions for 5 years. So you can purchase bulk quantities of meadow foam seed oil and get years of safe use out of it without having to worry about rancidity (it's incredibly frustrating to have to pitch carrier oil that has gone bad before you can use it).

What makes a carrier oil like meadowfoam so stable?

Single bond hydrocarbon chain makes a very stable oil like meadowfoam seed oil
The green spheres represent single bonded carbon atoms. The white spheres are the stabilizing hydrogen atoms.

It all comes down to its chemistry. What makes a carrier oil stable or unstable has to do with its carbon backbone--or carbon chain. The more carbon atoms on the chain, the more stable the oil is, since there are more opportunities for stabilizing hydrogen atoms to bond to them.

Ninety-seven percent of this unique oil's chemical composition is made up by 20+ carbon atoms, which qualifies it as an extremely long carbon chain, or an incredibly stable carrier oil. This is what gives it its 5+ year shelf life. In addition, the oil has naturally occurring tocopherol (Vitamin E), which naturally provides antioxidant support to boost its stability.

What this means in practical benefits is that meadowfoam seed oil won’t go rancid in the bottle, on the shelf, or your skin.

How to use meadowfoam seed oil

Meadowfoam seed oil isn't just stable on its own, but it's also a great stabilizer for other carrier oils that you love (such as rosehip seed oil), but are more delicate and prone to rancidity. Blending delicate oils with a stable oil like meadowfoam seed oil helps make the entire blend more shelf stable. This way you can still reap the rewards of the fragile oils, without worry.

Aside from its stability, eco-friendliness, and cost effectiveness, meadowfoam is also nourishing in its own right. It's rich in phytosterols, and carotenoid antioxidants, and other phytonutrients and skin-healthy fatty acids.

We recommend cold-pressed meadowfoam seed oil, as the extraction process allows the phytonutrients to stay intact more than solvent extraction or expeller pressing. This allows your skin to get more benefit from this amazing plant oil.

How does meadowfoam seed oil feel?

Meadowfoam seed oil benefitsAn oil that has this much stability might lead you to think that meadowfoam's super heavy and viscous. Quite the contrary! It glides on beautifully and absorbs quickly for most skin types and combinations.

Is meadowfoam seed oil worth adding to your collection?

There is really very little negative about this oil. The only potential downside is how challenging it can be to find a cold-pressed, organic version. This is due to meadowfoam's increased use in farming taking priority over its use in cosmetics.

So with its beneficial ecological impact, long shelf life, and affordable price point, you can buy it in bulk quantities without having to worry about it going rancid before you can use it.

Because of all these benefits, we consider meadowfoam seed oil a slam dunk addition to your treatment room and skincare routine.

What's your experience with meadowfoam seed oil?

How do you use it in your skincare business or practice? We'd love to hear from you in the comments below!

About the author:

CNAPVicki Parra of Why Not You Skincare student, Vicki Parra, is a licensed aesthetician, molecular biologist, and is the founder and formulator of Why Not You Skincare--a plant-based line of fully customizable skincare products that gives you a voice in your skincare. Connect further with Vicki on her website and Instagram.

* This post contains affiliate links.

9 Ways to Help Your Body Detox Naturally

"Detox" and "cleansing" are two of the most common buzzwords in the world of skin wellness during the spring and summer months. Many of our Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioners® report that detox programs and seasonal cleanses are some of the most common topics that they get asked about from their clients. They are rampant on social media among wellness bloggers and influencers. Juice cleanses and detox programs are also widely available anywhere from the supplement aisle at the health food store, to spas and wellness centers, to doctors' offices, to health websites. But do these programs work? Are they safe? What are the risks?

Daily smoothies are a great way to help the body detox naturally.While doing a structured cleanse or detox program for a set period of time may be beneficial for some people, it’s not always a good idea for others. Most cleanses extremely restrictive and specific diets, herbs, and supplements and do not take into account a person's state of health and mental wellbeing.

According to a 2019 article in the Wall Street Journal, many dietitians have real concerns about these "clean eating" trends, because of increased prevalence of an eating disorder called "orthorexia nervosa. an eating disorder concerned with an obsession with health, wellness and clean eating. Orthorexia involves food and nutrient restriction, which can lead to lowered metabolism, lowered sex hormones and loss of menstruation, brittle hair and dry skin, bone loss, and cardiovascular issues."

A 2018 study also uncovered a link between juice cleanse diets and orthorexia, as well as purging disorder. The study's conclusion noted that "in the non-clinical environment, there is an institutionalization of eating habits that are dangerous to the health. This 'detox' is not only physiologically harmful, but it is not proved to provide long-term help in mental health either. As a solution, we advocate developing an appropriate health communication plan for misconceptions about healthy lifestyle and eating, and also a promotion of psychotherapeutic opportunities."

NAA Advisory Board Member and Clinical Nutritionist, Jennifer Fugo, has serious concerns about DIY cleanses and restrictive diets. She says:

Jennifer Fugo"As a clinical nutritionist, I find the overuse of detoxes and elimination diets to be incredibly troubling specifically because of the damage that they can cause. While I realize that people mean well, excessive elimination of various foods from one's diet (without clear cause) can lead to nutrient deficiencies, orthorexia, and increased reactivity to food (making it really difficult to reintroduce later on). All of this increases stress and other factors that can actually end up making your skin worse... and worst-case scenario, can land you in the hospital."

For more information from Jennifer on this topic, check out this episode of The Healthy Skin Show.

Is it possible to help support detox naturally, without juice cleanses and detox programs?

Our philosophy is that detoxification should be supported on a regular basis through the diet and lifestyle methods. While a cleanse or detox may be appropriate for some people, an overall healthy lifestyle is best to achieve and maintain desired results. Integrating healthy eating and lifestyle habits into your lifestyle will help you achieve results over time. You will likely be able to sustain these methods for the long-term since they fit right into your daily life.

Here are our top 9 ways to help your body detox naturally:

1. Add more greens into the diet…have green smoothies with breakfasts and for afternoon snacks, have a big salad with every meal, have sautéed or steamed greens as a side dish, etc.

2. Make sure you drink enough water at room temperature or warmer. Warm water helps to “unclog the drains,” as one of our favorite teachers Dr. John Douillard says.

3. Add more whole grains into your diet like brown rice and quinoa–the fiber helps move waste out of the body.

4. Add raw, fermented foods into your diet like a good quality probiotic, kombucha, raw sauerkraut or cultured veggies, coconut water or almond milk kefir (not a big fan of milk kefir or yogurt because the dairy is mucus forming and acidic), or raw apple cider vinegar

5. Add movement like rebounding, jogging, kundalini or power yoga, dance, or other types of exercise.

6. Dry brushing of the skin is great for helping the lymphatic system transport waste to be filtered and then eliminated.

7. Weekly salt baths (preferably after dry brushing) are fantastic to help the body detox through the skin.

8. Practice daily breathing exercises like pranayama or Dr. Andrew Weil’s 4-7-8 breathing technique HERE–deep breathing is great for stress management, and spiritual and emotional wellness, but it is also great for detoxifying the blood and the respiratory system.

9. Switch to natural and organic household cleaning and personal care products. Consuming substances like pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics and hormones in animal products, preservatives, synthetic fragrances, endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and other nasties is very hard on our bodies. The human body was not designed to handle the amount of environmental toxicants we face on a regular basis. The more we can reduce our intake of these toxicants, the more efficiently the body can handle the endotoxins that it produces on its own, or that have already accumulated.

The more you can do to support your body's overall health on a daily basis, the more efficiently it can detox naturally.

We're not saying to never do a cleanse or go on a detox again. However, we do feel that they are too often used as a substitute for overall healthy living. A seasonal cleanse cannot undo the effects of an otherwise unhealthy year; but with the right support from a licensed or properly qualified nutrition or healthcare professional, they might be a good jump start for those new to healthy eating, or for overall maintenance.

What's your experience with juice cleanses or detox programs?

Leave a comment about aromatherapy in the spa!Have you ever tried one? Do your clients ask you about them? What are your thoughts or questions? Please share in the comments below.

Disclaimer: The information in this article and on this website is for educational and informational purposes only. It is not to be taken as personal nutrition or medical advice, nor it is a substitute for seeking services from a licensed nutritionist or healthcare professional. We highly recommend discussing questions or concerns about your personal eating habits and health with your preferred licensed healthcare professional.

Jackie Johnson joins the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance's Advisory Board

Advisory Board Highlight: Jackie Johnson

We are so excited to welcome Jackie Johnson to the Nutritional Aesthetics® Alliance's Advisory Board! We have been searching for an herbalist and farmer for the Board, who not only shares our passion for advancing an integrative approach to healthy skin, but also who has a deep understanding of the importance of nutrient density (and how where/how plants are grown affects that), and the role of herbs in skincare and skin wellness. Jackie certainly fit that bill!

Jackie Johnson is a Holistic Brand Strategist who founded Wildling Dreams Consulting. Jackie's credentials also include a 15-year career in business and management, helping grow retail, hospitality and fitness companies before striking out on her own to create luxury wellness products she wasn't finding in the marketplace.

Her story is a narrative of finding herself at age 20, after literally losing her hair from stress and cheap beauty care products. She was at an all-time low in self-confidence because so much of her life was falling apart. Her journey is about finding her way back to health, which has manifested into her becoming a farmer, and formulating the Wildling Botanicals skincare line, Wildling Herbs. Through her businesses, she brings a much-needed perspective to the beauty world by joining nature and business together, so that she can empower others in health and wellness brands to do the same.

We love Jackie's story, and we are honored to welcome her to our Advisory Board!

As we do with all our Advisory Board members, we asked Jackie to share why she wanted to be part of the Nutritional Aesthetics® Alliance:

The Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance:

What excites you the most about The Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance?

Jackie Johnson:

I love mentoring emerging entrepreneurs. I remember the excitement and challenges of formulating and launching my first brand. I wish I had someone to bounce ideas off, or just mastermind ideas with.

Jackie Johnson joins the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance Advisory BoardThe NAA:

How has Nutritional Aesthetics (integrating nutrition and lifestyle changes with skincare and self-care) impacted your practice and/or work?

Jackie Johnson:

I believe our skin is a reflection of our health. Our skin is our largest organ. What we put on our skin does end up in our bodies. I have learned firsthand how harsh chemicals can cause hair loss and skin issues that affect our self-esteem and confidence. Getting back to nature in our skincare, self-care, and everything we do isn’t just safer, but can save us from long-term health issues.

The NAA:

Complete the sentence: “For optimal skin health, I wish people would do more of ___________________, and less of ___________________.”

Jackie Johnson:

For optimal skin health, I wish people would do more of preventive self-care, and less of reactive self-care.

We are so grateful to have Jackie Johnson on our Advisory Board!

Jackie has already presented a wonderful webinar, "Creating A Wholelistic Business," for the Nutritional Aesthetics® Alliance, which is now available along with the other amazing titles in our Webinar Library for NAA members and CNAP students. We look forward to more collaborations with Jackie in the near future!

Connect with Jackie Johnson:


Wildling Dreams Consulting



The Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance Receives Professional Accreditation!

We are so excited to announce that The Nutritional Aesthetics® Alliance has received professional accreditation from the American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP), and is now recognized as a Higher Learning Institute by their Board.

AADP certificate of Professional Accreditation for the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance

In today's virtual world, there are many opportunities to learn online, and there are not many organizations overseeing the quality of education provided outside of traditional colleges and universities.

It can be especially difficult in industries as niche as ours (we literally wrote the textbook on Nutritional Aesthetics®), where each state has different requirements in terms of licensure and hours. While we could have opted for one of the umbrella "distance learning" accreditations, instead, we preferred to seek accreditation from an organization that not only is familiar with the wellness industry, but who has been setting and maintaining high quality standards for many years.

The AADP met those criteria, since they have been overseeing wellness education since 1990--long before the influx of online courses began. They have observed and been part of the transition between traditional learning models and institutions and virtual learning. They have given their stamp of approval to many fine schools such as the Institute for Integrative Nutrition®, Functional Diagnostic Nutrition®, and ASTECC. We are proud to be recognized alongside these institutions.

About the AADP:

The AADP was established in 1990. Its mission is to promote an enhanced professional image and prestige among practitioners of traditional and non-traditional therapies and methodologies. The AADP is recognized by both traditional and non-traditional holistic schools and  colleges worldwide as an independent accrediting board for alternative health  educational institutions and programs.

What does professional accreditation mean?

It is a long and expensive process for schools and colleges to be approved by the U.S. Department of  Education (DOE). Many schools that have received accreditation by the DOE sought professional accreditation first. The AADP has provided professional accreditation status to many schools  that now are recognized by the DOE and Private Post-Secondary Educational agencies.  

accreditedProfessional accreditation can give the school the prestige and acceptance that many prospective students and graduates seek. Accreditation is offered for a two-year period and is renewable upon further evaluation at the end of the accreditation period. In addition, accredited schools are monitored during the period they are accredited, and may forfeit their accreditation if they do not consistently adhere to the guidelines, rules and regulations of the organization.

Professional accreditation is a process that gives public recognition to educational institutions that meet standards of quality set by the AADP. It is a voluntary, non-governmental means of assessing  and certifying institutional quality. In other words, institutions that receive professional accreditation “deliver on what they promise students.”  

Voluntary standards the AADP looks at when awarding professional accreditation to an educational institution:

  • Have clearly defined and well-stated learning objectives. 
  • Offer educationally sound and up-to-date courses. 
  • Provide outstanding educational services to students. 
  • Have demonstrated student success and satisfaction. 
  • Have a competent advisory staff
  • Promotes its courses truthfully. 
  • Have an effective research and self-improvement program.  

Professional accreditation is sometimes called "program accreditation," and is also known as "specialized accreditation." Professional agencies are voluntary associations that are not covered by federal regulations. This type of accreditation is often associated with national professional associations, such as  the American Bar Association which accredits law schools, the American Medical Association which accredits allopathic medical programs and so on. 

Professional accreditation promises students that the institution they elected to study with is a reputable one that will provide a quality education. 

It is not, however, a guarantee that your course work will be accepted by other educational institutions or state agencies, although this frequently can happen.

What professional accreditation means for CNAP students and graduates:

Higher EducationGraduates of our Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner® Training Program will be eligible to apply to be board certified holistic health practitioners by the AADP. Being AADP board certified offers benefits such as free client referrals, a nationally published membership listing, connections with licensed laboratories for non-invasive tests(if that's within your scope of practice), a referral for professional liability insurance, consultations on how to start or increase a practice,  state licensing board assistance where applicable, and more. 

Whether or not you decide to pursue AADP board certification after earning your CNAP, you can be proud and assured that you received quality education from a professionally accredited institution of higher learning.

We are so proud of our program, our students, and our graduates. We have dedicated a substantial amount of time, money, and resources into creating high quality, unique curriculum, with the opportunities to attend classes live. We are honored to have those efforts recognized, with professional accreditation from the AADP.

Start your CNAP journey today!

open enrollment for the CNAP Training ProgramLearn more about our program, download our detailed syllabus, and enroll HERE.

We offer open, rolling enrollment, so you can begin your Nutritional Aesthetics® education today!



How to Help Your Clients Eat More Vegetables

Let's be real. If you were to ask anyone to tell you one thing they know they should do to be healthier, there's a solid chance that their response would be "eat more veggies." In general, most people know that they should eat more vegetables on a daily basis--but they don't. Why is that? The response we've gotten from many of our clients is that they don't think they like vegetables, and they don't know what to do with them to make them taste good. What we have found after years of working with clients of our own, and hearing feedback from our CNAP graduates on what they hear from their clients is that most negative associations with vegetables are because they were either improperly prepared, or under-seasoned. So today, we wanted to provide some simple veggie hacks to help you--and your clients--eat more veggies daily.

How to prepare vegetables for maximum flavor and nutritional value

Most people who express distaste or dislike of vegetables have only had them cooked incorrectly--usually boiled to the point that they have no texture, color, or flavor left. Sometimes they are served alone, in that sad, bland state--or someone might try to rescue them with things like salt, pepper, and butter. Aside from the poor flavor and texture, overcooked mushy veggies also have almost none of their nutrients left intact. In fact, there's probably more nutrients in the water in which they were cooked at that point! There really is no benefit to eating poorly prepared, overcooked veggies.

woman preparing vegetablesInstead, we recommend that people eat more vegetables raw, steamed, or lightly sautéed. Not all veggies are appropriate to eat raw (like root veggies and most cruciferous veggies), but it's a good idea to try to incorporate some raw vegetables into your meals daily.

When you steam or lightly sauté vegetables, only do so until the vegetables brighten in color, and that the texture softens to the point that they are palatable, but still have some bite. This way you not only retain the flavor and texture, but you also retain the nutritional value of the food. 

Give your vegetables variety with different seasonings

It's time to give the tired old salt, pepper, butter seasoning combo a rest. There's a whole world of herbs, spices, condiments, and healthy oils that all give your vegetables a different personality and flavor profile. For example, if you want to give your veggies an Asian twist, try seasoning with low-sodium tamari (a gluten-free fermented soy product like soy sauce), brown miso, umeboshi plum vinegar, dulse flakes (sea vegetable), and sesame oil. For a Mediterranean angle, try adding herbs like basil and parsley into a veggie stir fry with grapeseed oil or olive oil, and a squeeze of fresh lemon. For a Tex/Mex flavor profile, try avocado oil, cilantro and lime. 

These might not be flavors that you grew up eating, so you might have to take a bit of a leap of faith--but you're sure to find a flavor profile that helps you enjoy eating vegetables more. These herbs, spices, oils, condiments are available in health food stores and can be expensive, so we recommend buying a new one each week until you have a nice collection.

Make trying new vegetables fun!

We encourage you to make your vegetable trying experience a little more fun by adding in the element of surprise. One way to do that is to sign up for a weekly fresh, organic mixed produce delivery from a local co-op. You can preview the "menu" every week and make substitutions if you feel you want, but we recommend keeping at least one vegetable that you're less familiar with and use this as an opportunity to experiment.

Vegetable stir fryEach week, find recipes for veggie dishes (appetizers, main courses or sides) with whatever comes in that box,  whether you are familiar with it or not, and whether you think you like it or not. It's like being the star of your own episode of "Chopped" in your very own kitchen! Experiment with delicious warm and cold salads, veggie stir fry dishes, and soups with your weekly mystery ingredients.

When you eat more vegetables, the benefits are immeasurable

Consuming large amounts of fresh, organic vegetables (and fruits too) on a daily basis provides you with many of the essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants your body needs to heal itself, fend off bacterial and viral infections, maintain its optimal weight, and build healthy skin cells from within.

By incorporating more fresh vegetables into your daily diet, you are also increasing hydration, and reducing the amount of acid in your body, which in turn will help reduce the inflammation in your body. This can also help reduce acne breakouts, as well as rosacea, eczema, and psoriasis flare-ups. The nutrients you get from these plant foods are more bioavailable than those you would get from supplements as well, meaning they are more easily absorbed and utilized by the body. If you get the majority of your nutrients from food sources, you spend less money on expensive supplements.

Change it up

Eat more vegetables with herbs and spices for flavorWe all get stuck in food ruts from time to time, where we feel like we are cooking and eating the same types of foods all the time. This happens for many reasons: convenience, comfort level, cooking ability, tradition, etc.; but it is not healthy to keep eating the same things all the time.

Eating should be a fun and even adventurous experience for you and for your clients. They say "variety is the spice of life" for a reason! So find new ways to eat more vegetables!

Do you want to learn more ways to help your clients implement healthy skin lifestyle changes?

Check out our Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner® Training Program! This interactive, virtual 9-month program is designed to teach aestheticians, health coaches, and other skin wellness pros to help their clients achieve optimal skin results with an integrative approach. Helping clients implement healthy changes is a huge focus of what we teach!

Jodie Pappas of Clean Kiss

NAA Member on A Mission: Jodie Pappas

We’re incredibly proud of NAA members and Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner students, and the unique ways that they apply the Nutritional Aesthetics® philosophy in their personal and professional lives. It’s our goal to support them and share their wisdom by highlighting their stories with you in a periodic ‘Member on a Mission’ feature. Our latest featured member is Jodie Pappas, Founder and Skincare Chef of Clean Kiss. 

Jodie hit a turning point in her life twenty-plus years ago when she was struggling with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) that caused infertility and other medical issues affecting her health. She turned to natural health and food to help her clean up her life, overcome PCOS and is eternally grateful for the birth of not one, but three daughters (a singleton and later twins). She is also indebted to another life altering experience that helped her become who she is today when one of her beautiful twins was born with a rare medical condition that required major reconstructive skull surgery and treatment through Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto.

Jodie Pappas of Clean KissThrough these medical struggles, Jodie always sought for a natural solution. Jodie is known as a Family Natural Health Expert and is a published Author of Your Family Health Organizer (2007, Robert Rose Publishing Inc.). She has been a featured guest on City TV's Breakfast Television, Global TV Morning, CTV, CHCH, Rogers TV, and countless radio shows in many cities across Canada and the USA informing parents about becoming advocates and taking charge of their families' health for over a decade.

As a small child, Jodie can recall her father digging and pruning in his garden and it was his passion that inspired Jodie to love nature and to want to grow her own harvest that she could also cook up for her family.  Formulating natural skincare and appreciating the holistic benefits of plant-based nutrition, is just an extension of the beautiful things we can create from mother earth.

Jodie has a BA in Psychology, Certificate in Human Resources Management, Certificate in Organic Skincare Formulation, a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT200), is currently studying Nutritional Aesthetics® towards being a Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner® (CNAP).  

Jodie has leveraged her passion for wellness through clean living and a balanced lifestyle of yoga and fitness, and organic gardening. The creation of her natural skincare product line, Clean Kiss, is an extension of her advocacy for families to take charge of their health by reading labels, teaching that “What you put ON your body, goes IN your body” and encouraging them to find healthy personal care products that REALLY work!

We spoke to Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner student, Jodie Pappas, about the role that Nutritional Aesthetics® plays in her business and her integrative approach to skin health:

Nutritional Aesthetics® Alliance:

What excites you the most about the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance?

Jodie Pappas:

I have been an avid student of nutrition as a means to greater health for as long as I can remember. Actually, when I think about it, it has been twenty years in the making since I first was diagnosed with fertility issues stemming from PCOS. At that time, I made some radical lifestyle changes including switching to a whole foods, plant-based diet and ensuring my body was getting the nutrients in needed at each and every meal. It is this passion that led me to start my own natural skincare brand, Clean Kiss, back in 2014. Making clean formulations that are free from toxins combined with healthy, balanced eating truly is the secret to glowing skin, energy and longevity.

For the last several years, I was looking for more specialized nutritional education to add to my credentials. I explored many programs and nothing ever felt like quite the right fit for what I hoped to do with it. My ultimate goal has been, and continues to be, to marry up the science of nutrition with the art and science of beautiful, handcrafted natural skincare to be able to help other women get the skin they truly desire. I want women to know that non-toxic, topical solutions are only part of the puzzle and that living a healthy lifestyle is the other part of it if they want skin that ages gracefully.

When I discovered the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance's CNAP Training Program, I finally felt it all come together for me! This was the program I was looking for and feel that through the extensive curriculum I will be able to advise my clients how to use nutrition, lifestyle and non-toxic topical skincare solutions to meet their goals.

I enjoy being guided by Rachael because of her vast and expansive experience and knowledge base. The value I get out of the program is incredible.


How do you apply Nutritional Aesthetics® principles to your work?

Jodie Pappas:

I am working on developing a series of workshops for my clients of Clean Kiss that incorporates nutrition, lifestyle choices and non-toxic skincare so that they may bring all of these elements together to achieve their health and skin goals.

I also wish to start offering private one-on-one consultations with women who wish to delve deeper into a customized plan for themselves.

I’ve already starting incorporating more nutritional tips in my marketing to lay the groundwork for my future plans, even though I am only halfway through the CNAP.


Please complete this sentence, and elaborate as much as you wish: “For optimal skin health, I wish people would do more of ___________________, and less of ___________________.”

Jodie Pappas:

For optimal skin health, I wish people would do more of: The four simple principles of health, such as drinking more fresh water and/or herbal teas, wearing sunscreen every day, reading product labels to steer clear of toxic ingredients, and eating the rainbow of colorful foods on their plate at every meal.

I wish people would do less of: Eating refined carbohydrates (the white foods such as sugars, pastas, rice) which prematurely age the skin, staying up too late leading to inadequate rest, stressing less and finding way to manage their stress through yoga and meditation.

We are so grateful to Jodie for being a dedicated CNAP student and Lifetime Member of the Nutritional Aesthetics® Alliance!

Connect with Jodie Pappas:

Join our Mission:

Learn more about NAA Membership HERE, and our Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner® Training Program HERE.

We’d love to feature YOU as an upcoming Member on a Mission!

Leave a comment about aromatherapy in the spa!

We want to hear from you!

How do you apply Nutritional Aesthetics® principles to your own work? Please share in the comments below!

Cozy healthy skin lifestyle practices

5 Healthy Skin Lifestyle Practices to Beat the Winter Blues

For many of us wintertime is a mixed bag--months filled with a jumbled mixture of solemn introspection and exuberant celebration; as well as reflection on the past and resolutions for the future. During this darker, colder time, it's also easy to slip into "winter blues" mode. Whatever the season brings, we want it to be filled with your desired mix of wonderment and nourishment, so today we offer up some of our favorite mindfulness, self-care, and healthy skin lifestyle practices to help you make that happen!

Here are 5 healthy skin lifestyle suggestions to warm up your self-care habits on even the coldest of days:

1. Look for everyday wonders to lift your spirit.

cozy socksDo you have the winter blues? Is the shortage of daylight hours leaving you time-crunched and stressed? You might not be able to conjure more daylight or shift any real work off your plate, but making a conscious effort to appreciate ‘right now’ through the eyes of a child might brighten your mood.

Feed your senses and soak in the details. Slip on some fuzzy socks and wiggle your toes while you enjoy hot ginger tea and listen to the fireplace crackle. Crack open some skin-friendly raw nuts or a juicy pomegranate for a snack and marvel at their intricate design. Place a few drops each of cinnamon, sweet orange and clove essential oils in your diffuser and enjoy the baked cookie smell throughout your home.

2. Savor and simplify to feel true abundance.

Are you overwhelmed with options? We grant you permission to be a bit of a diva about what is on your plate and your vanity! Adopt an ‘If you don’t love it, leave it’ policy in both places. Scan the holiday buffet for foods you truly treasure and skip the everyday dishes that are available all year long. It is not your responsibility to sample everything on the table. Cherry pick a pretty plate and then slowly and mindfully savor every mouthful.

Likewise, resist the urge to retain the half-dozen bottles of lotions that clutter your cabinet and leave your space feeling less than pretty. Try slimming down your product line-up to the ones that truly demon- strate your desired results. Slow down your mirror time and steal some moments for a facial massage that makes you feel pampered. Need a reminder? Post a message or self- care mantra on your mirror for easy reference.

3. Set intentions for the New Year that serve you.

setting resolutions can be part of a healthy skin lifestyleHas your New Year’s resolution list left you feeling inspired and focused—or frustrated and disappointed? The time-honored idea behind creating resolutions is that of hope. If you are settling for less, perhaps it is time for a fresh and personalized approach.

Do you love the resolutions ritual of writing your list each year? Great! Experts agree that those who commit to a formal list strategy are more likely to attain their goals than those who do not. Incorporate these tactics to increase your goal setting effectiveness. Here's what we suggest:

  • Keep it focused. Choose 1-3 items that are realistic yet expansive.
  • Connect each item to your ‘why’—your deeper core values and driving passions.
  • Write it down and be specific.

Prefer to skip the traditional list? No problem, you can create a ritual that is unique to you. Brainstorm different approaches like these to get you started:

  • Make a list of ‘Don’ts’—behaviors and thoughts that no longer serve you. Write each one on a slip of paper and roast them like marshmallow in the fireplace to symbolically release them.
  • Make a list of ‘Done’—a long and glorious list of all the things you have accomplished this year.
  • Letting it all go with dance or even charades is always a fun approach with a
    cleansing, emotion-releasing feel.

4. Practice the gentle art of saying ‘no’ to increase your focus.

Is your mental dialogue drowning in ‘shoulds,’ ‘coulds’ and ‘have-tos?’ Has people-pleasing seriously dampened your creative drive? It can be hard to say no to people because you don’t want to disap- point. But you owe to yourself to create limits.

Avoid taking on too many commitments or spreading yourself too thin so you can focus on your resolutions for the year without undue distraction. Value your time, be clear on your priorities, and say no politely, without apology or sense of obligatory explanation. Judicious use of ‘no’ can you make space for more ‘YES!’ in your life.

5. Take care of your hardworking hands and feet.

When was the last time you gave some of your hardest working skin some love? Cold toes and frigid fingers bring out the winter socks and mittens, but as your hands and feet go under wraps, they often grow increasingly in need of some TLC.

This is the perfect season to build in some simple yet meaningful skin pampering time into your routine. Invest in a divine hand cream and place the bottle next to the sink, the computer, or by your bedside so you can remember to use it often. A trip to the spa for a reflexology foot massage relaxes tense soles. Or schedule a Friday night in, and treat yourself to a foot scrub and soak with a scent that helps any old day feel like a holiday.

With a little thought and purposeful action, healthy skin lifestyle practices like these can transform quiet winter nights into pampering celebrations; and crowded celebrations into nourishing moments. Celebrating and self-care can be one in the same this season, helping you to shine your light all the way through to spring.

Do you want to learn how to support your clients with more healthy skin lifestyle practices like this?

We devote an entire month of curriculum specifically to healthy skin lifestyle practices in our Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner® (CNAP) Training Program. We also train you on how to help your clients implement these changes in their busy lives, so that they can follow your recommendations with greater ease. This makes for faster, and more sustainable results!

CLick HERE to learn more about the CNAP Training Program, and get started today.

NAA File Card Library cards

NAA Membership Update: New Hormone, Microbiome, and Lifestyle Resources Available

NAA Membership is loaded with exciting educational benefits, valuable industry savings, and regular member features like our Member on a Mission blog posts and periodic member co-hosted webinars. Our all time member-favorite benefit though, is the NAA File Card Library--a well of easy-to-digest skin wellness information that can be used for quick reference, or as client handouts. We've just added nine new cards to the Library!

In this pack, we focused on three of our pillars:

  • The Microbiome. This developing body of knowledge examines the influence of digestion and the microbiome on skin health.
  • Hormones & Skin Health. Hormones play a big role in glowing skin, so this is a topic that we love exploring, for women and men alike.
  • Lifestyle Practices. Sleep, exercise, your environment— here we look at the lifestyle influences on skin health.

In The Microbiome, our three new cards are “Key Differences Between the Skin and Gut Microbiome,” “Probiotic Skincare Mythbusting,” and “How pH Affects the Skin's Microbiome.”

In Hormones & Skin Health, our three new cards are “Hormones and Teen Acne” and “Endocrine Health and Hyperpigmentation,” and "Skin Changes During Menopause."

In Lifestyle Practices, our three new cards are “How Too Much Screen Time Damages Your Skin,” “Oil Pulling 101,” and “How to Improve Indoor Air Quality for Better Skin.”

Are you intrigued to learn more about these and get your own access to the NAA File Card Library? We hope so!

Click HERE to check out all of the amazing benefits NAA Membership has to offer, and join our movement today!

But wait, there's more--did you know that when you enroll in our Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner® (CNAP) Training Program, you get LIFETIME NAA Membership included? You do!

Click HERE to learn more about the program and get instant access to the program and all the benefits of NAA Membership today!

Leave a comment about aromatherapy in the spa!Are you already a CNAP Student or NAA Member?

Be sure to login to grab this latest card pack. But before you go, please tell us:

What’s your favorite NAA File Card?

What do you love most about NAA Membership?

Please share in the comments below!

woman outside in winter

Nourish and Nurture Your Skin for the Upcoming Cold Weather

As the cold weather sets in, the time has come to swap our summer skincare to meet the skincare challenges brought on by winter. By changing up our skincare regimen now, our skin can stay healthy and happy through the winter; ready to shine when another spring season rolls around.

Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do to ensure your skin stays hydrated, protected, and does not suffer too much from the harsh pang of winter.

Cold weather skincare ingredients to look for

As winter skincare demands more nourishment, the lightweight gels and creams we turn to during the summer can no longer cut it--indoor, heated air will cause them to evaporate faster than they can provide benefit, and they don't provide enough emollient protection for the cold weather. Instead, try to get your hands on natural skincare products that contain some of the following emollient ingredients:

  • Argan oil is great for those with dry skin, as it has healing and anti-aging benefits alongside the hydrating power. If you have oily skin, make sure you test a product before adding it to your routine, as oils can cause breakouts.
  • Avocado oil has soothing and regenerative properties, and our skin absorbs it easily.
  • Jojoba oil is similar to our own sebum, and it has some amazing antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also hypoallergenic and contains the vitamins A, E, and D. Jojoba is a fantastic choice for mature skin.
  • Shea butter can be used for rashes and eczema, and it’s really effective for adding some extra moisture to your skin during the winter months. It’s great for moisturizing your body as well.

Before you start using any product on a more regular basis, make sure you test it and track how your skin reacts. Introduce products gradually, and only one at a time.

Try a Homemade Facial

honeyAs you need to deliver more soothing and moisturizing ingredients to your skin, sometimes the best thing you can do is mix a mask yourself--or teach your clients how to do this at home. Here are some you can try:

  • Heavy cream and honey will leave your skin supple and soft. Mix a tablespoon of honey with heavy cream and apply to your face. Leave on for 15 minutes and rinse.
  • Banana and milk make an excellent combination for dry and patchy skin. Mash a banana in a bowl and add a tablespoon of milk. Apply, leave on for 20 minutes, then rinse.
  • Carrot and honey are good for dull and patchy skin. The beta-carotene will help lighten the spots, while honey is great as an anti-inflammatory agent. Peel and puree a carrot and add a tablespoon of honey. Apply and leave on for 15 minutes, then rinse with warm water.

Consider the products you use

Now is the time to revamp your skincare shelf (or shelves?).

First, take a look at what you are already using and how many steps your morning and evening routines have. Is there a step you might be looking to add now?

For example, if you don’t normally use an eye cream, autumn is a great time to introduce one, as the sensitive skin around your eyes needs all the help it can get to stay hydrated and protected.

Think about your toner, the face masks you usually use, as well as your exfoliator and cleanser. Try to switch to ones that are more nourishing, less drying, and that will not strip your skin as much.

You should also take this opportunity to check expiration dates and consider how long an item has been open – and throw away anything suspect.

Drink more water

girl drinking waterWe usually feel more thirst during the summer, as our bodies lose water while sweating in the heat. However, we actually tend to get more dehydrated in the wintertime because we also tend to drink less water.

As you already know, H2O is what keeps your skin looking plump and feeling smooth and soft to the touch. Though it's not enough to rely solely on drinking water to achieve hydrated skin on the surface, skin cells cannot form and function properly before they rise to the surface without adequate water. No amount of hydrating skincare will be able to help if you don’t hydrate your entire body enough and nourish your skin from the inside.

Get a reusable water bottle to carry around with you and sip throughout the day. You might even want to use an app to remind you that you need to keep hydrating.

Consider heat and humidity levels

If you like to turn up the heat in your home when it gets cold, and if you tend to take very warm or hot showers, you might be doing more damage to your skin than you know. The heat dries your skin out, causing it to crack and peel. Even if it doesn’t get to a visible point, too much heat will make itself felt deep down.

Try turning down the heat. Start with the shower, and keep it pleasantly warm. Turn your home’s heating down as well – especially during the night, when you will also be sweating under your duvet if you make the room too hot.

On top of that, you can invest in a humidifier to keep the moisture in your space at optimal levels, ensuring your skin stays hydrated.

Final thoughts

Cold weather skincare doesn’t have to be difficult, expensive, or complex. You just need to start by understanding your skin’s needs, and listening to the signs it's giving. If it's dry, give it more oil and water. If it's irritated, then maybe it's time to simplify your regimen. Provide it with enough moisture and nourishment, and it will thank you every day.

Fall Skin Guide on an iPadWant more integrative cold weather skincare tips?

Sign up for our free Integrative Guide to Healthy Skin HERE!

About the author:

Guest author, Sarah Kaminski, is a life enjoyer, positivity seeker, and a curiosity enthusiast. She is passionate about an eco-friendly lifestyle and adores her cats. She is an avid reader who loves to travel when time allows. Connect with Sarah on Twitter at @SarahKaminski10.



detox foods

7 Detox Foods You Probably Already Have in Your Kitchen

People are sometimes anxious about the idea of detoxing, or "going on a cleanse," due to the the perception that it requires lots of effort, planning, and nothing less than a total lifestyle and diet overhaul. This can sometimes be the case, but it certainly doesn’t have to always be. You can help your body get rid of toxins naturally on a daily basis by simply adding more detox foods to your regular diet. The great news is that you probably already have these in your kitchen; and if not, they are easy to find in any grocery store.

Here are 7 of our favorite, easy-to-find detox foods:

1. Lemons

Lemons are the backbone of many "detox diets." Rich in beneficial antioxidants and minerals including vitamin C, vitamin B, riboflavin, calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium, they help cleanse the body of toxins, boost the immune system and stimulate the liver.

When added to water, lemon juice can ease digestive issues such as heartburn, bloating, constipation, and nausea. Lemons also naturally help support healthy blood sugar levels, and promote regular elimination.

You don’t need to go for a full-on Master Cleanse-style fast with lemon juice to get the benefits. Simply try starting the day with a glass of lemon water, and drink some hot lemon and honey before bed.

2. Green veggies

green vegetables and sproutsMost of us don’t need to be reminded to include green vegetables in our diets. We know we should be eating them. But for some reason, these delicious and vital foods don’t appear on our plates as much as they should. From a detox perspective, green vegetables like broccoli, spinach, kale, watercress, and sprouts are helpful because they contain nutrients that produce sulphorophanes, which speed along the detox process and boost our immune systems. Click here for suggestions on how to prepare green detox foods for optimal flavor.

3. Brown rice

Full of iodine, potassium and fiber, brown rice is a great detox food to support colon cleansing. For optimum benefit, choose an organic variety. Soak the rice for at least half an hour to soften the bran layer, and then cook it thoroughly to make it easier to digest.

Most brown rice varieties use a 2.5:1 water to rice ratio, but check your package for the exact ratio. To cook brown rice, boil the water, add a dash of Himalayan salt and/or a dash of peanut or coconut oil. Add the rice and return to a boil, then turn the heat all the way down and cover the pot. Your delicious brown rice should be perfectly cooked in 30 to 40 minutes. Just enough time for you to prep the rest of your meal.

4. Beets

beetsBeets get their bright color from betacyanin, which not only acts as a pigment, but also helps detox the liver, which speeds up the elimination of toxins. They also contain the mood-boosting chemicals betaine (used to treat depression), and trytophan; as well as iron and vitamin C. For optimal nutrient density, add raw grated beets to a salad or sandwich, or blend them raw before adding to a soup.

5. White tea

Everyone knows about the benefits of green tea, but white tea is now gaining in popularity as a detox food too. The least processed tea variety, white tea is made by harvesting the leaves while young and at their most potent, then drying them naturally to preserve all the goodness. This gives it a particularly high density of antioxidants; and like green tea, it boosts the effects of enzymes used in detoxing the body.

6. Garlic

Garlic is another detox food with numerous health benefits. It protects the liver and heart from damage, boosts the immune system, and preserves our levels of the powerful antioxidant glutathione. It can also boost the effects of detoxing enzymes such as quinine reductase and glutathione transferase.

Studies have shown that more of garlic’s beneficial properties are released if cloves are crushed, and then left for at least five minutes before cooking or adding to other ingredients. You also don’t want to overcook it, so we recommend adding it to the end of your sauté, rather than at the beginning.

7. Artichokes

artichokesThe key to artichokes’ detox powers is a high content of cynarin--the chemical that gives them their sweetness. Cynarin stimulates the liver and gall bladder, promoting the absorption of nutrients and speeding along the excretion of toxins. Some studies also suggest cynarin can be effective in lowering "bad" cholesterol and triglycerides, and supporting healthy blood pressure. To get the full benefit, prepare the artichoke by steaming or grilling. 

Detox foods don't have to be exotic or expensive to be effective.

We hope this article inspires you that even simple, common foods--when prepared properly and consumed regularly--can help your body detoxify itself on a regular basis.

Do you want to learn more simple strategies to help your clients live skin-healthy lives?

Check out our Certified Nutritional Aesthetics Practitioner® Training Program. This in depth program teaches aestheticians, nutritionists, health coaches, and other skin wellness practitioners how to support their clients towards reaching their skin goals through our integrative approach to healthy skin. The course is self-paced, so you can get started today!