Be Fair

During Fairimage004 - Copy Trade Fortnight ( 30March – 12 April 2015)  South Africans can choose from a selection of FairTrade products that aim to seek justice wimage002 - Copyith a chocolate bar, right wrongs with a glass of wine and change the world on their coffee break. The campaign’s theme, THE POWER OF YOU, aims to inspire the new generation of leaders and decision-makers to activate the immense power they have as consumers by choosing the products that are making a stand for social justice and offering alternatives to the exploitation of small scale farmers and the land.

By choosing Fairtrade wine you have the power to increase the opportunities for farm workers and their kids in the Cape Winelands. By choosing a bar of Fairtrade chocolate you have the power to fight child labour in cocoa farms in West Africa. By choosing Fairtrade coffee or tea, you have the power to incentivise small-scale farmers in Africa in improving the quality of their coffee and in using the land sustainably.

Visit the Fairtrade stand at the Taste of Cape Town between 10-12 April where you can taste a wide variety of the products that make a difference. For a list of Fairtrade products available in South Africa visit www.fairtrade.org.zaimage005 - Copy

Reincarnating Yourself Into a Tree

Human kind has always had interesting ways of dealing with death, and in particular, dead bodies. From sending our beloved off to sea in a burning boat, to entombing them forever in towering pyramids, it seems we’ve tried it all when it comes to commemorating lives and remembering our past friends and family.

These days, burial seems to be the preferred method of providing a home for our lifeless bodies. However, in a world where access to land is ever shrinking, the process can be expensive and, in some senses, wasteful.

Cremation is becoming an increasingly popular alternative for a number of reasons, from cost and practicality, to the desire to be able to to have one’s remains for memory’s sake.

Now, a product called Bios Urn, allows for you, after cremation, to be buried in a bio degradable urn that contains the seed of a tree which will one day grow into a towering tree, using your ashes for nutrients in years to come.

Bios Urns essentially complete the cycle of life, from death to life, by giving a tree the opportunity to grow strong and tall from your remains. You can even select the species of tree you wish to give life to.

Imagine a cemetery evolving from a forest of stones, crosses and angels, to a forest of living breathing trees supporting the natural environment, growing from the remains of once living creatures.

It’s an odd concept, but quite beautiful none the less.

Greenpop’s New Online Pop up Shop- A Great Place For Gift Shopping

It’s the holiday season yet again- The time of the year where we can show our gratitude for our friends, families and loved ones. Christmas shopping, however, can be a stressful experience for many people, and busy shopping centers crowded with cliche gift options are not everyone’s ideas of a good way to spend our precious holiday hours.

To this end, Greenpop, a Cape Town based social enterprise aimed at greening and sustainable living,has just launched an online POP UP shop: www.greenpopupshop.com equipped with loads of suitable, fun and thoughtful gifts for this festive season.

The shop features green gifts such as Greenpop hemp caps and snoods, awesome water bottles that have info graphics on water and the text ‘this is tap water,’ and Christmas cards that are printed on ‘growing paper’ with embedded seeds, so that they can be planted.

The shop also features ‘tree rings,’ wire key rings that represent a tree that we’ll plant on someone’s behalf. Each tree ring comes with a unique code, which allows people to go to our website and get their personal certificate with the GPS coordinates of their tree.

If you’d like to gift trees this Festive Season without the Tree Ring (just with a Tree Certificate), you can learn more here: Festive Tree Certificates

About Greenpop:

Greenpop is a social enterprise that believes greening and sustainable living can be fun, POPular and accessible for all. We believe in inspiring a greener, more conscious, inclusive movement and do this through tree planting projects, green action events, education, social media, voluntourism and activating people to start DOING!

Greenpop started in September 2010 and has since planted almost 30 000 trees in over 250 beneficiary schools, crèches, old-age homes, community centres as well as deforested areas in Southern Africa. Creative tree-care programmes have been implemented and children, community members and volunteers are getting their hands dirty, learning a lot and loving it. Greenpop is inspired by the exciting projects we have coming up and the bright green future we see for Africa.

The Benefits of Buchu: win some Cape Moondance 100% Buchu Tea

Buchu, has a distinctive sweet, lemony fragrance and is unique to South Africa. The botanical has been part of the indigenous culture and heritage for centuries. Its earliest documented use was in 1652, when the Cape’s resident Khoisan pastoralists introduced the first Dutch colonists to the healing herb. Then it was an extremely scarce and expensive commodity– a mere thimbleful could be exchanged for a sheep. Now you can enjoy it in a 100% pure, organic tea bag.

Buchu is a natural diuretic and is a valuable source of vitamins A, B, C, and E, as well as numerous minerals, antioxidants and disease-preventing flavanoids.

WIN!
Four lucky readers can each win one packet of Cape Moondance 100% Buchu tea and a packet of Buchu with a hint of Mint.
To enter send an email to melissa@lifeinbalance.co.za with the email header ‘Cape Moondance Buchu Tea’. Winner is chosen via a lucky draw and there is only one entry per reader accepted. Entries close on the 25th September 2013.

Available at Shoprite, Pick ‘n Pay, Spar, Dischem and Wellness Warehouse outlets nationwide, at a recommended retail price of R35.99.

Learn more at the Cape Moondance Buchu website

Image: Cape Moondance

Orgasmic Organic

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Want to go green in the bedroom?

Yes® is the world’s first and only certified organic lubricant which will appeal to anyone who is sexually active and wishes to enhance their sexual health. This silky gel is made from plant-based skin foods that moisturises and lubricates and is certified organic by the Soil Association, an internationally recognised certification body in the UK.

Yes® contains 96% naturally grown ingredients like aloe vera, guar gum, locust bean bum, flax extract and water, all of which moisturise and nourish skin. It does not contain any hazardous compounds, pesticides, chemicals or hormones. In other words: Yes® is pure, fresh and natural.

The range includes a water-based natural lubricant (also available in pack of six applicators), a baby fertility-friendly natural lubricant and natural lubricant combo and value packs.

Discover the full Yes® range of natural and organic intimate products in a selection of sizes and variants to meet your unique needs.

Available at selected Alpha Pharm, MediRite and Link pharmacies nationwide or from the online shopping portal http://www.lisan.co.za. Prices start at R79 inclusive of VAT.

For more information visit http://www.yeslubricants.co.za

Africa Extracts Rooibos Herbal Shampoo and Conditioner giveaway

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The African Extracts Rooibos range of skin and body care products is a South African success story, and now there is great shampoo and conditioner to add to their selection.

African Extracts Herbal Shampoo is made from a patented Rooibos extract and is enriched with tea tree and wheat germ oil.

Rooibos is a well known endemic plant to South Africa renowned for its anti-oxidant properties, while tea tree oil has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties which help to keep your hair and scalp healthy.Wheat germ oil is an excellent emollient, relieving dryness and adding softness to the hair. The shampoo gently cleanses without stripping the hair of natural oils and is ideal for every-day use.

The herbal conditioner has a combination of natural extracts (including Rooibos) that protect your hair against environmental stress and pollutants. Seaweed extracts provide a wide variety of vitamins, minerals and amino acids to strengthen hair and improve strength and elasticity. Grapeseed oil is included for its ability to absorb quickly and moisturise without adding weight to the hair.

Three lucky readers can each win a shampoo and conditioner. Please send an email to melissa@lifeinbalance.co.za with the email title African Extracts to be included in the lucky draw. Please note only one entry per email address and that winners are chosen via a random lucky draw. Your details are not shared for any other purpose other than to facilitate the winner’s receiving their gifts. Entries close on the 27th December 2013.

Available from Dis-Chem and pharmacies countrywide.

Visit http://www.africanextracts.com

Organic Wear 100% Natural Origin Mascara

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Ask most women and they will agree that the most important product in their make up kit is mascara. A quick sweep and we look and feel better – every time!

Now, those who love pampering their lashes as well as the earth can do so with confidence with Organic 100% Natural Origin formula. It contains the purest ingredients, is free of harsh chemicals and other nasty stuff and the Eco-Brush is 100% recyclable when the wand runs dray.

Even better news? No clumping, smudging, flaking and fibers! It’s also hypoallergenic and safe for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers.

A make-up must have, in our opinion.

Available at selected Dis-Chem stores nationwide for R145.00

Healthy skin with EcoProducts Baobab Oil

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Tissue Oil is well known for its remarkable benefits. It alleviates itchiness and dryness associated with skin ailments like eczema, dry psoriasis, acne, sun burn and more. It is an excellent moisturiser, helps with scarring and stretch marks, and is often used to treat and prevent acne. One of our favourites is EcoProducts’ Baobab Oil.

It absorbs quickly into the skin without clogging pores, and really does leave your skin feeling soft and silky. Baobal Oil also contains Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids which helps keep skin healthy.

Apply the oil directly to affected areas, or simply add drops to your bath water, your regular body lotion, face cream or hair conditioner. And if you apply it to wet skin after your bath or shower, it will spread easily across your skin.

This non toxic oil is safe even for children and pregnant women, although it is recommended that very light-skinned people not use it on their eyelids.

We love that it is cold pressed, filtered, then bottled – no additives! We love that is is a local product.

Find it at online stockists or from selected health stores and pharmacies.

For more information visit the EcoProducts website.

WIN
Three lucky readers can each win one bottle of Baobab Oil. I have been using it on my skin and it is just lovely, healing and soothing.

Please send an email to melissa@lifeinbalance.co.za. Emails must have the title header – Baobab Oil.

Closing date for entries is the 27th April 2014. The lucky readers are chosen via random number selection. Please only send one email per entry.

Waste not, want not

By Jess Handley

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It isn’t the most glamorous topic and is as enthusiastically dealt with as load shedding or laundry day; yet arguably it is as important an issue as poaching or a severe drought. Food waste, rubbish, trash, garbage – whatever word you choose to describe what you throw away – although where exactly this “away” is – no-one knows as where it ends up – in landfills, is exactly what is causing the problem.

Landfills are being filled to capacity as the amount of waste produced by humans increases at a staggering rate. This has serious implications for municipalities struggling to cope with waste management and for communities who have no waste collection services. The problem however has brought with it an enormous opportunity and, luckily, there are already pioneers who are championing solutions to this issue. Gavin and Karen Heron, owners of Earth Probiotic offer smart, cost effective solutions that turn food waste into composting treasure.

The primary product used by Earth Probiotic

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is bokashi, a wheat-bran inoculated with a mix of probiotic bacteria, yeast and fungi. Developed in the 1980s in Japan bokashi is now globally used for the management of food waste. The trick behind this clever little mixture is that it helps break down food waste through a process of fermentation, which means the food does not rot and therefore no CO2 is produced. During this process, “bokashi juice” also forms which is loaded with microbes and nutrients, making it a great natural fertilizer. This juice can also be poured down drains to keep them odour free and it is very useful in preventing sludge from building up and blocking drainage in septic tank systems.

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There are many efforts to help reduce paper, metal and plastic waste through recycling and Earth Probiotic’s bokashi system is helping diminish the large amount of food waste that continues to rise each year. Even if one is not the most avid of gardeners who need fertilizer or you have a septic tank in the home, reducing what you ‘throw away’ is a good enough reason to turn your food waste into something better than smelly landfill.

For more information about Earth Probiotic, please visit: http://www.earthprobiotic.co.za/
To purchase a bokashi starter kit, please visit: http://www.bokashishop.co.za/

MAWUWATER Aquasac Giveaway

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This is definitely the coolest way to carry water – ever.

Created by environmental entrepreneur Carin Dean-Wales, the MAWUWATER aquasac can be used to carry the water of your choice (tap or filtered or any drink for that matter). Even more convenient, it can be used with a bottle filter (Brita or similar that is attachable to the aquasac nozzle).

The aquasac consists of 3 components: the hygienic BPA-free inner bladder, the nozzle spout and the outer sleeve with handy strap.

The outer sleeve comes in an near unlimited number of options, from recycled denim, canvas, neoprene and jute to crocheted, embroidered, leather and shweshwe cloth. Better still, customize your outer sleeve yourself with beads, buttons, tassels, rivets; you are limited only by your imagination.

Some versions even come with a practical pocket on the outer sleeve for keys, phones and anything else you need to carry along with you (or these can be zipped into the main compartment).

Three lucky readers can each win one of these must have fashion accessories. Email melissa@lifeinbalance.co.za by 27 February Mawu Aquasac give-away in the subject line.

The MAWUWATER aquasacs are available nationwide and retail from R200.

For more info visit the website at http://www.mawuwater.co.za