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Feed your Hair | Eat this for strong healthy hair

Hair is the fastest growing tissue the body produces so it deserves all your best efforts to encourage strong regeneration. Many people focus on what they put on their hair to solve challenges. They miss the most important step and that is to start from the beginning. For healthy hair, you start with the root, deep in the dermis of the scalp. The only way, or I should say, the best way to get to the root is to be intentional with the food you eat.

The best way to support strong healthy vibrant hair is with what you nourish your body with. These whole foods are packed with nutrients that have been known to be particularly beneficial for vibrant strong hair. Your body will extract the nutrients it desperately needs as long as you are supplying the raw material in whole plant foods.

Iron – If you really want to get to the root, you can’t beet getting to the very blood that supplies oxygen to the root of the hair follicle. Iron improves circulation thereby improving oxygen delivery to encourage hair growth.

  • Spinach
  • Legumes – beans, lentils, chickpeas, peas, and soybeans
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Quinoa
  • Broccoli
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Apricot
  • White Mushroom
  • Leeks
  • Acorn Squash
  • Cashew

Omega 3 – An anti-inflammatory that promotes healthy shine and opens hair follicles to encourages hair growth.

  • Flax seed
  • Chia Seeds
  • Hemp Seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Soybeans
  • Seaweed, nori, spirulina, chlorella, and other algae
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Kale
  • Purslane

Vitamin A – Vitamin A is the growth vitamin. It also helps the sebaceous glands create sebum to moisturizer the scalp and the hair follicle.

  • Orange and yellow vegetables and fruits
  • Sweet Potato
  • Carrots
  • Black Eyed Peas
  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Mango
  • Red Bell Pepper
  • Cantaloupe
  • Apricots
  • Pumpkin
  • Butternut Squash
  • Pink Grapefruit

Vitamin B – For B-12, you need to take a supplement pill. Also known as biotin, vitamin B is best known for hair growth.

  • Leafy greens like Spinach, Collard greens, Turnip greens, Romaine lettuce
  • Legumes like Black beans, Chickpeas, Green Peas, Kidney beans, Lentils, Pinto beans
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Oranges
  • Whole Grains
  • Sweet Potato
  • Banana
  • Lentils
  • Carrot
  • Almond
  • Avocado

Vitamin C – The powerhouse antioxidant that is crucial for regeneration and to protect against free radicals. It is a keystone in your body’s ability to create collagen. It also helps the body to absorb Iron, a necessary mineral for hair growth.

  • Spinach, Kale, Mustard Greens,
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Pumpkin
  • Guava
  • Citrus fruits
  • Strawberry
  • Guava
  • Sweet and White Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Bell Peppers
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Rose hips
  • Kiwis

Vitamin E – Repair and restore scalp as well as strong antioxidant that helps you maintain sturdy hair growth.

  • Sunflower Seeds
  • Almonds
  • Avocados
  • Spinach
  • Butternut Squash
  • Kiwifruit
  • Broccoli
  • Swiss Chard
  • Beet Greens
  • Olive
  • Wheat germ
  • Pine nuts
  • Mango
  • Turnip greens

Zinc – Supports hair growth and repair. It also helps keep the sebaceous glands functioning at peak performance.

  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Legumes – beans, lentils, chickpeas, peas, and soybeans
  • Hemp Seeds
  • Squash
  • Sesame seeds
  • Pine nuts
  • Peanuts
  • Cashews
  • Almonds
  • Whole grains – wheat, quinoa, rice, and oats
  • Dark Chocolate
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How soap works

What is soap?

Tres Spa Organic Soap - Harmony

As defined by the FDA, the governing agency in the US, true soap is the alkali salt of fatty acids. That’s it. End of definition.

It really is pretty straightforward and anything else is not considered to be soap at all, it would be a detergent. This is the case for soaps and shampoo. Most body and hair cleansers out there are fortified with synthetic chemicals to enhance lather and alter the cleaning process so much to the point they are no longer a true soap at all. They would be treated Very few soaps are true soaps. In fact, beyond handcrafters like Très Spa, I’m not sure if there is any large scale manufacturer of true soap.

How is it made?

Traditional soap is made by combining fatty acids (oil) from either plant, animal, or mineral with an alkali (lye) of either potassium hydroxide or sodium hydroxide. At Très Spa we only use certified organic plant oils and, since we do not make liquid soap, sodium hydroxide to formulate all of our soap and shampoo.

Once the acid and the alkali are combined they begin to react and combine eventually creating a solid block. The chemical reaction of the two is called saponification. The result is a alkali salt or what we all call soap.

How does it work?

There’s a lot more going on than just pretty bubbles when you activate your soap!

Soap is a a perfectly balanced yin and yang of hydrophilic and hydrophobic molecules. One loves water and the other is repelled by it. This nature is what allows the soap to act as an emulsifier allowing liquids to diffuse together.

So lets say you rubbed a bar of soap against your skin or a bar of shampoo across your scalp and hair when water is present. You need the water in order to get the soap to jump into action and line up accordingly. One end points away from the water and grabs hold of anything but water. So dirt, oil, and any other surface debris gets surrounded on all sides by the soap. Eventually the water comes by and the hydrophilic ends of the soap catch the wave pulling the debris and surface oil away from the surface and down the drain.

No matter what the application is, soap works the same every time.

What happens to your skin after soap

Your skin’s top mantle is slightly acidic, balancing between 4+ to 6+ on the pH scale . Soap is slightly alkali dancing between 8 to 10. There is no way to know for sure exactly what the pH is of your handcrafted soap since it continues to change as it ages, but they usually fall in a range that is ideal for cleansing the top mantle of the skins protective layer.

Once the soap passes over the skin, the mantles pH is temporarily adjusted. Don’t panic, it will turn back to normal in a short time. In fact, you may not even notice since . If your pH is high you may feel a bit dry. Très Spa Organic Soaps are super-fatted at 5% so that when you use them, your skin feels soft and supple. Less disruptive to the natural balance of the skins mantle.

What happens to your face after soap

The skin on your face operates just like the rest of your body. Likewise, it responds the same to soap, a momentary shift in pH then a re-balancing. Your goal is to keep the pores unclogged and clean while not damaging the balance.

Très Spa Organic Face Cleanser is formulated with exfoliates to help clear out debris, dead skin cells, and unclog pores. They also include more super-fatting than our bar soaps so this will leave a more moisturized feeling. Limiting your face washing to once a day, before bed, should be all you need to maintain a fresh healthy face.

What happens to your hair after soap

Digital StillCamera

When it comes to washing your hair, there are two areas to look at. One is the scalp, which is very similar to the rest of your skin when you wash with soap. The lather carries away the dirt, debris, and excess oil. The other area is the hair shaft. The lather wraps around the hair cuticle then carries away the dirt, debris, and excess oil. While the skin on the scalp reacts much the same as everywhere on your body, the hair follicles also respond to soap. The act of washing the hair temporarily adjusts the porosity of the cuticle by making it softer and more receptive to absorbing nutrients and moisture. Très Spa Organic Shampoo’s are specifically formulated with plants that are beneficial in supporting strong healthy hair.

To keep the hair system healthy and stable, we recommend adopting a specific routine to suit your specific needs.

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Solid Shampoo The Zero Waste Solution

Très Spa Organic Conditioning Shampoo Rosemary Tea Tree & a kiss of Mint Bar

Solid shampoos are nothing new although not known to be as old as the original soap made by ancient Babylonians in 2800 B.C.. Soap shampoo has been around for over 100 years. In the early days of shampoo soap, stylists would boil shaved bar soap and use this to cleanse their customers hair. They could add other botanical ingredients making it aromatic as well as practical. The next step would be to bottle that and sell it! It didn’t take long for someone to figure out how to do just that.

Shampoo as we know it now, detergent in liquid form coming out of a plastic bottle, is fairly new on the scene (only 70 years old). The first liquid shampoo is credited to a German scientist in 1927. The first commercial shampoo wasn’t introduced until the 1930’s and it really took off into what we know today in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Somewhere along the way, we picked up conditioners along with the shampoos because of the fact the chemicals used in the shampoos were causing damage to the cuticle and the hair fibers. Of course, we were told it was to give us silky manageable hair. For the manufacturer, their one bottle customer just became a two bottle customer and bottles started flying off the shelf. Bottled shampoo is a major market segment with staggering revenue and only one piece of the hair care market segment.

So in a short 60 -70 years we went from zero to $87.9 billion, yes Billion, dollar hair care industry filled with waste and excess that is not even needed. The global shampoo market alone is with $25.7 billion dollars. So you can see how there is a good deal of interest for big business to keep you bottle fed.

The problem with the bottle

The average person goes through 10 shampoo bottles a year and 11 shower gel bottles. As one individual you may be saying that 21 bottles is not that much of a difference. But here is where you need to understand the compounded impact. 21 bottles over a 10 year period becomes 210 bottles. That’s just one person. Très Spa has been around longer than 10 years and we have a consumer base larger than one person so can you imagine how many plastic bottles we have diverted? What about the impact if it’s a family of 4? Multiply the savings from one person by, let’s say 10% of the planet population and what do you get. If the planet is currently 7.79 plus billion people that would be 779,000,000 plus 1 (you). That’s a huge number of people!

So let’s just talk about the USA, where we are and where Très Spa is created (act local and think global). Let’s imagine we were able to get just 10% of the population to make a difference and switch over to solid shampoo and soap for their shower. The current US population is 328 million people so 10% of that population is 32,800,000 for a total of 6,888,000,000 bottles per year. That’s the difference if only 10% of the USA population dropped the bottle and picked up a bar or two for a year! If they made it a lifestyle choice over 10 years that would be a savings of 68,880,000,000 plastic bottles diverted from choking the planet and devastating natural habitats. I can’t even imagine what that many bottles would look like.

Sure there are recycle and reclaiming programs that work to a certain percent but a good deal still ends up in land fills. So why create the need when you don’t have to? Seems silly when there is a better way, don’t you think we should take advantage of the savings where they are easiest? Save the bottles for when you have to use them. You don’t have to when it comes to shampoo or hand and body soap. There is a better way.

Sustainable Packaging

You can never fully escape the need for at least some amount of packaging. But the fact the bars are solid, you have more planet friendly options available. You will find that most of the companies who create solid shampoos, also work hard to make sure their shampoo packaging is sustainable. For Très Spa, we’ve tried a few options. One For a time we opted for custom printed boxes but the cost verses the value to our customers just didn’t support it. Eventually we took a simple approach. We wrap our bars in 100% post consumer recycled paper and the labels are printed on 100% post consumer paper as well. The only way to improve on that is to hand you an un-wrapped bar. We tried that for a bit but, oddly enough, it created to much waste via damaged product. So far the tissue seems to be the best solution for our Green Warriors.

More reasons to make the change

It’s cheaper! Solid shampoos have a far higher use rate over a bottle. For example, just one of the Très Spa Organic Shampoo’s last our average customer 8 to 9 weeks compared to the 5 week average of a traditional bottle of detergent shampoo. And, since our shampoo’s have no harsh chemicals, there is no need to use excessive amounts of conditioning agents to repair damage from the harsh chemicals found in traditional liquid shampoo.

Solid shampoo’s are the best travel companion. They are compact and take up very little space. Since it is a solid product, you don’t experience the same limitations you would have with a liquid. You can travel across any border on the planet with your Très Spa Organic Shampoo and no one will confiscate it. Having your shampoo travel with you also means you wont be dependent on the mini bottles of liquids found in hotel rooms. You can use your shampoo to clean your whole body, not just your hair. *I have even used it to clean clothes in a pinch. They will lift out dirt but they are superfatted so they aren’t the best for laundry purposes. Still, it works in a pinch and it wont harm streams or rivers or natural habitats.

One of the other significant planet saving features of some solid shampoo’s is what goes into them. We’ve all heard the turn of phrase “what you put in, you get out.” The same is true with consumer products. The ingredients that go into a product can have a huge impact on the planet from the raw materials to the run off after consumer use. For Très Spa, our commitment to sustainability is etched into the keystone of our company. The reason we formulate with ingredients from nature is so they can be harvested and processed for formulations and go full circle returning to nature without causing harm. Up stream and downstream, we pay attention to the impact our product may have. Sustainability is a full cycle loop.

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The best way to condition your hair

Tres Spa Natural Hair Care

The first step is to think beyond you hair and look at the entire hair system. Conditioning starts with the food you eat, getting plenty of fresh water, and a proper amount of rest. Conditioning includes the root supply, the sebaceous glands, the scalp, the porosity of the cuticle, and the texture of the hair. You should find the method and interval that works for your specifics when creating your hair routine.

When it comes to conditioning you have many options available to you. There are several types of conditioners each having their own Rinse-Out, Leave-In, and Deep conditioners. For Très Spa, our philosophy is to keep things simple and in harmony with nature. Our conditioning starts with the organic shampoo, long before conventional conditioners would start, and carries over to our leave in products.

Rinse-Out Conditioning

Rinse-Out conditioners include lotions and creams that are typically used immediately following shampooing. Suitable for any hair type or scalp condition. It’s applied root to tip and massaged in then once it has rested a minute or tow it gets rinsed out. They are made of oils emulsified with water and other ingredients. They are used to undo any damage done by the shampoo. They claim to protect the hair by coating the hair in a protective film layer. If you don’t rinse thoroughly they can build up and leave the hair feeling heavy and even greasy. So with all the rinsing off, how much really stays behind to continue conditioning.

Leave-In Conditioning

Leave-In conditioners are lighter and stay in the hair after shampooing, drying, and styling. These are suitable for any hair type and any scalp condition. Leave-In conditioners can be oil based, water based, or an emulsification of oils with water base. They can be used in place of the rinse-out conditioner or along with. This is the category that the Très Spa treatments fall under. Leave-In conditioners are great for pre-styling as they act as a barrier to protect against heat damage. Since they are left in the hair they can help to protect the hair from environmental damage. They also help fight the frizz and can enhance the shine of healthy hair.

Deep Conditioning

Deep conditioners are much thicker and denser than the more common conditioners. They are used less frequently and typically only for extremely dry or damaged hair and scalp. Although anyone could benefit from a deep conditioning as they can be nutrient rich. Hair masks are a thick liquid that is applied to the hair and/or scalp and then allowed to rest. They are often activated with the use of external heat. For at home DIY hair masks, the hair and scalp may be wrapped in order to promote trapping natural heat.

So which one is the best one?

Ultimately the choice should be determined by analyzing your unique hair system. Experiment with different products and techniques to find what works best for you.

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DIY Fresh Deep Conditioning Hair Masks

What is a Hair Mask

A spa inspired hair treatment that will wrap you in lush moisture. A mask for hair, just like the ones we use for our face and body, is used to deeply nourish your scalp and your hair from root to tip. You could buy pre-made in a jar but I say save the money and mash up your mask from things you already have in your kitchen. Masks can easily be made fresh at home on demand with whole foods that you already have in your kitchen. Incorporating a hair mask can add luster, shine, and strength to your hair. It also helps in preventing hair frizz, breakage, and splitting. Hair masks do not replace your conditioning practice in your hair care routine, they augment it.

Who should use hair masks

Everyone with hair. Anyone can really benefit but the ones who really should are people who have frizz and breakage challenges as well as those who suffer from dry conditions. Also if you have long hair masking the ends can be beneficial. People who have chemically altered their hair through dyes or perms or relaxers could also benefit. Chemically processing your hair causes damage to the shaft and even the scalp so you’ll want to replenish your hair systems nutrients. A hair mask can help for all of these situations.

When to use a mask and how often

We recommend only masking your hair once a week at most. If you have damage that you need to repair, we recommend a solid hair care routine that nourishes the entire system and give it time. Hair masks can be very restorative and hydrating but if they are used to often or left on for to long they can be deleterious to your hair health. We recommend leaving your hair mask on for 5 minutes to no more than 20 minutes.

What you need to get started

  • Hair towels
  • Shower cap
  • Wide toothed comb or hair pic
  • Freshly blended hair mask *see below for our pics and recommendations

How to apply the Hair Mask treatment

Time needed: 1 hour and 15 minutes

A hair mask applied once a week can help repair damaged hair and scalp as well as strengthen the hair shaft, encourage new growth, and give your hair a natural shine.

  1. Start with moist hair

    When your hair is moist, it is easier for it to absorb nutrients. Wetting your hair softens the protective cuticle that wraps around your hair fibers.

  2. With a comb or pic section your hair

    Creating smaller divisions of your hair to work the mask into makes it easier to get a full even coverage.

  3. Apply the mask to your hair

    With your fingers, dip into the bowl with your freshly blended mask and scoop some out. Smear that onto your hair and or scalp. *If you are doing a ling hair treatment than focus only on the tips first. **If you are doing a scalp treatment then focus the mask on the scalp first.

  4. Wrap it up

    Once you have applied the mask, it’s time to let it work its magic so wrap it up. If you are doing a steam treatment, follow the steps here. *This is where you want to grab that shower cap to cover your hair and scalp.

  5. Set the timer for 20 minutes Max

    You need to give it at least 5 minutes but no more than 20 minutes to work.

  6. Rinse out

    Make sure you rinse out all of the plant matter from your hair. You may wish to use a wide toothed comb or a hair pick to make sure you get any residue out. You can shampoo if you want or simply use a ACV rinse, but why? You really don’t need to as long as you rinse well and flush out the plant matter.

  7. Style and Go

    That’s it! Style and go. We recommend you gently towel dry and air dry your hair.

Fresh Hair Mask

Tres Spa Polka Dot Pedicure Gift

All of our recommendations are Planet friendly and Vegan friendly. You can read our article on Feeding Your Hair to get the particulars of the what and why to add various ingredients to your mask but here is our short list to get you started:

  • Wetting Agents – two purposes, 1) to add nutrients and 2) to help blend a smooth mask
    • Plant Milk – You can easily make your own by blending the nuts, seeds, or shreds with water. Simple!
      • Coconut Milk
      • Hemp Milk
      • Flax Milk
    • Other Wetting agents:
      • ACV (Apple Cider Vinegar)
      • Lemon Juice
      • Très Spa Hair Hydro
  • Base – this is the other plant matter used to provide hydrating nourishment to your hair.
    • Fruits
      • Avocado
      • Banana
      • Strawberry
    • Other Plants
      • Pumpkin
      • Aloe Vera
      • Oatmeal – this can help thicken your hair mask if it is too runny. It is also very soothing for damaged scalp.
  • Extra – Consider using one of these to really spice up your hair mask.
    • Spices and Herbs:

When I am making fresh masks, I never measure. I am only obsessed with measuring when I am formulating Très Spa Products. When I am making fresh masks for my personal use, I let go and let the mood and inspiration carry me. As a general guidance I would offer this advise, start with the base and add liquid to the desired consistency. Anytime you are making a really wet (thin) mask, use oatmeal to thicken it. Always use your food processor or blender to mix your hair mask. You want a smooth rich blend that will be easy to rinse out. Mix up enough to generously cover your hair and /or scalp.

Some suggested blends to help inspire you:

  • Scalp Repair – Hemp or Flax milk, Oatmeal, Avocado, and Peppermint *add aloe if you have some. This one is lovely for those who suffer from dry scalp conditions or Psoriasis or Eczema of the scalp.
  • Stimulating Hair Grower – Hemp milk, Pumpkin, Cinnamon
  • Clarifying – Strawberry, Lemon juice, Peppermint
  • Frizz Tamer – Banana, Coconut milk, ACV, Aloe

Where is the oil?

OK by now you should have noticed that I did not add any kind of oil to any of my ingredient lists for your hair mask. Are you wondering why? Well I’ll tell you even if you weren’t. Chances are you are already using some form of oil in your regular hair care routine. Hair Masks are special. Adding too much oil can cause build up issues for just about every hair system. It should only be used if all other botanical treatment blends do not work or for supper delicately brittle hair and when you have highly porous hair cuticles. Each and every one of your hair follicles has a sebaceous glad with it. The sebaceous gland produces sebum to help lubricate the hair follicle and provide nourishment for strong healthy hair. We need to support our hair systems natural ability and not clog up the pores with excess oil that is more difficult to wash away.

We are not your Doctor

The Très Spa website may contain articles on science, or medical topics; however, no warranty is made that any of the articles are accurate.There is absolutely no assurance that any statement contained or cited in an article touching on science or medical matters is true, correct, precise, or up-to-date. The overwhelming majority of such articles are written, in part or in whole, by nonprofessionals. Even if a statement made about science or medicine is accurate, it may not apply to you or your symptoms.

The information provided at Très Spa is, at best, of a general nature and cannot substitute for the advice of a medical professional (for instance, a qualified doctor/physician, nurse, pharmacist/chemist, and so on). None of the individual contributors, nor anyone else connected to Très Spa can take any responsibility for the results or consequences of any attempt to use or adopt any of the information presented on this web site.

Nothing on Très Spa’s site or included as part of any project or product of Très Spa, should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a medical opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of medicine.