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Authors - Julia Hamfelt (clear)
Do you know which way the wind is blowing?
Often used in Chinese New Year celebrations for their symbolic meaning of 'turning one's luck around', pinwheels became widely popular children's toys in North America in the early 1920s. But they aren't just for kids anymore! You've likely spotted a pinwheel or two in bridesmaid's bouquets, table centerpieces or as decorative garden flourishes. Inspired by our pinwheel-adorned Mother's Day gift, Happiness, this craft is simple, beautiful and sure to impress your mother dearest.
- Colorful, double-sided craft paper
- Large straws (or wooden dowels with a hole drilled through the top)
- Small felt or fabric flowers
- Long, bendable pins
- Medium-sized round beads
Step 1 The very first, and most important, step is to make sure your paper is a perfect square. Fold your paper in half, and then in half again, to find the center. Mark it with an X.
Step 2 With your pencil and ruler, draw straig...
Shea trees grow throughout Sub-Saharan Africa and produce the small, shiny nuts that eventually transform into the gorgeous shea butter we use in our products.
We recently visited our suppliers, The Ojoba Women's Cooperative, in Ghana to learn how they create shea butter, from the first crack of their shells to the smooth final product!
1. A nut picking group gathers the unshelled nuts from surrounding shea trees. They crack each nut to remove the shell, and then wash them thoroughly.
2. The clean, de-shelled nuts are then spread out on a great slab of concrete to dry. Several of the ladies are known as resident 'nutologists' and specialize in picking out any nuts that might compromise the quality of their final butter.
3. The dry nuts are brought indoors to a grinder. The grinder creates a fine powder that looks (and smells) like cocoa powder.
This past February, we traveled 7000 miles across the globe to meet our shea butter supplier, the Ojoba Women's Shea Butter Cooperative in Bolgatanga, Ghana.
In five whirlwind days of ceremonies and celebrations, we created a lifetime of amazing memories. Our favorite moment? Oh, we couldn't possible choose one. How about five of them?
5. The Dancing. All the Dancing
Dancing is an important part of Frafra culture. It accompanies almost every reason for gathering; greeting guests, saying goodbye, thank you, we're happy to see you... the list goes on. You name it- they bust a move. At formal ceremonies, the women usually form a large circle and take turns jumping in the centre to perform. Their voices are the melody and their hands the beat, encouraging each woman as she has her moment of expression. It was remarkable, the energy that radiated off of them as they danced with their whole body. If you haven't watched this video about our trip to Ghana yet, do it right now!
4. Getting Our Hands in the Shea Butter
Did we hope that we'd get to make shea butter? Of course. Did we think we'd actually get to work alongside the women on a fresh batch? No way! Luckily for us, the women of O...
We're proud to be cruelty-free at LUSH.
We test all of our products on very willing human participants, instead of subjecting animals to shampoo in their eyes or soap down their throats. Sounds reasonable, right? Unfortunately, animal testing is a cruel, irrelevant practice that is still commonplace for many companies. Tens of thousands of products lining the shelves of your local drugstore, supermarket or department store are regularly tested on defenseless animals.
How do you know if a company tests on animals? Read the labels! Our packaging says 'Fighting Animal Testing', but other brands will state their message simply, like 'Not tested on animals' or 'We do not test on animals'.
Don't be too quick to judge- if the label doesn't state either way, it doesn't necessarily mean the company tests on animals. The best way to be sure is to contact them directly and ask about their policy. If they do test on animals, ask them why and let them know that you're concerned as a customer. If you're a longstanding customer who won't be buying their product anymore because of animal testing, tell them that too! It's a powerful message, and one that more companies need to hear in order to change their policies.
Here are the top five products you regularly purchase (and might not know are tested on animals):
Okay, this may seem like an obvious one, but many people don't know that the term 'cosmetics' extends beyond mascara and nail polish. It also includes soap, shampoo, facial cleansers, body lotions- anything you put on your skin for cosmetic purposes.
Who knew that a nut so small could create such change?
Twice a year, we buy ten tons of Shea butter directly from the Ojoba Women's Cooperative in Ghana, West Africa, and we use it in everything from massage bars to lip balms for its rich, moisturizing effect on the skin. This past February, we embarked on the adventure of a lifetime and traveled to the Upper East Region of Ghana to meet the women of Ojoba and witness the impact making Shea butter has had on their lives...
"It's always been about the people", said Johan, "We fell in love with them. You will too."
It was 2003; Johan and Tracy Wulfers were traveling through Ghana when they visited a group of forty women processing Shea butter by hand beneath a baobab tree. Curious, they struck up conversation to inquire about the mysterious substance they were furiously kneading in rhythmic, swooping motions. The women quickly derailed their curiosity, however, as they began to talk about their lives. They spoke of their children, their families and the daily struggle they faced to provide even the most basic necessities. The more they shared; the more Johan and Tracy wanted to work with them.
Having previously spent time in Western Africa as volunteer teachers, Johan and Tracy had seen firsthand the challenges faced by communities lacking financial resources.
They brought the Shea butter home to Portland with them and began selling it at local markets- the response was overwhelmingly positive. An o...