Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Sad Farewell to ivi Scents

April 15, 2012 had a high point and a low.  My high point was that it was Sunday morning, and I was exactly where I needed to be… arms raised with earnest heart at Faith Fellowship Church, in Macedonia, Oh.

My low point was when I opened my e-mail later that evening on Yahoo.  The sender was from one of my favorite people… Aarin, CEO of iviScents!  The subject line was unlike any I’ve received from her before – it was very harsh and to-the-point. 

It read, “Going out of business – Huge announcement”.

I read the e-mail with tears almost welling in my eyes.  I had finally found a bar soap and lotion that I loved and made me feel good.

Aarin is a wonderful young woman with an entrepreneurial spirit who started her own company as a result of being laid off from her teaching career.  With a lot of prayer, hard work, research, and the last bit of her savings she began ‘ivi Scents’, a bath and body line full of soaps, body icings, sugar scrubs, & bath bombs all completely free of toxins (sulfates, parabens, mineral oils, triclosan, GMOs, phthalates, and free from animal cruelty).  

Milk & Honey.  Smells yummy!

Ozone - It smells crisp, clean, and cottony.

 After discovering ivi Scents through a YouTube video review I immediately jumped on Aarin’s website at  I must admit, the website did a wonderful job in recruiting me!  Hahaha  The website had a fresh and fun vibe.  Not only that, but there were two deciding factors that led me into making my first purchase: first, Aarin was the owner and founder of her very own business, yet she stayed humble and regularly corresponded with her customers, and second, I noticed a small scripture plastered on the bottom of the web-site, as well as on the corner of all her products.  (Psalms 149: 4 - For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation. NKJV)

I truly wanted to support ivi Scents and made my first purchase in January 2012. 
At the time, I was in between jobs and didn’t have much money so I decided to try the ‘buy 1 get 1 free’ deal on the limited edition holiday scent – Peppermint Kissed.
Needless to say, I fell in love!  The variety of smells are yummy, and knowing I am applying products to my skin that are free of toxic scum is a bonus! 

Smells just like a candy cane!  :)
The body icing butter feels like silk melting in your skin.  The consistency is unlike any other lotion or body butter I've ever experienced.  It's a bit more work to work into your skin, but worth EVERYTHING!

 Since January I’ve used store bought shower gel and shampoo only a couple of times and could tell a major difference! 

I have a little experiment for anyone who would like to test or try out…

Bust out two brand new loofahs - one specifically for the soap or shower gel you normally use and the second is to be used inclusive of ivi Scents soaps.

Because of my sensitive skin I recently started using Aveeno before discovering ivi Scents, and yes, you may see the slightly more expensive stuff I used to love hiding behind the white loofah.  Even the expensive stuff I loved has now become my 'ex' since using ivi Scents. ha ha ha

Use your normal shower gel/soap for 1 month.
With the other loofah use ivi Scents soap for 1 month.

If, after your experiment, you’re like me you will notice a difference on your skin.  Ivi Scents truly gets me feeling squeaky clean after my shower.  The other soaps (and may I remind you, again, they are filled with sulfates, parabens, etc..) leave my skin feeling like I can’t rinse it enough!

The other thing you will notice is the difference between the two loofahs.  One will be highly scented and a bit softer.  The other may have a slight scent, but you will notice more of a ‘plastic-y’ smell… the same new smell as when it was first bought from the store.  They will both feel a bit different.

The loofah that was used with ivi Scents is the one that may feel a bit more stiff/newer with just a slight plastic-y smell. 
The reason?  Ivi Scents is made without any harsh chemicals and toxins which results in a squeaky clean feel without any left over residue.  The proof is in your skin… and in your loofah!

The next subject I’d like to include in my post is about hair loss.

I started losing my hair about 5 – 7 years ago and hasn’t stopped… until recently.
In fact, during these years I experienced spurts of hair loss that became out of control to the point of losing clumps at a time!  Trust me.  It’s NOT a good look, especially when you have fine hair as it is!

I read somewhere that sulfates (which are in your shampoos) are an irritant and people with sensitivities (ME, ME, ME) may experience hair loss from ongoing use.
With this in mind I thought, “What will it hurt if I try washing my hair with this toxin-free bar soap?” 
I never washed my hair with any kind of bar soap in the past, but I kinda figured I’d give it a try with ivi Scents since there are no sulfates. 

I’m not telling anyone to switch from their shampoo to ivi Scents bar soap for washing hair, but I am saying that I will NEVER go back to regular shampoo.  EVER! 
My hair loss has significantly decreased since using, and feels more healthy and full of volume.  This is a first for me in YEARS.  There were two times since January that I used regular old store bought shampoo and couldn’t stand how limp, greasy, and weighted down my hair felt.  Simply amazing!

Now that you know all the reasons why I love ivi Scents, I’m sure you understand how sad of a day it was, for me, to find out this wonderful little company is going out of business.  What am I to do now??  The first thing I did was place an order to keep myself stocked with ivi scents for as long as I can.  When I go through my last product I’m sure I can go to a place like Whole Foods and find a good soap/shampoo/lotion that’s toxin free, BUT I already know I’ll be paying an arm and a leg for these specialty items.  Not only that, but who else makes soaps and lotions so delicious you want to eat them!
Can I make a little confession?

The day I read Aarin’s sad e-mail I instantly thought that maybe there would be a bombardment of customers buying all her products up in support of her business endeavor, resulting in a spike in sales and no need for shutting the doors. 
Unfortunately, I’m still holding on to this last bit of hope.

As sad as it is that Aarin has to close the doors to ivi Scents, all I can do (as Aarin’s loyal customer) is purchase and stock up on my most favorite soaps and body icings, and continue supporting Aarin by my prayers that after this door is closed another door will open.

I love ivi Scents and I love Aarin.  <3  

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Greater Cleveland Aquarium

The Greater Cleveland Aquarium

The Greater Cleveland Aquarium is located within the PowerHouse  in downtown Cleveland tucked within the West Bank of the flats.

As convenient as that may seem I was totally unaware the aquarium was located within the PowerHouse. And so, this was the start of my disappointments. 

I guess, for some reason, I assumed The Greater Cleveland Aquarium was going to be
in its very own large, upscale building - setting it out from the rest - possibly a building with some great aquatic artwork, like the Cleveland Public Power building that sits on Marginal Road...

(Maybe my next post should be about the mystery of the whale painting on the side of the Cleveland Public Power building. Lol  I remember always thinking that building was an aquarium when I was little and my dad would drive the family down to the lake.)

My boyfriend and I purchased our tickets for $21.95 each PLUS tax of course, and received our little map.

At the time I thought it was a fair price, but within the first 5 minutes of walking through the exhibit I was getting very disappointed.
It seemed somewhat small, cramped, and almost as if we paid bookoo money just to see the same fish as we would have at the Cleveland MetroParks Zoo!

Even though I was quite disappointed I enjoyed a few pretty cool displays.

Overall, walking through the entire aquarium took less than an hour, and as with almost all exhibits it was necessary for the two of us to walk through the gift shop upon exiting. 

I really enjoyed the experience, but truly feel it was worth $15.00 admission MAX instead of $21.95 PLUS tax.  Yes, I understand the admission is higher due to the '1 million gallons of water' they use, the 'shark tank that homes 15 sharks', the 'underwater seatube that’s 149ft long', the '5,000 fish +', etc., but I somehow feel I was slightly gypped.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to have experienced The Greater Cleveland Aquarium, but I think next time my boyfriend and I will just go to the Cleveland MetroParks Zoo… on a free admission Monday and see most of the same fish for free IF they're still there.

Has anyone else visited The Greater Cleveland Aquarium since its grand opening in January of 2012?  What did you think about it?  Leave a comment!  I comment back at ya! 

Create a DYNAMICAL day everyone!  <3