The Great Skin Care Experiment

I’m hatching a plan in my mind, are you ready for it? Of course you are, you have begun to expect my particular brand of crazy around here, right? We had The Whole 30, The Great Zone Experiment, last year’s Look Better Naked — I mean, You know I LOVE a good experiment! I start to get a little anxious if I am not challenging myself and it’s weird and I know it. We are all on the same page here. πŸ™‚

What I’ve decided — and it’s been kind of a long time coming — is that it is time to get to the bottom of some of my skin issues, and finally find a skin rejuvenation treatment that works for me. I have made some great strides with my diet and fitness over the last 2 years, dropped a ton of weight and improved my overall health; however, the skin situation is still hanging on to let me know that something still isn’t quite right. You skin is the largest organ in your body, right? So when stuff continually shows up there, it is my opinion that your body is talking to you. Mine seems to not want to shut up, so I’ve decided I’m going to listen. Thus, based on this site, it has become imperative for me to find the right solution to my skin-related problems. This situation brings along the confusion to find the right products that would suit my skin by knowing the pros and cons of it. For instance, when I discovered that rosehip oil has proven beneficial for many people, the question that I had in mind was does rosehip oil clog pores. You might have similar questions related to other products. In such cases, I would recommend researching more about the products and taking the expert’s advice to know what is right for you.

Naked picture of my face. OH MY.

One of the most awesome takeaways I had with the Whole 30 is that sometimes managing the little things makes such a big difference, so I’ve decided to let that inform my this experiment. I think it is a complex issue and for me I think it is a mix of gut issues from a lifetime of carrying extra weight, lifestyle/stress issues, and hormones. And for the record when I say “Hormones” I don’t mean it in that in a once a month, blanket type of way that we as women have a tendency to use the word “hormonal.” Hormones aren’t the enemy. They don’t exist in your body to make your skin look crappy and to give you mood swings that make your boyfriend crazy. They are a system in your body that has a function, and if it is not functioning right — hey, why not get to the bottom of it? The exfoliators for face is what one needs to have a clearer and better skin.

Seeing a functional medicine doctor 2 years ago, going Paleo because of it, and learning so much more than I ever wanted to know about hormones, neurotransmitters and gut health and how it all interacts with the food we eat has really given me so many ideas of why my skin is potentially still flaring up a bit, but at this point I’ve just made a bunch of lists of things I could potentially change and never really said “Hey I’m going to pay attention to all of these little things at once and see if they make a difference on my face.” I’ve decided to change that and do something about it. The Touch Up Laser is Vegas cellulite treatment is what you can have a look at to get smooth and soft skin. Generally, you can get treatments such as Skin Rejuvenation Treatments in Las Vegas, NV or similar services at a place like this Med Spa in Hattiesburg,MS.

My hypothesis: I think the little things will make a difference. And so I’m going to make some changes.

And I’m making these changes during the month of October so let’s just call October the month of The Great Skin Care Experiment. I’ve done A LOT of thinking about most of this, and some of it has to do with my own personal medical history and my skin care history, so this post may seem like a willy nilly oversimplification but I assure you it is the culmination of a lot of research. Also, please don’t think I’m telling YOU to do this. It’s a bit nutty and I’m okay with that, and don’t think my methods are for everyone. But since this will be on my plate for October I thought I’d let you know.

Today, specifically, I thought I’d outline the main changes that I’m easing into right now, but will be going full force with starting in October. Where I can, I’m providing links to what inspired them, but I imagine I will be talking more about them in the future. If there is anything you would like me to address in more detail, feel free to let me know. There are 11 changes, and most are internal things I’ll be addressing (diet/supplement/lifestyle changes) but also I would thank my dermatologist and medical spa for the pigmentation removal procedure to help improve in the appearance of my skin.Β  This is one of the external things going on (physical changes I’ll be making with respect to skin.) Here’s the rundown, and after 30 days we will see if monitoring these 11 factors make a difference.

A QUICK NOTE ABOUT DIET: Since I do think it is the foundation of this experiment, I think it is worth noting I plan to keep to 90% Whole 30 Eating, which I have found mostly easy to maintain. That 10% will include some Paleo-ified staples like banana muffins on occasion and my beloved red wine if I feel like it. But still no gluten, no dairy, and just generally eating for nutrient density. I’m keeping the diet clean with intentions on adding in some of the strategies below.

Internal Actions

1. HOLY CRAP, I’m giving up coffee (and subsequently, caffeine)

I’m not even sure I can talk about this just yet, but you all I am taking the plunge. 30 days, no coffee. HOLD ME CLOSER, TONY DANZA.
The upside: I really love herbal tea. (Just keep telling yourself that Holly.) I worked in coffee & tea for years so I really do enjoy a good cup of tea, but no doubt this will be a huge adjustment for me and I’m not quite sure I will survive. But it’s time. The relationship between caffeine and your adrenal system (something that I really need to keep a close eye on) coupled with my PASSION for a good cup are not always a match made in heaven. Plus, I’m also veering into a liiiiiitttle bit of an unhealthy place with my coffee dependence and when I saw this the other day it spoke to me:

So. Let’s do this.

2. Taking a Fermented Cod Liver Oil/Butter Blend supplement Supplement

If you spend any time listening to the Balanced Bites Podcast, Diane and Liz make a great case for this supplement. For your skin, and for your life. Ooooh, didn’t that make it sound extra dramatic? πŸ™‚ Anyway, I’m trying it.

3. Incorporating Brewer’s Yeast into my routine
The inspiration genesis of Brewer’s Yeast (as well as the Fermented Cod Liver Oil Supplement) came mostly from this Cave Girl Eats skincare post. I mean, hello, results. So. Let’s add that into the mix as well since we’re shaking things up.

4. Exploring (eek!) Organ Meats
Is pastured liver the cure all for everything? I don’t know, lots of people make great cases for the nutrient density of organ meats so I am going to work to find some ways to incorporate them into my diet. I don’t know whether to cringe and crawl in a hole, or get excited for the culinary challenge. I’ll get back to you on that. πŸ™‚

5. Regularly Eat Fermented Foods
I started this during the Whole 30 with sauerkraut, but I’m thinking about doing a little more exploring. This was a great podcast on kombucha (organ meats too! YIKES) so I may explore that a bit just for fun. Allison (who is a wonderful resource you should all be reading) sent me an email full of information (Thanks, lady!) and I’ve gotten some amazing links from readers of things to explore on this topic, so again – more on this possibly in the future.

6. Adding in Some Bone Broth
Do you drink bone broth? Have you heard of all of it’s wonderful properties? Why inject collagen when you can drink it, eh? I don’t even know what I’m saying right now, so forget that, but bone broth. I’m exploring that. I made a huge batch this weekend. I’m uh…too scared to use it so far, but baby steps.

7. Potentially focusing on some particular nutrients

Chris Kresser has been putting out some amazing resources for addressing skin issues with diet. His 3 part Nutrition for Healthy Skin seriesΒ has been really enlightening as well as his podcast about gut health and acne. He makes some great recommendations I’m considering.

External Actions

1. Purchase a Clarisonic — Yep I took the plunge. And I’m excited to see if it is as life changing as everyone claims. Since it is made by the same folks who make my Sonicare toothbrush (which DID change my life!) I have high hopes.

2. Use only Non-Toxic Skin, Makeup + Body Care Products

I’ll talk about this in another post, but basically if it has Parabens, Pthalates or other crap that isn’t doing my body good, I’m swapping it for something else. For the best shampoo, people can check out aveeno shampoo, if they need the best one! I’m not gunning to be the world’s best hippie or save the environment on this one. What I’m doing is trying to keep things as natural and non-toxic as possible during this period of time. That means bye bye super awesome wrinkle creams. Let’s just see what happens, eh? And I’m eventually going to get those dermal fillers I’ve been postponing regardless.Β  I know I keep saying skin is our largest organ so I best be treating it right everywhere. I figure if I’m going to be complaining about how the skin on my face is acting, I better at least make an effort to treat my skin EVERYWHERE pretty well.

Makeup products like Acne Control Foundation from Oxygenetix, as well as lotion, skin care, deodorantβ€”we’re going full on Au Natural. This actually wasn’t too big of a change for me, but to be honest I had never paid too much attention. Come October, the labels on my beauty products are going to be short. This is where I shop for my favorite skincare products.

3. Dry Brushing

I just think this sounds fun! And since it is supposed to promote skin and organ health, why not use this month to get in the habit? Fun times.

4. Give Oil Cleansing Another Try

I had a very…um, not great experience with Oil Cleansing the first time around. I experimented with many different formulas and all of them (even the 10% castor oil one) made me feel like I was washing and moisturizing my face with battery acid. But you know, I’m a glutton for punishment, so I may try again. And instead of using jojoba for the moisturizing element (my skin is SUPER dry) maybe I’ll roll with coconut. We’ll see.


And that’s the plan man. It’s kind of nutty right? But as with everything nutty I do, I always seem to learn something. I don’t imagine this will be any different.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

65 Responses to The Great Skin Care Experiment

  1. Jeff says:

    Let’s just say I’m really excited for you, and for #4. Also, a little excited for #5. If you get to homebrewing some Kombucha, teach me, I love the stuff.

    • Holly says:

      Listen Jeff, if you have any AWESOME organ meat suggestions, you just send them my way because I am scaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaared. But you know, I’ll try anything once.

      • bethanyrx says:

        Grind some liver up in your food processor. Freeze in ice cube trays. Toss some cubes into anything you’re making with ground meat, esp meatballs, burgers, chili. πŸ˜€

  2. Michelle says:

    I’m looking forward to hearing about your experiences with fermented CLO and organ meats. I’ve been too scared to take the plunge with both of those, but I know I’d benefit from them. Any tips you have for dealing with the ick factor would be greatly appreciated.

    I promise you that bone broth isn’t scary at all–it’s just stock! I’m not a big fan of sipping a mug of it, but in the cooler months, I make a big batch of soup with it every week and have a little every day. Chicken bone broth is probably easier to start with if you’re nervous. There’s definitely a stronger smell with beef bone broth.

    When I tried the oil cleansing method in the past, it always made me break out in the beginning, so I gave up. It might be worth trying everything else first and then add the OCM a month or so later so you don’t have too many variables starting at once.

    Good luck with the great experiment! I can’t wait to read all about it!

    • Holly says:

      It IS scary and has been on my list for so long. I had to set a date or I would just keep thinking about it and not doing it. Maybe I will try chicken next, the beef broth is kind of scary πŸ™‚ I figure I will put it in soup though I wish I could just substitute that for my morning cup of coffee — THAT probably isn’t going to happen realistically. πŸ™‚

      With OCM I didn’t really break out, like with acne, mostly my skin was just so incredibly dry it hurt all the time. And then it started getting raw in patches like a rash. So who knows, maybe it won’t work for me at all. But I’m wondering if coconut oil will help? No idea. I’m just rolling with the punches. πŸ™‚

      • Michelle says:

        Yeah, I think bone broth as a coffee replacement is pretty scary. But let us know if you get there!

        The rawness sounds terrible! Do you think it could have been from the hot water and washcloth? I liked how my skin looked after steaming and exfoliating, but I’m wondering if the temperature of the water was part of what made me break out. I usually wash my face with cool water at night and with warm water in the shower, and I was using pretty hot water with the OCM. The few times I’ve gotten facials, the esthetician has told me not to use hot water because it’s too stimulating for my skin type. You’ve motivated me to give OCM another try with coconut oil and cooler water and see how it goes.

  3. K says:

    Not going to lie, the mention of organ meats had me exclaiming, “Holly balls.” in my office.

    Also, I think it was Terry Gross (maybe Diane Rehm?) (no, it was Terry) had a guest on earlier this spring/summer who spoke exclusively about fermented foods and their effect on the gut. It was super interesting.

    I’m looking forward to reading about how this all plays out for your skin. : )

    • Holly says:

      OMG I KNOW…the organ meat thing is whacky. Maybe I will figure out some Jessica Seinfeld way to get organ meats into my diet and sell a cookbook that will make me a millionaire and I will buy 500 cars and live in New York.

      Or maybe not.

      But OBVS, I will keep everyone posted πŸ™‚ hehe

      If the Terry Gross show was with Sandor Katz I totally heard it and put that book on hold STAT. Should be interesting (you know, assuming I actually get it sometime this century.)

  4. Erin says:

    I’m kinda on the same program and have been trying to heal my never-ending acne for forever! The topical products that made the biggest difference to me are from Primal Life Organics! Pricey yes, but I also had 0 results from OCM and various other handmade products. The washes (Earth is my absolute favorite!!!) And the serums have been incredible at minimizing new breakouts while not drying the crap out of my pain in the ass face. I’m still working on fixing the hormonal stuff, but Trina has a phenomenal line of everything skin care.

  5. Erin says:

    Oh, and liver is gross, I’m not going to lie. I hate the smell, the taste, the texture, the taste….BUT made into a slurry and mixed into heavily seasoned ground meat at a 1:4 (or 5 if the smell is super off-putting that day) liver: meat ratio makes the liver virtually undetectable. Even better if some heart goes into the mix!

    • Holly says:

      HORK! Oh the thought of it smelling just freaked me out. HA! Good suggestion on the ground beef though! Thanks!

  6. Michelle says:

    Yay! I get super excited about these things! Guess that’s why I decided I wanted to be an esthetician – so if I do manage to make it up to Estes when you guys are here, don’t be freaked out if it seems like I’m checking out your skin…It’s my passion! πŸ˜‰

    I would advise going easy on the Clarisonic though. It is lovely, but a lot of women think, oh if using it just a little is this amazing, let’s do more! Don’t do more! Unless you like breaking down your collagen and irritating your skin, then totally do more.

    Can’t wait to hear about your progress!

    • Holly says:

      I have suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuper sensitive skin so I generally ease into these things anyway, but thanks so much for the advice! Not into irritation, NOTHANKYOU.

      And feel free to check out my skin. Also — COME TO ESTES PARK! YAY! I mean if I can post an awful naked face pic, I don’t mind people checking me out with some makeup on. πŸ™‚

    • Holly says:

      Oh…also, my esthetician expert — what say you about the oil cleansing method? So curious!

      • Michelle says:

        That’s all I use, so I guess I say I’m down with it πŸ™‚ I go the coconut oil route (not for everyone) because I have dry skin AND live in Colorado so it needs all the moisture it can get. After cleansing I top it off with a combo of squalane/squalene (no one can agree on how to spell it) oil (plant sourced), water, and Na-PCA spray…then more coconut oil!

  7. Beth says:

    Looking forward to reading this! I recently saw on FB that the Whole9’ers take liver “supplements” (cut nearly frozen liver into tiny pieces to swallow daily) – I’m thinking that might be a realistic way I can get it into my diet without having to think about cooking it and turning it into something edible.

    • Holly says:

      I am totally willing to revert to that if necessary. It actually sounds so much less scary that way and I’m ok at taking pills. But part of me wants to see if I can make it taste good — the challenge of it is appealing. I’m…doubtful, but damn if I’m not going to try! (And then freeze and chop my liver up!) That sounded bad. You know what I mean πŸ™‚

      • Beth says:

        If you do create any tasty recipes, please share on the blog! I am more than willing to try cooking it as I can only imagine what non-Paleo fiancΓ© is going to say when I finally get around to chopping up the frozen liver in our fridge and start swallowing it raw. πŸ™‚

  8. Yay! You’re SO welcome! I’m looking forward to reading more about your skin journey…I’m on one myself at the moment…trying to figure out how to balance hormones holistically is tough!

  9. Mariah says:

    Love this post… so many great ideas!

    Kudos on the naked skin pictures… best way to measure progress, for sure. πŸ™‚

    Good luck with the caffeine! Maybe you could add in some b-vitamins for energy in the morning? I love my bone broth, I’ve just added that into my daily diet in the last few weeks. There’s something so soothing about it, even in the warm summer days. I’m sure if the hot tea or bone broth might help fill that “warm-cup-of-coffee-in-your-hand” comfort feeling.

    Organ meats. Urk. I actually just got some liverwurst from US Wellness. Turns out, it doesn’t taste that bad, especially mixed with ground beef and made into meatloaf. They have a nice blend of spices to mask the flavor. hah!

    I didn’t read those from Chris Kresser, but I know magnesium helps my gut health and skin, as well as a good probiotic. Of course, the fermented foods, which I can’t get kombucha past my nose… hah!, will have plenty probiotics in them.

    I already swapped out my lotion, facial moisturizer, and everything else “hydrating” for coconut oil. I love it. My skin is so soft, and I cleared away those red bumps on the backs of my arms.. for good! I always had touchy skin, quite oily too, and the coconut oil still works great.

    I still use a “natural” soap, shampoo, and conditioner plus a Norwex antibacterial (silver-infused) cloth. Makes the shower/bathroom sink pretty tidy! πŸ™‚

    Anyway, just a few musings of my own after reading about your challenge. Have fun… and keep us informed of your progress! πŸ™‚

  10. Mariah says:

    Oh, and easiest way (for me anyway) to do the bone broth is to use the crockpot. Put a bunch of knuckle bones (I used bison because they were on sale through Tropical Traditions) in, a few teaspoons of apple cider vinegar, a few veggies like onions, carrots, parsley, etc, and fill with water. Let it simmer for 72+ hours. You can also take some broth out, add more water, and keep the process going. My house smelled like an amazing Sunday dinner for 3 days straight. πŸ™‚

  11. I am excited to hear how your experiment goes. I’ve been dealing with similar skin issues but thankfully proactive has helped a lot. And I really do think the clarisonic is life changing. I bought it last year and it’s worth every penny. It’s amazing how much makeup it takes out of my pores. Just know, as I’m sure you’ve already read, that your skin is going to be AWFUL for the first two weeks. Like bad, cystic painful acne. Don’t stop using it. That’s totally normal. I just used blemish stuff on them until it went away. After two weeks suddenly my skin looked so much better. Good luck!

  12. Meg says:

    Just got back from vacation and feel like I missed SO MUCH in the blog world! πŸ™‚

    Good luck with the skin experiment, I’m anxious to see what works vs. what doesn’t work and am glad you are being the guinea pig – especially when it comes to organ meats! I grew up eating liver and never thought twice about it, but as an adult… just. can’t. do it.

    I have friends who love their Clarisonic, but I’m cheap so I bought the Oil of Olay version and use it once a week and pretty much love it! So I’m sure you’ll love the real thing.

    Tip for your bone broth – freeze it in ice cube trays. I warm up 4-5 cubes a day and drink it in the morning. It just makes me feel better!

    And I’ve also added fermented cod liver/butter oil to my need to do list. Anxious to see what you think!

    • Holly says:

      I haven’t received the cod liver blend yet, but I have to admit, I’m a little nervous about it. You know I’ll be blabbing on and on about it if I love it though, so I’ll keep ya posted! πŸ™‚

      • bethanyrx says:

        It is AWESOME. I have the cinnamon one, and at first I would toss back my little half-teaspoon and cringe, waiting for the fishy flavor… news flash, there is NONE. Now I actually kind of enjoy it!

        also, pro-tip: keep it in the fridge. πŸ˜€

  13. rachel says:

    I highly recommend you read “The Supercharged Hormone Diet” …it has great reviews, good science, and the ND that wrote the book is well-recognized in her field. There is also a book by her called the “Carb Sensitivity Diet”.

  14. Jen says:

    Organ meats are tasty. You can always hide a liver in a meatloaf. Also, your eyebrows are really nicely shaped.

    • Holly says:

      HA! Thanks for saying that — I’ve been having baby panic attacks all day that my naked face picture is up here. Way to focus on the positive. I love you for that right now. Lots of people have suggested the liver/meatloaf route so I guess I’m going to have to try it! πŸ™‚ Thanks!

  15. Claire says:

    Fantastic Holly!

    On the coffee issue, I gave it up… about a year ago for migraines. I NEVER thought I could give up coffee- and I definitely had a couple false starts. After about a month without it though, I can honestly say I don’t miss it. Sometimes I still smell coffee grinds πŸ™‚ but I have no temptation to drink it- it just makes me think of migraines now!

    So it is doable! I think you’ll be surprised how you feel after a month without it.


    • Holly says:

      Thanks Claire. I may need to hear that story over and over. πŸ™‚ I’m scared about it, but you know, I was scared to give up bread too and now I couldn’t care less about not eating bread. But it gave me anxiety for a while, so. Fingers crossed!!!

  16. missysoupy says:

    Totally hyperventilating over here. I have been struggling with skin (and hormone) issues forever, and now I think I have to eat liver! HORK, indeed! Can’t wait to hear how this works for you. Work out all the kinks, and THEN I’ll try it, mmmkay?

  17. Holly says:

    Holly – A website for a great resource for awesome, natural and organic products is Naturals Cove. My sister’s friend started it and I’ve been using their products. They are amazing. Definitely check them out – like you said they have natural body care in addition to skin care items.

  18. Jillian says:

    Awesome post, Holly! I learned a ton and am excited to start tweaking my skin care myself. My New Years resolution was to get a “big girl” skin care routine, since, I am 33 years old and all. I don’t have acne, but I noticed my skin wasn’t taking abuse as well as it did in my 20s. I tried oil cleansing two years ago and didn’t really care for it, so this year I bought the Clarisonic, and it has been awesome. I use it with Philosophy’s cleanser, retinol and dry skin moisturizer, and it’s made a huge difference. My skin still seems dry, so I’m thinking about incorporating coconut oil before bed.

    I know I should give up coffee as well, but I’m just not there yet.

    • Holly says:

      A big girl skin routine! ha! Exactly. I feel like I’ve been TRYING to get one for like a decade! Maybe this one will stick πŸ™‚

      I’m excited about the Clarisonic and I have a Philosophy retinol sunscreen that I love (LOVE) but I am going to put it down for a month and see if I can maybe make some progress without it? Who the hell knows, girl. We will see what happens.

      And giving up coffee is for crazy people. Truly. I can’t even believe I’m trying, but I’m pretty sure it’s not doing me any favors so why not? (SOB!!!)

  19. Carol says:

    I had a little bit of a horrified look on my face when I read about giving up coffee. I sort of hope for your sake that caffeine is not the culprit here. I love the clarisonic, it really does make my face feel cleaner than just washing. I’ve had issues with my skin for the majority of my life and only in the past couple of years has it finally calmed down.
    Best of luck with getting to the bottom of this!

    • Holly says:

      I’m horrified just thinking about it. If I can actually do it, YIKES, we will see. I hope it’s not cafeeine either!!!

  20. Lauren says:

    I have to agree pretty strongly about the coffee. I really don’t function well without it, and not that I would lose my job, but I am pretty afraid of how badly I would be without my precious (my preeeeecious) caffeine.

    • Holly says:

      Ha! I just told my coworker about me giving up caffeine and said “If I’m a bitch for the entire month of October, this is why.” I think she is scared πŸ™‚ (Myyyyyy Preeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeecious. BAHAHAHA. Truth.)

      • Lauren says:

        Haha, you are a better woman than I am, I am certainly not ready to give it up. I am even on my second whole 30, and still not willing. BTW, love the “Cool World” reference in your name. That soundtrack was my first introduction into electronic music.

  21. Jennie says:

    I’m in awe of your commitment to better changes. Looking forward to reading along with this experiment!

  22. Stacey says:

    I have also mixed ground liver with ground meats (turkey, chicken and beef) to make them more palatable. It is not so much the taste, as the thought and texture, SO, make meatballs, meatloaf, cabbage parcels, etc. and you will probably do just fine. Also, I drink 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a large glass of water everyday when I get home from work. It has helped with digestion/gut issues as well as clearing up some of my acne. There is also a local company that has a really nice oil cleanser, called Tu’el Skincare that you might find helpul, I really like it:

  23. Jesabes says:

    If you want some free beef liver, come on over. We bought a 1/4 cow a while ago and my husband asked for the liver, thinking he could fix liver & onions like his Grandma did. He pronounced it inedible (as did Margaret), but I soldiered on with my “I do NOT waste food mantra.” I didn’t make it very long. It’s the texture that was the problem for us.

    Anyway, we still have a package of it, so take it from us, please. All you need to do is fly to Iowa:)

  24. ~Kate F. says:

    You are SO on the right track girl! Love it. πŸ™‚ Tip for the liver: Get your liver, blend it up in a food processor, and freeze that hot mess in ice cube trays. Pop out the liver cubes and store in a plastic bag. Add to meatballs, hamburgers, taco meat, meatloaf, etc.

  25. ~Kate F. says:

    Oh yeah, also wanted to mention Dandy Blend. It’s its own beverage, but a suitable coffee replacement that is also great for clearing out the liver. Dandelion = good for liver.

  26. Chloe says:

    SO excited for all the follow up posts about this!! Organ meat is a scary bastard at first let me tell you. We bought a half cow last year and the liver was SUPER intimidating at first. I diced it up super super finely and mixed it with ground beef and seasoned the hell out of it and ended up making a hash with it (sauteed onions, sweet potato etc) and it really helped hide it.

    I am so low maintenance on my skin care regime it’s sort of sad. I wash my face every other day with goats milk soap and then slather myself with coconut oil and look like a hot oily mess for a little while. Recently though (as ive gotten older, BLAH) I’ve noticed my skin going downhill so I’m interested to see how your experiment goes !

    Also,here’s to hoping you don’t have to lose the coffee forever, that would be massively tragic.

  27. Aleigh says:

    Thanks for the shout-out about dry brushing! Hope you love it. πŸ™‚

  28. Erica says:

    Okay, I followed you on the Whole30 thing, but I think you have officially out-ambitioned me. Plus, when I finished nursing Baby Two I swore, Scarlett O’Hara-style, that I would never go caffeine-free again.

  29. bethanyrx says:

    I have two words for you: MEAT TEA.

    (seriously, that’s what I call it when I’m drinking it… grosses Eric out for some reason. πŸ˜‰ )

    xoxo, B

  30. Nicole I says:

    I wanted to chime in about oil cleansing…I am super lazy about it, I just use a vitamin e oil on my face every other day and a wet washcloth to wash my face. I have the best skin I have had in years…probably a combo of oil cleansing and paleo diet. The castor oil business was too much for me. I am interested to see your outcome with some of our add ins.

  31. Pingback: The Colorado Adventure (Part One)

  32. Susan says:

    Hi Holly,
    I’ve been using jojoba oil to take off all of my makeup. Afterwards, I put some more jojoba oil onto my fingers and sprinkle sugar or fine sea salt and make a liquidy scrub and gently work it in for a minute or so.

    Rinse with warm water and then splash some cooler water on your face to finish it off. Your face feels amazing afterwards!

    I also am trying to stop the coffee habit. A few weeks ago I signed up at for green smoothie recipes. That site is filled with tons of healthy info. I’m not even craving the coffee like I used to and the greens added to a smoothie are so good. If you haven’t already seen the site, check it out!

  33. Roberta says:

    The trick to liver is bacon! The trick to bone broth is salt (at the end before you eat it). I have a post about both in my blog. I was scared of both of them and now LOVE and eat both multiple times per week.

  34. Harmony says:

    We make chicken livers with onions, cumin, sumac, a bit of pomegranate molasses-middle eastern style. I find eating it with roasted butternut squash makes it pretty tasty. I started out eating only about a Tbs at a sitting but I’m up to a few ounces now and the taste is growing on me. As for bone broth, I freeze mine in ice cube trays (I got some big silicone ones from crate and barrel) and then add them to anything that needs a bit of liquid instead of water. Good luck! Btw, just found your site from Mel’s and am loving it!

    • Holly says:

      That sounds delicious! And I’m currently OBSESSED with sumac, so… πŸ™‚ match made in heaven perhaps?

  35. Pingback: September Progress + October Intentions

  36. Madelyn says:

    Yay Holly! You have inspired me to start a whole 30! I’m so sick of food allergies and inflammation. Wish me luck, just got back from the store with all my stuff and I’m really excited. Here are a couple ideas I picked up in the years of working at a natural foods store. Usually breakouts on the face are a result of an over-taxed liver. From birth control, alcohol, hormones, detoxing whatever. We had great success with renew life’s liver detox (super easy 1 cap in the morning before breakfast and 1 cap at night before you go to sleep) and a FIBER supplement to catch and pull all the toxins you’ve cleansed out of your body. Psyllium seed powder is a very easy and effective fiber and gut friendly too. When your liver is back logged it shows up on your face when you cleanse unless you trap those toxins. Most of us ladies should do a liver cleanse at least 2x a year to make sure we are not letting our livers get behind. Even if you don’t want to an official liver detox you could still do the fiber supplement and see if it helps give your liver a break. Natural liver cleansers are dandelion tea or capsules (nature’s way which are also super high in vitamins) and bupleurum by planetary herbals (Amazing!! And inexpensive) another supplement that so many customers loved was called herpanacine. I know it sounds weird. Purple lid, flowers on the jar. But totally works, tons of testimonials! I think they give free samples online. So there’s my 2 cents! I 100% recommend these!!! πŸ™‚

  37. Madelyn says:

    Oh yeah, herpanacine is described at total skin support. I kinda lumped it in with the liver cleansers and fiber but it’s in a class all it’s own. It’s a different approach but one I think deserves exploration!

  38. Casey P says:

    I’m new to your blog – so hi! I’ve been doing Paleo for almost 7 weeks (but who’s counting?) and my skin looked so much better around weeks 4&5. Then came along week 6 and BOOM, my acne is back. I can’t figure it out. I’m actaully really excited to hear how your experiment goes. And I’m super interested in the Clarisonic – I saw that on QVC awhile back and fell in love. Not wanting to spend the money, I bought a Nuetrogena Wave to try first. I really do think it cleans my skin better (and I wear makeup), but those little pads are bad for the Earth and I’d like to take it up another notch. Please keep us posted!