Sustainable Hair Styles with S A Y A Designs

I'm not exactly the most creative when it comes to styling my hair, even less so now that I'm a working mom. My hair is naturally wavy and curly, so most days I let my hair air dry and let the waves fly free. Blowdrying and straightening my hair is pretty much relegated to days when I have important events or meetings.

When summer rolls around, I tend to keep my hair up and out of my face, but I easily get bored with standard ponytails and messy buns. This summer, I've got a new styling option—a unique and beautiful hair fork thanks to S A Y A Designs.

Usually when I see hair forks or similar products, I think I'd never be able to make them work in my hair and they would just sit unused.

When S A Y A offered me the chance to try and review the Barrette hair fork, I was still a tad skeptical that it would be something I'd use. I mean, remember back in the late 90s when hair chopsticks were a thing? I very much failed at using those.

However, on the first day of using my hair fork, I successfully kept my hair securely in a bun. I was immediately impressed. It works well enough to keep my hair up during the evening when I'm on the move doing housework, playing with/feeding my daughter and putting her to bed.

What I love is that it holds my hair in place without being too tight or crimping it like a ponytail holder does.

I've tried the hair fork with both wavy and straight hair, and it worked better in my wavy hair. I've had it for a few weeks now and have used it almost every day to pull my hair up into a loose, wavy bun.

S A Y A provides hair styling tutorials for their different hairpieces and cover all lengths of hair, giving you some inspiration on ways to wear your piece.

Each hair fork comes in a fabric sleeve so the wood is kept safe when not in use, and it's convenient for when I carry the accessory in my purse.

Beyond the functionality of the hair fork, it's also beautiful and sustainable. S A Y A creates all of their hairpieces from tree roots salvaged from old plantations. My hairpiece is made from reclaimed rosewood, and I absolutely love the color of it.

Searching for a way of sourcing wood sustainably, SAYA Designs came across Made & Wayan, sculptors who dig up and recycle root wood from old commercial plantations all across Indonesia. The roots are left behind by loggers harvesting trees on large-scale production sites. They take hundreds of years to decompose and have little value for the soil. By using this waste material we are having as little impact on the environment as possible.

In addition to using reclaimed wood, S A Y A is committed to sustainability by planting trees with each purchase - my hair fork helped to plant 8 trees and save 400 pounds in carbon dioxide in a year.

I'm very much looking forward to a summer of natural hairstyles with my reclaimed wooden hairpiece - I'll save time and energy on styling while still looking like I put in the effort.

Disclaimer: I received the Barrette hair fork at no charge in exchange for writing a review. However, all opinions are my own!

Earth Day 2019

Happy Earth Day, everyone! I love the spirit and attention the environment gets today - it gets me even more hyped up and heart-eye-emoji for this cause.

April has been quite the whirlwind behind the scenes, but I am excited to have checked a few items off of my bucket list.


Putting Together an Eco Easter Basket

Easter baskets are not something I have dealt with in years, but this year, I was excited to put together something small, sweet and eco-friendly for Ariana...even if she won't remember it.

As I was brainstorming what to do, I realized that it's pretty simple to put together an eco-friendly basket for babies and children. The bonus is that I saved money in the process!


First Foods

One of the things I looked forward to while I was pregnant was when my baby would be ready to eat solid foods. Last summer, it seemed like that time was so far in the future. We started Ariana on foods shortly after she turned five months, and she's been an absolute champ so far. (Fingers crossed she continues being a champ!)

We of course want her to eat healthy and enjoy a variety of foods. It's important to me to make her baby food, and so far it's been incredibly easy and budget-friendly to do so.


Earth Month with My Little One

Y'all know Earth Month is one of my favorite times of year, from the springtime beauty to the many events being held to the focus on the environment and sustainability.

Check out my Earth Month goals from 2018 and Earth Month events in 2017. And let's reminisce on 2015, when I debuted Eco Cajun's updated look and layout, and 2018, when I made a special announcement!

This year is no different, even if I'm still in the mindset of " it really April already!?" (Nothing like trying to catch up and only be a little behind, rather than actually be prepared in advance, ha!)

With the change in my routine, I've also got a change in perspective. I got to thinking a couple weeks back about how I can involve my daughter in my Earth Month activities this year. And now I'm more excited than I've been in awhile.


Silky Hair without the Harmful Ingredients

I've written before about Maple Holistics and their organic, paraben- and pthalate-free shampoos. Back in 2017, they asked me to try the Tea Tree Oil shampoo and Argan Oil shampoo.

I found that the Argan Oil shampoo worked so well with my hair and have continued to use it ever since. So when Maple reached out again offering to let me try the Silk18 shampoo, I excitedly agreed.


Can You Recycle Breast Pumps?

I've talked before about how hand-me-down items have been one of the most helpful parts of having a baby. From clothes to toys and necessities, we've been grateful to take what other parents no longer need. However, there are some things that are best purchased and used new. Safety is the most important thing!

Last summer I wrote about the potential issues with secondhand car seats. Today I'm going in a different direction - breast pumps!


10 Years

10 years ago today, I published my very first post on this blog.

Read it here!

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

Although there have been a few hiatuses, I'm pretty proud that I've kept up with writing. Over the past 10 years, relationships have changed, residences have changed, jobs have changed and my writing style has certainly changed, but overall, the blog has been a constant through it.

It started out of my own journey toward being more eco-friendly and then wanting to share what I've learned in hopes of inspiring others to learn. My favorite thing is hearing someone say I've inspired them to do something, no matter how small it may be. All the small efforts add up to a huge impact. 

I still get excited when I see other people shopping with cloth bags or using a reusable water bottle. I internally cheer when I see people driving hybrid or electric vehicles and riding their bicycles. I get inspired by other bloggers and leaders in sustainability.

I'm grateful for all of the friends I've made and opportunities I've gotten through Eco Cajun, and I hope to keep growing over the next few years! I'm ready to work on new content, rather than recycle the same thoughts over and over. Do you have something you want me to write about? Leave a comment and let me know.

Thank you all for reading, and thank you even more for making choices to recycle more, waste less and conserve more. Here's to many more years!

Supporting a Greener Mardi Gras

It's the Thursday before Mardi Gras and the parades are underway in cities across South Louisiana. I love the revelry and spirit of Mardi Gras season, although in the past few years, it's hard to unsee the sheer amount of waste the holiday generates.

However, things seem to be turning around a little, thanks to some dedicated organizations and groups of volunteers.

My column in this week's Times of Acadiana takes a look at these groups and what they're doing to make Mardi Gras a little more sustainable.


Brand Spotlight | Something Borrowed Blooms

When I got married two years ago, I was determined to find an eco-friendly alternative for flowers, rather than spending a lot of money on bouquets that would only last a few days. I chose recycled wood flowers from a company that has since gone out of business. (My wedding bouquet, however, still sits in my office, looking beautiful as ever.)

These days, there are even more eco-friendly alternatives for your wedding bouquets - and these bouquets look so realistic, you'd never even know they are made of silk.

Kinsley bridal bouquet, photo via Something Borrowed Blooms

My Sustainability Goals for 2019

Last week I shared my top 2019 resolution of getting reorganized after having a baby and being on maternity leave. My new habits are getting stronger, although apparently my writing motivation is not!

However, I've got a few other goals I'd like to aim for this year, even if I don't fully achieve them.


How I'm Getting Organized (Again)

You know what one of the most cliche new year resolutions is? Getting organized. And yet, here I am, making that my top goal for the next few weeks.

I even started working on it before Christmas. I'm typically a pretty organized person, with to-do lists, an app to keep my tasks organized and reminders set up. (Of course I operate pretty much paperless these days!)

However, having a baby and being on maternity leave can throw any semblance of a routine out the window. Focusing on the baby was my top priority, but as I returned to work, I realized I needed to gather my scatterbrain and put everything back in order.

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