Chin Up!

This blog is all about Balanced Beauty.

Which means looking and feeling good on the inside and out!

One of the easiest ways to look and feel good is to be aware of your posture.

How we stand says a lot about us...but it also begins to AGE us!

Consider how your hold your phone, sit in the car and at your desk.

You might even be guilty of it as you read this!

Bring your chin up!  



It is so simple, but so effective!

Not only will it keep you from having neck pain and slouching shoulders,

It prevents double chins that form over time and poor posture as we age.

Alison Burmeister


Balanced Beauty



"The Palisades Magazine" June/July Issue: Self Realization Fellowship, Lake Shrine Discover Inner Bliss in a Magical Oasis Within Reach

When asked to write this article for The Palisades Magazine I was delighted.  Self Realization Fellowship, Lake Shrine has a special place in my heart. Not only did I walk the lake the day I went into labor with our daughter, is it where she was Christened and the reason why we live in Pacific Palisades!

I'm excited for you to read the article (see below), but first a little back story on why Self Realization saved my life...

Sounds dramatic, "saved my life", but in some ways, it did. Long story short, my boyfriend and I were living in the Beverly Glen area in a house that he was "flipping". So on any given day we may have a bathroom, but no running water and on another day, no kitchen or bathroom. To say I wasn't mentally and emotionally prepared for this experience would be an understatement. One day, however, I pulled on my big girl pants, shuffled through the dust and out to the back yard. There was a crew of laborers ripping apart the landscape around the pool. "I'm going to help them!" I told myself...and I did. The thing is I did not realize the plants they were pulling were poison oak! I had the worst breakout of poison oak I'd ever seen!

That night I tried to sleep in the back bedroom (which I use the term "bedroom" loosely, as it consisted of a mattress and a few cardboard boxes for night stands) but my skin was crawling and so were my nerves!! It is difficult for me to admit this, but in this moment I had thoughts of ending it all, I was that uncomfortable and stressed out.  I had endured a lot on the Beverly Hills Camping experience, but this would send me over the edge.

Tired and miserable from a sleepless night, my now Husband (yes, I married the guy!) told me he was going to take me somewhere to calm my nerves and take a break from the house. We headed out of the hills, down onto Sunset Boulevard and West to Self Realization Fellowship. As we drove along Sunset Boulevard, we passed by a new construction that had just opened.  On our way back from SRF, we stopped in on the property, called the owner and took a place in it the very next day! We have lived in Pacific Palisades ever since and when we do go camping is in a campground...with no poison oak.

~Alison Burmeister



Camino De La Cumbre, 2000


Now for the article... 

I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Thanks to my husband, Mitch for all the beautiful photos and to Brother Ritananda and Sujon Datta for you time and insight!




Balance Beauty for the Winter Months

Late Fall early Winter signifies the Vata Season.  Vata, the Ayurvedic Dosha of air and ether is known for it's dry and unsettled qualities.  Just like nature, our bodies change with the seasons.  That is why in the winter we often experience chapped lips and rough skin and find our bodies and our minds to be restless.  

Three simple ways to soothe the dryness of the Winter Season and settle the restlesness of the active holiday months are what I like to call, the 3 M's, Massage, Movement and Mindfulness.  Together, they are simple enough to achienve every day and effective enough to keep you warm,cozy and comforatable all winter long. 


A Nourishing Red Lip for the Holiday Season!

Nothing says, "I am ready to celebrate." like a bold red lip!  Only often times we find that lipstick can dry our lips, especially in the crisp winter months.  It is important to find a product that not only has the perfect color, but also the perfect protection for potentially dry chapped lips.


Vapour cosmetics are changing the way we do beauty.  Using healing botanicals and natural mineral pigments, Vapour crafts gorgeous color blends in concentrated, moisturizing products bursting with antioxidant activity.

For the perfect red lip pairing of color and moisture, try Vapour LUX Organic Lip Conditioner followed by Siren Coquette.  Together they will seal in moisture and provide the perfect holiday pucker!



Stay Cool In The Summer Heat With A Bath??

In the hot Summer months, when it comes to the end of the day, most of us think cool showers before we consider a warm bath.  The days of Summer tend to be more active in nature and our schedules are filled with stimulating events.  Without realizing it, these days of constant activity and excitement also aggravate our systems and throw our constitution out of balance.  One of the best ways to calm the "Fire of Summer" is to slow down and relax...treat yourself to calmer, soothing activities...which brings me back to the bath...more specifically an Ayurvedic bath designed to balance the fire in our bodies.  We'll get to that in just a moment.  First, let's start with the basics. 


From a Balanced Beauty standpoint, taking a bath is a key element of self care.  We all deserve a little luxury in our lives to feel good about ourselves, relax our bodies and calm our restless minds.  There is no doubt that taking a bath has a multitude of health benefits such as improving our blood circulation, loosening tight muscles and helping to gain more restful sleep.  But what about in Summer, when the temperatures are hot and our bodies need cooling?
Ayurveda, one of the most ancients healing systems from India, breaks down individuals into three doshas (or physical constitutions) that relate to the seasons in nature.  Everybody has all three, just in different combinations.  The three doshas are Vata=Air, Kapha=Water and Pitta=Fire.  These three doshas also relate to seasons in nature, Vata=Winter, Kapha=Spring and Pitta=Summer.  With every season Ayurveda recommends we vary the use of different products, practices and food to naturally balance our bodies constitution.  


As Pitta represents Fire and Summer, this dosha when out of balance results in mental, emotional and physical aggravation.  Skin irritations such as eczema, cold sores and rosacea as well as digestive issues and stomach upset are very common results of an irritated Pitta constitution.  We all have Pitta in our systems, some of us more than others.  (To discover your individual constitution, consult an Ayurvedic practitioner.)  The summer heat intensifies Pitta and cooling treatments such as the Surya Spa Pitta Cooling Bath Soak with Rose Petals and Neem Leaves, helps to calm emotions, quench the fire that an aggravating day can bring and restore serenity. 
Every Ayurvedic Pitta Bath Soak from Surya Spa provides the luxury of a healing Ayurvedic treatment in the comfort of your own home. Without making the water too hot, the bath soak is not only a "treat", but a "treatment".  The Pitta bath soak includes natural epsom salts, organic sea salts and mixed Ayurvedic whole herbs, rose petals and neem leaves, to soothe and restore.   The cooling principle of neem, combined with its capacity to support healthy blood, helps to balance pitta.  The other ingredient, rose, associated with romance, balances pitta by soothing the "fire" that governs emotions and their effect on the heart.  So at the risk of sounding "mushy", you know the tingly, butterfly feeling you get when in love?   The Surya Spa Pitta Bath Soak is like being handed a dozen roses.  You'll not only feel light on your feet, soothed and nourished, but you might find yourself visualizing sweet dreams of the heart as well.

To enjoy an Ayurvedic Pitta Bath Soak and/or discover the other varieties of bath soaks they offer, visit their website.
Stay Cool All Summer Long, With A Bath!
Alison Burmeiser
Balanced Beauty