Hey There- and Welcome to the Garden!

I’m so glad you’ve come to this neck of the woods! Whether it’s flowers or face masks, exercise or good eats; there’s no better way to find beauty, than by going from Garden to Gorgeous!

My name is Alicen, and I am a class of 2020 graduate from the University of Mary Washington. I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in journalism with a focus in music, and for the most part music has my heart. However, in the four years I spent living in college dorms, a new field of study grew in my heart; sustainability.

Living in a dorm- especially living in a dorm with a cat- having plants and growing my own food were’t really options, and it also wasn’t really an option to cut down on plastic waste when many meals were purchased on campus in to-go containers (gotta love unavoidable dining plans). On a college budget, sustainable skincare products were also hard to come by without breaking the bank. So my junior year I began making my own skincare products out of miscellaneous kitchen products; oatmeal face masks, rice hair rinses, and left-over coffee grounds body scrubs. It’s amazing what you can make with leftovers and discount Aldi goods. But, this simply wasn’t enough.

It was one thing to purchase huge, cheap containers of oatmeal to glob onto my face, and pull coffee grounds out of the machine after my morning cup to throw in a jar with some coconut oil, but I wanted to go further. I wanted to grow my own ingredients, and know where my purchased ingredients were sourced from. I wanted to have my hands on the production and collecting of ingredients. With some ingredients this was obviously unreasonable (I cannot grow coconuts for oil in Virginia’s climate, and I have no clue where to even begin making oil out of a coconut. Same goes for growing coffee, except I do know how to make a damn good cup of coffee). However, there was plenty I could do in my own backyard once I graduated, and I could research my butt off to learn about how the oils, vinegars, and other products I purchased journeyed from their habitat to my hands.

Through plenty of trial and error (and many lovely, patient friends and family who tried my homemade products), I have figured out recipes and sustainability tips that actually work, and work long term. On this blog you’ll find a lot of that trial and error accompanied by the solution to many “Pinterest hacks” that turned out to be Pinterest flops. I’ve tried a lot of them so you don’t have to (you’re welcome!).

Aside from the many sustainable product recipes and skincare tips you’ll find here, I also have affinities for fitness, healthy foods, and other sustainable products, so those will pop-up here as well. I am personally gluten and soy-free, and almost all of my friends are vegan, so heathy foods (and the occasional dessert alternative) are a must. We could go all day talking about taking good care of your skin, but skincare is only half the battle when it comes to having healthy, fresh skin. What you do with your body and what you nourish your body with are just as important, and there are so many ways to do all of this while being eco-conscious and giving mother earth some love.

Thanks for coming on down and checking out Garden to Gorgeous!

For questions, inquiries, and comments you can contact me at: contact@garden-to-gorgeous.com