Friday, April 19, 2013

Why Should You Choose a Soy Candle from The Prismatic Peacock?

What is soy wax?

Soy wax is a natural vegetable wax made from the oil of soybeans.  After harvesting, the beans are cleaned, cracked, de-hulled, and rolled into flakes.  Then the oil is extracted from the flakes and hydrogenated.  This process converts some of the fatty acids in the oil from unsaturated to saturated.  The hydrogenation process dramatically alters the melting point of the oil, making it a solid at room temperature.

What are the benefits of using soy wax candles?

Soy wax is vegetable based, non-toxic, and is made from renewable resources.  It is biodegradeable and eco-friendly.  Soy wax contains no carcinogens and produces very little soot.  The soybeans used to make it are grown and produced in the United States, primarily in Illinois, Iowa, and Indiana, so using this wax helps to support American farmers.  Soy candles burn cleaner at a lower temperature and are consumable.  This means that you get to use the entire candle!  Soy candles hold scent well, release the fragrance slowly, and are very long-lasting.  A well-made soy candle lasts about twice as long as a parraffin candle of the same size.  Another benefit is that any spilled soy wax is easily cleaned up with a little soap and warm water.

What are phthalates and why should I avoid them?

Phthalates (pronounced "thah-lates"), or phthalate esters, are esters of phthalic acid and are mainly used as plasticizers to soften plastics and make them flexible.  However, they are also found in a wide variety of products from children's toys to electronics to household products and other items made of vinyl or PVC.  In fragrances and cosmetic products they are used to stabilize the fragrance, increase spreadability, and enhance absorption.  No conclusive human studies have been completed, but evidence is building linking phthalates to adverse health effects such as reproductive and developmental problems, respiratory impairment, and other harmful effects on organs.  Current studies are looking into the relationship between phthalates and asthma, timing of puberty, and cancer risks.  Currently, there are no labeling requirements in the United States for phthalates specifically.  If you would like to avoid using products containing phthalates, you need to contact the manufacturer directly.

Why should I choose a soy candle from The Prismatic Peacock?

The Prismatic Peacock uses only all natural Golden Brands 100% soy wax in all of our candles and melting tarts.  It is vegetable based, made from renewable resources, and is produced by American farmers.  This wax is non-toxic, contains no carcinogens, and is biodegradeable.  Our soy candles burn cleaner at a lower temperature and produce very little soot.  They are also consumable, so you get your money's worth and are able to enjoy the entire candle.  We also use only all cotton, lead-free wicks.  All of The Prismatic Peacock's fragrance oils are phthalate free.  Our suppliers package them in phthalate free, recyclable bottles.  They are manufactured in the United Sates, never undergo any animal testing, and are 100% concentrated.

All of The Prismatic Peacock's products are made by hand in small batches using high quality ingredients.  Our soy candles are the result of years of research and experimentation.  They are made by Owner/Artisan Jessica G. Croft in her kitchen in Cocoa, Florida and are truly a labor of love.  High quality, eco-friendly ingredients, brilliant colors, and aromatic fragrances combine with artisan knowledge and are infused with love to create a beautiful end result product.  When you choose a soy candle from The Prismatic Peacock, you can breathe easy knowing that you are making a good choice for your family, your home, and the environment.  The question becomes why would you not choose a soy candle from The Prismatic Peacock?!

Please visit our Etsy shop https://www.etsy.com/shop/theprismaticpeacock, website http://www.prismaticpeacock.com, or Facebook business page https://www.Facebook.com/ThePrismaticPeacock to shop online.  The Prismatic Peacock's product line currently includes soy candles and melting tarts, natural soaps, aroma bead sachets, air fresheners, and more.  Custom items are available upon request.     




Sunday, April 7, 2013

Using Color and Fragrance to Boost Your Mood

One of the main reasons I started my business was my love of color and fragrance.  Surrounding yourself with the colors and scents that make you feel good can work wonders for improving your mood and enhancing your overall sense of happiness.  Our olfactory receptors are directly connected to the limbic system, the most ancient and primitive part of the brain, which is thought to be the seat of emotion.  Scent-preferences are often a highly personal matter.  Scent is powerful and is deeply tied to memory.  Picking the right scent can enhance an already good mood, and it can calm other moods.  Scents can enhance relaxation, create romance, or revive you with energy.  While perceptions of color are somewhat subjective, there are some color effects that have universal meaning.  Colors in the red area of the color spectrum are known as warm colors and include red, orange and yellow.  These warm colors evoke emotions ranging from feelings of warmth and comfort to feelings of anger and hostility.  Colors on the blue side of the spectrum are known as cool colors and include blue, purple, and green.  These colors are often described as calm, but can also call to mind feelings of sadness or indifference.

The fact that colors affect our moods, emotions, and behavior, has been known to humankind from ancient times.  Although, the way a certain color affects someone's mentality is very individual, and one color can have different effects on different people.  Do you find that there is a particular color or shade that you are always drawn to?  Then perhaps you`ve experienced just a hint of how colors affect our emotions.  Chromotherapy is sometimes referred to as light therapy or colourology and is still used today as a holistic or alternative treatment.  Experiment with looking at different colors and choose the ones that make you feel good.  It is important to surround yourself with color that feels good to you!

Red - Red represents strength, ambition, and courage.  It is associated with power and high energy.  It can be used to promote alertness, speed, increase circulation, and to stimulate the body and mind.  It may help to promote confidence and is also an appetite stimulant.

Orange - Orange is a warm, joyful, inviting color that can be used to increase energy levels.  It can create feelings of happiness and socialbility, so it is a wonderful color to use in the gathering spaces of your home.

Yellow - Yellow is associated with optimism, brightness, and mental clarity.  It can be used to promote clear decision making and upbeat thinking. The color yellow may also be helpful for some in easing the symptoms of depression and encouraging brighter moods.

Green - Green is a very pleasing color with many positive qualities associated with it including renewal, balance, refreshment, and peace.  It can provide a calming influence and work as a stress reducer.

Blue - Blue is chosen by the majority of people as their favorite color.  It promotes rest, peace, and calm.  It can be effective to help ward off insomnia, promote relaxing sleep, and to treat pain.  It may also promote balance, imagination, and intuitive thinking.

Purple -  Purple or violet stimulates the problem solving areas in our brain.  It promotes creativity, intuition, and artistic ability.  It is also associated with royalty and communicates richness and sophistication.

Aromatherapy scents can trigger reactions within the body which relieve stress, enhance mental clarity and concentration, help us gain energy, create a sensual mood and setting, help you fall asleep at night, and even help you with pain management.  Many massage therapists and alternative medicine practictioners include aromatherapy in their treatments.  Popular scents for enhancing a calm mood include bergamot, sage, frankincense, lavender, patchouli, sandalwood, and ylang ylang.  Energize and refresh by picking fresh, citrus scents such as lemon, orange, grapefruit, tangerine, or lime.  Some good scents to pick for enhancing a romantic mood are jasmine, gardenia, rose, patchouli, and sandalwood.  Add to the warm and welcoming ambiance of your home by using spicy or bakery scents such as cinnamon, apples, nutmeg, brown sugar, and vanilla.

Scented candles are a wonderful way to experiment with different color and fragrance combinations.  It's an inexpensive way to try different options and determine which ones are the most appealing to you.  They can provide a pop of accent color and aroma to the rooms of your home and can be easily switched out seasonally or anytime you want to change the mood or ambiance.  Another benefit is the ability to combine colors and fragrances by using two or more candles that contain similar or complimentary fragrance notes.  A good example is lighting an apple cinnamon scented candle in your kitchen and a vanilla scented candle in your living room.  The combination is like hot apple pie a la mode.  Yum!

The Prismatic Peacock offers a wide variety of handcrafted soy candles and melting tarts to choose from.  All of our candles and tarts are made by hand in small batches with high quality, eco-friendly ingredients.  We use only all natural 100% soy wax.  This wax is non-toxic, vegetable based, made from renewable resources, and is produced by American farmers.  Soy wax provides a longer, cleaner burn time.  Soy candles melt completely and are consumable, so you are able to enjoy your entire candle.  The glass containers are completely reusable since the remnants of wax are so easily removed with soap and warm water after the life of your candle.  We also use only all cotton, lead-free wicks, and all of our concentrated fragrance oils are phthalate free.  When you choose a soy candle from The Prismatic Peacock, you can breathe easy knowing that you are making a healthier choice for the environment and for your home and family.  Please visit www.prismaticpeacock.com or www.etsy.com/shop/theprismaticpeacock to shop.


Friday, April 5, 2013

Introductions

Hello and welcome to The Prismatic Peacock's Show Your True Colors Blog! Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Jessica Croft. I am a wife, mommy, sister, daughter, friend, business woman, entrepreneur, animal lover, and the Owner/Artisan of The Prismatic Peacock. It still seems surreal to me that I am officially a full time artisan and business owner. Though I had always wanted to own my own business, I never would have had the courage to take that leap if my circumstances had not required it. Let me give you a little back story.

My husband, Brian, and I wanted to start a family. It took us two and a half years to conceive. That thing that people say to you about getting pregnant when you stop thinking about it and trying so hard actually happened for us. We were thrilled! At the time I was working as an administrative assistant and parts buyer at an industrial electronics company. Definitely not my dream job by a long shot, but it provided a steady paycheck and health insurance. After having our son, Brandon, a full month early due to pre-eclampsia, I took a full two weeks to recover and adjust to my new role as a mommy. When I called in to the office to see if there was anything I could help out with and work on from home I was informed that I had been replaced. Nice! No warning, no maternity leave, no paycheck, no health insurance, and no job to return to. Crap!

Fortunately, I was able to receive unemployment compensation to help us get by. I diligently looked for work, but there were not many job options in our area. The tough economy meant that any job I did find did not pay enough for me to be able to afford to work and put our infant son in full time daycare. I began brainstorming ideas of how I could earn money working from home. I had been making soy candles as gifts for friends and family for a few years, but really just considered it to be a hobby. I decided to do some checking around, and I discovered that it was pretty difficult to find natural 100% soy candles. After quite a bit of research and a ton of experimentation, I locked down what I considered to be the highest quality and most eco-friendly materials and processes. I gave it some thought and decided that if I loved and used my products then other people would too. I took a deep breath, had a glass of wine, and began the business licensing process. I was a mommy now, and my son was depending on me. If I couldn't find a job then I would make one for myself.

Taking that leap of faith and starting a business was not an easy decision. What can I say? Motherhood gives you incredible strength and courage! There is an overwhelming need to protect and provide for your offspring. What I had viewed as an impossible situation turned out to be the most amazing blessing. Being laid off allowed me to be at home with my son every day and to watch him grow and change. It forced me to think outside the box and trust my gut and intuition. It afforded me the opportunity to become an entrepreneur, tap into my creativity, and utilize my business management education. The Prismatic Peacock officially took flight in October 2011, and I have not looked back. I have never worked harder in my life, but I have also never been happier! I am surrounded by color and fragrance every day. I am able to spend time with our son (now three) and pick him up from preschool every day. We eat dinner together as a family every night. The long hours and hard work that I put in are rewarded when I receive testimonials from happy customers.

I am extremely grateful for the love, support, and encouragement of my husband, family, and friends. I am proud of the goals I have achieved to this point, and I look forward to the future opportunities that lie ahead for The Prismatic Peacock. I hope that you will follow along on my journey as I spread my wings in an attempt to coast onward and upward as I chase my dreams. Though I'm sure that I will flounder along the way, I will attempt to personify the regal peacock. Here are some words of wisdom. Like a peacock, your beauty is multiplied when you spread your wings and show the world your stuff. Don't be afraid to be who you are - each peacock feather is flawed and imperfect, but collectively they create something of great beauty. Your flaws are what make YOU perfect! Show your true colors!

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