Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

May 4, 2015

cosmetics

Lowdown on Cosmetic Expiration Dates

Did you know that cosmetics expire? While you’re spring-cleaning your home, grab your makeup bag and give it a little revamp. Since cosmetics have a shelf life, it’s important to keep track of the date that you opened the cosmetic since the product likely sat on the shelf for a short period before you purchased it. Apply a small sticker with the date to the bottom of the product so you can keep track of this easily.

*If there is an expiration date on the item, make sure you discard the product once this date has been reached regardless of these suggestions. Once the item is open, you can use these guidelines to make sure you haven’t past their life expectancy.

General period after opening is:

  • Perfumes – up to 3 years
  • Powders (blush, powder eye shadow) – 1 to 3 years
  • Foundation in a jar or a cream powder – 1 to 3 years
  • Lipstick and lip gloss – 1 year
  • Pencil Liners (Eye and Lip) – about 1 year
  • Solid eyeliner and eyebrow pencil – from 6 to 8 months
  • Liquid eyeliner – from 3 to 4 months
  • Mascara – 3-6 months
  • Bronzer – 6 months

Note that natural and organic cosmetics do not include preservatives. These products can be stored up to 6 months after opening.

If you notice any changes in the product, such as consistency, color, or smell, discard the product immediately. Don’t try and “revive” old products as this can affect the safety of the item. While some changes in consistency just mean that the product will not perform at its best, some changes can result in skin irritations or infections. Once you have tossed out any expired products, turn your makeup bag inside out and toss it in the washing machine with your dark clothing. Allow it to air dry and then put everything back inside, wiping the outside of each item with a rag to remove any powder or dust.

Your makeup bag is now officially spring-cleaned… Now give us a call at (707) 759-3896, and let us tackle the rest of the house!

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Homemade Beauty and Body Gifts for Girlfriends

March 14, 2015

Whether you’re hosting a party and are looking for some unique favor ideas or you just want to gift your girlfriends with a homemade and practical gift, these ideas for natural bath and body goodies will surely give them an excuse to indulge during bathtime. Don’t hesitate, try cooking up some of these DIY recipes for giving to your posse:

 

Homemade Bubble Bath

Source Julie Blanner

2/3rd cup liquid glycerin

1-cup clear unscented dish soap

10 drops of a favorite essential oil

Dried Lavender or Lavender essential oil

4 Tablespoons water

2 tsp. salt

Gently mix ingredients together. Find a pretty vintage bottle or glass container and pour all ingredients inside. Optional: add whole lavender stems to keep them solid during a soak.

 

Lavender Mint Sugar Scrub

Source Julie Blanner

¼ cup carrier oil (almond, grapeseed or olive)

½ cup of sugar

10 drops of spearmint essential oil

5 lavender heads

Mix all ingredients together. Find a cute clear jar with a screw top lid and add mix to the jar. Tie a ribbon or decorative tag around the jar lid for an accent.

 

Honey Sugar Lip Scrub

Source Hello Natural

2 teaspoons sugar (raw or regular will do)

1-teaspoon honey

1 teaspoon almond oil

Note: add a sprinkle of cinnamon or cayenne for a lip plumping effect

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Find a small jar with a twist off cap and place ingredients inside. Spread over lips and gently slough off dry and dead skin.

Coconut Body Butter

Source Hello Natural

½ cup shea butter

¼ cup coconut oil

Over a broiler or low heat, melt shea butter and coconut oil together. Refrigerate for one hour. Beat newly chilled mixture for five minutes and transfer body butter to a jar with a lid.

7 Ways to Streamline Your Laundry Routine

March 6, 2015

Whether your 5-year-old has a penchant for dressing up in multiple outfits a day or your beloved is a serial pajama rotator, there are ways to more efficiently and effectively manage all those clothing overflows. Here are our top seven tips for dealing with a serious load (pardon the pun) of laundry:

  1. Wash Day-Rather than wash clothing every single day, let it grow and reserve one day for washing all the socks, play clothes and towels that have piled up. On two other days, designate time for folding and hanging up clothes.
  2. Universal Detergent-Unless someone in your household has super sensitive skin, it’s fine to use the same detergent for adult and children clothing. Feel free to pre-treat spots with the same laundry stain remover as well.
  3. Kids vs. Adults-Separate clothing into kids and adult clothing for washing, it will be faster and easier to organize and sort. It also helps to have kid and adult laundry piles for putting away.
  4. Wet Shake-If you shake out wet clothing after a round in the washing machine to catch last minute stains and prevent wrinkles.
  5. Sorter Wonder-Splurge on a laundry sorter to manage darks, whites and colors. This sorter will restore your sanity.
  6. Forget the Hampers-Kids’ laundry tends to accumulate by leaps and bounds and by the time it’s dumped from the hamper into the laundry room, the pile is huge. Rather than let it collect, have laundry bins that kids can use directly situated in the laundry room, and then it will be easier to see the amount of laundry that is ready and waiting to be done.

Brighten It Up-There are many great resources and blogs for finding more tips on streamlining your laundry routine but remember to keep the laundry room inviting and the laundry war will be an easier fight. Try photographs or fun decals, decor or wall art.

5 Housekeeping Goals and Super Easy Ways to Achieve Them

February 28, 2015

If every year you start out January with good intentions of cleaning, sorting and donating all your old and unwanted items, but then find yourself losing momentum in March, you’re not alone! Many people adhere to resolutions only for a short time. It’s often a better strategy to set realistic and firm goals in order to keep your resolutions. Here are five common housekeeping goals and ways to keep them this year:

 

1.) Trimming Your Cleaning Budget-There are many ways to stretch your dollars and cents, the best thing to do is to find ways to not spend a lot on products and tools. There are countless recipes for creating homemade cleaning solutions available for free online. Another smart strategy? Look for giveaways, coupons and freebies online. Check here for information on current contests and promotions that are available for entering. Prizes include money, grocery cash and vacations.

 

2.) Speedier Cleaning-Crank up your favorite Beyoncé song or rock out to Maroon 5. Cleaning can be made more speedy and enjoyable if you add music to the mix. Other top tips? Clean your least favorite room first, keep cleaning supplies grouped together and don’t let messes pile up. Daily dishes are a lot easier to manage than a week’s worth of plates and utensils.

 

3.) Clutter Cutbacks-Hoarding is the enemy of a clean home. If you are a clutter bug and love your papers, collectibles and books, you’re more likely to live in a messy dwelling. If you can reduce your mountains of miscellaneous, you’ll have more cleaning energy and space for new things. Remember that stuff begets stuff.

 

4.) Managing Fledgling Motivation-If you can’t seem to get motivated to keep your house clean, have a standing dinner party-hosting gig. No one wants guests to see a messy and mismanaged home. If you’ve got a regular social date with friends at your house, you’ll be forced to keep things neat and tidy.

5.) Enlist Everyone

A clean house involves contributions from all members. Whether you have a weekly family meeting or chore charts, it’s important to make each member of the house feel valuable and accountable. Teaching everyone responsibility will ensure that a home stays clean. When all the family members are pitching in, a home will be effortless to keep clean.

Oops! 5 Things You’re Forgetting but Need to Clean

February 15, 2015

Cleaning the kitchen is a given. Scrubbing toilets is a frequent pastime. Wiping floors and countertops is a foregone conclusion. But how often do you remember to clean those other items in your life that you use daily? Here are 5 items that need your cleaning attention stat!

 

1.) Winter Wardrobe Staples

Gloves, scarves and winter jackets all need to be cleaned just like other clothing items. Using these items on a regular basis allows them to accumulate dirt, dead skin and all sorts of bad bacteria. Also, pets can harbor pathogens, which can find their way onto clothing outerwear. It’s important to launder winter garments and wipe leather gloves and jackets with cleansing cloths.

 

2.) Grimy Gym Bags

Frequently toted to a place where floors are covered in sweat, workout bags are the perfect place for nasty microbes to find a home. Sweat covered clothing and dirty socks are transported along with sweaty headsets and tennis shoes. If your go-to gym tote is machine washable, throw that sucker in the washing machine for a mean clean. If the bag is not laundry-friendly, wipe it down with disinfecting cloths and sprinkle in some baking soda to absorb odors.

 

3.) Brooms and Mops

Cleaning tools need to be scrub a dub dubbed just as much as any other item. Dust, dirt and even spider webs can find a happy home inside the broom bristles. It’s important to regularly vacuum a broom and run it under warm water or better yet, soak in a bath of bleach, soap and water. A mop can be soaked in warm, soapy water, while a string mop can be thrown in the washing machine on delicate.

 

4.) Electronic Devices

A TV remote can be one of the most dirt-laden items in a house. And cellphones are oftentimes the most crud crusted in all the land. Cleaning electronics is easy with alcohol wipes or microfiber cleansing pads. For remotes, try a regular swipe and wipe with disinfecting cleansing cloths.

 

5.) Makeup Brushes

Almost every woman owns some cosmetic product or beautifying foundation, mascara or blush. Moreover, women apply their cosmetics with makeup brushes that are bountiful bacteria keepers. For cleaning these tools, wash them with shampoo until the water runs clear or try special makeup brush cleaners that are often comprised of alcohol or other bacteria busting ingredients.

Awesome Apps to Revamp your Resolution

February 5, 2015

Alright, guys.  It’s officially February.  Remember that promise you made to yourself at midnight as we rolled into 2015?  Some of us have powered through the first 30-day hurdle, but all too many of us have fallen off the proverbial wagon.

No matter the resolution, it’s not too late to get back on track with the help of a little technology!  Here are 5 resolutions and the perfect apps to keep them!

 

Resolution: Get Healthy

My Fitness Pal – MFP tracks both your diet and exercise.  By answering a few questions about your age, activity level, and overall goal, the app calculates attainable healthy short-term goals which are much more efficient.

Lose It – This app customizes a weight loss plan to your needs.  It also has the benefit of peer support.  Achieving our healthy living goals are always easier when you have someone in your corner who is going through it with you.

 

Water Logged – Drinking an adequate amount of water is so important when it comes to getting healthy.  Waterlogged is an app where you can log the amount of water that you drink, and show you how much more you need to reach your daily goal.

 

Resolution 2: Quit Smoking

LIVESTRONG MyQuit Coach – This app gives you support whether you choose to quit cold-turkey, or are looking for more of a step-down approach that decreases your nicotine intake slowly over time.

Get Rich or Die Smoking –This app calculates the amount you save daily by not smoking, and shows you what you can now afford since you haven’t spent your money on cigarettes.  It also unlocks short term as well as long-term health benefits of quitting.  It really is a fun way to look at the perks of kicking the habit!

 

Resolution 3: Finance and Budget Improvement

Mint.com – This financial tracking app syncs with your bank account automatically and allows you to easily track your budget and spending.  Seeing it all laid out for you, you may be surprised to see exactly where your money goes.

 

Credit Karma – These days our identity is directly tied to a 3 digit number.  This number decides how much we pay in interest on a home or auto loan, and can even affect whether or not we get that new job we’ve been wanting.  Credit Karma is a free way for you to keep track of your credit score, as well as keeping an eye out for identity thieves.

 

Resolution 4: Increase Productivity

Any.DO – Whether it’s a task you need completed today or tomorrow, or it’s simply a life goal that you would like completed one day in the future, Any.DO is going to help you keep track of what needs to be done using task management and list making.

 

Cozi – The great thing about Cozi is its ability to keep an entire family on track.  Everyone sets up their own username and you can assign tasks, make notes, and add items to a family calendar that you can keep track of via computer, tablet, or mobile phone.

 

Resolution 5: Time Management

RescueTime – How much time do you actually spend on Facebook every day?  Let’s find out!  This app is monitors browser productivity and sends you a weekly email report to show you how you spent most of your time.  Great way to stay accountable for where your time is really spent.

 

Focus Booster – This app is based on the Pomodoro method, which theorizes that mental agility can be improved by breaking tasks up into intervals.  Once you press start on the app, it sets a timer for 25 minutes of “focus time.”  After this, it gives you 5 minutes of “break time” so that your brain has a second to rest, and then it’s back to the grind for another 25 minutes.  The app even has an optional second tick that will help you use your time wisely by staying on track.

Know another app that might help someone get out of a Resolution Rut?  Leave us a comment below!

How to Make a Small Place Look Bigger

January 27, 2015

Whether you’re moving into a small home or you’ve been living in a small space for a while, there are many quick and easy ideas for making your cozy space feel homey and huge. If you feel cramped or cornered in your current living arrangement, there’s a plethora of design ideas and inspiration for turning your mini-home into a major crib.

Toss Today
Most people have too much stuff; too many children’s toys, too many books and too many kitchen accessories, trinkets and clothes. The first step to making a space feel large and in charge is to clear the clutter by donating dated goods or storing precious items.

High Five
Even the tiniest spaces have vertical room, which can be utilized with the right furniture. High reaching furniture serves double-duty by making a space feel less crowded but also creates more available room for storage. Try and find the right modular shelving units, bookcases and tall multi-door cabinets to store and house keepsakes and housewares.

Mirror, Mirror
Many design tricks will save a small space from feeling oompa loompa friendly. Try a large art painting on the wall to make a space feel richer and heartier, place mirrors strategically to visually trick the eye and use wallpaper on the paint or ceiling to create the illusion of more depth and height.

Uptown Funk
When devising the design and décor elements for a living area, the best strategy is to use multi-purpose items, which clear clutter and close off a space. Try a coffee table that doubles as a desk or an open ottoman, which hides, blankets, books and toys.

Mean Clean
Nothing makes a home feel more organized and larger than when all the gunk and grime is gone. Do a serious clean or hire the professionals like here at Solano Maids! We specialize in taking a messy home from sad to stunning!
Phone: 707-759-3896

Still not sure how to create a space with that open and airy feel?
Check out this board on Pinterest for a compilation of the top organization bloggers on the site. Organizing Board.

DECK THE HALLS

October 20, 2014

November officially begins the holiday season. Soon we will see Christmas decorations in abundance. Preparing for the holidays, arriving family or traveling to meet family can take time away from the things we would normally take care of around our homes. As a house cleaning service here in Solano County, our goal is to simplify the lives of our clients.

We can take away the mundane day to day tasks, leaving you with time to focus on your family. If you need house cleaning, off-site laundry or just a bit of organization to help you during this busy time of year. Solano Maids is here to assist. We service Dixon, Vacaville, Fairfield, Vallejo, Benicia and yes, even Rio Vista.

Laundry Services

September 23, 2014

Did you know that Solano Maids offers Laundry Services to our existing clients? This can be performed one of three ways:

1. As a courtesy, while the Teams are cleaning in your home, they will wash, dry and fold as many loads of laundry that can be done, during the time they are cleaning. There is no additional charge for this service, as long as it does not impact the time they are regularly in your home cleaning.

2. We can send one maid to clean your home and while there cleaning, the maid will complete up to 3 loads of laundry (wash, dry and fold). There is no additional charge for this service, as long as it does not impact the time they are regularly in your home.

3. Laundry Pick Up: Our office can pick up – up to 3 loads of laundry (sheets, towels, jeans, shirts, etc). and wash, dry, fold and return to your home within 48 hours. There is a minimum charge as well as mileage for this service.

We offer more than just house cleaning. Let us be your One Stop Shop. Stay tuned as each week we will feature other services that we offer for our existing house cleaning clients. 