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Cosmetic Secrets of Ancient Cultures: Indonesia – Nicol Ambrosius

2 Dec

Have you read Eat, Pray, Love? Or did you take the easy way and just waited for the movie? Either way you’ve seen the beauty and spirituality of Indonesia. And that beauty is not coming out of the blue.

JAMU-up your life

No, Jamu is nothing to be afraid of. In fact, we all should crave for a little more of that ancient Indonesian tradition of natural health where medicinal herbs are used to treat every aspect of life. Leaves, roots, fruits, flowers and barks of various plants are used for treatments to rejuvenate and pamper the body. Basically, Jamu creates inner peace which results in outer beauty. (If you are interested in learning more about Jamu you should check out Susan-Jane Beers book “JAMU. The Ancient Indonesian Art of Herbal Healing” or watch this awesome video.)

If you are ready to jump in at the deep end and want to jamu-up your life, here is the information you need to pamper yourself like a Javanese royalty does:

But where’s the coconut?

Well, it should be in your hair. Rinse your hair with coconut milk instead of a commercial conditioner. This natural conditioner will leave your hair sooo soft and shiny.

It’s a wonder nut alright.

Candlenut (fyi: in Hawaii, candlenut is also known as Kukui) truly is a wonder nut. Candlenut oil is known for its remarkable skin care aids and its moisturizing properties as well as an awesome hair conditioner. The oil protects from harsh sunlight, drying winds and salt. So grab your bag and make a run to the next Whole Foods to get your own bottle of Kukui Nut Oil. Or if you want something a little more special here is your link to your own personal candlenut heaven: JUARA’s Candlenut Body Creme.

Turmeric Time

Turmeric plays an important role in the life of any Indonesian. It’s used in multiple ways: as food, as a medicine, as a beauty ingredient. Turmeric is also used by women during an ancient royal bridal ceremony called Lulur. The root is used within that ceremony to cleanse the body and give it a radiant glow.

Turmeric is known for its antioxidant properties and therefore widely used on acne prone skin. It does not only help fight damage from free radicals, but it also helps to reduce inflammation and evens out discoloration from old-break-outs.

If you want to get pampered like an Indonesian bride, a turmeric mask is your way to go. But be careful since Turmeric STAINS. And if I say stain I mean it. When using yellow turmeric your skin will stay yellow for a couple of days. A possible alternative is JUARA’s Turmeric Antioxidant Radiance Mask. This mask is a wet clay mask that exfoliates and purifies pores. There is a special complex of turmeric in it so no stains. I promise =)

Wow, while writing about all those exotic rituals I realized that I HAVE to go to Indonesia at some point. But I guess I’ll start with a Spa visit first. After all that’s the cheapest way…

Have you ever been to Indonesia?

Breast Cancer – What do I need to know? – Jill Sung

12 Oct

Breast Exam: Anatomy

It’s National Breast Cancer Awareness Month! And besides knowing that I need to do self exams and that JUARA is donating funds from sales for this important issue

Some Diagnosis Tips: Self Exam

If you’re 20 years old and above, it’s good to start self-examining now. The most common signs of breast cancer are below, however, we should keep in mind that not all lumps or changes mean one has breast cancer…these are just common signs to watch for – if found, go to your doctor. An easy self-exam video: Breast Cancer Self-Exam Video

  • a lump in the breast
  • abnormal thickening of the breast, or
  • a change in the shape, size, or color of the breast
  • less common but also signs
    • Dimpling or puckering of the skin
    • Swelling, redness or warmth that does not go away
    • Pain in one spot that does not vary with your monthly cycle
    • Pulling in of the nipple
    • Nipple discharge that starts suddenly and appears only in one breast
    • An itchy, sore or scaling area on one nipple
Should I  get a Mammogram?

The rules I’ve learned are that one should receive mammograms once a year at age 40 and beyond. But this past November 2009, the United States Preventive Services Task Force (and pay attention ladies, because this may affect insurance coverage) stated that women with an average chance of breast cancer should receive biennial mammograms between the age of 50 and 74. (If you have a greater chance because a family member had breast cancer or have clinical signs, etc. you should consult your doctor and discuss the best preventive practice.) For women between the age of 40 and 49, the USPSTF recommended against annual screenings because of the risk of radiation exposure, false-positive/negative results, overdiagnosis, pain during procedures, and anxiety, distress…Despite these rulings, many of the organizations that support breast cancer awareness are still evaluating the decision of when to start preventive mammogram screenings. So please keep in mind that you should, with the help of your physician, assess your risk for breast cancer and be preventive accordingly. (Interestingly, the USPSTF also recommended against breast self-exam…but the jury was out on self-exam by supporting organizations as well).

I think that’s it for now, we’ll talk more about the risks, etc. next time. How many of you out there do yearly self-exams? Why? Any tips?

Meet Vanessa, Indonesia’s JUARA Ambassador – Metta Murdaya

28 May

Meet Vanessa, who has been a JUARA fan and advocate in Indonesia and loves spreading the word. When I was just in Indonesia this last month, I took a few minutes with her to share why people across the world like it, especially from where our line is inspired from. Different cultures, different climates, different seasons – but it looks like we all have some things in common, ladies!

If you are or have friends who are from a different country, what skincare products or treatments do you/they like? Do share, we love learning new things!

PS – We have a FREE SHIPPING on ALL ORDERS Special this Memorial Day Weekend. Friday, May 28 through Monday, May 31, 2010. Happy Shopping at JUARA!

JUARA Mother’s Day Contest: WIN $50 FOR YOU AND YOUR MOM!

7 May

Entry deadline: Wed, May 12, 2010 – The week after Mother’s Day…

JUARA knows the important role mothers play in our lives. Tell us why your mom is the best, and you could win a $50 JUARA gift certificate for you AND your mom! Winners will be picked on the Friday AFTER Mother’s Day! (2 days after the deadline…)

Enter the contest by answering “Why My Mom is the Best Mom Ever!” at:

The winner’s answer will be posted on our website so the whole world can appreciate the special role mothers play in our lives!
Anyone can enter, so spread the word!


PS – There’s also a great Mother’s Day Special set featuring candlenut products AND a video preview of Yoshiko’s new baby girl Asami! Check that out here if you want a little sumethin’ sumthin’ special for yourself or your mother! View the set and video HERE.

Up in the Air and Behind the Brand – Metta Murdaya

19 Mar

I just came back from a trip to Indonesia, one of many I take every year. The stay there is the focal point of my trip, but I think getting there alone is a trip of its own. It’s a 24 flight EACH WAY from NY, I have to strategize on how to keep myself amused and when I sleep so I don’t walk out of the plane like a lost zombie. So, here are some key highlights of my frequent flights…

– I save about $40 watching at least 4 movies each way that I missed in the theatres and think “Oh, I’ll catch that on the plane for free.”  And then I do. Woohoo!

– I practice a little yoga in the hallway to keep me limber, to the amusement of the stewardesses. Note: This always challenges my balancing poses. Especially when there’s turbulence.

– I have threatened jet lag to keep me at bay by sleeping on and off to adjust to the time change. Futile are its efforts to get me, “We try her every time but she just won’t pass out at 2pm!”

– I sashay radiantly out of the plane each time, since I take a Travel-Size of the Tamarind Tea Hydrating Toner to keep my dry, recycled-air exposed skin refreshed and faboo. And faboo is good.

So – back to Indonesia.  I go back home to Jakarta and Bali to see family, friends, and of course, live, breathe, and research for JUARA. After all, it’s the ancient Indonesian herbal tradition and beauty rituals I grew up with that inspired me to create the line. I wish I could take everyone who asks “What’s it like over there,”  but that’s a little tough. Ok, I can do carry on luggage, so for all you JUARA fans 40lbs and under – you must be this small to ride this ride – jump on in, and we can watch the movies together.

For the rest of you over 40lbs, I give you this video. Enjoy!

(Do you have travel tips to make long flights easier? I’m always looking for suggestions!)

JAMU – JUARA’s Inspiration: #1 Intro

23 Feb

Hi, here’s a little less about JUARA and more about JAMU, the Indonesian herbal tradition from where JUARA was inspired. This will be the start of a series of videos covering a smattering of JAMU related topics – hope you enjoy a little history lesson in yummy little tidbits. Watch out, there’ll be a quiz at the end! Just kidding… Of course, if you do want to dig in deeper, there are more formal books and research materials from which I learned the information, so I’ll be more than happy to refer those to you too, but in the meantime, here’s to episode 1!

JUARA Deal of the Month!

3 Feb


People always ask us to recommend ‘packages’ for their skincare regimen or for gifting. So over time, we’ve come up with a bunch of ‘bundles of goodness,’ so to speak, and it makes for easy one-stop-shopping if you’re wanting skincare solutions or if you want to try something new – at a value price!

Check out our site for the JUARA Deal of the Month, aka JUARA Monthly Specials! They change every month, check back often and see what tgoodies the next month has to offer! (Btw – add the link as a favorite, since it’ll be the same URL month after month…)

You can always get products a la carte, that’s the beauty of JUARA; you can use our botanicals based products as a set (works wonders!) or mix and match with your fave products, but we thought we’d give you some options, and also a great deal. Enjoy!

The JUARA Girls,

Metta, Yoshiko, Jill & Tami