World Mental Health Day: Some self-care practices

Today is World Mental Health Day, a day dedicated to bringing awareness to various mental health issues and the many resources that are available to those who need support. As we reflect on the importance of this day and the many ways we can care for ourselves, we decided to gather up a list of ways that you can both care for and check in with yourself. Whether you need a bubble bath, a good run to clear your head, or someone else to talk things through, know that self care is no selfish act. You matter and how you care for yourself matters. 

Relax, Soak, & Unwind

Geranium Patchouili Bath+Body oil with other bath essentials

After a long day, there’s nothing like coming home to unwind and soak yourself in a hot and steamy bath. To add some healing aromatics and moisture, include some drops of our hydrating Bath+Body oil. It is formulated with pure organic oils that restore and permeate the skin. The beauty of our oil is that its uses extend beyond the bath and can be used in a multitude of ways (check out our blog post on the many uses of our oil!). So grab a book, light some candles, put on your favorite playlist, or simply enjoy some peace and quiet while floating away. 

Get Moving

Getting your body moving and heart rate pumping has consistently proven to be a great stress-reliever. Endorphins are those wonderful hormones that release during a workout that leave you with that feel-good high. Essentially, they exchange pain for pleasure in the body. So get creative and try a new workout class such as barre, boxing, or yoga. Even if you’re lacking the time or resources, there are plenty of free exercise tutorials available online that range anywhere from 20-60 minutes. You’re doing both your mind and body a favor by going out and getting active!

Meditation

Meditating arm

This healing practice has increasingly become more popular and accessible for all. Meditation has many great benefits such as increasing focus, improving the quality of one’s sleep, reducing stress and anxiety, and so much more. Don’t know where to begin? Headspace is a useful tool that makes meditation simple. The app offers hundreds of themed, guided meditations that can be included into any schedule. Beginning the day with the practice of mindfulness is useful for reducing distractions and increasing positivity. Meditation can be crafted into anyone’s schedule, and the best part is that it’s absolutely free!

Seek Therapy

It is totally okay to need care beyond what we can offer for ourselves. Seeking therapy is a great option for many if you can sneak it into your budget or time. You can get started by simply searching on https://www.findatherapist.com/ to find a therapist in your area that caters to your specific needs. We recognize that the option of therapy might not be realistic for everyone. If it is not practical for you, consider sharing with a trusted confidant, friend, or family member. There’s great healing that happens in community- we are all in this together :). 

Our Favorite Apple Recipes to Celebrate the Season! Plus a peek at a new fall scent!

As we officially embark upon the Autumn season, we would be absolutely foolish to overlook this famous fall fruit. Due to its peak ripeness and versatility, apples serve as a staple during this time of year. Not to mention, fall is the best time to take advantage of the fruit’s bounty and perhaps embark on the ever-famous challenge of eating “an apple-a-day”. To showcase its many uses, here are some delicious apple recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

Breakfast Granola Apple Crisp

Apple Granola Crisp

Apple crisps are not strictly meant to be enjoyed for dessert, but actually can be eaten for breakfast as well! This breakfast apple granola crisp is the perfect spin on your classic granola and can totally be made in advance for those hectic mornings. Simply pair it with your favorite yogurt and serve it warmed or chilled.

Herb Apple Gruyere Scones

Herb Apple Gruyere Scones

Apples and Gruyere cheese offer such a stark contrast that pair together to make melodious, savory goodness. These Herb Apple Gruyere scones are the perfect addition to any fall soup- tomato, pumpkin, or butternut squash.

Grilled Flatbreads with Apple, Bacon, and Onion

Grilled Flatbread with Apple, Bacon, and Onion

Fruit on pizza? Not to be confused with the highly-debated pineapple on pizza. Apples with savory bacon and sweet caramelized onions make for great toppings. This grilled flatbread incorporates the warming herbs of thyme, rosemary, and sage for a delicious fall-inspired take on a classic pizza. 

Mom’s Apple Cake

Apple Cake

To top the day off, enjoy a slice of this moist and sweet apple goodness. This Apple Cake, featured on our “A Few Festive Ways to Celebrate Fall” blog post, pairs well with your favorite ice cream or can be simply enjoyed on its own.

Etta+Billie’s Fall Scents

Our fall scented-goodies officially launch on October 4th! It would not be a fall scent launch without something apple-spiced. We know that cinnamon laced cider and bourbon are the perfect match. With our Spiked Cider Soap, you’ll feel like you’re curled up in front of a crackling fire with a warm beverage every time you shower.

Warm apple cider with cinnamon and a touch of bourbon are the inspiration for our Spiked Cider Soap!

New Product Alert – Natural Deodorant!

It is an exciting week for Etta+Billie as we launch our most sought after product- deodorant! Carried in all four of our signature scents, we are proud to share these these deliciously scented, all natural deodorants actually work. Our creamy formula is packaged with biodegradable materials and there is absolutely no plastic! What makes this product so special is its enriching ingredients that work together to moisturize, soothe, and keep you smelling fresh. Here are a few of the ingredients that make our deodorants so amazing!

Pyramid of natural deodorants

Baking Soda

Commonly referred to as sodium bicarbonate, this kitchen staple is an integral ingredient in neutralizing body odor. It works to balance and regulate the body’s pH balance while also absorbing odor- the main purpose of any deodorant! 

Baking soda

Shea Butter

Shea butter has historically been used for combating dry skin and hair. It is rich in fatty acids that nourish the skin and aid in collagen production. It is also naturally rich in vitamins A, E, and F.  

Shea butter

“It smells great, is a natural alternative, makes my armpits softer than they have ever been!”- Kate W.

Cassava

This tropical root plays such a vital role in our deodorants. It does an exceptional job at absorbing sweat while also brightening and smoothing the skin. It’s like magic!

“Love the scent & consistency. Very creamy, light texture. Doesn’t leave marks on clothing and doesn’t cause irritation when applied.” – Alli K.

Coconut Oil

There is a reason this oil is adored by many and used in a multitude of ways. Coconut oil quickly absorbs into the skin and is rich in Vitamin E. It’s antimicrobial properties protect the skin from any unwanted bacteria. It also restores, repairs, and enriches the skin with moisture! 

Coconut oil in measuring cup

“I love the scent and the texture, and I love that it WORKS” – Chelsey C.

Are you ready to try our most anticipated product? Visit our website to get your hands on our naturally nourishing deodorant. Your armpits will thank you!

Person using Etta+Billie deodorant

A Few Festive Ways to Celebrate Fall

With fall just around the corner, it’s time we gear up for the wonderful season marked by pumpkin-spice, cozy knits, and foods that make you feel all warm inside! Here are some fun fall festivities and recipes that ought to get you ready for the seasonal transition:

Orange pumpkin on wooden floor

Pumpkin Patches

Visiting a local pumpkin patch is the best way to kick-off your fall season. These iconic autumn squashes are on display in all of their glory- ranging in colors from white, yellow, and orange in a variety of shapes and sizes. Grab some of the gourds for carving or simply to adorn your home, but don’t throw those seeds away! They can be roasted up into something crunchy and flavorful to munch on. Spice up your recipe with some of these creative takes on the classic roasted pumpkin seed.

Reinvented: Pumpkin Seeds 5 Ways

An assortment of flavored pumpkin seeds

Apple Picking

Apples reach their prime in the fall, so what better time to gather up family and friends to enjoy the day picking them? You can slice them up for a pie, turn them into fritters, or dip them in ooey gooey caramel. Either way, apple picking can prove itself to be quite a rewarding pursuit. Make it a day worth while by packing a picnic to enjoy on the grounds in the fresh crisp air. 

Mom’s Apple Cake

Apple Cake

Baking & Cooking Galore

With the weather becoming cooler and night beginning earlier, it is a great time to flock indoors and whip up some of your favorite fall goodies with warm and invigorating spices. One way to infuse the delicious fragrances of the fall into your space is by brewing up a batch of apple cider. The beauty is, you can leave it on the stove or keep it simmering in the crockpot. If you’re really looking for some fun, turn your cider into spiked goodness by pouring in your favorite liquor. 

Easy Hot Spiked Mulled Apple Cider

Spiked apple cider



The Story Behind the Scent: Etta + Billie’s Grapefruit Cardamom

In our new series “Story Behind the Scent”, Alana Rivera, owner and soap maven of Etta+ Billie, will take us through a history behind our scented concoctions. Here, she will recall the foods, memories, and people that have helped bring them to life. This week, we are talking all things Grapefruit Cardamom!

Etta + Billie Grapefruit Cardamom Body Scrub and Body Lotion

Tell us about the inspiration behind this scent: 

Grapefruit Cardamom was a melding of two flavors that I loved into something absolutely blissful.

My love of grapefruit began as a child. Every summer, I spent time at my Grandma Etta’s in Southern California. She would often serve me grapefruit in the morning and I came to love the way she would cut each section for me so I could scoop the tangy flesh into a bowl. Then, I would squeeze any remaining pulp to create “Grapefruit soup”. I was so hooked on this method that I would often refuse to eat grapefruit cut any other way. 

My obsession with cardamom didn’t start until I was much older. My first cardamom experience was in Indian cooking and then in a variety of pastries. I loved how the flavor is both herbaceous and spicy. With fresh green notes as well as a warm coziness. Once I discovered it, I couldn’t get enough.

Etta + Billie Grapefruit Cardamom Hand + Body Wash

Using my cooking experience and food loves as inspiration, I combined these two scents together. They work in harmony with each other to create something sweet, tart, spicy, and fresh. This combination is one of my very first and still one of my favorites today.

What products does Etta+Billie carry with this scent?

Our delicious Grapefruit Cardamom scent is available in Body Lotion, Body Scrub, Room + Body Spray, Hand + Body Wash, and our Skin Balm.

Grapefruit Cardamom Skin Balm

Were there any recipes/goodies that contributed to the creation of this scent?

Nothing specific, but I do love seeing this combination in recipes. I’ve seen grapefruit cardamom tarts, scones, and all manner of sweet things. I’m always drawn to this combination in cocktail form. 

You can find grapefruit cardamom cocktail recipes all over the internet and here are a few of my favs:

Grapefruit Cardamom Gin Fizz refreshing gin cocktail!

Grapefruit Cardamom Gin Fizz

The Remedy: a delicious whiskey based recipe.

Etta + Billie's Grapefruit Cardamom Rose Cooler Recipe

Etta + Billie’s Grapefruit Cardamom Rose Cooler Recipe on You Tube

Where to Go? What to Eat? in San Francisco, CA with Perch

This week we asked Perch owner Zoel Fages a bit about his shop and some local tips when visiting San Francisco’s Glen Park neighborhood.

Perch owner Zoel Fages.

Tell us a bit about your shop:

Glen Park gift shop Perch's window display.

“Perch is a collection of everything I love: new, vintage and international. I had always thought in the back of my mind that I would love to open a shop.

After 20 years in my career at Gap, I was bored, and at the same time a shop in our new neighborhood was moving out and the landlord was looking for a new tenant. The stars aligned and we signed a lease just days before the market crashed.”

What do you love most about your area and how long have you been located there?

Gorgeous bag options at Perch SF.

“Perch has been in Glen Park for over 11 years. It is the only neighborhood I would consider having a shop. We are a small neighborhood that feels more like a village than neighborhood. I wanted a shop located in a place where I could get to know the community and be a part of it. If Glen Park had a pharmacy, there would be no reason to leave. It has everything you need.”

Is your area known for anything in particular?

Apothecary shelf at Glen Park gift shop Perch.

“Glen Park is primarily known for Glen Park Canyon and the Bart stop. It is a part of San Francisco that most people do not even know exists. I certainly did not until I moved to the nearby neighborhood of Sunnyside.”

Describe your favorite places for food/drink in your area:

Holding a warm cup of coffee.

Almost any type of food can be found in Glen Park. The highlights are:

Gialina:  the best thin crust pizza in town, seriously! They also have great salads, pasta, and meat dishes. A must if visiting Glen Park. 

Higher Ground:  A crepe place that has been in the ‘hood over 30 years. The owner also owns a sweet Italian spot, Manzoni. He works both places every day – I don’t know how he does it.

Le P’tit Laurant: A small corner French bistro with classic French cuisine.

La Cornetta: My favorite taqueria! They offer the staples, but always delicious.

A Few Good Fried Chicken Recipes for National Fried Chicken Day

We’ve pulled together a few different recipes for you to test out just in time for National Fried Chicken Day.

Nashville Hot Chicken

Classic Fried Chicken

No fried chicken taste test would be complete without a traditional option like this one from The Spruce Eats.

Extra Crispy Fried Chicken

Apparently there is one ingredient that you can add to make your fried chicken super crispy. Read more about it and other fried chicken tips at The Stay at Home Chef.

Fried chicken with a touch of spice from Front Porch.

Nashville Hot Chicken

This addictive spicy chicken is a must if you ever make a trip to Nashville. But if you don’t have plans to head to Nashville anytime soon, you can make your own with this recipe from Saveur.

Our Favorite Side Dishes for the Fourth of July!

It’s that time of year that we celebrate the U-S-of-A with a big get-together, sunshine, cold beers, and a massive BBQ feast. I’ve polled the E+B Crew and some of our Maker pals to find out what some of their favorite side dishes are to accompany their hot dogs/burgers/ribs/tofu/chicken for Fourth of July!

Grilled Corn

Grilled Corn on the Cob - the perfect, and very classic, 4th of July side dish.
image from Serious Eats

Sonia, Etta + Billie’s Production Manager, loves a classic Grilled Corn on the Cob. Check out a few techniques for the perfect butter worthy corn-on-the-cob over at Serious Eats.

Pasta Salad

Mediterranean Orzo Salad is a refreshing take on the classic pasta salad option.
image from Salt and Lavender

I love Jasmine’s (E+B’s Studio Assistant) pick for her favorite side – a pasta salad. This Mediterranean Orzo Salad is the perfect blend of crunchy, salty, savory, and 100% satisfying. Plus, you can put most of it together ahead of time and mix in the tomatoes, cucumber, and fresh herbs right before serving.

Potato Salad

Chimichurri Potato Salad
image from Salt & Lavender

I love potato salad but I’m not a mayo fan (except in deviled eggs, egg salad, and tuna – I know, that makes no sense) so I’m always drawn to tangy, herb-laced recipes like this Chimichurri Potato Salad from Salt & Lavender. Yum.

Coleslaw

Creamy tangy coleslaw is always a great BBQ side.
image from Inspired Taste

Our super talented maker pal, Angie Chua creator of Bobo Design Studio, thinks coleslaw is necessary at any grilled-meat based food celebration because it cuts the “richness and heaviness of BBQ”. Agreed, lady! Check out this recipe from Inspired Taste.

Cornbread

image from The Guardian

Sharon Zimmerman, the uber-talented metalsmith, wants a cheesy cornbread to accompany her BBQ favorites (chips and guacamole too!). I’m dying to try this recipe from Yotam Ottolenghi.

Ok, I hope this has given you a few ideas. Now I want to know, what’s your favorite 4th of July side dish?

Negroni Week: My Favorite Cocktail Recipes and an Exclusive Etta + Billie Product!

image from Imbibe

When I think of ordering a Negroni, my mind is usually telling me it’s time to sit and relax. Take a load off, savor the moment, which is hard to do with a 1-year old baby boy!
The Negroni is the perfect cocktail for these kinds of moods. They’re a bit bitter, strong, and subtly sweet. For one our favorite weeks at Etta + Billie, Negroni Week, I wanted to share some of the most interesting ways you can enjoy this iconic cocktail, where to get them, and also share some exciting E+B news!

Classic Negroni: Junior. Mission, SF

Exterior of Junior in the Mission District of San Francisco

Located just a hop and a skip from my house, Junior is my favorite local spot to sit n’ think for a while with a good, herbaceous Negroni. The interior is beautiful, the colors are contemplative, which makes for the perfect environment. Here are the ingredients for the Classic recipe:

Interior of Junior, located in the Mission District of San Francisco. A full display of the bar.
image from EaterSF

Classic Negroni
1 oz. Gin (my favorite is St. George’s!)
1 oz. Sweet Vermouth
1 oz. Campari
Tools: mixing glass, barspoon, strainer
Glass: Rocks Glass
Garnish: Orange Peel
Combine all ingredients and stir with ice. Strain into an ice-filled glass and garnish.

Kingston Negroni: Outerlands, Outer Sunset, SF

Interior of Outerlands, a restaurant in the Outer Sunset District of San Francisco.
image from EaterSF

If you take the N-line outbound to the beach, through layers of fog, you’ll find this wonderful gem of a restaurant called Outerlands. Although they’re known for many things (like their amazing grilled cheese!), the bartenders introduced me to the Kingston Negroni, and now it’s my favorite place to get it. Using Jamaican rum instead of gin, I was pleasantly surprised by the rich, spicy combination. Definitely the kind of drink you want to have with a friend, savoring all the flavors of your Negroni and sharing deep conversation. Here are the ingredients for the Kingston Negroni recipe:

A Kingston Negroni on the counter of Outerlands in midday


Kingston Negroni
1 oz. Jamaican rum (my favorite is Smith and Cross!)
1 oz. sweet vermouth
1 oz Campari
Tools: mixing glass, barspoon, strainer
Glass: rocks
Garnish: orange peel
Combine all ingredients and stir with ice. Strain into an ice-filled glass and garnish.

Mezcal Negroni: Hello Stranger, Uptown Oakland

Interior of Oakland's Hello Stranger in the Uptown District. a Large L-shaped bar with cool lighting and plenty of space to move around
image from EaterSF

Across the bridge, Hello Stranger is my favorite Uptown bar for a Negroni. On the weekends this place gets busy, but during the week you can always count on a mellow scene with great music. Honestly, what brought me to this place was word of their original creation: the Hell’s Belles Negroni. With earthy mezcal, herbaceous rosemary (they even torch the rosemary sprig!) this version surprised me in the best way. It’s an experience you must check out if you’re in Oakland. Here are the ingredients for the
Mezcal Negroni:

The Hell's Belles mezcal negroni sitting on the bar at Hello Stranger in Uptown Oakland
image from EaterSF

Hell’s Belles
1 ¼ oz. mezcal (Hello Stranger uses Wahaka espadín)
1 ½ oz. Cocchi Americano Rosa
½ oz. Campari
Tools: barspoon, strainer
Glass: Old Fashioned
Garnish: grapefruit twist, rosemary sprig
Stir all the ingredients with ice to chill, then strain into an ice-filled glass. Twist a piece of grapefruit peel over the drink, then pierce the twist with a rosemary sprig and use as garnish. (Optional: Use a kitchen torch to flame the rosemary sprig until it smokes; extinguish the flame before serving.)

New Etta + Billie product: Negroni Soap!

Etta + Billie Negroni Soap displayed on a table with other bar tools, as well as a hand holding a negroni cocktail

Just in time for Negroni Week, I made a small batch of soap inspired by one of my favorite classic cocktails, the Negroni! It’s the perfect combination of sweet and bitter and a little boozy. Visit our Instagram page for more Negroni Week updates, as well as our website to purchase your favorite new cocktail soap.