Saturday, December 28, 2013

New Year! - New Stylists!

  Help us ring in 2014 by stopping in to meet our new stylists!  During the month of January, enjoy 20% off your first visit with Tara or Destinee.  These talented, young stylists are excited to meet you and are looking to grow their clientele.  

     *Please mention this post when booking - offer good the month of January only*

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Merry Christmas

         Tis the's the time of year to look back and reflect on how blessed we are. I'm proud to call this group of ladies my family away from home! They are talented, caring and they make me laugh on a daily basis. I look forward to seeing them as do many of our guests. I can only pray that others are as lucky as I am and are able to work with their friends! Merry Christmas to my Pure Essence Family!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A Green Holiday

        We dream of a white holiday season here in the upper Midwest.  We hope for snow covered yards, icicles hanging from the eaves, and strands of lights decorating our neighborhood. Santa’s chair is set up at our local mall and my children have been thumbing through catalogs to prepare their wish list letter to Mr. Claus.  Grocery store shelves are lined with opportunities to support the local food bank, and other stores ask for different donations to support a charitable cause.  At one store I was asked to buy a toy for a military family in need.  It’s safe to say the holiday season is fast approaching. 
It’s that time of year again when the air gets a little colder and the days become shorter, but our hearts grow warmer and more generous.  People can adopt a family in the community and deliver Christmas.  We help each other shovel our sidewalks and drive after the fresh snowfall.  With all the generosity and giving back we give to others and our society, it’s time to add the Earth to our list.  Even if there are not specific gifts we can wrap up and place under a tree with Mother Nature’s name on them, there are simple things we can go the will make our holiday traditions less taxing on the earth.  This paper will give ideas you can implement into your holiday season.
                  When you are out shopping this holiday season consider giving responsibly.  When buy household applicances or electronic items look for one with the ENERGY STAR rating and The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a list of ideas. The EPA reports, “The typical household spend more the $2,200 a year on energy bills…over a lifetime of ENERGY STAR products, a household can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 120,000lbs and same more than $10,000 in energy costs” (  So if a television, DVD player, stereo or other electronic items are on your list, look for the ENERGY STAR label to point you to the most efficient product models.  Also keep in mind when purchasing electronics or toys that require batteries, consider going the rechargeable route.  Rechargeable batteries reduce the amount of potentially harmful materials thrown away and can save money in the long run, especially if you add the battery charger as well. 
                  If these gifts surpass your budget, there are other gifts that can keep you on track to being green this holiday shopping season.  There are suggestions all over the internet but The Nature Conservancy ask its Facebook followers for tips. “Instead of giving a gift of a material item- provide a service for your friends/fam/loved ones like cooking dinner. Have a holiday ‘Green’ party where everything is recyclable, burn candles instead of lights, etc. – Lalanya B.” (Ganderson). Homemade gifts are a great way to show off your talents and abilities while remaining conscious to the environment.  Some example include making jams or wines from fruits and vegetables from your garden, making different holiday treats such as; fudge, peanut brittle, or cookies.  If you want to take your talents out of the kitchen you could learn to knit scarves and hats or paint some ornaments.  Other holiday gift ideas could include a potted plant or a donation to a favorite charity in the name of your honoree.
                  One of my favorite ideas is to purchase tickets to a local event or theater.  The purchase increases local revenue.  An evening out with friends or family while supporting your local economy seems like a perfect gift idea.  Not to mention gift wrapping tickets can have less of an environmental effect. 
                  When giving your gift this season, here are some simple tips you can do to make your gift ‘green’ friendly.  Try using a gift bag. Gift bags can be reused.  Even the tissue paper can be recycled for the next gift. Have that newspaper collecting in piles?  Newspaper, particularly the comic section can be used as gift wrap, especially for those gifts to children.  One idea I especially thought was appealing to the eye, was using scarp pieces of fabric to wrap up your holiday gift. 
                  Now that we have our gifts and they are wrapped with green friendly material, we need a tree to place it under. Your Christmas tree can be one way to help give back to our planet this holiday season.  According the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “about 33 million trees are sold in the U.S. every year” (   Compared to artificial trees, real Christmas trees are a renewable resource.  Treecycle Programs use recycled trees for mulch, erosion protection, habitat creation and shoreline stabilization.  The possibilities don’t end there, so check with your local community to find new ways to use treecycling for private projects. If you are not interested in trudging through the snow covered fields to find that perfect real tree, consider buying a potted plant or tree.  Potted trees can be planted outside when the holiday season is over. 
Decorating the tree or your house for the season can increase your energy toll on the environment.  Once upon a time Christmas decorations were homemade and was a great opportunity to spend quality time with your family and friends.  This holiday season try decorating your home or tree with a traditional twist.  Marye comments on The Nature Conservancy site, “we dehydrate various fruits like apples, oranges, and pears in our oven. We hang them on our tree with raffia along with popcorn and cranberries. After Christmas we hang all of it on the trees outside for the birds. The kids love it and the house smells so good!” (Parker).
Holiday lights strung on houses can be beautiful but problematic when trying to conserve energy.  A few ideas that don’t eliminate your lighting decorations, upgrade to LED lights and keep them unplugged and unlit during the day light hours. WPTZ News Channel 5 said, “LED bulbs use up to 90 percent less energy than regular bulbs, and they last up to 100 times as long.”  The News station also recommended, “If you still have traditional light strings, keep in mind that blinking lights use less energy than a steady glow” (WPTZ News Channel5).
With the lights twinkling and the air filled with Christmas aroma, it’s time for that Holiday party.  Sarah Hauck gives some great tips when it comes to keeping your party green this holiday season. Tips like using the internet for your invite instead of paper, make homemade decorations like popcorn and cranberry strung garland or homemade wreaths from old books and newspapers.  She suggests shopping local or going organic with your food and beverage selections.  An label recycling and trash bins clearly to avoid confusion from your guests. (Hauck)  Celebrating with friends and family is the true meaning of the Holiday Season.  Be conscious how your holiday party can be eco-friendly without costing you extra money.
The Holidays are a time of generosity and great family fun.  Holiday traditions bring people together and have been passed down throughout generations.  It is important that we do all we can in ensure our planet will be here for our future generations to carry on our Holiday Traditions.  Make it a tradition now to give responsibly, save energy, reduce waste and shop locally.  Most important, make it part of your tradition to be kind to our earth.  Have a safe and happy GREEN Holiday Season. 
By: Tara Smith

Thursday, November 21, 2013


     Do material possessions make us happy and grateful?  Perhaps momentarily.  However, those things which provide deep and lasting happiness and gratitude are the things which money cannot buy: our families, our jobs, good friends, our health, our abilities and the love we receive from those we surround ourselves with.  Unfortunately, these are some the things we allow ourselves to take for granted.
     On Thanksgiving morning, we invite you to take a moment to realize how thankful you are for the many things you have been blessed with.  Display an attitude of gratitude.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Healthy Recipe

                    Refrigerator Bran Muffin Batter

This nourishing mix will keep in the refrigerator six weeks, making breakfast easier!  Spoon out enough to make as many muffins as needed.  Bake @ 400 degrees for 20 mins.  Serve hot or cold…ENJOY!

6 cups wheat bran
1 3/4 cups honey
5 cups flour (2 white / 3 whole wheat)
   * 2 cups oatmeal can be substituted for 1 cup flour
5 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
1 cup oil
1 quart buttermilk

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Holiday Open House 2013

     It's that time of year again!!!  We're excited to invite you all to our annual Holiday Open House /Customer Appreciation event on Thursday, Nov. 21st 2013 from 3:00 - 7:00pm.   All guests will enjoy complimentary services, double Pure Privilege Points, hourly drawings, 10 - 30% off all AVEDA products, refreshments and holiday cheer!  We're looking forward to sharing this night with you and can't wait for you to see all of our limited edition Holiday Gift Sets!

Thursday, October 31, 2013


                No beauty school dropouts in this group!  
        Happy Halloween from all of us at Pure Essence.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


     There are numerous benefits of drinking water, from keeping healthy and hydrated to clearing up acne. You may already be getting some of these benefits without even knowing it. Water contains many valuable minerals and nutrients that your body needs to function properly. Drinking water before bedtime is one of the best ways to help your body store those nutrients and minerals you need to stay healthy and strong.

Hydrating Benefits
Having a glass of water before you go to bed helps your body replenish the fluids it loses throughout the day from normal activity. Since your body is mostly water, you need to keep it hydrated in order for it to work properly. Because you are not working as hard while you sleep, your body doesn’t need to excrete as many fluids. When you provide it with water before you to go bed, it simply refills its necessary levels.
Calorie-Burning Benefits
Water is a natural calorie-burner. You may have heard that sipping ice water is a good way to burn calories and help you lose weight. Although this isn’t necessarily true for everyone, it has a large amount of truth behind it. When you drink cold water, your body needs to work double time to warm up, increasing the rate your metabolism burns up calories. if you drink water before you go to bed, your body will begin to work extra hard to warm up, increasing your metabolism. Because you aren’t taking in any extra calories, it will start to burn up the excess calories you already have.
Sleep-Promoting Benefits
You are naturally balancing your body’s vitamins, nutrients and minerals when you drink water, replenishing all that it burns up and keeping you functioning correctly. By drinking water before bed, your hormones, energy levels, muscles and joints become balanced. This helps you relax and leaves you feeling rejuvenated in the morning. While you sleep, water has the time to reach every part of your body and replenish it fully. in time, you will be able to sleep more soundly and consistently by drinking water before bed, leaving your muscles, vitamins and minerals in harmony.
Toxin-Clearing Benefits
One of the best benefits of drinking water is that it acts as a natural cleanser. Your body attracts many toxins, from food, the environment and other elements. Cleaning it out consistently will help keep it healthy and functioning well. Drinking water before you go to bed will provide your body with the supplies (water) and the time to clear out your system of unwanted toxins. Your digestive tract, your muscles and even your skin benefits from the cleansing process. You will feel better, lose weight faster and have more energy during the day.
Along with all of the normal health benefits of drinking water, simply having a glass before you go to bed each night can have a big and positive effect on your lifestyle. You will find that you sleep better, are more alert during the day, digest food, lose weight easier and feel better all over.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Bras for the Cause 2013 - Help Save 2nd Base

     We had a wonderful Saturday afternoon yesterday as we raised money for the Martha Siekman Cancer Care Fund which helps members of our community who are battling cancer.  I'm always overwhelmed with the outpouring of generosity that I see our community extend.  It's humbling to hear others stories and to be reminded of just how blessed I am.
     I would like to extend a HUGE thank you to everyone who contributed yesterday!  Wendy Crawford gave an inspiring account of her battle with breast cancer.  Her message really hit home with me...GET CHECKED!  Be aware of your body and know when things change.  It's so important for all of us to be on top of our own health and wellness.  She is a strong positive women and I wish her nothing but good things for the future, she deserves that.  Also, thank you to Kelly Bauman.  This was the second year that she generously donated all the concessions for the day.  Not only was the food VERY tasty, but the presentation was beautiful!
     Also thank you to Mark Mitchell (our auctioneer), Andrea Wallace of Core Commitment LLC, Tara Smith, Destinee Hoffman, Courtney Bauman and our amazing staff who make events like this possible.  We were able to raise over $3000 this year!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Ten Things I Want To Tell Teenage Girls | Kate Conner

1. If you choose to wear shirts that show off your boobs, you will attract boys. To be more specific, you will attract the kind of boys that like to look down girls’ shirts. If you want to date a guy who likes to look at other girls’ boobs and chase skirts, then great job; keep it up. If you don’t want to date a guy who ogles at the breasts of other women, then maybe you should stop offering your own breasts up for the ogling. All attention is not equal. You think you want attention, but you don’t. You want respect. All attention is not equal.
2. Don’t go to the tanning bed. You’ll thank me when you go to your high school reunion and you look like you’ve been airbrushed and then photoshopped compared to the tanning bed train wrecks formerly known as classmates – well, at least next to the ones that haven’t died from skin cancer.
3. When you talk about your friends “anonymously” on Facebook, we know exactly who you’re talking about. People are smarter than you think they are. Stop posting passive-aggressive statuses about the myriad of ways your friends disappoint you.
4. Newsflash: the number of times you say “I hate drama” is a pretty good indicator of how much you love drama. Non-dramatic people don’t feel the need to discuss all the drama they didn’t start and aren’t involved in.
5. “Follow your heart” is probably the worst advice ever. 
6. Never let a man make you feel weak or inferior because you are an emotional being. Emotion is good; it is nothing to be ashamed of. Emotion makes us better – so long as it remains in it’s proper place: subject to truth and reason.
7. Smoking is not cool.
8. Stop saying things like, “I don’t care what anyone thinks about me.” First of all, that’s not true. And second of all, if it is true, you need a perspective shift. Your reputation matters – greatly. You should care what people think of you.
9. Don’t play coy or stupid or helpless to get attention. Don’t pretend something is too heavy so that a boy will carry it for you. Don’t play dumb to stroke someone’s ego. Don’t bat your eyelashes in exchange for attention and expect to be taken seriously, ever. You can’t have it both ways. Either you show the world that you have a brain and passions and skills, or you don’t. There are no damsels in distress managing corporations, running countries, or managing households. The minute you start batting eyelashes, eyelashes is all you’ve got.
10. You are beautiful. You are enough. The world we live in is twisted and broken and for your entire life you will be subjected to all kinds of lies that tell you that you are not enough. You are not thin enough. You are not tan enough. You are not smooth, soft, shiny, firm, tight, fit, silky, blonde, hairless enough. Your teeth are not white enough. Your legs are not long enough. Your clothes are not stylish enough. You are not educated enough. You don’t have enough experience. You are not creative enough.
There is a beauty industry, a fashion industry, a television industry, (and most unfortunately) a pornography industry: and all of these have unique ways of communicating to bright young women: you are not beautiful, sexy, smart or valuable enough.
You must have the clarity and common sense to know that none of that is true. None of it.
You were created for a purpose, exactly so. You have innate value. You are loved more than you could ever comprehend; it is mind-boggling how much you are adored. There has never been, and there will never be another you. Therefore, you have unique thoughts to offer the world. They are only yours, and we all lose out if you are too fearful to share them.
You are beautiful. You are valuable. You are enough. 

Friday, October 4, 2013

Simplify & De-Stress

We live in a fast paced world where everything is at our fingertips.  Many in our day feel overworked, over-programmed, overwhelmed and out of control.  As a result, we feel increased STRESS in our lives.  Stress can be a good thing.  Stress and tension on a kite string is what keeps it sailing through the air.  Adrenaline produced by stressful conditions is critical if we are running from a bear.  But the STRESS most people complain about comes when we feel "pushed to the edge - out of control."  When we find ourselves reacting to people or situations rather than responding; or when simple situations become mountains rather than mole hills.
As we think to simplify and de-stress our lives, we need to MAKE NOT FIND time to be still and listen.  Take the time to go for a walk and enjoy the beauty of the fall leaves.  Take a few deep breaths and let the autumn breeze help you fell gratitude in your heart.
When you are still, wonderful peace and individual enlightenment will follow.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Mom And Me

     There were a few eyebrows raised when I said I wanted to go into business with my mother, but I couldn't think of anyone I could respect or trust more.  My mom is truly my best friend, confidant and mentor.  If only I could be as sweet and kind...I'm working on it!               
     In January of 2012 my mother, Ann, and I purchased Pure Essence Salon & Spa after working there for  six years together.  We're big dreamers and we love the industry.  Who wouldn't be tickled pink to spend the day visiting with friends and laughing while exploring the bounds of creativity.  We get to make people feel and look their best from the inside out, and I haven't met anyone yet who doesn't look forward to a salon/spa visit. We are blessed!
     We also have an amazing staff.  We're small in number but looking to grow and expand.  The future is bright!  We hope you will come and visit us soon!