• Taking care of your appearance can help boosting your confidence and also the love for yourself and your body. Sure, to eat healthy and do some type of workout is most important to stay healthy, but sometimes we want to give ourselves and our looks a bit of extra love and care. There is definitely nothing wrong with that! Here are my favorite holistic beauty routines that I do regularly to feel (and look) my best.


    1. COFFEE SCRUB 
    I love coffee, and I love a good coffee scrub! You can either make one yourself or buy one online or in a health store. If you make your own you can use ground coffee beans, coconut oil and a bit of sea salt. Coffee scrub exfoliates your skin and removes dead skin cells and brings out healthy skin underneath. The antioxidants in the coffee will make your skin glow! It also has many other benefits: the caffeine improves blood circulation, can reduce cellulite, puffiness under eyes and redness in the skin. 

    2. ESSENTIAL OILS
    Essential oils are compounds extracted from plants. Every essential oil has it’s own unique smell and benefits. You can either inhale them or put them on your skin. Not all essential oils should be in direct contact with your skin though, so make sure to ask in the store when you buy them or do a quick research about the specific essential oil you’re interested in. The benefits of essential oils are endless and they can help with so many things! Both physically and mentally. A few examples of what it can help you with: dry skin, pain relief, oily skin, stress relief, better focus, boost your immune system, better sleep etc. 


    3. SUPER FOOD POWDER BLENDS
    If you want to get clear skin, first thing I would recommend is to cut out refined sugar, processed foods and dairy from your diet and drink loads of water. But I would also recommend to give your body that extra boost from the inside for a healthy glowing skin. I like to drink a super food powder blend in the morning. Either a green one or red one. You can add it into a smoothie if you struggle a bit with the taste or simply just stir it in a glass of water and maybe add some freshly squeezed lemon. It’s a great way to start your day with a boost of nutrients! 
    My favorite powder blends comes from SUPER U and are called ”Clean Greens immunity blend”, and ”Berry Beauty antioxidant blend”. Both of them have so many health benefits. 


    4. DRY BRUSH
    I dry brush my skin a few times a week. I just love how smooth it makes my skin. Both face and my whole body. I use a small and softer brush for the face and a bigger one for the body. I brush with a light to medium pressure (no need to brush like crazy with a strong pressure!). Apart from making the skin very smooth it’s also said to boost blood circulation, stimulate the lymphatic system which will help your body to detoxify itself, reduce cellulite (yes it’s true!) and improve your immune system. I like to do it in the morning before showering because it can also increase your energy. 


    5. ALOE VERA 
    Fresh Aloe vera, yes – the gel inside the actual plant, has many great benefits and antibacterial properties. It’s soothing and moisturizing for skin, so if you have a wound or if your skin is red from being in the sun too long, apply some fresh aloe vera gel, directly from the leaf! It can also help against break outs. You can also eat the gel to improve your digestive health. Why not putting a piece of gel in your smoothie in the morning! I have a plant at home, but I know you can also buy single pieces of the leaf in specific health or fruit stores. I would recommend having your own plant because it’s cheaper and it’s also very pretty to look at. They grow so fast!

    6. EPSOM SALT BATH
    If you workout a lot, if you have pain or aches in your body -this is perfect for you! A hot bath is calming and the Epsom salt will relax your muscles. The salt breaks down to sulphate and magnesium and your body will absorb it through your skin. I think everyone should take a Epsom salt bath every now and then, since it’s great against stress, soreness and stiffness. Add a few drops of lavender oil in your bath for a lovely fragrance and improved relaxation. 

    7. ROSE WATER FOR FACE
    I spray rose water on my face every day. It’s refreshing and smells amazing. It contains antioxidants that is great for your skin, has anti-aging properties, soothing against skin irritation and redness, and it can enhance your mood. It can also help against head aches and sore throat. 

    8. CRYSTAL ROLLER
    This is a massage tool for your face made out of crystals! The most common ones are made of jade, rose quartz or amethyst. It reduces puffiness and inflammation in your skin, reduces wrinkles and eliminates toxins. It’s also great for giving your skin better texture and smaller pores. Roll upwards for a lifting result. And remember that the different crystals has different benefits so choose the one that suits you the most. 


    9. COCONUT OIL 
    If your skin is dry or needs some extra glow, or if you want it to feel super smooth, use coconut oil! It’s really incredible on the body but also great to put in your hair. Apply it to dry ends and the lengths of your hair and leave it in for a couple of hours. It will make your hair super soft and add moisturizer and shine!  Plus it smells so good. I also use it when I tan, it naturally has SPF 4 and gives you such a nice even tan. Always use an organic coconut oil. I would not use it for my face though, since it can clog pores.

    10. HYDRATE 
    Last but not least, as you’ve probably heard many times before: drink a lot of water! It really makes such a difference on my skin. It just looks healthier and has more natural glow. So many people are dehydrated without even knowing. I recently bought a copper water bottle that according to Ayurveda had lot’s of health benefits like improving your digestive system, prevents aging and keeps skin healthy and glowing.

  • Loving yourself. What an important and essential thing to do. Yet, so many of us get lost and distracted by all norms and rules in society of how we should be, look like, feel like, and how we should act. How much we should work, train and eat. So many rules and ”goals” that are simply impossible for each and every one of us to reach. Striving to become this or that or ”perfect” only creates pressure and anxiety. I’m not saying you shouldn’t aim high and work for your goals. But should you really listen to other peoples opinions of what is the perfect life, the perfect body, the perfect job, the perfect…etc.

    Let me tell you one thing. You are already enough. Just as you are, right now. You are enough. Everything you need, your courage, motivation, love, strength and compassion: everything you need is already within you. And sometimes we do get distracted and disconnected, and that’s okey, we can always find our way back.

    6 ways to loving yourself more
    1.FOCUS ON GETTING TO KNOW AND CONNECT TO YOUR TRUE SELF

    Always remember that you are enough just as you are, always. Nobody is perfect and has the perfect life. Everyone has their own struggles that they don’t post all over Instagram. Always remember that. Ask yourself who you are without describing your looks or your work title: it doesn’t define who you truly are. Get to know yourself better by focusing on what you like to do and what makes you truly happy. What makes you smile, what are you day dreaming about on a rainy day, what can you think off that gives you that extra push of motivation? What books do you like to read and what sports makes you feel energized? When do you feel the most creative? Think of things that you love doing and do more of that.

    2.LEARN HOW TO SAY NO

    I know, it can be fun to be busy and be running around the city with a matcha latte in one hand and answering work emails with the other while you are on your way to meeting one of four. It can be fun to go straight from work to meet up with your friends for a drink before that evening shopping event. It can be fun to squeeze in a yoga class together with that cute guy who smiled at you earlier this morning before an important lunch meeting with your boss. I know, it can all be a lot of fun! But, there are also times where you actually don’t really feel like doing something on your free time, but you end up doing it anyways. Maybe because you are afraid to miss something fun or you are worried that your friends or other people will think you are boring. Remember: you are NOT boring! We simply can’t say yes to everything that happens all the time, or we are going to lose the fun part of it and only feel how we get more and more stressed out. If you are exhausted from work and all you want to do is to relax at home, then that is what you should do. Explain to your friends and hopefully they will understand and both you and them are going to enjoy spending time together more next time when you feel energized and happy instead of tired and distracted.

    3.ALWAYS LISTEN TO YOUR BODY

    Have you worked out multiple times this week already and you are on your way home from a long day at work? Your one knee is already aching from wearing uncomfortable shoes all day long, your wrists are a bit sore after this mornings yoga class, and all you can think off is how you must get to the gym so you can feel like a super woman who can manage to do 536 tasks a day? Maybe now it’s time to stop and take a few deep breaths. Is another session at the gym what your body really needs right now? Probably not. We tend to push ourselves way to hard sometimes and we forget how important it is to listen to our bodies. We should workout to feel good and happy, not to drain ourselves. It is okey, and actually very important, to take some time to relax and rewind from a stressful week. It’s important to rest both our bodies and our minds. Your body is your friend, and it knows what you need, all you have to do is remember to listen.

    4.NOURISH YOURSELF

    Give your body what it needs. Remember that by every meal you eat, you have the opportunity to nourish your body! The more nutritious food you eat, the better you will feel. That’s a fact. Eat fresh fruit, vegetables and berries in all the colors of the rainbow! Add some grains and protein like beans for example. Eat a lot of it and you will feel energized and focused. Make sure to eat a diet full of variety, healthy fats, fiber, antioxidants and vitamins. If you only feed your body with heavy, sugary, empty carbs, processed foods and bad fats, then of course you will eventually feel tired and sluggish.
    There are also other ways to nourish yourself, like taking a long hot epsom salt bath to relax, like getting a nice pedicure, cooking a nice meal for yourself, enjoy a glass of red wine with a friend, to plant a plant, buy your favorite tea, take a long walk in nature, swim in the ocean, learn something new. Next time you do something for yourself, notice how you feel afterwards. Are you feeling kinder towards yourself?

    5.PRACTICE GRATITUDE

    If you want to find happiness, practice gratitude. Really, be grateful for all the amazing things and people you have in your life. Why do you feel like you need to chase more than that? Be grateful for waking up in the morning to a new sunny day, be grateful that your body is breathing for you, every day. Be grateful that you have a home and a computer or phone to read this on. Be grateful for the small things around you, that is so easy to forget. Before you fall asleep at night or first thing in the morning before looking at your phone, think of something you are grateful for. It will create a positive mindset for the day! Say thank you to people and really mean it, give compliments and smile to others. Talk to your friends and family about good things that happened today or this week. Just take a moment and remember how much you already have and be grateful for it every day.

    6. SHINE YOUR LIGHT

    Remember to paus and check in with yourself during the day. How do you feel? When do you feel truly connected to yourself and when don’t you? What can you do right now to feel better for yourself and for others?Do something today, and every day, that allows you to shine.

  • Cape town is an amazing place in many ways! The nature is breathtaking and there’s always something fun to do. Go on a hike in the mountains, relax at the beach, visit a vineyard and do a wine tasting and watch the beautiful sunsets. Cape town is definitely one of my favorite cities in the whole world! And, the food is so delicious, cheap and fresh. It’s a city where it’s very easy to find a lot of vegan options. Almost all restaurants are familiar with what “vegan” means and many already have vegan options on the menu. And of course there’s a lot of cafes and restaurants that are fully vegan! I would love to share some of my favorite food spots:

    NOURISH’D

    I would say, Nourish’d is one of my absolute favorite cafe’s in Cape town. They have lot’s of different smoothie bowls on the menu so you will always find one that suits you. Everything from chocolate, almond butter to green and mango. They also serve delicious avocado toasts, juices, warm drinks and salads. They are located at two different spots, one in the city center and one in Observatory area. The one in the center usually gets quite busy and sometimes you need to wait a little bit for a seat. The one in Observatory is bigger and they also have more lunch options on their menu.

    Nourish’d Cafe and Juicery
    177 Kloof street
    Gardens
    and
    186 Lower Main rd
    Observatory

    Click here to see their menus.


    RAW & ROXY

    Another great place for a delicious smoothie bowl, and also so much more, is Raw and Roxy. Everything on the menu here is raw and vegan. Raw mushroom burger, raw pizza, tapas platter, ice creams and of course, my favorite – berry smoothie bowl with vanilla cashew sauce, are only a few of all the options here. I can also recommend the iced matcha latte which they always serve with a bit of mint (I always order it unsweetened).

    Raw and Roxy
    38 Hout st (the corner of hout and burg st)

    Click here to see their menu.


    SCHECKTER’S RAW

    If you want to eat a delicious vegan burger or sweet pancakes you should go to Scheckter’s Raw! They have lot’s of options on the menu, and everything is vegan. The snickers bar is one of my favorite raw treats.

    Scheckter’s Raw 
    98 Regent road, Sea point

    Click here to see their menu.


    ORANJEZICHT FARMERS MARKET

    A very fun thing to do during the weekends in Cape town is to visit a farmers market! To buy fresh organic produce, taste and eat a lot of different foods, buy home made products and beautiful flowers, and to hang out with great people. My favorite farmers market in Cape town is Oranjezicht City Farm – Market.
    It’s located close to V&A Waterfront and is there every Saturday 9.00-14.00 and Sunday 9.00-15.00. I would recommend to go around 11.00.

    Oranjezicht City Farm – Market
    Granger Bay Blvd, V&A Waterfront

    Click here to visit their website.


    THE POKE CO.

    If you are a big fan of Poke bowls (like me!), you have to try The Poke Co. This place is not fully vegan but they have vegan options on the menu and you can also make your own poke bowl exactly how you want it. It’s also good for take away or to order on Uber Eats. 

    The Poke Co. 
    90 Loop St
    and
    The Point Mall, 76 Regent St, Seapoint

    Click here to see their menu.


    CAFÉ CHARLES

    If you want to eat a nice lunch or dinner in a beautiful, cosy setting I recommend Café Charles. You sit outside under a big tree, or on their roof top. Or if you want to sit inside, it’s decorated as someones living room with a cosy fire place. The place is relaxed and their staff is super helpful and kind. The place is not vegan but you can always ask them to make a vegan dish for you and the chef is happy to help and adjust. The menu is seasonal but last time I was there, their sweet potato gnocchi with chickpeas and their green salad were my two favorites.

    Café Charles 
    137 Waterkant st, De Waterkant

    Click here to see their menu.


    BABYLONSTOREN

    A visit to Babylonstoren is just a must when you’re in Cape town. Or okey, it’s a little drive out of Cape town but it’s so worth it.
    “Babylonstoren is one of the oldest Cape Dutch farms. It has a fruit and vegetable garden of beauty and diversity, unique accommodation, fine food and wine, and a sense of wellbeing.” 
    Visit their huge, beautiful garden, enjoy a wine tasting, visit the garden spa, have a tea ceremony, and of course eat a delicious lunch or dinner at their restaurant Babel. They cook with their own fresh produce. Babel is not a vegan restaurant but they can make something vegan for you if you ask (let them know when you make the reservation). I mean they have a garden full of fresh vegetables and fruits!
    Important to know is that you have to make your reservation at Babel far in advance.

    Babylonstoren (Babel) 
    Klapmuts Simondium Road,
    Simondium, 7670

    Click here to visit their website.


    FLOURISH BISTRO

    A nice breakfast and lunch place in Woodstock is Flourish Bistro. Their menu changes from day to day, so there is always something new to eat. They have a lot of fully raw options on the menu.

    Flourish Bistro 
    403 Albert road, Woodstock

    Click here to see their menu.


    LOADING BAY

    Another good breakfast and lunch place is Loading bay. The place is not vegan but they have a few vegan options on the menu, and you can order small sides (like wild mushrooms!). They have good coffee and I really like their green juice.

    Loading Bay
    30 Hudson st, De Waterkant

    Click here to see their menu.


    ORCHARD ON LONG

    Orchard on Long is a juice and health bar. You can find many vegan options (even though the place is not fully vegan): delicious juices, vegan wrap, vegan burger, breakfast bowls, salads and some snacks.

    Orchard on Long
    211 Long st

    Click here to see their menu.


    TASHAS

    Since I’m vegan, and unfortunately the menu at Tashas is not very vegan friendly, I haven’t tried lot’s of the food here. BUT: I still have to mention that you can go here if you want a big salad! Order their Butternut salad, (order it without cheese to make it vegan!) it’s absolutely delicious and filling.

    Tashas
    Shop 7117 V&A Waterfront

    Click here to see their menu


    THE STRANGERS CLUB

    If you are looking for a nice spot to sit and do some computer work or just enjoy a nice breakfast or lunch, The Strangers club is a good option. Dishes are quite small and the place is not fully vegan but they have some nice vegan options.

    The Strangers Club
    1 Braemar road, Greenpoint

    Click here to see their menu.


    UNFRAMED

    And, last but not least: 
    You will find the best vegan ice-cream in Cape town at Unframed.
    They always have around 4 different vegan options. Flavors like chocolate, peanut, raspberry, vanilla, turmeric, blue coconut and matcha. Always very creamy! You can have a look at their instagram story if you want to see the flavors of the day!

    Unframed 
    45C Kloof st Gardens
    and
    V&A food market

    Click here to visit their website.


    GROUND ART CAFFE

    If you want to enjoy a good cup of coffee, I recommend going to Ground art caffe. It’s a small place with very friendly staff. They always have different plant milk options. They started to serve food now too and they have vegan options on their menu.

    Ground art Caffe
    160 strand st

    Click here to see their menu.

  • So simple. Yet so delicious and healthy. It’s not coincidence that avocado toast is super popular in many parts of the world. Avocado on toast is a winning combination. And you can easily switch it up with different toppings and flavors! 

    1.
    Start to make the actual avocado mixture. It’s up to you though if you want to make it into a “smash” or just slice the ripe avocado and press it onto your toast with a fork. I prefer to smash and mix it in a bowl together with freshly squeezed lemon juice, black pepper and a small pinch of salt before spreading it on the actual toast. Sometimes I add some herbs or spices too. But, I prefer to keep it simple not to reduce the flavor of the delicious avocado. 

    2. 
    Choose a good bread and toast it lightly. It’s very bad for you to eat burnt food, so make sure to just give the bread a hint of color and a crispy surface. For my avocado toast I prefer a freshly baked sour dough bread. The sourdough is fermented which is good for your gut-health! 

    3. 
    Spread the avocado mixture on to your warm toast, and now it’s time for the toppings! I love to add tomatoes that I roast on low heat in the oven, they get sweet and juicy and makes the toast even more creamy. But of course you can choose any toppings that you prefer. Fresh tomatoes, chopped red onion, sprouts and balsamico are some of my favorites. Sprinkle with chili flakes if you like it spicy or add some other seeds or nuts to make it even more nutritious. I love to sprinkle my avocado toasts with chiliflakes, hemp seeds and poppy seeds. Lastly, add fresh herbs like basil or maybe coriander and some more squeezed lemon juice on top. 

    Yes, it’s that easy! Always remember to use perfectly ripe avocados for the best possible flavor and texture. 

    Avocados are a true superfood! They contain lot’s of vitamins like vitamin K, vitamin C and vitamin E, minerals and antioxidants. They are also proven to reduce inflammation in the body and lower cholesterol. 

    Avocados are for sure one of the best fat sources you can have in your diet.

  • Hello everyone and welcome to my brand new website! 
    My name is Melissa Overgaard, I’m 27 years old and I’m Swedish. 
    The last few years I’ve been working as a fashion model and traveled around the world. I’ve lived in cities like Milan, Paris, New York, London, Barcelona and Cape Town. To have a job based on my appearance taught me how important it is to take care of my body, mind and soul. During my years as a fashion model I’ve developed a huge interest in health, diet and exercise. The fashion industry can often times have disturbing standars and body image ideals that I definitely do not stand for nor support. 

    What I support is a healthy lifestyle, to feel your best and take good care of your body. You do that when you eat a healthy diet and move your body. Health begins on the inside.

    The most important thing is to listen to your own body and it’s needs. To find YOUR OWN BALANCE. Eat a diet that gives you energy throughout the day. Find a workout that you love, that also supports your own workout goals: no matter if you train to get more toned or if you train to clear your mind. Personally I’ve made the decision to eat a fully plant-based diet, which means I eat nothing that comes from animals. Also called a vegan diet. I will tell you more about this in upcoming posts here on my blog and also share all my favorite recipes. I’m a true foodie and I love to experiment in the kitchen and create plant-based meals. I always hope to inspire others to eat more healthy and plant-based foods. I like to vary my workouts with gym, HIIT, yoga, hiking, tennis and boxing. And when it comes to yoga, it’s definitely more than a workout for me. I do yoga and meditation to keep a healthy mind. 

    Since I have a huge passion for health I decided to become a Holistic health coach via IIN in New York City. More info about my health coaching is available here on my website under the tag “Health Coach“.  I’m also a certified yoga teacher via Caribe Yoga Academy in Costa Rica. So expect to find lot’s of inspiring plant-based recipes here on my website, informative posts about health and nutrition and lot’s of other fun stuff like travel food guides, workout tips and much more! Don’t forget to follow me on instagram: @melissaovergaard

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