Mia Belle on Christine Bullock’s Glow Retreat

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It’s natural to feel the desire to create a self-care community. As women, we are wired to gather with each other. In a climate where the medical community does not champion women’s health, many of us have had to get care and advice from one another by sharing our stories – victories and failures.

Reclaiming our health – together – has been not only a passion of mine but also of health expert, Christine Bullock. I was lucky enough to participate in her Glow Retreat: a retreat where your self-care was not thought of a luxury – but as a necessity.

Christine’s background is in physical fitness. Her approach to fitness is truly holistic. She creates workouts, advises on nutrition and treatments, all in the frame of creating an individual’s most optimal version of health and vitality.

Our beauty tribe met in the desert and immersed ourselves in all the things Christine feels puts people on the path to result driven self-care. Every morning we started out with a fresh glass of celery juice (she was a fan pre-medical medium). This was followed by our first workout of the day, then our beauty treatments. Our days ended with a second workout and an hour of stretching. The weekend was about resting our body and minds by detoxifying and fortifying.
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I want to share with you two internal helpers and two activities that really resonated with me and what I’m still integrating into my life.

Let’s go inside first!

I love activated charcoal internally and in skincare, but I’ve never taken charcoal on a regular basis. Now I take a dose every time I go into my Higher Dose wrap for extra detoxing. I’ve found that taking it before any type of serious sweating will take your detoxing game to the next level!

Charcoal helps not only with overall detoxing, by binding and flushing out toxins, but also reduces gas and bloating due to the fact that it has a negative electric charge that attracts positively charged gas. Activated charcoal is also thought to have “anti-aging” benefits because it helps to keep your brain healthy and prevents other numerous cellular changes associated with aging.

Another game changer for me was the Pau d’Arco tea. This tea is know to have numerous benefits, but I especially love its anti-inflammatory effects and its ability to help with the overproduction of candida, and lessening of parasites. Of course, whenever you lessen inflammation, you help to keep yourself vital and strong. The symptoms of too much candida in the system can create cravings for sugar, which can be detrimental for some of us. But the most beneficial for me has been its effect on keeping my blood sugar levels more stable. Even more amazing is the beta-lapachone found in Pau d’Arco, which is a potent catalyst for a molecule called NAD+. By increasing NAD+, Pau d’Arco helps improve mitochondrial ATP production – AMAZING. I drink a cup every night, I love this ritual. It tells my body it’s time to get ready for bed, and the tea fortifies my body to help it to do all its regenerating activities while I sleep.

Not all heat is created equal.

I know a hot bath or steam can feel very relaxing, but they can also be too dehydrating, especially for the skin. The company HigherDOSE was created in NYC by founders Lauren Berlingeri and Katie Kaps. They’ve created a great at-home therapeutic infrared sauna blanket. The name Higher Dose doesn’t lie, you can truly get a “high” off the benefits of these body blankets. I refer to the blanket as a wrap, because you feel really snug and fully immersed.

Raising your core temperature for short periods to improve your health is a concept known “hyperthermic conditioning.” When the body heats up therapeutically, you not only reap the benefits glowing skin, better sleep, less cellulite, and the burning of calories, but also some amazing responses in the brain. It releases human growth hormone, inspires the growth of new brain cells, and since infrared triggers our brain’s happiness chemicals (dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, and endorphins), when you use the wrap, you get happy!

I could write a whole article on the subject of which heating mechanisms are more or less beneficial, but simply put this blanket offers 7x the benefits of other heat treatments. The results are due to some key points of its construction: its heating mechanism. The added amethyst layer deepens the benefits of infrared. The tourmaline layer that generates negative ions. The charcoal layer to amplify the detoxification process, and the magnetic strip for improved blood circulation.

I try and get in mine two times a week. It’s a great way to take the time to sit quietly and relax, or I’ll practice one of my mediation disciplines. On a practical note, these blankets are compact and can be rolled up for easy storage. Many of my friends and family received one for the holidays!

Another reason I’m a big fan of the blanket is that it’s not an aggressive form of detoxifying. I believe in always inspiring the body versus forcing it.

This is why I’m in love with the next thing I will share with you that I took home from Christine’s Glow Retreat: my trampoline.

There’s a reason why our lymphatic system does not have a “pump” – especially for women. One of the lymphatic system’s jobs is to help and protect us from toxins and aggravators. If you release and flush out the lymph too fast and or aggressively, you can make yourself sick and drained. The trampoline allows for a healthy release of the lymph and a healthy release of happy chemicals in your brain.

People who integrate trampoline, or rebounding, into their exercise routine will improve their digestion, stimulate mitochondrial production (improved cell energy), have better balance, and heighten circulation of oxygen throughout their body – which increases energy. Some sources even claim that the unique motion of bouncing can also help support the thyroid and adrenals. Aesthetically, it creates more muscle tone and because it helps with bone health – the first layer I target with my Dermal Bonding philosophy – you will have a more vital and youthful structure, from head to toe.

Our bones are made of living tissue that is constantly being broken down and replaced. Rebounding has been proven to produce a strengthening resistance for our bones. But unlike other exercises, especially weight-bearing exercise; rebounding is very low impact, so it’s gentler on joints, cartilage, and vertebrae.  Again, it’s an inspiring tool to greater health versus an aggressive one.

There’s so much info about health and self-care online. I feel so blessed to have a person like Christine Bullock on my dream team. There are so many people sharing their stories, which I think, can be great – we share the better. But please know the difference between a person sharing their human experience, versus a person who is a professional in the health and beauty fields. There’s a lot of empowering knowledge you can get from anyone sharing his or her opinion or paid endorsement, but know that it’s just that – a share. Please take your time to go a bit deeper to learn from people that have made their life passion your health and beauty. You also have to understand that you are 50% of the chemistry of anything you try. As a practitioner, I always honor this and understand my responsibly when I educate or share. If you want to obtain your optimal health, you have to listen to your body and follow not only other people’s views, and your dominant mind, but also your intuition.

Listen to your body.

It has a lot to tell you.


MIA-BELLEIn the name of beauty, Mia Belle seeks to elevate the future of skin care.

Mia Belle is a well-traveled paramedical aesthetician with nearly two decades of experience in the fields of skin care and preventative aging. Her passion to be a part of  the rapid advancements in health care and her continued training on a global level, allows her to develop the best treatments and products possible. She has trained in Montreal, Paris, London, Norway, Iceland, New York, and San Francisco with some of the most internationally renowned chemists, engineers, physicians and alternative health practitioners.

Mia Belle is a published skin care expert who has been featured on Oprah, EXTRA, “E” Entertainment, Access Hollywood and KTLA.

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