Well Woman Interview: Nadine Artemis of Living Libations
Nadine Artemis is a beauty philosopher, aromacologist, botanical muse and co-owner + alchemist behind Living Libations, one of my favourite Canadian skincare lines that has branched into so much more over the years. Nadine is one of the first people I looked to for knowledge in my early 20s when I was discovering a new way of living and treating my body.
A true health expert, Nadine’s knowledge comes from years of study and personal experience. I also believe it comes to her with transcendence through her way of life and connection to our earth.
Nadine lives in the country, in Haliburton Ontario on a lake with her beautiful family. Often going on nature walks with her cats, spending mornings sun gazing over a fog-covered lake, the snippets she shares over social media adorn us like garlands of her love and enchantment with nature.
Nadine is a woman on a clear path. Knows exactly where she is headed and doesn’t let any noise interfere. She has chosen a life supportive of this way of living. I have such respect and admiration for that.
This interview is like poetry, as most of her writing is. Read, enjoy and be inspired by this brilliant woman.
Side note, these are some of my absolute favourite Living Libations products: Salt Inhaler, Best Skin Ever, Energy Dry Brush, Lymph Tonic, Gum Drops, Copper Tongue Scraper, and the book she wrote on Holistic Dental Care.
What are your morning rituals? What is the first thing you do when you rise?
My family starts the morning by watching the sunrise together, taking in the morning colour. We drink fresh spring water and eat chocolate melted inside a warm blueberry and chia crepe. As we eat we like to call out all of the things we feel grateful for and celebrate everything that we appreciate in our lives.
After breakfast, when the weather is warm, we go for a swim in our lake. Then we bask in the sun for a while. When our lake freezes over or it is too cold for a swim, I take a hot morning bath with magnesium flakes and a few drops of frankincense essential oil. I anoint face and body with Rose Best Skin Ever or Everybody Loves the Sunshine to prepare my skin for a busy day of work and play.
What foods do you choose to nourish yourself + family with?
We always eat from a palette of rainbow-rich coloured, organic, whole foods. We never buy or eat processed food because we avoid gluten, sugar, and rancid and processed fats. We also love to forage for herbs, and berries from our forest to add to our meals. Fresh, edible flowers make every meal beautiful.
Quality of food is very important and so is quality of mind. How do you feed your mind?
I feed my mind with gratitude and with good feelings and thoughts. Expansive visions made manifest as well as meditation open my mind, feed my imagination, and invite creativity. I also feed my mind with molecules of essential oils ranging from whiffs of white sage to frankincense, and rose to neroli.
You make the most incredible skin food for thousands of people around the world, so of course we must ask you! What are your skin and beauty rituals?
I like to do as little as possible by way of beauty maintenance and avoid perpetual loops of products and appointments. I would rather a date dipping in my lake than apply a handful of products while staring in a mirror. Effortlessness is my guiding-light when it comes to skincare. So I stick to optimally potent and element-embracing Libations for my self-care. I wash my face and body and moisturize with oils, brush my teeth with botanicals, and wash my hair with spirulina shampoo. Plant-power makes beauty rituals quick and easy. I also dry bush every day.
Each particle matters applied to my body matters. Each drop must contain boundless, bioactive, botanical beauty. When nature provides such exquisite and effective elements to graciously attend to our skin, we must see the use of synthetics as the definition of insanity.
When do you feel your most radiant?
My recipe for radiance is a swim in the lake and then letting my body and hair dry in the sun.
Has your idea of beauty shifted over the years?
My idea of beauty is always the same: inner glow creates outer glow. By tuning into the grace of who you really are, you liberate and illuminate your birthright beauty.
You have a close relationship with our sun, do you practice the ancient technique of sun gazing every day? How do you recommend one begin this practice?
Practicing sun gazing meets my body and spirit’s sun-needs, and I sun gaze every sunny morning. The practice is easy to begin; simply look at sun as it rises or sets. It is safe to look at the sun at any time within the hour after sunrise or before sunset because ultraviolet levels are at zero.
It is best to begin slowly to acclimatize your eyes to the sun. Start by looking at the sun for about 10 seconds and then add 10 seconds to your sun gazing practice every day. After three months, you will have built up to 15 minutes, which is awesome.
You have such a beautiful, close, respectful relationship with our earth. Can you speak about this connection?
From my earliest childhood memories I knew that I needed nature like it was my best friend.
Our beings, our bodies are made to engage with all the elements that earth endlessly offers. From the meteorites that plant microbes on our planet to the carbon content of our cells, we are linked to the atoms of comets that fell to the earth and the elements of exploding stars. Physicists tell us that 93% of the mass of our body is stardust. This may be a revelation to us, but Paracelsus, the 16th century alchemist, instinctively understood our intimacy with the galaxy when he wrote, “we are extracts from the stars.” I think it is vital that we soothe the stardust that is us in with earth’s life-affirming elements.
The botanical banquet that earth offers is astounding and each plant offers insight into life’s infinite intelligence. Plants mix elemental-matter into the manna that continually rebuilds our body throughout our lifetime. Plants are cosmic-chemists, endlessly assembling the molecules of the world, and we live by the grace of this assembly.
What does it mean to you to feel powerful as a woman?
Being powerful as a woman means fully embracing what are deemed the feminine facets of intuition, compassion, and beauty combined with a dynamic understanding of self-awareness and self-knowledge. It means feeling comfortable – and beautiful – in your skin.
History illustrates that power is the ultimate aphrodisiac in a man. As we shift into a more conscious era and as gender norms change, what do you feel is the ultimate aphrodisiac in your partner? (Emotional intelligence, communication, compassion, respect for nature etc.!)
Emotional intelligence, which I feel like cannot exist without communication, compassion, and respect for life, is a must for me. A serious sense of humor is also quite an aphrodisiac. I like to say that rose-colored glasses are a must-have fashion accessory, and Ron’s rosy outlook, infinite intelligence and dashing sense of humor is certainly attractive to me, too.
What advice would you share with other woman to empower them to feel strong and confident?
Acknowledge that there is a part of you that is larger than your physical being; your spirit, your intelligence, your creativity, your intuition, and your exceptional juiciness is the essence of who you are.
What does it mean to you to be a Well Woman?
To me, wellness implies an integrity of self, an open hearted and fully conscious person. A Well Woman is someone who accepts all that she is – body, mind, spirit, emotions – and appreciates her uniqueness, which is a gift from nature to the world.