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ApotheBlog: a Storehouse of Ideas

Give yourself the care you deserve

Christine Morgan

Some of you may be familiar with the term Hygge. It’s a fun little Danish concept that has caught on over here and on social media over the past couple of years. It’s all about self-care, positive connections with others, and staying focused on enjoying the moment (and all the moments!). Sounds pretty easy, right? If you’re anything like me — mom, student, job-haver, social life wanna-haver, etc. — it can be difficult to live the good life that the Danish have laid out for us.

How do we even begin? Let’s start with Self-Care. The old saying, “You can’t pour from an empty cup,” rings true for a lot of us. We need to fill our cups. Self-Care has been given an ugly nuance over the years and it’s time we abandon that thinking. Women are givers and nurturers, sometimes to our own demise. It’s time we start focusing that nurturing inward. A simple bath with a beautiful bath soak is a great way to give yourself that care. Sounds a bit wonky to be gifting yourself with experiences but HELLO! how are we going to be good to anyone else if we are depleted?

Here’s a little self-care guide that Apothespa can help you achieve:

  1.  Kindred Skincare La Femme 2018: this luxurious oil is the be all and end all of femininity. Wrap your skin in this beautiful oil to feed your feminine spirit and wow any who see the rose shimmers upon your skin. The perfect accessory to any holiday party dress!

  2. Moon Bath Rituals Bath Teas: steep these aromatic teas and include them in your bath to uplift your mood and center your spirit. They also make a beautiful smudging ritual to help clear out bad energy.

  3. Deco Miami: vegan, low-tox nail polishes to keep you far from chemicals and close to fabulous manicures. The little touches matter, take the time to add them to your routine.

  4. Papa’s Apothecary Sandman’s Gift: not sure if you know this, but not sleeping creates Zombies and nobody likes Zombies. This beautiful blue-chamomile-based herbal oil takes life down about 10 notches, perfect for yourself or your little ones.

  5. Innersense Organic Beauty Hair Masque: listen, it’s dry here in McCall. We are all frizzed out both mentally and folically. Fight the frizz with a low-key mask treatment that smells amazing and is eco-friendly to boot.

  6.  Oils, Oils, Oils, and more Oils: ladies, I will shout this from the rooftops: YOU DESERVE OILS ON YOUR FACE. Weird, I get it. Don’t be afraid of oils. Oils preserve and protect our skin. They will make you glow. They are our friends. We have a million oils and we will help you find the one that’s perfect for you personally.

  7.  Sad Shop Co Cards: irreverence is pretty awesome. Quirky cards that make you giggle will probably make other people giggle and giggling is a major part of connecting with other humans. Make other humans giggle by giving them a Sad Shop card. The world is a mess right now and the more we laugh and make others laugh, the better we all will be.

  8. Caramel Caravan Goodies: handmade caramels. I don’t believe I need to expound on this awesomeness.

  9. Scientific Organics Peptide Booster Serum: people are usually pretty surprised when they hear I’m more than 10 years older than they think I am (which is awesome) and it’s mostly due to using peptides. These little wonder-ingredients help to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, brighten up hyperpigmentation and reduce inflammation. Inflammation = inflammaging.

  10. Facials! Spend an hour with me and let me do the heavy lifting on releasing stress and tension. Most people have no idea just how much tension they’re storing up in their facial region until it’s been released by a hearty massage. You deserve it!

Our Menu: One 60-minute Facial

Christine Morgan

Our menu consists of one item. Yep, just one. A 60-minute facial. That’s it. If that seems somewhat confusing, there is a method to my madness.

I am a skincare expert. I know what you need, what your skin needs. I’m the one who should be choosing that, right? Yep. I often see spas and facialists with menus that are way too long and way too complicated. How does a client know what they need when they aren’t the expert?

This is what we want to solve with our simpler menu. No more ala carte charging for things your skin needs. You shouldn’t be penalized by add-on costs if your skin needs a peel or an extra mask. And I should be able to be in the driver’s seat when it comes to treating your skin.

Easy fix!

We will be offering one, fully customized service to treat what we see the day you come in for your treatment. You might see us 12 times a year and each treatment could be completely different. Because your skin is not the same as someone else’s and your skin is not the same from day to day. We provide a completely bespoke treatment to give you the relaxation you need and the results you deserve.

“Hey Molly,” you might ask, “what will I get in this treatment?”

Great question! My facial is based on a traditional European approach with the addition of high-tech and no-tech modalities to garner fast, noticeable results. I use eco-friendly products with a hyper focus on skin nutrition and wellness.

I do not use microderm and will not incorporate it in the future as I’m opposed to it. I can guide you through that position if you’d like, just ask!

I do extractions if you need it but will not force the issue if your skin does not appear to handle them well. I use natural aromatherapies throughout the treatment to deepen relaxation. There is also a lot of massage in my treatments, which clients tend to really enjoy.

Clients leave my care relaxed, refreshed, and glowing. Depending on the challenges you may be having, I will suggest a regular treatment schedule between every 4-8 weeks.

I will also suggest at-home products for you to use for homework. I say “homework” because it takes effort to have beautiful, healthy skin. I see you once every 4-8 weeks; this means the rest of the time, it’s up to you to follow the routine I lay out for you. You must do a lot of the heavy lifting to make this team work. If you come to me with serious issues that need resolving, I’m going to count on you to commit to your homework. You can count on me to make reasonable, budget-appropriate suggestions that will help us achieve the skin you desire. Remember, if you use unhealthy products on your skin while getting regular facials, you’re taking two steps forward and twenty steps back. Let’s work together to make a fabulous glow!

I have an opinion or two about everything, so I encourage you to let my two decades of experience show you what I can accomplish in a treatment. You are my walking billboard. Helping you put your best face forward is paramount for me, so let’s team up to help you achieve that.

XoXo Molly

The Ripple Effect of Shopping Small

Christine Morgan

1. Spend money in McCall and more of it stays in McCall

For every $100 you spend at locally owned businesses, $68 will stay in the community. What happens when you spend that same $100 at a national chain? Only $43 stays in the community. This is huge! When you shop locally, you are investing in McCall: investing in new jobs being created, your neighbors making more money to spend in town, and our city remaining healthy and vibrant.

2. You embrace what makes McCall unique

McCall is really something special…don’t we want to keep it that way? When you shop indie businesses, you help your community remain unique. McCall is anything but boring and our independent business community helps maintain that.

3. You create local jobs

Local businesses are better at creating higher paying jobs for your neighbors. When you shop locally, you help create jobs for teachers, firemen, police officers, and many other essential professions. You are also creating access for people to rise to the middle class and beyond.  Isn’t that the ultimate American dream?

4. You help the environment

Buying from a locally owned business conserves energy and resources in the form of less fuel for transportation and less packaging from shipping. Let’s face it, the environment is what makes McCall so special to so many. If we don’t protect it, how long will it remain so beautiful? Every little step we take to preserve the beauty of McCall matters.

5. You nurture community

Local business owners know you and you know them. Studies have shown that local businesses donate to community causes at more than twice the rate of chains. The investment in community goes both ways. We want to support the people who support McCall. Can the businesses you shop at say they support what’s important to you in your neighborhood?

6. You conserve your tax dollars

Shopping in a local business district means less infrastructure, less maintenance, and more money available to beautify your community. Also, spending locally instead of online ensures that your sales taxes are reinvested where they belong— in your community! The loss of sales tax revenue hurts us. No number of discounts from online retailers can make up for the needs of our local infrastructure. That money will have to be raised somehow, either through local taxes or taxes levied on our homes. When we spread the demand out amongst us and those who visit our fair city, it lessens the burden on local homeowners when the tax man comes.

7. You create more choice

Locally owned businesses pick the items and products they sell based on what they know you like and want. Local businesses carry a wid­er array of unique products because they buy for their own individual markets. Your opinions and needs matter to us! We want to best serve you; you can’t say that about most chains. 

8. You can take advantage of their expertise

You are their friends and neighbors, and locally owned businesses have a vested interest in knowing how to serve you. They’re passionate about what they do. Why not take advantage of it? We can save you money by making sure you are buying exactly what you need. That cost savings adds up over time.

9. You invest in entrepreneurship

Creativity and entrepreneurship are what the American economy is founded upon. Nurturing local business helps build a strong community. Strong communities can withstand pretty much anything. Help us make McCall stronger by supporting locally owned businesses.

10. You make your community a destination

The more interesting and unique your community, the more it will attract new neighbors, visitors and guests. This benefits everyone! We all know that tourism is our bread and butter here – how do we keep them coming back? With McCall’s very own brand of warm hospitality and unique stores to keep them coming back year after year.

*Source: Civic Economics – Andersonville Study of Retail Economics.


How to look 20 years younger [wink]

Christine Morgan

The number one question I get asked as an esthetician is, “Can you make me look 20 years younger?”

I chuckle and explain that, unfortunately, my magic wand is broken. In the back of my mind; however, I know you can get substantial results when you use my two favorite ingredients: acids and oils.

Why? Skin preservation and restoration relies on two main components: acids to regenerate and prevent damage and oils to protect and repair damage.


A myriad of acids are used in beauty products and I love all of them immensely. Each one does something different for and to the skin. I believe in using a multi-acid approach to get a more balanced result in the end.

Here’s a quick overview of some acids and their functions for your future reference:

Glycolic Acid: an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that has a small structure allowing it to penetrate the skin to do more work. Excellent for most skin types, but darker skins should avoid large amounts.

Salicylic Acid: for acneic and oily skin. This beta-hydroxy acid helps thin out sebum (the oil produced by our skin) secretions to help prevent bacteria-induced acne. Great for non-sensitive teens and men.

Lactic Acid: the gentlest acid, this milk-derived AHA is great for all skin types.

Hyaluronic Acid: HA isn’t an acid in the traditional sense. It is a humectant, drawing 1,000 times its weight in water that it holds in place within the skin. It provides a plumping effect, making us appear more youthful.

Lipoic Acid: fat and water-soluble, lipoic acid is a master antioxidant. It protects the skin from damage and trans-epidermal water loss. It is derived from an oil, not from a fruit, milk, or nut.

Kojic Acid: one of my all-time favorites for treating hyperpigmentation. This acid derived from mushrooms helps break down melanin from sun damage and acne spots.

There are a ton more acids out there, so we will make sure to showcase in future posts these amazing ingredients and all the benefits you can reap by using them daily.


Your skin is a living, breathing organism that has major nutritional needs. Most people don’t realize that fats and oils are vital to healthy skin function. This is a hard lesson to teach my clients because for the last 30 years we have been beating the notion into them that oil-free is best, which is ridiculous.

Our cells need water, fats, minerals, and vitamins to function well. Most people think that water is the most important factor for good skin health and that’s just not the case. Our integument system (the skin) is not like a plant. If we feel dehydrated and drink water, think of all the systems that take that water before it reaches the skin cells.

Drinking more water may not guarantee hydrated skin; however, using oils and essential fatty acids on the skin prevents TEWL (trans-epidermal water loss), which is the major cause of dehydrated skin. I’m not saying water isn’t important, but it’s not the key to healthy skin.

Oils contain super-ingredients called essential fatty acids (EFAs). They repair and prevent damage, are loaded with antioxidants and defend against internal as well as external aggressors. Our bodies cannot produce these EFAs, so we can only get them from the foods we eat or topically in the products we use. They are vital in helping reduce inflammation, protect from sun damage, and maintain healthy cell metabolism. Omega 3s and 6s help provide protection, boost the lipid barrier structure (layer of lipids on our skin that helps protect it from things like the sun, pollution, chemicals, etc.), and healthy fats for your cells to regenerate and repair themselves.

Daily use of acids and oils in your skincare routine will give you fantastic results in the appearance and function of your skin, no matter your age or skin type!