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Recent Entries

An Update on our Herbal Tonics

As you might have noticed, we introduced a couple of new products on our website recently. We’re so excited to share our new line of elixirs with you, especially those outside the San Francisco Bay Area, for whom we weren’t able to deliver our existing products.

About a year and half ago, we created our range of Herbal Tonics as a ready-to-drink, bottled product, so our clients could easily purchase and consume them without much work on their part. From tart refreshers to herbal broths, these deeply nourishing and unique tonics were delivered to our clients throughout San Francisco and the East Bay, who have incorporated them into their lifestyles as a nourishment ritual.

We received a lot of interest outside our home city, but unfortunately, due to the perishable nature of those products, it didn’t make sense to ship them due to high shipping costs and ecological concerns. Our new elixirs are non-perishable, and shippable to all parts of the United States (and hopefully internationally soon).

In the meantime, we’re taking a short break from our tonics, while we work on our website and handcrafted production process to accommodate for both products and all delivery regions. We are also working on some local partnerships that will expand the availability of these tonics in a more convenient, accessible way. Stay tuned for updates on this journal and our Facebook page.

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Introducing Rose & Root: Bottling Edible Luxury

From a young age my mother taught me how important sleep was, to health, beauty, fitness, and well-being. She said it so often, that if it had not been for her general wisdom and the fact that she seemingly never aged, I would have considered it nagging.

She is also the one who instilled in me the concept of a health delicacy. Different from a culinary delicacy like fois gras or oysters, she said that the most expensive, delicate foods should always be the ones that nourish, not the ones that necessarily taste good. These healing foods and herbs build strength in the body, blood, and energy and, over time, begin to have a big impact on your health and on staying young.

So when we at Reorient challenged ourselves to create an herbal elixir that would have a true impact on people’s health, we took into consideration all of these things — the beauty and rejuvenating powers of the night, the luxury of a health delicacy, and the range of precious herbs that can nourish your strength, energy, and mind.

In this spirit, we created Rose & Root, our first blend in a new line of elixirs. Meant to be taken in the evenings as part of a pre-sleep ritual, it was designed to promote lasting nourishment and regeneration through the night. With precious rose petals, fortifying roots of the earth, and tart berries, combined in an extremely labor-intensive process of slow brewing and extraction, this is truly an edible delicacy as luxurious as the finest night cream.

I hope you will enjoy this elixir as much as we do. I think you’ll find it quite unique.

xo,

Jess Ng

To purchase or learn more about Rose & Root, visit our website.

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Evening Rituals for Health and Beauty

Ever wondered why so many beauty products are made for the evening hours? What seems obvious to us now may have roots in an ancient philosophy from the Orient. There, nighttime symbolizes one half of all existence, and the harmony in all living things. It is the quiet “yin” to the active “yang”, the darkness in contrast to light.

In this paradigm, night is thought to be ruled by Yin energy, associated with aspects of our bodies related to rest, stillness, and nourishment. This quiet nourishment helps us recover from physical and mental exertion, and regain energy for the next day. Therefore our bodies are especially receptive to restorative, nurturing practices at night.

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Here are a few of our favorite nighttime rituals from past beauties, which are easy to emulate, as well as our own modern-day ritual:

Princess Yonghe (711-762), the daughter of the Tang Emperor, formulated her own “bath salt” mixture that she used for bathing at night. Featured in the Taiping Sacred Remedies medical book, the mixture didn’t actually use salt, but instead was made of rice, dried herbs, and fragrant flowers to help moisturize and soothe skin.

Yang Yuhuan (719-756 A.D.), one of the Four Beauties of Ancient China who was said to have “a face that puts flowers to shame” was known for washing at night with a combination of warm water, almond oil, and honey.

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Empress Elisabeth of Austria, or Sisi (1837 – 1898) was a long-reigning monarch in Habsburg Austria, and also a legendary beauty with porcelain skin and hair down to her knees. Every evening, Empress Sisi took a nourishing bath of warm water mixed with spoonfuls of olive oil, to repair and nourish her skin. Many spas in Europe offer this simple bathing ritual to this day, but it’s easy enough to do at home on your own.

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As for us at Reorient, our favorite evening ritual targets circulation and relaxation. Fill your bathtub or a small bucket with hot water, and add freshly peeled slices of ginger into the water. (Or alternately, brew the ginger water on a stovetop before putting it into a bucket.) Soak your feet into the steamy water. Then, place a large towel over your head (face hung over the water), to capture the rising steam into your skin. The foot soak and facial steam act together to enhance circulation and warmth, and ginger complements this action perfectly. You can also use herbs like mint or lavender for their relaxing, anti-congestion powers.

We hope these will give you some inspiration for how to add a bit of nourishment and pampering to your evening ritual. Stay tuned for a new offering from Reorient related to nighttime nourishment.

Photo Credit: Dennis Wong

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Nourishing Recipes for Winter

Lately, we’ve been craving nutritional nourishment as the weather starts to change, bringing in chilly breezes and shorter days.  Diet is an important part of our wellness and beauty routine, and we look to ancient Chinese theory to determine which foods to eat during the different seasons. Once autumn hits, we start cooking nutritious soups and broths, like the one featured below, to nourish our bodies through the winter. Here’s one of our favorite recipes for a warming and healthy: Winter Melon Broth Recipe.

We also find ourselves cooking up a lot of congee, or creamy rice pudding, during this time of year. Ubiquitous in all Asian countries, congee is one of the most nourishing foods you can eat. Great for resetting your system when fatigued, boosting the immune system, or recovering from an illness, congee delivers nutrients in an easy-to-absorb manner and is also incredibly easy to make. Here’s how we do it: Basic Congee Recipe.

From our kitchen to yours, we hope these recipes help you stay nourished and healthy this season.

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Bloodthirsty on this Halloween

Around Halloween, there’s a lot of talk about blood – vampires, zombies, horror movies – and it’s a lot of gruesome fun. At Reorient, though, we talk “blood” year round. That’s because many of our products carry with them the concept of nourishing blood, a wellness principle originating from the Far East.

It means to enrich the quality of blood that might be deficient from diet, poor sleep, stress, or overwork. Like water that runs through the pipes of a house, blood keeps our body’s system running smoothly, bringing life and vitality to all parts, physical or mental. Healthy blood is the core of wellness and beauty – it brings color to your face, light to your eyes, and suppleness to your skin. Nourishing and building good blood encourages our body’s natural regeneration, ongoing beauty, and elevated spirit.

We’re hard at work developing something bloody exciting. Happy Halloween!

Photo Credit: Carsten Witte

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Fashion to Botanical: Inspiration from NYFW Spring 2015

This year’s New York Fashion Week left us in a dreamy daze of patterns, colors, and best of all, botanicals. We were in awe of these pieces and couldn’t help pairing our favorite looks with the herbal and decorative flowers that we imagine helped inspire them.

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Dresses by Oscar de la Renta, Natural photo credit: Red Leaf Studios

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Dress by Oscar de la Renta

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Dress by Bibhu Mohapatra; Natural photo credit: Charos100

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Dress by Zimmerman; Natural photo credit: DrewBonics

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Dress by Zimmerman; Natural photo credit: DrewBonics

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Dress by Michael Kors; Natural photo credit: Madelene Farin www.madelenefarin.com

Feature photo dress by Michael Kors; Natural photo credit: Detlef Becher

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What is
Reorient?

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We are a small botanical haven in SF, inspired by the history and healing traditions of the Orient. We’re currently taking a break from making our remedies, but continue to explore projects for preserving the beauty of this old world art form. This journal is inspired by ancient apothecary cabinets of the Orient, called Chests of 100 Seeds, full of precious herbs and hidden secrets, each one a key to a potential new ritual.

read more about us

@reorienthouse
on instagram


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