How To Feng Shui Your Beauty Routine To Bring Love Into Your Life

featured this week on MindBodyGreen

image credit: Stocksy via MindBodyGreen

image credit: Stocksy via MindBodyGreen

Your face offers valuable information in feng shui. You can glean information about health, personality, and influence others with just your face. Here are some feng shui tips to welcome love with a few tweaks to your beauty routine.

Hydrate with rosewater.

Rosewater is soothing and hydrating for the skin and excellent to spritz on your face, neck, and body before, during, and after any beauty regime. Roses represent love and sweetness—the fragrance of flowers (especially roses) can lift your energy and is said to attract love. On a physical level, rose has a profound tonic action on the heart, activating sluggish blood circulation, relieving cardiac congestion, and toning the capillaries. That's literally why we get a flutter from it.

Apply makeup symmetrically, in pairs.

Humans are attracted to bilaterally symmetrical faces—this symmetry in our faces connotes health and vibrancy and resonates with beauty. When applying makeup be sure to keep both sides as even and symmetrical as possible, and apply everything in pairs. The number two (a pair!) also represents love and partnership in feng shui. full article

by Anjie Cho

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Holistic Spaces Podcast, Episode 043: Clutter and Five Elements with Katherine Metz, Part 2








Q&A Sunday: A Bathroom in the Fame Area

I really appreciate and enjoy your podcasts, and have found the one on finding a job particularly helpful. I immediately took the "do one good deed a day for 27 days challenge" and am currently on day 24 first time around :) My easy, go-to good deed is removing rubbish at the entryway of my apartment block. 

My question for you is that the "Fame" area in our apartment is the bathroom and I'm wondering what I can do about it. The bathroom door directly faces the front door, and they are maybe four meters apart. The connecting hallway is very narrow so I feel like the energy is probably just shooting from the door straight down the drain. As this bathroom also has no window, I need to air it frequently (after a bath or shower) by leaving the door open. Is there anything I can do? 

Piera, Hamburg, Germany

Hi Piera,

Thank you for listening to the podcast and for your wonderful question!

AND…Kudos to you for taking on the “One good deed a day” adjustment!! Did you make it through to day 27? I’d love to hear more about it. Interestingly, when I thing of the feng shui of removing rubbish from the entryway to your apartment block, I'd guess that if you were doing this for a new job, it would definitely help to open up how many opportunities would come to you. Removing the rubbish would probably weed out the undesirable jobs to make space for something amazing. I’d love to hear more about your experience if you’d like to share!

As for your question: What can be done about your bathroom located in the Fame area of your apartment? Since Fame is related to fire, it’s not the most ideal place for a bathroom because it can put out the passion and power of your reputation and how the world sees you. You also noted that the front door is directly in line with the bathroom door, approximately four meters (13 feet) away, all connected with a narrow hallway. If you could send along a floor plan, it would be helpful in determining just how quickly the qi is moving out towards the back of the home.

My first suggestion would be to place a mirror on the outside of the bathroom door. Second, I would suggest that if you have to keep the bathroom door open, perhaps use a curtain (like bamboo, a light fabric, or even a Japanese noren) to keep the bathroom out of the direct line of sight from the front door. Another option could be to place something nearer to the front door that blocks the view to the toilet. It’s unhealthy in feng shui to have the toilet be the first thing you see when you walk in the home. Again, I suggest you send in your floor plan to see if that’s possible. Either way, I would go with the curtain option as well to help with this situation.

Again, I'm very excited to hear that you are working on the 27-day challenge. I find it to be a very helpful feng shui adjustment and hope it has been effective for you! Your intuition regarding the feng shui of your bathroom is excellent, and I do hope you'll send along a floor plan or schedule a 15-minute consultation call so we can be sure your fame and passion isn't flowing right down the drain!

by Anjie Cho

Thanks for reading our "Q&A Sunday".  We will be answering questions submitted by our readers. Click here to submit any Feng Shui or Green Design questions!

The Ins and Outs of Sick Building Syndrome

The Ins and Outs of Sick Building Syndrome.jpg

Much of my work pertains to homes, apartments and other personal spaces, but the importance of indoor air quality (IAQ) relates to your working environment as well. In modern times, we spend a little less than 1/3 of our time at work on average. That's a lot of time in the same space! Unfortunately, these spaces are often poorly ventilated and filled with a host of other issues that lead to sick building syndrome, which is as gross as it sounds. 

Sick building syndrome is a collection of symptoms that seem to be caused directly by spending time in a certain building, often an office. These symptoms can include anything from headaches, dizziness and sensitivity to smell to asthma attacks, flu-like symptoms and even personality changes! Long term, they can even lead to cancer, pregnancy difficulties and other more serious issues. Not only do these issues cause us to feel poorly, they can also result in higher incidents of missing work and difficulty being productive when we do make it in. 

These effects can be caused by many factors, including:

  • external pollution (think car exhaust, radon, asbestos, lead paint) that leaks indoors through ventilation
  • VOCs off gassed by a number of office supplies like manufactured wood furniture, carpet, printers and more
  • Off gassing from clothing, fragrances and personal products
  • Insect or vermin droppings 
  • Mold and mildew
  • EMFs from small appliances like microwaves
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Ventilation issues

The good news is that there are ways to avoid sick building syndrome, and while many of them are reserved as actions for landlords and building owners, some of them we can do at our desks! If you own a building you suspect of making people sick, take care to use proper ventilation, remove and replace water stained carpet, upholstery and ceiling tiles, aim to use materials that do not off gas as much, and educate yourself as well as possible to help prevent sick building syndrome in your space. Changing out your air filters regularly with HEPA filters can be very effective as well! 

If you're an employee in a sick building, be sure to bring the problem to the attention of someone who can make changes, but you can also consider bringing in a small air purifier for your office and adding plants to your desk and office space that can help to absorb harmful VOCs. Check out our favorite options

Generally the symptoms of sick building syndrome are relieved when you leave the building, but if you leave one place and head to another polluted place, you're not doing much good! So work to make your home as holistic and green as possible to give yourself a safe place to rejuvenate and heal from a long day at the office!

by Anjie Cho

Q&A Sunday: Bedroom Colors and the Bagua

I'm confused when it comes to bedroom feng shui. I see a lot of articles on creating a bedroom space that's romantic, with colors of red/pink, etc. But what about the area in which the bedroom is on the bagua map? My bedroom is in the Family area which has different colors and shapes, etc. than the Love & Relationships area. What's the best way to set up a bedroom like this?

Jennifer S., Madison, WI

Hi Jennifer

Thanks for your question! it’s a really good one, and it comes up a lot. Here we’re looking at two different approaches or feng shui techniques. 

First off, when writing a general post on feng shui for a bedroom, I try to make it as crowd friendly as possible. The bedroom can be in any area of the feng shui bagua map, but it’s always a bedroom! So usually I approach it from the knowledge that the bedroom can be in any bagua area, however here are some ways to work with the bedroom in light of what a bedroom is generally used for: sleep, or healing, or in the case that you mentioned, to encourage romance

It’s actually a great idea to also approach the bedroom with regard to where it’s located on the feng shui bagua map. You mentioned that your bedroom is in the New Beginnings (Family) area and it’s not in the Relationship area. You can possibly see that with your bedroom in this area, there can be opportunities for energy and growth in your relationships, especially your primary relationship. Your bedroom doesn’t have to be in the Relationship area to use the colors related to the Relationship gua. You can invoke romantic colors in your bedroom (in New Beginnings area) to create and invigorate new relationships. Or you can use the colors of New Beginnings (green) to encourage growth and healing in your personal life. But without talking to you, I can’t tell you what is the “best” way to set up your bedroom. 

This is where a feng shui practitioner can be very helpful. My friend and colleague, Doris Ingber, calls what you’re looking at as “Barnes & Noble Feng Shui”, where you read things here and there and work with things in a very literal way. There’s nothing wrong with this, because it’s a step in the right direction! But a skilled feng shui consultant can help you use the feng shui principles in a more precise and effective way depending on what your needs are. It’s sort of like working with a doctor or looking on WebMD 😃 But if that’s not something you’re interested in, I’d advise you to look at what you want to achieve in your bedroom, and take the advice on the posts that resonate with you.  

We’re also doing a raffle on the podcast in May through June 2017, so be sure to enter and you will have a chance to win a free mini-consultation with me that we’ll share on the podcast. There we could look at your bedroom more closely! Until then, take a peek at some of these bedroom feng shui posts to see what you can glean!

by Anjie Cho

Thanks for reading our "Q&A Sunday".  We will be answering questions submitted by our readers. Click here to submit any Feng Shui or Green Design questions!

The Mood-Boosting Nontoxic Nail Polishes You Need To Try Right Now

featured this week on MindBodyGreen by Kayla Jacobs

image credit: Twenty20 via MindBodyGreen

image credit: Twenty20 via MindBodyGreen

Nail polish in general is a lot safer these days, with most brands removing carcinogens and toxic phthalates from their formulas to make them safer for both us (the consumer) and manicurists alike. Bright sunny days call for bold and beautiful nails, and so I've chosen seven shades for your digits' seasonal debut. To aid in the decision-making process, I thought about the literal mood-boosting effects of color, and consulted with feng shui expert, Anjie Cho.

Let these tiny bottles of kaleidoscopic lacquers take center stage in your springtime beauty rituals, and while you get your paint on, rest assured that the formulations you're playing with are the current gold standard in green beauty. Oh, and they shine pretty magically in summer evening light too. Now, I've just got to find that porch to sit on... full article

My Favorite Things: 5 Meaningful Mother's Day Gifts

Welcome to My Favorite Things! Each month, we highlight products to help you create a holistic lifestyle that inspires and nurtures you, so that you can be happier and feel supported.

This month is the month of moms, since Mother's Day is this weekend! If you're still wondering about the perfect gift for the perfect mom, we've got some great ideas for meaningful options that go past a beautiful bouquet (but check out our suggestions if you prefer flowers!). From spiritual art to sustainable beauty products, there is something here for almost any mom!

Abundant Tranquility Mala

One of my friends and favorite clients, Satya Scainetti, has a beautiful collection of jewelry, any piece of which makes an amazing gift. 

Satya does mala workshops, which I highly recommend as a wonderful experience, but if you missed last week's, you can still find meaningful, beautiful malas online. This one represents unconditional love, joy, good fortune and creativity and is one of Satya's choices for Gifts of Love!

Available at: Satya Jewelry

Moon II Yantra Mandala for Nourishment and Creativity

The Moon II yantra, which depicts feminine colors like light blues, pinks and purples, is associated with femininity, nourishment, creativity and emotions. 

This mandala represents self-nourishment and self-care and corresponds to the Relationship area of the feng shui bagua, which is also related to the Mother, making it an ideal gift for the upcoming holiday!

Available at: Holistic Spaces

Warming Herbal Neck Wrap

Being a mom can be tough work, and it's not always easy to find time or money to relax or take a spa day. These warming herbal neck wraps from Savor Beauty, sustainably created from flax seeds, are an easy way to get a little relaxation without having to take an entire day!

They come in various designs, can be used as hot or cold and are great with essential oils! Just pop in the microwave or freezer and soothe stress! You can order wraps online or check in at their newest location in the Upper West Side, designed by Anjie Cho Architect, PLLC!

Available at: Savor Beauty

Feng Shui Consultation

Sometimes the best gifts are actually experiences, and feng shui can be a wonderful, guiding experience for any mom! Feng shui can be helpful on many levels in matters spiritual and mundane. 

I offer a variety of feng shui consultations, including online services, so even if you're not in NYC or LA, helping your mom improve her feng shui and create a personalized holistic space is a possibility!

Available at:

7-Free Vegan Nail Polish Set

Another popular gift for Mother's Day is a trip to the nearest salon for a manicure and pedicure. Nothing quite relaxes like being treated to a massage and some nail upkeep!

This year, instead of relying on traditional nail polish, opt for ella + milla, an eco-friendly nail polish option free of seven nasty chemicals in addition to being vegan and animal cruelty-free. ella + milla comes in many colors and is even PETA approved! 

Available at: ella + milla

Holistic Spaces Podcast, Episode 042: Clutter and Five Elements with Katherine Metz, Part 1








Q&A Sunday: Studying Feng Shui

Q&A Sunday - Studying Feng Shui.jpg

I am an interior designer. I would like to study feng shui to go deeply in that field so that would help me in my career. But I need to know: where can I study and get the perfect knowledge of that? Is the masters degree in feng shui? And how can I know that the certificate that I'll take is recognized worldwide? 

Marwa K., Lebanon

Hi Marwa

Thank you for your email - and what a wonderful question to share with the readers. I’m also so happy that as a designer, you’re interested in deepening into your profession with the study of feng shui. As an architect, I found myself in the same place many years ago. I was working on architectural interiors, and found that something was missing in my life. I started to learn meditation and yoga and started on my spiritual path...which very quickly led me to look at how I incorporate spirituality in all aspects of my life, including work. Chogyam Trungpa didn’t see a separation between the secular and the spiritual, between the scientific and the mystical. And by incorporating feng shui, I also began to see this line become fainter and start to disappear.

There is no “perfect” knowledge of feng shui, but you can begin by looking for teachers that are near you. I studied at the BTB Masters program in NYC. It’s really of the utmost importance to work with a living teacher who holds and passes down their feng shui lineage. First, we can keep that lineage alive. Second, the teachings are transmitted in this way. It’s not something you can read in a book without the assistance of a mentor. I found that the BTB Masters program was just what I needed. The teachers truly become mentors in your life. For instance, Rosalie Prinzvalli officiated my wedding! Steven Post so kindly read and edited my book as well as wrote the forward. Barry Gordon has been a tremendous support in my life. You can listen to podcasts where I’ve interviewed two of the teachers. At the BTB Masters program, it’s a 3-year commitment, and you receive a certification as a feng shui practitioner. I’ve also recently taught a class at the last BTB Masters session.

There are also other schools and resources. First maybe look at what feng shui school resonates with you. There’s BTB Feng shui and there are more classical schools. I also first look at what teachers inspire and motivate you. You can look at the International Feng Shui Guild for more resources there. There is no official certificate that’s recognized worldwide, nor is there an official degree in feng shui that I’m aware of. But again, I’d look at what is out there and what speaks to you. Personally, the BTB Masters program fell into my lap, and it really clicked with me, so I went with it. I had no need to shop around. And I can say with great conviction that I wouldn’t be where I am now had I not gone through that transformative program :)

by Anjie Cho

Thanks for reading our "Q&A Sunday".  We will be answering questions submitted by our readers. Click here to submit any Feng Shui or Green Design questions!