Angela Maxwell Is Walking Around the World for Women

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On May 2, 2014, with $12,000 saved, Angela Maxwell left her best friend’s home in Bend, Oregon, to start a five-year walk around the world. There’s no pre-approved path for the small ranks of pedestrian circumnavigators, the dozen or so people who’ve claimed they’ve walked around the world —so Maxwell devised her own route. She traveled the 175 miles to Portland, and then across western Australia. She next headed to Vietnam, where she hiked 60 miles from Da Nang to Hue and then spent three weeks recovering from dengue fever. A year into her circumnavigation, she arrived in Mongolia. One night, a two weeks’ hike from Mongolia’s capital city of Ulaanbaatar, in a valley surrounded by mountains, a stranger entered her tent and raped her. “It was the moment that every woman is afraid of before they go out into the world,” the 37-year-old former business consultant says. After the attack—“it was over in minutes,” Maxwell says—her assailant left. Maxwell packed her gear, hiked a few miles

Winter Is Coming. You'll Need a Good Lip Balm.

New Mexico is an amazing place to live. We have the best sunsets on the planet, our green chile kicks ass, and we’re way less crowded than our neighbors up north in Colorado. We do, however, have some downsides. One of which is the way our dry climate wreaks havoc on your skin. If you find yourself without lip balm, especially in winter, you can bet on tasting blood from the cracks that form as air yanks any and all moisture from your lips. Consider yourself warned.

I grew up here, so I learned the hard way. I then wised up and started tearing through any and all lip moisturizers I could get my hands on. It’s been a long journey, but I came across Stoked Goods’ Natural Lip and Face Balm ($16 for a two-pack) and my lips are finally happy.

The ingredients are not revolutionary. The balm has all the good stuff you’ll find in other all-natural lip refreshers: coconut oil to repair cracked skin, cocoa and shea butter to moisturize, and beeswax to help keep the wetness in. The big difference is the size. Each Stoked Goods tube is three times bigger than a normal-size ChapStick, which means one stick can get me through an entire ski season. That extra size also makes the tube significantly harder to lose. I know it’s in my pocket, and it doesn’t slip down to the very bottom of my bag. And the tube’s girth makes it much easier to grip and apply with gloves on while riding the lift. 

Because you get so much goodness in one tube, Stoked Goods rightly calls it a balm. You can apply it to your burnt nose, but also to your hands or any other piece of skin that needs a little moisture or repair. It’s not as good as hand repair lotion, but a little Stoked Goods as a spot treatment on your knuckles prevents painful and repetitive cracking. 

Finally, I’m always glad that Stoked Goods comes in a biodegradable tube. Lip balm containers are by no means the biggest culprits when it comes to our plastic problem, but they’re not helping. It’s nice to know that after my Stoked Goods balm is done keeping my lips and skin in good working condition, the container won’t cause any environmental problems.  

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