Dry Skin Relief

Author: Dr. Larita
09/23/2020

Are you confused about whether to use an ointment, a lotion or a cream to relieve your dry skin? These terms describe the way skin care products are prepared. Ointments are prepared using oil and may stay on your skin longer but many people don’t like them because they are  greasy and don’t soak into the skin. Creams are less oily than ointments and can be made from natural products so they do soak into the skin easily. Lotions are water-based and get absorbed into the skin quickly, causing instant, but not long-lasting, relief. For longer-lasting relief, choose ointments or creams.

If you have dry or itchy skin, avoid using too much soap, antiperspirants,  hot baths or anything else that removes your natural oils. Skin dryness and itchiness is worse when the humidity is low and you should definitely avoid stress, too much exposure to the sun, and smoking or secondhand smoke.


Aromatherapy and romance are natural partners so it is logical that the seventh part in our series of essential oil uses in the home concerns the bedroom.  If you want essential oils that will keep your bedroom smelling dreamy and enhance the romantic experience, you will want to make a special blend and keep it separate from the regular household essential oil formulas. For a synergistic romantic bedroom blend, spray the following formula in the air and on carpets: 8 drops palma rosa, 1 drop ylang-ylang, 2 drops clary-sage, 2 drops nutmeg, and 4 drops of lime mixed in 2 ½ cups of water.

  • Other great scents of a more general nature to use in the bedroom include chamomile, geranium, lavender, or lemon.
  • If you have trouble sleeping, use a diffuser with a relaxing oil like chamomile or clary-sage on it.
  • You can also wash, dry and store your linens with essential oils (see Essential Oils at Home V) to aid sleep.
  • Put a cotton ball with one drop of your favorite scent on it in the corners of your bedroom closet.
  • Use essential oils on drawer liners and also line the floor of your closet. Don’t use more than one or two drops of oil because you just want a subtle aroma to keep the air fresh, not enough to interfere with your perfume.


Essential oils can be used in the living room to freshen carpets, curtains, and furniture. Make a carpet freshener powder by mixing 1 drop of your favorite essential oil per tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda or borax powder. Add the essential oil to the powder and mix it well in a blender. Allow the mixture to sit overnight before using it the first time. You can make as much as you want to have on hand and store it in a zip lock bag or a sealed jar. To use the carpet freshener, sprinkle it on your carpet, leave it there for a few minutes, then vacuum. You can also add the powder directly to your vacuum bag to stop odor; add 8 drops of essential oil to a cotton ball and put it inside the bag each time you change it; or simply add 8 drops of essential oil directly onto the bag.

To get rid of streaks on freshly cleaned windows, bunch up a sheet of newspaper, put a drop of lemon, lime or grapefruit essential oil on it and polish the glass with this combination. The essential oil soaks into the newspaper and combined with the newsprint it removes streaks and creates a sparkling finish. You get an added bonus when the sun hits the glass and warms the essential oil releasing a subtle fragrance into the living room.

Make your own furniture polish and banish chemicals and synthetic fragrances from your home with this recipe: melt 8 ounces of plain unrefined beeswax in a double boiler, add 2 1/2 cups of room temperature turpentine and put it aside. Boil 2 1/2 cups water and add 2 ounces of grated pure soap (purchase at the health food store) or grated castile soap and stir until melted, then sit it aside until it is cool but still warm. Slowly add the warm soap and water to the beeswax and turpentine a little at a time stirring constantly. Now add 10 drops of the essential oil of your choice and blend the entire mixture well. Store your furniture polish in a tin can or a small ice cream carton (a Ben and Jerry’s carton will work well and you get to eat the ice cream first.) You only need a small amount at a time to polish your furniture and you will be greatly rewarded for your work by the fragrance of the essential oil and the shine of your furniture.

Lastly, you can use a plant mister spray filled with 2 1/2 cups of water and 8 drops of essential oil to freshen  furniture, curtains, and carpets. Since the living room is where you spend time with family and friends you will want to choose the right blend of essential oils. A calming synergistic blend includes 8 drops geranium, 3 drops clary-sage, 5 drops lemon, and 3 drops bergamot. A stimulating blend to use on a lazy afternoon includes 8 drops of grapefruit, 4 drops lavender, 4 drops lime and 2 drops of basil.


Before washers and driers, our ancestors laid their clothes on lavender or rosemary plants to dry so that the scent would permeate the garments. Today we can use essential oils in the washer, dryer, drawers, and closets to keep our clothes smelling nice and to receive even more benefits.

Add 3-5 drops of lemongrass or lavender to your rinse cycle water for wonderfully fresh smelling clothes. For a more alluring fragrance, add ylang-ylang essential oil to the final rinse. During the cold and flu season rinse your bed linens with eucalyptus, rosemary, or pine essential oil to relieve coughs throughout the night. Use a rinse of peppermint essential oil when your children have whooping cough. If insomnia is a problem, rinse linen and nightwear with marjoram, chamomile, or sweet orange blossom essential oil to aid sleep.

Add 2 drops of essential oil to a 4 inch square piece of material and put it in the dryer with your clothes. To infuse your garments with a fresh scent use lavender, rosemary, or bergamot; for a floral scent use geranium, or palma rosa; for a romantic or exotic scent use ylang-ylang, jasmine, or rose essential oil.

Other uses for essential oils with clothing include:

  • Making a natural moth repellent by placing cotton balls with lavender, lemongrass, camphor, or rosemary essential oil on them between clothes in drawers.
  • Making fragrant drawer liners with no chemicals by cutting blotting paper to drawer size and dotting it with essential oils. Brush the paper with orris root powder which acts as a fixative and then shake the powder off and place the liner in your drawer.
  • Making a synergistic blend of 3 drops lavender, 2 drops sage and 5 drops of rosemary essential oil to add to sneakers and repel odor. Add this blend to a tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda and mix well. Sprinkle the mixture into sneakers and leave overnight for fresh smelling shoes the next morning. Don’t forget to tap the soda out in the morning or you will be walking around with puffs of smoke coming out of your shoes.


Kitchen smells run the gamut from the wonderful aroma of freshly baked cookies to the stinky smell of burnt popcorn. Kitchens have a trash area where garbage is tossed, a spot for wet coats and muddy boots, and a corner for dog bedding and the cat’s litter box. Essential oils are a natural alternative to commercial air sprays because they cleanse the air for you instead of masking odors; they are harmless to food, humans, and the ozone; and many of them are antibiotic and antifungal so they may even help keep you from getting sick.

  • To cleanse kitchen surfaces add 4-6 drops of any one of the following essential oils to one pint of water: eucalyptus, lavender, lemon, lime, grapefruit, pine, or lemongrass. For a kitchen synergistic blend combine the following essential oils: 10 drops lavender, 15 drops lemon, and 5 drops eucalyptus. This mixture is disinfectant, antibacterial, and leaves a lovely fragrance when used on kitchen surfaces. You can add 8 drops of this formula to 2 1/2 cups of water in a plant spray bottle to spray the air or surfaces.
  • To kill germs on dishtowels soak them in a bowl of boiling water and 1 drop of eucalyptus, thyme, tea tree, or lavender. Let the towels soak  until the water is cool then wash as usual. This will keep your towels germ and bacteria free.
  • To lighten the chore of dishwashing and uplift your spirits at the same time, add 5 drops lime, 3 drops bergamot, 2 drops lavender, and 1 drop orange essential oil to your dishwashing liquid. The natural aroma of these essential oils will make a boring task take on a much lighter note. If you use a dishwasher, simply add 2 drops of lemon essential oil to the detergent you use in your machine and stir it before closing the door.

Essential oils lose their therapeutic properties after about two years but do not toss them out! Put two drops at a time down kitchen drains to create a nice scent when hot water runs down. Also use them in the water you use to wash windows and trashcans both inside and out. Essential oils make kitchen work safer and much more pleasant.


Many rooms in a home or apartment open onto the hallway and the scents from each room mingle to form a unique aroma that is distinct to that home. Most hallways have no windows so smells linger and fill the area with stale air creating a kind of aroma smog. Hallways need a fresh pleasant fragrance rather than the spicy herb scented aroma of the kitchen or the heavily scented oils that might be used in other rooms.

A good suggestion for a hallway fragrance is the citrus oils of grapefruit, lemon, lime or bergamot essential oil. Any of these oils can be blended with lavender to give an uplifting aspect or geranium to impart a calming effect. Use the geranium when company is coming because it will make them feel good as soon as they enter your home. If someone has a cold or flu, add 2 to 3 drops of rosemary to the citrus base using a total of 8 drops of essential oil in 2 1/2 cups of water in a plant-spray bottle. Spray the carpet and stairs in your hallway to help freshen up the entire area.

Hallways get a lot of traffic and are likely  to gather dust and scuff marks. Washing down the paintwork and baseboards is much more pleasant when you use the uplifting aroma of citrus essential oils, especially when you know that they are also antiseptic, disinfectant and can play other useful roles.


In today’s world most of us are very conscious of what we are doing to the earth’s ozone layer with commercial aerosol air fresheners. When you use essential oils to scent your home, you are providing your family with a much better option and your home will have a delightful aroma. You can scent your home with essential oils in the following ways:

  • Use  about 8 drops of essential oil to 2 1/2 cups of water and spray as finely as possible towards curtains and carpets. Test curtain and wood materials before spraying to avoid water stains.
  • Purchase a light bulb ring or use one drop of essential oil directly on a light bulb in a standing lamp. Make certain the light is turned off before applying the oil because essential oils are flammable. Once the oil is applied, turn on the light and the heat from the bulb will release the scent into the room.
  • Turn a log fire into a fragrant event by applying one drop of essential oil (try cypress, pine, sandalwood, or cedarwood) to each log. Your guests will think you are using imported wood for your fire!
  • Diffusers are an easy effective way to scent a room. Wipe them clean before applying a different oil or blend. If you don’t have a diffuser, place a bowl of boiling water with 5-6 drops of essential oil in a centrally located place in the room. Remove the bowl when the water cools and keep it out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Add 4 drops of essential oil to a cotton ball and place it close to your heat source in winter months or put as many drops as you like in a humidifier.


The first impression of your home is the aroma that greets guests as they enter. This first sniff says a lot about your household, whether there are pets and smokers, the kind of food cooked there, etc. Real estate agents are becoming more aware of the importance of aromatherapy and have started advising their clients to create a homey atmosphere when trying to sell their house by baking cookies or bread and putting on a fresh pot of coffee when expecting home viewers.

If you are not a baker, you might want to know that a few drops of clary-sage or lemon essential oil will put your new home buyers or any guests at ease. They might comment, “Your home has such a lovely relaxed atmosphere, we don’t know why.” You can rest assured it is because of the scent of clary-sage or lemon essential oil that you have in your diffuser!


Essential oils are extremely potent and most of them must be diluted with a carrier or base oil. Oils used in aromatherapy penetrate the skin, so they need to be diluted  properly so you reap the best benefits from your massage session. A carrier oil is basically used to carry the essential oil and open the gateway for them to make an entry into the skin and render the health benefits from your aromatherapy session. These carrier oils are also referred to as cold-pressed vegetable oils and they are easily absorbed into the skin. Some types of aromatherapy carrier oils include almond, coconut, jojoba, grape seed, aloe vera and olive oil. Almond oil is also a great moisturizer and suitable for all skin types.

Most of the oils that we find in grocery stores are heated, and not cold pressed, so they have less health benefits. You or your therapist has to balance your aromatherapy carrier oil with the essential oil to maximize the health benefits of your session. Of course, there are also many recipes for essential oil use and the recipe usually gives you a choice of the carrier oil to use plus how much essential oil and carrier oil to use.


Natural Sunscreen

Author: Dr. Larita
09/10/2020

Everyone knows to put sunscreen on when you go to the beach, but what about every day? Even in the winter, your skin is exposed to harmful UV rays. In fact, it’s the everyday sun rays we get that can cause the most damage. UV rays damage your skin and lead to premature aging. In fact, too much sun exposure can zap moisture from the skin, making the oil glands work overtime, which leads to pimples and acne.

To combat UV related skin issues, apply at least SPF-15 to your skin in a thick layer and be prepared to reapply frequently throughout the day – that’s right, once a day is not enough! Use a moisturizer before you apply the sunscreen to your face – or better yet, grab a moisturizer that has natural sunscreen properties in it. Plan to reapply at least 3 times during the day for maximum protection. If you are going to be outside most of the day, put a heavier SPF on to ensure protection. SPF-15 only offers full protection for 15 minutes.

 


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