Archive for January, 2015

Razor bumps are common for 30 to 40 % of men with coarse or curly hair and especially common for black men. Shaving hair with a blade, can cut the hair at an angle making it sharp. Curly hair then sometimes curls back toward the skin and can puncture the skin and become ingrown. This leads to red bumps and skin irritation, which can be very painful for some men. The technical name for razor bumps is pseudofolliculitis barbae (often abbreviated PFB).


The following steps may reduce your chance of suffering from razor bumps:

  • Make sure to get your hair very wet before shaving, ideally after taking a bath or shower. If you don’t shower first, wet your hair for at least two minutes with warm, soapy water. Wet hair cuts better and easier than dry hair, and is more likely to cut evenly (and not at an angle).
  • Use a good shaving cream to reduce friction and irritation. I suggest a  gel or moisturizing shaving cream for sensitive skin. Really work the shaving cream into your scalp or face  for at least two minutes, and save areas that tend to develop bumps for last when you’re shaving, so that the shaving cream has longer to soften the hair.
  • Shave with the grain, not against it.
  • Don’t go over the same area more than twice.
  • Don’t stretch out your skin while shaving; let is stay neutral and relaxed. Stretching your skin while you shave increases the chance that the hair will ‘snap back’ to below skin level.
  • Replace your blade regularly. Shaving with a dull blade increases the chances of hair tearing unevenly.
  • There are some good inexpensive disposable razors on the market that can be purchased at most discount grocery stores or drug stores. I recommend the Bic Advance III, it has 3 blades and a lotion or gel moisturizing strip. You should not use it any more than 3 times.
  • After shaving apply an astringent or toner like alcohol or witch hazel. To further improve your skin apply an essential oil mixture, like the one listed below:Lavender – 10 drops
    Chamomile – 10 drops
    Calendula – 5 drops
    Diluted in 4 teaspoons evening primrose oil.

Some people who suffer from razor bumps might prefer using a depilatory (like Nair or Neet) instead of a razor. Depilatories work by dissolving the hair so it can be washed off. The chemicals used in depilatories are strong, and may cause irritation, therefore we strongly discourage their use.


If you’re already suffering from razor bumps, keep the following points in mind:

  • Before anything else, let your hair grow out for a while and give your skin a rest before shaving again (a minimum of three days).
  • Bumps can get infected fairly easily, so tend to them immediately. Wash your face using a good natural soap and using antibacterial essential oils such as lavender or tea tree oil will probably help, especially if there’s a cut.
  • Don’t pick at or squeeze bumps. That will tend to make things worse.

I work in an office with hundreds of other people. It is a large open building with lots of cubicles. There are lots of sneezes every day. One lady sneezes 4 times every time she sneezes. We all count them and then say, “Bless you!” The guy in the cubicle next to mine only sneezes once but, gosh, it sure does sound wet, if you know what I mean. I know he doesn’t have any tissue because he often borrows one from me. I don’t mind that, but what about when he doesn’t borrow one? I wonder if he is covering his mouth – it really doesn’t sound like it and by the time he borrows the tissue, he has already sneezed and the germs are floating in the air.

That just goes to show that working in an air conditioned office can be hazardous to your health. The “Office Environment Survey” sponsored by the Health Promotion Research Trust, reported that 80% of the 4,000 workers surveyed stated that they felt sick when they worked in a particular office. Below are some of the most common illnesses and the essential oils to use to dispel them:

  • Lethargy/sluggishness – grapefruit, eucalyptus, lemon
  • Stuffy nose – tea tree, rosemary
  • Dry throat – grapefruit, lemon
  • Dry and itchy eyes – tea tree (in a humidifier)
  • Headaches – lavender

While I can’t have a humidifier or diffuser in the office, I’ve been using a plant spray bottle with 10 drops each of  lemon, grapefruit and tea tree blended in 2 cups of water. When someone close to me sneezes, I spray one squirt in my cubicle. I don’t do it every time because I know that tea tree is not a wonderful smell but I think I will start spraying more often, now that I have read the study mentioned above.

I am a retired educator and during my years in the schools, I saw many children miss too much school because of earaches. Recurrent earaches could be a sign of a perforated eardrum or an infection and the child should see a pediatrician. However, for a common earache, use one teaspoon of warm sweet almond oil with one drop of lavender and one drop of chamomile added and blended well. Soak  a small cotton ball in the mixture and use it to plug the ear.

You can also massage around the ear area, up the neck and across the cheekbone with the following mixture diluted in 1 teaspoon of almond oil:

  1. Tea tree – 3 drops
  2. Thyme – 1 drop
  3. Lavender – 2 drops

If a child in your care is prone to having earaches, these alternative remedies are very helpful and also inexpensive.

Miracle Black Seed Oil

Author: Dr. Larita

egypt danceBlack seed or Nigella Sativa is cultivated in Russia, Turkey, Egypt, Arabia, Oman, Ethiopia, Middle East, India, Bangladesh, France, and Germany. It is also known as black seed oil, Kalonji or the seed of blessing. This is a specialty oil that is popular in preparations for acne, burns and wrinkles. It is dark in color with a pungent herbal scent and is often used in middle eastern cooking as a spice or a topping. I first became aware of its edible use when I tasted Naan bread, which I love, and other pastries that use this seed.

Black seeds are extremely beneficial as a food in many aspects of health, both healing and preventative. It has been used traditionally in the Middle East and Southeast Asian countries to treat ailments including asthma, bronchitis, rheumatism and related inflammatory diseases; to increase milk production in nursing mothers; to promote digestion and to fight parasitic infections. Black seed oil has been used to treat skin conditions such as eczema and boils and it is also used to treat symptoms of the common cold. More than 200 university studies conducted since 1959 have confirmed many traditional uses of this powerful seed with anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine properties among them.

Black seed oil is a rich source of essential fatty acids – omega 3 and omega 6, the building blocks of cells and is commonly used for the relief of acne, psoriasis, eczema and pain. It is also commonly used in joint massage and headache. Black seed oil is said by some to be “Cleopatra’s beauty secret.” The Prophet Mohammad, peace on him, stated that black seed oil cures every illness except death. The black seed was also found in the Egyptian Pharoah Tutankhamen’s tomb.


Lavender Essential Oil

Author: Dr. Larita

If you have no other one, lavender essential oil is the most basic oil to have in your home because it is extremely effective in treating burns and scalds. In either case, it can be put directly on the affected area right away.

Lavender’s properties of antiseptic, antibiotic, antidepressant, detoxifier and sedative allow healing to occur more quickly and prevent scarring. It also accelerates the immune system and speeds the healing process because it stimulates the wound’s cells to rejuvenate more quickly. The next time you burn yourself in the kitchen, put a drop or two of lavender on it two to four times a day until it is healed.

In ancient times, cedar wood oil was used by the Egyptians to preserve mummies. Now it is often used for stress reduction. It also works well as an expectorant and antiseptic. The aroma of cedar wood is woodsy and spicy but it also has a medicinal odor. This pure essential oil is great to use in massage oils and can also be used to treat diseases like arthritis, eczema and acne.

Chamomile is known for its calming aspects. It is often used to ease symptoms of irritable-bowel syndrome and menstrual cramps. Insomnia and anxiety sufferers can benefit from the sedative qualities of chamomile. It is also an antiseptic used to sooth skin irritations.

Cajeput pure essential oil smells a bit like camphor and is pale yellow in color. Using cajeput can benefit muscle aches, oily skin, asthma, coughs, bronchitis and sinusitis.

Having moist, supple skin is the product of both hydration and a good skin care regimen. Not drinking enough water daily could lead to dry, sagging skin, eczema, cracked flaky skin, acne and pimples.

Stay hydrated with water-rich foods: cucumbers, 97% water; tomatoes and zucchini, 95% water; peaches, 87% water; and grains, beans, and pastas are also good sources of water because they absorb a lot of water as they cook. Use a good quality chemical-free natural moisturizing product to keep your skin moisturized on the outside too.

Coconut Oil Pulling

Author: Dr. Larita

coconut2I know that coconut oil is good for you. My daughters go to Jamaica once a year and they have become coconut oil disciples. They use it for everything from cooking to hair preparation. I recently came across a new use for this versatile product that I am going to try for myself. It is called “oil pulling.”

Oil pulling is simply the process of swishing a tablespoon of organic, cold pressed and extra virgin oil in your mouth for a whole 20 minutes. You can use any kind of oil but coconut or sesame are reportedly the best. The practice of oil pulling is said to remove toxins from your body as well as aiding in your general well being. It aids in oral hygiene, clears skin problems, relieves sinus pressure, aids the lymphatic system, decreases body and organ toxicity, regulates menstrual cycles, alleviates allergies, relieves migraines/headaches, reduces insomnia, improves vision, corrects hormonal imbalance and many other health benefits.

Aromatherapy is a kind of alternative medicine that makes use of essential oils and other aromatics extracted from plant materials in order to affect the person’s health or mood. Aromatherapy is also widely used for its soothing effect to the body. Thus, those who need to improve their mood and calm their stressed muscles—preferably after a stressful time or work—best consider the use of aromatherapy. For some, it is also used to add a sweet fragrance to their homes.

You can actually make your own aromatherapy recipes using different aromatherapy supplies such as essential oils, aromatherapy diffusers, massage oils, and lotions. Just make sure that all the supplies and raw ingredients you will use are of top quality for best efficacy. If what you want is to spread the scent of the aromatic ingredients, you can place them in hot baths to release the scent and let them linger in every corner of your place.

You are currently browsing the Natural Body Guru weblog archives for January, 2015.


January 2015