Archive for April, 2015

Aromatherapy Smudging

Author: Dr. Larita

When people think of aromatherapy, essential oils like lavender and patchouli usually come to mind. However, indigenous Native American Indians and many other traditional cultures around the world have used another type of aromatherapy for hundreds of years. Smudge stick sounds like something you would use to apply eye makeup with, but “smudging” is actually a method of aromatherapy employed by burning herbs, like dried sage or lavender, throughout a dwelling.

Some Native Americans believe the smoke created by burning some herbs has a cleansing affect, as well as cognitive, emotional and physical benefits. Some even believe “smudging” can act as a messenger to energies and realities beyond conscious comprehension and understanding. Just as many take a hot bath to refresh and relax their bodies, dedicated smudgers burn sage or sweetgrass to treat depression, anger, fear, grief and anxiety.

Smudge sticks can be found at many specialty health stores. To begin smudging use matches or a candle to light the stick, and blow on the flame to put out the fire. Let the smudge stick smolder. Once the smoke begins to fill the air, fan it towards the body. If you are allergic to smoke and feel you can not get the benefits of smudging, you can use a diffuser to achieve the same results without the smoke. You can use any essential oil to achieve the benefit you want.

When you hear the word mangos you probably think of a delicious fruit. Did you also know that mangos are great for skin care? Mangifera indica is a species of mango found in India that is well known for its soothing, moisturizing benefits. When turned into mango butter it can be applied like a cream.

Mango butter is an all-natural product rich in antioxidants. It is incredibly hydrating and can help skin conditions like eczema, rashes, dry cracked skins, minor cuts and burns, as well as soothe achy muscles. Plus, mango has a light sweet aroma that you’re sure to enjoy. Why would you want to put synthetic, over-processed chemical lotions on your skin when you can get better results from an all-natural product?

Essential oils are used by many cultures throughout the world for their healing properties. Some uses for the oils include increasing over-all well being and physical, emotional and mental health. Many essential oils can also stimulate the sex drive and work as powerful aphrodisiacs. So those looking to spice up their love lives should consider filling their oil diffusers with one of the following essential oils:

~Ylang Ylang oil energizes the body and intensifies sexual desire.

~Rose oil aids in hormone balance. This oil works best for women, but is also said to boost sexuality in men.

~Jasmine oil is said to have a counter-effect on frigidity, impotence and premature ejaculation. It also boosts energy levels.

~Sandalwood oil is said to aid in the treatment of impotence and help to relieve the anxiety that leads to frigidity. Sandalwood also produces something similar to androsterone, a male hormone secreted in the armpits as a sexual signal.

If you’re concerned with the quality of your skin, you most likely know that the skin on our faces tends to be particularly sensitive. It is also the most susceptible to the damaging effects of the sun as well as everyday dirt and grime. With all the negative things we subject our faces to every day, it’s important to use the right facial moisturizers.

But once you have that perfect moisturizer for your particular skin type, it’s still important to apply that moisturizer in the most effective way. To achieve the softest skin, make sure to apply the moisturizer in light, circular motions. And remember, if you have oily skin, the less massaging, the better. Massages stimulate oil glands and excessive rubbing will only make the problem worse. Take the most care around the eyes. Be particularly gentle, because pulling or rubbing that skin can cause premature sagging or wrinkles. Also make sure your moisturizer has sunscreen protection of at least 15 SPF. This will ensure that your moisturizer protects you all day.

Incense is the burning of fragrant biotic materials, often including essential oils, which release an aromatic smoke when burned. The term incense actually is derived from the Latin term incendere which means to burn and it refers to the substance being burned, not the fragrance itself. The use of incense probably originated in Ancient Egypt where the resins from aromatic trees and plants were burned for religious ceremonies. Incense is also used in aromatherapy, meditation, rituals for purification, for creating mood, and to mask bad smells.

There are two different burning methods for incense. First, there is the way most of us are familiar with, direct burning incense sticks or cones. The sticks or cones are lit with a flame which is then blown out leaving a burning tip to smolder and release the fragrance. The other way consists of indirect burning of materials that cannot be used without a separate heat source such as charcoal. You light the charcoal tablets or discs and then place the powder, resin, bark, or incense rocks directly on the burning coal. The type of incense you use depends on your preference but it is good to know that there are so many options and it is always fun to try new things.

Eliminating Dry Skin II

Author: Dr. Larita

handwashingNothing removes moisture from your skin quicker than cleansing. Whether it’s your hand soap, body soap or facial cleansers, the ingredients in your skin care cleansing products could be leaching the moisture from your skin. It’s very important that you steer clear of harsh detergents if you have dry skin. Use a gentle moisturizing soap to prevent and treat dry skin.

Constant hand washing will dry your hands quickly. Some people, like doctors, nurses and teachers must wash their hands continuously to guard against the germs in their working environment. To ease the effects of continuous hand washing, use lukewarm water, natural soap and a good skin moisturizer.


Eliminating Dry Skin

Author: Dr. Larita

facial moisturizer

Perfumes and fragrances in body care products have a tendency to irritate dry skin or make it worse. Do not use  deodorants and skin care products that are filled with chemicals and fragrances. Check the ingredients on the label for the word fragrance. Lotions and creams often do more harm than good when they are filled with perfumes. If the good ingredients that you are searching for in a body lotion or cream are towards the end of the list, there is only a minute amount in your product.  Look for products containing pure and natural ingredients with bean-based butters like cocoa butter and shea butter as the main ingredient. These products hydrate your skin and leave it feeling moisturized and wonderful. We will talk more about eliminating dry skin this week.

Skin Care Recipes

Author: Dr. Larita

mask1Are you tired of purchasing overpriced skin care products with too many ingredients that you can’t pronounce? The face mask that you purchased from the drug store may be convenient but it was probably made in a factory under unknown conditions over a year ago. You can start your own natural skin care regimen with inexpensive products that are natural and excellent for your skin. A homemade mask takes only a few minutes to put together and once you have the basic ingredients ready in a jar or carton, you can have your own instant face mask made specifically for your particular skin requirements. If you are ready to start making your own facial mask, this blog is for you.

This is a recipe for a purifying, toning, soothing and rejuvenating mask. First, let’s just make the basic mask recipe so you can have it on hand. Since we often have areas of dry skin, oily skin and normal skin, you can use this basic mask recipe with several different facial formulas. We will be using green clay which you can purchase at your local drugstore or health food store. The recipe calls for 2 ounces of green clay and 3 teaspoons of corn flour. Mix the clay and corn flour together in a jar and keep it ready for combining into one of several different mask formulas that we will describe later. You can also use 1 tablespoon of this basic formula with enough of the other liquids needed for a particular recipe to form a paste and then add your chosen essential oils when you are ready. For each recipe, you will blend the ingredients together to form a smooth paste and leave it on your skin for fifteen minutes. Rinse it off with warm water and apply a facial treatment oil such as grapeseed or almond oil. Dab the face with a tissue after applying the oil.

Mask Formula for Normal skin

  • 1 tablespoon basic mask
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon water
    Combine and use 1 drop
  • 2 drops geranium essential oil
  • 1 drop of rosewood essential oil

Anti-Aging Facial Masks

Author: Dr. Larita

facial masksFacial masks have beneficial effects for many skin types because they can nourish, rejuvenate, and stimulate; refine, cleanse, and peel off the outer skin layer; soothe and calm inflammation; clear acne, loosen blackheads; and act as an anti-wrinkle treatment and natural face-lift. For natural skin care, you can use practically any fruit or vegetable in your refrigerator and many other foodstuffs. You can purchase a flower water to blend your dry ingredients but I prefer to use plain spring water as the moisturizer with essential oils added for the properties they bring to the mixture.

Clay masks are wonderful because the clay has absorbed the sun and the plants and minerals of earth over thousands of years giving it rejuvenating and anti-aging benefits for our skin. Clays come in an assortment of colors from all over the world and can be found in health food stores and pharmacies. When we combine  the clay with essential oils they complement each other with a synergistic effect providing natural skin care that is highly beneficial. White kaolin clay is best used on normal to oily skin because it has an astringent effect. It removes impurities from the skin as it cleanses and it improves lymphatic flow, increasing blood circulation the the area. Fuller’s earth is a stimulating clay that is a soft brown in color. It is a cleansing clay plus it removes dead skin cells. It is useful on oily to normal skin only.

Morning Skin Care Tips

Author: Dr. Larita

facial cleansers2

The mad dash to get ready in the morning isn’t something that most people feel they can be leisurely about, but it is important because it sets the tone for your entire day.  This is also where you begin your self-care patterns each day.  Eating a nutritious breakfast is essential to optimum physical health, for example.  Morning skincare is equally important because this is where you make sure that your skin is protected against all you’ll encounter out there in the world – sun, dirt, pollution, etc.

Start each day by washing your face with a gentle cleanser followed by using a toning agent. Just as you never want to exfoliate your face in the morning (why open up all those pores only to expose them to dirt, dust and pollution), you always want to tone in the morning because this tightens and closes pores, protecting your face from the environment. Follow that with your moisturizer, and you’re set for the day in terms of skin care. If you will be out in the sun during the day, even if only for an hour, sunscreen is an excellent idea especially if you won’t be otherwise protected from the sun. In less than five minutes, you’ve made sure that you are starting the day fresh faced and that your face is ready for the big bad world it will surely encounter!

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