Archive for July, 2016

All Over Moisturizer

Author: Dr. Larita

Most women know enough to moisturize their faces as part of a normal skin care routine. They may even remember to put lotion on their elbows and knees. The truth is, all of our skin gets thirsty.

I advise women (and men) to keep a bottle of skin lotion next to their shower or bath. When you get out of the shower or tub, pat dry, and apply moisturizer liberally all over, especially after shaving. Within a week you’ll notice an improvement to the texture and overall appearance of your skin.

Women’s Gold

Author: Dr. Larita

Another name for shea butter is “women’s gold” because the job of  extracting the butter from shea nuts gives employment and income to many rural African village women. Shea butter is used in foods and cooking as well as soaps and beauty products because it is so safe and beneficial. It also contains natural ingredients that protect skin from the sun.

African women and healers have known about and used shea butter for thousands of years. Its properties are so amazing it is almost magical in its healing effects on burns, skin conditions, ulcerated skin, stretch marks, and dryness. The vegetable fats in shea butter promote cell regeneration and circulation making it a superb revitalizer for troubled or aging skin.

body oilsI used different types of perfumes for many years before I eventually ended up realizing that I was allergic to this kind of a substance. Perfumes would make me sneeze and cough which made wearing them just about impossible. If I wanted to wear some kind of a fragrance, I would have to sacrifice my ability to breathe well which wasn’t really worth it.

I started looking at some natural ways that I would be able to make myself smell a lot better. I checked several different types of fragrances and spent some time comparing the different types of oils that I could potentially try. I eventually decided to start wearing some different types of body oils because these were much more natural than synthetic fragrances.

When I started to use these, I was really impressed with how amazing they smelled. I had expected the scent to possibly be too subtle, but after the first time using it, I learned that these oils could easily be very overpowering. When I just use a small amount I am able to smell good while being able to breathe as well. It is so nice to be able to have this kind of a fragrance.

“Get Better Bruise!” Blendkids2

This blend is made in a 1 oz glass bottle.

You can apply it onto the bruise right after it forms, and then every 15 to 30 minutes for the first day. After the first day, apply it 3 to 5 times a day until the bruise is all gone.

  • 1 oz  trauma oil (trauma oil is an infusion of three herbs in a carrier oil: arnica, St. John’s wort, and calendula.)
  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 drops frankincense essential oil

For kids under five:

1 oz (30 ml) of pure trauma oil will do the trick!

No-More-Itch Stick for Bug Bites

These itch sticks are especially soothing! You can use them as needed, and kids can even carry them around to use anytime their bites start itching.

You can make your itch sticks in lotion bar containers, which twist up like lip balm tubes. You’ll need two lotion bar containers, each holding 1 oz (30 ml).

  • ½ oz  beeswax
  • 1 oz  coconut oil
  • ½ oz  jojoba wax
  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 3 drops cedarwood essential oil


  1. Melt the beeswax in a Pyrex measuring cup using the “double boiler method.” (Put the Pyrex in a soup pot about ¼ full of water. Bring the water to a slow boil. I like to leave the handle of the Pyrex hanging outside the pot so it doesn’t get too hot to touch!)
  2. Add the jojoba wax.
  3. Add the coconut oil.
  4. Remove the Pyrex from heat and add your essential oils.
  5. Pour your melted blend into your lotion bar sticks and let them solidify for a few hours.

For kids under five:

Make a blend in a 2 oz  glass spray bottle using:

I recommend making this blend fresh every few weeks.

There are different approaches to using essential oils with little children.

The Aromahead Approach for kids under five is extra cautious. For topical use we prefer to use hydrosols, butters, and carrier oils.

Babies’ and young children’s skin can be so sensitive that essential oils can easily become overwhelming for them. Hydrosols, butters, and carrier oils can often give a child the nudge they need towards rebalancing their health.

That said, there are exceptions. For example, if a child is stung by a bee (assuming they’re not allergic to bees), you can add 2 drops of lavender to ½ oz of aloe vera gel. Apply it to the sting until the pain and swelling calms down, then switch to lavender hydrosol.

Now, thanks to Andrea Butje at Aromahead, you’re all set to enjoy summer!

kids plyngKids love summertime! For many of them, summer is the peak season for playing outside. The tiny downside of running around and having so much fun is that they can wind up with more bites, bruises, scrapes, and stings than at other times of the year. So I wanted to share some recipes from Andrea Butje’s Aromahead Blog that you can use to make your own “Aromatherapy First Aid Kit” for kids.

There are three recipes:

  • A cuts and scrapes blend
  • A bruise relief blend
  • A bug bite itch stick

This “Aromatherapy First Aid Kit” is for kids who are about five years old and bigger.

Ouch-Away Blend for Cuts and Scrapes

Make this blend in a 2 oz glass bottle. You can also make it in a spray bottle. The carrier is aloe vera gel, and that works just as well in either bottle.

This recipe is so soothing for cuts and scrapes, and the essential oils help to reduce germs and the risk of infection. You can apply it immediately after the cut happens, and then 3 to 5 times a day until the cut is healed. I suggest making a fresh bottle every few weeks.

  • 2 oz  aloe vera gel
  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 4 drops frankincense essential oil

For kids under five:

  • 1 oz Lavender hydrosol
  • 1/2 oz  frankincense hydrosol
  • 1/2 oz  tea tree hydrosol

We will have two more recipes tomorrow.

Chronic back pain can come from specific physical reasons such as a slipped disc, lumbago, sciatica, or fibrositis and there are often medical remedies for these types of back problems. More often, back pain is the result of the strains of daily life. It may come from lifting heavy boxes, gardening, sitting at a keyboard all day, bad posture or even from lugging in the groceries after shopping. Falls and whiplash can come back years later in the form of back pain too.

Essential oils can greatly relieve chronic back pain. They penetrate deeply into contracted muscles encouraging them to expand and they increase blood flow to the area and the muscle tissues needing to be repaired by the body. The best way to use essential oils for this purpose is in a synergistic blend although you can use any of the oils alone. All three of the following synergistic blends are wonderful for alleviating back pain.

Synergistic Blend I

  • 10 drops of rosemary
  • 10 drops of marjoram
  • 10 drops of sage
Synergistic Blend II
  • 10 drops of lavender
  • 10 drops of eucalyptus
  • 10 drops of ginger
Synergistic Blend III
  • 10 drops of peppermint
  • 10 drops of rosemary
  • 10 drops of basil
Dilute the 30 drops of your synergistic blend in 2 tablespoons of your favorite carrier oil. Massage eases any kind of back pain although you may need to get a friend to do it for you. If no one is available to help, you can massage your lower back on your own but the upper back is more difficult although it can be done. Ice massage is very helpful for treating lumbago, sciatica and fibrositis which are often caused by sitting in one position for too long (that’s where my pain is coming from!) You just need to freeze several Styrofoam cups with water, freeze them and then cut the cup down so there is about 2 inches of ice protruding. Massage in a circular pattern over the sore areas in your back.

Facial 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.

Green clay is the best of the clays and it can be used on all skin types. It is good for treating acne and other skin disturbances as well as providing an anti-aging effect for mature skin. Green clay balances combination skin, normalizes oily skin and revitalizes dry skin. It is rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, and sodium and energizes connective tissue. It stimulates very gently and it is effective in increasing the lymph flow and circulation allowing oxygen to speed the elimination of waste products.

diffusersWhen I first started to work on making my house smell a lot nicer, I immediately thought of the different types of chemical air fresheners that were available. I tried these in my home for a while, but they seemed to be far too potent for me to use them in my home all of the time. I decided right away to stop using these in my home.

I started to look for something that might be a bit more natural and more mild so that I didn’t end up feeling like my home was being overpowered by chemicals. I was able to find a lot of natural essential oils that I would just need a diffuser to use. These would be so much nicer for me to be able to use on a regular basis than the nasty air fresheners.

I looked at several different types of diffusers before I was able to find the one that I would like to use in my home. Once I found the right kind of diffuser, I chose to purchase it right away just so that I would be able to start diffusing oils in my home. It is wonderful to walk in through the door of my home to enjoy this lovely smell.

Citrus essential oil and slice of ripe fruits: orange, lemon and lime fruits

Essential oils are a huge part of a natural beauty routine. Often touted for their aroma therapeutic properties, sometimes the topical benefits are overlooked. Essential oils, Absolutes and CO2 extracts are not only beneficial for beauty purposes but also to heal wounds, bug bites and irritating skin conditions. Here are some of the most popular ones.

  • Sweet Orange Oil – This sweet citrus promotes the production of collagen as well as increase the blood flow to the skin which can help with fade spots and wrinkles and is helpful at soothing dry, irritated skin. Citrus provide high levels of vitamin c that heal and protect skin. Sweet orange oil also decreases the rate of damage from environmental factors such as uv rays, pollution and toxins. Orange oil is also uplifting and calming which can brighten your mood and balance your hormones.
  • Lemon Oil – Lemon oil is cold-pressed from the lemon rind and contains d-limonene, a powerful cancer fighting antioxidant. It increases luster of dull skin and is detoxifying and rejuevenating. It can help reduce acne with it’s astringent qualities and nourishes dry damaged skin. Like orange oil, it contains high amounts of vitamin C which heal and protect skin.
  • Neroli – This favorite of mine is an intoxicating cross between floral and citrus scents. It is made from the delicate flowers of the bitter orange tree that are hand-picked and handled with great care. It’s fantastic for mature and sensitive skin because it repairs skin at the cellular level. Neroli tones the complexion and improves elasticity which diminishes wrinkles, scars and stretch marks. It’s highly regenerative, calming, improves circulation, balances oily skin and calms sensitive skin with it’s anti-microbial properties.
  • Bergamot Bergamot is cold-pressed oil from the peel of the bergamot fruit(a cross between a lemon and an orange). It’s a mood enhancer and is especially wonderful at healing acne and infected pores due to it’s anti-bacterial qualities. effective toner and skin balancer as well as a treatment for eczema and psoriasis, scars and dark spots.
  • Lemongrass – Lemongrass has antimicrobial, antibacterial, antiseptic, and anti-fungal properties which detoxify, heal acne and brighten skin. Perfect for use as a toner and to strengthen skin tissues.
  • GingerGinger oil comes from the ginger root but is a more potent source of benefits because it has a higher concentration of gingerol. Ginger contains a high level of anti-oxidants that prevent free radical damage and premature aging. It’s also highly antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial which make it a great addition to acne treatments or skin sensitivity issues and allergies.

Thanks to Argan Republic

essential oils5Here are Emily’s top 5 favorite essential oils for allergies:

1. Tea Tree Oil

Nobody in my house likes the smell of tea tree oil, not even me. However, it works wonders for stuffy heads and watery eyes. There are a lot of people that do like the aroma that tea tree gives off though so it’s a win/win for those folks.

Tea tree oil can be used for a lot of different ailments. I definitely recommend tea tree oil to have on hand at all times.

2. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil is strong and effective when you need to unclog or cleanse. Personally, I love the smell of eucalyptus. I use it for my son and myself all the time, especially since we live in a house with stachybotrys (black mold).

Aside from the ways that I mentioned above, I also will sprinkle 2-3 drops of eucalyptus oil on our pillows when we are fighting allergies. It’s especially helpful in relaxing inflamed passages so that it’s easier to get a good nights sleep.

I have also bought dried eucalyptus leaves at our local IGA and boiled them in water on the stove when I ran out of eucalyptus oil. It also worked very well but I’m still partial to my oils.

3. Peppermint Oil

Peppermint is another oil that I would recommend to have in your essential oil collection. It’s use goes far beyond therapeutic purposes. Peppermint oil can also be used for many ways around the house, including a natural ant and rodent deterrent.

Peppermint oil has been said to help reduce pressure and tension, which comes in handy for sinus headaches. I have used peppermint oil for headaches before and have had much success. I really want to buy a diffuser necklace that isn’t bulky so that I can add peppermint oil to it. Peppermint oil is one of my favorite scents and I also get a lot of headaches.

4. Lavender Oil

Lavender oil is probably most known for making you fall asleep faster. Along with providing you with tranquility, lavender oil can help soothe your passageways when they flare up. Lavender is a mentally and physically soothing oil that has a very potent and pretty floral smell to it.

5. Lemon Oil

Lemon oil is actually an all-natural antihistamine (reduces inflammation). There’s no surprise that lemon oil is strong and potent, either. Burning lemon oil always helps me focus better and seems to declutter a lot of the brain fog that I battle.

You can also get creative with your oils when you burn them or aromafy. Add 1-2 drops of lemon, peppermint, and lavender to concoct a cocktail of aromatherapy bliss.

Thanks to Emily from The Unextreme

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July 2016