Skin

Coconut Sugar Body Scrubs

Body Scrub Jar Contents Closeup

These are homemade sugar scrubs, straight from nature’s pantry. These scrubs should last you at least two months if not longer. All you need, beyond coconut oil and sugar, are some cute jars and a label. Add the ingredients found in one of the following variations to create a variety of scent combinations, or invent your own!

Coconut Sugar Scrub

Ingredients

½ cup white or brown sugar

¼ cup coconut oil

Method

Mix all ingredients and store in an air tight jar.

Use one tablespoon of the mixture as needed in the shower. Scrub skin with the mixture and rinse will. This awesome scrub will leave your skin feeling soft and smooth.


Brown Sugar Variations

Spicy Cinnamon Scrub

½ teaspoon vitamin E oil

½ teaspoon cinnamon

Vanilla Scrub

½ teaspoon vitamin E oil

1 teaspoon vanilla essential oil or real vanilla extract


White Sugar Variations

Lemon Hand Scrub

½ teaspoon vitamin E oil

15-20 drops (or more) of lemon or bergomot essential oil

This is great after washing dishes.

Vanilla Lavender Relaxing Scrub

½ teaspoon vitamin E oil

1 teaspoon vanilla essential oil or real vanilla extract

15 drops lavender essential oil

Relaxing Rose Scrub

½ teaspoon vitamin E oil

½ teaspoon rose essential oil

Psoriasis and High Frequency Electrotherapy

High Frequency Electrotherapy MachinePsoriasis is a very common chronic skin disorder. It causes skin cells to reproduce too quickly resulting in thick, dry, scaly patches that can be red, white, or almost silver in color. These patches are itchy and can be painful, but most of all, they can be embarrassing for the person affected.

I have suffered with psoriasis on my scalp and neck for a few years now, and I’ve tried many different treatments including creams and ointments both over the counter and prescribed by physicians. The results have always been the same. They help for a while and then, in a few weeks, the symptoms and my embarrassment return.

Recently, I’ve started a new treatment. It is called High Frequency Electrotherapy which uses an electric current to stimulate the surface of the scalp and local blood circulation, improve the process of nourishment, stimulate local glandular activity, and supply heat to sooth the nervous system of the scalp. These benefits all help decrease the irritation and symptoms of psoriasis.

I’ve personally been doing a high frequency treatment for 10 minutes three days a week for the past three weeks. I’ve seen a significant reduction in my symptoms—enough that I’m finally comfortable wearing my hair in a ponytail which I have not done in years! I highly recommend high frequency treatments for anyone with psoriasis. It’s been a life changer for me.

Choose the Correct Sunscreen Product

Drawing of Sunscreen Bottle

Although many only use sunscreen during summer months, sunscreen is an essential skincare product we should use every day of the year. Of course the sun is brighter during the summer, so it is especially important then, but sunscreen protects against skin damage from UV radiation all year round.

It is advisable to apply sunscreen at least 15-20 minutes before going outside to allow the drying time on all exposed body areas. Re-apply every two hours when exposed to the sun in general, even on cloudy days as 80 per cent of UV rays can penetrate the clouds. When out on a beach, it is advisable to re-apply sunscreen every 15-20 minutes. Wash your face or wipe off the area with a wet tissue before re-applying.

But different skin types should use different types of sunscreen. Here’s how to choose the right sunscreen for you according to your skin type.

  • If you have normal skin:

    Normal skin types are the least problematic. The tissue does not reveal any traces of oil and looks clean, smooth and has a good circulation and a healthy complexion. Opt for a cream-based sunblock. In case of oiliness, dab with a tissue to remove the excess oil.

  • If you have dry skin:

    Dry skin has a low level of sebum and can be prone to sensitivity. The skin has a parched look because of its inability to retain moisture. The skin usually feels tight and uncomfortable after washing unless a moisturizer or cream is applied. Lotion or moisturizing SPF is the best choice for dry skin. When opting for the right sunblock, one has to keep in mind that a certain thickness is required in the base to protect the skin from sun damage. With this in mind, always opt for the ones that are thick and not light (matte finish, for example). The higher the range of the SPF, the more oily the formulation.

  • If you have oily skin:

    Oily skin is one of the most problematic skin types. The face has spots of facial oil, normally located in the t-zone. The face usually looks greasy, thick, coarse, and shiny and also has large enlarged pores and tends to breakout in acne. For oily skin, gel or aqua-based SPF formulations work the best. These have a drying effect and do not make the skin look greasy.

Fading Dark Spots on Skin

Product - Murad Age Spot and Pigment Lightening SerumI’ve always been a picker. I can’t leave my skin alone and try to pick things that don’t even exist.

I’ve been using all these different products over the years, pro-active brightening spot treatment, Derma’e and other concoctions.

I walked into my favorite beauty supply and a friend of mine handed me a sample of Murad’s “Rapid Age Spot and Pigment Lightening Serum.” I saw my dark spots and pick marks start to fade in just two days. I couldn’t believe all the good it did for me in such a short amount of time. Murad’s product has really been a discovery for me.

It has two active ingredients: Hydroquinone, which is a progressive and intense bleacher, and Glycolic Acid. You have to use Hydroquinone sparingly because its effect can wear off; three days using it and two days off. Glycolic Acid is an AHA, which gently exfoliates the skin and sloughs away old skin cells.

This product doesn’t only get rid of old skin but helps renew skin as well. Though I love Murad products, I realize that what helps foster good skin and not having any dark spots is to also use vitamin C and exfoliate at least twice a week to help promote cell turnover and get rid of bacteria buildup.

For anyone out there who hasn’t found their answer to dark spots, I suggest using this Murad product. It worked for me.

Aloe Vera — a Powerhouse for the Skin

Aloe VeraEveryone is probably very familiar with Aloe Vera as a treatment for burns. However, Aloe Vera has a host of other skin and body healing properties. The Ancient Egyptians called it the “plant of immortality.”

There are many studies that back up the effectiveness of Aloe Vera in treating a variety of skin conditions, from flaky or dry skin, cosmetic ailments, and scalp problems.

Aloe treats sunburns through its powerful healing activity at the epithelial level of the skin, a layer of cells that cover the body. It helps the skin to heal quickly.

Aloe acts as a moisturizer without giving it a greasy feel, so it is perfect for anyone with oily skin. Aloe is also great for treating acne. The gel contains two hormones Auxin and Gibberellins. These two hormones contain wound healing and anti-inflammatory properties. Aloe is used to effectively heal chronic skin problems, such as psoriasis, acne, and eczema.

Aloe Vera is also widely used in anti-aging products. Aloe leaves many antioxidants including beta carotene, and vitamins C and E, that help improve the skin’s natural firmness and helps keep the skin hydrated. Aloe also lessons the visibility of stretch marks.

Besides being an effective skin treatment, Aloe is nutrient rich for good health. The solid material contains over 75 different nutrients including vitamins, minerals, enzymes, sugars, antraquinones, or phoenolic compounds, lignin, saponins, sterols, amino acids, and salicylate acid. It also helps to aid in digestion when taken internally.

Aloe Vera is one amazing, medicinal plant that anyone who cares about health and skin wellness should know about.

Do-It-Yourself Bath Bombs

Homemade Bath Bombs

Always on the go, we are so time sensitive that we never stop and smell the roses. But before we can take care of others, we must take care of ourselves.

I’ve found that a great way to relax is to take a luxuriating bath. Aromatic therapy can take you on a pleasant ride to a land of peace and tranquility. Many companies make bath salts, bombs, and oils; but you can customize your experience by creating you own.

Here’s how to create your own bath bomb.

Ingredients

  • 1 & ¾ cup baking soda
  • 2 cups cornstarch
  • 1 cup citric acid
  • food coloring
  • essential oils–peppermint or lavender for a stronger scent, lemon or grapefruit for a weaker scent.

Equipment

  • spritzer bottles
  • glass bowl
  • baking molds

Method

Sift baking soda, citric acid, and cornstarch to remove chunks.

To make different tints, fill small spritzer bottles with water and add about 6 drops of food coloring to each.

Pour 1 cup of sifted powdered mixture into a glass bowl. Lightly spritz, stirring after each spritz, until powder is the desired color. Add water slowly so mixture does not fizz. If mixing two tints, alternate colors as you spritz. Check the consistency of the powder with your fingers; when it can be tightly packed or shaped, stop spritzing. This may take a little while.

Add 5 drops essential oil for stronger scents or 6 drops for weaker ones. Mix well. Firmly pack mixture into small baking molds. I use ¼ cup for each fizzy, which is good for one bath. Allow mixture to set for two hours, then pop out of the mold carefully. Repeat, with different tints if desired, for remaining powder.

After you’ve made your batch, take one and enjoy it in a bath!

Smoking and Skin

Please, No SmokingSmoking harms nearly every organ of the body. Some of these harmful effects are immediate.

Did you know second-hand smoke is even more dangerous than the smoke you inhale when smoking? second-hand smoke doesn’t go through the filter at the end of the cigarette, it just goes directly into your lungs. The levels of nicotine, tar, nitric oxide, and carbon monoxide are at least twice as high in second-hand smoke.

If you smoke, or if you breathe in second-hand smoke, you’re getting a lot of skin damage. The collagen destroying enzymes (MMPs) ramp us when exposed to tobacco smoke, causing increased wrinkling and visible aging of the skin. Aging of the skin means that it droops, develops wrinkles and lines, and can become dry and coarse with uneven skin coloring and broken blood vessels (telangiectasia). Smokers often appear gaunt and develop an orange or gray complexion.

Women who smoke have a harder time getting pregnant and, if they conceive, can harm the health of their baby. Smoking can also lead to early menopause, which increases your risk of developing certain diseases like heart disease.

Smoking delays wound healing, including skin injuries and surgical wounds. It increases the risk of wound infection, graft or flap failure, death of tissue, and the formation of blood clots.

Smokers have bigger bellies and less muscle than non-smokers. They are more likely to develop type two diabetes, even if they don’t smoke every day. Smoking also makes it harder to control diabetes once you already have it. Diabetes is a serious disease that can lead to blindness, heart disease, kidney failure, and amputations.

As if lung cancer wasn’t enough, you need to know that smoking causes much more than just lung cancer.

Seven Best Plants for Skin Care

Here is my list of the seven best plants for skin care, most of which we use during facials and waxing at the Cinta Aveda Institute.

Aveda Plant Ingredients

  1. Aloe Vera is the top medicinal plant on my list. It is common in lotions. Aloe soothes and hyrdrates. The gel of an aloe plant contains nutrients vitamins A, C, and E; folic acid; zinc; and potassium.
  2. Lavender works to soothe your skin. It also has antiseptic properties that make it great for cleansing.
  3. Roses do more than smell good, they also boost the health of your skin. Rose is good for hydrating skin and it also helps soothe overworked skin. Rose is a great toner and can ease redness and irritation from breakouts.
  4. Calendula can relieve dryness and make your skin look and feel more hydrated. It also boosts blood flow and is used to treat burns.
  5. Tea tree oil is an ideal choice for treating acne. You can also use it as an alternate to deodorant. At the Cinta Aveda Institute, we use it after we wax a body part, to prevent breakouts and ingrown hairs.
  6. Witch hazel is great for cleansing your face. It helps clear away dirt, bacteria, and debris that can lead to breakouts. It’s also great for relieving skin irritation and fighting inflammation.
  7. Neem oil can help if you suffer from chronic skin issues such as eczema, psoriasis, or recurrent breakouts. Neem oil has a lot of antioxidants, which means it supports healthy, youthful-looking skin.

Commercial Deodorants Have Chemicals

Homemade Deodorant

How is your Deodorant working for you? Do you use a commercial deodorant product advertised on television?

How would you feel if I told you that most of those deodorants contain cancer-causing ingredients? Well, it’s true, they do. Many contain preservatives called parabens that cause hormone disruption—specifically, they mimic estrogen—and can cause DNA damage that could lead to breast cancer. You can recognize parabens in the ingredient list: methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben, or benzylparaben.

And do you think it’s good for your armpits not to sweat? No it’s not good. If you’re using an antiperspirant, it blocks your sebaceous glands from producing the sweat that should to help cool the body. You may think you will sweat more if you don’t use an antiperspirant; at first you will, but once your body becomes regulated and back to its natural state, you will not sweat as much and the odor will reduce.

When you decide to do the switch, you will notice changes. Aluminum is the main antiperspirant ingredient in almost all deodorants. Aluminum-based compounds are used to plug up sweat glands. Aluminum may be harmful when placed on to the skin or the breast; it also mimics estrogen-like cells that cause a hormonal effect which may contribute to breast cancer.

Now, remember, what you eat comes out through your pores. So even if you’re using a natural deodorant, if you eat greasy fast food, you’ll most likely still have an odor. Your body cleanses by expelling the toxins through your pores as well as your digestive tract. So eat healthier and you won’t have as much odor. A natural deodorant can mask the occasional scent.

Chlorophyll is also a natural plant-derived ingredient. Chlorophyll can be found in plants and gives them their green color, and it may help protect the body from cancer from the inside out. When ingested, it helps oxygenate the blood and cancer cells don’t thrive in oxygen. So eating a lot of leafy greens will help and act as an internal deodorant.

So which natural deodorant should you use? That all depends upon you. What scents do you like? Are you sensitive to certain oils or plants? If you’re still not sure, make a list of your likes of herbs and oils that help as a natural deodorant. You can even make your own; it’s very simple and cheap and you can have a lot left to make more in the future.

Here is a simple recipe that I use:

  • 1 cup coconut oil (antibacterial)
  • 1 cup baking soda
  • ¼ cup arrowroot powder
  • 10 drops tea tree oil

Just put it all in a cup and mix it all together and you will have a natural, healthy, safe, deodorant!

You can put it in a jar and use a scoop to get it out and rub onto your under arms.

Remember that it will take about 12 days to acclimate your body to the use of natural deodorant. So, be patient, and know that you will be reducing your risk of breast cancer by switching over to natural deodorant.

The Benefits of Microdermabrasion

Female model with exfoliated skin.

If you’ve never heard of Microdermabrasion, it is an amazing machine that can help to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles, increase the production of collagen and elastin, smooth out and retexture the skin, and help to diminish sun spots, scarring, and other discolorations. This machine creates a mechanical exfoliation using small crystals as well as vacuum suction. The vacuum sucks the skin up while the crystals work to exfoliate dead skin cells and imperfections.

Exfoliation is important for all skin types, including the most healthy of skins, to ensure the process of cell turnover. As we age, the rate of our cell turnover—or the amount of time it takes new skin cells to reach the surface and replace the old, dead ones—becomes slower and slower. For this reason, we all need a little help with desquamating the old skin cells. Microdermabrasion is an excellent way to slough off those dead skin cells to reveal a more polished and lively skin tone.

Another benefit of this treatment, in comparison to other forms of deeper exfoliation such as chemical peels, is that there is relatively no downtime. You can leave the spa the same day with a glowing and fresh complexion.

These treatments can be done alone, or in conjunction to an anti-aging, skin brightening, or deep cleansing facial. It is also extremely beneficial when compared with a gentle peel, to really stimulate cell turnover, as well as to decrease pigmentation and sun damage. In addition, for desirable results, it is necessary to have more than one treatment. Microdermabrasion is a progressive treatment, requiring anywhere from two to twelve treatments to see the desired change in your skin.

Check out your local spa scene to see which spas offers this amazing service.

There are a few things to consider to make sure your treatment goes off without a hitch:

  • Make sure your treatment is followed up with some kind of hydrating product. For full facials, a nice hydrating mask is perfect following microdermabrasion, as exfoliated skin can drink up all the nutrients of the mask. For shorter services, a hydrating serum or rich moisturizer can do the trick.
  • It is also crucial that a good sunscreen be applied following your service, as exfoliated skin is more susceptible to sun damage. Aim for at least an SPF of 30, but SPF 50 is ideal.
  • Furthermore, as one of the goals of this treatment is to help to reduce sun damage, it might be a good idea to avoid prolonged time in the sun for a few days.

Five Things You Should Know Before Your First Brazilian

Brazilian Wax Bikini Area

Brazilian waxing has definitely become the newest craze in the beauty industry. In fact, it is becoming a regular routine for women, who simply like to remain bare! If you have never been waxed before and are thinking of taking the plunge, there are definitely some things you should know before going in for your treatment. As someone who worked at a waxing salon for over a year, there are a few things that I noticed from clients who were new to waxing; had they had a little bit of information, their first time would have gone a little bit ‘smoother.’ Here are five tips that you should know before getting your first Brazilian wax.

  1. If you are a shaver, you have to give your hair adequate time to grow out before your first Brazilian wax. Many clients transitioning from shaving to waxing do not know that they cannot shave before waxing. Your hair must be at least as long as a grain of rice in order to wax, and often times you will not get a clean wax if you have shaved the week before, because your hair will be on different growth cycles. In addition, the short coarse hair, due to shaving, may cause the experience to be a bit more painful. To ensure a more flawless and easy wax, let your hair grow out as long as possible first.
  2. Some estheticians do not give their clients a rulebook for the delicate twenty-four hours after having a Brazilian wax. Because you have removed the hair from the follicle, and did some light exfoliation, the open hair follicle is susceptible to bacterial invasion. Typically it takes about twenty-four hours for the follicle to close up again. So during that time period, avoid steam rooms, taking hot baths, and hot yoga. These types of environment create the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. On a side note, a lot of clients who have had bacterial infections assume that it is the spa’s fault for using contaminated wax when, more likely, that is not the case. We all carry various strains of bacteria on our body, including staphylococci, the bacteria responsible for staph infections. Bacteria cannot penetrate solid, intact skin so normally our body is not in danger of infection. After waxing however, the skin is more vulnerable to this bacteria, so this advice is particularly important. In addition, avoid sexual activity for twenty-four hours, as this is a very easy way to spread bacteria. It may be tempting to show off your clean wax, but give it a day to heal up!
  3. Exfoliation in between waxing sessions is key to ensure you do not get ingrown hairs. When shaving, ingrown hairs are not as big of an issue because the hair is not being removed from the root, it is simply be shortened. So there is still an open pathway for that hair to grow back in. With waxing, the hair is being completely removed from the follicle, so sometimes the new hair gets trapped underneath the skin, which can cause an infection or inflammation. The way to prevent this is to exfoliate and remove dead skin cells. About two days after your wax, it is okay to begin exfoliating the area. You may use a scrub in the shower, or scrubby gloves—making sure to clean the gloves after each use to avoid bacteria—or you can use an exfoliating solution with something like salicylic, lactic, or glycolic acid to digest dead skin cells. Exfoliating will help your bikini area remain smooth and healthy.
  4. Another new concept for people transitioning from shaving to waxing is the idea of letting the hair grow in between waxing. The typical time period between Brazilian maintenance is four to six weeks, but that can differ depending on your growth cycle, which may be a little messed up due to shaving. Between those four to six weeks, let your hair grow back in to ensure a nice clean wax. It may be an adjustment for some, but you will get used to the waxing cycle and come to love it!
  5. Lastly, it might be helpful to take a Tylenol or ibuprofen about thirty minutes before your first waxing appointment. This well help to ease the pain of the first time wax, as well as help to stop inflammation. Also remember to breathe and try to relax!

Aveda’s Perfecting Plant Peel

Aveda Product - Perfecting Plant PeelI love Aveda’s Perfecting Plant Peel, and every client I do this on absolutely loves the way their skin looks and feels immediately after. Powered by plants, Aveda’s Perfecting Plant Peel system performs like 30% glycol without the redness and irritation. It is a facial masque which actively smoothes with instant exfoliation and radiance. This can be performed as a standalone 30 minute service or an add on to our signature facials. Your skin will have an amazing glow immediately after the service.

I believe you get the full plant peel when used with the steamer. I like to apply the plant peel and let the client sit under steam for about seven minutes, while I do a hand/arm massage. When the seven minutes are up, I spray the activating spray over the face and massage it in so it warms up. I like to combine this with the hydrating mask mixed with a little Outer Peace Cooling Masque to cool and hydrate the skin after. When the client looks in the mirror they immediately notice smaller pores and a glowing face. I always get excited to see the look on their face when they see their skin. If you feel the client could benefit from this peel, you should always recommend and explain the amazing immediate results they will get. It is an extra $10.00 on top of the facial price, but I promise it is worth it.

Is Your Sunscreen Safe?

It’s almost spring and summer will be right around the corner. The one thing we always hear during the spring and summer months is “Wear Sunscreen!” Ok, we know the the risks of not wearing sunscreen but do we know the risks of wearing it? Everyone thinks that sunscreen is all upside with no downsides. Unfortunately, sunscreen comes with many risks.

Most store-bought sunscreens contain harsh cancer-causing chemicals that cause aging and damage to your skin. For instance some of the most well-known and widely-used sunscreen in the U.S. have some chemical ingredients that may be extremely harmful and could cause serious problems. What are the ingredients that may be harmful? There are many, but here is a list of the ingredients that I try to avoid:

  • Oxybenzone: This is a chemical penetration enhancer that provokes a reaction when exposed to the sun’s UV rays. When absorbed into the skin, it can provoke an eczema-like reaction that sometimes spreads beyond the exposed area and can stay on your skin well beyond your time in the sun.

  • Octinoxate: One of the most common ingredients in sunscreen, it helps other chemicals to absorb into the skin. It can disrupt hormone balance when mixed with water—perhaps by jumping into a pool while wearing sunscreen. It can also produce free radicals which can damage your skin and cell tissues.

  • Retinyl Palmitate: A derivative of vitamin A, Retinyl Palmitate is supposed to improve the sunscreens performance against UV damage but actually, when exposed to the sun, it can break down and create free radicals that damage cells and DNA, and possibly cause cancer.

  • Paraben Preservatives: Parabens are in many products and could be very harmful. They can cause allergic reactions, hormone disruption, and are suspected to be a major factor in breast cancer.

Now that you know that there are risks, please make sure to look at the ingredients to make sure the product is safe for you and your loved ones. The Environmental Working Group does an annual study of sunscreens and they provide a list of healthy sunscreens and brands that you can research yourself. They also provide a breakdown of the ingredients of the various products and why they are safe for you.

Get out there and enjoy these glorious seasons, but use a safe and effective sunscreen so you can fully enjoy the sun without hurting yourself or your skin.

Acne is a Map to Your Body’s Systems

No one likes to break out. There are many different reasons why we breakout and what can be causing it. People can breakout in the adolescent years or as an adult and if you are really unlucky you might breakout in both.

Some causes of Acne are:

  1. Hormone Changes
  2. High Stress Levels
  3. Diet
  4. Products and Cosmetics
  5. Medications
  6. Environmental Factors
  7. Not Having Proper Cleansing Habits

If you want to know why you are breaking out, simply start by taking a look in the mirror. Where our acne presents itself can say a lot about its root cause. After doing some research, here are some locations of breakouts and what they can mean.

  • Forehead: Digestive System and Bladder

    In order to improve acne in this area, you may need to consider a diet change or an increase in your intake of water. Consider cutting back on processed foods-that can really help clear up this area.

  • In Between the Eyebrows: Liver

    An allergy often manifests itself as acne in between the eyebrows. Consider a detox of sorts. Cut down on your alcohol consumption, eat lighter foods, and consider any foods to which you may have developed an allergy (such as dairy).

  • Temples and Ears: Kidneys

    This is a quick fix: cut down on coffee, soda, and other sugary beverages, and drink pure water instead. Hydrate your body and you should see a significant decrease in acne around your eyes.

  • Nose: Heart

    Acne on your nose could mean high blood pressure or high cholesterol. Try cutting back on red meat and increase your intake of foods with Omega 3’s like avocado and fish. Additionally, because your nose is so porous, make sure that your makeup isn’t expired or try a different kind if you don’t see better results.

  • Cheeks: Respiratory System

    Acne in this area usually also points to allergies. If allergies aren’t the culprit, consider keeping your body at a neutral temperature rather than allowing it to overheat. Avoid spicy foods and add more green veggies to your diet.

  • Outside or Corners of the Mouth: Hormones

    This zone is difficult to eradicate because hormones can be hard to control. However, getting enough ZZZ’s at night, keeping skin clean and moisturized, and a balanced diet can help. Sometimes birth control can be the cause as well.

  • Chin: Stomach

    Because this area is associated with the stomach, increasing the amount of fiber in your diet, drinking more water, and generally detoxing your body may help clear up this area.

In truth, you’re fighting your acne from the inside out! If your issue is truly internal, no amount of creams and cleansers will clear up your face anyway. The right skin care routine does make a big difference, but it won’t be a quick fix. Clearing up adult acne will take time, dedication, and lifestyle changes.

4 Benefits of Bergamot Oil

There are a lot of essential oils out there. One of my favorites is bergamot. There are so many benefits from using bergamot oil in your everyday light. Bergamot has a very sweet smell and it is very citrusy. It’s also very refreshing. I love putting it on after I get out of the shower or bathtub. So what can Bergamot oils do for you?

1) Bergamot is a natural anti-depressant and stimulant. Bergamot creates a feeling of freshness and joy and energy. In cases of depression it helps with sadness by improving blood flow and circulation. The stimulations also increases the secretions of digestive juices, biles, and insulin by basically acting as a natural digestion aider.

2) The oil is also known to be an antibiotic and disinfectant. Bergamot inhibits the growth of germs and virus and fungi. The oil also prevents infections including those on the skin. Bergamot also reduces the feeling of pain in the body. Another one of the great qualities of bergamot is that it can reduce nervous tension and it can treat ailments such associated with stress such as sleepiness and high blood pressure.

3) The oil is also a cicatirsant which means it aids in pigmentation issues and leaves your skin tone attractive and even in tone. You can use is on the after effects on long term acne post inflammatory hyper pigmentation.

4) Bergamot is also a popular as a natural deodorant. You have to be careful with un-natural deodorants because the lymph nodes in your under arms can easily absorb the toxins and fillers and nasty crud in those drug store brands. Nothing to worry about when bergamot is absorbed by the body! You get all the benefits from the oil flowing around in your body and you will smell great and natural!

A Few Words of Caution: Bergamot oil must be protected from sunlight, because bergaptene, one of its components, becomes poisonous if exposed to sunlight. That is why the oil should always be stored in dark bottles in dark places. Exposure to sunlight should even be avoided after it is applied or rubbed onto the skin, at least until it absorbs into your skin

9 Benefits of Patchouli Oil

TZtIkLag5PsLv2JY2nQSRlObBCaceLfLosQIWZ6pKJcPatchouli oil is my favorite of all the essential oils. The scent is the most relaxing thing in the world to me. I really enjoy rubbing it into my scarf so I can enjoy the scent all day. The best and most common benefit of patchouli oil is that it relieves stress! It is known to help with anxiety and also enhance the senses. Regular use of patchouli oil will keep you peaceful and calm. Here are some of the benefits to this oil:

1) Patchoulis fragrance also appeals to the soul and touches the mind directly. You will often find it used in perfumes and incenses.
2) The oil can also be used for massages and aromatherapy. Patchouli oil massages stimulate and relax the mind and relax the nerves.
3) Patchouli can really help people with depression.
4) Patchouli also has many healing properties.
5) The oil can help prevent infections from getting worse.
6) It is also known to have helped people with dermatitis and eczema and psoriasis.
7) The oil also has anti- aging properties.
8) The oil helps you looking young and healthy!
9) Also patchouli has been known to help acne scarring, dry skin and wrinkles.

Overall, my favorite thing about the oil has to be the way it makes me feel after I have put it on. It takes me to my favorite happy place, somewhere in the hills around my house surrounded by a redwoods. I love that the scent feels somewhat earthy and fresh. There are so many different essential oils and I feel there is one for everyone. There is something extremely spiritual about smelling and choosing an essential oil. The oil you choose will no doubt become a part apart of your life.

Here is a little more history on Patchouli oil:

Patchouli has been around for literally ages. Over the years people have discovered many uses of the oil, ranging from medical uses to cosmetics. The popularity of patchouli reached its peak during the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. Patchouli originates from southeast Asia and the herb grows wild in Sumatra and Java at an altitude of 3,000 feet. However, the cultivation of the herb is extensive in lower tropical jungles. The plant grows to be three feet tall and has a very strong stem with little hairy leaves. To extract the oil the plant is harvested two times a year, sometimes three. The best oil quality is considered to extracted during the rainy season. The process of the extraction involves hand picking the leaves, bailing the leaves, and then followed by draining in the shade. Afterwards, a few days of fermentation is needed. Then the oil is extraxted through steam disillation process. Patchouli is one of the rare essential oils that actually gets better with age! As the oil ages into a deep amber from a light yellow, the fragrance becomes smoother and richer. Patchouli over the years has been used for insect repellant as well as in cosmetics.

4 Types of Honey Masks to Try at Home

Honey masks are not only amazing for your skin but also all natural! Here are four different types of honey masks to try with different skin types :

1- Honey face mask for acne-prone skin

•3 teaspoons raw honey

•1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon

Mix honey and cinnamon together, and apply to your face. Leave the mask on for 10-30 minutes. The antibacterial properties of both honey and cinnamon are especially beneficial for acne-prone skin.

2- Honey face mask for dry skin

•1 teaspoon mashed avocado

•1 teaspoon plain whole milk yogurt

•1 teaspoon honey

Mix ingredients in a small bowl until smooth. Spread the mixture over your face and let it sit for 20-30 minutes before washing it off. The fats in the avocado and whole milk yogurt are deeply moisturizing to the skin, while the lactic acid in the yogurt smooths your skin, refines pores, and stimulates collagen production.

3- Honey mask for sensitive skin

•2 teaspoon of raw honey

•1 teaspoon aloe Vera gel

Stir the aloe and honey together and apply over your face. Leave it on for about 10-20 minutes. Aloe soothes inflammation and calms your skin, perfect for those with sensitive, irritated skin.

4- Honey mask for scars and dark spots

•2 teaspoon of raw honey

•1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Combine the lemon juice and honey, and apply the mixture to your face. Allow it to sit for 20-30 minutes. Lemon juice exfoliates your skin, brightens dark spots and fades scars. Your skin will feel smooth and soft right away, but it may take a few applications to notice a real difference in scars and spots.

The Many Uses of Lavender

0TzSpSkilDZ-PpqJuBRggEjk4-f4okY-njg60JtsZiIThis beautifully-scented herb has been used since ancient times and still remains one of the most loved and revered of all essential oils.

Aromatherapists feel that lavender essential oil is the most versatile because of its many healing properties and considers it one of the best essential oils to have on hand.

Lavender calms anxiety and provides natural stress relief.

Throughout history, people have turned to lavender for all kinds of ailments including acne treatment, skin disorders, digestive complaints, pain relief, and to prevent and treat infections.

LAVENDER HAS BEEN USED FOR:

• Pain relief

• Headaches and migraines

• Muscle aches and sprains

• Menstrual cramps

• Allergies

• Asthma

• Relaxation

• Anxiety

• Depression

• Inducing sleep

• Digestive distress, gas and colic

• Inflammation

• Burns

• Insect bites

• Chicken Pox

• Acne treatment

• Dermatitis

• Insect repellant

• Dry skin

• Muscle relaxant

HOW TO USE LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL

Some options for using lavender essential oil are:

Mix 5 to 6 drops of Lavender essential oil to your bath water if you have dry skin.

Diffuse 10 to 12 drops of Lavender into the air during your workday for natural stress relief.

Add 2 drops of Lavender per ounce of your favorite lightly scented, unrefined organic oil (like almond oil or olive oil) for a body oil with all the benefits of lavender for improving your skin, relaxing your mind, warding off insects or helping you sleep.

The unrefined organic oil you choose acts as a “carrier oil” for lavender (or any essential oil, for that matter), which dilutes the oil and carries the beneficial properties into your skin.

4 Benefits from Lymphatic Massage

I have recently just learned to do the lymphatic massage. Not only did I learn how to give the massage, but I also learned how it works and how beneficial it is for the body. Lymphatic massage helps to remove the waste and detoxifies the body.

Lymphatic massage also helps with:

1) healing after surgery which regenerates the tissue to reduce scarring at surgical incision sites.

2) breast feeding because the lymph drainage massage can help to reduce the swelling of engorgement and ameliorate plugged ducts. Fixing these two problems can reduce soreness in the breasts and nipples, ultimately leading to better breastfeeding.

3) improved immune system. They state that lymph drainage massages can improve the function of the immune system and increase the production of antibodies that fight off infections. Lymph drainage massages can also reduce inflammation in the body that causes diseases such as arthritis.

4) relaxation- Lymph drainage massages can be especially relaxing because they can reduce pain levels in the body.

So not only our the benefits great for you but it also feels good!

Beauty and Art at Aveda

lScxstwxfLTdsxTKuWtji72xyFERrKPMAg7Qn8aYIRoWhile at an Aveda Concept Salon or an Aveda Institute, one can’t help but notice the allure of beauty and art all around. The Aveda style uniquely speaks of etheric images beckoning us to a moment of visual wellness.

Like a palette of nature’s colorful expressions, the subtle and bold vintage water color wash you from the moment you step in. You become excited and sun drenched. In other words, an experience at Aveda is an immersion into fine art.

As an Esti student I am often reminded that my education is not just about technique, application, and product knowledge. While those subjects set the foundation to build a life long professional career from, I believe the true essence of Aveda training and service is about creating art through bringing forth each guest’s individual beauty.

I have found that the “compliment sandwich” is a chance for me to share with my guests what makes them unique. To emphasize a person’s individual and personal assets, I sometimes mentally say to myself, “what makes this guest specifically beautiful?”

I have found that a sincere compliment really helps to ease a guest into their service. I believe this gives them a feeling of connection and lets the guest know that I see and I care about them.

A finishing touch of a lip or cheek color is another opportunity to introduce to the guest the Aveda allure, so when they step out of the experience center they feel as if they have experienced not only moments of wellness from their service but have participated in making the everyday into an expression of beauty and art.