Continuing our theme of bringing some cheer and calm to your New Year, today's blog is about lavender - one of the most popular and widely used of all essential oils, not surprising considering it has such an impressive array of applications. From inducing relaxation and aiding sleep, to soothing minor burns and grazes – this herbaceous yet sweet and floral essential oil is a must for every household!
To relieve the stresses and strains brought on by the post-Christmas sales, or by the hustle and bustle of the first few weeks back at work, lavender is ideal! It is famed for its soothing floral aroma and abilities to aid mental relaxation and induce restful sleep so if you’re having trouble dropping off, sprinkle 2 or 3 drops over your pillow, or add 5-6 drops to a hot bath for the ultimate in relaxation. Lavender also alleviates muscular tension, aches and pains so is great for relieving that shop-till-you-drop syndrome.
Because of its delightful fragrance and calming and soothing effects on the skin and emotions, our organic lavender oil is a key ingredient in our Organic Hand and Body Lotion and for its added muscle relaxing benefit in our Relax massage oil and Lavender Hand and Body Wash. Being a gentle oil suitable for babies and children makes it a perfect key element in our Organic Baby Massage Oil and Baby Gentle Wash and Shampoo too – great for protecting against chafing, calming any soreness and soothing the most fractious child.
Its botanical name comes from the Latin word ‘lavare’, which means ‘to wash’ - appropriate as the essential oil in particular has great antiseptic qualities which is why we use it in our Organic Lavender Soap and essential oil blends. Lavender is suitable for most skin types as it has a balancing effect on sebum, so if you’re looking for a real pick me up product at this harsh time of year, try Organic Avocado Replenishing Cream . With antioxidant fruit oils as well as frankincense and lavender, it’s a sumptuous boost for winter skin by day or night.
Whilst we use lavender oil in many of our products, the pure essential oil of lavender is incredibly versatile in a vaporiser for room fragrance and freshening especially in the bedroom, nursery or sickroom and it is an excellent all-round first aid remedy especially for burns where quick application can avoid blistering and promote rapid healing. Margaret suggests applying a couple of drops neat to minor burns, repeated as necessary, to reduce the pain and heat within the tissues. This impressive ability to promote healing combined with a calming effect when inhaled makes lavender oil the perfect treatment for all minor wounds, abrasions, bites and stings etc. Cleanse first with 2-3 drops in a little water, and then add 1 or 2 drops neat onto a dressing or dab directly onto the affected area.
For the relief of the chest and nasal congestion caused by the various viral infections rife at this time of year, lavender works particularly well as part of a blend such as Congest Ease and Breathe Ease. Such bug-busting blends also help cleanse the atmosphere for the protection of others at home or in the work-place.
Because of its popularity as a fragrance in toiletries, it is worth noting that all lavender is not created equal. Only the pure essential oil distilled from the plant species Lavandula has positive health attributes. Lavender described on a list of ingredients simply as ‘fragrance’ has no such benefits and in fact synthetic chemical fragrances are a common source of allergies. In fact all of the essential oils we use are backed by full technical analysis and being certified organic, are 100% derived from their named plant and closely monitored from seed to consumer to guarantee that they are pure and free from pesticide and herbicide residues, contaminants or adulterants. (Adulteration usually occurs at the source using synthetic fragrances as a means to ‘extend’ very costly oils or mask poor quality).
Additionally, all our essential oils are carefully selected from the current season’s distillation to ensure maximum vitality and shelf-life. We source our beautiful organic lavender oil directly from a family-run farm with a long history of growing and distilling the finest quality organic lavender. We feel sure that this contributes to their dynamic activity and kindness to sensitive skin - conventionally produced essential oils can offer no such guarantee of purity.