Pink Grapefruit Yogurt Cake

This delicious cake was loved by all who tried it—including those who don’t normally like grapefruit! The cake is a perfect balance of tart and sweet with an incredibly moist texture. It is sure to be a hit at your next dinner party, essential oil class, bridal or baby shower, or wherever you choose to share it. Continue reading

Essential Oil Spotlight: Lavender

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) essential oil has a wonderful, sweet, floral aroma with herbaceous, balsamic, and woody undertones. The aroma of lavender has been used for many years in sachets, pillows, and potpourri to help promote feelings of serenity and peace.

Lavender essential oil is a universal oil that has traditionally been known to balance the body and to work wherever there is a need. The list of common primary uses, historical uses, French medicinal uses, and other possible uses contains over 120 conditions. So, if in doubt, use lavender!

Lavender essential oil possesses analgesic, anticoagulant, anticonvulsant, antidepressant, antifungal, antihistaminic, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antimutagenic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antitoxic, antitumor, cardiotonic, regenerative, and sedative properties.

Body systems often affected by lavender essential oil include the cardiovascular and nervous systems, emotions, and the skin.

Research being conducted on lavender continues to show new possible uses and therapeutic benefits that lavender may possess. To learn more about a number of these research studies, including summaries and sources, please see the book Modern Essentials.

Applications of Lavender Essential Oil and Safety Data

Topical Application: Lavender essential oil is one of the gentlest essential oils and can be used safely on children, pregnant women, elderly people, animals, and those with sensitive skin. It can be applied neat (with no dilution) when used topically. Apply directly on area of concern or to reflex points.
Aromatic Application: Lavender essential oil can be diffused or inhaled directly. Lavender oil promotes consciousness, health, love, peace, and a general sense of well-being when inhaled. It also nurtures creativity.
Internal Application: Lavender essential oil can be taken internally. Try placing a drop or two under the tongue, taking it in a capsule, adding a little to a beverage, or using it as a flavoring in cooking. If adding lavender to a food or beverage, try using just a toothpick at first, and add more to taste.

5 Ways to Use Lavender Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
The scent of lavender blends well with most oils, especially with citrus oils and other floral oils. As an antihistamine, lavender essential oil is beneficial for relieving allergy symptoms. Its sedative properties make it a great option for promoting a good night’s rest. Try diffusing one of the following blends in your diffuser. You could also add a drop of lavender essential oil to a cloth, tissue, nasal inhaler, or the palms of your hands and breathe in the aroma.

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Sweet Dreams Pillow Spray

Rest peacefully tonight with the help of this pillow spray! This can be especially helpful for children—try placing these bottles on a bedside table for your kids to use during the night to spray away bad dreams and other nighttime fears!
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Basil-Infused Pasta Primavera

This tasty dish allows your fresh spring and summer veggies to shine, compliments of a hint of basil essential oil!

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Oatmeal Shower Scrub Bags

Do you like the moisturizing effects of an oatmeal bath, but don’t like having all that oatmeal in your bathtub? These Oatmeal Shower Scrub Bags are the solution! Simply rub the bag over your skin when you shower, bathe, or wash your hands. The oats moisturize, the soap cleans, the lavender soothes and scents, and the organza bag gives a gentle exfoliation. Scrub bags make great gifts for friends, family, or essential oil class members. In fact, this recipe is a fantastic make-and-take class idea!

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Homemade Essential Oil Dilution Sticks

While some essential oils can be used “neat” (without dilution), many do require dilution, especially when used on children, pregnant women, or people with sensitive skin. The most common way to dilute essential oils is to mix them with fractionated coconut oil. Sometimes this can get a little messy—especially when you’re on-the-go or applying oils to a wiggly child. We found a dilution solution by creating a thickened blend of carrier oils stored in a twist-up container: a dilution stick. This stick contains a formula of carrier oils that are good for sensitive skin and will remain solid at room temperature.

Our dilution stick recipe does not contain essential oils, so it can be used with any essential oil you need at the time. To use the stick, simply twist it up and rub it onto your skin before (or after) applying your essential oils.

If you have a favorite essential oil that you use frequently, you can also add it to the melted liquid before pouring the mixture into your containers. Or you can add the essential oil after pouring the carrier oil mixture into each container. Just be sure to stir the essential oil in with a toothpick or bamboo skewer before the mixture cools. A good dilution ratio is 1–2 drops per .15 oz. (4.25 g) of carrier oil mixture, or the following:

If you love this idea but don’t want to make it, you can always buy the Essential Oil Carrier Oil Stick that is ready to go. A smaller On-The-Go Essential Oil Extender is also available.

The following recipe fills at least 2 dilution sticks—1 large and 1 small. (Or make 1 round one and 2 small ones, or many little ones—any combination of containers totaling 3 oz.) Keep a big one at home and a small one in your purse or travel bag. That way, you’ll always have one when you need it!

Essential Oil Dilution Sticks

  • Servings: Yield=3 oz.
  • Time: 10–15 minutes active; 1 hour inactive
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Place the mango butter and beeswax in a double boiler on the stove over medium-low heat. You can create a double boiler by placing a glass measuring cup (containing the ingredients) in a pan filled with an inch or so of water.
  2. Once the mango butter and beeswax are melted, reduce the heat to low, and add the coconut oil. When the coconut oil is melted, add the sweet almond oil, and remove boiler from heat. Continue stirring until all the oils have melted together.
  3. Make sure your containers are clean and twisted all the way down. Pour the oil into your containers, and allow them to cool. You can place them in the refrigerator to speed up the cooling process.
  4. To use, rub the stick over the skin before applying essential oils.

NOTES:

Other twist-up containers also work, including our Round Twist Tube (2.2 oz/63.4 g) and our Lip Balm Dispensing Tubes (.15 oz/4.25 g). When choosing containers for this recipe, just use as many containers as needed to hold a total of 3 oz.

*Shea butter contains latex (a natural rubber). If you are allergic or sensitive to latex, do a skin patch test before making this recipe with shea butter.

Spring Rain Diffuser Blend

Spring is here, and it often comes with lots of rain. Try diffusing this blend when you’re stuck inside during stormy days! If you need a diffuser, you can find many new styles at aromatools.com.

“Oils to the Rescue” First Aid Kit and Coconut Oil Soothing Balm

Do you have a first aid kit in your home or car? First aid kits are great to have on hand when a little emergency presents itself. But wouldn’t you want to have your essential oils available too? The Oils to the Rescue First Aid Kit combines the basic supplies you need in a standard first aid kit. It also allows space for adding essential oils and customized products that you’ve prepared for common ailments and injuries.

Recommended Essential Oils

If you aren’t sure which oils to include in your kit, try these emergency essential oils:

Cuts and Scrapes
Lavender
Frankincense
Melaleuca
Peppermint
Insect Bites and Stings
Lavender
Melaleuca
Protective Blend
Cleansing Blend (backs ticks out)
Peppermint
Burns
Lavender
Burn Spray
(Spray bottle, water,
Lavender, Peppermint,
Melaleuca)
Headaches
Peppermint
Soothing Blend
Frankincense
Seasonal Discomforts
Lemon
Lavender
Peppermint
Digestive Issues
Digestive Blend
Peppermint
Ginger
Sprains, Strains,
& Splinters

Peppermint
Soothing Blend
Lavender
Protective Blend

You can purchase a card with this information to keep in your kit. Then you’ll know what to do with the oils when an emergency arises.


The Oils to the Rescue First Aid Kit includes 4 large slots that fit 2 oz. size bottles and 6 small slots that fit 15 ml essential oil bottles.

Recommended Additional First Aid Items

Other suggestions of helpful products:

First Aid Coconut Oil Soothing Balm Recipe

This soothing balm is specially formulated to have antiseptic, antimicrobial, analgesic (pain-relieving), and antibacterial properties. It soothes and moisturizes the skin and works well for all first aid injuries, including children’s boo-boos.

This recipe yields 6 oz. So, if you use 2 oz. salve containers, you can keep one at home, take one on-the-go, and give one to a friend.  Or, you could host a make & take class and send your attendees home with their own 1/4 oz. salve jar of balm.

First Aid Coconut Oil Soothing Balm

  • Servings: Yield=6 oz.
  • Time: 10 minutes active
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Melt the beeswax in a double boiler.
  2. Once the beeswax is melted, add the coconut oil. Remove from heat when melted, and add the melaleuca, frankincense, and lavender essential oils.
  3. Slowly add witch hazel to the mixture, using a hand blender to combine. Blend on high for a few seconds until well incorporated.
  4. Spoon the cooled cream into sealable glass containers. The salve is ready to use. It should go on smooth, and you can expect a waxy, balm-like texture. To avoid contaminating the cream with stray bacteria, try not to touch it directly with your hands. Instead, use a cotton swab or clean tissue to apply it to a wound.

What would you include in your first aid kit? Comment below.

Essential Oil Spotlight: Lemon

Lemon essential oil (Citrus limon) is cold expressed from the rinds of the fruit. In order to get a kilo (2.2 lbs) of oil, 3,000 lemons are required.

Lemon essential oil has many uses since it has the following properties: anticancer, antidepressant, antiseptic, antifungal, antioxidant, antiviral, astringent, invigorating, refreshing, and tonic.

It is used primarily for air pollution, anxiety, atherosclerosis, bites/stings, blood pressure (regulation), brain injury, cold sores, colds (common), concentration, constipation, depression, digestion (sluggish), disinfectant, dry throat, dysentery, energizing, exhaustion, fever, flu, furniture polish, gout, greasy/oily hair, grief/sorrow, gum/grease removal, hangovers, heartburn, intestinal parasites, kidney stones, lymphatic cleansing, MRSA, overeating, pancreatitis, physical energy, postpartum depression, purification, relaxation, skin (tones), stress, throat infection, tonsillitis, uplifting, varicose veins, and water purification. See Modern Essentials for many other uses for lemon essential oil.

Historically, lemon has been used to fight food poisoning, malaria and typhoid epidemics, and scurvy. (In fact, sources say that Christopher Columbus carried lemon seeds to America—probably just the leftovers from the fruit that was eaten during the trip.)

Application Methods for Lemon Essential Oil and Safety Data

Aromatic: Use a diffuser or put a few drops of lemon essential oil on a cloth, tissue, nasal inhaler, or the palms of your hands to breathe it in. Lemon oil promotes health, healing, physical energy, and purification when used aromatically. Its fragrance is invigorating, enhancing, and warming.

Topical: Lemon essential oil can be applied neat (with no dilution) when used topically. Apply directly on area of concern or to reflex points. Lemon oil can sensitize the skin to ultraviolet light within 12 hours of use. So exercise caution here, and avoid direct sunlight for up to 12 hours after using on skin.

Internal: Lemon essential oil can be taken internally, and it is often used as a flavoring in cooking. Put 1–2 drops of lemon oil under the tongue or in a beverage. It can also be taken in capsules.

5 Ways to Use Lemon Essential Oil

1. Aromatic
The aroma of lemon essential oil can help you get energized in the morning—try a few drops in the corner of your shower stall to circulate with the water vapor. Lemon aroma can also help relieve anxiety or lift a depressive mood. Diffused lemon helps disinfect the air to prevent the spread of sickness, and it facilitates recovery from colds. Try diffusing lemon essential oil alone or in one of the following recipes:

Here are a few other diffuser blends that use lemon essential oil:

2. Topical
A drop of lemon oil can relieve pain from insect bites or stings. It can also zap formation of cold and canker sores, plus speed tissue recovery from them. Rub lemon on the neck over a sore throat. Use on broken capillaries, spider veins, and varicose veins to reduce and repair. Massage over sore joints. Lemon oil also helps nourish nails and cuticles. Try a healthy nails serum!

Lemon essential oil is helpful in cleansing the lymphatic system. One of the biggest signs that your lymphatic system needs cleansing is cellulite. If you have cellulite, try massaging the following oil blend over affected areas before doing aerobic exercise.


Cellulite Reduction Massage
5 drops rosemary
5 drops ginger
5 drops coriander
5 drops lemon
4 tsp. carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil, coconut oil, or jojoba oil


3. Internal and Food Recipes
Add a drop of lemon oil to a teaspoon of honey for internal sore throat relief. Put a few drops in a glass or metal water bottle, shake, and drink—this purifies the water and aids digestion and detoxification. (The citric acid in lemon may break down some plastic water bottles.) Add several drops to a bowl of water for washing fruits and vegetables before food preparation, or use this produce spray.

Lemon essential oil is easy to add to your favorite recipes. Just substitute 1 drop of lemon oil for 1 tsp. of lemon zest. Here are a few of our favorite recipes to help you get started:

4. Household Cleaning Products
Lemon oil is a natural replacement for many disinfecting cleaning products that may contain harmful chemicals. Neutralize odors in the air with several drops of lemon in a spray water bottle. (Shake frequently during use or use this emulsifier to help mix the oil and water.) Use that same spray bottle to clean and disinfect countertops, cutting boards, and fixtures. Add a few drops of lemon to the dishwasher, washing machine, or dryer to deodorize. Remove adhesives, grease, or gum from hands, hair, and other surfaces. Try using lemon oil with these cleaning recipes:

5. Body Care Products
Because lemon essential oil is known to be antiseptic, antifungal, and antiviral, it is great to add to body care products such as hand sanitizer, breath spray, and soap. Try using lemon oil in the following recipes:

Sources:
Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 8th Edition, pp. 81–82.
Healing Oils: 500 Formulas for Aromatherapy by Carol Schiller & David Schiller

EO Life Hack: Sanitize and Season Wood Kitchenware

Refresh your wood cutting boards and spoons by rubbing a little coconut oil and lemon essential oil on them. The coconut oil helps season the wood, and the antibacterial properties in both the coconut oil and lemon essential oil help sanitize your kitchenware at the same time.