Essential Oil of the Week: Sandalwood
As the mother of a 2 year old I am typically searching for a calming, anti-anxiety essential oil pretty regularly. Having thought that maybe my child just wouldn’t go through that ‘terrible two’ stage my oil arsenal is made up of detoxifying and immune boosting products rather than relaxing essential oils. Well here we are in the midst of a pretty difficult toddler-hood and thus I am collecting a mellow mix for my little guy. One of the best natural tools for anxiety and irritability is Sandalwood essential oil. This warm and rich aromatic liquid is created by steam distillation of chips coming from the ‘heartwood’ of the tree itself. Sandalwood is highly prized and very precious due to the fact that trees need to mature at least 30 if not 70 years in order to achieve a premium product. The Ayurvedic doctors of India have used Sandalwood for ages having this oil introduced at birth, it is safe to use on children, and continuing usage all the way up to death. Sandalwood was once used to embalm bodies of the dead just as was Myrrh. Since this essential oil is so effective at soothing the stomach and digestive tract it makes for a fabulous baby remedy. It is always smart to dilute the essential oil in quality nut/seed/vegetable oils like olive before topical application on youngsters. While this essential oil helps qualm any internal upset, it also aids in the release of fear and stress that may be pent up in the mind. This is why Sandalwood has long been used in incense and alongside meditation sessions, it has the ability to rejuvenate an anxious and depressed mental state. Apply a drop or two to your temples before a session of yoga, massage or meditation for an instant lift. Try blending this luscious oil with Lavender and Frankincense to deepen your connection. Beyond the obvious anti-inflammatory components of Sandalwood it is also a known antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, disinfectant, expectorant, sedative and tonic. Internally this oil will reduce ulcers, bring down a fever, lower bad cholesterol, decrease blood pressure, clear up a urinary infection and reduce lingering coughs. Try using 4 drops daily in a glass of water or milk, as this essential oil is quite tasty. Use Sandalwood essential oil topically to reduce scars and acne, quench dry skin, soothe sore muscles and even replace your chemically laden commercial deodorant. The uses of this essential oil cover an array of maladies and can be aimed at virtually any age group. Be kind to your body and mind this season by dropping by the spa for a tranquil healing session scented with this age-old remedy known as Sandalwood essential oil!
After a long day of chasing after my two year old at his birthday party this past weekend my back and neck are completely worn out. As I finally sat down on the couch that evening I felt my muscles crying out for attention. It is times like these when I wish I was able to work on my own body but since the areas are hard to reach I instead turned to my trusty essential oils. I immediately pulled out my strong and refreshing bottle of Wintergreen essential oil, applied a few drops along my spine and across my neck and sat back to allow this potent potion to soak in. Within 15 minutes my aches and pains were gone, not only that but I smelled amazing! Wintergreen essential oil is a well-know antispasmodic and instantly relieves tension of the head and neck upon application. Be aware of the fact that this oil should NEVER be taken internally as it is poisonous. Wintergreen is safely used topically and for acute injuries rather then chronic conditions. You are not going to want to use this oil daily for long periods of time. It does have a powerful impact on stiff or tight muscles and pain or inflammation in the body. Athletes and active individuals would be wise to have a bottle on hand for use post workout. The properties contained in Wintergreen not only work to eliminate pain but also bring on relaxing state of mind. When used in the evening this oil will guarantee a good nights sleep. Wintergreen aids the body in detoxification by removing excess water and salt while simultaneously boosting the urinary system. Through these processes Wintergreen also prevents kidney stone formation in the human system. It makes for the perfect winter time oil since it increases circulation and warms the body. The aroma is reminiscent of a brisk walk through the snow covered woods we know so well here in Lake Tahoe. Go ahead and stoke the fire, grab a warm cup of tea and treat your tired feet to a rub with wintergreen essential oil, your feet will thank you in the morning!
Massage Therapist @NLM and Skin Care
Essential Oil of the Week: Myrrh
One of the most ancient of all known essential oils comes from a resinous thorny tree. The essential oil of Myrrh was once used by Egyptians to embalm their dead. It is used widely today in order to treat a huge epidemic known as Candida. This is a fungal infection that grows in response to sugar in the body and Myrrh helps to tame this process. This essential oil also reduces eczema, ringworm, athletes foot and dandruff too. The essential oils of Myrrh as well as Frankincense are made from resins of tress that grow in Arabia and Africa. These have been prized healing potions for as long as humans have walked this earth. To say that Myrrh is a restorative potion would be an understatement. This essential oil contains antiseptic, antiviral, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and various other properties. One could turn to this oil for most any health issue. It is known as a powerful antioxidant, so try a drop in your morning glass of water to boost your immune system for the rest of your day. Pregnant women would be wise to avoid this oil if they never worked with Myrrh before since it acts like a tonic on the uterus. This is a fabulous essential oil to have on hand during the summer months since it repels insects and the sun's UV rays. Beyond protecting your skin from the sun, it also aids the skin in healing from wrinkles, cracks, dryness and redness. Mix a drop or two into your morning face oil or lotion for a gorgeous complexion. You may also want to add a few drops to your head to strengthen the scalp and hair in general. If you suffer from hair loss, Myrrh can help halt that issue. Those who need help with their internal health would be smart to grab the Myrrh essential oil as it reduces symptoms of ulcers and diarrhea. Try adding a few drops to your chest and abdomen after dinner before you turn in for the evening. On a physiological level, Myrrh helps release fears and encourages the acceptance of self and others. I understand why this essential oil has been a go to for such a long time now, it seems to be the answer to so many issues whether it be mental, emotional, or physical. Let us help you unwind before gearing up for the holidays with a face and scalp massage incorporating the age-old remedy known as the Myrrh essential oil.
By: Sarah McCallum
Massage Therapist @ NLMSC
Essential Oil of the Week: Thyme
As the cooler temperatures roll in I can’t help but think about how I am going to safeguard my family from those typical wintertime illnesses. You know the usual suspects: cold, flu, bronchitis, pneumonia and stuffy nose/head. If you are looking for a go to oil to use during the upcoming season look no further than Thyme essential oil. This fabulous germ buster contains anti-fungal, antiseptic, antimicrobial, antiviral, and anti parasitic properties. Thyme essential oil takes care of so many different issues at once. It makes for a fabulous respiratory aid; diffuse 5-10 drops at night when dealing with a cough and you will sleep soundly. This strong and herbaceous essential oil is extremely potent so beware when applying topically to the body. Always dilute Thyme essential oil in coconut oil, or something similar, before using on those with sensitive skin. Do not use this essential oil if you’re pregnant and be very cautious when using on babies. Thyme essential oil will help to keep all of those pesky insects out of your home during the cooler months as well. You can place cotton balls soaked in Thyme essential oil near entryways and windows to maintain a critter free home. I am constantly looking for a way to warm my naturally chilly hands and feet during the winter season and Thyme is a great circulatory stimulant. Apply a few drops to your feet before stepping into your boots for a cozy walk in the snow. If you end up overindulging during the holidays, as we all do at some point, go ahead and apply a few drops of Thyme essential oil to your spine as it will reduce flatulence and tone your digestive organs. For those of you that go a bit too hard on the hard cider you can find relief with this oil. Thyme naturally aids in liver detoxification so you don’t have to suffer through a hangover if you have a bottle of this powerhouse in your medicine cabinet. You can take a drop or two internally via a glass of water to keep your liver happy and healthy. Moreover, this essential oil is one of the most ancient and most powerful of all the oils. Be sure to load up on a bottle or two before the cold sets in and those fun wintry ailments begin to proliferate!
By: Kristen and Bethany