Lavandula Angusti.folia, A.k.a. Lavender~ Part 2: Uses of Lavender Essential Oil

Last week we reviewed how Lavender can be used in edible applications, ex. tea, spice blends, popscicles. Now I am going to review the uses of its essential oil! Essential oils are the true ESSENCE of the said herb. It can be obtained by steam distillation, solvent extraction and infusion. Here is a diagram of how steam distillation works.

When I choose Essential oils, I choose ones that are Organic,{to avoid pesticide contamination} and ones that are steam distilled. Solvent extraction is done with chemical solvents which in turn leave a residue behind that cannot be removed. This is definitely not in line with my goal of providing chemical-free, healing oils for my family & my business, so steam distilled it is!
You may order some Organic Essential Oils where I get mine, at Mountain Rose Herbs! They have SO many Organic herbs to choose from too, so you can get some bulk Organic Lavender for your own spice blend in my first Lavender Post!

Now back to the highlight today, Organic Lavender Essential oil! It has a sweet, floral, herbaceous scent that has a woody undertone. The Ancient Greeks and Romans prized it as a perfume and for its cleansing properties. Medieval Europeans considered lavender an herb of love, as it was claimed to have aphrodisiac qualities!! In the time of dirt floors, the buds were strewn about so that when stepped upon, the flowers released their fragrance. This particular tradition continues today in Portugal and Spain. Its fragrance is known to ease headaches, calm the nerves and promote an easy feeling.

The application of Organic Lavender essential oil should be diluted, as with any essential oil. Our bodes cannot handle the strength of the flower essences, so a little is better than a lot! For example, my Organic Lavender Lotion has a calculated amount of drops in each jar so it will effectively help the user, but not be toxic to the system. It is also one of the FEW safe essential oils for infants and children! Quite a few of my customers have reported positive results from massaging their babies with my Organic Lavender Lotion after bath time to soothe & relax them for bed.

Lavender essential oil is known to ease the pain & discomfort of muscular aches, spasms, and injuries along with helping to heal bruises, cuts and insect bites! This would come in handy when the season starts up again!! Another tip I have listed with my lotion is to apply it to the temples when a headache is present, as it helps relieve it.

When your skin is very dry and cracked, it needs a healing herb like lavender to soothe the inflammation and provide an antiseptic cooling action. This is one of the reasons why I came up with my Organic Lavender Herb lotion bar! Some people are not too excited about applying my cream while away from home, so a lotion bar is the solution! It travels very well, especially in its lidded stainless steel container. Formulated with Organic Unrefined Shea Butter & Organic EV Coconut Oil, it is the best option for intense moisturizing! ​Just rub in-between your hands and watch as the heat from your body starts to melt the lotion bar! You can also rub the lotion bar directly onto the dry skin areas.
Lavender Essential oil also helps repair damaged or overprocessed hair. I know that my hair has changed over the years, and the one thing we ALL have is split ends. Of course if you have just come from the beauty shop and received a trim, you are set, but in-between your trips, it is good to maintain your trim so your hair is the healthiest it can be!
You already are familiar with my Organic Hair Rinse in this post, but do you know of my Organic Hair Gel?

I came up with my formulation for my Organic Hair Gel when I was making my way down the list of products to replace in my beauty regimen. I despise the feeling of “crunchiness” in my hair, so the Organic Hair products at the store were not cutting it. The ONLY one I liked was made in a base of Organic Aloe Vera Gel. BINGO!! I went to work formulating my OWN recipe for Organic Hair Gel. First the herbs Organic Lavender & Organic Rosemary are steeped in the aloe gel to impart their oils into it for a minimum of 4 months.

Then with each bottle ordered, I mix in fresh drops of Organic Lavender Essential oil and Organic Rosemary Essential Oil. The herb infusion, PLUS the essential oils helps to layer the scent & properties so it is more effective. This hair gel is VERY light and is ideal for those who let their hair air dry. Air drying your hair is so much healthier for it anyway, plus it produces a soft, frizz-free head of hair anyone will be jealous of!

Please keep in mind that all of my hair products are formulated to work together! Start off with one of my Organic Soaps to loosen dirt & oils, then my Organic Hair Rinse to balance the pH levels, and end with an application of my Organic Hair Gel to finish. I have been using this routine on my hair for over 2 years now. I will NEVER look back to conventional products again!! My hair not only has less frizz, but it is the healthiest that it has EVER been! I have naturally oily hair and used to have to shampoo EVERY DAY! Not anymore, I am happy to report. My hair has normalized, and my scalp has healed. Tangles have been reduced and split ends are few & far between. You may contact me for a customized hair regimen of your own! I understand not all essential oils are for everyone, so I am happy to customize the hair rinse & hair gel to your preferences. I will also provide recommendations for specific oils that are good for hair & ones that are not. Send me an email if you would like to take advantage of this specialized service! honeybeeholistics (At) yahoO {dOt} cOm

LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A 4OZ BOTTLE OF YOUR OWN HAIR GEL!!
Please let me know how this gel can help you in your quest for chemical-free beauty products for your hair!
***GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED***

The Winner is MARSHA JARAMILLO!!
Congrats Marsha! PLEASE contact me to claim your prize!!

Lavandula Angustifolia, a.k.a Lavender! Part One: Learn how it’s flower buds can help you!

Lavender (lavandula angustifolia) is one of the most widely known plants in the herbal world! You are most likely familiar with its smell, but what about its culinary uses?

source

In the 1970’s, the herb blend Herbes de Provence became a big hit, thus bringing the culinary use of Lavender to the limelight! Note that this is the AMERICAN version, adding in Lavender, as the French do not add Lavender in their Herbes de Provence! You can make your OWN herbs de provence to use on your Roasted Meats, veggies, and just about anything! The key is to only use a TINY bit of Lavender in the mix, or it may be too overpowering!

This is the blend I have made for myself! I just put them all in my spice grinder reserved for HERBS ONLY, as one used for coffee would have a coffee flavor to it, and grind until it is a fine powder. If you only have ONE grinder, you can carefully wash your grinder with soap & water, rinse & dry VERY well, or the herbs will stick to it, then use as directed. Don’t forget to wash again or your coffee may have an herb flavor the next morning 🙂
It is important to grind it well to fully incorporate all of the herbs together so you end up with a powder of sorts to work with. It is then easier to sprinkle on your foods without chunks of herbs! Make sure you seek out Edible Lavender, or Organic Lavender meant for consumption so you do not get a hold of synthetic or chemically processed lavender buds!

Now for the recipe I created:
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HERBES DE PROVENCE / Honey Bee Holistics Version
♦ 2 tablespoons dried savory
♦ 1 tablespoon dried oregano
♦ 3 teaspoons dried rosemary
♦ 3 teaspoons dried marjoram
♦ 2 teaspoons dried lavender flowers
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We are not fond of thyme in my household, so I eliminated it and added a bit more marjoram to the mix. You may of course add in some thyme if you like it! I have used this spice blend to re-create this Roasted chicken with Herbes de Provence. It is very EASY and dinner is done in a flash once you get it in the oven!

You may also use Lavender Buds for a relaxing tea! Did you know that teas are also called infusions? Infusions are the gentlest way to incorporate herbs into your life for healing. I have created an herbal tea made with Organic Lavender, Organic Chamomile and Organic Lemon Balm here.

It is a great way to unwind in the evening, as the Organic Lavender and Organic Chamomile work together to form a relaxing effect on the mind & body. It is even safe for children as well! If you have a child who has a hard time settling down, this would make a great evening drink before bedtime. After steeping in boiling water for 10 minutes, covered, transfer to the refrigerator to cool completely so your child can drink it. You can also make it into popsicles to enjoy! This would be great for a child with a sore throat as well since Lavender has natural anti-inflammatory properties.

Considering the anti-inflammatory actions of Lavender, it would also prove beneficial to put some of my bulk tea into an old sock, tied off and let it steep in the bathtub for a full body experience of relaxation. This would help soothe achey joints, muscles and tendons. It is very important to put in a sock or gathered cloth as the herbs may clog the drain! Get some bulk Organic Lavender Chamomile Tea here.
Lavender buds contain a substance called Linalol that heals sores, burns and other wounds. It also has a camphorous aroma that helps relieve congestion and ease respiratory issues. This would come in handy as a natural way to relieve congestion you may suffer from due to allergies or sickness.

Thank you for joining me in this small journey into the culinary/edible uses for Lavender! Join me in the next post for PART TWO of Lavandula Angustifolia, a.k.a Lavender! where I will discuss the properties of the essential oil found in the flower buds. PLUS the the How & Why I use it in my products!

COMMENT BELOW on “What you have learned about lavender you didn’t know before?” for YOUR chance to WIN a 6pack of my Organic Lavender Chamomile Tea!
********CONTEST NOW CLOSED***********

Comment #4

Terressa Zook February 2, 2014 at 12:48 PM

I have yet to try cooking with lavender, but I’m definately trying this.

Please contact me TERRESSA ZOOK to claim your prize!

Organizing my life is not always so easy, BUT it is a MUST! See what I did to help in this challenging area of my life!

So here we are, a new year upon us and it is up to each and every one of us to make this one the BEST ever!!
It doesn’t matter where you find yourself at this time, YOU have the power within yourself to make it the most successful, most memorable year yet!

It is true that any successful person has to have a plan in place. When you have a ton of things to accomplish, it helps to have a system in place to keep it all compiled in manageable bites. It also helps to get your dreams and goals down so you can make them come to fruition. I was so thrilled to have found Leonie Dawson!

She has been motivating Women for years now, and i fell in love with her enthusiasm and bright spirit instantly 🙂
I watched her video and signed up for her free e-book. I was hooked & wanted more!

Now to address the “Organization” need, I saw she had a workbook to help me with this. I was excited to get it, and found that it is in a pdf format to download instantly! I purchased the one for my business. She also has one for your life as well. It is illustrated with her whimsical pictures and wonderful uplifting words. It is like a great friend guiding me along to map out my year for success. Check it out here.

It is only $9.95 and you get a TON of info to get you organized! It starts out with the closing of 2013 before diving into 2014.

I used the back of a stack of scrap paper to print mine out on. I used a 1 inch binder, with my own personalized cover, to put it all together!

I used pictures of what means the most to me and what inspires me! You can see a picture of my 2 loves, my Husband & my dear little one♥ Sunflowers, soaps, birds….. Make YOURS whatever speaks to you so you are excited each day you check in and get re-focused!

Now in closing I would like to share with you some quotes that have stuck with me over the years!
They are ones to keep in the fore front of your mind to keep your motivation engine going!

♦What you dream about & think about you bring about.

~This one helped change my life! I was determined to make it possible to be a Work-at-Home-Mom and get OUT of the corporate world. Even though I was not supported by all of the people in my life at the time, I persisted with my own dream and made it a reality! I started by attending & becoming a member of my town’s Saturday Market. I woke up at 6am each Saturday from Late May till early September, organized my items and hand placed each item just so after putting up my tent & tables. Everyone has to start SOMEWHERE, you just have to get it in your mind to START!

♦Every moment is another chance to turn it all around!

~I remind myself of this DAILY! YOU have the power within you to make positive changes in your life. It does not matter where you come from, where you are, how much money you make………YOU ultimately have the power to make the changes in your life to make your dreams come true. EVERY choice you make is either in support of your dream, or not. Make sure you remember this in each moment you spend in your life. Here is a picture of me with my daughter, too little to walk, strapped to my front with a baby carrier. I needed to harvest my Wild Nettles for my tea I make, so I strapped her on and went to picking! Never has she ever been an “excuse” to not do what I needed to do to reach my goal. Time waits for no one, so do it NOW!

♦For every 10 “no’s” there is 1 “yes”.

~When you start your dream, there will inevitably be a large percentage of people in your life who are not on board with you. It is natural to want to have a support system with your friends & family, I wanted this too. I was so very lucky to have my Best friend Naomi on board with me:) She was one of my supporters through it all. This is a picture of us just 5 days after the birth of my baby girl. She came over to help me with my orders & take care of me while I recouped. I hope you find YOUR “Naomi” who loves you for you & helps support you on your path!
The choices I made were for ME, not them. It is MY dream, not anyone else’s. Always know in your heart that you are supported, whether you have found your “peron/group” or not yet. Seek out the groups who are in line with what you are trying to accomplish in your life. There are actually a LOT of people in the world who are on a similar path as you.

Now go out and be the best YOU that you can be and get your plan in place so you can share your gift with the world! I want to hear about it!!

Calendula……Have you met this bright yellow-orange beauty?

There is a bright orange & yellow flower that I grow each year,Calendula Officinalis. Its actions are antiseptic, anti-fungal & anti-inflammatory. It is widely used by herbalists for its gentle approach to healing.

Calendula is beneficial for dry & damaged skin thanks to its anti-inflammatory action. I saw it go to work first hand on my own eczema!
If you have ever read my story as to why I first became interested in making my own products, then you know a bit of it already.

I was 26, and up to this point in my life I did not really have any skin issues to speak of except an occasional pimple once a month. When I had started getting a dryness on my arms I reached for the well known “oat based” lotion. This helped it, but only for a few hours until it became itchy again. Thank goodness it was during the cold season, as I was able to wear long sleeves then, because it looked horrible. As time went on, it started to blister up and crack. I would find myself waking up in the middle of the night scratching my arms. When I would itch it would feel good for a split second until it started to burn like my arms were on fire!!

I am a “do-it-yourself” kind of gal, so I did not run to the Dr. right away. I planned on toughing it out until I found something that worked, THEN if it got too bad, I would go to the Dr. and possibly get a script. I started checking into all of the ingredients on my “oat-based” lotion. It was as follows: Water, Glycerin, Distearyldimonium Chloride, Petrolatum, Isopropyl Palmitate, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Benzyl Alcohol, Sodium Chloride (table salt).

I took the time to look up each one and analyze if it could be preventing my skin from healing. I know that in order for an inflammation to heal it needs to breathe and have some sort of antiseptic application to reduce swelling and speed healing. I felt that the use of the Petrolatum prevented my skin from breathing as it does not penetrate the skin, but sits on top of the skin forming a barrier. This might be good if I were wanting to protect my skin when I showered from being dried out, but it is better to take lukewarm showers to prevent this. In my quest to keep in moisture, the ingredients ending with “-alcohol” take the lotion in another direction. There are 2 types of alcohol present which cause a drying action on the skin. Here is a picture of what my eczema looked like, though I did not ever take pictures of my own arms at the time. Credits

No more store bought lotion for me! I started my research for a recipe for a lotion that was made simple with minimal ingredients. Trust me, this was not easy! Most were lotions pre-made that I could add scents to, not a recipe to make it from scratch. THEN I came upon a well known herbalist, Rosemary Gladstar!

Rosemary had so much information I started off with a few of her books. I had a feeling that I was on the right track and just went with it! It was the beginning of my love for herbs♥ This shining through my soul like a light guiding me to my own healing refuge. She goes through the steps and information to make your own lotion using beeswax, oils and healing herbs. I read it over & over & over again! I wanted to make it imprinted on my mind so I could easily create masterpieces of healing lotion for my aching skin. Calendula is highlighted in one of Rosemary’s skin healing salves. I saw this as an herb that would be good in a lotion too! So I chose the hot extraction method and began infusing my Organic Olive Oil with the Organic Calendula petals. It turned the oil a beautiful deep yellow-orange and had a gentle flower scent to it. I then used this infused oil to make my first lotion!!

After using it for only a few days, my arms itched less. Then after a week, the redness was gone and it was healing up nicely! I was completely astounded and wanted to know more. I thought to myself, “I bet there are other people out there who could benefit from this too!”. The rest you can read in my About Me page here, if you would like the continuation of how my business grew!

Now I had some healing Calendula lotion and became educated each time I opened another book on how herbs can heal our bodies. My Organic Calendula lotion is now my #1 Best Selling Lotion and continues to help people of all ages! Here are a few testimonials from my Etsy customers who shared their story.

♦Reviewed by Greek2Me: I Love it! I use it on my face (oily and acne prone) and on my 2 year old son who has eczema. Works great on both! Leaves my skin glowy and smooth 🙂

♦Reviewed by Chelsea: This cream is so amazing!!! I suffer from occasional dry patches of skin and eczema, but after a few days of applying this cream, my once rough skin is transformed into wonderful silky softness 🙂 Thank You so much for creating this fantastic product! ♡

♦Barbara Rowlete: I am 67 years old, Irish,and have so many problems with my skin. I had cancer 4 years ago, and have done organic foods, and as many organic skin care items as my skin will allow. I really like the lotion it goes into the skin,and with my dry skin after one application was so much better.

I also incorporated the Organic Calendula in my most popular lip balm, Organic Calendula Chamomile. Its anti-inflammatory properties also help provide relief from dry, cracked lips. It is MY favorite lip balm as well! I have one in my purse, one in the car, one in my makeup case and one by my bed! Obsessed a little? 🙂

I hope I have helped educate you on how Calendula can be one of the best assets in your herbal arsenal!! Next herb to be highlighted is a long time favorite……Lavender!!

Would you like to try some of my Organic Calendula products for yourself? Comment below as to why YOU need Calendula in your life for a chance to WIN a 1 1/2oz Organic Calendula Lotion of your own!!
**Don’t forget to put in your email address so I can contact you if you win!


THE GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED as of 01/24/2014
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
THE WINNER is ………… Angie!!

Angie ~~ January 20, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Wow, calendula sounds like a miracle ingredient! I get this weird little patch of eczema during the winter times on the top area of my eye lid, and nothing I have has healed it. I would love to see if that lotion can help relieve that sensitive area of my face.
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CONGRATULATIONS Angie on winning your OWN 1 1/2oz Organic Calendula Lotion!!

Organic Rosemary Hair Rinse – I want what she has!

For half of my 40 plus years of life, I have worn my hair short.  Very short.  My mother, who had four daughters, was too busy messing with all of our hair, especially mine.  She didn’t allow me to have long hair, and I got used to having a short cropped cut. You see, my hair is very abundant.  I have such thick hair that every single hair stylist I have visited so far has exclaimed, “My, you have a lot of hair!”

While many women wish for this kind of abundance, I have always considered my plentiful hair a curse.  When I moved to the United States from Germany 20 years ago, I started growing my hair long.  My husband likes me hair long, and I do, too – most of the time.  Except it gets poofy in damp weather, and folks, let’s face it: I live in a climate that gets 100 inches of precipitation a year!  What am I thinking?  If I were vain, I would moved a long time ago.

When I first met Melissa from Honey Bee Holistics, I was struck by her gorgeous hair.  It, too, is thick and naturally wavy like mine, but hers looked so… un-frizzy, so… contained and shiny.  I wanted what she had.
Enter her organic rosemary hair rinse.

This is how she keeps her hair so stunning, and I wanted a piece of that action.  So I headed to the shower, washed my hair, and then tested out this hair rinse.  It’s a concentrate, so you you have to dilute it in a quart of water.  All it takes is a little squirt of the concentrate.  It is so fragrant!  It smells like a woodland forest, which is just about my favorite smell of all times.
Melissa advises to massage the rinse into the scalp after cleansing.  The massage and ingredients help with circulation, healing and skin regeneration of the scalp, which in turns makes the hair grow healthier.  I knew that vinegar is great as a hair rinse because it helps restore proper pH, but never tried it before.  This hair rinse contains organic apple cider vinegar infused with rosemary, as well as essential oils of rosemary and rosewood (hence the heavenly smell).
In short:  I love it!!!  I usually have to put massive conditioner in my hair because it’s pretty dry, but I haven’t used any conditioner ever since using this hair rinse.  My hair is shinier, softer and looks healthier than it did when I religiously used conditioner after shampooing.  And it makes my hair smell so nice!

*****Thank you Corina for such a wonderful review!! Corina’s hair IS so very thick and beautiful! I am so glad it worked out for her:) She shared with me that she had used henna on her hair, and the rinse did not effect the color at all. My Mom, who colors her hair professionally, DID in fact see a bit of her hair color wash out. I am bringing this up just in case you DO color your hair, you might see a washing out of sorts happen when you use the rinse.

I would like to point out a few benefits that the Organic Rosemary Hair rinse has that other commercial conditioners do not toute!

♦Organic Rosemary is a circulatory stimulant! The many benefits of the rosemary plant {Rosmarinus officinalis} extend beyond cleansing, it also stimulates the hair follicles to increase hair growth. This is another reason why I include in the instructions for use, to gently massage the rinse into your scalp with your finger pads. Remember to NEVER use your nails for massaging as this damages the scalp.

♦Organic Rosemary is also an age-old remedy for dandruff. The branches used to be used as hair brushes so the oils would distribute throughout the hair & scalp. It stimulates the skin on the scalp to regenerate and renew, thus improving the health of the scalp, reducing dandruff & itchiness over time.
*This information along with other helpful tips are found in this book.

♦The natural resins found in the rosemary also help to darken brunette hair types over time. If you have ever pulled off the fronds of a rosemary twig with your hands, you know what the resins feel like! It is a sticky sap that comes out of the rosemary petals. Of course, in the hair rinse it is not sticky as it has been dissolved by the acids in the vinegar.
The acids in the vinegar is what helps bring your hair to the proper pH balance after shampooing. I would recommend one of my shampoo bars for the shampooing part! Like my Organic Walnut Apricot shampoo bar here

I have made a new batch of this shampoo bar this week and it will be cured & ready for sale on Valentines Day, 02/14!!
I WILL take pre-orders if you are interested in claiming a bar of your own ahead of time, or you can visit my Etsy shop to pre-order!

♦There is also Wild Nettle infused into the vinegar rinse as well! Wild nettle, Urtica dioica, grows wild here in the Pacific Northwest. It only shoots up from March-May, so each year you will find me in the fields harvesting my heart out so I have enough for the year ahead! It contains Iron, Vitamin C and minerals from the soil that help to re-mineralize & heal the scalp.

So as you see, there are many benefits to using my Organic Hair Rinse for Brunettes! You can find the rinses for Brunettes & Blondes here in my Etsy shop. The formula for red hair is available by custom request only at this time!

Coming soon…………. Information on another favorite herb of mine, Calendula! I will go over the benefits of this flower, plus the Why & How I incorporate it into my products!

!!!!WIN an 8oz bottle of your OWN hair rinse formulated for your hair type: brunette, blonde or red hair!
ALL you have to do is leave a comment below answering the question: Why do YOU need to switch your conditioner to Honey Bee Holistics Organic Vinegar Hair Rinse? How do you think it can help YOUR hair?

GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED——- 01/22/2014
The WINNER is……………….

loucheenaJanuary 18, 2014 at 8:33 AM

I would LOVE to win the rose rinse! I’ve been doing my best to grow my hair long and thick, and I think all of the benefits of the rosemary stimulating the scalp would make it even easier for my hair to grow.

Rose Ales chulo282009@live.com

CONGRATULATIONS Rose for being the WINNER of the 8oz Organic Rosemary Hair Rinse!!