DIY After Sun Aloe Vera Gel with Lavender Essential Oil

This simple aloe vera and lavender gel is perfect to use after a day at the pool or out in the sun. Only 3 ingredients and 1 minute to make!

It’s getting hot out here!

I grew up on the west coast of sunny Florida and I spent plenty of time year round outdoors.  If it wasn’t the beach it was the pool or somewhere else outside.  And since Florida is the land of perpetual summer (like 11 months out of the year) my poor pale skin didn’t get much break from the sun’s rays!

I remember always putting aloe vera on my skin after a long day outside and how wonderful it felt on my skin.  It was neon green goop, and it smelled like coconuts, or something.  In retrospect, it didn’t really resemble aloe vera, but what’s a girl to do who hadn’t actually grown any plants as a teenager?

Did you use the green goo?

This year we’ve taking the kids to the pool a lot!  My youngest is always begging to go outside and play or to jump in our backyard pool.  I think that’s just what happens when kids are trapped inside the house in the land of long winters.

So since it is almost swim lesson season and my kids are spending a lot of time in our above ground pool, we need an after sun solution that works and is not filled with questionable junk.

You see I looked up that “green goo” I used to call aloe and realized, not so much.

You should check your favorite after sun products, you may be surprised at the not so natural things that they contain.

Time for something safer

My daughter’s little pink cheeks need something that is safe, you know?  I don’t want to put chemicals on that sweet skin.  So I did some reading and came up with a simpler, safer solution.

Actual aloe vera.

Revolutionary, right? 

When we lived in Florida we had aloe plants everywhere, outside the front door, in a pot by the kitchen sink, everywhere.  Aloe is super easy to grow there, but here in the dry, wild west?  Not so much.

So decided that this DIY After Sun Gel needed a little help from the health food store.  And it was easier than I had thought it would be.

Here’s what you’ll need:

Want to see how simple it is to make? Check out the video of me making it below!

Watch how to make the DIY After Sun Aloe Vera Gel:

But you’re probably looking for a printable recipe for this after sun aloe vera gel, aren’t you?

Well here you go!

DIY After Sun Aloe Vera Gel with Lavender Essential Oil
 
Author:
Recipe type: DIY
Prep time:
Total time:
 
This simple, 3 ingredient DIY After Sun Aloe Vera Gel is cooling, soothing, and the perfect thing to smooth on your skin after a long day outside in the sun.
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup pure aloe vera gel
  • ½ tsp vitamin e oil
  • 24 drops Lavender Essential Oil (I recommend Young Living brand)
  • 3 oz. silicone bottle
Instructions
  1. Mix all of the ingredients in a small glass bowl.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a 3 oz. silicone tube.
  3. Store in the fridge between uses for a cool, soothing treat for the skin!
Notes
The quality of essential oils you use will definitely impact your results from this project. We recommend Young Living brand and had fantastic results with it in this recipe.

How did it work?

My little daughter spent most of the afternoon last week in our little pool and her skin was in need of some care, and this aloe gel worked very well.  She commented “Mama, I love this!  Can you put more on my face?”  We applied it all over her face, arms and shoulders (three times over the course of the afternoon and evening) and in the morning her skin looked and felt great.

So whip up a batch and throw it in your beach bag or backpack and enjoy how fantastic your skin feels, even after a long day in the sun!

Tell me, where are you headed outdoors this summer?  Will you be taking this DIY after sun aloe and lavender gel with you?

This simple, 3 ingredient DIY After Sun Aloe Vera Gel is cooling, soothing, and the perfect thing to smooth on your skin after a long day outside in the sun.

 


DIY Essential Oil Deodorant | Quick and Easy!

 

This DIY essential oil deodorant recipe is my personal favorite. It takes just a few minutes to make and lasts a long time.You know how it goes:  girl meets deodorant.  Deodorant works.  Deodorant smells nice.

All is well.

Girl discovers deodorant contains nasty chemicals.  Girl wants to break up with deodorant.  Girl looks for more natural and non-toxic deodorant options.  Feels frustrated by what is available.

Girl buys deodorant rock.  Tries it.  Rock starts to smell like girl.  End of relationship.

Girl buys expensive all natural deodorant.  Gives it a week.  Still smells like a feed lot.

Girl buys less expensive “all-natural” deodorant at the health food store.  Stops stinking!  On a whim looks up the ingredients on the SkinDeep Database.  Girl realizes this deodorant is just as toxic as the one she ditched in the first place.

Girl finds herself back at square one.  In need of a non-toxic deodorant that works.

That was me, and then I found this DIY essential oil deodorant recipe!

I’ve tweaked it and tested it and made it well and thoroughly my own.  But I am super glad to share the “secret” with you, too.

Watch how I make my DIY Essential Oil Deodorant below:

Here are the things you’ll need:

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Gently melt the coconut oil over low heat (if it isn’t already liquid at room temperature)
  2. Take the oil off the heat and add the cornstarch, baking soda, and essential oils.
  3. Stir until completely combined and as smooth as you can make it.
  4. Allow to thicken up before use.
  5. When ready to use, just scoop a small amount (less than a dime) out of the jar and rub into your armpits!  Re-apply as needed.

NOTE:  This is a deodorant recipe, meaning if used and re-applied it should help keep the smell away.  It won’t keep you from sweating.  Which is actually good, because sweating is good for you! 

The great thing is, that once you’ve made this essential oil deodorant, it will last a very long time.  Not only does it last a long time, but it is very cost-effective.

Want to print this DIY Essential Oil Deodorant Recipe?

DIY Essential Oil Deodorant | Quick and Easy!
 
Author:
Prep time:
Total time:
 
Ingredients
  • a glass pint sized jar, preferably wide-mouth
  • ½ cup extra virgin coconut oil (not fractionated coconut oil)
  • ½ cup cornstarch (or arrowroot powder)
  • ½ cup baking soda
  • 30-40 drops essential oil of your choice
Instructions
  1. Gently melt the coconut oil over low heat (if it isn't already liquid at room temperature)
  2. Take the oil off the heat and add the cornstarch, baking soda, and essential oils.
  3. Stir until completely combined and as smooth as you can make it.
  4. Allow to thicken up before use.
  5. When ready to use, just scoop a small amount (less than a dime) out of the jar and rub into your armpits! Re-apply as needed.
Notes
I like Young Living brand Tea Tree myself. Other oils you could try would be Purification blend, Lavender plus Lime, Lemon plus Frankincense, Geranium plus Lemon. Just use what you like!

 

So, what essential oil combo will you be using in your next batch?  Let me know in the comments, I’m always looking to try new combos!

 


Delicious Picnic Recipes Flavored with Essential Oils

It’s picnic season again!

Cue the cheering!

The chill of winter and spring is finally past and we are now ready for outdoor barbecues, picnics and meals of all kinds.

I am so excited!  You are too, right?

After all, that’s why you’re looking for some picnic recipes, I’d imagine.

These are some of my favorites, and of course, they are all flavored with essential oils.

They’re so tasty, and my two kids both love these recipes.  In fact as soon as I finish this article, we’re heading out to the store to grab the ingredients for our next picnic!

What’s a picnic or barbecue without potato salad?

Zesty Potato Salad with bacon and chives

This is my favorite potato salad recipe by far, and it makes a lot, so you could halve the recipe and do just fine.  It’s both creamy and tangy and the bacon, chives and dill essential oil are so, so good together.  YUM!

Get the Potato Salad recipe HERE

How about some Dill-Icious Deviled Eggs?

Game Changing Deviled Eggs

See what I did there? It’s an essential oils joke!  Ok, I’m just so happy that I can make these eggs for a picnic again.  I can’t help it.

My husband and I are the deviled egg eaters in our house, mainly because my oldest is allergic, but we can polish off a full recipe of them in just a few days. We love them!  I think you will, too.

Get the Deviled Eggs recipe HERE

Berry-Licious Fruit Salad with an Orange and Mint kick!

A fresh summertime fruit salad full of zesty citrus and mint flavors. Perfect to cool you down on a hot day.

This was one of my kids’ favorite recipes from all last summer.  We made it several times and it was so tasty that when we had leftovers we would eat them for breakfast.

This recipe is mainly berries, so it’s easiest to make for early summer and late spring picnics, but you could make your own combination of fruits and use the same yogurt dressing.  Sweet and yummy!

Get the Fruit Salad Recipe HERE

Serving up chips and dips?

Looking for a fresh, bright salsa recipe? This is it. Makes a quart and won't last the afternoon!

I love to make fresh salsas, and since there are more local and fresh vegetables this time of year, we enjoy this salsa fresca recipe with lime!

If you’re feeling really ambitious you can make your own chips, but I think you’ll find that you’d rather just dig in right away!  This is a mild salsa recipe, so feel free to spice it up with extra chilies if you like it hotter!

Get the Salsa Fresca with Lime recipe HERE

Ready for something cool and refreshing?

Sugar Free Strawberry Limeade

A picnic wouldn’t be complete without a refreshing drink!  Since we don’t do sodas around our house this fruity, icy drink is the best thing to cool off with on a warm day.

The taste of the lime and strawberry is the perfect summer drink flavor combination.  If you’re not sugar-free, you can try sweetening with a little agave nectar or simple syrup!

Get the Strawberry Limeade recipe HERE

Those look so good, I can’t wait to dig in!

Which recipes will you try?  Share with us in the comments!


How to Make an Essential Oil Nasal Inhaler

Essential oils are great for your health, but they're not always convenient to use on the go. That's why you need to know how to make a essential oil nasal inhaler. Get the DIY with video demonstration here!

How to make an essential oil nasal inhaler!

I love to carry my essential oils everywhere and so my purse is usually full of several full sized bottles.  I have a veritable essential oil stash in my bag nearly everywhere I go.

My husband on the other hand?  Carrying a bottle of essential oil with him isn’t going to happen.  Don’t get me wrong, he’s as oil-loving as they come, but he can’t stop long enough at work to pull out oils and make a decision on what to use.

Enter the essential oil nasal inhaler!

We’ve loved the convenience of making up nasal inhalers with his favorite blends and single oils.  It makes it very easy for him to grab a particular inhaler, use it and get the support he needs, and get back to work.

Ever since we started making essential oil nasal inhalers we’ve found all sorts of helpful uses for them.  So here’s just a few of the places you may find it helpful to have an essential oil nasal inhaler.

At work

As much as you love essential oils, it’s possible that your cubicle mates may not.

Whether it is just a particular oil or just the idea of oils in general, not all workplaces welcome a diffuser.  Making up a few nasal inhalers to keep in your desk drawer makes it easy to enjoy the benefits of your oils without causing co-workers to give you the stink-eye or having to deal with complaints.

Or maybe you work a job that keeps you on your feet all the time.  If you don’t have an office to yourself (and that is likely most people), having a few nasal inhalers to choose from and keep in a pocket can come in handy when you find yourself needing an oil, but not having the ability to use them the way you would at home.

Some diffusers I’d keep with me at work would be:

  • One for supporting feelings of energy
  • One for helping promote good mood
  • And any seasonal oils you might need for good health

At school

The chances that your child’s teacher will diffuse essential oils in the classroom is probably low.  Most schools won’t allow kids to carry remedies of any type either, and that likely includes essential oils.

However, having an essential oils nasal inhaler would be a much easier way to help your child get concentrated benefits throughout the day.  Many parents add oils to a diffuser bracelet for their children, but having a few in a backpack or their desk would be possibly helpful for:

  • Stress before tests or quizzes
  • Focus and attention
  • Purifying the air they are breathing
  • Helping to comfort and soothe after lunch

Traveling

If you’re a nervous traveler like me, then you probably like to take some oils with you in the car or on the plane.  Having a personalized essential oil nasal inhaler with you in those situations would let you use your oils discretely and still get the benefits you need at that moment.

Not to mention, but when you’re in a hotel or a guest in someone else’s home, diffusing isn’t always an option.  Carrying a few nasal inhalers would take up much less room than a diffuser and every bottle of oil you might need.

Some of the ways I’ve used essential oils while traveling that I would make up a nasal inhaler for include:

  • Sleep and relaxation in a new place
  • Calming nerves while traveling
  • Helping kids to feel calm and happy on planes or on long car rides
  • Helping feel alert while driving
  • Helping to sooth and comfort kids during winding drives in the car

As you can see, essential oil nasal inhalers have lots of uses.  You can probably think of even more ways you could use them!

How to Make an Essential Oil Nasal Inhaler:

Here’s what you’ll need:

Here’s what you do:

  1. Add your essential oils to the dish (around 20 drops should be enough for a single nasal inhaler)
  2. Dip your empty wick into the essential oils, then rub it around to get every bit of the oils)
  3. Put the cap on the bottom of the nasal inhaler.
  4. Label and give it a try!

So tell me, have you ever used an essential oil nasal inhaler?  Where do you use them? Share in the comments!


3 Essential Oil Safety Myths-Busted!

These 3 essential oil safety myths that will challenge what you think you know about essential oil safety. Click to read now or pin for later!

The internet has been passing around misinformation.  Again.

I know, I know, about what?  That’s your question at least, I’d imagine it would be mine if I was reading this article.

Essential oil safety myths.

Yeah, the internet’s been misinforming you about essential oils and about how afraid (or not afraid) you should feel when using them.

Sorry!  That stinks, I know.  

I’ve read the articles, too.  But I dug around and found out what those with decades of experience (and in many cases advanced degrees) had to say about some of the most popular scare article topics, and well…these quotes are guaranteed to challenge what you thought you knew about essential oils.

It will at least make it a little more likely that  you’ll want to un-pin some of those articles.

So let’s tackle some of those topics and look at what some actual experts say, ok? Great!

Oh, if you want to skip to a particular subject, you can click below if you want.  Otherwise, just scroll on down!

This article busts 3 pretty popular essential oil safety myths. Do you know if it is safe to drink essential oils in water? Click to read more or pin for later.

Drinking Essential Oils in Water is Dangerous

You’ve read the posts and the articles and seen the clever graphics, right?

  • One aromatherapist says that you’ll burn your mucous membranes and trash your liver if you drop a few drops of essential oil in your morning water.
  • Another item shows up in your news feed with a picture of a Styrofoam plate dissolved by a drop of lemon oil with the dire warning that the same will surely happen to your stomach and esophagus.

The articles pass around social media like wildfire, complete with knowing friends dogpiling on and sharing how foolish those “MLM oil people are” for using oils in such a dangerous way.

So what does an expert (non-MLM) have to say about casual ingestion of oils in a glass of water?  For that we turn to Kurt Schnaubelt, PhD.

Who is Kurt Schnaubelt?

Dr. Kurt Schnaubelt, PhD. is the founder of Original Swiss Aromatics and the Pacific Institute of Aromatherapy.  He founded both the company and the school in 1983 and holds advanced degrees, including a doctorate.  Dr. Schnaubelt is a published author of several well respected essential oil manuals.

On page 131 of this book, Dr. Schnaubelt explains:

“The discussion about the safety and overall usefulness of ingesting essential oils has gone on for a long time;  it consists mainly of a superficial back and forth of talking points provided by different parties with vested interests.”

Ok, so he’s saying there has been a lot of bickering for quite some time about “ingestion yes” vs. “ingestion no.”  Check!

Where does he come down on the issue?

He then goes on to explain on page 132:

“Common sense helps to resolve the issue.  While there are essential oils that are toxic when ingested…, the question immediately arises: should, for example, authentic Lemon oil not be ingested just because adulterated essential oils may contain harmful chemicals, or because some ketone-containing essential oils may be toxic?  In other words, limiting the discussion to a general ‘ingestion yes’ or an ‘ingestion no’ misses the point.”

In other words, don’t throw the essential oil baby out with the bathwater.  Just because some oils are not ok to ingest, that doesn’t mean we should consider them all to be bad.  That would be like saying that you shouldn’t drink a peppermint tea because the herb arnica can harm you if taken internally.  Clearly anyone who know anything about both herbs would know that would be comparing apples to oranges.  Each is suitable for different purposes which are completely knowable simply by checking.

On that same page he references the list of oils (he specifically lists 35 oils) on the next page as “a list of oils suitable for casual ingestion in a glass of water” and on the opposite page gives a number of suitable drops as 1-3 drops per glass of water.

He then directly says (page 132) that:

“The most effective method [to take oils internally] is to put a drop of oil in a glass of water.  Quite a number of oils will form a very fine film on top of the water.  Vigorous stirring will not really dissolve the drop but will disperse it sufficiently so that drinking the glass of water will take the oil into the stomach and ideally into the small intestine.”

It seems plain that Dr. Kurt Schnaubelt is comfortable with the causual ingestion of 1-3 drops of suitable oils in a glass of water. Interesting contrast to other articles, isn’t it?

 This article tackles 3 essential oil safety myths, one of which is the safety of lavender essential oil on young boys. Click to read, pin to save for later!

Lavender Essential Oil is Estrogenic and Shouldn’t be Used on Boys

This is one of the original essential oil rumors turned urban “fact”.  It was probably one of the very first I ever heard, even before I dared to think of using essential oils.

Of course it gave me great concern when my baby son came around and I, out of an abundance of caution, wouldn’t even use a lotion scented with lavender because someone told me that lavender essential oil was estrogenic and would cause boys (and even young girls) to grow breasts.

Hormones are scary things to mess with, and I certainly wasn’t going to take any chances.  Plus all my mommy friends were sure their boys would grow breasts, too, should any lavender essential oil be used on them.  So the deal was sealed.

Until Robert Tisserand entered the picture.

Who is Robert Tisserand?

Robert Tisserand is a 45 year aromatherapy expert, author of 3 books, with a long list of impressive credits to his name.  He is one of the most out-spoken essential oil safety authors with a comprehensive tome to his credit called Essential Oil Safety.

What does he have to say about boys (and girls) and lavender?

“Lavender oil does not mimic estrogen nor does it enhance the body’s own estrogens. It is therefore not a ‘hormone disruptor’, cannot cause breast growth in young boys (or girls of any age)” (SOURCE and full article)

He goes on to debunk the original 2007 research that started the myth of lavender causing hormone disruption explaining that the estrogen that they discovered in the study may have been from the plastic labware they used!  Want to read the full explanation?  Click here.

This article tackles 3 of the most common essential oil safety myths. Do you know if it is safe to use oils that have eucalyptus essesntial oil (or 1,8 cineole) on children? Click to read or pin to save for later!

Using Eucalyptus Essential Oil with Children (and other oils rich in 1,8 cineole) Could Stop Their Breathing

This topic gets the most mileage in mom groups where well-meaning friends warn other moms to never use oils like eucalyptus or other oils that contain a compound called 1,8 cineole on their children because there is a “high risk of respiratory arrest.”  And it’s not only eucalyptus that should be avoided, according to these articles and sources, but any essential oil blend or product that contains them.

And you know, this one I can’t necessarily blame them for, because EVERYONE wants to take care of their children.  None us wants to take cavalier or foolish risks with the lives of our children.

This is how it usually goes:

Super scary article headline of article gets you to click and read more.

The article then tells you that oils like eucalyptus (or any oil that contains a botanical compound called 1,8 cineole )can cause children to stop breathing and the article urges you to never put eucalyptus essential oil on your child anywhere on their body or to diffuse it in the home where they live.  They say that it is not safe to use on children under age six (some go up to age ten, and some go as low as age two).

Often they make sure to point out that very popular oils like Thieves contain 1,8 cineole (although they don’t actually tell you how much) and imply that you’ve done damage to your child if you’ve used it on or around them, even if they’ve not shown any negative response to the oil.

These articles typically mention a passage in the Essential Oil Safety book by Robert Tisserand (yes, the expert from above) and Rodney Young as the proof for this warning and then urge you to tell every other mom you know about this grave danger.

I’ve seen otherwise confident essential oil using moms completely ignore the actual experience of their child with one of these oils and enter into a fear based paradigm of oil use.

But is there truth to this warning? Let’s see what aromatherapist Jade Shutes says about it.

Who is Jade Shutes?

Jade Shutes is a certified aromatherapist of 25 years, trained in England and the Director of Education at The School for Aromatic Studies.  Ms. Shutes was also the President of the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA), one of the most well known and generally respected United States based essential oil associations from 2000-2003.  (Read her full biography here.)

She actually has quite a lot to say about it:

Right from the start she calls out three of the top posts that deal with the safety of 1,8 cineole rich oil use with children, calling them incorrect and explaining that this myth seems to have originated with a self-proclaimed essential oil safety website that misquotes the original safety data from Tisserand and Young.

So what do Tisserand and Young say about this particular argument? (SOURCE)

  1. Do not instill 1,8 cineole rich oils into the noses of babies or young children.  (Instilling means to put directly into the nose, so in other words, don’t put the essential oil in the nose of these children)
  2. Do not apply these oils to the face of children 10 years old and younger.

Jade Shutes explains the actual warning given by Tisserand and Young this way:

“The contraindication for Eucalyptus cineole rich oils states: “Do not apply to or near the face of infants or children under ten (10) years of age.” (page 273)

PLEASE NOTE: The contraindication does NOT state, do not use 1,8 cineole rich eucalyptus oils with children under 10 but DOES state, “do not apply to or near the face”.

This is very different from saying ‘do not use at all’. (SOURCE) emphasis mine

(Read the whole article here)

So what does that mean for parents?  

Well, it seems fairly plain that eucalyptus essential oil should be used with common sense, and as long as it is properly diluted, kept out of the nose and not applied on or near the face there should be no concern for the vast majority of children.  Can you diffuse these oils around your children?  Of course!  Just don’t put drops of the oil into their nose or put a diffuser INTO their nostril and you’ll be good to go.

So what about essential oil safety?

I absolutely want everyone who uses essential oils to do so safely and get the results that they want.  With that said, it is very easy to assume everything passed around on the internet about safety is true.  I encourage you, when you see a shocking article, do what you can do read more.  Don’t just take it as fact.

Who knows?  Maybe you’ll uncover another essential oil safety myth of your own.

Which of these 3 essential oil safety myths surprised you most?  Let me know in the comments!

What other myths should I tackle next?  Let me know that in the comments, too!

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