All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning these precious oils (or a pair of your choice*), is share a picture via social media that captures your ‘favourite scent’. You can use any of the following platforms:
Email – email your images to firstname.lastname@example.org (note images may be shared on social media platforms.
The photo doesn’t have to be related to essential oils, it can be of anything that gives a sense of the smell you like, from your favourite flower to ingredients in your favourite meal, it could even be a person who you love the smell of…
Feel free to enter more than one image if you discover you have lots of favourite scents.
*You may choose another pair of essential oils as a prize if you prefer with a value up to £40.
The competition closes at midnight on Christmas Eve and the winner will be announced on Christmas Day. Open to all.
More Treats for November & December 2020: If you need to stock up on essential oils or aromatherapy accessories before the end of the year please take advantage of my £5 gift voucher, just enter the code CHERISH at the checkout. You can also request free gift wrapping, just let me know in the notes section if you require this.
The lead up to the end of the year can often feel a little fretful rather than festive, so here are some recommendations for essential oils to support you as the ‘silly season‘ takes over:
Orange & Clove for a warming, comforting scent that has a powerful cleansing & anti-microbial action, a perfect combination for using in a burner or diffuser* to scent your home and ward off winter bugs. You can get a similar effect by piercing cloves into the peel of an orange which releases their essential oils – as well as smelling delicious it will sanitise the atmosphere. Place them around your home, especially close to the fire as the heat will encourage more essential oils to be released.
Fir & Pine for supporting the immune system & respiratory conditions during vulnerable times. Use these Christmas tree oils on a tissue and inhale throughout the day, or blend them into a balm* to massage across your chest – you can use them in this way if you have come down with a cold, flu or virus and also if you want to avoid them.
Cardamom & Grapefruit to help soothe, digest & detox – these would be lovely made into a blend* if you happen to have over indulged over the Christmas period. Find a comfortable place to lay down, massage the ‘digestive blend’ around your tummy in gentle anti-clockwise circles, begin just under your ribcage and massage around the centre of your tummy covering the small intestine, gradually moving down towards the start of the ascending colon, follow this up the right side of your body, as it becomes the transverse colon across the body under the ribs and then onto the descending colon down the left side of your body. Finish with a few large anti-clockwise circles and take a moment to rest.
Frankincense & Myrrh – these two oils come with extremely precious qualities, they support moments to stop, breathe gently and come back to yourself – especially useful during times of stress and overwhelm. I like to use them in a roll-on perfume blend* to keep in my pocket and apply when ever I feel to.
You can use all of the recommended blends in a burner or diffuser* to scent your home, or dilute in a carrier oil to massage into your skin and add to a bath*.
Any oil you choose to use with the intention to truly nurture and take care of yourself will support on some level, so enjoy experimenting and feel free to get in touch if you would like assistance.
One of the many things I love about essential oils is how the effect on our body is connected to the plant itself and that plants action in life. Trees produce oxygen by their mode of respiration which supports us with our respiration, so, it seems natural for the essential oil from trees to support conditions that affect our respiratory system, like colds and coughs. When you breath in essential oils you can feel it in your body immediately, and this is particularly prominent with tree oils such as eucalyptus and pine. You can feel them cleaning and clearing as they pass from the tip of your nose deep down into your lungs. I feel my chest expand, even my posture changes and I will naturally be more open and stand taller – just like a tree.
Everything is connected so it goes beyond the respiratory system, but it’s a good example of feeling for yourself in your body, how the oils can support.
Frankincense & myrrh have a less fierce action on the respiratory system, much more calming, helping to bring a gentleness back to your breath. They are a great support for conditions such as asthma, panic attacks, stress, anxiety and for use in meditation.
Frankincense is a great oil to scent the room with when you’re taking a moment to breath gently. Myrrh has a much subtler smell so is not so prominent in a burner, it’s quite sticky too so may be best avoided in diffusers incase it damages. I prefer to massage this into my wrists to support connection with myself. Click here to read my blog on using myrrh in this way.
Frankincense and myrrh are also examples of how essential oils can act on our bodies in the same way they do so as a tree in life. The essential oil comes from the resin that is produced by the tree when the bark is cut or injured. The resin is a sticky, thick, goo that covers the affected area and then hardens to seal and protect the damaged site, it’s a bit like the way humans bleed and form a scab to protect their bodies when the skin is broken.
Can you see why frankincense and myrrh are used in skin care? The resin is healing the tree and the oil that is produced from the resin is used for it’s healing properties on our skin. Frankincense is one of the most popular ingredients in many skin care products. Myrrh is particularly affective in helping festering and difficult to heal wounds, especially in the mouth -it’s useful for mouth ulcers and popular in oral care for this reason (see my blog on gargling with myrrh for more details). I also like to use myrrh on dry, hard, cracked skin, it’s the base of my blend for scars and usually appears in the skin care products I make -it has recently been working wonders for a client with bed sores.
Benzoin is similar to frankincense and myrrh, it is a tree that produces a resin that is made into an essential oil. It is very protective to the skin but has a very pleasing vanilla like scent that makes it particularly comforting to use for stress and anxiousness as well as in skin care.
I find that even the character of trees confirms how they work on the body. Large, tall strong trees like pines and firs and huge eucalyptus trees with tonnes of leaves are very expansive to the respiratory system, powerfully cleansing and clearing. Whereas the more delicate small trees like frankincense and myrrh work in a gentler way, supporting reconnecting when you feel out of sorts. Both are very powerful but different in action, a reflection of ourselves as humans; we all have different strengths and qualities that offer support in different ways.
You could not compare the delicacy of a flower that may last a few days or weeks to the strength of a huge oak that could live for generations. One is not better than another, for each brings a natural beauty that is needed. In this same way, we can appreciate each other for our natural qualities, we all have something to bring to this world of value and it is a true gift for humanity when we share ourselves in full.
A list of the most popular Essential Oils, their Uses & Cautions (in alphabetical order).
To help you choose which essential oils to use in what ever you’re making, be it bath blend or room scent, here is a list you can refer to with some of their most useful properties and any cautions you need to be aware of.
I will be constantly updating this list, so if there are any essential oils that do not appear yet or that you would like more details on, then please contact me, or comment on the post and I can add to the list.
Caution ~ Avoid in pregnancy (due to varied methyl chavicol/estragole content). Maximum 2% blend strength.
Black pepper ~ Similar to eucalyptus in effect – powerfully clearing, specifically great for respiratory system, especially lungs. Also great for muscle aches & pains but black pepper is much more warming and gentle than eucalyptus. A lovely oil to use in the evening in a bath blend, or if you feel you are run down or ‘coming down’ with something.
Chamomile (german) ~ Very anti-inflammatory, so perfect for any condition with inflammation from bumps and bruises to arthritis and gout. It’s also good for skin inflammation especially bites, but Roman Chamomile ay be more suitable if it’s for delicate sore skin, as it’s more gentle.
Caution ~ Sensitisation possible, avoid with ragweed allergy.
Geranium ~ Very sweet and feminine, balances the endocrine system, a great oil to use to support females cycles and any hormone related issues, including irregular periods and menopause. A very lovely, sweet and fresh oil for young women. Read more on using geranium oil here: How to Use Geranium Essential Oil to Support Women’s Health
Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) ~ Powerfully cleansing and clearing. Helps clear stress and tension. Great for supporting sleep. Very anti-microbial and great natural antiseptic. Since lavender is so versatile, there are several blogs on using lavender to help you make the most of it:
Caution ~ There are no cautions with Lavandula angustifolia, it is a very user friendly oil, but just ensure you buy a pure, good quality oil, especially if you intend to use it neat on your skin -you don’t want to be using a synthetic perfume quality oil on a spot or graze.
Lemon ~ Cleansing and detoxifying, ideal for using in a face cleansing balm (with lavender). Fantastic oil to use in a burner to cleanse and brighten the atmosphere especially when someone is sick.
Caution ~ Phototoxic, meaning it reacts with sunlight (and sun beds), so avoid use on skin if exposed to sunshine. Citrus oils have a shorter shelf life, meaning they react with oxygen much quicker and can cause sensitisation and irritation.
Mandarin ~ Very gentle to the skin, soothing and calming, a lovely one to add to an evening blend or for use in a blend for stretch marks. A great oil for children. Click here for the stretch mark balm recipe including mandarin oil: How to make a Stretch Mark Balm
Myrrh ~ Deeply healing skin oil, especially for festering, difficult to heal wounds. Great for connecting to and supporting breathing very gently. See my blog on Myrrh Essential Oil for more details and Gargling with Myrrh for oral problems.
Caution ~ Avoid in pregnancy, although can be useful in 3rd trimester to prepare for birth -seek professional advise here though.
Neroli (orange blossom) ~ Apart from smelling completely beautiful and delicate, it is very soothing and calming to the nervous system, and so has an amazing effect on all that the nervous system controls, so this would include digestion, muscle tension & emotions. It is a great oil for melting stress, and anxiety.
Peppermint ~ Great for muscle aches and pains, sometimes has a tingling sensation, great for refreshing feet. Supports digestion, would make a great tummy or foot balm. Read more on using peppermint oil in a digestive massage here: Digestive Massage with Essential Oils
Caution ~ Do not use if cardiac fibrillation. Maximum blend strength 3%. Avoid use with babies.
Rose (Rose otto – Rosa damascena or Rose absolute – Rosa centifolia)~ Deeply nurturing, great for those self-loving moments. Very supportive for women and men. A gorgeous oil to use in beauty and skin care, particularly for mature and dry skin. Rose is one of my favourite oils so here are a few blogs to learn more on this exquisite oil:
Thyme (Mild – Thyme linalool)~ Powerfully anti-microbial, and anti-fungal, great for coughs, especially deep chesty ones. A fantastic oil to include in a blend for athletes foot.
Caution ~ Use this mild version of thyme. Avoid use on hyper sensitive or damaged skin. Do not use with children under 2 years. Maximum blend strength 2%.
Yarrow ~ this unusual bright ink blue oil is highly anti-inflammatory and is great for any conditions where inflammation is present e.g. gout, arthritis, allergies, pain, breaks, strains. See my blog on Yarrow Essential Oil for more information.
Caution ~ yarrow can contain a varying amount of camphor in it, which means it is advisable to avoid with epilepsy, in pregnancy, and could cause sensitisation in ragweed allergy sufferers.
Note: Always ensure you buy good quality essential oils from a trustworthy source. Check out my own range of carefully sourced essential oils from organic farmers and artisan distillers: Essential Oils by Laura Hoy