Thursday, February 26, 2015

Lavender Blue

"Lavender blue, dilly, dilly..." Thus begins the name of a silly song I hated playing on the piano long ago. As I've aged, however, I've noted the amazing benefits of lavender, mainly as an adaptogen, an agent that aids in adapting to stress. (Mid-week blues, anyone?) Referring back to my last post, I noted the benefits of common household items in our beauty routine. Here, I'd like to expand on and oil that is often used in "big beauty" brands but can be made in the comfort of our own homes. This oil, as you may have guessed, is lavender oil.

Lavender can be grown easily in many locations. Where I spend my summer in Connecticut, lavender may not grow for the many miles it does in Provence, France but can be easily adapted to the environment. Lavender is a pretty hardy shrub and can act as either an annual or perennial, depending on where you plant it. If you have an apiary, lavender serves as a source of pollen for bees to produce delicious honey. In general, it is an easy "staple" crop for your potted or in-ground garden. In addition to lending a beautiful fragrance, lavender can produce a beautiful oil, as its presence in many an expensive essential oil tells us. Here's the thing, making an essential oil of lavender is difficult. What is much easier is making a lavender infused oil. 

Lavender infused oil is relatively easy to make. A few of the elements you would need include either fresh or dried lavender, (your local farmer's market or L'Occtaine should carry this product.) olive or safflower oil, a mortar and pestle and cheese cloth. Relatively simple ingredients for something which would otherwise cost you an arm and/or leg at you local health food store. To make a lavender infused oil, you can access the recipe here. To use, you can give as a gift, apply as massage oil or use as part of your oil cleansing routine. You can access the oil cleanse on the Wellness Mama blog. Enjoy!

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