Top 4 Herbs for Beautiful Skin

by Wellness with Kristen

Whether it's winter or summer, or somewhere in-between, our skin needs to be taken care of. Your skin is your body's largest organ and reflects the overall state of your health.

So what is skin's purpose and why do we have it? For many reasons of course, but the main one being a form of protection from the outside environment. Sunburn, a tan, freckles, and age spots are all results of overexposure to UV rays. These rays are always present, even during a super cloudy day, but do the most damage when we spend more time outside during the warmer months. Since summer is a few weeks away, I thought I'd share some of the best herbs that not only heal and protect your skin, but keep it healthy and beautiful.  

1. ALOE- Aloe has skin soothing properties, after all, it is what you use after getting a sunburn! It is known to heal wounds by increasing collagen production by up to 90%! 

How to use: Aloe plants are available at grocery stores, flower shops and the like. Break off a piece of aloe from the plant, slice it open, and scrape out the inside. Rub it on your skin several times a day. Aloe gel and juice can also be purchased and used accordingly.

 

2. COMFREY ROOT- Comfrey is a connective tissue herb, so it helps heal your skin if damaged in anyway. It's known as a "cell proliferate" which means it stimulates cell regeneration. If you have a bad sunburn with blistering, this is the herb for you!

How to use: Make a strong tea (infusion) of comfrey and use a cotton ball to gently apply it your burn several times a day. 

 

3. HORSETAIL- Horsetail is a herb with a high nutrient content (specifically silica), it builds body tissues, and is an excellent wound healer. 

How to use: Horsetail is available in capsules which can be found at your local drugstore, powder which you can find online or at health food stores, and it can be made into a tea or tincture.

 

4. CALENDULA- By far one of my favorite herbs to use, Calendula is an anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial. It also heals damaged skin and bruising. 

How to use: Infuse a carrier oil of choice (sweet almond, olive, jojoba) with calendula leaves. Add some beeswax and make it into a salve that can be applied as needed.

Having healthy skin essentially comes down to what goes INTO your body. Eat healthy foods, drink plenty of water, and treat yourself like you're worth it. It is still important to get a daily does of vitamin D (which can be done by spending 15 minutes outside), but don't over do it. Of course, if you happen to not be paying attention to how long you've been outside, or when you last applied sunscreen, you now have the tools to begin the healing process. Majority of the herbs mentioned above can be purchased at www.mountainroseherbs.com. I also created a Body Balm and Body Whip that contain Comfrey and Calendula which can be purchase at Home Yoga & Barre and www.etsy.com/shop/KsApothecary.

 

 

Aromatherapy At Home

It's almost the end of the year, which means it is holiday season! What comes with the holidays? Stress

Many of us have a difficult time balancing life at this time of the year. We fall off of our routines, eat differently, feel more anxious - so what CAN we do to help take care of ourselves?

Yoga and meditation - that mind and body connection - is so important during these stressful times, but sometimes we just want to stay home and relax during the winter. We have another great option for you!

While wrapping gifts, enjoy some aromatherapy...in candle form!

This one is special during the holiday season - hence why it is named Holiday Cheer.

How does aromatherapy work?

When inhaled, the essential oils (used in aromatherapy) are absorbed into the blood stream and they send a signal to the Limbic System. This system is where our emotions are located in the brain. This is why essential oils can help with so many things like lifting depression, calming anxiety, and more!

What are the ingredients in these candles?

Holiday Cheer is a 100% natural hand poured aromatherapy candle made with soy wax, Cinnamon Leaf essential oil, Clove Bud essential oil, Douglas Fir essential oil, Sweet Orange essential oil, Atlas Cedarwood essential oil, Juniper Berry essential oil, Rosemary essential oil, and LOVE. :)

As a combination, these oils are shown to "improve mental clarity and mood, reduce signs of anxiety and stress, regulate appetite, fight fatigue and insomnia, congestion, headaches, and colds."

What are the benefits of each of the essential oils in Holiday Cheer?

  • Cinnamon Leaf essential oil: Balances the body and helps with the transmission of neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin. Imbalances in these two chemicals in the brain is related to depression.
  • Clove Bud essential oil: Acts as an anti-inflammatory. 
  • Douglas Fir essential oil: Helps to clear the sinuses as well as helping with breathing and any respiratory issues.
  • Sweet Orange essential oil: Alleviates anxiety, depression, anger, and any inflammation in the body, like having a cold .
  • Atlas Cedarwood essential oil: This is a grounding and calming essential oil. Great to reduce stress.
  • Juniper Berry essential oil: Purifies the air and is a relaxant that does not act as a sedative.
  • Rosemary essential oil: Acts as a decongestant, helps with staying focused and helps memory retention.

Light this candle anytime this winter when you need a little "yoga" and mindfulness at home!

These candles are created by Kristen Miller, an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach studying Herbalism. Check out her website here! Kristen provides services through Home Yoga & Barre, and her candles can be purchased or pre-ordered at the studio.