I have acne prone skin. Any changes in usual routine, travelling and change in water affects my skin. Like any other woman with acne, I am always on the quest for discovering a home remedy or a product that can give a flawless skin. I usually steer clear of aestheticians and so called experts who give illogical suggestions but few months back I came across an aesthetician who approaches to skin problems in a more logical and scientific way.
She suggested me to gently exfoliate my skin with enzyme based exfoliators weekly once and then apply an astringent. Though she mentioned few names, I decided to do my own research on enzyme exfoliation and exfoliators. After a long search on internet I came across exfoliating cleansers with papaya enzyme exfoliation and bamboo stem extract exfoliation.
Outermost layer of skin cells known as corneocytes undergo shedding naturally for every few days. This process is important for flawless and healthy looking skin as it promotes the renewal of outer layer of skin with new cells.
In acne prone skin, the strong binding between the corneocytes as well as between the cells of hair follicle present in skin layers impedes the shedding process.
This build up of dead skin cells at the exterior and also at the hair follicle level of skin layer causes the blockade of skin pores leading to acne.
Exfoliation of skin helps the shedding process by decreasing the binding of corneocytes with one another.
As much acne prone skin needs careful exfoliation while doing so during an acne-breakout will most likely aggravate the acne. So start your exfoliation regime only after your breakout has subsided to a moderate extent
How does enzymatic exfoliation work?
In enzymatic exfoliation, enzymes such as papain from Papaya enzyme extract, Bromelain from pineapple are used to dissolve the glue between these external dead cells of skin.
Even the natural shedding of outer layer of our skin occurs by the action of enzymes. So using external papaya enzyme exfoliation simulates the natural process of exfoliation.
The inner peel of papaya can be used for getting the benefits of papaya enzymatic exfoliation or you can look for any good quality exfoliators.
Homemade papaya enzyme exfoliator:
- You can simply use the inner peel of papaya and rub it all over the face gently for a minute or two. Then rinse with warm water.
- Alternatively, you can experiment with the papaya pulp by adding either any of the kitchen ingredients:
- For acne prone skin you can add neem powder.
- For dry skin add honey to the pulp.
- For oily skin add matcha to the pulp. Matcha is finely grounded powder of specially grown green tea.
Papaya fruit is available in all seasons and you can make your own masks and peels anytime. However, as another option you can even try over the counter papaya enzyme extract exfoliators or pineapple enzyme extract exfoliators.
Previously, I was using Everyuth naturals hydro-active Walnut and Apricot scrub (if you have dry skin or normal skin you can check here ). Though I loved the smooth feel and instant glow after its use, it made my skin oily and gave me occasional breakouts. So, I wanted to experiment with an enzyme exfoliator so after checking through the ingredients list of various exfoliators, I chose:
Clinique pep-start 2in1 exfoliating cleanser with papaya extract and bamboo stem extract:
Clinique exfoliating cleanser has not only papaya extract but also bamboo stem extract. This was enough for me to go for it. You must be wondering now what role bamboo stem extract has in skin care.
Bamboo stem extract has oil absorbing properties as well as it is rich source of silica. But I believe the purpose of bamboo stem extract in this particular exfoliating cleanser is to absorb excess oil.
Nevertheless, this exfoliator doesn’t make your skin feel tight due to dryness. If at all the product you use makes your skin dry then you should be concerned more than dry skin people. Excessive dryness of facial skin leads to an imbalance in sebum production(natural oil produced by skin)
This papaya extract and bamboo stem extract exfoliating cleanser has even silica and caffeine. Silica and Caffeine added in exfoliators aids in sloughing off the dead skin cells.
The other ingredient that caught my interest was Salicylic acid. Salicylic acid breaks the clogs of dead skin cells that block the pores of skin which finds its usefulness in acne prone skin in particular. Additionally, it also breaks the bonds between the cohesive dead cells just like papaya extract.
However, after having a bad experience with other products, I no longer purchase based on the presence of a specific ingredient.
Because even Neutrogena’s oil free cleanser has Salicylic acid as its main ingredient. Much to my dismay it made my skin worse. I didn’t want to waste the bottle and so, I started using it to rinse my hands. Shockingly, my otherwise smooth palms turned rough and felt skin peeling near finger nails.
Your takeway: If the product you bought mentions having potent ingredients such as Salicyclic acid, Glycolic acid in specific percentages above 1% then you better be prepared for something called as skin purging where your skin starts to breakout even more before it shows results.
My review of Clinique pep-start 2in1 exfoliating cleanser:
The cleanser has a lovely orange color with minute grains. I pump a dime size of the cleanser on the exfoliating brush (if you wish to purchase check here ) and then gently rub in circular motions over my wet face. After rinsing off the face I feel tight feel of the skin and so, I apply the astringent suggested by the aesthetician.
I have been doing this from few months and I can visibly see a reduction in the frequency of breakouts. I have hormonal acne so, I make sure to exfoliate my face around the PMS breakout times. Not to mention the noticeable glow this exfoliating cleanser imparts to the skin.
Astringent: You can use witch hazel or you can try the one I have posted below. Whichever you use avoid alcohol containing astringent. The one I use is from VLCC and the formulation has herbal ingredients. (You can check here )
Final note: Clinique pep-start 2in1 exfoliating cleanser with papaya extract and bamboo stem extract seems a well formulated product with all the essential ingredients that help in exfoliating an acne prone skin.
I believe it gives better results when used after steaming your face and then following up with an astringent. Drop in your comments if you would like to share your views.
You may as well check my detailed post on an oil which offers not only skincare but also enhances your makeup.
And get know what your skin needs for retaining and reviving its vitality rather than opting for the over-hyped anti-aging products
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Risk factors for diseases of neurons:
Hypertension, type-2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, arthritis and lifestyle diseases such as obesity, high body mass index in mid life, stress are considered to be risk factors for neuronal diseases. In addition, environmental and genetic factors also may contribute.
Role of diet in having a healthy mind:
Studies reported by the National Institute on Aging-Alzheimer’s Association suggest that there is a direct relation between what a person eats and how it affects his brain structure and functionality.
MIND diet for healthy functioning of mind:
MIND stands for Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay. It is a hybrid of two popular diet plans namely heart healthy Mediterranean diet and DASH diet where DASH stands for Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension. All the meal plans aim at providing foods rich in anti oxidants and cutting down on foods that could trigger free radicals that cause inflammatory processes in human body.
The following are the 9 brain healthy foods that are known to offer neuro protection and prevent dementia:
Green leafy vegetables: Study conducted by researchers in 3700 participants of age 65 and above reported that consumption of vegetables specifically the green leafy vegetables such as salad greens and spinach reduce the decline in cognition. Mind protective effects of greens are attributed to the high vitamin E content in them. However, blanching of green leafy vegetables in hot water results in loss of their neuronal protective effects.
Cabbage and root vegetables: In another research study involving 2613 participants of age group 43-70yrs, it was found that higher intake of cabbage and root vegetables prevented age related intellectual and cognitive decline.
Nuts: Almonds, walnuts, cashews, pistachios are rich in fiber, minerals, monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids which have anti oxidant and anti inflammatory properties. Regular consumption of nuts not only prevents neuronal disorders but also reverses the metabolic syndrome, a set of risk factors leading to diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. MIND diet plan recommends 5 servings of nuts every week.
Berries: Berries such as strawberry, bilberry, black currant, blue berry, black berry and mulberry are rich in flavanoids which are biologically active compounds such as anthocyanin, caffeic acid, catechin, quercetin, kaempferol and tannins. Flavanoids inhibit inflammatory reactions and promotes formation of new connections within neurons of brain, referred to as neuroplasticity.
Beans: Physostigmine, a compound found in calabar beans has memory enhancing properties.
MIND diet plan suggests eating beans at least thrice in a week.
Whole grains: Carbohydrates obtained from diet are to be from whole grains like barley, oats, buckwheat and quinoa. Whole grains not only has low glycemic index but also contains Vitamin E.
Fish: Higher intake of fish is correlated to lower reports of dementia. Salmons, tunas and halibuts are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids. MIND diet plan suggests having fish at least once a week.
Poultry: Lean meat has less cholesterol and total fat. It is recommended to have chicken, turkey or duck two times in a week.
Olive oil: Use olive oil for cooking as it has healthy and brain, heart friendly fats. It is rich in phenolic compounds that counteract accumulation of toxic proteins.
5 Foods to avoid:
Avoid or limit taking of the following foods:
- Red meat
- butter and margarine
- pastries and sweets
- fried foods and fast foods
Stress causes oxidative damage to the body. Click to read 4 ways to deal with work stress
To spread the Alzheimer’s awareness here is a brief overview on Alzheimer’s disease:
Alzheimer’s disease is a rising mental health problem in populations of presenile and senile age. In diseases affecting neurons such as the Alzheimer’s the healthy neurons of brain start deteriorating when toxic proteins accumulate in them. When this occurs, the neurons “switch off” one by one and the person starts having difficulty in remembering even simple details such as names of their family members, carrying out banal activities of day to day life and controlling their emotions which eventually progresses to end stage disease. Alzheimer’s diseases necessitates proper custodial care of the patients.
The Everything Guide to the MIND Diet: Optimize Brain Health and Prevent Disease with Nutrient-dense Foods
We are always at a lookout for healthy lifestyle changes which are relatively easy.
Sooner or later we get caught up in the current health trends, especially if they are promoted widely in grocery stores and markets.
One such trend that started few decades back and remains popular is eliminating or limiting fat including fat in dairy.
Although fat rich diets consumption has tremendously decreased, cases of heart diseases, diabetes, obesity are increasing.
Hence, not so surprisingly in 2015 USDA Dietary guidelines upper limit of fat intake has been eliminated.
1) Why dairy fat is important in our diet:
Summary of research conducted over past few years says adequate dairy fat consumption lowers liver fat, increases the body’s sensitivity to insulin. Increased insensitivity to insulin may lead to diabetes.
Fatty acids present in dairy regulate the hepatic de novo lipogenesis, a biochemical cycle in body that stores energy from carbohydrates in the form of fat.
Disruption of this cycle may lead to obesity, fatty liver diseases and metabolic syndrome. (Towards the end of the article I have listed the symptoms of Metabolic syndrome)
2) Whole milk v/s low fat or skimmed milk:
Milk fat has a matrix of 400 different fatty acids, of which saturated fatty acids comprises the major portion. There are different kinds of saturated fatty acids.
Low fat and fat free milk are the variants of regular milk where the milk is processed to reduce or completely remove the natural saturated fatty acids, trans-fats and cholesterol.
The long chain saturated fatty acids are presumed to raise the risk for heart diseases. But milk has a complex structure that has even the healthy short and medium chain saturated fatty acids.
3) Is saturated fat bad for you?
Decreasing the amount of calories gained from saturated fat not only decreases the levels of LDL, the bad cholesterol but also decreases levels of HDL, the good cholesterol.
Moreover, a study by UCLA reported that out of the patients admitted for heart attack 75% had low levels of the LDL and no diabetes.
But they had below normal levels of the good cholesterol i.e., HDL. Therefore we should pay attention to HDL enhancing diets such as dairy foods rather focusing only on what not to eat in order to reduce LDL.
The other best source of Saturated fat is Coconut Oil. Use it in moderate amounts for Salad dressing.
Furthermore, Milk and Coconut oil are the best sources of medium chain triglycerides (MCT). MCT oil produced by
fractionation of Coconut Oil is in the trend as healthy supplement for raising HDL levels.
But, Whole and Real foods over processed foods any day for practicing clean eating.
4) Why regular milk or whole milk and dairy foods based on whole milk are better option?
Owing to the credulity of the consumers, manufacturers often act complacent with their marketing strategies. They label the low fat and fat-free dairy products as “light and healthy”.
We usually focus on the saturated fat, trans- fatty acids and cholesterol content of the milk pack. But what we fail to notice on labels is the sodium and sugar content in low-fat and skimmed milk is higher than that present in whole milk.
Data collected over a period of 10 years showed that dairy products, oils, salad dressings and baked goods with tags of low calories and low fat had more sugar content, more sodium content compared to the regular versions . As a result, we can see the increasing cases of diabetes and metabolic syndrome even though consumers opt for low calories and low fat diet.
Studies even report that full fat/whole milk consumption has beneficial effects in protecting kids from severe childhood obesity.
From a study published in journal of nutrition, full-fat/whole fat dairy consumption most likely prevents the risk of developing metabolic syndrome compared to low fat dairy. However, it doesn’t hold true in case of consuming dairy based desserts.
5) Low fat dairy for individuals with metabolic syndrome:
In men with metabolic syndrome daily servings of low fat dairy was found to reduce the glucose levels compared to those who were on carbohydrates diet. Whereas, in case of women, daily servings of low fat dairy was found to reduce body weight, waist circumference and also body mass index.
What to eat and what not to eat:
Having normal levels of good cholesterol in body is as important as having low levels of bad cholesterol.
Whole milk, full fat fermented dairy products like yogurt and cheeses (cottage cheese, Gouda type cheeses) are sources of good cholesterol.
If you don’t have any metabolic diseases then it is healthier to use whole milk. You can dilute the whole milk with water if you are skeptical on using whole milk.
Choose cheese over butter and butter over margarine.
Fermented dairy products provide vitamin B complex. Lactose intolerant can take fermented dairy as the bacterial lactase digests the lactose present in milk.
If not lactose intolerant, then substituting your daily milk intake with soy milk, rice milk, almond milk and oats milk may not be a plausible healthy choice. Most of the brands have around 13-14gms of sugar for every 240ml of plant based drinks. Hence, every serving has 3-4 teaspoons of sugar.
Moreover, except for soy milk, plant based drinks have very low protein content compared to milk and could lead to nutritional deficiencies especially in children.
Milk is a natural source of monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids. They have innumerable health benefits due to their anti oxidant properties. So choice is yours whether to exclude or include milk in your diet.
Milk is a natural source of calcium and vitamin D and is recommended in pregnant women to prevent Preeclampsia
Metabolic syndrome: If an individual has any three of the following conditions then he has the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and/or cardiovascular diseases.
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar
- Low HDL
- Abdominal or central obesity
- High serum triglycerides.
Irregular periods, Irregular or lack of ovulation, Adult acne, thinning hairline, and excess facial hair- facing one or more of these problems rings a bell. The frequent campaigns on PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) awareness start making sense.
As the name suggests PCOS refers one or more number of cyst (liquid filled cavity) in ovaries which obstructs maturation of ovarian follicles to ovulate.
It could be either – hormonal imbalance trigger cyst formation or cysts inherently present in ovaries cause hormonal imbalance.
In either case if we regulate the hormones involved in PCOS then we can bring back the ovaries to normal functioning.
Before we try knowing the ways to regulate the hormones involved in PCOS, we need to understand the main hormones involved – Insulin and testosterone.
Most people assume it’s all about female hormones going kaput and so the hormonal imbalances. But, the main culprits are the freely roaming male hormones (androgens) produced by ovaries and adrenal glands.
Yes, even we women have androgens synthesized within our body. However, in normal cases, 80% of these male hormones are not available for tissues.
In simple words very little amount of testosterone is free to exhibit its action. But, in PCOS the amount of freely wandering testosterone increases.
That results in one or more of these problems- lack of ovulation, menstrual irregularities, excessive facial and body hair, cystic acne on jaw line and thinning of hair.
The Love of male hormones for sugar:
When you have carbohydrates your blood glucose level increases.
To make this glucose available to the body tissues insulin is released by the pancreas.
However, due to excess weight, high body mass index, low physical activity, and other inherent factors the body turns insensitive towards insulin.
When your body starts being less responsive to the insulin hormone, its release into the blood increases; consequently, testosterone tends to wander freely with rising insulin levels in blood.
Insulin resistance- The risk factor for PCOD:
Insulin resistance ⇔ Abdominal fat and larger waist circumference. This equation more or less sums up the relationship between physical factors and insulin resistance.
Undoubtedly, inherent factors play a role in predisposing insulin resistance and PCOS. However, making efforts to change the tangible factors such as weight and body mass index can bring a huge deal of difference in dealing with PCOS.
Know your type of PCOS:
Knowing the type of PCOS saves you from choosing the wrong treatments.
You can tackle the PCOS symptoms with simple measures provided you get acquainted with your type of PCOS.
Women with classic PCOS have irregular or no ovulation with higher testosterone levels. Obese women are most likely to have classic PCOS.
Women with Ovulatory PCOS have regular menstrual cycles. But they have higher testosterone levels and cysts in ovaries. Higher levels of testosterone in women causes cystic acne, hair thinning and excessive facial/body hair.
Two Simple ways that help in regulating the hormones involved in PCOS:
1) Exercise induced weight loss:
Change in lifestyle remains the first line of therapy in treating PCOS. A sedentary lifestyle worsens the symptoms and an active lifestyle improves them.
For women with Classic PCOS, losing weight lowers the level of bad cholesterol, triglycerides as well as reduces the chances of diabetes.
For women with Ovulatory PCOS losing even few pounds of weight can bring about a greater deal of improvement in symptoms.
In fact you may most likely start having regular periods. This improvement even reflects with healthy glowing skin and reduced skin and hair problems.
But, here’s the thing, the weight loss should be attained not just by dieting but by exercise and physical activity.
Your diet plan should focus on cutting down high glycemic index foods and increase the intake of healthy fats and proteins.
High Glycemic Index Foods – Potatoes, white rice, white bread.
Sugary foods – candy, cookies, cakes, and sweet drinks.
2) Having right amounts of omega-3 fatty acids containing foods:
First step regarding weight loss is often suggested but this second measure is less commonly known.
Of course, you must have read about health benefits of Omega fatty acids. Nonetheless, I would like to bring your attention to what research says about its role in PCOD.
Omega fatty acids are the polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA).
Man evolved on a diet that had a ratio of omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids (ω6: ω 3) of approximately 1. But in present times the ratio has reached to 25:1 with obvious consequences of higher metabolic diseases.
We eat lots more of omega 6 fats than required and have very little space for omega 3 in our diets.
Intake of omega-3 rich foods or supplements regulates menstrual cycles, reduces the free testosterone levels which correlates to increase in body’s sensitivity to insulin.
In a clinical trial, participants with PCOS were administered 2 capsules of omega 3 supplements for a period of 6 months.
At the end of six months, the long intervals between 2 menstrual cycles were greatly reduced.
Moreover, their lipid profile improved a great deal with increase in HDL, the good cholesterol and decrease in bad cholesterol and triglycerides.
The trials also reported that although omega-3 fatty acids did not reduce weight, there was a significant reduction in waist circumference.
Furthermore, there was another trial conducted on 78 overweight and obese women with PCOS.
Even in overweight and obese women with PCOD, omega-3 fatty acids were found to reduce the free testosterone levels and also regulate the irregular menstrual cycles.
Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids: Flaxseed oil, fish oil, chia seeds, walnuts, fish roe (eggs), fatty fish, seafood and spinach.
Walnuts among all nuts have high PUFA content that increases the protein that prevents availability of free testosterone. They also decrease LDL cholesterol thereby improving lipid profile. Best quality walnuts : Borges California Walnuts
Fitness routine with omega-3 rich diets are so-far the best and safe natural therapies for PCOS.
Please consult your doctor before opting over the counter omega-3 supplements.
Foods to avoid: Foods rich in omega-6 fatty acids such as peanut butters, other nut butters, margarine, vegetable oils such as safflower, soya bean and corn oil.
Most importantly, if you are of reproductive age and plan on embracing motherhood sooner or later, it is prudent to start making small changes that can help you manage stress. Stress activates a whole lot of hormones in our body so read on to know:
Here’s a little gift for you- A Skin Quiz🙆 Your skin concerns are toddlers screaming for your attention. Take a Quiz to listen to your skin
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Coconut Water is the most wholesome beverage provided by nature to the people of tropics. The more you explores nature’s Wellsprings the more you are in awe of its goodness. Not only water even the coconut meat is nature’s gift of nourishment.
Before we venture into nature’s fluid of life’s benefits let us first know how nature manufactures it:
Nuts of Coconut Palm trees have two edible parts one is the inner white kernel and other is a clear liquid endosperm (Coconut water). An Immature coconut between six to nine months contains about 750 ml of water that eventually becomes the flesh. During the fifth month the kernel begins to form a thin layer of jelly around the inside of the endosperm or shell. Little by little, the kernel grows and replaces the water by cells storing lipids (Coconut meat). At full maturity (12 months) the amount of coconut water harvested from each nut is about 300ml. The composition of Coconut water varies depending on the stage at which it is harvested.
Composition per 100ml
Fat ˂ 0.1%
Mineral Matter 0.4 %
Phosphorus ˂ 0.01%
It is even considered as Rehydration drink!! Amazing!
According to studies Coconut water can be used as re hydration drink in exercise induced dehydration. The basic ion composition of coconut replenishes the electrolytes lost through sweat.
Well, do you know not all coconuts have sweet water?
Choose tender coconuts as they have around 5.5% of sugars. The sugars found in tender coconuts are glucose and fructose as a result they taste sweeter compared to matured coconuts.
The best part: Nature has fortified coconut water with even vitamins!!
Coconut water contains both Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) and vitamins of B group. The concentration of Ascorbic acid ranges from 2.2 to 3.7 mg per 100ml, which gradually reduces as the kernel surrounding the water begins to harden. So next time you think of ordering any beverages how about you try this gift of nature.
Nicotinic acid 0.64 μg/ml
Pantothenic acid 0.52 μg/ml
Biotin 0.02 μg/ml
Riboflavin ˂0.01 μg/ml
Folic acid 0.003 μg/ml
Six main benefits of drinking the nature’s fluid of life:
Nature’s Gastroenterologist: If u suffer stomach upset then drink coconut water and see the difference. As it helps in preventing and relieving many health problems including dehydration, constipation, digestive disturbances, malnutrition, fatigue, heatstroke, boils, diarrhoea
Daily intake of Coconut water acts as preventive measure for kidney stones, osteoporosis, and urinary tract infections.
Natural anti aging: The important significant and useful components in coconut water are cytokinins. Researchers have suggested the possibility that consuming a rich source of cytokinins, such as coconut water, may produce an anti-aging effect on the body, reducing risk of developing degenerative and age related diseases
For healthy Skin: Splash your face with Coconut water regularly. Nicotinic acid (niacin) present in coconut water acts as natural toner and anti-aging. Topical application of niacinamide improves the surface structure , shows anti-inflammatory effects in acne, rosacea.
For preventing Skin rashes: Application on the body prevents prickly heat and summer boils and subsides the rashes.
For menopausal women: In a study conducted it was proved that coconut water reduced changes in the brain induced by hormonal imbalances in menopausal women
Natural Source of Calcium and Iron: Coconut water has calcium , iron and Vitamin B9 (Folic acid). Regular intake improves health and cures malnourishment.
Having daily coconut water at work can be the 5th way of beating office blues in addition to 4 ways to beat the office blues
Availability: People living in tropics should not miss out on the goodness of Coconut water. Water in coconuts is in sterile and pure form. So you should prefer drinking directly from the coconuts.
In regions where availability is an issue packed tender coconut water is being imported. Major exporters of the product are Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand.
Lavender Essential Oil: Distillate prepared from flowering tops of lavendula species. There are many species of Lavandula out there. Of which the most commonly used Lavandula angustifolia is the classic lavender that most people are familiar with. It can also be found on the market as Common Lavender, French Lavender (when it comes from France), True Lavender, or Lavender. Lavendula Latifolia is well known as Spike lavender.
In case you are looking for health benefits you should not purchase oils labeled as “Scanted” OR “Fragrance” OR “Perfume oil” as they are synthetically prepared products.
Wonderful Benefits of Lavender Oil:
- Sleep Better with Lavender Oil: Putting a small amount of lavender oil to insomniac’s pillow helps troubled sleeper fall asleep fast. As this oil is known for its calming effect on nervous system.
- Treat Anxiety and stress: It has been found to have anxiolytic effects comparable to lorazepam (anti-anxiety drug) in small clinical studies. Marketed drugs for anxiety are known for withdrawal symptoms , drug dependency and abuse. Whereas opting aroma therapy with lavender oil will benefit even in long run
By inhaling 2 to 4 drops of lavender essential oil in 2 to 3 cups of boiling water anxiety symptoms allievate. It is known to improve depression in some people. You can also mix 1 to 4 drops of lavender essential oil with almond or olive oil and then use it for massage or to apply to pulse points on your body. You will have the scent with you for hours if you do this.
- As antiseptic: Due to its antibacterial and antifungal properties it is used as antiseptic since ancient times. Linalool present in lavender oil has analgesic and anti inflammatory properties so it can be used for cuts, scrapes , bug bites and as first aid for minor burns due to hot water accidents.
- For skin and scalp infections: Of all essential oils lavender oil is highly potent against (Methicillin-resistant) Staphylococcus aureus forms of infections. Staph is one of the principal bacteria causing acne. Lavender oil is also effective against fungi causing ringworm infection and athlete’s foot
For dermatitis or eczema: Mix few drops of lavender oil in coconut oil and massage regularly.
For athlete’s foot:
a) Soaking your feet a couple times a week in hot water that has Tea Tree and Lavender Oil added really gets rid of the fungus fast. Just add about 10 drops of Lavender and 7 drops of Tea Tree Oil to a basin large enough for both feet. Soak for a minimum of 20 minutes. Add more hot water if needed
b) Make a natural preventative spray using 1 cup of distilled water along with 10 drops of Lavender. Put this in a spray bottle and spray on feet after leaving the shower or gym prior to putting on socks and shoes.
For Dry and itchy Scalp: Add few drops of lavender oil in your shampoo and conditioner and use it.
For Acne: It is useful for treating acne caused due to bacterial infection. Applying undiluted form as spot treatment may cause skin irritation and exacerbate your acne. So add few drops in your moisturizer and use it. Lavender oil is more effective for acne scars than acne.
- Boosting hair growth: Studies have shown lavender oil’s effectiveness in treating alopecia. Regular massage for several months after admixing it with coconut oil stimulates hair growth.
Review of Lavender Essential oil:
I have been using this oil for quite some time. My first purchase was from Soulflower brand. I used around 3 bottles each 15ml for more than an year. I purchased it to treat acne and dandruff. Here is my experience with it
For acne I initially tried spot treatment without dilution. I couldn’t tolerate the strong smell of it and felt nauseous. From then I started using after sufficient dilution. 5drops in 1ml-2ml of grapeseed oil. Though It didn’t work for my acne it worked well for my acne scars. This I believe was also because of grapeseed oil which I used as carrier oil.
For dandruff : As long as I used it regularly dandruff was under control but the moment I stopped using it flakes reappeared. But it is much better and advisable than the newly marketed D-free lotion. The latter had horrible smell that made me nauseous. Moreover didn’t work for me in treating dandruff. So lavender oil any day over any marketed dandruff lotions.
AS sunscreen: I am completely averse to the idea of using Chemical sunscreens which have one or more chemicals including oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate and octinoxate. Though they effectively protect from UV rays they are known to form cell damaging radicals on absorption of sun rays
So I prefer using 5 drops of lavender in coconut oil or olive oil. This mixture acts as natural sunscreen and you are good to go under sun!! Unless you have plans to spend on a beach I suggest you to opt for natural sunscreens for daily use.
My later purchases were from the brand Aroma magic:
Hands down!! Lavender oil from aroma magic is pure bliss. Not just me even my mom loves it. She says It is very effective and soothing to treat headaches and relieve stress compared to soul flower lavender oil.
Coming back home from your work after travelling for more than an hour amidst heavy noisy traffic you would surely love to have a relaxing bath followed by a cup of coffee or tea. So do add few drops of lavender essential Oil to your bath water and it acts as complete stress reliever and also as anti microbial.
You can purchase it from Amazon. Here are the links
For US based people please check this link :Lavender Essential Oil
Disclaimer: The information contained on this blog is general in nature and for informational purposes. It is not meant to substitute for the advice provided by your own physician or other medical professional.