Step Into Oils
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Step Into Oils

What could be better than tapping into centuries old elixirs and finding out they work better than what cosmetologists and pharmaceutical companies have been making the since the dawn of the industrial revolution?

The answer is being given the opportunity to share my epiphany and indulgence with others.

Ladies and gentlemen, as the title suggests, the potions I am referring are of course unadulterated, edible, organic, luscious and essential oils. I want to pour them over my body and absorb their nutrients and minerals more than once a day. The ones I use and I suggest using are absent the parabens, sulfites, synthetic fragrances, genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and triclosan that are found in most any beauty product. Once you find out for yourself the magic qualities that the many oils hold you will want to use them too.

My fascination began years ago when I began to be more interested in living a more natural existence. That meant living my life without toxic and processed ingredients being inhaled into my body via my nose, skin or digestive system. It also meant seeking a way to cleanse and moisturize my face and body without stripping them of their natural oils.

I had always known that my mother and Sophia Loren, a famous actress and beauty icon for those of you younger than twenty years old, used olive oil on their skin and in their baths. And both of them have beautiful skin that has stood the test of time.

I started out using olive oil on my body after a bath or shower a couple years ago. Eventually I moved to sunflower, then coconut. Then a couple months ago, after doing some research, I added grape seed, almond, jojoba, argan, then a blend of all or a few oils mentioned, plus some. I’ve also invested in such essential oils as grapefruit, lavender, marjoram and sandalwood. But now I use oils on more than an after bath regimen. I use them in my hair, as a facial cleanser and facial moisturizer. Of course my research has made my concoctions more sophisticated.

It may seem counterproductive to wash with oil especially when you are trying to rid your skin of dirt, grime and sweat - kind of like brushing your teeth with corn syrup, waxing your car with sand or scrubbing your hands with bacon grease.

But it is a scientific fact that oil dissolves oil. It is one of the basic principles of chemistry. “Like dissolves like.” “The best way to dissolve a non-polar solvent like sebum/oil, is by using another non-polar similar in composition: Other oils. By using the right oils, you can cleanse your pores of dirt and bacteria naturally, gently and effectively, while replacing the dirty oil with beneficial ones extracted from natural botanicals, vegetables and fruit that heal, protect and nourish your skin.” When washing your face with oil is done consistently and properly, skin can be rid of dryness, blackheads, oiliness, and leave skin healthy and balanced.

Your skin produces oil naturally for good reasons. It lubricates, heals, protects and helps your skin stay hydrated. Contrary to what the manufacturers of acne products market, oil DOES NOT promote or cause acne. Hormones, bacteria, and dirt are the culprits. So when teenagers use products that take away their own naturally produced oil, their pores compensate by producing MORE oil. That in turn ends up in even worse breakouts.

MY EXPERIMENT: I talked to several friends and family members to join me in a two week trial. They were to use only non- GMO, organic and essential oils in lieu of their normal cleansers and moisturizers. Included in my little study was a fifteen-year-old who was suffering from some light acne. I provided most of the oils.

Long story short, we ALL noticed a difference, even the teenager. Just after a week the pores in our faces had minimized, and fine lines had disappeared. The teen’s acne cleared up, COMPLETELY. She was so happy she almost cried. In addition, all the adults noticed on each other a different type of glow. My husband concurred.

After washing with oils, my skin is soft and dewy - not screaming out for moisturizer. Since I’ve been cleansing with oils, I have not spent a dime on department store face creams or lotions, or even the not so expensive moisturizers you can purchase in drug stores. Although now, I’m always in the market for a new and different oil.

Over the months and especially over the last two weeks, through research and testing out single oils and combinations on my own skin, I came up with some recipes I think are worth sharing. Some of them I gleamed from Do It Yourself (DIY) sites, but I always tweak the suggested combinations.

You can do this yourself at home and YOU WILL SEE A DIFFERENCE.

It’s important to remember that when cleansing with oils use small circular motions all over your face and neck. Massage for three to five minutes, listen to Zen music, light candles, drink wine and dance if you want. Always wipe excess off with a warm, cotton wash cloth. Make cleansing your face an experience, not a chore.

Please Try out and Enjoy the Oil Blends I Have Put Together.

TINA'S OIL RECIPES:

1. WHIPPED COCONUT OIL, TEA TREE OIL AND VITAMIN E FACIAL CLEANSER. First you have to make some whipped coconut oil. Coconut oil is naturally a soft solid unless exposed to temperatures higher than room temperature when it will become liquid. Put two cups of solid coconut oil and two tablespoons of vitamin E into your mixer or blender. You can add a couple drops of essential oils such as lavender or grapefruit oil to the coconut if desired. Whip it up and store in an airtight container. I have mine in a pretty glass container. For a nice face wash use one teaspoon whipped coconut oil with one-half teaspoon tea tree oil. This can also be used a moisturizer that’s why I don’t add the tea tree oil to the coconut oil mixture.

2. ORGANIC OLIVE AND ALMOND OIL FACIAL CLEANSER. One teaspoon olive oil, one teaspoon almond oil. Massage into skin as directed above.

3. BROWN SUGAR SCRUB. If you think you really need a mild buffing, I’ve been using this for years. I keep a small jar of brown sugar in my bathroom. Mix one tablespoon brown sugar, one teaspoon olive oil, one teaspoon lime or lemon juice, two drops sandalwood oil. Push your hair back of course and, using your finger tips, gently massage the sugar into your skin and neck. ALWAYS use circular motion. You can damage or irritate your skin if you use vertical or horizontal movements. Again, wipe off with a warm, cotton wash cloth

4. ARGAN, COCONUT, SUNFLOWER AND GRAPEFRUIT OILS MOISTURIZER. In a small bowl or container, perhaps a ramekin or a ceramic sushi dish, combine one-quarter teaspoon argan oil, one teaspoon whipped coconut oil, one teaspoon sunflower oil and three drops of grapefruit oil. Argan is one of the more expensive of any of the oils you will purchase. You can get a nice two ounce bottle for around $43. But you can spend as much as $180. Keep it simple. However, you won’t feel the price guilt pinch after purchasing this oil by realizing a little goes a LONG way. And after you read about it later in this article.

5. OLIVE, GRAPE SEED, ALMOND AND LAVENDAR CLEANSER. Combine a half teaspoon of the olive, grape seed and almond oils, and two drops of lavender into your palm or into a small container. Massage as usual and wipe off with a warm cotton wash cloth.

6. LUXURY ROSE PETAL, LAVENDAR BATH WITH EPSON SALTS AND OLIVE OIL. You can purchase fairly inexpensively rose petals from any local florist. They fall off the roses or are sometimes picked off by the florists if they look anything but perfect. Draw a bath and pour in two cups of Epson salts, aka magnesium sulfate, and a half cup of olive oil. Add twenty – or more, or less - drops of lavender into the running water. After the water is full, scatter the rose petals on top of the water. Light several candles and then “Step Into Oils.”

ARGAN OIL

This oil stands on its own. What I have here is a short narrative on what could easily be an essay. It often is referred to as “liquid gold,” because it is expensive and not easy to come by. It is available only from Argan trees, which grow only in Southwestern Morocco. The oil is extracted from the Argan nut by Berber women in Morocco who hand crack the nuts between two large stones. Berbers are an ethnic group indigenous to North Africa. This practice of producing Argan oil by the Moroccan women is a centuries old tradition. The raw nuts are removed from the hard shell by hand; ground between the stones, hand kneaded for hours and then cold pressed to produce the oil. It takes three days to make one liter of Argan oil.

For the most part the Berber women collect the Argan nuts by collecting them under the trees. Sometimes they will throw large stones at the tree to get them down. But it’s especially interesting to note that one of the oldest ways of harvesting Argan nuts is still being used.

The nuts are like cupcakes to Moroccan goats and and they will do anything for them including climbing trees. They usually get the ones that fall off the tree, but if there are none on the ground, they will scale the precious Argan tree to get their treat. After the goats eat the nuts, they digest only the fleshy part of the fruit leaving the nut behind. The argan nuts that the goats spit out are collected for the oil. It's more sanitary than you might think. The kernals, or nuts, are protected in a bullet proof shell. And they are washed before processing.

Argan Oil can be used straight for a number of purposes. Some include but are not limited to a face moisturizer, hydrating toner, leave-on conditioner, cuticle and foot softener and a body and bath oil.

In Order to Consider Myself a Professional Oils Promoter I decided to up my research and interview a skin expert. I called a local skin pro to ask her if there was a down side to using oils for skin care. Evelyn Mina is an esthetician and a registered nurse and has also had extensive training in skin care so she was skeptical at first when I asked her to convey to me the benefits of using unadulterated, pure oils on my skin on a daily basis. She had told me in the past during one of my rare facials that moisturizers with a lot of oil tend to clog pores making it harder to get skin clean. I begged to differ with her and I told her about my research.

I confessed to her that I’ve been using olive oil for years as a moisturizer and that for several months I’ve been also using it as a cleanser along with coconut, tea tree, grape seed, argan and almond oils – for use as cleansers and moisturizers. Evelyn was open minded and after we chatted for about an hour she concluded by encouraging me to continue my research on my skin and let her know the results.

If Cleopatra was Alive she Would be 2,078 Years Old.

The notorious Egyptian queen was known for her milk and honey baths AND her use of oils which she considered to be magical elixirs in aiding health issues, longevity and beauty. She is the most ancient spokesperson for essential oils. She was known to use olive, thyme, marjoram, rosemary, cedar, aloe and almond oils among others I’m sure to enhance her beauty. I also found out that black cumin seed oil was reported to have been found in the tombs of the Egyptian Pharoahs – hypothesized by archeologists to be used for skin care and medicinal purposes.

On a purely coincidental note, it’s interesting that in a recent issue of Cosmopolitan magazine there was an article about oils. I was at a local spa sitting in a comfortable chair waiting for my massage and there was the magazine available for reading. I’ve been a Cosmo snob for decades thinking the articles were ridiculous. And although I still believe that for the most part, the writers and editors of that publication come up with an occasional informative and interesting read. The author of the article, "The Magic of Oils," I perused is both a writer and an actress and says she is good friends with super model Paulina Porizkova. The writer, Isabel Gillies, mentions that after she told Porizkova about her new love of oils, she was told by the model that she has used them since she was a child. Gillies went on to describe how healthy and glowing Porizkova’s skin is.

All aside, I find the process of massaging these God given natural wonders into my skin. It’s therapeutic in a sense that you get a few minutes to ponder your day or evening and enjoy the smell of the oils people have been using for thousands of years. I use oils to cook, cleanse, moisturize, bathe, soothe, smell and use as an internal supplement. I feel as if I’ve discovered the fountain of relaxation and beauty. The fountain of youth will come when time stops.

At the moment I am writing this I have the following oils: Argan, Tamanu, Coconut, Olive, Grape Seed, Almond, Avocado, Tea Tree, Eucalyptus, and Lavender. Trust me I’m not done filling my shelves. My next acquisition will be Prickly Pear Seed oil which is fast absorbing and is a powerful antioxidant. It is known to improve skin elasticity and is used in a number of anti-aging creams and serums. I’m also in the market for pretty bottles and labels. I’m going to create my own display case in my bathroom. I’m giddy at the thought of blending different oils and seeing what works best for what. I’ll be keeping notes and write about what I’ve discovered. I’ll also be encouraging my readers to do the same.

The information I’m conveying here is more of a Do It Yourself manual for oils. There are a lot of blends out there that could empty your wallet. But if you have deep pockets you can go for Estee Lauder’s Radiant Vitality Essence Oil for $45, or MUN’s No. 1 Aknari, with prickly pear seed oil, for $95, or Microalgae Oil by Algenist for $79. You can spend a lot more for other brands as well. There are many and the lists are easily accessible on the Internet.

Please visit my website for more spa related articles.


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