All About Infused Oils

Today I wanted to do a little introduction of sorts that has to do with infusing oil and why many people do it.

I am in no way an expert in the art of infusing oils but I have done it upon numerous occasions in many different ways and have collected a few insights into how a beginner might experiment with it.

First of all if you are new to the term infused oils, it is simply a carrier oil of your choosing, such as olive oil, sweet almond oil, and so on, that has been infused or steeped with herbs and spices.

Infusing Methods | Two ways of infusing oil is solar infusing and stove top infusing.

Solar infusing is the age-old method of infusing oils and takes quite a bit more patients and time than the other method mentioned.

Once you have formulated your infusion, put it in an airtight jar and place it on a window seal where sunlight shines often to allow the suns gentle heat to slowly infuse your oil over the course of a few weeks or even months.

To infuse over a stove top place your jar of oils and herbs in a water bath on a stove top on a very low setting for several hours over the course of a few days.

Take care that you do not overheat or get water into your infusion while using this method.

Some prefer to use a crock pot over the stove top method which also works very well.

Why Infuse? | There are several reasons why someone might decide to make an oil infusion but I will only list a few of them.

Many decide to infuse a carrier oil with herbs and spices for their beneficial properties. Whether that be chamomile and lavender for relaxation, peppermint and eucalyptus for stimulation, or white willow bar for its healing properties.

Another reason that some will infuse oil is to extract a certain scent, this is more commonly used for spices such as star anise, cinnamon, clove. But can also work for herbs such as rose, lavender, and spearmint.

Those who make soap even occasionally infuse their oils to extract a certain color but this only works for certain herbs such as alkanet and green tea.

Using Infused Oil | Now that we have talked about the ways to infuse and why you may want to infuse its time to talk about the ways that you can use your infused oil.

Infusing is a wonderful way to get a fragrant and beneficial massage oil to help ease the tension of the day that you are storing in your muscles or to create a relaxing, winding down habit before bed with a calming infused oil.

If you enjoy experimenting with your natural skin care, infused oils just might be your next obsession.

Perhaps you want to make an infused oil for acne you might choose herbs such as calendula and rosemary. If you are looking for an infusion to help with those pesky scars perhaps try infusing some marshmallow root and lavender.

Infused oils are even good on your hair to promote healthy, growing hair. Herbs such as horsetail, rosemary, peppermint, and stinging nettle are a good option for an infused hair oil.

How To | To create your own personalized infusion simply pick out your choice of oil and your desired herbs and spices according to what you plan to use it for.

Put your dried herbs or spices into a sealable jar, like a mason jar, and pour your oil over the top making sure to have at least an inch of oil covering the top.

Once you have done that and have infused with whichever method you prefer, you can strain and bottle your infusion until further use.

 

Calming Herbs for Sensitive Skin

There are a lot of people out there who either have sensitive skin, myself included, or have sensitive skin conditions.

Many commercially made skincare products are not fully designed to cater to skin sensitivities since they are often loaded with synthetic ingredients and preservatives which are not always as skin friendly as they claim to be.

Making your own gentle skincare for your skin’s specific needs is much more productive and much less expensive in the long run and its completely customizable.

Calendula | Calendula is a bright, yellowish orange colored flower that is widely used in skincare for those with sensitive skin.

It is anti-inflammatory which makes it a great option for those who suffer from allergic reactions on their skin or even for sunburns and bruising.

Calendula helps to produce collagen which makes it useful for any cuts or acne since it reduces scarring and softens dry or thin skin.

 

Lavender | Lavender is also a herb that is widely known for its skincare abilities and is usually a crowd pleaser amongst everyone.

With anti-septic and anti-inflammatory properties lavender is soothing to wounds and helps the process of skin healing. It is anti-aging with its ability to stimulate skin and tone pigmentation.

It plays well with all skin types, specifically oily skin and helps to treat skin conditions such as dermatitis, acne, eczema, and psoriasis.

It also helps to calm irritated, red skin or breakouts.

If you’d like to learn more about what lavender can do for you and your skin, you’ll want to check out my last post specifically about

 

Chamomile | This herb isn’t only good as a nighttime tea it also has several benefits for skin, specifically irritable skin.

Like lavender, chamomile is an amazing option for those with skin conditions such as dermatitis, acne, eczema, and psoriasis since it is calming.

Chamomile helps to gently ease pain and irritation in acne sufferers, boils, skin wounds, and rashes or allergic reactions including sunburns.

It is a great option for all skin types and is the most widely used herb in skincare when it comes to sensitive and easily irritated skin types.

 

Green Tea | Though green tea might not be specifically thought of as a herb I decided to include it anyway since it also has many positive qualities for those with sensitive skin.

Like the other herbs on this list, green tea is anti-inflammatory and is soothing to skin conditions such as acne and rosacea and psoriasis.

Green tea fights against free radicals and sun damage on skin and is anti-aging because of the natural antioxidants that it contains. It promotes skin cell reactivation which helps to reduce the signs of aging such as wrinkles, age spots, and skin sagging.

It is also a natural astringent which makes it a great toner as well as an option for those with oily skin.

As with all natural skincare it is important to always do a spot test with the herbal products that you are trying out to ensure that you will not have an allergic reaction to any of them.

 

Skin Care Basics | Lavender

Lavender is one of those scents that is always a crowd pleaser with its musky, floral notes and the ability to spread calm to whomever manages to get a whiff of it.

There are quite a few more wonderful benefits to lavender than just its pleasant scent, however, and today I thought I’d talk more about those benefits.

Anti-Aging | Lavender has a treasure trove of benefits for your skin and one of the best is its ability to be a natural anti-aging remedy.

It is naturally healing, toning, anti-inflammatory, and stimulating, all of which help to battle against aging skin.

Lavender stimulates new cellular growth and is incredibly diverse since it plays well with all skin types, even skin problems such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis.

 

Healing | I have already briefly mentioned lavender’s healing abilities but it can go much deeper than just healing acne or pesky break outs.

Lavender is amazing at soothing sunburns, swelling, and even bug bites. It can be used as a rub for sore and stiff muscles and joints and as a headache remedy when applied to the temples.

Lavender oil is one of the few essential oils that is considered safe to use undiluted and can be applied straight to minor cuts and scrapes and bruises, even new or infected piercings.

 

Relaxing | The fact that the scent of lavender is relaxing to most is not a new discovery by any means but perhaps you haven’t been using it in the ways that you could be.

Lavender promotes restful sleep so you can make it into a relaxing habit of applying a few drops of lavender oil to your temples or the bottoms of your feet.

If you partake in yoga, Pilates, or meditation remember to bring the scent of lavender with you to further the benefits of what you are doing.

Add a few drops of lavender oil to your nighttime moisturizer or lotion to promote a calming and enjoyable mood before you go to bed. You can even go so far as to make a lavender spray to mist your room and sheets with.

Make sure you go and check out my last post where I talk all about what I got up to during the month of September.

My Favorite Flower Toner

I have been making my own toners for quite some time now and have tried out many different variations but always seem to drift back to one specific recipe.

If you are not familiar with what exactly a toner is but want to try it out it is probably one of the most user-friendly bits of skin care to make on your own.

A toner is simply an astringent liquid that is applied to the skin to improve complexion and to battle oilyness.

Two astringent liquids that I use for my toners are apple cider vinegar and witch hazel, both being very easily accessible, but today’s recipe only calls for witch hazel.

Recipe |

– 1 cup of Witch Hazel

– 1/2 Tsp. Lavender Buds

– 1 Tsp. Calendula Flowers

– 1 Tsp. Chamomile Flowers

Pour your witch hazel into a sealable container and add in your flowers to begin the infusion process.

You can either put the flowers directly into the container or you can put them into a tea bag or fabric satchel to avoid having to stain the flowers out later.

Let the witch hazel infuse for three to five days, shaking the container occasionally and within a day or two your infusion should be the color of chamomile tea.

Once you are happy with it strain out the flowers or remove the bag they are in and pour into a spray or dropper bottle for easy use.

This toner is my favorite specifically for its simple and easy to find ingredients that are soothing and anti-inflammatory to any skin type.