28
Feb

45+ Every Day Uses for Essential Oils

by Tiffany in Essential Oils

I recently asked the followers on my Natural Family Living Facebook page for some insight into what essential oils they use and what they use them for? I wanted to see what some common uses were and if any creative and new-to-me ideas popped up. I was so impressed with the range of answers that I have decided to share the info here. There are so many every day, practical uses for essentials oils it blows my mind! The power of plants indeed!

My question was “What’s the last essential oil you used? What did you use it for?”

Some of the answers…

Peppermint for headache

Lavender for homemade baby wipes

Rosemary for homemade dish soap

Lavender for a stuffed nose / head cold

Melaleuca in the nostrils to prevent a cold

Sweet orange mixed in baking soda to freshen carpets

Lavender to help mom and child sleep

Tea tree for cleaning

Lavender for a cooking burn

Lavender for seasonal allergies

Clove oil for a toothache

Roman chamomile for relaxation

Tea tree oil for acne

Eucalyptus for cleaning

Peppermint for homemade toothpaste

Lemon to fill a diffuser

Oregano oil to combat a cold

Geranium in the steam room at the gym

Peppermint for lotion and scenting sheets

Eucalyptus for clearing sinuses

Lavender for teething

Eucalyptus in the bath for aches and pains

Rosemary and tea tree for an all purpose spray cleaner

Rosemary and black pepper for muscle aches

Clove oil with vinegar mopping the floor

Thieves for a cold sore and to freshen breathe

Rose hip seed in moisturizer for an anti- aging omega boost

Peppermint in my homemade all purpose cleaner

Patchouli for the wash

Thieves oil on the feet before bed to combat a fever

Lavender to relax in the tub

Lemon for cleaning

Thieves and eucalyptus for a chest cold

Lavender for homemade body butter

Eucalyptus and coconut oil on feet at night to helping with coughing

Teat tree in the cloth diaper bin

Wild orange in the diffuser for calming

Orange to keep the cat off the bed

Peppermint and tea tree to soak cloth diapers in after a rinse, but before the wash

Peppermint for nausea

Lavender in the dryer, instead of using dryer sheets

Thieves for disinfecting after illness

Tea tree for athletes foot

Orange oil to make hand soap

Peppermint and eucalyptus in a rock fountain to freshen air

Orange for homemade cleaning supplies

Tamanu for skin rash/eczema

Tea tree oil to prevent bed bugs

What oils have you used lately???

Learn more about essential oils!

45 Uses Essential Oils-nm

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

4 Comments

19
Sep

An Oldie but Goodie – Drying Racks

by Tiffany in A Green Home

All summer long (and now well into the Fall) I have been using the power of wind and solar to dry a large portion of my clothes and bath towels thanks to a classic drying rack. I love the fact that I have saved pennies by not using my energy hog clothes dryer but I also just get such joy out of seeing clothes and towels blowing in the wind outside. Maybe my view of clothes on the line is a bit romantic but I always loved my summers at Grandmas’s farm, helping my mom putting clothing and bed sheets on the line to dry. It’s right up there with shucking fresh corn and tossing the husks over the fence so the horses could eat them. It just seems to epitomize the homestead lifestyle and return a little of that charm to our modern world.

I rent currently and don’t have much room to put a permanent clothes line so for two years it was all the dryer all the time and I felt bad about that. Then I saw a rave review about Homestead Drying Racks and after contacting them I received one for review. I ADORE it. It makes laundry go so much faster, taking probably two loads a day out of my dryer and using wind/solar power to dry them.  I also find that it does not adversely effect my stinky bath towels action plan. The towels don’t actually need to be sterilized in a hot dryer…the sun (and the tea tree oil I use in the wash) works just as well. Clothes and towels are a bit on the crunchy side but I don’t mind that at all.

I cannot comment on the ease of putting it together, or not, because hubby did that but I think it only took him about 30 minutes. Our younger kiddos were over the moon thinking it was some sort of climbing toy for them. Ha! It is sturdy but not THAT sturdy. I like that I can fold it flatish and lay it against a wall so that it is out of the way when need be and I like that it is pretty light because I transfer it from kitchen to back porch when I want to use it. In the winter we may use it in the basement for drying clothing but more than likely it will stay in the kitchen and be used for hanging winter clothes and wool that have gotten wet from snow play. They can drip dry on the rack, conveniently positioned next to the heat register, and dry in a non-carpeted area. Perhaps they will actually be dry when the kids go out again only an hour or two later and I won’t have to listen to gripes about how awful it is to squeeze into wet snowsuits.

We have a pretty tiny porch so this rack is perfect for our needs. I think I have it down to a science as far as number of clothes/towels I can fit on it. This is the “Pioneer” rack from Homestead Drying Racks. They also have a “Homesteader” size which is much bigger but I was afraid it would not fit on our porch.

The “Peddler” size is perfect for indoor drying in small spaces like apartments or RVs and they even have an old fashioned hand ringer for ringing out wet clothing. From what I have experienced their racks are very high quality and it has been so useful and will no doubt continue to be throughout the year.

It is also perfect for my Vibram Fiver Fingers and Fila Skeletoes barefoot shoes. They need to be washed fairly often (CrossFit yo!) and cannot be dried lest they fall apart so I just wash them with the towels and then dry them on the rack, easy peasy.

If you are in the market for a drying rack or have ever thought about giving one a try please check out Homestead Drying Racks.

Also another fun tidbit…they have a free homestead magazine you can download as well. It is very well put together and very informative. Love it!

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

4 Comments

31
Aug

7 Practical Uses for Essential Oils

by Tiffany in Essential Oils

Scented Baths – Essential oils can be added to baths for pure relaxation purposes or to help with some sort of ailment like muscle soreness (pine, lavender) or congestion (peppermint, tea tree).

Mood Perfume – Scents have long been known to have great effects on mood. If you have an old roll on deodorant bottle try adding some jojoba or sweet almond oil to it along with your favorite essential oil. Roll on when you need a boost plus you get bonus points for in home recycling.

  • Romantic – rosewood, bergamot, patchouli
  • Uplifting – geranium, holy basil, melissa
  • Stimulating- coriander, neroli, geranium, ginger
  • Calming – frankincense,  clary sage, angelica

Soothing Skin – After a sunburn it can really help with pain and healing to take a long, cold shower and then moisturize with coconut oil and 1% Roman chammomile, jasmine, lavender, neroli, or rosewood. Acne can be soothed with a cotton ball and tea tree oil. Skin all over your body can be moisturized with an essential oils/coconut oil mix.

Cleaning Products – Essential oils have potent antimicrobial properties along with their clean, natural aromas. They deodorize, purify, and sanitize…safely. Try using lemon, tea tree, peppermint, eucalyptus, and rosemary by adding to baking soda, vinegar, or castile soap.

To make the scented scrub (top) just add a few drops essential oil to baking soda and then sprinkle over the surface of the area you want to clean. This can also be sprinkled over top of carpet and then vacuumed up to deodorize your home.

To make the lemon spray just add 5-6 drops lemon oil to white vinegar and clean your kitchens and bathrooms. They get squeaky clean and they smell like lemons!

Foot Scrubs – Got rough feet? Make a foot scrub with cornmeal or ground oats, Epsom salts, and either peppermint or ylang ylang oils. Scrub and enjoy smooth tootsies.

Compresses – Using hot or cold compresses is basic first aid. The addition of essential oils can be beneficial for fevers, sprains, bruises, and bug bites.

Steam Inhalation – Use a bowl of steaming hot water and a towel or take a hot shower. Either way, adding essential oils can help with all sorts of ailments via inhalation…colds, sore throats, skin conditions, and coughing.

The essential oils above from DoTERRA (a gift) though I prefer Young Living.

Read also: 12 Amazing Uses for Tea Tree Oil

learn more about essential oils

Friday, August 31st, 2012

3 Comments

24
Jul

12 Amazing Uses for Tea Tree Oil

by Tiffany in Essential Oils

Tea tree oil has many practical, therapeutic, and medicinal benefits that make it a must have in any green/natural household. Since you can get high quality tea tree oil for an affordable price it is bought and used consistently in our home for all sorts of things. Here are just some of the things you may find it useful for:

  1. Household cleaning – Tea tree oil is antibacterial so use it to clean kitchen and bathroom surfaces where bacteria can linger. Your house will be clean and it will smell great too.
  2. Removing mildew from clothing and bath towels – In humid areas clothing and bath towels left to lay around damp will often take on a the rank smell of mildew and it can linger even after regular washings in hot water. Tea tree oil is a great additive to kill the mildew and get rid of the smell.
  3. Get rid of lice – These little critters cannot stand tea tree oil so if your kiddos get it, use tea tree oil in their shampoo and/or in a oil/water spray bottle for daily spray treatments. It is also detested by leeches and ticks I hear.
  4. Mouth wash – 2-3 drops of the oil in a cup of warm water can be a very effective mouth rinse/wash if you have issues with plaque, oral thrush, canker sores, or gum disease.
  5. Congestion – Using this essential oil in a diffuser, a pot of boiling water, or in a hot shower can really help open your sinuses.
  6. Acne – Often times folks with acne have a habit of touching their faces or picking at pimples. All of this causes bacteria to hang out on your face and exacerbate the problem. Spot treat acne with tea oil on a cotton ball or washcloth to clean and help reduce inflammation. You can also mix with some coconut oil for larger areas, like the back/neck.
  7. Athletes foot and toenail fungus – Tea tree oil gets rid of fungus and fungal infections so why not try this instead of a harsh over the counter product?
  8. Soothe cuts, wounds, and burns – It is helpful in treating knee scrapes, cooking burns, bee stings, and other bumps and boo-boos.
  9. Diaper rash – Mix a few drops with a carrier oil to soothe and heal.
  10. Ear aches – Many moms have had great success treating these aches at home. Dilute in warm olive, almond, or coconut oil and use a few drops in the ear. Hold head to the side for one minute and then let the ear drain, using a cotton ball or washcloth to collect excess oil.
  11. Eczema and Psoriasis – Put a few drops in a warm bath and have a good soak. This soothes and disinfects problem skin.
  12. Sunburns – A few drops tea tree diluted inside coconut oil makes a great sunburn lotion that will help with any soreness that may prevent you from sleeping and moving about well and will reduce blistering or peeling.

So tell me? What do YOU use tea tree oil for in your home?

Related: Learn More About EOs and Find Out Where to Get Them!

12 Uses for Tea Tree Oil

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

21 Comments

1
Jun

10 Best Essential Oils To Use For Kids

No matter how hard you work to keep your children healthy, they’re going to experience sickness from time to time.

It’s no fun and it can be discouraging when it happens, but it’s going to happen. How you react and what you do during that time can make all the difference.

As mom, you’re in charge of your children’s health. That means feeding them healthy foods, limiting their exposure to toxins, and yes, what you do to help them get better when they are sick.

You don’t have to be a doctor. You don’t have to be a nurse. All you need to be is willing to learn and do it.

Today I want to share 10 of the best essential oils that you can use for your little one’s to help them feel better or get better when they are sick or have some sort of illness even if it’s a scrap or a burn. I’m also going to share how to use essential oils as well as a few recipes that you can use when you need them!

Essential Oils Safe For Children

1. Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is an anti-fungal and anti-bacterial essential oil. You can use it for cuts, scraps, burns, bug bites, and as a bug repellent.

2. Lavender Oil

Lavender oil has anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties. Use it to sooth and calm as well as for first aid, sunburn, and to boost immunity.

3. Chamomile Oil

Chamomile oil is a digestive aid and is good for babies with colic or constipation. It, like lavender, is known for its calming properties. It’s also an anti-inflammatory and is good for ear infections. This one can cost a pretty penny though so use it wisely!

4. Peppermint Oil

Peppermint oil is also a digestive aid and can be used to help with colic. It’s know to help cool fevers and act as a decongestant with colds. (Make sure to dilute this oil well… it’s strong!)

5. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil is most well-known for it’s use as a decongestant for respiratory disorders. It also works to cool fevers and has anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties.

6. Rose Otto Oil

Rose Otto oil is known for it’s ability to treat hay fever and asthma. So if your little one suffers from seasonal allergies, this is a great oil to have on hand, but it, like chamomile oil, is costly. Have you ever though about how many roses it takes to make an ounce of oil? A lot!

7. Citrus Oils (orange, grapefruit, mandarin, tangerine)

Citrus oils are mood-enhancing oils, and they smell wonderful! An interesting tid-bit is that they’re know to calm overstimulated children so really they’re a mood-balancing oil!

8. Frankincense

Frankincense… yes, the same thing that the wise men brought as a gift to Jesus… is good for infections because of its anti-bacterial properties and is often used with respiratory congestion.

9. Sandalwood

Sandalwood essential oil is a great oil for sore throats and use as a sedative.

10. St. John’s Wort

St. John’s Wort {the entire herb} is primarily known for it’s mood-enhancing and hormone properties, but when it comes to St. John’s Wort essential oil, it can be used to treat ear infections which can be very common in children.

How To Use Essential Oils

Essential oils are fairly simple to use. First of all let me say that essential oils are concentrated and should NEVER be used undiluted on your skin, especially not your children’s skin.

So really all you need are two things.

  1. an essential oil of your choice
  2. a carrier oil of your choice

A carrier oil is basically what you will dilute your essential oil in. You can use any oil that is suitable for your skin and absorbs well.

Some common carrier oils are jajoba oil, sweet almond oil, sunflower oil, and even olive oil {although it can be a little greasy}.

Most combinations are 1% – 5% concentrations depending upon what you’re using it for. For household purposes, a 5% would be suitable. For illness a 2.5% would suffice, and for small children or combinations used on the face or sensitive skin, 1% would be best.

To achieve the correct combination, use the following chart.

5 Simple Children’s Remedies Using Essential Oils

1. Congestion Steam

10 drops of Euchalyptus essential oil in one quart of hot water. Hold face over bowl {close enough for comfort} with towel draped over bowl and head. Inhale steam deeply for 5 – 10 minutes. Be careful of hot water and burns!

2. Nighttime Massage Oil

12 drops of Lavender essential oil in one ounce of sweet almond oil. Massage into skin before bed to promote a restful night’s sleep.

3. Cuts & Scraps Healing Salve

7 drops Tea Tree essential oil and 6 drops of Lavender essential oil mixed with one ounce of melted coconut oil. Allow to harden and apply as needed.

4. Earache Oil

6 drops of Sandalwood essential oil and 6 drops of Chamomile oil to one ounce of jajoba oil. Place 2-3 drops in painful ear 2-3 times a day as needed.

5. Energy Bath

Place 6 drops of Citrus essential oil in baby bath tub or 30 drops for full-sized tub. Mix well and bath as normal.

So that’s it! Which of these essential oils are you going to try first? Share with me in the comments below!

Meagan Visser is the owner of Growing Up Herbal, a home-based business that specializes in herbal skin care and medicinal products for the whole family. She’s passionate about teaching others how to take charge of their health and how to use herbs to prevent and heal themselves from sickness. She lives in the Appalachian Mountains of East Tennessee with her wonderful husband and three amazing boys.

learn more about essential oils

Friday, June 1st, 2012

57 Comments