Discovering the Extraction Process for Essential Oils

Let’s Explore how Essential Oils are made during Extraction. IMG_4359

According to The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) in their Vocabulary of Natural Materials (ISO/D1S9235.2) defines an essential oil as a product made by distillation with either water or steam or by mechanical processing of citrus rinds or by dry distillation of natural materials. Following the distillation, the essential oil is physically separated from the water phase.  Once the essential oil has been separated it is usually tested and then bottled for distribution.

CO2 and absolutes are often times refered to as essential oils as well, especially with aromatherapist and professions that sale essential oils. However, according to the statement above you can see that only distilled or expressed substances are technically essential oils. Which is why I will be explaining only the process of distillation and expression in this article today.

So what does all this mean?  Let me break it down even further. Have you ever taken some leaves or stems off of an herb plant such as peppermint, rosemary, or marjoram and rubbed them between your hands?  This creates an aromatic smell between your palms.  If you take your hands in front of your face and take in a deep inhale you will take in the invigorating smells of the plants oils. However making an essential oil isn’t that simple. It takes a lot more then simply rubbing your hands together to actually create the therapeutic properties of an essential oil.

If you look up essential oils in almost any text book it will state that essential oils are defined as “highly volatile and highly concentrated aromatic extracts that are either distilled or expressed from a wide variety of plant material”. Some of these plant materials include, leaves, bark, twigs, roots, seeds, grasses,  fruits, rinds, flowers and stems. For example, it takes 10,000 pounds of rose petals to distill 1 pound of essential oil. That’s a whole lot of roses! Which is one reason why some oils are more expensive then others. When you think about how many roses go into just a 1/8 oz of rose essential oil you begin to understand why it can cost $170 for a single bottle!

As discussed above Essential oils can be extracted in several ways, now let’s explore what exactly that means:

Distilled

Most plant aromatics can be captured through a distillation process. You will find that most essential oils are produced this way, especially flowers, leaves, barks, and roots. Some Examples: LavenderCedarwoodclove budnutmeg . During distillation the material is placed upon grids inside the distiller. and depending on the method of distillation  the plant material is slowly broken down to remove it’s highly concentrated constituents. The concentrated matter then draw into a connecting pipe that lead them into a condenser. A cooling period then begins. The water and the essential oil will later  be siphoned off and separated. The water that was separated from the essential oil will have small traces of essential oil in it and this get’s bottled and becomes hydrosol. The essential oil is then tested and bottled.

There are three types of distillation  processes that are used for producing essential oils.

Steam Distillation:

The process of steam distillation can be traced as far back as 5,000 years ago. Most records indicate that the primary use at that time was perfumery and tonics. This is also the most common form of distillation of essential oils and has the highest temperature and pressure then the other two types of distillation. Steam is directed inside the seal and is highly pressurized.

Water Distillation:

Plant materials come in direct contact with the water. This process is most popular with  plants such as flower buds like orange blossoms (neroli).

Water and Steam Distillation:

Mostly used with herbs and leaf. Water stays below the grate while steam is pumped from outside the seal.

Expression/ Cold Pressed

Cold press is another form of extraction and is used with most citrus. When it comes to citrus oils it is in my opinion the preferred way.  When citrus is exposed to high temperatures such as a distillation process it tends to deteriorate quicker making it a lower quality oil.  lemonorange, lime peel or grapefruit, tangerine, Bergamot are all essential oils that are best extracted using cold press method.  This process involves taking the fruit and picking or prodding through the rind and eventually pressing the essential oil out through the use of machinery. The fruit is then spun creating a separation between the oils and the juice of the fruit.

Still eager to learn more? Check out my latest YouTube Video explaining what a carrier oil is and why it’s important to use them.

Halloween Survival Kit

One more day until Halloween and out comes all the ghosts and goblins.  This can be an action packed day for many families. The thrill children get (and some adults, like me) when dressing up and becoming that alter ego for one evening out of the year. Sharing the evening with your best friends and family members. Running around the neighborhood collecting as much candy as the kids can carry, sometimes avoiding the really spooky homes until they get a wee bit older to handle them. Then at the end of the evening spilling out bags of sugary goodness and then goes the candy feast. Soon after the sugar high they will meet the sugar low and children will be drug off to bed where alas you can begin to pull a few of your own favorites out.

Great night you think to yourself as you sit down for the first time all day. Feet are aching, body is tired and suddenly you hear a little voice from the far corner of the room… mom… dad,  it’s likely one of two things.

“I don’t feel so good”, or “I’m scared”

Yes that perfect day can often turn into aching stomachs and upset minds in the hours that follow your Halloween night. But have no fear, this year you will be ready. You will be SUPER PARENT with the super powers that  strike  away fear and wipe out aching bellies.

Here is your “Halloween Survival Kit” complete with super powers!

The “Monster Smash Spray”

What you will need:
  • One spray bottle any size  DIY Monster Smash spray
  • Enough water to fill the spray bottle.
  • If you have essential oils in your home add a small amount 5-10 drops depending on the size of your spray bottle (1 oz 5 drops, larger then a 1 oz could have up to 10 drops).
  • If you do not have any essential oils then get creative and add peppermint leaves, rosemary, lemon balm, rose petals, or  zest from an orange, lemon, or lime add to water and let it infuse in the  for 3 hours to 24 hours, You can even use a tea bag to infuse your monster smash spray.
Directions:

If you are adding essential oils to your monster smash spray decide which ones and add them directly into the spray bottle and then add water to the spray bottle.

If you are using dried flowers, zest from an orange, lemon, or lime or herbs then let them infuse in water for 3-24 hours. Strain and pour the infused water into the spray bottle.

For added super powers have your child help you make the spray. Let them decide what essential oils to add or what herbs to use.

Have the spray nearby so if your little one does wake up scared you can use it to spray  under the bed, in the closets, or anywhere they are afraid and smash out those monsters!

* Do not spray directly on the skin or around the eyes. Keep away from pets and babies.

 

Say no  to belly aches,

there are lot’s of natural remedies you can use to combat belly aches here are a few of my favorites:

  • If your child will drink tea give them some peppermint tea, ginger tea, or licorice root tea before bed. This will help calm the digestive enzymes for a more peaceful night sleep.
  • Eat an orange, oranges help ease an onset of stomach aches and aid in digestion. They are a natural carminative helping to ease bloating and gas.
  • Lemon water, squeeze half a lemon into a glass of water to help calm down  any acidity in the stomach. Works well with nausea. 

Belly Soother Massage Blend:

What you will need:
  • 1 oz amber bottle
  • 1 oz carrier oil such as almond oil, olive oil, safflower, sunflower, avocado oil, or jajoba oil
  • Essential oils of, peppermint, sweet orange, ginger.
Directions:

Place the following essential oil drops into the 1 oz amber bottle, 2 drops of peppermint, 1 drop of ginger, 7 drops of sweet orange. Place the cap on and roll the bottle between your hands for one minute. Let it sit for another 4 minutes and then roll bottle between your hands for one more minute. Add in your choice of carrier oil. When needed apply a nickel to quarter size of the blend to the abdomen or on the bottoms of the feet.

* Note this recipe is for the dilution rate of children ages 5-13. Do not use on children younger then 5. Never ingest essential oils as it can be harmful to take internally. Keep out of reach of pet’s and children.

Now that you have your ultimate super power tool kit. Get out there, be safe and have some FUN!

Nothing says Self-Care like Lavender

 

Using Lavender in it’s many forms is creating Self-Care. This month I am focussing on self-care thanks to Carrie Hensley’s #30sacredsangha Un-Challenge. It has me realizing that I don’t always give myself permission to allow or receive. That’s been a battle for me most of my life, although I am clearing out the years worth of cobwebs, I still find on occasion that there is work to be done. That’s why I wanted to share this month’s aroma with you and it fit’s in perfectly with self-care!

This month we are focussing on Lavender. There are many different varieties of lavender, some are meant for culinary use, others are for ornamental and then there is the lavender used in essential oils called Lavendula Angustifolia. This variety is steam distilled using the flowers and stems to produce magnificent essential oils that can help to calm the central nervous system, create harmony, comfort and clarity. This variety of essential oil is also safe for the skin.  As a side note, be careful of Spike Lavender as it can be a skin irritant and is meant for cleaning products, not to be used on the skin or as an air freshener.

The very essence of lavender is love and care. It draws into the aspects of nurturing ones spirit from an emotional, physical, and spiritual space.  Lavender is amazing at holding you up when the weight of the world is falling down around you. Lifting the worries from your shoulders and gently brining you back to calm and peace. Lavender seeks to bring out the best in everyone, reminding us that we all have a destiny to do good in the world.

Lavender and the chakras:

Lavender is the one and only essential oil that I am aware of that works to harmonize every one of our 7 major chakra’s. Seriously, if you are looking for one oil to do it all when it relates to these 7 major energy centers this is the one to use.

Emotional and Energetic benefits of Lavender:

Acceptance, calm, compassion, clarity, comfort, gentleness, love, self-care

Healing properties of Lavender:

Antiseptic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, sedative

Ways to incorporate the healing of Lavender in your life.

  1. Is it tea time?  Lavender tea has some of the best medicinal  effects on the body. It is known to help relieve headaches, migraines, anxiety, depression, insomnia and indigestion to name a few. So the next time you can’t sleep or are having trouble after a heavy meal give lavender tea a try.
  2. If you have a lavender plant at home take some of the flowers and place them in your next bath.  The water will help disperse the nutrients from the flowers giving you the benefit.
  3. Rub Lavender Lavendula angustifolia on your temples to ease a headache or ease tension from your day. Also works well on the feet, what a treat to give yourself a foot rub before bed.
  4. Make a dream pillow, stuff dried lavender flowers into a sachet and place under your pillow before bed.
  5. Plant your own lavender to enjoy all year long.

* Essential Oil Precaution* Do not use while pregnant. Do not use with children under 8 years. Do not ingest essential oils and always dilute with a carrier oil when placing on the skin. Keep away from children and pets.

Essential Oil Geek

Here I am geeking out again on Essential oils! I recently purchased a new oil that I had never smelled before. Excited by the intense earthiness that the website described it as on Mountain Rose Herbs, I knew I needed to get this EO. In fact the evening I had seen it listed on their website I decided to think it over for a bit because it was a fairly expensive oil and I have a tendency to take pause with most large purchases. But the next morning when I woke up, it was the first thing I had thought of. Later I met a friend for breakfast and I expressed to her how much this oil is finding it’s way inside me… I literally could not stop thinking about it. Then even later in the day I saw yet another friend and the subject came up again. That was it my confirmation… the big billboard sign saying “THIS IS YOUR OIL” It just wouldn’t go away. I have been eagerly waiting it’s arrival since the moment I saw the Oakwood on line. That moment has come… and here is my reaction… can you say love at first sight? Or would it be smell?

EO Geek from Lisa Hecke on Vimeo.

Sweet Orange Essential Oil is like smelling sunshine!

Summer is HERE. Let the SUNSHINE IN!

The Essential Oil of Sweet Orange is like smelling sunshine. Summer is all about play, happiness, and FUN! The season encourages joy and lightheartedness which is  why our angels are asking us to smell the sunshine this month and there is no better scent to do that with then with the sweetness of orange!

Orange contains the joy and magnificent light of the heavens. Bursting with vitality and bright color it truly takes on the energy of sunlight. Infact if the sun had a smell or a taste I believe it would be the sweet tantalizing refreshment of a  fresh squeezed orange.

Orange has long been known to bring happiness to the depressed states of emotion. It can revitalize spiritual connection to those on earth plane and though the heavens above. Orange can help guide individuals to conquer fear of letting go of attachments.The fragrance uplifts those obsessions so they can see the full spectrum of sunshine!

Orange Essential Oil works well with the following chakras:
2nd chakra-Sacral: Promotes joy in sexuality and creativity.
3rd chakra Solar Plexus: Radiates joy from the solar plexus up through the heart. Helps restore confidence. Works well for digestion in this area as well.
4th chakra-Heart: Promotes lightheartedness and emotional upliftment. can help bring joy to individual feeling depressed or anxious.

Emotional and Energetic Benefits of Orange: Encourages joy, upliftment, lightheartedness, creativity, self-confidence.

Healing properties of Orange Essential oil include: Anti-depresent, antispasmodic, diuretic, antiseptic, calmative.

You can use the energy and healing powers of orange in a variety of ways this month. here are a few of my favorites.

Juicy orange slices1. It’s heating up outside. We all need to remember to keep our water intake up. But sometimes water can get boring. I love to place a few slices of orange into my water, I can smell it’s sweet scent and taste it’s joy with every sip I take. For additional yumminess try adding a few sprigs of lemon balm or mint leaves.

2. Make yourself a healthy snack with orange slices and chopped pineapple. The combination of these two  foods together has been known to combat depression within 48 hours after eating it. This combination has also been known to help aid in digestion and upset stomach. So keep this citrus combination around and eat it often to keep your mood up and your belly happy!

3. Mmmm nothing like infusing a room with the smell of sunshine aka orange! in a diffuser add a few drops of sweet orange essential oil and feel the joy! Don’t have a diffuser? That’s OK, you can always add a 6-8 drops to the air conditioning filter in your home. Once the air turns back on you will have a soft scent of orange through out your home.

4. Make an oil blend and use it on one of the chakras discussed above. In a 1oz amber bottle place 15-20 drops of sweet orange essential oil. Next add in your carrier oil such as jojoba, sunflower oil, or safflower oil. Let it sit for 5-10 minute before use. It will get stronger as time goes on but if you need a few extra drops feel free. Just keep in mind that orange essential oil is photosensitizing so be cautious about going into direct sunlight after use.

*Essential Oil Precaution* Do not use while pregnant. Do not use with children under 8 years. Do not ingest essential oils and always dilute with a carrier oil when placing on the skin. Keep away from children and pets.

Spiritual scent of Rose in aromatherapy

The sacred and spiritual scent of Rose is being called into our hearts and homes this month! Every month, I sit, I observe, I wait for my guides to lead me towards the aroma that will best invoke our senses and support our emotional well being for the month. The angelic realm is clearly stating that the sacred and spiritual scent this month is Rose!

Since ancient times, roses have symbolized God at work. The Rose has spiritual meaning in many religions. Muslims believe roses symbolize the human soul. Hindus and Buddhist see roses as symbols of spiritual joy. Christians are reminded of the virgin Mary when they see or smell a rose.

In addition May signifies the love and dedication of mom’s everywhere. Roses have traditionally been known as “The Flower of Mother’s” It is no surprise that the angels chose this scent as your guide for this month as they are perfectly tuned with a mothers heart. So thank you to all the mom’s out there this rose is for you!

Rose vibrates an energy of universal love in unconditional form. The scent of rose can envelop an entire   space with lightheartedness, compassion and love. And it does so by asking for nothing in return, it simply allows itself to be revealed petal by petal opening it’s heart for all to see, smell and experience. Rose above all else is the fragrance of love, the love that is so deep it touches our very soul.

Rose Otto Essential Oil works well with the following chakras:
2nd chakra-Sacral: Connects sexuality with the heart. Promotes creativity and love.
4th chakra-Heart: Promotes love and harmonizes the heart. Works especially well when the heart has been wounded by grief.
7th chakra-Crown: Promotes a sense of spiritual connection. An aroma loved by angels.

Emotional and Energetic Benefits of Rose: Encourages contentment, compassion, devotion, acceptance, inner freedom, love, sensuality and purity.

Healing properties of Rose Otto Essential oil include: Calming, anti-depresent.

You can use Rose in variety of ways this month. Here are a few of my favorites:

1. Buy yourself a beautiful bouquet this month and place them in an area you will see everyday. Take time to watch as they open their heart to you.

2. Plant yourself a rose bush and enjoy it all year long. Plant in an area that get’s 4-6 hours of sunlight per day. Water frequently and remember to stop and smell the roses often.

3. Make yourself a rose oil spray! In a 1oz amber spray bottle place 10 drops of rose essential oil add water and use as a room spray or linen spray. You can always add some other oils to make a complete blend as well. Rose essential oil mixes well with bergamot, geranium, jasmine, lemon, or sandalwood.

4. I recently purchased some rose incense and it is wonderful. I don’t even have to burn it to feel it’s effects, I can simply just take it out of the package and my entire room soon becomes a rose garden.

*Essential Oil Precaution* Do not use while pregnant. Do not use with children under 8 years. Do not ingest essential oils and always dilute with a carrier oil when placing on the skin. Keep away from children and pets.

Lemon Essential oil- Creating fresh new energy

Lemon Essential oil is known to clear and clarify the energy though upliftment and focus.  It creates an aura of openness and awareness. It helps to dispel negative thought patterns and negative energy that might be stuck around the auric field. It is used to cleanse and purify not only the body but also the mind.

Since the energy of this month is centered around cleansing and clearing (See Spring cleaning your mind
post
). I thought it would be great for us to explore how lemon might assist you in  a variety of ways.

Lemon Essential Oil works well with the following chakras:
Solar Plexus- Draws out the negative ideas centered around your power center and invokes more joy and strength.
Third Eye- Clears and cleanses the third eye so when one is ready they can see truth in all.

Emotional and Energetic Benefits: Lemon encourages awareness, direction, clarity, liveliness, joy, happiness.

Healing properties of Lemon include: Antidepressant, stimulant, antispasmodic, antiseptic, diuretic.

You can use Lemon in variety of ways this month. Here are a few of my favorites:

1.  Place a few drops of lemon essential oil in an infuser for your room or office.

2.  Drink it with warm water. Grab your favorite mug and squeeze in a half of lemon (use the fruit, do not use lemon essential oil) Add warm water and an option for agave or honey, sip and enjoy. Doing this as a morning routine will also help to detox and cleanse the kidney and liver.

3.  I love to make an oil blend for my feet at night. Lemon essential oil  is one of my favorites to add since it helps, to cleanse and detox the system. In a 1oz bottle add 8-10 drops of Lemon essential oil, pour 1/4 castor oil into the bottle and the rest using either grapeseed oil, saflower oil, sunflower oil, coconut oil, or olive oil. Let it sit for 5 minutes. Gently shake and then apply to the tops and bottoms of your feet before bed. NOTE, DO NOT USE BEFORE GOING OUT INTO THE SUN!  Lemon essential oil is photosensitizing avoid using if exposing yourself to sunlight or ultraviolet rays.

*Essential Oil Precaution* Do not use while pregnant. Do not use with children under 8 years. Do not ingest essential oils and always dilute with a carrier oil when placing on the skin. Keep away from children and pets.

Spring Clean YOUR MIND!

Spring cleaning is upon us, our homes, our offices. How about spring cleaning your mind as well! Whether we recognize it or not we receive messages from the Universe, Angels, God, Source, Higher Wisdom (insert the source you feel most connected to) each and everyday. However, when our mind is cluttered with thoughts we have a harder time recognizing this divine wisdom. If we continue to dismiss these signs, signals, messages, then eventually barriers end up on our path and life can become a struggle This is an indication that we are not living in “the flow” or in the present. Sometimes all we need is a good spring cleaning of the mind!

Here are some useful tips to spring clean your mind:

  1. Dump old outdated belief’s, most of us have beliefs that we have been holding onto for years (maybe even since childhood). Have you recently or in the past questioned any of those beliefs? Are you aware of any thought processes that are holding you back from living a happier healthier life? Perhaps a belief that you are ready to dump is not feeling worthy, maybe it’s a negative belief about money, or feeling alone/lonely. We all have negative belief systems. TODAY”S the day we DUMP them. Change those thoughts. Write a new affirmation, the negative one you have been using all these years is no longer serving you, so let’s make this one feel positive. Tell yourself a NEW uplifting story. Instead of telling yourself you can’t do something remind yourself of how spectacular you are and how you can do anything!
  2. One of the biggest things that can congest the mind is FEAR! So I CHALLENGE YOU to get out and do something that you are a little afraid of or very much afraid of. Challenge that fear, look it square in the eye and let it know that you won’t allow it to control you anymore. Go hike that mountain, run that race, dance, sing, public speak, ask someone out on a date. Conquer your fear and then go do it again. You will feel your own strength and wisdom come through.
  3. Clear out the physical clutter: You know that desk drawer you can barely open because it’s overflowing with EVERYTHING? Take 30 minutes and organize it. Throw out the old papers, receipts, pens that no longer work. Get rid of whatever doesn’t belong and then move on to the next space in your home that could use the same tender loving care. When we can clear out the physical clutter it helps clear out the mental clutter too. You will be amazed how much more light and free you feel.
  4. Take stock of what’s most important emotionally, physically, and psychologically. Journal or make a list of the things that are weighing you down or are having a negative impact on your life. What can you do to change those things? Sit quietly and listen, you might be surprised at the answers you receive, be sure to write those ideas down as well.
    Take time daily for yourself. Take a walk, take a nap, meditate, work out, read a book. Do something daily just for yourself allow it to be your own special gift for being so AWESOME!

Use Jasmine in your Aromatherapy Practice.

Jasmine will softly guide us to gentleness and ease. The words that I keep hearing is joy, happiness, gentleness, and ease. So as I reflect on the energy and emotions of these words I have to ask myself “what aroma/ fragrance will help support this”? The answer comes with Jasmine.

Jasmine takes us on a journey encouraging one to embrace the spirit and heart. It softly mirrors reflections to a greater understanding for the subtle motives of our spirit. It allows us to consider the greater purpose and connects us to our higher self.

Jasmine reminds us of softness, gentleness, and ease. To go with the flow and enjoy life in this moment this breath. It invokes a deep sense of spiritual joy, happiness and love.

It has been said that Jasmine is among the favorites for the angels. That the etherial can easily connect to it’s essence. When we connect to the fragrance of jasmine it is like inhaling heaven.

Jasmine Essential Oil works well with the following chakras:
Sacral- Connects spirituality and sexuality. Promotes creativity and artistic development.
Heart- Warms and opens the heart. Promotes heart felt expression.
Third Eye- Opens the mind to visions of deeper truths.
Crown- Heightens spiritual awareness.

Emotional and Energetic Benefits: Jasmine encourages awareness, optimism, openness, softness, refection, gentleness, comfort, inspiration, joy, happiness.

Healing properties of Jasmine include: Antidepressant, stimulant, antispasmodic, sedative.

You can use Jasmine variety of ways this month. Here are a few of my favorites:

jasmine-oil

1. Spring is arriving soon. Plant some jasmine in a pot for your patio or plant it in your yard. When the flowers blossom you will feel it’s soft subtle energy embracing you like a gentle hug.

2. Place a few drops of Jasmine essential oil in an infuser for your room or office.

3. There are many types of jasmine tea. Enjoy a cup for yourself. You can also place jasmine tea bag into your next bath. Melt yourself into the soft scent.

4. Make your own perfume or body oil blend usingJasmine essential oil. I like to blend with lemon for a clean citrusy fragrance, or ginger essential oil for a more grounded scent.Here is the recipe for both:

Jasmine & Lemon
In 1/2 oz amber bottle place 4 drops of jasmine essential oil and 8 drops of lemon essential oil into the bottle.Let it sit for 5-10 minutes with the cap on. Then add in a 1/2 oz of carrier oil (safflower, jojoba, or sunflower tend to work very well on the skin). Gently shake the mixture and let it sit for 5 minutes before using.

Jasmine & Ginger:
In 1/2 oz amber bottle place 5 drops of Jasmine essential oil and 2 drops of Ginger essential oil into the bottle.Let it sit for 5-10 minutes with the capp on. Then add in a 1/2 oz of carrier oil (safflower, jojoba, or sunflower tend to work very well on the skin). Gently shake the mixture and let it sit for 5 minutes before using.

Jasmine works well for the sacral chakra and heart chakra. Feel free to massage across any of these chakra areas for added support. You can also add a dab to your pulse points on the wrist or behind the ears as a perfume. Either way have fun with it. Be sure to spot check before applying a large amount to the skin. some oils can have harsh reactions to some skin types so use caution. Avoid using around the eyes, mouth, nose and ears.

*Essential Oil Precaution* Do not use while pregnant. Do not use with children under 8 years. Do not ingest essential oils and always dilute with a carrier oil when placing on the skin. Keep away from children and pets.

Cinnamon Essential Oil A Love Potion

Let’s explore the scent and energy of Cinnamon Essential Oil the aroma itself speaks the language of love. Let’s face it February is a month dedicated to love. So why not have an oil that’s very essence is love!

When one inhales the scent of cinnamon it reaches for the heart and touches the hidden pockets of self. The warmth radiates through us giving the receiver an opportunity to dive deeper into self-love which is all to often forgotten about. When was the last time you took yourself out on a date? Gave yourself a mental health day? Showed compassion for yourself? It is so important that we stay connected to our own inner love and by doing so we can more easily give love to others. This is why I have chosen Cinnamon to represent this months aroma. It reminds us that love is always there, all we have to do is tune into it’s warmth and you will hear it’s own love story.

Cinnamon Oil works well with the lower chakras as well as the heart. It tends to encourage self acceptance, self awareness, confidence and sexual expression. Cinnamon can also help emotionally to work through past trauma, jealousy, control and fear of vulnerability. Enhancing our relationships in healthy well balanced ways.

Emotional and Energetic Benefits: Cinnamon encourages Self-acceptance, inner-love, confidence, strength, generosity, motivation, sexual expression.

Healing properties of Cinnamon include: Analgesic (pain relieving), antiseptic, stimulant, antispasmodic.

You can use Cinnamon in variety of ways this month. Here are a few of my favorites:

1. Light a candle and after a few minutes of letting it burn place a few drops of cinnamon essential oil on the melted candle wax and let the candle continue to burn. As it does it will infuse a warm scent of cinnamon into the room. Note* please use caution when dropping essential oil onto the candle try to keep it away from the flame as essential oil is highly flammable.

2. Another way to infuse the room with cinnamon is by simmering 4-8 cups of water sprinkle a few dashes cinnamon spice to the water. The steam will infuse the space with cinnamons warm soothing love.

3. Cook a meal using Cinnamon spice (not essential oil). One of my favorite desert recipes is to chop up one apple. Place the chopped apple into a sauce pan and add 2 tblsp of water. Sprinkle Cinnamon spice on and around the apple slices. Let it simmer for 4-6 minutes. Scoop out the apple slices and serve with a sprinkle of granola over the top or vanilla ice-cream. Sit and enjoy.

4. Make your own perfume or body oil blend using cinnamon leaf (stay away from cinnamon bark as it it harsh on the skin). In 1/2 oz amber bottle place 1-3 drops of cinnamon leaf essential oil into the bottle. If you would like another oil added any one of these would mix well with cinnamon. Option to add 4-5 drops of any ONE of the following; Sweet Orange, lemon, bergamot, jasmine, geranium, lavender. Once you have your essential oil blended in an amber bottle add in a 1/2 oz of carrier oil (safflower, jojoba, or sunflower tend to work very well on the skin). Gently shake the mixture and let it sit for 5 minutes before using. Cinnamon works well for the heart chakra and the solar plexus so feel free to massage across either of those chakra areas for added support. You can also add a dab to your pulse points on the wrist or behind the ears as a perfume. Either way have fun with it. Be sure to spot check before applying a large amount to the skin. Cinnamon can have harsh reactions to some skin types so use caution. Avoid using around the eyes, mouth, nose and ears.

I hope this helps us all to have a new appreciation and understanding of for cinnamon. Have fun with the warmth and love this scent brings to you.

*Precaution* Do not use while pregnant. Do not use with children under 8 years. Do not ingest essential oils and always dilute with a carrier oil when placing on the skin. Keep away from children and pets.

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