Lavender is probably one of the most loved and recognized essential oils for its delicious, intoxicating smell and for all its varied uses. Personally I love to dab a little under my nose before falling asleep at night.
With every massage I give, I start with warm washcloths on the feet followed by a healthy dose of lavender and some reflexology to set a relaxing tone. Clients who love lavender also receive a drop on the forehead. It really eases the mind.
When shopping for the best (aka pure, clean, safe, therapeutic) lavender essential oil or any oil for that matter - and why would you want anything but the best ? - there are several things to know:
1. It is important to know that lavender has to be pure lavender oil. This doesn't mean that you can go into any health food store and buy any lavender sold. So many "lavender oils" are rejected from France, brought to the United States and cut with propylene glycol and synthetic constituents like linalyl acetate.
2. If you go to the health food store and see a 1/2 ounce (15 ml) of lavender for $8 or $12 you know that you're getting garbage because pure lavender oil can't even be purchased in France for that price.
3. There are four hybrids of lavender but they are all called lavendins. They are not therapeutic for aromatherapy usage, but that is what is typically sold in the United States.
4. Young Living lavender oil ($28.35 retail, $21.75 wholesale) is produced on company owned farms in France and in St. Marie's Idaho. In order to produce the finest lavender oil it's necessary to steam distill the plant at low temperature & pressure to preserve the therapeutic qualities.
Lavender has to be in the cooker chamber for a minimum of 1-2 hours, but the commercial distilling standards in Europe for the perfume industry is only 15 minutes at 400 degrees with up to 150 pounds of pressure and they pump chemicals into the water during the process.
5. It is true that France exports more lavender than it grows, proving that before the oil leaves the country, it is cut and extended with inferior ingredients!!
Lavender can be:
- reduces blood fat/cholesterol
- combats excess sebum on skin (great for pimples!)
University researchers in Japan found that diffusing certain aromas in an office environment dramatically improved mental accuracy and concentration. Diffused lemon resulted in 54 percent fewer errors, jasmine 33 percent fewer errors, and lavender 20 percent fewer errors.
University of Miami researchers found that inhalation of lavender oil increased beta waves in the brain, suggesting heightened relaxation. It also reduced depression and improved cognitive performance.
What's not to love about real lavender?? No wonder it's such a popular oil!
Be well, Longtime Lavender Lover Carla.
PS - Local Hilton Head Island/Bluffton readers: I place a bulk order the 1st of each month. Place your order through me (816.6179), or anyone can order direct by clicking on the graphic below.
1. Do you have questions about other ways to use lavender, what is a cold-air diffuser or what makes an essential oil therapeutic? If so let me know by commenting on this post or on Facebook. Forward & share this post with friends & family so that they can fall in love with lavender too. Click those cute social media buttons below to spread the message.
2. Find an Aromatherapist or 68 other types of holistic practitioners where you live on WellnessDestinationsCentral.com - America's Holistic Healthcare Directory.