May Chang – A Princess or an Essential Oil?

Hello natural beauties! This oil has been popping up in my mind and in my oil collection lately so I thought it was about time (again), to have a closer look at May chang (Litsea cubeba), the sunny little oil that could.

 

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Buy my 100% natural and organic botanical perfumes, and paperback book here: suzannerbanks.com.au

Digital downloads of my book Revelation! Reveal your Destiny with Essentials Oils:

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

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The flower of Litsea cubeba – pic via ec.europa.eu/europeaid/

 

May Chang   Litsea cubeba

This gorgeous, sparkly essential oil is made from the berries of the tree which is native to China and south-east Asia. I was first introduced to it when a friend brought some back from her holiday in Thailand about 20 years ago. It’s part of the Lauraceae family which also holds cinnamon and rosewood. May chang, and these oils too, have a subtle peppery note about them too.

It is a lemon scented oil and is high in neral and geranial which is are monoterpenoid structures within the oil. It is however, more than that. It smells like bubbly lemonade. It has a 3D effervescence about it, and that’s probably not possible – can you smell effervescence?. Well I reckon you can in this lovely oil.

Mainly used for fragrance in soaps, May chang does have therapeutic properties in Aromatherapy and other modalities. In traditional Chinese medicine according to Salvatore Battaglia:

 

“….May chang is used to treat dysmenorrhoea that is relieved with heat or pressure, stomach aches, lower back pain, chills headaches and muscular aches from external conditions.”

 

So from this we can see that is has a warming quality to it, which you would expect from the local name of ‘mountain pepper”.It’s also described as a great oil for respiratory issues like asthma is it also being used in heart research in China.

 

Litsea cubeba berry- pic via /www.bellabaci.com

 

I call it a happiness oil. Here’s an excerpt from my book

“Revelation! Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils”

Chines

“If you search for May chang on the internet, you may come across images of a super-cute, young Chinese princess from the Chang clan in the Xing Dynasty. She is a fictional character in a Japanese manga series. Her quest is to seek the grand alchemist who will help her fine-tune her skills of making elixirs, master the art of chi to cure ailments, and bring her back to her clan back to its former glory by finding the secret to immortality.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Princess may chang – pic via http://vsbattles.wikia.com/wiki/May_Chang

 

…. I use it to call in the energy of the sun into my heart and maintain a sense of purity, innocence and lightness…. It seems the creators of Princess May chang took into the account the uses of the oil and transferred its healing properties into very essence. Perhaps one of the secrets to a long life is happiness?”

 

If you haven’t tried this gorgeous sunny oil yet please do – and let me know how much you love it!

Oils to Stimulate Your Mind and Inspire Remembering

Hello natural beauties I hope you’re all well and happy. I completely forgot to write an article last week as I’ve been doing lots of different things and have been staying at a friend’s place looking after her cat. It dawned on me one day “hmmm, I forgot to blog”. So I think my mind needs stimulation and I definitely need to remember a bit better. So here are some oils to stimulate your brain, get you thinking and clarify your thoughts. 

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Buy my 100% natural and organic botanical perfumes, and paperback book here: suzannerbanks.com.au

Digital downloads of my book Revelation! Reveal your Destiny with Essentials Oils:

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

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remember with rosemary

 

Rosemary

Sharp and strong, the scent of rosemary essential oil will awaken and stimulate your brain. Rosemary is the classic oil for remembering. Remember that! I’ve made my mum “smelling salts” and the main ingredient is rosemary. Just open a bottle and have a whiff!

If you can’t wake up in the morning, put a few drops in the bottom of the shower and have a whole body steam.

If you need to concentrate, study, focus and remember things, diffuse rosemary throughout your house or office – or just put a few drops on a hanky or make-up remover pad and sniff when you need as boost.

This ancient herb oil has been with us for centuries which proves it’s hardiness and usefulness, even in today’s modern society. It’s inexpensive too, easy to find, and easy to grow if you have a bit of sun. For some recipes check out

10 Recipes with Rosemary Essential Oil – Rosmarinus officianalis

 


 

 

Eucalyptus

Awaken, clean out your mind and get going with eucalyptus oil. This very distinctive scent will give you an instant brain-lift and help you put ideas into action. It is the oil of clearing and cleansing, so clean out the cupboards of your mind and make space for the thoughts that really count. Once again this oil is inexpensive and easy to find, and works well when cleaning the actual cupboards in your house. Have an aromatherapy treatment while you clean by adding a few drops to soapy water. Simple and easy. Check out these recipes:

10 Essential Oil Recipes to Inspire Creativity

and also a recent article from Australian perfumers about their thoughts on eucalyptus oil:

Eucalyptus – A Three Word Buzz

 


Black pepper

 

Black Pepper

From a story I wrote about black pepper for Australian Perfume Junkies:

“The essential oil of black pepper is a lot softer and sweeter than the taste, and is used in Aromatherapy for symptoms such as poor circulation, muscle and joint aches and pains, as treatment for bad digestion and as a general warming tonic. It has been used as an aphrodisiac, and an anti-dote to depression. Taking in all these properties, what can the divine scent tell us? Like many spice oils, it carries the energetic resonance of the evolution of humanity – really. Each drop, each whiff can link us to the past.

 

It’s an oil of warmth, expansion and action. It’s a stimulating scent to the brain and can certainly be employed to open your mind. When I smell black pepper straight from the bottle (the best way to experience an essential oil is to take off the lid and take a huge sniff) I am inspired to carry on. To me it’s an oil of searching for your purpose in life, and giving inspiration to go forward and seize the day.”

 

 


 

The stunning basil leaf makes a wonderful essential oil – pic by me

 

Basil

Refreshing and uplifting, the scent of basil can be quite soft as well as pungent. Often described in aromatherapy terms as “cephalic” (pertaining to the head), it is an expansive oil as it works on your mind and your brain.

What’s the diff between your mind and your brain? The brain is the organ which helps run the body performing amazing functions at a very small level. “The mind is the brain in action” says Dr Joe Dispenza the wonderful neuroscientist. The mind is multi-dimensional and allows us to understand, comprehend and evolve.

Have a whiff of basil to open yourself to the intelligence of the universe, and help you wake up to do your everyday work and chores. Check out these recipes:

(and BTW I wrote these two articles close together a while back, because I’d written one and forgotten about it ….. I think I see a pattern emerging …..)

10 Recipes with Basil Essential Oil – Ocimum basilicum

10 Recipes with Basil Essential Oil – Ocimum basilicum (part 2)

 


lovely lemongrass

Maybe its just being tired that adds to vagueness?

Try these recipes for fatigue, with oils including

Lemongrass, Black pepper, 

Rosemary, Cypress, Lemon, Basil, Pine, Cinnamon, Ginger, 

Wintergreen, Eucalyptus

10 Vapouriser Essential Oil Recipes for Exhaustion

 


 

Liven up with these stimulating essential oils and train your brain to remember!

Which oils do you like to waken up with?

 

Spring and Autumn – Nourishing Body Oil Blend Recipes for Seasonal Change

Hi natural beauties and natural scent lovers from all over the world! I hope you’re feeling wonderful and ready for some self-care and nourishment. It’s (almost) spring in Sydney and maybe you’re somewhere that’s starting to get a little chilly as the leaves are preparing to float away into the autumn breeze. Lets check out a few recipes to help your skin stay hydrated, plump and elastic.

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Buy my 100% natural and organic botanical perfumes, and paperback book here: suzannerbanks.com.au

Digital downloads of my book Revelation! Reveal your Destiny with Essentials Oils:

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

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A classic Australian native – wattle – spotted in the park yesterday

 

From Winter into Spring

You may be experiencing dry, flaky skin from being covered up all winter. Hot showers and indoor heating add extra dryness and you could even seem to have crocodile skin too! Especially on your legs.

Prepare your skin properly before smothering it in an oil blend. This could include

  1. dry brushing – which is fantastic for your skin and circulation too. Check out my article To Dry Brush or Not?
  2. skin scrub in the shower or bath made from natural ingredients like coffee, ground nuts and seeds and some oil
  3. body puff – rather than a loofah – see my article To Loofah or To Body Puff?
  4. have a shower to rid yourself of any skin floating around and get ready to oil up baby!

 

The best dry brushes are made from plant fibres and have detachable arms – pic via amazon.com

 

Nourishing Body Oil Blend

For a coat of your body use 3 teaspoons of carrier oil in a little dish and, add 7 – 8 drops of essential oil. It’s always best to patch test first, before you apply all over.

***** Always put the drops of essential oil into the bottle or dish first, then add the carrier oil. It gives the scents time to create a synergistic fusion.

For a 50ml bottle of oil add 25 drops and see my articles “Ratios for Blending Essential Oils – A Reminder of the Basics” and  “Aromatherapy – It’s Easy as 1 2 3”

 

“Gator Be Gone”

in jojoba

Bergamot .            3 drops

Lavender              3 drops

Carrot seed          2 drops


 

“Smooth and Sexy”

in almond oil

Orange                 4 drops

Ylang Ylang           2 drops

Patchouli               2 drops


 

“Spring Into Action”

in sunflower and grape seed oil

Peru Balsam        2 drops

Palmarosa            2 drops

Lemon                 2 drops

Peppermint          1 drop


 

Divine jasmine!

 

From Summer into Autumn

Have you had a lot of sun this summer? Even if you don’t go to the beach or spend time outdoors, and even if you wear sunscreen on your face, your skin is still living in a warmer environment and will need a different type of care.

Be gentle with your skin, especially on your face and prepare your self with a very gentle body and face scrub made from natural ingredients, shower off and smother yourself in a beautiful oil blend you have made especially for you!

 

“Feel the Heat”

in sunflower oil

Rose in 3% jojoba         20 drops *  see my article for more info on 3% blends in jojoba


 

“Soothe and Soften”

in jojoba oil

Mandarin         4 drops

Lavender         3 drops

Geranium        1 drop


 

” Sunkissed”

in apricot oil

Indian rosewood     4 drops

Marjoram                3 drops

Vetiver                    1 drop


 

Rose is the Queen of oils

 

Changing seasons brings new hope and new energy. With that energy, nourish yourself with luxurious body oil blends, all natural and created by you. 

Do you have a favourite blend?

 

Immortality – A New Botanical Perfume by banks botanicals

Hello natural beauties!. What does the Fountain of Youth mean to you? It’s time to introduce the next botanical perfume, immortality, from my perfume range called REVELATION. The 10 all-natural organic botanical perfumes correspond with my book of the same name. Each perfume represents a “Revelation Formula” from one of the ten chapters on essential oils. Immortality is about an holistic approach to living your life in creativity.

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Buy my 100% natural and organic botanical perfumes, and paperback book here: suzannerbanks.com.au

Digital downloads of my book Revelation! Reveal your Destiny with Essentials Oils:

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

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From the Fountain of Youth chapter in my book, I have created immortality the botanical perfume.

immortality 9ml roll-on bottle

 

“There is a fountain of youth: it is in your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life, and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.”

Sophia Loren, Actress

 

 

To embrace the Fountain of Youth, a legend present in many cultures, It’s not just about anti-ageing creams, botox and facelifts. It’s about a multi-dimensional approach to life which includes;

The physical aspects – eating well, being vibrant and healthy, maybe exercising, using great skin care (aromatherapy based of course), and minimising the use of chemicals in your life. This means getting rid of all the yucky cleaning chemicals as well as synthetic perfumes and synthetic fragrance in washing products too.

The mental aspects – release stress through techniques such as meditation and yoga, helping others, positive self-talk and using essential oils.

The spiritual aspects – learn to look past the wrinkles in the mirror to the oneness that connects us all. By using essential oils you will be able to improve your intuition and come to rely on it more, resulting in a more holistic approach to life.

Or just use this beautiful perfume I have created ….

 

“Molecules dissolve and pass away, but consciousness survives the death of the matter on which it rides.”

Deepak Chopra

 

 

immortality 1ml sample

 

The immortality formula combines happiness oils and some of the essential oils I have listed in the Fountain of Youth chapter of my book. All my perfumes are hand-made, organic, vegan, jojoba oil based.

immortality captures an indulgent scent of neroli and bergamot conjuring long, sunlit days drinking floral fruit punch in an infinite garden. Frankincense and everlasting daisy take you into the warm summer evenings and a little spice cajoles your heart into loving the true essence of your creative being.

The fountain of youth is within you.

Ingredients: essential oils of *bergamot, *neroli, *frankincense, *everlasting and *clove in  *jojoba. *certified organic. 

1ml sample    $22 AUD

9ml roll-on     $187 AUD

 

How do you connect to the fountain of youth?

The Wonders of Wintergreen

Thanks for tuning in again natural beauties. This week a client and friend brought me a gift from the USA – Wintergreen Life Savers. She had promised she would bring some back to me so I could have a taste – and had been inspired to do this after I used wintergreen in an oil blend for one of her treatments. She said that this lolly was a blast from the past and a loved candy from her childhood.

 

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Please check out my book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

 

As you can see from the comment in my pic above – wintergreen as a flavouring for a candy is very unusual for me (and I would think many Aussies too). To me it’s like eating a sports rub like Deep Heat or Dencorub. It is commonly used as a flavouring in America, but I’m not sure if it’s embraced the same way in other parts of the world. After the initial blast and sensation of the essential oil of wintergreen in my mouth, the fragrance subsided into a general sweetness. Phew.

Some of my classic aromatherapy text books warn against using this oil at all, which seems strange when you can eat it in a lolly )this is however, at an extremely low dosage). Wintergreen is an essential oil of warmth, expansion and healing and can be used in an external oil blend for:

  • sore muscles
  • a chest cough
  • a headache
  • tension
  • poor circulation

I think the reason this oil is misunderstood is that some texts say it is high in the same chemical constituents that are in aspirin – but that’s not quite true. It has a high concentration of methyl salicylate ……

“Methyl salicylate is good for some people, not for others. A blanket contraindication is not necessary, but it is best avoided in pregnancy – all salicylates are teratogenic in sufficient amount, including methyl salicylate and aspirin (acetyl salicylic acid). Methyl salicylate must be absolutely avoided by anyone taking blood-thinning drugs, as it increases the action of the drug, and this causes blood to leak into tissues and  internal bruising occurs.

 

Wintergreen oil has some wonderful properties, but I would not like to see it used at more than 5%.”

 

Robert Tisserand

 

wintergreen - Gaultheria procumbens

wintergreen – Gaultheria procumbens

 

NB: As Robert Tisserand says above, he would not recommend using this at a higher concentration then 5%. Well 5% is a very high concentration in aromatherapy as mostly our oil blends are a standard 2.5%.

I have used this oil with an elderly client who is on blood thinners and it really helps him with back pain. I don’t use it all the time and when I do make a blend I always add other oils too.

Common sense and intuition must always play a part when you use essential oils. One size does not fit all. 

 

Here are a few recipes for an oil blend at 2.5%

For a coat of your body use 3 teaspoons of carrier oil in a little dish and, add 7 – 8 drops of essential oil. It’s always best to patch test first, before you apply all over.

***** Always put the drops of essential oil into the bottle or dish first, then add the carrier oil. It gives the scents time to create a synergistic fusion.

For a 50ml bottle of oil add 25 drops and see my articles “Ratios for Blending Essential Oils – A Reminder of the Basics” and “Aromatherapy – It’s Easy as 1 2 3”

 

Wintergreen with frost - pic via http://tcpermaculture.com/

Wintergreen with frost – pic via http://tcpermaculture.com/

 

“BRRR I’m Freezing”

Wintergreen     1 drop

Lemon             7 drops

 


 

“The Anti Cough”

Wintergreen         2 drops

Marjoram             2 drops

Frankincense     4 drops

 


 

“Period Pain-Away”

Wintergreen     2 drops

Lavender         4 drops

Peppermint     1 drop

 


 

“Oh My Aching Knees”

Wintergreen     3 drops

Ginger             3ginger drops

Cypress          2 drops

 


Do you like wintergreen?

Remember to treat yourself first, then everyone will benefit.

Check out my YouTube channel too, thanks.

copyright-2017

Lavender for Summer AND Winter Skin

Video

Hello natural beauties I hope you’re all faring well after the New Year. I’m so grateful I’ve been having  lots of lovely beach time this summer, which also means I have tan, and have been exposed to lots of UV rays. Lavender is the perfect essential oil to cool summer skin, but even if you’re in the dead of winter, it’s perfect for you too! Read on to find out how this amazing oil of oils can help you now ….

 

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Please check out my book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

SUMMER

  • Lavender has always been used to treat burns as its high linalool and linalyl acetate content helps soothe hot skin.
  • Used as a calming oil you can see how this relates to stress, sleep, healing skin and soothing skin too.
  • Mix a few drops of lavender oil into some natural aloe vera gel for the perfect after-sun treatment (although it can be a bit sticky)
  • Add a few drops of this amazing oil into your favourite body or face moisturiser to help soothe and repair sun damaged skin
  • Have a luke warm bath with some coconut milk and 4 drops of lavender
  • Make a body oil blend with lavender and your favourite cold pressed oil using this ratio:

 

lovely lavender in my neighbour's planter box out the frot

lovely lavender in my neighbour’s planter box out the front

 

Nourishing Body Oil Blend

For a coat of your body use 3 teaspoons of carrier oil in a little dish and, add 7 – 8 drops of essential oil. It’s always best to patch test first, before you apply all over.

***** Always put the drops of essential oil into the bottle or dish first, then add the carrier oil. It gives the scents time to create a synergistic fusion.

For a 50ml bottle of oil add 25 drops and see my articles “Ratios for Blending Essential Oils – A Reminder of the Basics” and “Aromatherapy – It’s Easy as 1 2 3”

 

“After Sun Special”

Lavender        4 drops

Peppermint    2 drops

Vetiver            1 drop

 

I took this pic in Mexico in 2014

I took this pic in Mexico in 2014

 


WINTER

Warm up in winter with essential oils

Warm up in winter with essential oils

 

While lavender is wonderful for soothing and calming summer skin how can it help you in winter?

  • Lavender is an ancient healing herb oil that has strength and tenacity which is what one often needs to brave the winter months
  • Your skin can become very dry due to many reasons – artificial heating, hot showers and baths and by being continually covered up the dead skin cells often don’t have anywhere to escape to, leaving you dry and flaky
  • Lavender is the perfect oil to nurture you in the cold by doing steam inhalations to bring colour and life into your face – even add a few drops to your shower to give you an all over steam inhalation
  • Add a few drops to a hot foot bath to increase circulation
  • And as above: add a few drops of this amazing oil into your favourite body or face moisturiser to help soothe and repair dry skin
  • Make a body oil blend with lavender and your favourite cold pressed oil using the ratio above:

“Warm me up, Give Me Strength”

Lavender         3 drops

Rosemary        2 drops

Ginger             2 drops

 

Lavender in Sydney

Lavender in Sydney

 

“When in doubt, use lavender”

                       Suzanne R Banks

Ah yes there I go quoting myself again, hehe.

Do you use lavender all year round? I’d love to know x

copyright-2017

FESTIVUS 2016! Aromatic Insights into the Best Holiday in the World!

Hi gorgoues people. I’m not ashamed to say that this is a reblog from last year – gotta take a short cut once in a while …….

 

Festivus is here again and I couldn’t be more excited. I’ve created some new recipes to stand alongside the key parts to this wonderful day. What is Festivus you may ask? It’s the holiday that crushes Hanukkah and Christmas, allows a coming together of like minds, and gives a day of fun for those who are not religious. Celebrated by George Costanza’s father, Frank, (from the comedy show Seinfeld), let’s embrace this fabulous celebration!

 

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Please check out my new book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

 

Festivus for the rest of us! pic via www.tshirtbordello.com

Festivus for the rest of us! pic via http://www.tshirtbordello.com

 

To be more precise it’s the family of the writer of this episode who created Festivus:

Festivus was conceived by editor and author Daniel O’Keefe and was celebrated by his family as early as 1966. In the original O’Keefe tradition, the holiday would take place in response to family tension, “any time from December to May”.] The phrase, “a Festivus for the rest of us”, also derived from an O’Keefe family event, the death of Daniel O’Keefe’s mother.
Wikipedia

 


The Festivus Pole

The Festivus Pole

 

The Festivus Pole replaces the Christmas tree and stands unadorned:

“Frank Costanza cites its “very high strength-to-weight ratio” as appealing. During Festivus, the pole is displayed unadorned. According to Frank, “I find tinsel distracting.”

Wikipedia

 

I love the simplicity of the Festivus pole and I’m hoping it can inspire you to simplify this Christmas Here are a couple of blends for yourself, to help to feel less stressed and more streamlined.

Method: Nourishing Body Oil Blend

For a coat of your body use 3 teaspoons of carrier oil in a little dish and, add 7 – 8 drops of essential oil. It’s always best to patch test first, before you apply all over.

***** Always put the drops of essential oil into the bottle or dish first, then add the carrier oil. It gives the scents time to create a synergistic fusion.

For a 50ml bottle of oil add 25 drops and see my articles “Ratios for Blending Essential Oils – A Reminder of the Basics” and “Aromatherapy – It’s Easy as 1 2 3”

Silver

Lemongrass                  3 drops

Cedarwood Virginian     2 drops

Peru Balsam                  2 drops

*************

La Verité

Bergamot                     5 drops

Geranium                     2 drops

Vetiver                          1 drop


 

The Airing of Greivances

The Airing of Grievances

 

Ah yes the Airing of Grievances, straight after the Festivus dinner, seems a good way to finish off the year and start the new year afresh. Here are a couple of blends for your space to support this difficult yet necessary part of Festivus.

Method: Scent Your Space

In a traditional oil burner with a candle or a diffuser add 25 drops of oil

Release Frustration and Anger

Mandarin         12 drops

Ylang Ylang       6 drops

Marjoram           4 drops

Frankincense     3 drops

**************

Forgive

Orange          10 drops

Palmarosa       8 drops

Lavender         4 drops

Patchouli         3 drops

 


 

Feats of Strength!

Feats of Strength!

 

The Feats of Strength championship finalises the Festivus celebrations. As depicted above, when the head of the household is pinned to the ground, the day concludes. here are a couple of blends to help you find inner strength this holiday time.

Method: Pure Pulse Point Perfume

In a little dish mix these oils and anoint your pulse points or chakras – 3 drops of essential oils and dilute with a few drops of carrier oil – always patch test first!

Courage and Endurance

Lavender                1 drop

Black Spruce         1 drop

Lime                      1 drop

*********

Inner Calm

Melissa                   1 drop

Vanilla CO2             1 drop

Indian Rosewood    1 drop


Whatever you’re doing this Christmas season, whether you celebrate or not, I hope you are able to reflect on the good things life can bring – even if they are very small.

How will you be celebrating and which oils are calling to you?

Remember to treat yourself first, then everyone will benefit.

copryright SR Banks 2015