By Ashley Doyle
I love essential oils. Not for the obvious reasons like scented bathes, homemade soaps, natural perfumes, and air fresheners. They don’t have just aromatic purposes. They also have cleansing abilities!
My exploration of the world of essential oils has led me into the science of aromatherapy and its healing abilities. I’ve always believed that if you didn’t need to turn to drugs then it was always better to use natural means of healing, and that includes essential oils. Sooo – essential oils are wondrous to me.
Now that I’ve discovered that I can clean with them, they have gone from been wondrous to magical. I mean, seriously!
And why not! These little bottles can be spread so far and be used for some many different purposes, it wasn’t a hard decision to go out and expand my collection of essential oils. Originally, I only had Lavender and Spearmint because I enjoyed putting a few drops in my bath after a long day. Now my collection includes Vanilla, Lavender, Spearmint, Tea Tree, and Lemon. However, I only use Tea Tree, Lemon, Eucalyptus, and Peppermint for cleaning. Mostly because I relate those scents to cleanliness.
Using these natural cleaners instead of chemicals is fun and healthy. You don’t have to spend all that money on extra cleaning supplies. All you need is an empty spray bottle, a bucket, a couple of old rags, and a few things you’ll find in every kitchen. Instead of having to air out by opening a few windows to get rid of the fumes, your house is left smelling wonderful :)
Another plus, its eco-friendly!
When I fist decided to switch to essential oils. I decided that I would find ways of incorporating essential oil cleaning as my cleaning supplies ran out. Luck would have it that the first thing that ran out was my all-purpose cleaner. So I tried using essential oils on my kitchen floors.
Now I have two recipes for the floor. I liked this first one because I feel it’s more of an all-purpose cleaner. It’s also perfect for hardwood floors. I actually liked it so much that I decided to make my own paper towelettes for easy cleaning.I was pretty excited about this especially when I realized that by making these I was only spending about .75 cents per batch of cleaning wipes. It only takes a couple minuets. So, it’s worth the time :)
This is how I did it.
You’ll need Floor Cleaning mixture, a paper towel, a canister with a plastic lid for holding the finished product, a sharp knife, and a needle.
Floor Cleaner (works on hardwood too)
1/2 cup white vinegar
1 gallon of warm water
2-3 drops essential oils
I started first by cutting a paper towel roll in half and then fit the halved roll into the container. Leave cardboard in, this will make it easier to find the paper towel in the meddle of the roll so that you can pull it out.
Next, pour your Floor Cleaning mixture in the container and wait until the towels have soaked up the mixture. Carefully remove the cardboard middle of the paper towels. You’re almost done!
Now pull the inner towelette pull and put it through the container, by puncturing a hole through the top and inserting the towelette through that hole.
And you’re done!
Here are a few suggestions for essential oil mixtures that you can use in your towelettes.
Lavender + Lemon
Citrus Blend: Lemon, Lemongrass, Orange, and Lime
Spicy Blend: Orange, Clove or Cinnamon
Sanitizing Blend: Tea Tree + Eucalyptus
Minty Refresher: Peppermint + Wild Orange
This next cleaner I love is explicitly to be as a floor cleaner. The essential oil mixture calls for is very nice and relaxing. I found myself enjoying the cleaning process. The suds were an added bonus…because I like bubbles...
Floor Cleaner (not hardwood friendly)
2 tablespoons unscented liquid soap
8 drops lemon essential oil
4 drops tea tree essential oil
1 gallon of warm water
I live in an older building. The change I saw in my floors with both recipes was a wonderful success.
Which…Is why I brought up the building I live in. This past month it had its 100th birthday! Which makes it one of the oldest buildings in the cit, which also means it has the most problems including …. spiders, and … mice. So I decided to test a theory I saw somewhere on the web.
According to “Essential Oils in Insect Control: Low-Risk Products in a High-Stakes World” by Catherine Regnault-Roger, Peppermint is one of the scents that insects and mice hate. They loathe it and, therefore, avoid it. Yayyy!!
So I switched out the lemon for peppermint oil.
The mice have retreated and I have seen no spiders. Granted, it’s only been a week, but I’m still calling it a success.
I’m still in the process of trying to replace my regular cleaning supplies with essential oil cleaning. So far I love it. It makes your house smell heavenly. The lack of chemicals isn’t as damaging to your skin and you don’t have all the left over fumes. Another reason I like it is that it is healthier for you to clean with essential oils. Natural and eco-friendly methods have always been better for the body and the earth.
Other Cleaning recipes I liked…
Laundry Soap Powder
2 cups washing soda (sodium carbonate)
2 cups Borax (sodium borate)
1 bar unscented Bear Berry Essential Castile Soap
3 teaspoons lavender tea tree essential oil
1 teaspoon lemon essential oil
1. Using a box grater, grate the soap.
2. In a bowl, thoroughly mix all ingredients until a damp powder forms.
3. Use up to 1/4 cup per normal sized load of laundry.
4. Store in a plastic container.
Toilet Bowl Cleaner
18 ounces water
1/4 cup liquid soap
4 drops lavender essential oil
4 drops tea tree essential oil
4 drops lemon essential oil
Combine ingredients in a 22-ounce spray bottle
Spray and scrub toilet bowl
Spotlight on Essential Oils -- Specifically Lemon
Lemon is known for its natural cleaning and disinfecting properties. The brain relates that scent with cleanliness. That the reason why when you breathe in a cleaner with lemon scent and the main way to describe it is clean. Simply put, this sweet scented lemon oil is a purifying oil perfect for cleaning.
Is Your House a Smoke House?
Burning herbs can eliminate bacteria and provide a quick way to administer herbal medicines. This practice has been around for a thousand years and has recently seen a comeback due to scientific evidence. Hospitals in Eastern Europe use smoldering Bearberry to rid hospital rooms of harmful bacteria, which has reduced the infection rate among their patience’s. The idea is not to burn the herbs but let them smolder to give off the smoke which contains the medicinal benefits. It only takes a little bit of smoke not a lot. Research shows that burning herbs for just 60 minutes cleans the air for 24 hours and reduces bacteria for up to 30 days.
There are three ways to do this in your own home. Use loose herbs, smudge sticks and herbal incense. I recommend herbal incense or smudge sticks. Loose herbs do not stay smoldering and require constant attention.
Here is one of our recipes for an herbal incense cone, that we use for getting rid of harmful germs that cause us to get sick during the cold and flu season.
Smudging (burning herbs and plant resins for medicinal and spiritual use) has been used since ancient times, by cultures all over the world for healing and to clear the buildup of emotional or spiritual negativity. Smudging is often viewed as some sort of magical practice, however recent studies at the National Botanical Research Institute have shown that there is scientific evidence that medicinal smoke is a powerful antiseptic that can purify the air of 94% of harmful bacteria for up to 24 hours and drastically decreased pathogenic bacteria for more than 30 days. These bacteria include those responsible for urinary tract infections, septic arthritis, sepsis and staph infections.
The authors of a 2006 study called “Medicinal Smokes” have concluded that smudging indeed has the ability to purify the air and that this practice is very efficient in delivering the medicinal substances to the brain promptly. When they are released through smoke, these substances are also absorbed by our organism faster and more effectively than through other methods. This analysis can be found in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology.
Although smudging and similar practices have been classed as “new age” or dismissed as fantasy or spiritual nonsense by those attempting to discredit them, research is scientifically proving that there are great benefits to the rituals that the Native Americans (along with many other indigenous groups) have inherently known of and practiced with faith throughout time.
Here are some herbs used in smudging.
White Sage (Artemisia ludoviciana) is effectively used in smudging as is other members of the Artemisia family. White sage is most commonly associated with this practice, very good as an antibacterial. White sage is one of the 4 sacred herbs of the Native Americans. It has 3 active constituens: Santonin, Artemisinin, and Thujone. Santonin is a drug which was widely used in the past as an anthelminthic, a drug that expels parasitic worms by paralyzing them, which allows
them to be passed out of the body. Artemisinin, also known as qinghao su by the Chinese is used against Plasmodium falciparum malaria. It was discovered by Tu Youyou, a Chinese scientist, who was awarded half of the 2015 Nobel Prize in Medicine for her discovery. Treatments containing an artemisinin derivative are now standard treatment worldwide for P. falciparum malaria.
Bay leaf (Laurus nobilis) has been used for a long time to prevent common colds and flu. The bay leaf contains a compound called linalool. A study by the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists found that linalool decreases anxiety and enhances social interaction. Bay leaves contain mycrene and eugenol. Both of these compounds possess great anti-inflammatory properties and are, in fact, used heavily in stress reduction therapy. When you burn a bay leaf, these compounds become airborne. Once inhaled, they will reduce any respiratory inflammation. This can work wonders if you suffer from allergies or have a bad cold.
Bearberry (Uva ursi) is a very good antimicrobial. Its active constituents include glycosides including arbutin and ericolin, Tannins, flavonoids, and resin. While uva ursi’s medicine may help to heal a urinary tract infection, Native Americans used it to clear the mind, as well as to help bring visions and guidance.
Cedar smudge has a very powerful cleansing ability. It contains over 20 different constituents. The major constituents in cedar smoke are acetic acid, limonene, elemol, α-cadinol, hexadecanoic acid, and kaur-16-ene. The cedar tree has been revered for its spiritual significance for thousands of years. Its wood was used for the doors of sacred temples and burned in cleansing ceremonies for purification. Cedar has a long history of use in indigenous sweat lodge ceremonies and the tree was thought to house important gods and to be an entrance to higher spiritual realms.
Sweetgrass contains coumarins which are antimicrobial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic and antioxidant. It is especially among the native tribes of North American that there are traditions of using this herb not only for religious ceremonies but also to a certain extent for medicinal purposes. The smoke of burning sweet grass was inhaled to treat colds and also used to keep insects at bay.
Rosemary activates and refreshes the body and soul and dispels negative forms of energy with its sharp aromatic vapor. It also boosts one’s self-confidence. Rosemary smoke has antioxidant, anti-infection properties. Rosemary constituents include About 1% volatile oil, camphor, camphene and cineole, diosmin, apigenin, diosmetin, genkwanin, 6-methoxygenkwanin, hispidulin, sinensetin, luteolin and derivatives, rosmarinic acid, carnosilic acid, carnosol, rosmariquinone; ursolic acid, oleanic acids, and carnosic acid (rosmaricine).
Juniper leaves emit warm, fragrant and spicy vapor that is thought to have a strong protective activity. The principal constituent is the volatile oil, with resin. Juniper has rubefacient, astringent, antiseptic, carminative, analgesic, stimulant, anti-inflammatory, detoxifying, anti-rheumatic, diuretic, expectorant, anti-catarrhal, antispasmodic, neurotonic and sudorific properties.
Mullien smoke has been considered as an effective remedy for a wounded soul. Its fragrance has a very relaxing effect on the nervous system. It has also been used extensively for lung issues including bronchitis. Mullein constituents include hesperidin, verbascoside and aucubin. Verbascoside has an antimicrobial activity notably against Staphylococcus aureus. It can also have anti-inflammatory properties and has
demostrated wide antioxidant and antimicrobial properties. Acubin has been reported in the Journal Of Toxicology as a powerful anti-toxin and is used to protect against liver damage.
The evergreen leaves of pine, fir and sprucepossess an especially potent cleansing ability. The pine has been revered and used all over the world. It was used as a traditional remedy by the Native American Indians, and there is a Taoist practice of surviving only on pine needles to gain supernatural powers that has its roots in the pine tree’s symbolism of integrity and honour. The Scandinavians used pine branches in saunas, and many cultures stuffed mattresses with pine needles to repel lice, fleas, and other insects. In fact, pine-needle mattresses are still used today in the Swiss Alps, as a remedy for rheumatism. Studies in both China and Russia have also found it to be Anti-Fungal, Anti-Bacterial & Anti-Viral, AntiOxidant & Anti-Aging, Helpful for Weight, Cholesterol & High blood pressure, Relieves Sore, Aching
Muscles, Stimulating to the Liver, Astringent for the Bladder, Relaxing to the Mind and Stress Relieving, AND Helpful in Restoring Overall Balance to The Body!
A word of caution
Smudge sticks and incense should never be left unattended. Also, the idea of smudging is not to produce huge amounts of smoke and to inhale it. This can result in respiratory problem, which would completely ruin its goal. Furthermore, smudging should not be practiced in a room where there are pregnant persons, children, and people who suffer from allergies, asthma or respiratory diseases.
C. S. Nautiyal, P. S. (2007, December 3). Medicinal smoke reduces airborne bacteria. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 114(3), 446-451. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2007.08.038
G. P. P .Kamatoua, M. V. (2010). Chemical composition of the wood and leaf oils from the “Clanwilliam Cedar”. South African Journal of Botany, 652-654. doi:10.1016/j.sajb.2010.04.002
Ji, S. (n.d.). Medicinal smoke can completely eliminate diverse plant and human pathogenic bacteria of the air within confined space. Retrieved from GreenMedinfo: http://www.greenmedinfo.com/article/medicinal-smoke-can-completely-eliminate-diverse-plant-and-human-pathogenic-bacteria-air
0 CommentsCold and Flu Relief1/20/2018
Combat the Cold and Flu
Its 2018 and the Cold and Flu Season is the worst I can remember. It seems that the vaccines are only partially helpful. The good news is there are other ways, Natural Ways, to boost our immune systems and help prevent and or shorten the illness. While there are many herbs that can help, my favorite is Elderberry Syrup. The flowers and berries of the Elderberry plant are nutritious, rich in flavonoids, and high in vitamin C, vitamin A, bioflavonoids, betacarotene, iron, and potassium. Elderberries are known to be effective against eight strains of influenza. This suggests that elderberries are superior to vaccines in preventing flu, because flu vaccines are only effective against known strains of flu, whereas the virus is continually mutating to new strains.” Elderberry has demonstrated its ability to prevent flu and colds when taken before infection. Taken after infection, it prevents spread of the virus through the respiratory tract. In a clinical trial, 20% of study subjects reported significant improvement within 24 hours, 70% by 48 hours, and 90% claimed complete cure in three days. In contrast, subjects receiving the placebo required 6 days to recover.”
To read about other herbs that can help go to http://www.bearberryessentials.com/holistic-blog/archives/09-2016
Here is my Elderberry Syrup Recipe.
Makes 1 Quart.
1 cup Dried Organic Elderberries
1/2 cup Dried Organic Elderflowers
4 Tbsp. Dried Organic Rosehips
4 Tbsp. Dried Organic Echinacea Root
4 cups Distilled Water
3 Tbsp. Organic Cinnamon Chips
3 tsp. Dried Organic Ginger
1 Cup of Local Honey
In an Insta pot combine all dry ingredients and 4 cups of distilled water, close top and on Manuel cook for 12 minutes then Quick Release and change to saute' mode for 10 minutes (Water should be reduced by 1/2)(In slow cooker cook until dried Herbs have softened then reduce water by 1/2.) smash, strain, and when cooled add about 1 cup of raw honey.
Bearberry Essentials has put together a Elderberry Syrup Kit that has all the ingredients except water and honey. Click the link below to order the kit.
Bearberry Essentials also has an Immune Boost Tincture.
Bear Berry Essentials LLC is a family business created to fulfill the dream doing something you love to do. Here at Bear Berry we want to provide you with the opportunity to find the healing power that comes from nature. We only carry organic or wild crafted (super organic as we like to call it) products. Join us today in ‘determining our future health’.
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