Every spring I begin receiving notifications from my artisan distillers reminding me that it’s time to pre-order my hydrosols for the year. This involves carefully calculating how much of each plant distillate we'll need for the upcoming year. Artisan distillers produce mostly according to their wholesale buyers' pre-orders and, while they might have a little left over for retail sale, you can't rely on it being there for you later in the year.
Most North Americans have grown up using lotions rather than oils for body care moisturizing, but if you’re an advocate of natural skincare, switching to a therapeutic blend of cold pressed, organic oils to pamper your skin has some great upsides.
A body oil can be used anywhere you would normally use a lotion. A lightweight oil blend absorbs quickly and provides a higher concentration of targeted ingredients than a basic lotion. The average body lotion contains 70% water based ingredients plus an emulsifier to bind the water and oil together. You can provide your own water content to your body oil by simply applying it straight out of the shower before toweling off. In so doing, you are creating an on-the-spot emulsion. Using just a small quantity of oil onto damp skin, means that a little goes a long way.
Plantain (plantago lanceolata L.) is considered a common weed and can often be found in our backyards. I have seen masses of it in our surrounding Bay Area hills while hiking. Plantain has a long history in herbal medicine, and many of its remarkable medicinal qualities have been confirmed by modern science. Used topically, it is effective on many kinds of skin disorders by simply bruising its leaves and rubbing them onto the skin. Alternatively it can be made into an oil or balm and stored for convenient later use.
Many of our customers ask me to suggest skincare products for their teen or young adult children who struggle with acne. Usually I recommend the same oil serum that they've been using with great results for their mature and sun-damaged skin. It may seem counter-intuitive, but plant based oils can actually be extremely therapeutic for problems with acne.
We've had a number of great reviews of our products lately, and a very nice bio on Nancy Newsom, our founder, written for The Expat Woman. The Expat Woman is a San Francisco based online resource that helps creative, career-driven expat woman navigate and enjoy their lives in the US.
As you contemplate your next visit to the dermatologist, you might find yourself a little unnerved by this video. As Colossal explains:
Artist Thomas Leveritt recently setup a special UV motion camera in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park with the intent of filming random passersby. Ultraviolet rays have the ability to expose not-yet-visible changes to human skin, namely freckles, that turn even the most unblemished faces into dark explosions of dots. Leveritt installed a monitor above the camera so people could instantly see the results, and then to heighten the effect, supplied them sunscreen in a vivid demonstration of why you should probably never again step outside without it.