Close

(877) 437-2741 info@herbscancleanse.com

Blog

by

What is Aromatherapy?

What is aromatherapy? Why should you use it? What kind of results can you expect from aromatherapy? In this blog and the next we’ll introduce some basic ideas about this holistic healing tool.

Aromatherapy uses natural plant extracts to promote your health and well-being. You might also hear it called essential oil therapy. This modality uses aromatic essential oils medicinally to improve the health of your body, mind, and spirit! At Herbs Can Cleanse, we believe that these three aspects of ourselves work best in balance. Aromatherapy is one modality we use to enhance this balance.

Aromatherapy was used in ancient cultures in China, India, Egypt, and elsewhere. Aromatic plant components were used in resins, balms, and oils. If you study the history of aroma in these ancient cultures, you find they were used for both medical and religious purposes, illustrating their value on many levels.

Our modern distillation of essential oils is attributed to the Persians, in the 10th century, though the practice may have been in use before this. Information about the distillation of essential oils was first published in the 16th century in Germany, and French physicians in the 19th century were familiar with aromatherapy’s potential in treating disease.

Some of the body-level benefits you may experience from using aromatherapy include pain reduction, improved sleep, stress and anxiety reduction, relief of sore joints, headaches, or migraines, reduction of bacteria, virus, and fungus, and improved immunity! Many of the product descriptions for our essential oils include their potential uses, and we’ll discuss this in future blogs as well.

Generally, we experience aromatherapy through our sense of smell or through topical application. Diffusers, spritzers, and inhalers introduce the aromatherapy through the sense of smell. Body oils, creams, or lotions introduce the aromatherapy through the skin (care is required; never apply an essential oil directly to your skin). Bathing salts, facial steamers, hot and cold compresses, and clay masks combine introduction through our sense of smell and through our skin. As you learn more about aromatherapy, you’ll learn which application is best.

At Herbs Can Cleanse, we carry a number of high-quality essential oils! Take a look, and watch our blog for more information about using our products!

by

Aromatherapy and the Chakras, Part 3

Today we continue our discussion of the chakras and the use of essential oils to heal ourselves from this level. If you’re joining us late, please read the last two blogs for background to enhance your understanding!

The fourth, or heart chakra, is located in the center of the chest. As this wheel spins, it carries energy relating to our ability to be in affinity with ourselves, with our tribe, with strangers, and with the world. Many people experience blocks in this chakra by focusing on the wellbeing of others at their own expense, putting others needs first.

Rose essential oil can help soothe this chakra and allow the wheel to spin with unconditional acceptance of what is. If you find yourself fighting with life, try balancing this chakra with the sweet, floral scent of the rose oil.

The fifth, or throat chakra, is located at the cleft of your throat. This wheel carries energy relating to communication and self-expression. A writer experiencing writer’s block is probably blocked on this level. Energies blocking the spin of this wheel might also manifest as sinus infections, sore throats, etc.

Eucalyptus oil, famous for its ability to help clear sinuses and soothe a sore throat, also helps clear blocks on other levels, allowing a freer flow in communication and creativity!

The sixth, or brow chakra, is located at the forehead between the eyes. Commonly called the third eye, this wheel also carries energy relating to perspective and intuition! Blocks here can manifest as headaches or a rigid perspective.

Lavender oil, with its calming scent, is great for headaches. It also helps calm the mind, loosen rigid thinking, and allow access to a higher state of consciousness!

The seventh, or crown chakra, is at the top of the head. This wheel carries energy about our connection to source and our highest spirituality. Blocks to the spin of this wheel can manifest as ringing in the ear or a consciousness that is locked into the physical plane.

Frankincense is one of the most spiritually charged oils! Use it to help clear your spiritual connection, enhance mental peace and clarity, and help you attain a higher perspective!

Visit us in the Essential Aromas section for high-quality essential oils, body products, and other carefully sourced, high-quality items!

by

Aromatherapy and the Chakras, part 2

In our last blog we talked about the effects of essential oils, in the aromatherapy setting, when used to heal the subtle energies of the body. In this blog we’ll discuss the basics of using some readily accessible essential oils to stimulate and tonify the chakras.

Good physical health and your ability to heal is enhanced by your mental and emotional state. One ancient way of doing this is by strengthening the chakras. These spinning wheels, representing our life cycles and offering an opportunity to affect all levels of health as the wheel spins.

The first, or root, chakra is located at the base of the spine in the tailbone area. This is where our sense of security lies, and this chakra is thought to be connected to the adrenal glands. It processes energy that helps your body on the physical plane.

Patchouli oil enhances your sense of grounding and stability, relieving you of certain anxieties and apprehensions. The sweet and musky scent of Patchouli oil is often used in perfumes and colognes and can emit a natural musk when applied to the skin. Also great in diffusers!

The second, or sacral, chakra is in the lower abdomen, about two inches below the navel. This wheel carries energy related to sexuality and sensuality through the different levels. When this chakra is blocked we may experience depression or a separation of our mental state from our sensual/sexual state!

Ylang ylang and sandalwood both act as tonifiers for this chakra and help relieve blocks, freeing energy to heal and balance your emotional and sexual life. Ylang ylang (literally, flower of flowers) has a sweet, floral scent, and in Bali the flowers are used to decorate the newlyweds’ wedding bed! Sandalwood, with its rich, woody aroma, helps ground your emotions and keep you from being overwhelmed by them.

The third, or solar plexus chakra is located above the belly button. This wheel carries energy and information about who we are as empowered beings and also how energy (both physical and subtle) moves through our system. If your self-esteem and self-confidence are low, you may have blockages in this chakra.

Cinnamon oil can help warm this power center. If you lack a sense of yourself as empowered, try this oil to awaken this chakra. Or, if you tend to be aggressive, pushy, or you overwhelm others, try peppermint oil to cool the excess fire in this chakra.

In the next blog, we’ll discuss the remaining chakras, their meanings, and what oils support healing in those areas.

Don’t forget to visit our Skin & Body Care section of the site! We offer quick shipping and a personal approach to customer support. If you’d rather place your order on the phone that’s fine too. Give us a call at (510) 222-4757.

by

Aromatherapy and the Chakras

Essential oils as used in the practice of aromatherapy don’t work in the same way many other treatments work. For example, you know when you take an aspirin, there’s a specific chemical process that impacts your body. This is where western medicine excels, in the treatment of acute situations.

Aromatherapy, instead of having this direct and intrusive impact on your body, stimulates healing in other ways. The smell receptors in your nose communicate with parts of your brain (such as the amygdala and hippocampus; https://www.umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/treatment/aromatherapy retrieved 2/18/2018). Many believe that by stimulating these primal brain centers aromatherapy can influence physical, emotional, and mental health.

Many also believe that, rather than the health of the body being separate from mental or emotional health, these are entwined, each influencing the other. Many have noticed that they’ll get a cold a few hours or days after an emotionally overwhelming experience, for example. If this theory resonates with you, you may find value in the use of aromatherapy to stabilize your mental and emotional state, thereby creating a more stable state of physical health!

Certain schools of thought (yoga and Ayurveda for example) diagnose and treat our health through the chakra system. The word chakra means wheel, and represents the cosmic principles relating to life cycles. For example, the cycle of spirit, to emotions, to mental state, and to physical body. These wheels turn, and by turning impact us on all levels. The chakras are not physical constructs, but many believe they are connected to the endocrine system and the so-called ductless glands.

Aromatherapy has traditionally been used to stimulate or balance these chakras, clearing blocked energies and enhancing the natural cycles of the wheels. Many schools of thought focus on the seven main chakras, located up and down the spine, each processing information about a different area of life in the physical body. There are, however, many more chakras, generally considered in groups relating to each of the 7 major chakras. The Vedas and Upanishads speak of twenty-one chakras, roughly three in each major chakra grouping.

If you’re reading this blog, you probably have experience with aromatherapy. Perhaps for safe cleaning of your home, or perhaps for atmospheric and mood enhancement. You may already know that aromatherapy is an effective way to impact our lives. In the next blog, we’ll discuss the seven major chakras and how to bring your aromatherapy practice into that area of your life!

Make sure to visit us regularly at our Natural Skin & Body Care section for quality products that incorporate high-grade essential oils!

by

Aromatherapy and allergies

Many people experience seasonal allergies. Sometimes they come in late winter or spring, but they can also come in late summer and into the fall. Are you an allergy sufferer? Maybe you notice it once in awhile, when something you’re allergic to blooms. Or maybe you have an allergy season, and the allergies hit you hard during specific times of the year. If so you’ve probably tried over the counter aids that leave you drowsy or jumpy and don’t really provide much relief.

Essential oils can be used instead or together with other treatments, and you may find additional relief through this safe and sense pleasing approach. As always, please be sure to properly diffuse the oils using a reliable aromatherapy diffuser. Or, to use an oil topically, dilute with a carrier oil of your choice. (Sweet almond or olive oil both work well.)

Here are some suggested oils for allergy relief:

1. Lavender. This oil may help soothe your symptoms during allergy season because of its ability to calm and reduce inflammation. A study published in ScienceDirect (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lfs.2014.05.018) showed that lavender oil prevents allergic inflammation as well as the enlargement of mucous cells. Good bye, stuffy nose!

Try it in a diffuser or add a few drops to your bath.

2. Blend sandalwood,, frankincense, and Ravensara oil. This blend may help to treat perennial allergic rhinitis. People have noticed an improvement in blocked nasal passages, runny or itchy noses, and sneezing.

Diffuse or mix with a carrier oil and apply to the skin as needed.

3. Eucalyptus. This oil is known as an anti-inflammatory and may help with congestion. The cooling sensation also seems to promote a sense of relief.

Breathe the aroma from the bottle, or put a drop or two in steaming hot water, and inhale the moist, warm, fragrant air.

Don’t use if you have an allergy to eucalyptus.

4. Tea tree oil. This oil is said to help with many allergy symptoms because of its anti-inflammatory properties. Some are allergic to tea tree oil, so use carefully if you are uncertain of your status. This oil should never be swallowed. Diffuse in the bathroom to take advantage of its additional antibacterial properties.

5. Peppermint. Peppermint essential oil is known to reduce inflammation. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21144345). Used carefully because of its strength, it can help you breathe easier. Diffuse peppermint oil properly, or dilute with a neutral carrier oil.

Visit our store to buy these and other essential oils. While you’re there you can browse the rest of our aromatherapy-based skin care products and other health supplements.

by

Mood and Productivity

Smell is the strongest of our senses and the one best able to influence brain activity. This is why aromatherapy can be so effective! Your sense of smell is part of the limbic system and directly connects to parts of the brain that process emotion and learning. Have you ever noticed that a smell will trigger a memory or remind us of something or someone? This is why.

Here are five scents that are recommended to boost productivity and mood:

Lemon. This scent promotes concentration and has calming and clarifying properties. This may help if you are feeling anxious, angry, or run down. Additionally, its antiviral and antibacterial properties may help fight colds and sore throats!

Lavender. Lavender has calming properties that help relieve emotional stress. It is soothing to the nerves and can relieve your nervous tension as well as help with headaches.

Jasmine. This light floral scent is also used to calm the nerves and has uplifting qualities that may produce a sense of confidence, optimism, and revitalization.

Rosemary. Rosemary improves memory retention and helps relieve physical exhaustion, headaches, and mental fatigue. Some use this oil in the mornings to help get going or topically for muscle aches and pains.

Cinnamon. Stimulating cinnamon oil can help fight mental fatigue and improve your concentration and focus.

Use these oils in an inhaler or put a few drops on a cotton ball and inhale as needed. To use topically, dilute with a carrier oil such as sweet almond (so good for the skin).

by

Stress and the Relaxation Response

Responding to stress in today’s world challenges many people. Whether you are trying to keep up with a new job, or balancing responsibilities from both family and work, or a stay at home parent caring for a family, stress can build up! Staying in a constant state of stress will eventually have negative health effects.

Cortisol, also called the stress hormone, is part of the body’s natural response to stress. But if you are constantly at the same stress level, and this hormone doesn’t disperse, it can decrease immunity, bone density, and quality of life.

Practicing consistent and intentional self-care will support our natural relaxation response and help balance cortisol levels. This is essential for long-term wellness.

Aromatherapy is one effective self-care method we can use to enhance the relaxation response and help replace stress with satisfaction.

Aromatherapy, when used properly, triggers the relaxation response. Combined with other known methods, such as deep breathing, self-massage, or meditation, aromatherapy will help you reap many health benefits from the relaxation response to the stress of modern life. It’s important to take time for yourself every day, even if that means stolen moments here or there.

Aromatherapy is flexible and portable, so be creative! Create a synergy of undiluted essential oils in a smaller bottle, using 3-5 essential oils. Try palmarosa, neroli, and bergamot (or your own favorites), and have this therapeutic synergy ready to inhale directly from the bottle between clients or before and after a meeting. Simply waft this bottle under your nose while taking, deep, even inhalations. Repeat up to 3 or times a day as needed. Blend your favorite selection of anise, basil, clary sage, geranium, grapefruit, lavender, sweet orange, tangerine, and ylang-ylang and diffuse in your favorite diffuser at the end of the day or during an afternoon rest period. Make your own dryer sheets by sprinkling a few drops of lavender or sweet orange on a clean washcloth made of organic cotton and toss in the dryer with your clothes.

Herbs Can Cleanse is your source for all of Plant Life’s wonderful products. We feature personal and service, and answers to all your questions. Take a look at the catalog, and try our Single Note Essential Oils, or helpful blends!

by

Top 15 Essential Oils Health Benefits

Each and every essential oil contains compounds believed to provide unique healing and therapeutic benefits. Here are some of the most popular essential oils and how to use them. Remember to work closely with a health care professional when using essential oils.

Clove: May provide anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic and antioxidant protection.
Clove Bud blends well with: Lavender, Lemon Cold Pressed Essential Oil, Peppermint, Rosemary

Cypress: Thought to improve circulation, reduce varicose veins, and lift confidence.
Cypress blends well with: Bergamot, Clary Sage, Fennel, Grapefruit, Lavender, Lemon, Rosemary

Eucalyptus: May improve respiratory issues like bronchitis, sinusitis, and allergies. Invigorating and purifies the body.
Eucalyptus blends well with: Lavender, Lemon, Peppermint, Rosemary

Frankincense: Thought to build immunity, reduce inflammation, heal age spots.
Frankincense blends well with: Lavender, Lemon, Myrrh, Sandalwood

Ginger: Believed to reduce inflammation, support joints, improve digestion and relieve nausea.
Ginger blends well with: Eucalyptus, Frankincense, Lemon

Grapefruit: May support metabolism and cellulite reduction. Mix with coconut oil and rub on areas of cellulite or take a few drops internally with water.
Grapefruit blends well with: Lavender

Lavender: Promotes relaxation, improves mood and may help to heal burns and cuts.
Lavender blends well with: Clove Bud, Cypress, Rosemary

Lemon: Great to use in homemade cleaning products.
Lemon blends well with: Eucalyptus, Frankincense, Ginger, Lavender

Myrrh: May provide natural anti-septic protection and thought to prevent or reduce infections. Also, supports beautiful skin, helps reduce stretch marks.
Myrrh blends well with: Clove Bud, Frankincense, Lavender, Sandalwood

Oregano: May kill fungus and help you kick a cold fast.

Peppermint: Supports digestion, improves focus, boosts energy, fever reducer, headache and muscle pain relief.
Peppermint blends well with: Rosemary, Eucalyptus, Lemon

Rose: Thought to reduce skin inflammation and great for creating glowing skin. Add a few drops to your facial moisturizer. One of the most valued essential oils in the world.
Rose blends well with: Lavender, Rosewood, Sandalwood

Rosemary: Can naturally thicken hair. May improve brain function and memory. Try it when working, reading or studying.
Rosemary blends well with: Lemon, Lavender

Tea tree oil (melaleuca): natural anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, reduces bad odors and can help stimulate the immune system.
Tea Tree blends well with: Clove, Cypress, Eucalyptus, Ginger, Lavender, Lemon, Rosemary

Sandalwood: Natural aphrodisiac that improves libido and may also improve energy.
Sandalwood blends well with: Cypress, Frankincense, Lavender, Lemon, Myrrh

Different oils can be blended together to enhance each other’s energy or can be blended with a base oil to be used for massage, shower gels, or body lotions.

 

The statements on this page have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. It is not our intention to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. It is our recommendation, if trying to get pregnant, pregnant or nursing, that you first seek advice from your health care provider before using any essential oil.

by

Easy Ways to Use Aromatherapy

Topically – essential oils are able to pass through the skin and into the bloodstream and into different areas of the body for internal therapeutic benefits.

Some oils are thought to be gentle enough to use undiluted, but only on certain occasions and very sparingly. Lavender and Tea-Tree are usually safe. Carefully apply a drop of Tea tree essential oil to an acne spot or a wart, or apply a drop of Lavender oil on a mosquito bite to relieve itching. Don’t splash them all over the skin!

For safety, use a carrier oil when applying these powerful oils directly to your skin, and follow the directions of a health care professional.

Carrier oils come from the fatty part of the plant and can help increase the length of time the essential oils stay on your skin. This may prolong the aromatherapy effects. Some people mistakenly think using carrier oils reduces the effectiveness of the oil but really it can be the opposite. Dilution increases the surface area of absorption and with certain oils can prevent sensitivities.

Common carrier oils include:
 Almond oil
 Avocado
 Coconut oil
 Jojoba oil
 Olive oil
 Pomegranate seed oil

To begin, start with a 10% (approximately) solution. This is 10 drops of essential oil mixed with 1 teaspoon of the carrier oil. Once you dilute the essential oil in a carrier oil, the shelf life is about 6 months. Store in the refrigerator in an opaque glass bottle. Be sure to label with the type of oil, the dilution, and the date.

Aromatically – Using a diffuser can help you experience the benefits of essential oils. You can diffuse lavender to reduce stress, wild orange to improve mood, frankincense for spiritual enlightenment, or peppermint to improve focus and energy.

There are a number of different types of diffusers to choose from.
They include:

Candle diffusers are composed of a heat resistant vessel that holds water and essential oils, and a heat resistant platform that holds the vessel over a small candle. These diffusers are simple to use and provide a light background of fragrance. Since they don’t produce a strong concentration, they are best used to enhance the environment.

Electric heat diffusers use small, absorbent pads placed inside a heating chamber. Ventilation allows the aromatic compounds to evaporate into the air. These diffusers are simple to use and require minimal maintenance. Some essential oils are damaged through direct heat.

Cool air nebulizing diffusers use air pressure to vaporize the essential oils. This method maximizes any therapeutic benefits. This type of diffuser needs regular cleaning, and more viscous oils (such as sandalwood or ylang-ylang) cannot be diffused.

by

Essential oils for weight loss

It is common knowledge that in order to lose weight, you must improve your diet and increase your activity level.

But did you know that aromatherapy can help?

Often people who want an extra boost to help them reach their weight loss goals. Unfortunately, many turn to stimulants such as caffeine to help. This results in extra stress on the body, when your body is already stressed by the changes you’re making.

Why not use natural, supportive, and soothing plant-based medicines that reassure the body instead of stress?

When using essential oils for weight loss, you can use them in diffusers. However, with the direction of a health care professional, you may choose to use them internally. All of these oils are generally regarded as safe by the FDA. Still, for best results and safety, choose organic oils and only buy from a trusted source.

These four essential oils have been proven to support fat loss:
Grapefruit oil contains d-limonene, which is found in citrus peels. A study found that supplementing d-limonene improved metabolic enzyme levels. (Published in Basic & Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology Vol. 112, Issue 3, pp 175-181, Mar 2013.)

Add a drop or two to 12 ounces of drinking water and consume before breakfast.
Peppermint oil has been shown to improve weight loss because it suppresses cravings and improves digestion. (Blumenthal M, Goldberg A, Brinckmann J. Herbal Medicine: Expanded Commission E Monographs. Newton, MA: Integrative Medicine Communications; 2000:297-303.)

Add a drop or two to a quart of drinking water or choose enteric-coated capsules to make sure the peppermint oil reaches the bowel.

Cinnamon oil helps balance blood sugar levels, which will assist in weight loss and improve diabetes. (J Diabetes Sci Technol. 2010 May; 4(3): 685–693. Published online 2010 May 1.) Add a drop of cinnamon oil to your steel cut oats (after cooking) for breakfast, use a drop or two in fruit smoothies, even stir into vanilla ice cream!

Ginger oil contains gingerol which has powerful anti-inflammatory properties and increases thermogenesis, which boosts metabolism. (J Basic Clin Physiol Pharmacol; 2015 Jan; 26(1):95-103.)
Ginger juice or grated ginger contain these aromatic and flavorful compounds and can be used to make tea or flavor drinking water. Drink before or after each meal, or anytime you like! Also, use ginger oil diluted in water with a squeeze of lemon.

by

Aromatherapy – How to use it

Herbs Can Cleanse recommends the product line from PlantLife Natural Body Care, and these
products are available on our website. They make it convenient for you to integrate
aromatherapy into your life in the following ways:

Aromatic Baths. Baths are an aromatic and convenient way to begin to experience the benefits
of aromatherapy. PlantLife products are developed using old-world formulas and are
completely free of gluten, GMOs, parabens, SLS sulfates, and artificial colors or dyes. They
contain absolutely no animal products and are cruelty-free. PlantLife only uses 100% pure
essential oils and fresh herbs.

So, experiencing an aromatic bath is as simple as following these steps
Set the mood. Light a candle; play some soft, soothing music; turn your phone off to avoid
interruptions. You may also dim the lights, but be sure to remain safe!
Draw the bath. Check the temperature of the water. Add PlantLife Bath Salts or a few drops of
an essential oil such as lavender, calendula, eucalyptus, or another favorite. (Be careful not to
go overboard.) Have an Aromatherapy Herbal Bar from PlantLife (or your own favorite bar of
high-quality soap) ready.

Soak! Submerge your body in the aromatic bath, and relax. Close your eyes and let yourself
float. Allow the water and fragrance to gently soothe your tired muscles. Imagine the stress of
the day, and all your problems, fading away. When you empty the tub, they can go down the
drain with the water!

Finish with a brief shower. About 15-20 minutes is a good amount of time to experience
relaxation and stress relief. After a bath, many like to finish with a shower to more completely
wash away the stress. Use your favorite bar of soap.

Regular practice of aromatic baths can improve the quality of your life!
Diffusers. This method is ideal for releasing essential oils in the home (including bedroom,
living room, etc.) or office.

There are several types of diffusers. Some, such as candle and electric heat diffusers, use heat
to release the aroma. These are easy to use, but heat may damage some essential oils. The
other main type of diffuser is a cool air nebulizing diffuser. This type uses air pressure to
vaporize the essential oils. The essential oils are released into the air. This type of diffusion
maximizes benefits, but the unit will need to be cleaned regularly and cannot be used with all
oils. Thicker oils, such as sandalwood or ylang-ylang cannot be diffused with this method.
These two methods are the most accessible to those new to the use of aromatherapy. We’ll
discuss other methods in future articles. Send us an email (or comment) with your questions!