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WILDCRAFTED HERBAL PRODUCTS
Your Natural Skin & Personal Care Solution
Natural Skin Care Newsletter: August 2006 Issue
(You can click on the topics below which will take you to the article of choice on this page, or simply scroll down and read each one)
Cultural Differences in Skin
Shaving Hints and Tips for the Boys
Aromatherapy: The Antiseptic Power of Essential Oils
Medicinal Plant: Eucalyptus
August 2006 Issue of the Natural Skin Care Newsletter
In last month's Newsletter we announced the latest interactive service from Wildcrafted. The launch of our Forum. Well, the forum is up and now starting to walk a little more quickly. Thanks to all of you who have taken the time to visit the forum.
At this stage there are still only a few members and we hope that as the number of members increases so will the number of daily posts. So if you have not joined up yet, please feel free to do so, the more the merrier!
Remember this forum was built for you, so you can ask question, voice opinions and acquire information. We monitor it daily so you won't get any junk and we do not have advertising in the forum. So feel free to look in and participate.
See you there. Click here to go to the Forum
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This month's Newsletter also includes a new section - Kitty's Corner. It is a small column (located on the right hand side of the Newsletter) about natural pet care advice. Yep, Pets too benefit from a natural approach to their care. We hope those of you with pets will enjoy the column and get some useful advice from it each month.
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The world is a big place and there are many different cultures, Europeans, Scandinavians, Asians, Africans, Hispanics and many, many more. Each of these cultures tends to have certain characteristics such as eye colour, hair colour, skin colour, etc,. Inherent with cultural backgrounds is a difference in skin types. For example, western cultures such as the central and northern Europeans have a tendency to fair complexions, hair and eye colour, while southern Europeans dent to have darker hair, brown eyes and darker, olive skin tones.
Asians on the other hand have a yellowish skin tone and can have brown or blue eyes but have mostly dark or black hair. Yes, genetics does have its opinion on how we look. The cultural differences are reflected in the skin and the genetic factors play an important role in how well our skin looks, how ‘tough’ it is and how vulnerable it is to certain skin problems.
For example, cultures that have a tendency to body hair, also have a tendency to oily skin and therefore have a potential problem with blocked secretory glands resulting in pimples and other skin problems. On the other hand, the Irish, who have a tendency to red hair and very fair skin, have less of a problem with oily skin, but they do tend to get burned easily and thus stand a greater risk to skin cancers. Similarly the Scandinavians and other central and northern Europeans and Americans.
Africans and African Americans, have very dark or almost black skin, usually dark or black hair and brown eyes. Genetically, this skin type is less susceptible to the UV rays, although their skin can still get burned.
Below are some generalised characteristics of various skin types from different cultural backgrounds:
Shaving is not everyone's favourite chore and for some it is associated with a feeling of horror. Shaving skin, especially if you have acne, can cause nicks and cuts very easily and the skin ends up looking blotchy and irritated - not a good look. Men's skin is shaven 9000 times over an average life time! So it is very important that men too look after their skin from an early age, to avoid premature aging of the skin. After all, men like to look good too for as long as we can, don't we?
Shaving is a male thing, well for the most part any way. Around the age of 14 is usually the time when beards start to grow and the knife comes out. These days it's a Gillette razor or some other brand. At the same time however, acne spots start to appear and shaving becomes a real challenge. How do you shave around all those pimples?
The most obvious way around it is to use a good quality electric shaver. Usually this resolves the problem of cutting pimples and causing unnecessary pain and injury. However, you will need to follow a good skin care regime to remove the dead skin cells which build up on you skin, in order to promote healthy growth of new skin cells. We'll discuss exfoliation later.
Make sure you use skin care products for sensitive skin when acne pimples are many and inflamed. It's important to get the skin type right too. Dry, normal or oily skin, requires different approaches and in many cases there will be a couple of different skin types in any one individual.
For example, you may have a combination of dry and oily skin, or normal and oily skin. Usually with acne there is a component of oily - the nose and forehead are often oily, while the cheeks and chin areas are either normal or dry. You will need to keep this in mind in order to effectively treat your acne and shave without causing additional problems.
There are some basic principles that all you men should know about their skin and how to best conquer the shaving process.
It sounds easy enough, hey just put some shaving gel on your face and using a razor, take it off again, simple, how hard could it be?
The problem is not that the act of shaving is in itself difficult, it's not, but unfortunately the skin can very much be a problem. If shaving is not done correctly, you could end up looking a bloody mess and have blotchy irritated skin and that is not a good look with which to impress the girls.
To start with, young men, and for that matter even mature men don't realise that the beard hairs grow in different directions. The key is not to shave against the direction of the growth. In order to get a close shave, it is very important that the preparation stage for shaving is done correctly if a close shave is desired. It is even more important if you're suffering from acne and do not want to ad to the irritation.
Shaving against the growth of the hair will give you a closer shave, but you increase the risk of nicks and cuts many fold and if you have acne, this can get rather bloody.
So, here's how to get it right from the start.
Before we start, shave in the shower. This is a must because the warm water will open the facial pores, soften both the stubbles and the skin, and this promotes a better, closer shave. Also, there is much less risk of nicks and cuts if your skin is warmed by the hot water in the shower.
Ok, let's get stated:
Step 1: Use an exfoliant - this gets rid of dead skin cells, which lifts your stubble and gives a closer shave, leafing your skin smooth and looking well groomed.
Wildcrafted's Skin Renewal Gel is perfect for this job, because the herbs and essential oils contained in this product help not only to remove dead skin cells, but also nourishes the skin and provides nutrients the skin can utilise.
Step 2: Prepare the canvas - use the Vitalising Shaving Gel. This product combines pre-shave oiling of the skin and a shaving cream. Not only do you provide lubrication so the razor glides easily over the skin, but the essential oils in this product have antiseptic properties, so you reduce the risk of infections in the event of nicks or cuts from shaving. This helps you to get a smooth shave and the lubricating oils prevent nicks and cuts and will sooth acne rather than irritate it.
Once you have applied the Vitalising Shaving Gel to your face, work it into lather and then start shaving.
Step 3: Shaving - the best razor is one that lets you use a light stroke and you don't need to push down too hard. Gillette's M3 / M4 fits the bill, but there are other's of similar quality. Using a brush to apply the Vitalising Shaving Gel will help lift the bristles and allow you to shave even closer, but your hands will do the job just fine. If you use an electric shaver, it is still to your advantage to shave after you've had a shower, because the skin is warm, softer and the stubble are easier to shave off. Some of the newer electric shavers you can now use under the shower too, so take advantage of that and use the benefits of the hot water.
Step 4: Nicks and cuts? The Vitalising Shaving Gel, which leaves a residue on your skin even after you have finished shaving, contains essential oils which disinfect and help repair the skin. Just leave it on your face while you finish having a shower and then rinse it off.
Step 5: Moisturise. This is a must. After you have finished your shower, apply the Ginseng Hydrator specific for your skin type, remember you may need to use more than one if you have two different skin types. If you have a shiny skin, use the Ginseng Hydrator for Oily skin, if it looks dry and or dull, use the Ginseng Hydrator for Dry skin, else use the one for Normal skin.
Step 6: Restore - once or twice a week, use a natural clay mask to help your skin heal from the taxing process of shaving. The Earth Medicine Facial Clay range contains soothing minerals and oils to calm shaving irritation. It also helps to remove toxins that build up in the skin, especially if you suffer from acne.
If you are using an electric razor, all the steps except for Step 3 still apply. Using an electric razor can cause your skin to be quite itchy and using a moisturiser that sooths the irritated skin is very important.
So there you have it. Shaving can be easy and painless, as long as you follow the steps above, you should not have any trouble getting your stubbles under control. Remember, use the shower to shave, it really does help immensely as well as save you time, and it helps you to do a better job.
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Essential oils are powerful substances and have been used for thousands of years in many different cultures. They are volatile, oily, fragrant substances, which can be obtained from plants in a variety of ways: sometimes by pressing (eg: cloves), sometimes by tapping (laurel, liquid Borneo camphor), sometimes by separation using heat (turpentine), and in some cases by solvents, or by enfleurage (ie: absorption of the perfume by a greasy substance from which it is afterwards separated).
Very often the Essential oils are present in such small quantities in comparison with the mass of the plant, and they adhere so strongly to the plants that contain them, that distillation of the plant is necessary.
Their power comes from their ingredients such as the terpenes and phenols, alcohols and aldehydes. The antigenetic (which means that they combat the development of germs and kill them) potency of essential oils in their vaporized state appears in the following decreasing order: lemon, thyme, orange, bergamot, juniper, clove, citronella, lavender, niaouli, peppermint, rosemary, sandalwood, eucalyptus, Chinese anis. This order corresponds almost exactly with the strength of essential oils studied in respect to their terpenes.
Professor Griffon, Director of the French Police Toxicology Laboratory and member of the Academy of Pharmacy and of the Higher Council for Hygiene, studied the antiseptic effect of a blend of aromatic essences (Essential oils) which included pine, thyme, peppermint, lavender, rosemary, cloves and cinnamon in the bacteriological purification of the air.
The results can be summarized as follows: 15cm from ground-level (where microbic multiplication is most important - much more so than at 60cm, 1 metre and above) the Petri dishes, which had stood open for 24 hours in a room not yet treated with the atomizer, revealed a total of 210 colonies of microscopic flora, of which 12 ere moulds and 8 staphylococci. Even after only 15 minutes the dishes already held more than 62 colonies altogether, including 8 moulds and 6 staphylococci. However, 15 minutes after the room had been treated with the spray of aromatic essences, the open dishes showed a total of only 14 colonies of microbes with 4 moulds and no staphylococci; after 30 minutes the figures were found to be 4, 0, and 0 respectively. In half an hour, therefore, the aromatic essences had destroyed all the moulds and all the staphylococci in the surrounding atmosphere, leaving only 4 microbial colonies out of an original 210 (Valnet, 1980).
>>> More recently, Cornell University describes the effects and uses of the essential oil of Basil to have antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella enteritidis and Escherichia coli, antiseptic activity against Proteus vulgaris, Bacillus subtilis, and Salmonella paratyph, and antifungal activity against Candida albicans, Penicillium notatum, and Microsporeum gyseum.
Oils from some species of Basil have been shown to repel insects and have larvicidal activity against houseflies, blue bottle flies, and mosquitoes. The effective concentration of the oil to kill 90% of the larva ranged from 113-283 ppm. Camphor, d-limonene, myrcene, and thymol are some of the compounds in the oil that may provide the repellent properties. Eugenol and methylchavicol may be responsible for the larvicidal activity.
There are other reports and studies on the antiseptic effects of essential oils, however, there is not need to restate the obvious.
The key message is that most if not all essential oils have powerful antiseptic properties, they are relatively safe to use, when used appropriately, and they are totally natural. The added bonus is they also smell nice and provide a pleasant atmosphere.
The list of essential oils above, in decreasing order of antiseptic strength, can be applied in your household with relative ease. There are just a couple of things to be aware of: 1) Always use 100% pure essential oils. You do not what synthetic essential oils or dilutions; you want to purchase the pure essential oil. If you wish, you can dilute it yourself later. 2) Keep the essential oils away from children. They are potent substances and if not handled with care, they can cause harm. For example peppermint, wintergreen and other similarly potent oils will burn your skin if you applied directly onto your skin.
If you are not sure how to use essential oils, don’t be afraid to ask someone who does know and can provide you with advice and guidance.
Botanical Name: Eucalyptus globulus
Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus) is a tall evergreen tree native to Australia and Tasmania. Today, most commercial herbal preparations originate in Mediterranean and subtropical regions, including Spain and Morocco. The leaves and oil of the eucalyptus plant are used for medicinal purposes. Eucalyptus oil consists of the volatile oil distilled from the fresh leaves and branch tops of the eucalyptus plant.
Topical ointments containing eucalyptus oil have been used in traditional Aboriginal medicines to heal wounds and fungal infections. Teas containing eucalyptus leaves were also used to reduce fevers. The therapeutic uses of eucalyptus soon spread to other traditional medicine systems, including Chinese, Indian Ayurvedic, and Greco-European.
Throughout the 19th century in England, eucalyptus oil was used in hospitals to clean urinary catheters. Laboratory studies later revealed that eucalyptus oil contains substances with strong antibacterial properties. Studies in animals and test tubes also found that eucalyptus oil acts as an expectorant (loosens phlegm in the respiratory passages), antiseptic (prevents infection), and deodorant.
Like eucalyptus oil, the leaves of the eucalyptus plant contain substances that have expectorant, antibacterial, and antiseptic properties, but the leaves are also believed to help reduce inflammation and reduce fevers. In fact, one study conducted in Russia found that an alcoholic tincture containing eucalyptus leaves helps relieve chronic ear infections. Many researchers believe that the beneficial effect of the eucalyptus tincture may have been due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
In addition, eucalyptus has been used traditionally for diabetes. A few animal studies suggests that this folkloric use may prove to have scientific merit. Mice with experimentally-induced diabetes respond to aqueous extracts of eucalyptus by increasing insulin production and reducing blood sugar. These results suggest that it would be worthwhile to study eucalyptus as an adjunctive treatment for diabetes further. Much more research is needed before it is clear how this may apply to people with diabetes.
Today, eucalyptus is commonly used in remedies to treat coughs and the common cold. It can be found in many lozenges, cough syrups, and vapor baths throughout the United States and Europe. Herbalists recommend the use of fresh leaves in teas and gargles to soothe sore throats and treat bronchitis and sinusitis. Ointments containing eucalyptus leaves are also applied to the nose and chest to relieve congestion. Eucalyptus oil helps loosen phlegm, so many herbal practitioners recommend inhaling eucalyptus vapors to help treat bronchitis, coughs, and the flu.
Because eucalyptus has such a sharp, pungent aroma, some aromatherapists recommend using it like smelling salts to revive someone who has fainted. Generally, most aromatherapists suggest placing a drop or two of eucalyptus oil on a cloth and holding it under the nose of the individual who has fainted. Eucalyptus oil is also rich in cineole (a potent antiseptic that kills bacteria responsible for bad breath), so some professional herbalists may also recommend eucalyptus tinctures to treat bad breath.
Eucalyptus is native to Australia, where it is the primary food in the diet of koala bears. Today, eucalyptus is grown in Mediterranean and subtropical regions around the world. There are many species of eucalyptus. Some are the size of an ornamental shrub, and some grow to be giant trees. The type of eucalyptus that is most often used medicinally is called blue gum or Australian fever tree. It can grow as high as 230 feet. Its 4- to 12-inch leaves are dark green and shiny. Its blue-gray bark peels to reveal a cream-colored inner bark.
What's It Made Of?
Eucalyptus leaves contain tannins (which are believed to help reduce inflammation), flavonoids (such as quercetin which has antioxidants properties), and volatile oils.
Eucalyptus oil is available in liquids or ointments and the leaves of the eucalyptus plant are available fresh, dried (to be used in tea), and in tinctures (solution made from herb and alcohol, or herb, alcohol, and water). Commercial cough drops, syrups, vaporizer fluid, liniments, toothpaste, and mouthwash may contain eucalyptus oil or its active ingredient, cineole.
How to Take It
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We hope you enjoyed these articles and invite you to send us suggestions of topics you would like to see us cover in the coming months. Your suggestions are always welcome and we endeavour to cover the topics you would like to know more about - so don't be shy, drop us a line or two!
Also we look forward to 'seeing' you in the Forum.
In good health
Danny & Susan Siegenthaler
© Copyright: Wildcrafted Herbal Products, 2006
Hi I'm Kitty and I'll be giving you some advice, hints and tips on what your cat and those other four legged human friends, you call them dogs, like and dislike.
I'll be miauing about herbs, essential oils and other goodies that will help your pet get over their minor health challenges.
If you have any questions just send me an email and I'll give it a shot.
To start with I thought I'll miau about Cat Flu, as one of my good mates died from it not so long ago.
Cat flu is usually caused by viruses that attack the upper respiratory
system. It may be followed by infection of the lungs and
* Less serious symptoms usually result from infection by feline chlamydia, a microbe that is intermediate in structure between a bacterium and a virus - can be treated successfully by means of tetracycline antibiotics.
* Some cats, while showing no signs of disease, may become carriers after contracting feline herpes virus (FHV).
WHAT YOUR VET CAN DO
* Antibiotics are often prescribed to reduce the chances of a secondary bacterial infection developing. The vet will explain how they are to be given, usually orally. Good nursing care is important to keep your cat comfortable, so your vet will probably advise you to bathe its eyes regularly to stop them becoming gummed up and to wipe its nose frequently. Take care to dispose of used tissues and cotton balls and wash your hands well afterward.
That's it from me for this month. I hope the information will help some of you provide a little comfort to your cat. Make sure you talk to your vet before you start giving your pets any medicinal substances; after all you want to do the right thing...
So Miau from me until next month.
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Ginseng Hydrator & After Shave Balm
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Rose Day Cream
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Look Younger & Feel Younger with Wildcrafted's Age-Defying Essence
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Look Younger & Feel Younger with Wildcrafted's Age-Defying Essence
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It's a Guy Thing?
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