Natural Skin Care Newsletter - October 2005

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Natural Skin Care Newsletter: October 2005 Issue

Natural Skin Care Products by Wildcrafted Herbal Products

Natural skin care products by Wildcrafted Herbal Products Natural skin care products by Wildcrafted Herbal Products

Introduction

Welcome to the October issue of the Natural Skin Care Newsletter. Again this month we've included several articles on a variety of topics for you in the hope that you'll find something of interest. Remember, we value your feedback and suggestions for future topics so don't be shy and drop us a line or two.

This month we have focused on the medicinal plant Aloe Vera and included some views of its value as seen by scientists. It truly is a remarkable plant and should not be forgotten. Aloe vera is a very important plant in skin care and can be used for many different things. It's value in treating burns is remarkable and we have written a lengthy article on what happens when you get burned and how to manage the different degrees of burns.

 

Index of the October Issue of the Natural Skin Care Newsletter:

(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)

Articles:
You've burned your self - now what?
(by Danny & Susan Siegenthaler)

Herb of the month: Aloe Vera

A Scientific Look at Aloe Vera
(by various scientists )

October Issue of the Natural Skin Care Newsletter

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Articles




You’ve Burned Yourself – Now what?

When the skin is exposed to excessive heat, as from fire, electricity, or corrosive chemicals, the resulting tissue damage is known as a burn. Burns are generally categorized three degrees of severity indicated by the degree of tissue damage:

  • First-degree burns: affect only the outer layer of the skin (epidermis), causing pain and redness.
  • Second-degree burns: extend to the layer below the epidermis (the dermis), causing pain, redness, and blisters that may ooze liquid.
  • Third-degree burns: involve all layers of the skin and may also damage the underlying tissues and structures such as bones, muscles, and tendons. The burn site appears pale, charred, or leathery and there is generally no sensation in the area because the nerve endings are destroyed.

All burns even minor ones, may cause functional or cosmetic damage to your skin if they are not properly cared for and treated. Healthy undamaged skin is a natural barrier to infection and forms part of your immune system, so when your skin is burned you loses that protection. When you get burned, you become very prone to developing infections.

Signs and Symptoms

In general, signs and symptoms of burns differ according to the severity of the burn (as described above). Evaluation of the extent of the burn (that is, the amount of skin or body surface area that the burn covers) is important, because it helps a healthcare practitioner assess the risk for such complications as infection, dehydration, and/or disfigurement.

Infection

Getting burned exposes you to a high probability of infection. Unfortunately, establishing whether an infection is present or not is often difficult because the skin surrounding a burn is usually red, which is a sign of infection. This is also a normal response to a large or deep burn. Signs of infection may include:

  • Change in colour of the burned area or surrounding skin
  • Purplish discoloration, particularly if swelling is also present
  • Change in thickness of the burn (the burn suddenly extends deep into the skin)
  • Greenish discharge or pus
  • Fever

Dehydration

A burn injury can lead to loss of fluid through the skin. If dehydration is severe, intravenous fluids may be necessary. Signs of dehydration may include:

  • Thirst
  • Dry mouth
  • Light-headedness or dizziness, particularly when moving from sitting or lying position to standing
  • Weakness
  • Dry skin
  • Urinating less often than usual and may be dark in colour.

Diagnosis

When diagnosing a burn, a healthcare practitioner will evaluate the degree (1st, 2nd or 3rd degree burn), depth and extent of the damage, the degree of pain, the amount of swelling, and signs of infection. They will classify the burn based on the depth and extent of the injury.

Appropriate treatment for burns depends on the extent of the tissue damage, the cause of the burn, and whether or not infection is present. All burns (with the exception of mild, first-degree burns) require immediate medical attention because of the risk of infection, dehydration, and other potentially serious complications.

The following steps may be taken:

First-degree burns:

These burns are red, moist, swollen, and painful. The burned area whitens (blanches) when lightly touched but does not develop blisters.

  • Run cool water on burned area for 5 to 10 minutes or cover the area with a cool compress
  • Use undiluted, 100% pure essential oil of Lavender directly on the burn and surrounding area
  • After using Lavender, apply Aloe Vera gel to the burned area
  • Repeat as necessary

Second-degree burns:

This level of burn injury is red, swollen, and painful, and they develop blisters that may ooze a clear fluid. The burned area may blanch when touched.

  • Do not break blisters
  • Do not remove clothing that is stuck to the skin
  • Run cool water on burned area for 5 to 10 minutes or cover the area with a cool compress then carefully remove clothing
  • Elevate burned area above the heart
  • Use neat, 100% pure essential oil of Lavender on the burn
  • Apply Aloe Vera gel to the burned area

If the burned area is large and there is severe pain

  • Take ibuprofen or acetaminophen to relieve pain and swelling
  • Emergency medical attention may be necessary

Third-degree burns: This is a medical emergency

Third-degree burns usually are not painful because the nerves have been destroyed. The skin becomes leathery and may be white, black, or bright red. The burned area does not blanch when touched, and hairs can easily be pulled from their roots without pain. No blisters develop. The appearance and symptoms of deep burns can worsen during the first hours or even days after the burn.

  • Call an ambulance immediately.
  • Check airway, breathing, and circulation – provide first aid if necessary.
  • Do not remove clothing that is stuck to the skin
  • Run cool water continuously on burned area
  • Elevate burned area above the heart
  • Use neat, 100% pure essential oil of Lavender on the burn often

Herbs that are useful in treating burns

Aloe (Aloe vera)

Aloe vera has been used for centuries to heal skin lesions, burns and wounds. Aloe contains glycoproteins, protein-carbohydrate compounds that promote the healing process by stopping pain and inflammation, and polysaccharides, a type of carbohydrate that stimulates skin growth and repair.

In one study conducted in Thailand in 1995, 27 people admitted to a hospital for first- and second-degree burns had one half of their burn treated with Aloe vera gel and the other half treated with petroleum jelly (the standard orthodox treatment for burns). The area treated with Aloe vera healed significantly faster than the area treated with petroleum jelly, although there were some reports of discomfort and brief pain with the Aloe vera gel treatments.

Lavender oil (Lavandula officinalis)

The 100% pure therapeutic grade essential oil of lavender is one of the only essential oils that can safely be applied to the skin without diluting it. Applying lavender oil will take the sting out of the burn, and heal it quickly.

Aloe-Lavender Smoothie

  • In a 150-200ml (6-8 ounce) glass jar mix together 120ml (4 ounces) Aloe vera gel (fresh from the plant or purchased in the health food store), ½ teaspoon (3ml) essential oil of lavender, one teaspoon (5ml) apple cider vinegar, and the contents of two 400IU capsules Vitamin E (puncture the Vitamin E capsules with a straight pin to release the contents).
  • Tighten a cap onto the jar and shake to blend ingredients.
  • This mixture may be gently patted on the affected area and reapplied as often as needed for relief of the sunburn’s heat and inflammation.
  • For increased cooling benefit and freshness, keep the mixture refrigerated.

One more suggestion, eating sweet potatoes will make your skin less likely to burn! A small sweet potato contains more than twice the daily need for beta carotene which helps to reduce the redness and inflammation of a sunburn. “Beta carotene accumulates in the skin, providing partial protection for 24 hours against sun damage”, says University of Arizona’s school of public health professor, Ronald Watson, PhD.

Honey

In some traditional medical practices, honey is applied to the skin to prevent infection and heal wounds. Results from two well-designed studies conducted in India suggest that topical applications of honey may heal burns significantly faster than the anti-microbial ointment, silver sulfadiazine. Some researchers attribute this effect to nutrients in honey that promote skin growth and to antibacterial substances present in honey.

Papaya (Carica papaya)

In The Gambia, Africa, papaya is used topically to help remove dead tissue from burn wounds and prevent infection. Although the exact mechanism of action is unclear, researchers suggest that papaya contains enzymes that break down the proteins in dead tissue. In addition, papaya is believed to have anti-microbial properties.

Other Herbs

Although some herbs used historically have not been researched scientifically, they may be considered by an herbal specialist to treat first-degree burns. Each of the following remedies would be applied topically.

  • Slippery elm (Ulmus fulva)
  • St. John's wort (Hypericum perforatum)
  • Roman chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile)
  • Walnut leaf (Juglans reglia)
  • Gotu kola (Centella asiatica)
  • Horsetail (Equisetum arvense)
  • Milk thistle (Silybum marianum)
  • Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica)

Burns are often accompanied by pain and anxiety, even during recovery. A person may also experience emotional distress if a burn alters his or her appearance. Complementary therapies that may help a person alleviate such pain and anxiety include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Aromatherapy
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Hypnosis
  • Massage therapy
  • Therapeutic touch

Proper nutrition is particularly important during the recovery phase, as certain vitamins and minerals have been shown to promote wound healing and prevent the spread of infection.

When skin is burned, a substantial percentage of micronutrients, such as copper, selenium, and zinc may be lost. This increases the risk for infection, slows the healing process, prolongs the hospital stay, and even increases the risk of death. Although it is unclear which micronutrients are most beneficial for people with burns, many studies suggest that a multivitamin including the following nutrients may aid in the recovery process:

  • Vitamin B complex
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin A
  • Arginine
  • Glutamine
  • Copper
  • Selenium
  • Zinc

In addition, vitamin K levels tend to be low following a burn. However, it is not known whether additional supplementation of this vitamin will help under these circumstances.

Antioxidants

Oxidative stress (injury to cells caused by free radicals, which are substances in the blood that result from normal metabolic processes in the body) is believed to contribute significantly to skin and soft tissue damage incurred from a burn.

In addition, levels of several antioxidants (substances that protect against the cell damage of free radicals) are measurably lower in burn victims, including beta-carotene, and vitamins A, C, and E. For this reason, antioxidant therapy using, for example, vitamins C and E and carotenoids, is often part of the treatment of burns, particularly soon after the injury takes place. The precise amount and combination to use, however, is not entirely clear.

While there is some evidence that vitamins C and E, both taken orally, work particularly well together in preventing sunburn, it is not clear whether this benefit would be the same for treatment of burns of any cause once they have occurred.

In addition, although it is popular during the time of recovery from a burn to use topical vitamin E to try to diminish scar formation, one study found no cosmetic benefit when using topical vitamin E for surgical wounds.

Essential Fatty Acids

Essential fatty acids (fatty acids that the body does not make and must, therefore, be obtained through the diet) have been used to reduce inflammation and promote wound healing in burn victims. Animal research indicates that omega-3 fatty acids (one class of essential fatty acids) help promote a healthy balance of proteins in the body—protein balance is critical to proper organ function and general health, particularly after sustaining a burn. Further research is necessary to determine whether essential fatty acids have similar effects on protein balance in people who have suffered a burn.

Bromelain

Bromelain, a collection of protein-digesting enzymes found in the stem of pineapple plants, has been used historically to reduce swelling following soft tissue damage. Some studies of animals indicate that bromelain (applied topically) may also be useful in removing dead tissue from third-degree burns. This has not yet been tested on humans.

Supporting Research

Alexander. Influence of EPA and DHA intravenous fat emulsions on nitrogen retention. Nutrition. 1999;15(2):161-162.

Antoon AY, Donovan DK. Burn Injuries. In: Behrman RE, Kliegman RM, Jenson HB, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. Philadelphia, Pa: W.B. Saunders Company; 2000:287-294.

Baumann L, Spencer J. The effects of topical vitamin E on the cosmetic appearance of scars. Dermatol Surg. 1999;25:311-315.

Berger M, Spertini F, Shenkin A, et al. Trace element supplementation modulates pulmonary infection rates after major burns: a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 1998;68:365-371.

Cummings S, Ullman D. Everybody's Guide to Homeopathic Medicines. 3rd ed. New York, NY: Penguin Putnam; 1997: 295.

De-Souza DA, Greene LJ. Pharmacological nutrition after burn injury. J Nutr. 1998;128:797-803.

Faoagali J, George N, Leditschke JF. Does tea tree oil have a place in the topical treatment of burns? Burns. 1997;23(4):349-351.

Field T, Peck M, Hernandez-Reif M, Krugman S, Burman I, Ozment-Schenck L. Postburn itching, pain, and psychological symptoms are reduced with massage therapy. J Burn Care Rehabil. 2000;21:189-193.

Field T, Peck M, Krugman S, et al. Burn injuries benefit from massage therapy. J Burn Care Rehabil. 1998;19(3):241-244.

Gilboa D, Boenstein A, Seidman DS, Tsur H. Burn patients' use of autohypnosis: making a painful experience bearable. Burns. 1990;16(6):441-444.

Hayashi N, Tsuguhiko T, Yamamori H, et al. Effect of intravenous w-6 and w-3 fat emulsions on nitrogen retention and protein kinetics in burned rats. Nutrition. 1999;15(2):135-139.

Jenkins ME, Gottschlich MM, Kopcha R, Khoury J, Warden GD. A prospective analysis of serum vitamin K in severely burned pediatric patients. J Burn Care Rehabil.1998;19(1 Pt 1):75-81; discussion 73-74.

Jonas WB, Jacobs J. Healing with Homeopathy: The Doctor's Guide. New York, NY: Warner Books;1996:143-145.

Lewis SM, Clelland JA, Knowles CJ, Jackson JR, Dimick AR. Effects of auricular acupuncture-like transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation on pain levels following wound care in patients with burns: a pilot study. J Burn Care Rehabil. 1990;11:322-329.

Madoff L. Infections from bites, scratches, and burns. In: Fauci A, Braunwald E, Isselbacher KJ et al, eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 14th ed. New York, NY: The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.; 1998:838-839.

Meyer NA, Muller MJ, Herndon DN. Nutrient support of the healing wound. New Horizons. 1994;2(2):202-214.

Patterson DR, Adcock RJ, Bombardier CH. Factors predicting hypnotic analgesia in clinical burn pain. Int J Clin Exp Hypn. 1997;XLV(4):377-395.

Somboonwong J, Jariyapongskul A, Thanamittramanee S, Patumraj S. Therapeutic effects of Aloe vera on cutaneous microcirculation and wound healing in second degree burn model in rats. J Med Assoc Thai. 2000;83:417-425.

Starley IF, Mohammed P, Schneider G, Bickler SW. The treatment of pediatric burns using topical papaya. Burns. 1999;25:636-639.

Subrahmanyan M. A prospective randomized clinical and histological study of superficial burn wound healing with honey and silver sulfadiazine. Burns. 1998;24:157-161.

Subrahmanyam M. Topical application of honey in treatment of burns. Br J Surg. 1991;78:497-498.

Taussig SJ, Batkin S. Bromelain, the enzyme complex of pineapple (Ananas comosus) and its clinical application. An update. J Ethnopharmacol. 1988;22:191-203.

Turner JG, Clark AJ, Gauthier DK, Williams M. The effect of therapeutic touch on pain and anxiety in burn patients. J Adv Nurs. 1998;28(1):10-20.

Tyler VE. Herbs of Choice: The Therapeutic Use of Phytomedicinals. Binghamton, NY: Pharmaceutical Products Press; 1994.

Ullman D. Homeopathic Medicine for Children and Infants. New York, NY: Penguin Putnam; 1992.

Ullman D. The Consumer's Guide to Homeopathy. New York, NY: Penguin Putnam; 1995:334.

Visuthikosol V, Sukwanarat Y, Chowchuen B, Sriurairatana S, Boonpucknavig V. Effect of Aloe vera gel to healing of burn wound a clinical and histologic study. J Med Assoc Thai. 1995:78(8):402-408.

Wright BR, Drummond PD. Rapid induction analgesia for the alleviation of procedural pain during burn care. Burns. 2000;26:275-282.

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Herb of the month: Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera

Biological Name(s):
Aloe barbadensis
Aloe Indica
Aloe Barbados
Aloe Vera

Lily family, Liliaceae

Other Names:
Aloe, Aloe Vera, Indian Alces, Kumari, Ghirita, Gawarpaltra, Barbados aloe, Curacao aloe, Lu hui

Parts Used:
Leaf gel and sap. Aloin Extract, dried juice of leaves and pulp root

Active Compounds:
Aloin, obtained from the gel in the leaf. Responsible for the plant's healing properties.
The aloe gel contains over 75 nutrients and 200 active compounds, including 20 minerals, 18 amino acids, and 12 vitamins.


Traditional Applications in Herbal Medicine:
Alterative, bitter tonic, rejuvenative, emmenagogue, purgative, emollient, vulnerary.

When applied externally, aloe vera restores skin tissues and may aid the healing of burns and sores. It can also be used on blemishes and dandruff. Used cosmetically, Aloe vera softens the skin.

Aloe vera is also taken internally for stomach disorders. Dried aloe latex, a substance derived from the leaf, is a strong laxative. Modern doctors have used aloe for x-ray burns, sunburn, chemical burns, first degree burns, traumatized tissue, decibitus ulcers or bedsores, skin inflammation, stomach ulcers, herpes simplex, periodontal surgery, insect bites and stings, irritating plant stings, and other minor skin manifestations.

Aloe had shown outstanding results in treating facial edema (swelling). When used as a mouth rinse, it was effective for cold spores and lockjaw.

Other Applications in Herbal Medicine

  • Use of the fresh gel is the only certain way to get the desired effects with maximum activity.
  • Considered analgesic, anaesthetic, antibacterial.
  • Clear inner gel of leaves is used externally as skin healer, moisturizer and skin softener ; also for cuts, burns, insect bites and stings , bruises, acne, blemishes, welts, ulcerated skin conditions, eczema, sunburns, radiation burns, haemorrhoids, rectal itching, abrasions, psoriasis, ringworm, scar tissue, tumours, vaginitis, worms.
  • Used for poison ivy (not as good as other remedies).
  • Used after radiation treatment to minimize damage to skin.
  • Useful for stomach disorders, ulcers, constipation, colitis, colon problems, infections, varicose veins, skin cancer, arthritis, anaemia, fever, hair (to stimulate growth), heartburn, hiatal hernia, liver problems, menopause, obesity, tapeworm, TB, throat problems.
  • Used as immune stimulant in extract form.
  • Gel may be helpful following frostbite as it may inhibit bradykinin (a pain producing agent) and hinder formation of thromboxane (substance detrimental to would healing in burns).
  • Tissue restorative.
  • Used for skin cancer.
  • Used in eye wash preparations. Experiments in eye drops being conducted to see if there is protection against ultra-violet sun rays.
Considered to be of benefit in the treatment of:
amenorrhea gonorrhoea sore throat
asthma heart pain spleen, enlarged
inflamed or diseased breasts haemorrhoids TB and other lung diseases
burns hepatitis toothache
bursitis herpes tumours
colds infant pneumonia ulcers, chronic
colic insomnia vaginitis
conjunctivitis Intestinal worms venereal diseases
constipation jaundice
coughs kidney disorders
dys-menorrhea enlarged liver
dysentery with bloody stools menopause
ear infections rheumatism
eye problems skin inflammations
fat and sugar metabolism skin rashes
fever sores

Dosage:
Aloe vera comes in a number of forms: natural gel, prepared ointment, salve or lotion, liquid drink concentrate and encapsulated powder.

Can be used externally or taken internally depending on conditions.

For minor cuts and inflammation, apply the gel from the leaf directly on the wound. For larger inflammations etc. use a concentrated ointment, salve or lotion. For internal use, aloe comes as a drink concentrate. Dilute it to 1 oz = 1 quart prior to consuming.

 

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The International Aloe Science Council - Scientific Research

Univera Research Focuses On Chromones

By Dr. Qi Jia
Univera Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

In recent years, Aloe vera and related products have drawn a great attention from cosmetic, nutroceutical and pharmaceutical industries. Aloe vera gel, which is generated in the mucilaginous cells of the inter central zone of the leaf, has been very well documented for its wound-healing (1), anti-inflammatory (2,3) and immune-stimulatory (4) activities. However, the small organic compounds, which predominantly exist in the pericyclic cells underneath the leaf skin, have been ignored as impurities due to their colour and gastrointestinal irritation. Because of low gel production or lack of understanding of chemistry and pharmacology, only a handful of aloe species out of more than 300 total breeds are commercially utilized.

Decades of scientific studies on Aloe chromones reveal hundreds of structures with anti-inflammation (5), anti-ulcer (6), tyrosinase inhibition (7), skin protection (8), laxative effect (9) and other biological activities. Analyses of aloe chromones in different aloe species also have been reported (10,11).

The scientific investigation conducted in UPI is to discover new chemicals with anti-inflammation and other therapeutic potentials, to fully utilize natural aloe materials, and to explore new usage for diversified Aloe species.

Five representative compounds were isolated as QC and biological study standards from three different species of Aloe by using preparative HPLC, CCC and other routine chromatography methods: Aloesin (I), Aloeresin A (II), and Barbaloin (IV) from dried latex of the leaves of A. ferox, Aloenin (III) from dried whole leaves of A. arborescens and Aloeresin E (V) from the dry rind of A. The purity and chemical structures of the chromones were confirmed by HPLC and spectroscopic methods.

Thirty five Aloe plants were harvested from Koniff Nursery. Fresh collected aloe leaves were chopped to small pieces and freeze-dried. The dry leaves were ground and extracted by following the standard extraction protocol. The chromone contents in the methanol extracts were analysed with HPLC. In-vitro anti-inflammatory assays are conducted on the alcohol and aqueous extracts. The bioassay results and phytochemical studies of representative aloe species will be discussed in detail.

The manufacturing process of bioactive chromones from different aloe species has been developed efficiently and economically in UPI. Large-scale isolation of anti-inflammatory minor component - Aloeresin E is one of the examples (12). The pilot scale process started with extraction of 22.4 kg of Aloe vera dry rind. The exclusive technology in UPI allowed 20-fold enrichment of Aloeresin E from crude extract. A simple filtration followed by solvent partition further removed 75% of remaining impurities. After column chromatography, the compound reached supreme purity.

In conclusion, Aloe chromones are important bioactive components in natural sources. A comprehensive study could introduce new raw materials for manufacturing of bioactive chromones, could reveal a unique chemical content for further investigation, and could lead the discovery of new therapeutic agents with bioassay directed isolation. Consequently, it would convey more understanding and appreciation of the natural wonder-Aloe.

References
1. D. Grindlay and T. Reynolds, J. Ethnopharmacology, 16, 117 (1986).
2. R. H. Davis, M.G. Leitner, J.M. Russo, and M.E. Byrne, J. Amer. Podiatric Med. Assoc. 79, 263 (1989).
3. S.L. Udupa, A.L. Udapa, and D.R. Kulkarni, Fitoerapia. LXV, 141 (1994).
4. D. Womble and J.H. Helderman, Int. J. Immunopharmac., 10, 967 (1988).
5. J.A. Hutter, M. Salman, W.B. Stavinoha, N. Satangi, R.F. Williams, R.T. Streeper, and S.T. Weintraub, J. Nat. Prod., 59, 541 (1996).
6. T. Hirata and T. Suga, Bull. Chem. Soc. Jap., 51, 842, (1978).
7. N. Okamura, N. Hine, S. Harada, T. Fujioka, K. Mihashi, and A. Yagi, Phytochem. 43, 495 (1996).
8. J.F. Grollier, G. Lang, S. Gratien, S. Forestier, G. Rosenbaum, US 4,656,029, (1987).
9. M. Hottori, T. Akao, K. Kobashi, T. Namba, Pharmacology, 47, S125, (1993).
10. N. Okamura, M. Asai, N. Hine, and A. Yagi, J. Chromatography, 746, 225 (1996).
11. T. Reynolds, Botanical J. Linnean Soc. 90, 179, (1985).
12. T. Waller, Q. Jia, A. Padmapriya, Filed on March 21, 1996 for United States Letters Patent, Application Serial No. 08/621,178.

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We hope you've enjoyed this month's issue of the Natural Skin Care Newsletter

In good health

Danny & Susan Siegenthaler

 

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WILDCRAFTED HERBAL PRODUCTS
ABN 97 131 307 643

P.O. Box 111
Kurmond, NSW, 2757
Australia

email: Contact
phone: +61 2 4573 0784 - international
phone: (02) 4573 0784 - within Australia

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Wildcrafted's Natural Skin Care Products are Your Natural Skin Care Solution

© Copyright: 2004 - 2013, Wildcrafted Herbal Products Pty Ltd. All rights reserved worldwide