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buy nowrecipesLemongrass Essential Oil

Imagine yourself surrounded by a slender-leafed, tropical grass with a fresh, citrus scent. How does the plant affect you? If you're feeling clean and refreshed, relaxed and renewed, even inspired, it's likely the plant is Cymbopogon citratus, or lemongrass, which has been prized for its aromatic properties since the 1880s when cultivation and distillation began in Kevala, India.

Perfumists find that the fresh, earthy scent of lemongrass blends well with many other essential oils-like eucalyptus, geranium, juniper, lavender and rose. This aroma evaporates quickly, though, making it less valued than more expensive scents like verbena and melissa, for which it's often substituted as a top note. But you'll find it a delightful, affordable addition to homemade perfume blends-and in oil blends for refreshing potpourris, too.

Citral, the primary constituent of the amber/yellow oil, provides a potent and refreshing scent that's popular in household products like detergents, room sprays, and even insecticides. You can refresh the air in a room-and brighten the mood-by placing a few drops of the oil in a light bulb ring or room diffuser.

And, of course, what better place to employ lemongrass' clean, refreshing scent than in body care products? Especially good for oily, acne-prone skin and lackluster hair, lemongrass makes an excellent addition to deodorants, soaps, cosmetics, shampoos, skin lotions and tonics. (Note that while it's nontoxic, lemongrass is a strong oil, so always dilute it well before using it on your skin.) Use it in a massage oil to relieve stress, headaches, and muscular aches and pains. Make your own skin oil or massage oil by mixing lemongrass essential oil with sweet almond or jojoba oil. (Use a few drops of essential oil for about 1/4 cup of base oil.) Enhance your favorite skin care products with a few drops of lemongrass essential oil, or simply stir it into your bath water.

Aromatherapists value lemongrass for its ability to both calm and revitalize, to relieve tension, invigorate, and inspire. The tall tropical grass fills this tall order beautifully.

Lemongrass Recipes:

Spring Fresh Room Spray
Aromatherapists value lemongrass for its ability to both calm and revitalize, to relieve tension, invigorate, and inspire. The tall tropical grass fills this tall order beautifully.

Lemongrass Skin Tonic
Aromatherapists value lemongrass for its ability to both calm and revitalize, to relieve tension, invigorate, and inspire. The tall tropical grass fills this tall order beautifully.

Using Aromatherapy in Your Life

I've heard it said that if you use aromatherapy three or four times a week, you are a serious aromatherapy user. Three or four times a week? I'd suggest using essential oil three or four times a day!

Here are just a few ways you can enjoy the benefits of aromatherapy in personal care: Add 2-4 drops of essential oil to a full bath tub, then swirl to disperse. Or add the essential oils to two tablespoons of vegetable oil or 1/4 cup of milk before mixing in your bath water. Milk is especially soothing for children or those with sensitive skin. My favorite tub oils include clary sage for a balancing and relaxing bath, or grapefruit for a refreshing bath.

* Hair care - Add a couple of drops of essential oils to your unscented shampoos and conditioners. Rosemary brings out the highlights of dark hair, chamomile brings out the highlights in light hair, and sage brings out the highlights in gray hair.
* Facial oils - Mix 2-3 drops of essential oils into 1/4 cup of carrier/vegetable oil.
* Facial sauna - Fill a bowl or sink with very warm water. Add a few drops of essential oil and steam your face by leaning over the water, with a towel draped over your head. Steam for ten minutes. Rinse with warm water, then cool water. Good oils for skin care include lavender, sage, rosemary, chamomile, ylang ylang, rose, lemon and geranium.
* Perfumes - Mix a few drops of oil together and allow scents to coalesce for some time before smelling. When blending oils, remember, less is best. You can always add more oil. Apply the essential oil blend to your hair. Your hair will absorb the scent and the heat of your head will diffuse it.
* Inhalants - Hold an open bottle 2-4 inches from your nose and breathe deeply a few times.
* Massage oils - Add 6 drops of essential oil per ounce of vegetable carrier oil (a 1% dilution).
* Facial masks - Basic ingredients include clay, oatmeal, vegetable oil, and essential oils. Put a few spoonfuls of clay or water-soaked oatmeal in a bowl. Add a teaspoon of vegetable oil and 1-3 drops of essential oils. Stir and add water or herbal tea until the blend is a "toothpaste" consistency. Apply to face with fingertips and let dry 10-15 minutes, then gently remove with warm water.

Q&A:

Q:What is the difference between an essential oil and a fragrance oil?
A: Essential oils are natural products, derived from plants, trees and flowers. Fragrance oils, or perfume oils, are synthetic products developed in a chemical lab. Synthetic oils are not therapeutic, and do not provide an aromatherapy benefit.

Q: How do I know if an aromatherapy product contains pure essential oils and not fragrance oils?
A:
Read the label carefully. If the ingredient list includes the word fragrance, it is not a true aromatherapy product. It will have a scent, but it will not provide the therapeutic benefit. A true aromatherapy product (which contains only pure essential oils) will have both a scent and a therapeutic benefit.

 

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