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Essential Oils Blog

Home Care & DIYs Archives

Castile Soap DIY’s

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ingredients: Saponified Organic Cocos Nucifera (Coconut Oil), Saponified Organic Otea Europaea (Olive Oil), Saponified Organic Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Oil), Rosemary Extract, Organic Aloe Vera.

 

Now that Plant Therapy has added Castile Soap to our line of products, I went in search of different ways to use it. To my surprise, there are hundreds of uses for it! While I am testing out and tweaking these recipes I thought I would share a few of my favorites.

 

Foaming Hand Soap

Here’s what you ‘ll need:

Here’s what you’ll do:

  1. Add the water to the foaming pump dispenser
  2. Add Castile Soap
  3. Add  Optiphen +
  4. Add essential oil
  5. Replace cap, shake well

 

Multi-Purpose Spray

What you’ll need:

  • 5 ounces water
  • 3 ounces white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Castile Soap
  • 1/2 teaspoon Polysorbate 20
  • 25-30 drops essential oil (I use Germ Destroyer or Germ Fighter in most batches )
  • Spray Bottle

What you’ll do:

  1.  Add all ingredients to the spray bottle and shake well.
  2. Spray and wipe.

 

Body Wash

What you’ll need;

What you’ll do;

  1. Measure all ingredients.
  2. Pour into bottle.
  3. Shake well.
  4. Store in your bathroom and use as you would a traditional body wash.

 

Fruit and Veggie Wash

What you’ll need:

A bowl of cool water (approximately 2 quarts)

5-6 drops Castile Soap

2 drops Lemon Essential Oil

Mix together and that’s it! There is no need to rinse your fruit and veggies, they are ready to go. If you are not using them right away, just drain and store in the fridge.

 

KidSafe Shampoo

What you’ll Need:

4 ounces Castile Soap

1 tablespoon Carrier Oil of choice

4 oz plastic bottle

18 drops of KidSafe Synergy or KidSafe Single Essential Oil of choice.  (Lavender, Tea Tree or Get “Em Gone are great options).

What you’ll do;

  1. Measure ingredients.
  2. Pour into bottle.
  3. Shake well.
  4. Store in your bathroom and use as you would a traditional body wash.

 

Bubbling Bath Salts

What you’ll need:

What you’ll do:

  1. Measure Epsom salt, pour into medium bowl and set aside
  2. Measure 1 TBSP coconut oil, into small dish or beaker, set aside
  3. Measure 2 mL essential oil with graduated cylinder {or drop 40-45 drops}. Pour into coconut oil
  4. Measure body wash
  5. Add carrier/essential oils mixture to the body wash, stirring well. Mixture will turn opaque and thicken slightly as you stir
  6. Add carrier/essential oil/body wash mixture to Epsom salt
  7. Stir well
  8. Package in a container of your choice, but do be sure it’s airtight!

To use, run about 1/4 cup under your warm water as you fill the tub. This is the perfect way to send yourself or your little one, or yourself, off to bed all calm and snuggly!

 

Plant Therapy’s Castile Soap is unscented making it safe for kids and adults alike to use for effective and safe cleaning. This soap is perfect for hand, body, and face washing, as well as for dishes, mopping, and other household chores. This green, nontoxic soap base is perfect because of its many, many uses. We will be sharing more of these many uses with you soon!

 

How do you like to use Castile Soap?

 

 

Top Three Uses For Lavender Infused Vinegar!

In Pregnancy and Nursing Safety – Part 1 we learned that essential oils should only be used sparingly while pregnant and often times it is best to limit oil usage to relieving unpleasant pregnancy symptoms. In Essential Oils and Babies – What the Research Shows we also learned that although not completely restricted, exercising caution with the use of essential oils with babies and small children is paramount.

As an expecting Mom, who wants to lessen the amount of harsh chemicals used in my home, such as chlorine and bleach, these guidelines left me in a bit of a pickle. While I love to use essential oils in homemade cleaning products, I want to limit my growing baby’s exposure both while in the womb and once he arrives. After doing some research, I stumbled upon the wonderful cleaning properties of infused vinegar. Lucky for me, I even had dried lavender on hand to create lavender infused vinegar. I can’t tell you guys how much I love this stuff!

 

 

To create lavender infused vinegar add 1 cup of lavender buds to 3 cups of vinegar. Let the mixture infuse for 2-6 weeks. I went with 4 weeks and it was just perfect!

Here are a few ways I have used it so far:

Surface Cleaner

1 part lavender infused vinegar

2 parts water

Add to a spray bottle, shake well, and get to work! I use this as a cleaner for counters, windows, mirrors, etc.

Fabric Softener

Add ¼ a cup of lavender infused vinegar to your washers final rinse cycle. Not only does this make your laundry smell great but it really softens!

Soothing Bath

Add one tablespoon of lavender infused vinegar to a warm bath to soothe away worries and nourish the skin.

 

If you have children under the age of two and would like to use essential oils in cleaning products, we would encourage you to use them while your little ones are in a different room. Once the area has cleared for 30-60 minutes your babies can return to the area.

For additional DIY cleaning products be sure to check out our blog post The Best Homemade Cleaning Products

DIY DISHWASHER DETERGENT

By: Kimberly Daun, Certified Aromatherapist

I have been hand washing all the dishes for my family of 6 for the last 4 years.  At the end of the month I am very much looking forward to having a dishwasher!  My excitement pales in comparison to that of my boys, especially when they found out that the dishwasher doesn’t just wash but dries as well!  I have a spinning pie wheel that has each of my boys names, and their job with the dishes.  This morning I handed the chart to my 9 year old and asked him to throw it away.  Before I knew it he had gathered his brothers and was doing a ceremonial march to the trash at the curb to officially retire the chart, my 7 year old loudly humming Taps, and an eruption of cheers as they all put it in the trash together.

I went to purchase dishwasher detergent and experienced some sticker shock. When I considered the fact that I would probably need to run it twice a day, I was looking at $20 a month in new expenses.  The worst part was the ingredients – so many dangerous chemicals.  As I started to research a few I found frightening studies on the potential dangers, ranging from eye irritation to cancer.  It made me question the efficiency of the dishwasher at eliminating these chemicals, and if I was willing to risk having chemical residue left on our dishes.  It didn’t take long before I realized I needed a safer alternative.   

Washing Soda: I didn’t have washing soda but quickly found out that by cooking baking soda I could change the chemical makeup into washing soda.  Simply spread ¼ inch on a cookie sheet, bake at 400 degrees stirring every 15 minutes for 45 minutes.  You’ll notice a visible difference, – it will be more course, much like sand.  This is helpful with cleaning and deodorizing.

Borax: This is a natural mineral compound used for thousands of years and is a strong cleaner.  It will help to kill any little germs hoping to hang onto my dishes.

Epsom Salt: I used this for its odor eliminating properties, as well as its texture to help scrub any leftover food.

Lemon Juice: I use lemon juice to clean everything!  The citric acid is disinfecting and the lemon juice smells fabulous.

Clove Bud Essential Oil: This essential oil is used in most of the top germ synergies in the industry.  It is high in Eugenol (mine has 84%) which is a constituent well known for being effective in household cleaning.  Clove is helpful in minimizing seasonal illness and an essential oil I use often in multi purpose cleaner.  

Cinnamon Cassia Essential Oil: This is certainly my favorite aroma of the three essential oils I use in this blend. Studies show that he high level of cinnamaldehyde (high in all cinnamon chemotypes) is very helpful in household cleaning.  

What you’ll need:

  • 8 ounces borax
  • 4 ounces Epsom salt
  • 8 ounces washing soda
  • 4 ounces lemon juice
  • 4 drops Clove Bud essential oil
  • 10 drops Cinnamon Cassia essential oil

 

What you’ll do:

  1. Mix Borax, Epsom Salt, and Washing Soda.
  2. Slowly stir in the lemon juice a teaspoon at a time.
  3. Add essential oils and mix well.
  4. Push firmly into mold.
  5. You can allow to dry for 3 hours or stick them in the oven on 200 for 20 minutes.
  6. Pop out of mold and store.

These have a 6 month shelf life if refrigerated.  Citric acid is a natural, mild preservative, however I tend to err on the side of caution and make these fresh every two weeks. I store them in a cool cupboard. 

 

How do you like to clean with essential oils?  

 

*UPDATE*  I’ve been so pleased with how well recipe has been working.  As a huge bonus I don’t have the residue buildup that my friends do from using store bought detergents.  

 

DIY Vapor Rub

By: Kimberly Daun, Certified Aromatherapist

We have had quite the month of sickness at my house.  First my husband spent 8 days with a cold, then I spent 5 days with it, and now both my 7 and 5 year old’s caught it.  They are coughing, suffering with a need to endlessly blow their noses, and just feeling achy and fatigued.  I typically diffuse for upper respiratory issues however we are in the middle of a move and I  don’t have access to my diffusers.

I remember the relief I got when my mom rubbed vicks on my chest when I was little, instantly helping me breathe a little easier.  Fortunately we are in the days of information, and I know that due to the artificial ingredients and chemicals unsafe for little ones that it isn’t the ideal choice for use with my children. I needed to make a safe alternative!

I’m always searching “how to boost immune system”, to take a multifaceted approach to supporting my kids’ health.  The essential oils I chose are powerful tools if you’re seeking ways to boost your immune system. I wanted to pack as much power in this recipe as possible, carefully choosing each ingredient based on its properties.  My intention was to both, help my sons’ breathe a little easier, and kick this illness as quickly as possible.  I absolutely love that Plant Therapy offers batch specific GC/MS reports so I can choose oils high in the constituents I’m looking for.  The percentages I list are for my bottles of essential oils, and if yours is from a different batch the percentages may vary.  I aimed for something a bit softer and easier to apply than a salve, this is more of an ointment consistency which is exactly what I was hoping for.

Beeswax is so fabulously versatile and I use it in many recipes primarily to harden whatever I’m making (deodorant, salves, chapstick).  For this recipe, it’s especially helpful to help hold the aroma longer than a carrier oil which quickly absorbs into our skin.  It also has vitamin A which nourishes the skin, and supports a healthy immune system.

Solid coconut oil has a high amount of Lauric Acid which is helpful in supporting a healthy immune system.  Due to having a high comedogenic level (can clog pores) I don’t use it in my facial products, even though it is moisturizing, but with application to the chest, I’m not concerned about clogging pores.

Fragonia contains approximately 30% of the chemical constituent 1,8 cineole.  This is one of the essential oils that has a low enough level of 1,8 cineole to be safe for children (under 40%), but still offers the benefits of an essential oil high in this constituent.  1,8 cineole is helpful with clearing congestion, breaking up phlegm, warding off seasonal threats, and shortening the length of an illness. This essential oil is great for helping my sick ones get better faster, helping my healthy ones stay healthy, and offer respiratory support to help them breath with ease.

Rosalina has about 42% of the chemical constituent Linalool.  This constituent helps give your immune system a boost, minimize the perception of pain, and help suppress coughing.  It is also helpful at encouraging a restful sleep by calming both the body and mind.  Their coughing seems to increase at night and has caused some issues sleeping so I’m very grateful to have this essential oil to help my boys sleep peacefully.

Cypress has 50% Alpha-pinene which is helpful in warding off seasonal threats and shortening the length of an illness.  It is also helpful at relaxing the lungs and opening the airways to offer optimal oxygen intake, allowing them to take nice, deep breaths.

 

Vapor Rub

What you’ll need:

What you’ll do:

  1. Over a double boiler melt together the beeswax and coconut oil.
  2. Remove from heat and quickly stir in your essential oils.
  3. Pour into tin.
  4. Allow to cool.
  5. Shelf life of 1 year when stored in a cool and dark place.

*Update:

4 Tablespoons of Beeswax Pellets = 1 weighed ounce

2 Tablespoons of Coconut Oil = 1 weighed ounce

*This statement has not be evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Plant Therapy and it’s representatives are not intending to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Homemade Carpet Cleaner

No matter where we live, winter weather can wreak havoc on our carpets. We track in dirt, snow, slush and everything else we pick up on our shoes and boots. We have had many people ask about using essential oils to remove stains from their carpets, so we brought back this popular post:

My almost 18 month old took his *berry smoothie downstairs without me knowing. A few minutes later I saw his newly bathed tummy covered in berry smoothie! So, I start the search to see where he made the mess. I stumbled upon three spills on my carpet. All in the same area. I grabbed a dry rag and dabbed up as much as I could. I then decided to wait for my Lemon essential oil to come in the mail, I had just ordered it. I knew that Lemon was a natural stain remover and I wanted to try it on this stain (yes that is right, I waited 3 days to remove the berry stain from my carpet so I could test the stain remover recipe I found for you). You are welcome!

Here are the results of my waiting!

beforeafterstain Stains from a distance

beforeaftercloseupstain Close up of stain

The big stain was about 4 in. x 2 in. The smaller two stains were about the size of a quarter. (Yes I was lucky it wasn’t worse. I guess most of the smoothie was on him!) Here’s a great deodorizing carpet powder to try as well!

Homemade Spot Remover

What you will need:

  • 1 tbsp Vinegar (I use white distilled)
  • 2 tbsp Baking Soda
  • 2 drops Lemon essential oil (natural stain remover)

Mix ingredients together to form a past. Then, work the paste into the carpet stain with a rag, sponge, old toothbrush or whatever you want. (always test out on a small area first. All carpets are different)

spotremoveron

Allow the paste to dry; then vacuum up the baking soda, and the stain should be gone. My stain was gone the first time! It took about 20 minutes to dry completely.

Note: Some stains may need to be treated more than once.

This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Plant Therapy and it’s representatives are not intending to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Homemade Gelatin Air Fresheners!

Mmmmmmmmm. These smell divine! In my search for homemade Gift Ideas, I found THIS post about homemade Gelatin Air Fresheners using essential oils! Who would have guessed?! I think they are beautiful, they smell wonderful,  and make the perfect gift for anyone!

What you will need: 

holiday-blends-image

Directions:

Bring one cup of water to a boil in the small saucepan. Add the gelatin. Whisk until smooth and gelatin has dissolved. Once gelatin is dissolved add the salt and second cup of water. Set aside.

Add the essential oils and food coloring to the jar. Dump the gelatin mixture on top and stir. Allow to cool.

gelatin finished

Aren’t these great! They smell so good and I think they are  so cute. I used a large size gelatin to get a texture. I wanted to be able to stir mine when the smell got low. I love the way it turned out.  Nobody would guess that you made these yourself. Plus, they are not full of all of the toxic perfumes!!

This post contains affiliate links which support Africa Heartwood Project. This means they will receive a commission if you make a purchase using these links. To learn more about Africa Heartwood Project click here.

Plant Therapy’s Favorite Recipes and Giveaway #6

Plant Therapy's Holiday Giveaway
Plant Therapy’s Holiday Giveaway

“I call it Heaven!”

By: LeAnna Magee

KidSafe:  Yes

I spent the afternoon yesterday trying to come up with a different idea yesterday. The more I thought about it and cleaned and did laundry. I was thinking that now that the house is all boarded up for the winter I use a lot more of my room sprays as the windows are not open and we do not have the fresh air flowing through the house.

What you’ll need;

What you’ll do;

  1. Combine ingredients and shake well before use.

10 lucky winners will receive all the essential oils to make the master blend.  Includes 10 ml bottles of: Bergamot and Black Pepper!  

Plant Therapy's Favorite Recipes and Giveaway #6

 

 

Plant Therapy’s Favorite Recipes and Giveaway #3

Plant Therapy's Holiday Giveaway
Plant Therapy’s Holiday Giveaway

“Sleigh Ride Under the Stars”   

By: Lori Chase, Certified Aromatherapist

KidSafe:  Yes

Due to allergies and asthma in my family I have not purchased a live tree for several years. I like my house to smell of Christmas without being overpowering. This crisp, woodsy blend creates the feeling of a sleigh ride through the trees on a starry night. I use it to make candles and also sprays to “liven up” artificial trees, wreaths and garlands.  Either one makes a great gift for family and friends!

Master Blend Ingredients;

Candle: What you’ll need;

What you’ll do;

  1. Put wick in the center of the candle holder.
  2. Melt wax completely in a double boiler.
  3. Remove bowl from double boiler.
  4. Add essential oil and mix well.
  5. Slowly pour into candle holder.
  6. Make sure your wick is centered.
  7. Let dry completely.
  8. Light the candle and enjoy!

Liven Up Spray: What you’ll need;

What you’ll do;

  1. Fill the spray bottle almost to the top with witch hazel.  
  2. Add Essential oils and Polysorbate 20 and shake well.  

5 lucky winners will receive all the essential oils to make the master blend.  

Includes 10 ml bottles of: Juniper Berry, Balsam Fir and Spruce

Plant Therapy’s Favorite Recipes and Giveaway #3

The Best Homemade Cleaning Products

By: Kimberly Daun, Certified Aromatherapist

Our noses have such sensitive mucus membranes and it’s important that we treat them gently.  We should be breathing in things that help, and don’t hurt the delicate lining of our nasal passage.  Many traditional cleaners have harsh chemicals that burn the nose, prolonged exposure can damage and even cause you to lose your sense of smell entirely.  There are also many respiratory concerns with using harsh chemicals.  For those reasons I choose to use natural cleaning recipes in my home.  I love cleaning with essential oils because it leaves everything smelling so fabulous!

It’s always a good idea to test a small, inconspicuous spot with new cleaners to ensure there are no undesired results.

Here’s a list of 15 of the best essential oils to destroy germs and maintain a sanitary environment (this is by no means an exhaustive list as many essential oils carry these same benefits);

 

Below you’ll find 6 of my favorite DIY cleaning products.

carpet-mattress-powderCarpet & Mattress Powder

What you’ll need;

To use;

Shake evenly on carpet and/or mattress, let sit for an hour, vacuum thoroughly.

 

dusting-recipe

Dusting Recipe (Adapted from Linda McCarthy)

What you will need;

To use;

Simply spray and wipe, I like using a microfiber cloth.  Since jojoba is a wax it left behind a nice shine and I loved the scent I was left with!

multi-purpose-spray

Multi Purpose Spray (adapted from Michelle Pippin)

What you’ll need;

To use;

Spray and wipe.  I use this on my floors and counters.  I have little ones so I only use Germ Fighter if the room is well ventilated and my kids are gone for several hours.  This recipe also works great for mirrors and windows!

 

soft-scrub

Soft Scrub

What you’ll need;

To use;

Spread the paste, let sit for 5-10 minutes, and scrub away!

 

carpet-stain-remover

Carpet Stain Remover

What you’ll need;

  • 1 ounce baking soda
  • 0.5 ounces vinegar
  • 2 drops essential oil (I really think Lemon is best used here as it does a really great job at cutting through the stain)

To use;

Work paste into stain with toothbrush, allow to dry and vacuum up, may require a couple of treatments.

furniture-polish

Furniture Polish

What you’ll need;

To use;

Use a very small amount and buff furniture with it until you are left with an even shine.  I really love microfiber clothes.  If you have streaks, continue to spread and buff until shiny.  This is probably my favorite recipe, it left my furniture looking so fresh and vibrant, it also left a gentle and uplifting aroma behind that lasted all afternoon.

Concerned about how castile soap mixes with vinegar, water, and hydrogen peroxide?

castile-and-vinegar

*These water based recipes do not contain an emulsifier or preservative.  You will need to shake well before each use (to mix the water and oils or add an emulsifier).  Store in the fridge and use within one week (or add a preservative to reduce concerns of bacterial growth, learn more about preservatives here)*

This post contains affiliate links which support Africa Heartwood Project. This means they will receive a commission if you make a purchase using these links. To learn more about Africa Heartwood Project click here.

 

DIY Outdoor Candles

By: Kimberly Daun, Certified Aromatherapist

I’m loving all of the options using these synergies to create so many fun projects!  With the DIY Outdoor Wipes, DIY Outdoor Spray, and DIY Outdoor Lotion Bars you should be protected like a fortress!

DIY Outdoor Candles

What you’ll need;

What you’ll do;

  1. Put wick in the center of the candle holder.
  2. Melt wax completely in a double boiler.
  3. Remove bowl from double boiler.
  4. Add essential oil and mix well.
  5. Slowly pour into candle holder.
  6. Make sure your wick is centered.
  7. Let dry completely.
  8. Light the candle and enjoy!

 

  • This post contains affiliate links which support Africa Heartwood Project. This means they will receive a commission if you make a purchase using these links. To learn more about Africa Heartwood Project click here.

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