We often forget nature’s bounty in today’s world; if you take a walk along the aisles of a modern chemist’s you will find so many chemical products that only use synthesised essences to ‘pretend’ to smell nice. However, if you want to take advantage not only of the real fragrances that nature has to offer, but of the beneficial effects of the active ingredients of so many plants, flowers, herbs, fruits, spices and trees; if you want to know what you put on your skin, and you don’t have a PhD in chemistry; if you want to save money with treatments that are both natural and cheap, you should look at essential oils as the answer to many a problem.
Essential oils are very versatile, and can be used to treat your hair as well as your mood; they can be used as vaporisers, as bath and shower soaps, as body scrubs, as steam inhalations, as face packs as well as for massages, finally, and this is what we will be focusing on in this book, essential oils are great to improve the health, look and feel of your hair and scalp; they can even encourage hair growth.
However, remember that you must never ingest essential oils and avoid contact with your eyes and mouth.
If you are new to essential oils, don’t panic; before we start looking at some exceptional and easy to prepare oils, we will look at the basic things you need to know; they are not difficult, but make sure you understand them well: they will be the foundation of all the recipes you will read later in this book.
The first thing you need to decide when you are mixing an essential oil is the effect you want from it. In fact, contrary to what some people think, essential oils have a range of effects, from calming and soothing, from disinfectant to invigorating. You will need to choose the effect that you think is most beneficial for you, thus, you need to know what your hair is like and needs first.
Rosemary, lavender and Atlantic Cedar Wood Scalp Massage Lotion
This lotion has similar properties to the thyme and lavender scalp massage lotion, but it is a bit stronger; it has the added power of being a light scrub, which will help cleanse your follicles, and three active ingredients. It is advisable to use this lotion if you have noticed that, together with the hair loss, your scalp and hair have become a bit more oily than they usually are; this may indicate a food imbalance (often added to stress, don’t we all eat worse when we are stressed?), so your follicles may be clogged up badly. This is sometimes accompanied by a change in the smell of our scalp; this lotion also has a very strong bouquet in order to give our scalp a pleasant long-lasting fragrance.
You will need coconut oil (4 tablespoons or 2 oz or 60 ml), dried grapefruit seeds (2 tablespoons or 1 oz or 30 gr.), rosemary essential oil, lavender essential oil, Atlantic cedar wood essential oil, a pestle, a small jar and a spoon.
Now, follow these easy steps:
- Put the grapefruit seeds in the pestle; you should not use a blender ad you want to break the seeds but keep the strength and integrity of the broken seeds, as they will act as a scrubbing agent.
- Grind the seeds down till they are the size of ground pepper corns.
- Pour the seeds into the jar and add the coconut oil.
- Add 10 drops of lavender essential oil, 10 drops of rosemary essential oil and 10drops of Atlantic cedar wood essential oil.
- Mix well with a spoon.
- Close the jar and put it in a cold, dry place.
How to use the lotion:
- Wash your hair with a lavender or lemon based shampoo, and pat-dry with towel leaving it damp but not wet.
- Dip your fingers in the jar with the lotion and, starting from the back of your head, massage it with a firm but slow circular movement into your scalp; make sure you feel the grains of grapefruit seeds rubbing against your scalp.
- Proceed from the nape all the way up to your forehead, scooping more lotion with your fingers as needed.
- Leave the lotion to rest on your head for about thirty minutes.
- Wash your head with lukewarm water; make sure you wash it well to clear all the
grapefruit seed grains.
- Repeat on a daily basis for at least four weeks.
Lavender and Grapeseed Hair Spray
Having your own essential oil spray to carry with you when you go out is very convenient, as you can put it in your bag and use it anywhere, thus taking care of your hair all day round. The added bonus is that hair sprays are very easy to make. This hair spray will leave your hair incredibly soft to the touch, it will moisturise your hair and, especially if you live in an urban and polluted area, it will make your hair smell nice and fragrant.
You will need a small plastic spray bottle, purified water (2 oz or 60 ml), extra virgin coconut oil (2 tablespoons, or 1 oz or 30 ml), lavender essential oil, grapeseed essential oil and a small funnel.
The procedure is so simple that it will take you only a few minutes:
- Using the funnel, pour the purified water into the bottle.
- Add the extra virgin coconut oil.
- Add 10 drops of lavender essential oil.
- Add 2 drops of grapeseed essential oil.
- Put the spray nozzle onto the bottle.
- Shake well.
Done! Just put it in your bag and go! This spray has no emulsifying agent, so remember to shake it before you use it.