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    Balancing Geranium & Lemon Verbena Hydrating Mist

    Although I use the mists through the cooler months too, the warmer weather is when these refreshing and uplifting sprays really come into their own. Made from organic plant hydrosols, they are ideal for adding hydration to the skin and restoring pH balance as well as nurturing the skin (and our whole selves) with the benefits of the individual plants. What is a hydrosol? Originally considered just a by-product of making steam distilled essential oils, this condensed steam, now rich in properties from the plant material is a stunning ingredient in its own right. In fact, this magical water contains both the oil and water-soluble parts of a plant, not just the oil soluble parts found in essential oils. Hydrosols are also incredibly gentle on...

    Camellia (tea) oil – a quiet but beautiful plant oil for the face.

    Last month my Pomegranate & Lemon Nourishing Facial Oil came in 2nd place in the Cert Clean Beauty Awards (face oil category). It is so great to have this formula recognized as having not only clean ingredients but also great results. I have written about the pomegranate oil and steam-distilled lemon oil I use in this formula before, now it’s the turn of the main ingredient (by volume) Camellia oil. Camellia Oleifera seed oil comes from the wonderful tea plant, indigenous to China. And it was the flawless geishas who made this beautiful oil famous centuries ago. They used this delightful oil to remove their heavy make-up and keep their skin perfect. Camellia oil is very light and absorbed quickly and penetrates deep into the…

    Pomegranate Oil – The star of my award nominated Pomegranate & Lemon Nourishing Facial Oil

    Pomegranate Oil The star of my award nominated Pomegranate & Lemon Nourishing Facial Oil The juicy, yet crunchy seeds found in the striking pomegranate contain an oil rich in treasures for our skin. A relative newcomer in the world of plant oils for skin health, pomegranate oil has been studied extensively due to its unique composition. As well as the usual suspects (vitamin E, linoleic acid, palmitic acid etc) pomegranate seed oil contains a very rare omega 5 fatty acid called punicic acid, a whopping 80%! It is thought that this huge percentage of punicic acid is what makes pomegranate oil so useful for skin that is mature, damaged and stressed. Anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, antitumour and photoprotective are the top properties to come out of the…

    Mica – an ingredient we need to know about

    Mica

    Mica – an ingredient we need to know about Mica is the name given to a group of minerals used in a large number of consumer goods; cosmetics, electrical components, building materials and car paint are just a few. Mica is found naturally in the ground, with the most being sourced from India. It can also be found in other countries such as the USA, and Brazil. Sadly, much of the mica sourced from India is collected illegally, by children. It is estimated that around 25% of world production is sourced this way. It is a huge problem in the mica industry and it is really important that we educate ourselves and those around us to help eradicate this issue. As a user of mica…

    Rosehip Seed Oil – my first love in plant oils

    Rosehip Seed Oil in Skincare

      Rosehip Seed Oil – my first love in plant oils This wonderful oil, extracted from the seeds of the juicy rosehips was probably the first carrier oil I learnt about, and fell in love with. When I worked in my first health food shop there was one brand in a small white bottle, in a small white box that we sold so much of. This was clearly something I needed to learn about, something lots of our customers knew about already! Rosehip seed oil is one of the most widely used plant oils in natural skincare. It is a light and dry oil, suitable for all skin types and packed with antioxidants, and essential fats: Beta-carotene gives the unrefined oil a deep red colour,…

    Geranium Oil – It’s all about balance

    Geranium oil balancing skin

    This week’s blog has been part of my continuing series around the creation and formulation of the 2019 line. You can read parts 1-3 in this series as well: New Ingredient – Steam Distilled Lemon Essential Oil New product – Tropical Fruit & Coconut Mask New Ingredient – Sea Buckthorn   Geranium Oil & Skin Health   Geranium is one of the most well-known and well-used herbs for skin health. It’s up there with chamomile, calendula and lavender for it’s long history and effectiveness. Interestingly, I used to dislike the smell, a lot, which is why I didn’t use it when creating the original Helena Lane Skincare products 7 years ago. However, over the last few years I have been using it in my personal…

    New ingredient – Sea buckthorn

    Using Sea Buckthorn in Skincare

    When making skin care formulations I like to really get to know an ingredient before using it. Even when there is lots of great information, and research telling me its benefits. Sea buckthorn intrigued me right from the start, its intense orange colour drew me in and had me hooked. It glows with vibrancy and health. Sea buckthorn is a smallish shrub covered in prickles (it tries hard to keep hold of its treasure!) which, in late summer, produces hundreds of bright orange berries. It loves hot, dry weather and thrives in marginal soil. Ontario is a big growing region and it’s even grown right here in BC. It’s in the bright orange berries that the wonderful oil is found. It is exceptionally rich in…

    New Product – Tropical Fruit and Coconut Mask (coming soon)

    Tropical Fruit Coconut mask

    Using fruit acids to exfoliate and rejuvenate the skin is very popular in skin care products, and rightly so. Fruits contain various acids all of which can have fantastic benefits for our skin. Many skincare companies either extract and concentrate or even synthesize artificially these acids in order to create faster and more potent effects. However, my philosophy includes being gentle to the skin, and too much of these acids can cause burning and damage, sometimes long term, to the surface of our skin. I always like to use the whole plant or food as much as possible as I believe in a holistic approach to using natural ingredients. ie. Although we might know that one particular compound is responsible for the action we are…

    Steam Distilled Organic Lemon Essential Oil

    lemon essential oil

    As I finalize my new formulations, I wanted to start introducing some of the new ingredients I will be using. Starting with one of my favourites. Steam Distilled Organic Lemon Essential Oil     I am a massive fan of all things citrus, to eat, apply or smell and lemon tops them all for me. There is something so clean and vibrant about this fruit, it gets me every time. Lemon essential oil has wonderful properties for the skin, including oil balance, skin toning, acne fighting, and skin lightening. Reducing pigmentation in the skin is notoriously hard with natural products but I have seen lemon oil work great for this. Using lemon essential oil can be tricky though as the most common way to produce…

    Organic Sun Cream FAQs

    Organic Sun Cream FAQs

    March was unseasonably hot and dry here in BC which sparked the sun cream sales, and along with that lots of questions. Here are the most frequently asked questions about my organic sun creams. Organic Mineral Suncream FAQs 1. What SPF are they equivalent to? My sun creams are not (yet) tested by Health Canada for an official SPF rating. The amount of zinc I use combined with the natural filters of the base ingredients could give an SPF rating of about 30. BUT everyone’s skin is different and we recommend you reapply regularly when out in the sun until you know how the product and your skin react in the sun. 2. Can the sun creams be used on the face? Absolutely! They are safe…

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