It is not uncommon these days to see people that have had either their skin or digestive system damaged from inappropriate use of essential oils. The body sets up an cycle of inflammation that just continues to get worse the more it is stimulated either by the essential oils themselves or due to other molecules and organisms taking advantage of the damage that is already there. To learn more about how this damage occurs, scroll down and click to view our previous post.
So now that your skin is inflamed and irritated. Molecules are getting in that are not intended to and just continuing the cycle. You need to protect your skin. It could be easy to put a cream on because that is moisturizing and it may have herbs in it that are anti-inflammatory to help as well.
Not for everyone.
For some individuals the preservatives in the cream will continue to cause damage to the already damaged cellular connections. For other individuals, the anti-inflammatory molecules and other molecules in the cream will continue to stimulate the inflammatory reaction because they get through the skin at a higher percentage than they normally would. This is a huge challenge that is hard to fix.
So what do we do?
For the skin, generally you want to use a barrier product, something that is intended to sit on the skin and not absorb into it. This will slow other molecules from entering into the skin and allow the body to relax and calm down. This is not a quick process and if there are inflammatory simulators entering the body through the digestive tract as well there is a whole separate set of irritants coming from the other side of the problem. You need to support your body from inside and out by removing inflammatory simulators from your diet as well.
- 4oz high antioxidant olive oil (120ml or 1/2 cup)
- 1oz beeswax (30g or 2 Tablespoons)
Instructions: Melt beeswax in a small glass pot on low heat. Remove from heat and pour in olive oil. Expose your olive oil to as little heat as possible. Some of your wax will re-solidify when you add the oil, just stir until it melts again-you may need to apply a bit more heat. Pour into a metal or glass container (not plastic), cover, and allow to cool before use. Do not add anything else at all!
Why not coconut oil or another kind of oil?
My general experience with using coconut oil on these kinds of skin inflammations has been that it does not act as a barrier but can still cause additional inflammation for many individuals. Part of the active barrier of this above formula is the high percentage of wax in the product which is higher than your average salve. The antioxidant activity of the olive oil tends to be the gentle place to encourage a calming of the inflammatory activity locally with out causing additional irritation. Plus, coconut oil tends to actually be more drying to the skin with consistent use.
Where do I find a ‘high antioxidant olive oil’?
You cannot get this at your average grocery store. Head to a specialty olive oil store and ask them. If they do not know what you are talking about they are not educated enough and you should head to a different olive oil store. You also want to look for an olive oil that is low in tannins.
Check back on Thursday for our next post on removing some of the internal causes of your inflammation. You have to support this challenge from both inside and out.
Jillian Carnrick, founder and manager of The Dancing Herbalist, has a Masters of Science Degree in Herbal Medicine, practices as a nutritionist, and is a Certified Personal Trainer and Exercise Is Medicine Professional through the American College of Sports Medicine. Join her for live classes in The Dancing Herbalist’s home herbalist courses online for more learning opportunities or work one-on-one with Jillian with her wellness and herbal consultations.