The Truth About Candles (and healthier options to use instead)

Who here LOVES candles???        Take a moment to think about what prompts you to bring a new one into your home.    Perhaps it's the fragrance that calls to you? Will it make your room feel cozy, comfortable, or relaxing? Or maybe it has a fresh, clean scent? Or a spicy aroma that’s perfect for the winter holidays? The scent of a candle can absolutely add to the ambiance of a space!    Or maybe you are compelled by a candle’s aesthetic appeal. Does the color or design fit perfectly with a particular room’s décor?    Or maybe you found some on super sale? Those clearance tags can be h...

How to Make Beautiful, Non-Toxic Bath Bombs

Are you in on the bath bomb craze???    Bath bombs are an easy way for tired bodies and souls to wind down, relax, and indulge in a bit of pampering at the end of a long day. Depending on the combination of ingredients, they may help detoxify your body, moisturize your skin, soothe sore muscles, or reduce stress.    These colorful, fizzing orbs also make bath time considerably more fun for kids. Mention I have one and my 6-year old will run for the tub without complaining. Certainly better than the usual runaround!   Over the last few of years, bath bombs have become increasingly popular. I feel like I see them almost everywhere I go these ...

Why Soak Your Feet + How to Do it for Maximum Therapeutic Benefit

Feet… we rely on them to move us an untold number of steps in our lifetimes, but we rarely think of them (except when they hurt!) and do precious little to care for them. Seems to me they deserve more thanks than they are getting!  One way I’ve recently started taking better care of my feet, as well as my entire body, is through the practice of soaking them in Epso...

How to Use Essential Oils for Focus & Concentration

There are times when we all need to increased focus to get something done, learn a new concept, or achieve a goal. Or when everything around us seems chaotic or out of control, leaving us feeling overwhelmed, frazzled, and ineffective. Essential oils are a great help to us in these situations, whether it’s to clear our minds, clarify our thoughts, provide grounding, increase retention of information, or offer a boost of energy. Here are some of my favori...

Essential Oils for the Winter Solstice (and the Entire Season)

Today is the winter solstice in the northern hemisphere.  Not familiar with this term? It’s the day each year when the sun travels on its lowest arc in the sky. This results in the shortest amount of daylight and longest period of darkness . It’s also the first official day of winter on American calendars. Yes, the sun is at its least today, with darkness prevailing for many more hours than the sun will be visible above the horizon. But rather than feeling bleak or oppressive, as some think of winter, it is instead the beginning of something… a day that shows us a gleam of light at the end of a long tunnel. Why?  Because tomorrow,...

How to Use Essential Oils to Boost Your Immune System

I DON’T WANT TO GET SICK   (pleads everyone this time of year) !!!   This post (and  it's companion ) will show you the natural remedies you need to stay healthy until Spring! November is here! We are now well into Fall and hurtling quickly toward winter.  With the cooling weather has arrived various forms of seasonal “ick.” You know what I’m talkin...

8 Reasons You Should Drink Golden Milk

New to golden milk, a.k.a. the " turmeric latte "? You're missing out on a most delicious, nourishing treat!  Originating in India, golden milk is a centuries-old Ayurvedic drink that has recently been making inroads in other regions. This comforting beverage is traditionally made by simmering milk with turmeric and other spices, such as ginger, cinnamon, black pepper, or cardamom.  While some people find it soothing a...

How to Stay Healthy While Traveling

Welcome back to the third and final part of my series on healthy travel! You’ve planned wisely, packed smartly, and journeyed using strategies to best to avoid illness and counteract the stress that travel puts on your body. Now that you’ve reached your destination, how do you best support your health? And how do you keep on track with your wellness goals while making the most of your vacation or sitting in meeting after meeting?  It's not as hard as you may think! Arm yourself with these tools and you can fully enjoy your vacation or be at the top of your game business-wise.  This post may contain...

How to Clean Your Home Without Toxic Chemicals (+ Recipes for Natural Cleaning that Actually Work)

Hi, again!  Welcome back for part 2 of my green cleaning series. As I discussed in  this blog post , many of the cleaning products on store shelves have been linked by peer reviewed studies to both acute and chronic health issues. Definitely not something to mess around with! Is it possible to clean your home (office, car, or any other type of facility) without all the harsh, health-compromising chemicals?  Absolutely! ...

Yoga & Essential Oils: Get Ready For Your Next Best Duo!

Yoga and its health benefits have been studied for generations. In the last 10 years, yoga participation numbers have grown steadily, with over 10 million more people participating in yoga in the spring of 2017 than there were in 2006 . It’s no surprise that today there are 36.7 million yoga participants in the United States alone! Those are staggering numbers! With its focus on breathing and posture, yoga reduces stress hormones and increases physical and emotional well-being, allowing for individuals to find peace in their hectic daily lives. Related Resources: Do you run, compete in triathlons, crossfit, d...

Essential Oils for Immune Support (and how to use them!)

Winter is upon us and many are already feeling under the weather.  My husband laid low for much of the weekend feeling less than stellar.   In addition, even healthy practices can put us at greater risk of weakened immune systems .  For example, prolonged periods of exercise and heavy training regimens are associated with sup...

Simple Guidelines for Diluting Essential Oils

I almost always dilute my essential oils before applying them to my skin.  Why? DOWNLOAD FREE DILUTION GUIDE Except in certain cases where applying oils "neat" or directly to your skin without a carrier oil may be appropriate (e.g., to stop active bleeding or immediately after burns, bug bites, or stings), dilution of oils is important before applying them to your skin.  Essential oils are VERY powerful and should be used with care and respect. When applied to the skin neat, essential oils can cause severe irritation, sens...

Simple Homemade Body Butter for Pain and Inflammation

Most of us experience muscle or joint pain or discomfort from time to time. Whether we sustain an injury, overdo exercise or yard work, or have a chronic condition, we are looking for ways to experience relief. There are so many natural methods to consider, from massage to acupuncture to infrared sauna to yoga to heat and electric stimulation (electromyostimulation).  We use all of thes...

14 Simple Ways to Aromatically Benefit from Essential Oils

We don't often think about the role that the scents we inhale play within our bodies. We may be vaguely or even acutely conscious of certain aromas, which can span the range from fresh, clean, light, flowery, spicy, earthy, or sweet to loamy, stale, musty, repulsive, putrid, nauseating, or just plain rotten. But does their effect go beyond the mere enjoyment or dislike of a particular scent?   Most definitely!  Your sense of smell elicits powerful physiologic, mental, and emotional responses. This means that the aromatic molecules tha...

Effective DIY Bug Spray Recipes: The Natural, Non-Toxic Protection You Need This Summer

Mosquitoes are an inevitable downside to summertime. I absolutely hate being bitten, followed by the days of itching and temptation to scratch the welts. Unfortunately for me, I’m a mosquito magnet. Even if no one else is getting bit, my arms and legs are being eaten alive. Couple that with having spent the majority of my career traveling in parts of...

Traveling??? Which Essential Oils Should You Take Along?

I recently took an overseas business trip for the first time in over two years. I definitely couldn’t take my entire oil collection with me to Bosnia and so set about trying to narrow down the list to just the “bare essentials.” So many choices!  Which...

Certain Essential Oils Make Skin Prone to UV Damage: Know Before You Go Out!

Summer is quickly drawing near. We’ve had a few hot, sunny days in the DC area already! If you love applying essential oils to your skin (most of us do!), but also love to spend time in the sun (which is important for Vitamin D acquisition), take note: certain essential oils are photosensitizers (phototoxic) when applied to this skin .   What in the world does that mean?!? Put simply, they make your skin more prone to damage from the sun’s UV rays. This means that the parts of the skin to which the phototoxic oil was applied could experience burning, blistering, and discoloration when exposed to sunlight or tanning beds. Which ones?  This applies primar...

The Perfect Pick-Me-Up!

Cold pressed from the peel, Wild Orange essential oil is one of my all-time favorites for its fresh, sweet, and invigorating aroma. It has a variety of uses from aiding the digestive system to energizing the mind and body. Part of its appeal stems from its chemical makeup. Wild Orange is high in monoterpenes, which gives the oil purifying and stimulating qualities that can help e...