essential oils: homemaking.
I’ve decided I’m going to write a tiny series on essential oils. I am no expert (although I would love to be one day!) on essential oils, but I do love to study them, use them, mix them and buy them!
After getting pregnant, I remember looking longingly at my carved wooden Indian box of essential oils, some recently purchased roll ons tucked next to each other, unusable for the next 9 months (because there are very few essential oils that are safe for use during pregnancy, mostly due to the lack of information). I love to smell good. I love natural scents (but don’t get me wrong, I do not like body odour, that my friends is natural gone wrong). Whenever I wear my oils, I notice the benefits of them right away. They smell great, and depending on what I’m wearing, I feel uplifted, grounded and always relieved. I smell like myself. They are so comforting. I don’t own a huge lot, but I have collected many over the years. I still have many, many more to collect!
I have two types of essential oils. Skin friendly, perfume oils (like ylang ylang, grapefruit) and pharmaceutical, disinfecting oils (like cinnamon, clove). I am all about benefits when it comes to food and although I don’t ingest all my essential oils, I do kind of consider them “food”, because most of them are derived from food sources and far friendlier than chemical cleaners or scents.
Spicy Disinfecting Home Spray
- 1 cup distilled water
- 2 tsp. alcohol
- 3 tsp liquid castile soap
- 5 drops clove essential oil
- 6 drops rosemary essential oil
- 4 drops cinnamon leaf essential oil (or cinnamon bark)
- 4 drops frankincense essential oil
- 6 drops lemon essential oil
Add to a spray bottle, give it a good shake and you’re set. I use it to clean my counters, spray down my kitchen sponge (because I don’t change them every week…who does?) and it’s great for use in the bathroom, because it smells divine and cuts the smell of wet towel. These essential oils really do disinfect the air and I’m sure they attack germs on the surface! During the Black Plague, thieves would rob the dead bodies, stealing their clothes, shoes and jewels, and to protect themselves, they would slather the oils from clove, cinnamon, and rosemary on their bodies, particularly their temples and necks. Lemon, is of course, a well known disinfectant, and is found is all sorts of cleaning products (not necessarily as a pure essential oil though). Cinnamon and clove essential oils are highly anti-microbial and anti-bacterial for a great diversity of infectious bacteria. Be careful not to spray this near eyes, cuts, or even on the skin, as the clove and cinnamon will burn you. I have tried. I did get burned!
I also use lemon oil on my cutting board, mixed together with some water, vinegar, salt and if it’s particularily grubby, some baking soda. I give it a good scrub with a sponge or my hands if I’m feeling cut free and then scrape it off with a dough scrapper and rinse it well. This recipe is for one time use only. Just mix up a little batch on the butcher’s block whenever you need it.
Butcher’s Block Lemon Scrub
- 3-4 drops lemon essential oil (because why waste a fresh lemon on the cutting board?) OR 3 drops lemon and 1 drop rosemary essential oil
- 1-2 tsp salt (depending on the size of your board)
- 1 tsp white vinegar
- 1 tsp baking soda (optional)