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Whether you consider yourself an uber-low maintenance person, or if you tend to dive diva-deep into your skin care routine, paying attention to your skin protects it from the harsh effects of environmental stress and health problems, and keeps you looking and feeling your best. Dry skin is an uncomfortable condition that is sometimes accompanied by scaling, itching or cracking. If left untreated, dry skin can get worse—so taking steps to address the problem sooner than later helps you to feel comfortable and reduces the risk of ongoing problems.
Dryness of the skin occurs for a variety of reasons—you might have naturally dry skin, or have occasional contact dermatitis (which is when your skin reacts to something it touches). Older skin tends to be more dry and cold weather can exacerbate an irritation. No matter the cause, the key to resilient skin is understanding what kind of support your particular skin type needs to overcome the problem.
It’s important to use a gentle cleanser to keep your body and face free from dirt and bacteria. Use one that works for your skin type – not just whatever bar or body wash you happen to have in the cupboard. For dry skin, choose a mild liquid soap, one without alcohol or added chemical fragrance. Add a drop or two of organic Lavender essential oil to tone and repair the effects of daily environmental exposure. For mixed skin types, or a complexion that is only occasionally dry, add a drop of geranium essential oil. Wash your face gently, taking care not to scrub too hard to avoid irritation and stress. Don’t use hot water to rinse – just warm. If your splash is too hot, it removes the natural oils your skin needs to stay comfortable.
A good quality moisturizing lotion should be used every time you wash. Similar to cleansers, it’s important to fine-tune the moisturizer to your skin type. Oily skin can benefit from a natural, common carrier oil, such as rosehip, to dilute essential oils like frankincense and add benefits for long-term skin health. Skin that borders on dry could benefit from a lighter lotion base with a few drops of certified organic tea tree and lavender essential oils (or both). Moisturizing prevents your skin from drying out and leaves it hydrated and smooth. Your lotion will work best if you apply it to skin that is slightly damp, just after washing.
A toner is usually applied after washing at the end of the day and can be effective for smoothing, softening, and calming irritated skin. Commercial toners often contain ingredients that aggravate sensitive skin types—but you can easily create your own natural toner customized with your favorite essential oils. Essential oils in skincare can replenish and restore nutrients to your skin and can diminish the appearance of redness and dryness.
Your nose is underrated, according to science. Besides being an excellent way to identify wet dog and wasabi, your olfactory sense is a direct path to your brain—emotions, memories, even the chemical toolbox your brain uses to keep your body healthy. Research has shown that childhood memories linked to scent stay with you throughout life. That means the smell of woodsmoke or the sweet tang of orange peel can pull you back to experiences and emotions across decades of time—and this mental shortcut can be used as a safe, easy-to-use form of alternative medicine.
When you understand the biophysical mechanics behind aromatherapy, it makes sense that this process has an outsized physical and psychological impact using just your sense of smell. From perceptions of physical pain to emotional catharsis, studies have shown that aromatherapy offers multiple powerful health benefits, including:
Aromatherapy works by stimulating smell receptors in the nose, which sends messages through the nervous system to the limbic system — the part of the brain that controls emotions. By tapping into this master control system, numerous serious health problems can be eased and mental/emotional challenges can be alleviated.
One of the biggest advantages of essential oil aromatherapy is that anyone with a good sense of smell can give it a go. When used as recommended, the vast majority of essential oils are both safe and easy to use. We suggest starting with a simple experiment … breathe the scent of an essential oil directly from the bottle. Take note of how you feel, and how your body reacts over the next several hours. When you find an oil you like, you can also get efficient exposure to using an ultrasonic diffuser. These simple devices use tap water and a few drops of essential oil to fill a room with aromatherapy mist. They also offer the advantage of allowing you to easily blend two or more of your favorite oils for a synergistic effect.
When first experimenting with aromatherapy, begin by looking at an essential oil uses chart to determine what kind of results you want for your body. Is your goal deeper relaxation? Try N8 Essentials certified organic Lavender essential oil. Do you need energy late in the day? Go for our certified organic Orange or Peppermint essential oils. Each N8 product has a nuanced aromatherapy effect—Eucalyptus offers warm focus, Geranium brings a tension-busting emotional calm. The essential oil that will work best for your body depends both on your physical chemistry and your mental association with that particular scent. So jump in and begin experimenting with essential oil aromatherapy … it’s a sweet and comforting way to practice natural self-care for both your body and your mind.
Unless you’ve somehow tapped into Captain Kirk’s teleportation technology, travel is not easy. It’s never fun to stay cramped for hours behind a steering wheel or belted into a tiny and remarkably uncomfortable airline seat. It only gets more challenging if you have a kid strapped in a car seat just eight inches behind your head for hours at a time … or, heaven forbid, in your lap on the plane. But there are ways to make your journey a little bit easier by using essential oils.
Take, for instance, your road trip last summer. You didn’t realize when you looked at the map that those tiny squiggles meant that the road you planned to drive had switchbacks that would challenge the most ironclad stomach. After three hours of left, right, left, right, left … your stomach is ready to abandon ship. Thankfully you’ve stashed certified organic ginger and lemon in the car. A few drops in a car diffuser or on a tissue fills your space with sweet tummy relief and lets you power through to your destination.
Or think back to the time you flew to Albuquerque for a three-day conference. By the time you get back to your hotel room at the conclusion of the last meeting, all you want to do is crawl into bed with the music loud enough to drown out the convention speaker’s voice droning on in your head. And the weird chemical-must smell of the hotel room isn’t helping you feel any better. Lucky for you, you packed a bottle of certified organic lavender and geranium blend and are able to do a little emergency aromatherapy to ease your stress headache and fill your space with calm energy and focus.
Or maybe you are finally on that once-in-a-lifetime trip to Thailand, but intense jet lag is killing your mojo. A jeep tour leaves early in the morning, and you need some serious help waking up your brain to be ready. Good thing you packed N8 Essential’s certified organic Energize blend and a personal inhaler. In just a few minutes you are on your feet and ready for the adventure of the day. No matter how you travel, enjoy the destination more with the help and support of powerful essential oil singles and blends.
Whether you are a diamond diva or a low-maintenance mama, investing in the health of your skin with regular care not only protects this important part of your body from the harsh effects of the environment but keeps you looking and feeling your best. The key to resilient skin is understanding what your skin needs and treating it well.
The easiest way to approach a daily skin regime is to think of it like this – in the morning skincare should focus on prevention and protection for the day. Your routine at night should be centered around cleansing and repair.
You really only need to cleanse your skin once in a day – unless you work something like construction or are raising a toddler, and then all bets are off. For the rest of you, just rinse your face with warm water in the morning before applying moisturizer and sunscreen. At night, after a full day of wind and dirt, more dedicated care is required. Wash your face with a cleanser to remove dirt, excess oils and makeup. If you choose, you can then use a toner, an exfoliant, and serums. Always end with a good, mild moisturizing lotion containing the essential oils that work best for your skin.
When refining your routine for your skin, consider the following: