I might not be your knight in shining armor but I can show you the ropes around lavender. They say as rosemary is to the spirit so is lavender to the soul. Did you know that a single glance on the purple lavender bushes can bring all sorts of beautiful imaginations to a hopeless mind? Well, that is just one of my many observations. Let us not forget its fine fragrance that can make a dull day bright. To sum it all lavender is a lovely, colorful, fragrant, and transformative soul that blossoms on nature.
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Traditional uses of Lavender
All in all, lavender is more than just glamour and aroma. It wonders and powers were discovered many centuries ago. Ancient Egyptian, Roman and Greek priests and royal families are credited for unraveling and popularizing the perfumery, culinary and sensational powers of lavender. Lavender was either used alone or in combination with other herbs and flowers.
Lavender had many household uses. Bouquets of lavender were used for decorative and refreshment purposes. Dried lavender was used to add pleasant fragrance to pillows. Dried lavender was also combined with chamomile, rose petals and marjoram to encourage relaxed and peaceful sleep. Lavender was used to form luxurious shower blends. The herb is rich in properties that improve dry, flaky skin and thus, it was used for skin nourishment and rejuvenation. Lavender baths are very soothing and relaxing and queens made sure that a few drops of it was added into their bath water.
Lavender was used to make perfumes and scented waters that filled the air with lingering refreshing and stimulating effects. The classical appeal of pure lavender water made it ideal for perfumery uses by royal women. Lavender, roses, scented geraniums and other sweet smelling plants were used to make a fragrance garden around the house. Most herbs and flowering plants bloom in late-spring and summer filling the surrounding areas with irresistible scent.
Dried lavender buds and lavender infusions were added to food for flavor. Water, milk and cream were the common ingredients used to prepare the infusions. Lavender was also used to prepare beverages such as lavender tea and lavender lemonade. Ancient priests used lavender oil for ointment purposes. Today, the herb is more useful than ever. The birth of aromatherapy has led to increased awareness of the benefits associated with lavender and other fragrant herbs.
Flash forward, today, all the attention has shifted to lavender essential oil. The oil is obtained from lavender- a plant that is grown in multiple areas around Europe, Asia and East Africa in large fields for commercial purposes. Lavender essential oil is obtained from the flowering tops of lavender through steam distillation. Its flowering spikes blossom in the summer producing a sweet aroma. Mostly, they are purple in color but can also come in other hues. Actually, white and pink varieties are quite common.
Uses and Benefits of Lavender Essential Oil
Forget everything that you have heard on the grapevine, here are the benefits of lavender essential oil.
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Treats anxiety and depression: If you have been suffering from anxiety and depression prick up your ears and learn how lavender oil can be of benefit to your recovery journey. The lavender oil that is commonly used to treat anxiety and depression is derived from the Lavendula angustifolia species. Several studies have revealed that oral administration of lavender oil to anxiety patients can significantly alleviate the condition. Besides, lavender oil improves anxiety associated symptoms such as somatic complaints, restlessness and poor sleeping habits.
In a study conducted to reveal the efficacy of lavender oil in treating anxiety, 221 anxiety disorder patients were subjected to a test. The investigators used orally administered lavender oil and placebo. The medications were distributed randomly to the patients who were required to report to the investigators after every 2 weeks. However, the entire assessment lasted for 10 weeks. The results revealed that patients treated with lavender oil recorded better sleeping habits and improved mental health. In addition, they did experience the seductive effects associated with common drugs. Therefore, lavender oil was identified as a gentle therapeutic treatment for anxiety.
Oral forms of lavender are also very effective for treating depression. A study involving 15 patients was carried out to test the effectiveness of orally administered lavender oil for depression. The oil and placebo (water) were used on alternating days for a period of 10 days. The outcomes revealed significant reduction in agitated behavior after using lavender oil. The oil was also used for massage on 21 patients suffering from depression and significant reduction on behavioral symptoms was recorded.
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Relieves bug bites and stings: Rubbing a drop of lavender oil on a bug sting or bite provides instant relief. Additionally, it can relieve swelling and redness caused by the same. This is attributed to the powerful antibacterial properties associated with lavender.
Cures acne: In some cases, lavender oil is used to treat acne pimples. Its strong antibacterial properties allow it to destroy the agents that cause and accelerate acne once it penetrates into the skin.
Improves skin complexion: Lavender oil can be used for improved skin complexion. Its rich properties provide a basis for balanced sebum production. Apply a few drops of the oil in your scares and tinted areas and after sometime you will notice some changes.
Treats Eczema: If you’ve got itchy, crusty and scaly skin, lavender is the oil for you.
Used for Relaxation: Inhaling the scent of lavender oil can lead to relaxation and calmness. This effect in felt in the both the mind and heart. It can also stimulate the nervous system thereby relieving migraines, sleeping problems and headaches. I will wrap up by saying that there are other miscellaneous benefits of lavender and they can only be realized through trying.
Keep Calm and buy lavender 😉