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Sandalwood

 

Sandalwood industry has been experiencing its greatest peak in the last 10 years. Sandalwood tree has been praised for its timber and essential oil made from softwood and roots for centuries. The best quality plants are known to come from India. But sadly East Indian sandalwood has been on the verge of extinction since aromatherapy started to gain its popularity in the West in late 20th century.

East Indian Sandalwood (S. album) is one of those unique species which is very difficult to cultivate. This is because the germination process is complex, as it is hemiparasitic, which means it requires association with other plants for nutrients. The sandalwood feeds itself partly through root binding to host trees and is protected from aggressive sunshine through the host canopy. A kilogram of Indian sandalwood oil now sells for about $3,000, or about five times as much as silver, and prices are rising by at least 20 to 25 percent a year, according to the South India Sandalwood Products Dealers & Exporters Association. India has historically been the dominant supplier but sales from government auctions plunged in recent years due to over exploitation and smuggling. Sales of sandalwood sourced illegally from natural forests in India are estimated to dwarf official production, which was mostly state-controlled until the middle of last decade. Supply from India remains variable and fell to just 250 tons of wood a year in 2016 from almost 4,000 tons a year in 1970. But fear not, there’s always a solution for aromatherapy practitioners and users. Australian sandalwood plantations have been growing Inidian sandalwood trees successfully over last 2 decades.

(Indian sandalwood seedling planted with its host plant)

Australia is also home to another species of sandalwood tree – Santalum spicatum, a native sandalwood. Producing a lighter and less intense essential oil than Santalum album, Santalum spicatum is fast becoming the preferred option for herbalists and for use in aromatherapy. With a long history of sustainable harvest, Australian sandalwood has been regulated since the 1920s, with management of wild harvesting and stringent guidelines for replanting and the establishment of sandalwood plantations. Considered to be very similar in constituents and actions to Indian sandalwood, Australian sandalwood has a history of use for its topical antiseptic and antibacterial qualities. The woody fragrance of Australian sandalwood is calming and soothing and suitable for massage, essential oil diffusers and also for a range of natural skin care applications.

The main difference between Australian and Indian sandalwood essential oils is that Australian variety (S. spicatum) contains nearly twice as little of the main constituent (15-25% of alpha- santalol) as its Indian counterpart (about 45-50%).

Some of the most-often quoted qualities of Sandalwood essential oils are: relaxing and calming, helps with memory, astrigent (causing the contraction of skin cells -helpful in natural cosmetics), anti-viral and antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, expectorant, anti-ageing, aphrodisiac.

Here’s a good “BUT” from me – but aren’t we supposed to work towards sustainability and choose essential oils which would be suitable for a particular condition taking into account their price, sustainability in their farming practices, as well as availability?

For instance, in this study, it says that sandalwood essential oil exhibited anti-viral action against herpes virus. And a lot of companies (retailers, producers) jumped at it and now use anti-viral action of sandalwood as a selling pitch. But if you read the study, thyme, ginger and hyssop were trialed and performed just as well as sandalwood. The cost to my client would be considerably smaller if I prescribe thyme, for instance!

Sandalwood’s protective action against sun-damage associated skin cancer has been documented and this is one of the cases, where I’d use it in skincare.

My take on using Sandalwood essential oil is this: use it for its unique properties – APHRODISIAC (you can’t go cheap in this area!) – skin products and perfumery, ANTI-AGEING and ASTRIGENT – skin products, ANXIOLYTIC / ANTIDEPRESSANTツ – inhalation, massage, topical application of diluted oil. That’s it. There’re much better and cheaper expectorants, anti-virals and anti-inflammatories in the world of essential oils!

Use luxury oils, such as Sandalwood, appropriately and help nature as it helps you.

 

 

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Happy Star Perfurmes

The idea of making perfumes from essential oils was born from personal experience, when all of a sudden I developed strong intolerance to chemical perfumes. I’d feel dizzy, unwell and would develop a slight headache when came in contact with a fragrance. It was extremely inconvenient as strong perfume smells are everywhere – public transport, shopping centres, gyms, theatres, cinemas – you name it! To make this intolerance of mine worse, I fell pregnant and the reaction to fragrances multiplied by a dozen! This is when I got serious about creating something for my husband, as he was not ready to abandon his morning routine of spraying a healthy dose of eau de cologne before leaving for work. And after a couple of months (that’s how long it take to “brew” an essential oils- based perfume) I had 4 options for him to try. Only two were okayed, and only one of those two became an all-time favourite. I was extremely proud of myself and two years later ventured out to create several other perfumes for women. This is a brief introduction to how my hand-crafted fragrances came into existence. Since then there have been a few changes to the favourite recipes (“Enigma” has transformed into a more floral and sexy aroma), in particular, I started adding Australian Bush flower essences into them (on demand), which has proved to boost their effectiveness when working on the emotional level (according to the feedback).

Let’s look into why people get sensitive to chemicals around them and, relevant to this post, to the chemical compounds in store-bought fragrances. The reasons are varied from individual to individual, but most common are:

  • poor-functioning liver, which struggle to process all the environmental toxins that enter the body;
  • auto-immune disorders.

In my case it was definitely the liver! It wasn’t coping well with the processed food in the diet (yes, that was the case years ago!), with the stress and all the hormonal imbalances. But reacting to certain unhealthy substances is actually a blessing in disguise, if the reaction is mild and goes away quickly once the culprit is out of reach. Why it may be a good thing? This can be explained by the fact that the body’s self-protective mechanisms come to work here: once the body encounters a chemical that is disruptive to its well-being, it signals with aches, pains and discomfort, that this product is not good. But human bodies are fantastic at adapting to the given conditions. If prolonged exposure to chemicals occurs, our bodies simply adjust, shutting down some of the functions along the way (which is not ideal and not conducive to good health), switching off the immediate sensitivity to chemicals, but developing health conditions, such as eczema, psoriasis, asthma or other auto-immune disorders.

 

All_original_designer_Perfumes_Fragrances

 

 

Why many people are developing allergic reactions to artificial fragrances? Perfumery industry has gone a long way away from natural scents. There窶决e thousands of laboratory derived aromatic chemicals, which are used for modern colognes and perfumes. Strawberry smell produced by the strawberry plant is processed in a completely different way to the strawberry scent produced in a lab. Many of the lab-manufactured chemicals are triggers (not cause, for the causes are in us, it is our compromised microbiome, also known as our immunity) for asthma sufferers. Asthmatic people are best not to wear any perfume at all, but if you really want to have some scent on, better go for a natural option. It is also a good idea to change scents once in a while to prevent a reaction to a certain essential oil.

Another known fact is that some of the chemicals in the industrial perfumes are hormone disruptors. This means that they act in the body as substances that put your hormones out of balance. Even PMS may be associated with using certain aromatic substances on skin – for whatever you put on your skin, gets into your bloodstream. My advice 窶 if you wouldn’t want to eat your face/hand cream窶冱 or perfume窶冱 ingredients, don窶冲 put it on your skin.

But there窶冱 an issue with getting to know a cologne窶冱 ingredients, they are simply not on the label. They constitute so-called proprietary formula, which cannot be disclosed to the public. Basically, what it means is that you will never find out what exactly you put onto your skin and ultimately into your body.

There is yet a scientist who would be able to duplicate a chemical formula of an essential oils. Essential oils are amazingly complex substances, their chemical content varies depending on the country of origin and seasonal variations. The aroma is layered and intrinsically complex. It is true, that aromatherapy, as a science, has obtained the deep understanding and knowledge of the chemical compounds in essential oils – terpenes, phenols, aldehydes, ketones, esters, coumarins, to name a few. But it is their combination that makes an essential oil one whole complicated botanical substance, a true nature’s gift.

So with my long-standing passion for essential oils and health, I decided to start making perfumes and colognes using 100% essential oils.

 

natural-perfume

 

 

Over the last 10 years I have been experimenting with alcohol- and oil- based scents, then ventured out to make solid perfumes. And now you can choose from nine scents (1 for men, 7 for women, 1 unisex).

But what I窶冦 most proud of is the service of custom-made perfumes. This is a unique, made only for you, scent, that takes into consideration you level of health 窶 both physical and emotional. I also use Bach or Australian Bush flower essences in the perfumes/colognes to boost their therapeutic ツeffect.

 

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See the full range of natural perfumes here.

Julia runs workshops, where she teaches about how to use essential oils safely for people and pets, and where participants enjoy creating their own aromatherapy products, which they take away with them.

Visit “Workshops” tab on our website to be up-to-date with the latest offerings.
Email your questions about how Julia can help you achieve your health goals using aromatherapy and naturopathy – info@happystar.com.au

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Peru Balsam essential oil

It窶冱 freezing cold in Melbourne窶冱 Dandenongs. We had some snow and hail last week! Today the air is crisp and clear and the sunshine adds a festive look to it.

And I窶冦 here to share my excitement about the new oil we now stock 窶 Peru Balsam.

Peru Balsam ツis made from a sap of a tree, Myroxylon balsamum (L.).

Bテ。lsamo_do_Peru

Peru Balsam essential oil has a deep aroma, frankincense and lemon notes jump at you straight away. It窶冱 also cinnamon-y and with a touch of benzoin (vanilla).

It is a mental stimulant, particularly good for stress. But traditionally it has been used topically for many skin problems: dry skin, eczema, minor cuts and wounds.ツ It is recommended to dilute this oil if used topically.

When diffused or used in an aroma lamp, Peru Balsam is fantastic for respiratory conditions, such as bronchitis. It is a fair antimicrobial and antiviral, so can be of use during colds and flu season.

On the metaphysical level it can be used to help process grief, loss, or shift the reluctance to let go.

 

Email info@happystar.com.au to order.