Sunday, September 14, 2008

Jumping Juniper Berries!

If you are not familiar yet with Juniper, you'll want to learn a bit about this magnificent herb for sure! It is actually not a berry, but is derived from conifer trees...sort of like tiny, round pine cones. They are used to flavor norther European cuisine and they are also what gives gin it's unique flavor, as well. Juniper berries are also known to have medicinal qualities. Herbalists often use juniper as a diuretic.
So, why would we want to add this to our soaps? I am always on the look out for herbal healing ingredients that will naturally relieve common skin conditions and after researching it a bit, juniper seemed an obvious choice to add to our line of skin care. I'll be honest, as an herbalist this was actually an herb that I was relatively unfamiliar with and while it may have benefit as a diuretic, I prefer to work with other herbs. I had not considered the amazing beneficial treatments that are associated primarily with the essential oil of juniper berry rather than the whole herb itself. These benefits include the treatment of acne, dermatitis, psoriasis, and weeping eczema. Wow! The aroma of juniper oil is quite pleasant too! It has a refreshing, clean and slightly woody scent. It is a bit medicinal, but not in an overpowering way. It blends well with other oils, such as lavender, camphor, tea tree...
To introduce juniper to our line of herbal healing skin care products, I first wanted to work on adding it to a simple soap. I decided that our cold processed method might not allow enough of the oil to work it's wonders...so, instead I added it to our gentle pourable base. I was very pleased with the result! But, what could I add to it to enhance it further? After much thought and experimenting, I settled on organic rose hips that had been ground into a powder. Perfect! This final touch gives a speckled look to the soap itself while adding additional antioxidant healing qualities. The aroma is still 100% juniper, whether that is good or bad we'll leave up to you to decide. I will certainly be creating additional blends with juniper in the near future so if you are not crazy about the scent, keep your eyes peeled for a different spin on it.
I am also working on a juniper healing balm to be added very soon!
If you are interested in the juniper soap, the first batch of test bars is being included in our family pack of healing soaps now. By the end of this week, we will be adding it as an individual bar! We hope you will give us your feedback!

We've also added a few fun autumn aromas to our family packs! Check this one out...
-Apple Harvest (with real maple syrup & apple cider, spices, balsam essential oil and a small amount of deliciously scented phathalate free fragrance oil) This one is yummy!
My daughters and my husband really wanted an apple variety added to our seasonal line, so this is the result. Without patting myself on the back too much, I think I came up with a pretty good one here. If you are a fan of apples, you'll be sure to like this.

Hope you had a restful weekend! Our family's plans to head over with a bunch of friends from church to an old-fashioned little country festival got rained out today. Bummer! On the other hand, we really need this rain in a bad way. So, we're catching up on some "around the house" work today and even sorting through some baby stuff...only 6 weeks remaining!

~Jennifer

1 comment:

e_wickenheiser said...

mmm...Jennifer this sounds yummy. I will definetly have to try this soap out. and 6 more weeks...congratulations!! I thought I had read somewhere that you were expecting, but was not sure!! Get some rest! Take care!

Erin Demey
www.dizzdemey.etsy.com