There are many benefits to being tucked away down here at the bottom of the world, but the gaping ozone hole above New Zealand is not one of them! Our sun is fierce and burn times are short, so we have to take extra care over the summer months to ensure our skin is protected from harmful UV rays.
Covering up or staying out of the sun during peak burn times (UV levels are typically highest from 11am to 3pm) is a good place to start. And then there’s sunscreen, which we are told to apply liberally, all over the face and body, every few hours. The question is - could this be doing us more harm than good?
Certainly a lot of mainstream, supermarket- shelf sunscreens contain a cocktail of chemicals (including oxybenzone, benzoate, parabens and other toxins) that are best avoided. Mineral-based sunscreens are possibly your best option. And when combined with the healing and nurturing properties of essential plant oils you should be on your way to sun-safe, happier summer skin. Here are three powerful, 100% natural and organic solutions for effective pre-sun and after-sun care.
Organic Jojoba Oil The optimum absorbency of high-grade Jojoba Oil offers profound hydration and nutrition with a rich, natural balance of essential fatty acids and vitamins. Acting more like a liquid wax than an oil, it’s absorbed into the skin easily and it leaves a protective film on the outer surface layer. So when applied before other products, it softens and conditions while providing a natural barrier to deflect the harmful elements found in many UVA products and sunscreens.
Organic Aloe Vera Gel This cool, clear gel is nature’s perfect sunburn treatment. It gives instant hydration and cooling relief while providing exactly what the skin needs to minimise damage and enhance the repair process. It has been further enhanced with Calendula tea and Lavender Hydrosol and their inherent healing properties, and all ingredients are pure and organic to ensure that the active compounds are intact to work nature’s full magic healing and soothing. Slather it on until the heat ebbs. Apply at least 3-6 times to ensure saturation.
Organic Lavender Sweet Lavender is one of the most calming, healing essential oils available. It is anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, analgesic and anti-oxidant - wonderfully gentle on the skin and well known for its power on burns. There are various Lavender species, some of which contain higher concentrations of camphor that will not feel good on a burn, so it is important to be clear it’s Organic Lavender Sweet we are talking about. This can generally be applied direct to small sunburnt areas (with the pure organic Lavender that we source, we have never encountered an adverse reaction to neat applications but it’s always good to proceed with caution for sensitive skin). And for larger body areas:
• Add 25 drops of Organic Lavender Sweet essential oil in a tepid bath, soak for 15min.
• 15 drops of Organic Lavender Sweet in a tablespoon of Aloe Vera Gel, apply to sunburned area liberally.
• Spray cool, distilled Lavender water on the body for quick relief and safe, gentle healing.
• 1 drop of Organic Lavender Sweet to 1ml of your moisturiser or body oil (preferably organic and natural also).
All Absolute Essential plant oils are sourced, produced, processed & handled to maintain optimum natural integrity & maximum quality and purity. Click the links above for more information on the individual products - & enjoy your Summer!