Prickly Pear Seed Oil

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prickly pear

Prickly Pear Seed Oil, Barbary Fig Seed Oil

Origin

Prickly pear seed oil is a fairly newcomer to the beauty industry but one that is quite in vogue, no matter if you call it barbary fig oil, cactus fruit seed oil or opuntia ficus-inidica seed oil. However, in Mexico, I always knew  that a prickly pear is a  “tuna”, the fruit of a cactus called Nopal. Nopal is a cactus that is native to the Americas. Mexico, with over 80 different varieties of tuna, is the top producer and exporter.

Prickly pear

Peeling a prickly pear or tuna is a delicate endeavor as it is full of small “espinas” thorns that can get under the skin. But once peeled it is a delicious treat. The fruit is used to make “agua frescas” or lemonade, marmalades, gorditas, gelatin, alcohol and in salsas. Prickly pears are quite versatile; however, my favorite way to eat them is just peel and eaten raw.

Prickly pear seed oil

Prickly pear seed oil is pressed from the seeds and depending on who you ask, it takes approximately 8 tons of cactus fruit to make one liter of  oil. The  seeds are hard and must be pressed to make the precious oil. You can see how it is our costliest ingredient and we buy only organic certified.

Here is a great article on the properties of the oil. The oil contains linoleic acid, phytosterols, polyphenols and Vitamin E. Therefore, it contains all your your skin needs to retain moisture, protect and nourish your skin.

Our skin therapy has prickly pear seed oil, camellia seed oil, beeswax, infused with lavender and lime. It is a customer favorite as it only take a small amount to hydrate the skin. Some of our fans also use it as a make-up remover. However you use it, you will love the delicate calming aroma that lingers on your skin.

 

 

 

Tupelo Honey

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Tupelo honey

Tupelo honey is often referred to as Southern gold or the Queen of honey and rightly so. This velvety honey is the only honey diabetics can eat. Its high fructose content means that it is quickly absorbed by the body. Compared to other honeys it is has a longer release of energy making it also perfect for athletes. This also makes it the only honey that doesn’t crystallize, it remains liquid for years.

The Tree

The Ogeechee Tupelo tree was named for the river in Georgia where it was discovered by William Bartram, the Ogeechee River. It is also called sour tupelo gum, white tupelo, and bee tupelo. The trees grow in swamps. Therefore, the beehives are on stilts for them to gather the nectar from the female trees that have the blossoms. As the flower is like a magnolia, quite delicate, the hives have to be close to the trees. The red fruit of the tree ripens in autumn and can be made into jams and as a substitute for limes.

The Bees

Timing is everything with tupelo honey harvesting. And of course, the bees. Honey bees can produce about ½ tsp of honey in its lifetime and it take about two million flowers to produce one pound of honey. This is probably why they are called worker bees. Tupelo honey has always been my favorite especially in my grits honey scrub.

Witch Hazel

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Witch Hazel

Witch hazel is a naturally powerful ingredient in HollyBeth Organics’ Marigold Toner (one of my favorite products – seriously, I use it at least three times a day!). Combined with calendula, clary sage, and lavender, HollyBeth’s witch hazel based toner is the ultimate acne-fighting, irritation soothing, eye de-puffing, skin refreshing spray.

Origins

Witch hazel is native to the US and used by Native Americans to treat colds, eye infections, kidney problems, skin conditions, stings and wounds. Today it is widely known as an astringent and effective acne treatment.

In the Wild

The plant is interesting for numerous reasons. As one of the few plants to go to full bloom in fall and winter, it is one of the only food sources for insect life (flies, midges, beetles) that tolerates the cold, thereby holding a monopoly over wintertime pollination—an interesting ecological niche! Witch hazel’s seeding mechanism is very unique. The previous year’s seed capsules mature at the same time as its current year’s flowers, and quite often one can hear an audible popping sound as the seeds are forcefully ejected up to 25 out from the tree like bullets.

Animal Favorite

Witch hazel is also a major part of animal life. It often grows in dense thickets, providing cover for birds and small mammals. The seeds provide food for insects, wild turkeys, bobwhite quail, as well as gray squirrels. Furthermore, ruffed grouse and white tailed deer feed upon the buds and flowers.

Skin Care Benefits

Witch hazel is amazingly beneficial to the skin. Its natural astringent properties make it a great tool against acne, regulating oil production and reducing inflammation. It also helps reduce puffiness and tighten skin, making it a great defense against under eye bags. Feeling oily or grimy? Witch hazel is a great skin refresher. It cleanses and purifies, calming the pores and soothing the skin while gently hydrating and restoring natural balance. Suffering from razor burns or sun burns? Try a little witch hazel to calm the area and soothe irritation. Want a product that conquers all of these concerns? Click here to discover HollyBeth Organics’ witch hazel based Marigold Toner.

Grapefruit Essential Oil

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Grapefruit Essential Oil

Grapefruit essential oil is a great addition to one’s wellness routine. It is full of vitamin C and antioxidants. HollyBeth uses grapefruit essential oil in several of her products, for it greatly benefits the health of the skin.

Origins of The Grapefruit

Grapefruit, Citirus Paradici, is the only citrus fruit whose beginnings are rooted in the West Indies, rather than Southeast Asia. Some believe Captain Shaddock introduced pomelo seeds to Jamaica, therefore engendering an accidental hybrid of sweet orange and pomelo called the forbidden fruit. There is no record to back up this theory, therefore scientists believe the grapefruit is a natural hybrid. In 1750, the Rev. Griffith Hughes writes of the forbidden fruit in his book the Natural History of Barbados, the hybrid’s first documented mention. In the 1800’s, a farmer dubbed the forbidden fruit grapefruit for the way it grows in grape-like clusters. The grapefruit eventually made its way to the US in 1823 thanks to French settlers.

Benefits

The rind of the grapefruit is cold-pressed for essential oil. The oil aids digestion, boosts  immunity, and works as an antiseptic. Its fragrance also helps with fatigue and anxiety. Most of all, grapefruit essential oil nourishes the skin. It cleanses and purifies, calming irritation and balancing the skin, while boosting the skin’s immunity. It is a great aid in clearing acne and oily skin, as well as regulating the production of sebum and skin irritations. Plus, it smells amazing!

Grapefruit Essential Oil Skin Care Solutions

HollyBeth uses grapefruit essential oil in several of her products because of its many benefits. You can find grapefruit essential oil hard at work in her Marigold Foaming Facial Cleanser, a must-have for acne-prone skin. Her Body Mist utilizes the oil for hydration, while her Body Balm packs Vitamin C into the skin. A huge thank you to the grapefruit for its amazing essential oil!

Ylang Ylang Essential Oil

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What is Ylang Ylang?

Ylang ylang (pronounced e-lang e-lang) may not be an aroma you know by name, however chances are you have encountered its sweet, floral fragrance. Perfumes and skin care products use ylang ylang as an ingredient, most noteworthy the best-selling perfume Chanel No. 5.

Ylang Ylang Essential Oil

Ylang ylang oil is from the flowers of the ylang-ylang tree, which are native to the Philippines and Indonesia. Steam distillation extracts the oil from the flowers in multiple batches. The first batch is extracted an hour after the process begins, resulting in the highest quality essential oil. Several other batches are extracted at different time intervals.

History

Ylang ylang has a long history, dating back to the fairytales of the Philippines. When a couple asks the gods to give them a child, they receive a daughter named Ylang on the condition that she never know the touch of a man. One day while picking flowers, a suitor takes her hand, causing her to vanish. When a small tree begins to grow where she stood, the suitor names it Ylang-Ylang. This love myth inspired young girls to wear ylang ylang petals and spread ylang ylang petals over the bed of newlyweds.

Medicinal Use

Ylang ylang also serves medicinal purposes. The oil is used to treat malaria and other infections, also it is good for calming stress and rapid heartbeat. In modern day, the oil is used for PMS, high blood pressure, depression, sleep disorders, and also anxiety.

Perfume & Skin Care

The warm, floral aroma of ylang ylang is a staple in perfumes and skin care. Ylang ylang essential oil soothes irritation, moisturizing dry skin. HollyBeth utilizes ylang ylang essential oil in her hydrating Body Oil and Flourish® calming perfume, consequently one of my favorite perfumes of all time. These luxurious organic skin care products nourish and perfume at the same time!

Source – The Essential Oils Book

The Benefits of Cucumber

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The Benefits of Cucumber

The benefits of cucumber go beyond your salad plate. Packed with vitamins and antioxidants, cucumbers not only benefit the waistline, but also the health of your body and skin.

The Ultimate Water Fruit

Cucumbers, which belong to the same family as squash and watermelon, have one of the highest water contents of any solid food. With over 95% water content, cucumbers are extremely hydrating. Around 20% of our daily water intake comes from food, therefore eating this H2O-heavy fruit is a great way to meet your daily water intake.

Nourish the Body

Cucumbers are packed with vitamin A and C, in addition to B vitamins, potassium, and caffeic acid. These are all powerful antioxidants that reduce inflammation and also calm irritation. Combined with its high levels of water, cucumbers nourishing and hydrating effects help prevent memory loss, support a healthy digestive and cardiovascular system, relieve stress and anxiety, and also enhance the health of your skin.

Hydrate the Skin

This superfood is a great addition to your skin care regimen. Its soothing and calming effects help shrink irritated blood vessels, reducing the appearance of puffy eyes and redness. Cucumbers also fight skin irritation, aiding in the relief of sunburn and skin inflammation. And to top it all off, the extreme concentration of water and vitamin C keep the skin smooth, hydrated, and cooled.

Stay Cool this Summer

HollyBeth utilizes these amazing skin-nourishing properties in her best-selling Body Mist. This cucumber-based hair and skin refresher is the perfect addition to your beach bag. Just spritz it over your head and body to stay cool and revitalize the skin. A definite must-have for the hot days of summer.

Happy 4th of July!

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Happy 4th of July

Happy 4th of July! Time to heat up the grill, break out the fireworks, and throw a giant birthday party for America. The 4th of July became a federal holiday in 1941, however the birthday celebrations date back to the Continental Congress adopting the Declaration of Independence from Great Britain on July 4th, 1776 (though the decision to declare independence was reached on July 2).

Celebrations

Before the Revolutionary War, annual celebrations were held in honor of the king’s birthday. Parades marched in the streets and speeches of gratitude were made. After the Declaration of Independence in 1776, colonists held mock funerals for the king. They set off cannons and also fired muskets. In 1777, the first anniversary celebration of the Declaration of Independence included a thirteen gun salute, red, white, and blue decorations, and fireworks. Much like our celebrations today!

Enjoy the Party

Of the ten federal US holidays, the 4th of July is one of my favorites due to the fun and food. The excitement of summer mixed with an excuse to eat hotdogs all day (did you know Americans eat over 150 million hotdogs on the 4th!?). Furthermore, a giant outdoor party of fireworks in the name of freedom. So put on your red, white, and blue, head to your favorite fireworks viewing spot. Also put on your Citrus Spray insect repellent (we want you to have a pest-free holiday), and enjoy the party.

– Source History.com