Thursday, December 3

Jasmine Essential Oil

Jasmine was originally grown in China and Northern India and the Moors introduced it to Spain. The Jasmine flower posses a strong but sweet fragrance, which is common in those flowers which bloom at night. Jasmine Essential Oil is extracted from the flowers of Jasmine and carries many help benefits such as relieving eczema, toning dry, irritated and sensitive skin and increases elasticity.

The health benefits of Jasmine can be attributed to its properties like anti depressant, anti septic, aphrodisiac, anti spasmodic, cicatrisant, expectorant, galactogogue, emenagogue, parturient, sedative and uterine.

  • Anti Depressant: The aroma is pleasing and uplifting to the mind and fights depression.
  • Anti Septic: It has very effective germicidal, bacterial, fungicidal and anti viral properties.  When externally applied to wounds it prevents it from becoming septic and checks infection from tetanus.
  • Anti Spasmodic: It gives quick relief to spasmodic coughs, cramps, congestion, asthma as well as intestinal cramps and pains resulting from spasm.
  • Cicatrisant: Jasmine oil can help with the fading away of scar marks.
  • Emenagogue: Jasmine Oil's emenagogue property is known to aide women who suffer from irregular and painful menses or menopause and the ill effects that are associated with them such as fatigue, nausea, etc.
  • Galactogogue: This property is said to help protect against breast tumors or cancer. It increases milk secretions therefore it's very good for lactating mothers.
  • Parturient: Jasmine Essential Oil facilitates and eases birth while reducing labor pains.
  • Sedative: Calms the mind, body and soul bringing forth positive emotions. Relieves anxiety, stress, depression and anger.
  • Uterine: This oil helps with uterine health buy toning it up and promoting a flow of certain hormones that ensure good health and proper uterine function. It also helps protect if from tumors especially after menopause.

Note of caution: Those who are allergic to Jasmine should avoid using it.  Pregnant women should avoid using this oil because it's an Emenagogue.

Jasmine is known to blend well with other essential oils such as Bergamot, Sandalwood, Rose, Lemon, Grapefruit, etc.

Currently the best producers of Jasmine Essential Oil are Italy, Morocco, Egypt, China, Japan and Turkey.

Monday, November 16

Hair Loss and Thining Edges

If you're losing copious amounts of hair very suddenly then you need to see a doctor early for an exam, proper diagnosis and medication if necessary.  Hair loss can happen to anyone for many reasons including, but not limited to illness, medications, work, emotional stress, thyroid disease and much more.  95% of all hair loss is attributed to Androgenetic Alopecia and it can effect both men and women although men experience a much greater degree of loss. In women it occurs over most of the scalp and appears as diffused hair loss.

Here are some ways to prevent hair loss and retain and maintain the hair that you do have.

Step 1- Avoid harsh chemicals (i.e. relaxers, bleaching, and coloring) and hair styles that pull the hair tight. Hair pulling and twisting used by many African Americans can lend themselves to hair loss and balding.  This is why it's important that African American men and women reduce the wearing of tight braids and twists.  This can lead to hair loss due to scarring of the scalp area also known as Scarring Alopecia, which typically involves the top of the scalp and is believed to be associated with persistent tight braiding of the hair.  If you're going to wear your hair in braids then ask your stylist not pull or plat them so tightly.  It's better if your came loose then to fall out.  Also consult with your hairstylist to create styles that minimize the appearance of hair loss without sacrificing your look.

Step 2 - Let your scalp breathe.  Avoid wearing baseball caps, wigs and weaves everyday (stop using glue for hair weaves).  Clogged hair follicles occur when the use of heavy conditioners or other greasy products are used on the hair.

Step 3 - Try using natural herbs and oils to help stimulate hair growth. Rosemary, lavendersage, fenugreek, Vitamin E oil and Castor oil are just some of the natural herbs and oils that are known to stimulate hair growth.  Here's a hair oil recipe that can aide in hair growth.

1/4 c Jamaican Black Castor oil or regular Castor oil
2 Tbsp Jojoba oil
1 tsp Sage, fresh or dried
1 tsp Lavender, fresh or dried
1 tsp Rosemary, fresh or dried

  1. In a sauce pot combine all ingredients and cook over a low heat for 45 minutes to an hour (this is known as an herbal infusion).
  2. Removed oil infusion from heat and let cool until it's lukewarm
  3. Drain oil through strainer or cheese cloth with funnel into applicator bottle
Note:  DO NOT shake the mixture as this causes free radicals within the oil that can cause it to go rancid.  Instead, mixing oils you want to gently roll the bottle around until all have been fully incorporated.  It's recommended that Rosemary not be used if you're pregnant, nursing, have high blood pressure or on children under the age of 2 years.

Step 4 - Incorporate more Omega 3 and Omega 6 foods, such as fish into your diet as well as drinking more water.  Eat B vitamin rich leafy vegetables and foods.  Remember that hair is made of protein and needs proper nutrition to grow. Hair loss will occur if there isn't enough protein in the diet.

Monday, November 2

Nutmeg Butter

Nutmeg Butter is extracted from the kernal of the fruite of the nutmeg tree (Myristica fragrans), a native of the Molucca Islands, but is cultivated elsewhere in the tropics.

It's a semi-solid, yellow low melting ingredients of the nutmeg fruit and contains high amounds of essential myristic acid.  Nutmeg Butter has been used to soothe skin irritations and to alleviate rheumatic pain.  It's also recommended that pregnant women do not use during pregnancy.

Friday, October 30

Nail & Cuticle Care

During the winter our nails and cuticles are more prone to becoming dry, brittle and cracked due to the lack of moisture in the air. The appearance of our nails is a good indicator of our overall health.  Nail care includes the care of our cuticles, which is the dead skin that overlaps the nail plate at the base of the nail.  The cuticle acts as a seal between the nails and the fingers and protects the body from fungus.  Ragged cuticles are an indication that your cuticles are dehydrated and in need of immediate care to restore moisture and health. By the same token too much exposure to water and/or improper trimming can result in cuts that reflect dehydration, redness and irritation.  The key to healthy nails is soft cuticles. 

Here are a few simple, homemade nail and cuticle recipes for healthier and stronger fingernails.

Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Olive oil
Warm olive oil slightly and gently massage cuticles

Lavender Olive
1 tsp Olive oil
3 drops Lavender essential oil

Healing Cuticle Oil
5-10 drops Tea Tree essential oil
2 Tbsp Sweet Almond oil

Nail Conditioner, Strengthener & Whitener
2 drops Tea Tree oil
2 drops Lavender oil
2 drops Rosemary oil
2 drops Lemon oil
2 Tbsp Vitamin E, Sweet Almond, Jojoba or Olive oil
  • Remember to always store oils in a small dark glass jar or bottle (1oz-2oz) as this helps to keep the oil longer and avoid oxidization.
  • Tea Tree and Lavender essential oils have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.
  • Rosemary essential oil moisturizes and strengthens dry and brittle nails.
  • Lemon essential oil strengthens weak nails as well as whitens discolored nails.
  • Vitamin E, Sweet Almond, Jojoba and Olive oil are excellent moisturizers and conditioners.
  • DO NOT shake the mixtures as this causes free radicals to form within the oils that can cause it to go rancid.  Instead, when mixing you want to gently roll the bottle around until all has been fully incorporated.

Thursday, October 29

Ucuuba Butter

Ucuuba Butter is native to Central and South America and is cold pressed from the seeds of the Ucuuba tree.

Ucuuba Butter is said to have anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties and is ideal for treating acne, eczema and dry or irritated skin.  Exceptionally rich in essential fatty acids, Ucuuba Butter is considered to have anti-aging properties and can be used to replenish tone and moisture to dry and mature skin. Therefore it's ideal for making pomades, creams lotions, and body butters.

Wednesday, October 28

Murumuru Butter

The Murumuru tree grows in the clay rich soils of the Amazon rainforest and can also be found on the fertile firm terrain.

Murumuru Butter is a rich butter that is a light amber color and carries a natural earthy aroma.  Its rich oleic acid content promotes nutrition and moisture for skin, hair and scalp.  It's an excellent choice for shampoos, conditioners and highly moisturizing skin care products.

Tuesday, October 27

Cupuacu Butter

Cupuacu (pronounced coo-poo-ah-sue) Butter is cold pressed, refined and filtered from the seed of the Cupuacu Tree in Brazil. This creamy, emollient butter leaves the hair and skin smooth and soft. It boasts the properties of natural moisture and elasticity. Cupuacu Butter is extrememely beneficial for dry, damaged skin and har, promoting deep, long lasting hydration. Its high water absorption capacity is due to its phytosterol levels and makes Cupuacu an effective alternative to lanolin. Cupuacu also contains a unique antioxidant phytonutrients called polyphenols, which are commonly found in plants like green tea and grape seeds.

Monday, October 26

Illipe Butter

Illipe nuts come from the Illipe tree (Shorea Stenoptera) that is native to Southeast Asia and Boreno that flowers in October through January. The indigenous people of Borneo have been making butter from the Illipe nuts for many centuries for therapeutic and cosmetic purposes. Illipe Butter is exotic and luxrious and is quite similar to cocoa butter in its triglyceride composition. Even though it is a harder butter it still melts upon contact with the skin.

Illipe Butter is renowned for its incredible moisturizing properties and its ability to restore elasticity to the skin. It is quite comparable to cocoa butter in its physical properties and composition and is beneficial for the treatment of moisturizing chronically dry skin, mature skin, sunburn, healing sores, damaged skin, rough skin, mouth ulcers and dry or over processed hair.

Friday, October 23

Mango Butter

Mango Butter is a soft, solid, tropical butter with a slight sweet scent. It's extracted from the fruit kernels of the mango tree, which is a tropical evergreen. Mango Butter has a similar composition to that of Shea and Cocoa. It melts upon contact with skin and disperses smoothly, providing a protective, emollient layer.

Mango Butter has been traditionally used in the rainforests and tropics for its skin softening, soothing, moisturizing and protective properties and to restore flexibility and reduce degeneration of skin cells. It also has a protective effect against UV radiation. It can be used as is to provide relief from the dryness of eczema and psoriasis. Dermatologists often recommend Mango Butter for treatment of wrinkles, as most people who use it will notice decreased signs of aging and the disappearance of lines and wrinkles with 4 to 6 weeks of daily use.

Grey Hair

Grey hair can appear at any age. It's not always a sign of aging, it's caused by a reduction of pigment (grey hair) or a complete loss of pigment (white hair), and the reason for it is not fully understood. Grey hair can appear yellow or greenish on many people. As we get older our hair begins to produce less melanin, the same melanin that gives our skin its color.

To counteract the yellow color and leave your hair looking good and shiny, use a grey shampoo and conditioner that has a violet base color instead of a everyday shampoo. They are made specifically for grey hair.

Thursday, October 22

Kokum Butter

Kokum Butter is rich in essential fatty acids, which aid in cell oxygenation and make nutrients more readily available for use by skin tissues. Kokum Butter contains antioxidant vitamin E and helps to regenerate tired and worn skin cells, supports skin elasticity and general flexibility of the skin wall.

Kokum Butter comes from the fruits of the Garcinia Indica Tree in India. The fruit kernels produced by this tree yields an emollient white butter. Kokum Butter is often used as a substitute for Cocoa Butter due to its uniform triglyceride composition. It melts when it comes into contact with the skin. It’s commonly used in lotions, creams and body butters, as well as soaps, cosmetics and toiletries.

Coconut Tucuma Butter Pre Poo

A week ago I did a post on Tucuma Butter and decided to experiment. Here's a Coconut Tucuma Butter Pre-poo that I created.I applied this mixture to my hair and let it sit for an hour (I have thick corse hair). Not only did I love how my natural curls popped but I really enjoyed the softness and moisture that the mixture bought to my hair.
I'll test it a few more times before putting it in the product line.

Thursday, October 15

Tucuma Butter

The Tucuma is a tree originally from Brazil, specifically the Amazon rainforest. Tucuma butter is extracted from the fruit of Astrocaryum tucuma, both of the flesh and the almonds. Tucuma butter is high in fatty acids such as lauric, myristic and oleic acid.

Tucuma butter helps to hydrate the hair and the natural content of myristic acid in this butter helps to soothe the scalp. It also contains a high concentration of vitamin A that helps to nourish and add a natural gloss to dry, damaged hair and is excellent for softening the skin.

Monday, October 5

Butter History

About 90% of Decadent Butters products are butter based. I use a variety of butters (and oils derived from these butters) in my products. Over the next week or so I'll dedicate a post to each butter that explains their origins and their benefits.

So keep an eye out for information the following butters.

  • Shea
  • Kokum
  • Illipe
  • Mango
  • Caupacu
  • Tucuma
  • Murumuru
  • Nutmeg
  • Acai
  • Ucuuba
  • Cocoa

Saturday, October 3

Autumn/Winter Skin Care

Summer is officially over and the autumn/winter season is upon us, which means you have to revise your skin care regimen. You want to aide your skin in adjusting to the change in season, and that means taking care of your skin both inside and out. Remember, what you put into your body will eventually show through your skin.

Be sure to drink enough water to keep your skin hydrated. Just because the weather is a little cooler doesn’t mean your body doesn’t require the same amount of hydration. Dehydrated skin looks dry, tired and is prone to more wrinkling.

Moisturizing your skin is just as important as hydrating the skin from the inside. The best time to moisturize your skin is right after a bath or a shower. The skin absorbs some of the water from the bath and is ready to have that moisture sealed in. Use a natural oil or butter such as virgin coconut oil or shea butter for overall moisture.

Vitamin D
Vitamin D is essential for good looking skin and overall body health. During the summer we normally get a lot of vitamin D from sunlight but as the days grow shorter and you’re indoors a lot more than you are outdoors, it’s important to keep adequate levels of vitamin D in your body. You can do this by taking a vitamin supplement or eating fruits and vegetables that are enriched in vitamin D.

So this Autumn/Winter season make sure to take care of your skin by keeping it hydrated and moisturized.

Tuesday, September 1

Male Skin Care 101

Here are some quick and easy steps to male skin care.

Body Care

Moisture is the key to smooth skin and a youthful appearance. There are some key ingredients you want to look for in any moisturizer, which should be at the beginning of the list, are jojoba oil, shea butter, and olive oil. Jojoba is a vegetable wax that it is absorbed quickly into the skin; it seals in the body’s natural moisture and does not leave an oily residue behind.

Shea butter works a lot like jojoba but is thicker, like a heavy cream whereas jojoba is liquid. Both ingredients accomplish the same thing; they keep your skin from drying out.

When warmed up olive oil is a wonderful ingredient for applying to work-roughened hands. It helps to soften your cracked cuticles and scratchy calluses. Although olive oil will leave an oily residue you can wash with gentle soap then apply jojoba oil to damp hands to provide a protective layer.

Be careful of products that list water as the first ingredient. When it comes to skin water is not a moisturizer, it actually dries out your skin, especially hot water. I’m sure you’re familiar with that dry, stretched feeling your skin gets when you forget to moisturize after showering. The perfect time to apply moisturizer is immediately after you step out of the shower. It leaves the skin feeling smooth, hydrated and looking healthy.

Facial Care

Proper face care is essential especially after shaving. Here are three highly beneficial steps for the guy who wants to take care of his face.


It’s important to clean the skin at least twice a day to remove any dirt and/or impurities. Be sure to use a face wash that is going to work well with your skin type.


Exfoliating the skin removes dead skin cells and when you exfoliate before shaving it makes for a more comfortable shave and prevents razor burn.

Tone and Moisturize

Most after shaves are made up mostly of alcohol which dries out the skin so you want to look for a moisturizing after shave that safeguards the skin from dehydration. A good toner will contain skin friendly ingredients such as aloe and omegas, which helps to sooth skin of against any irritation.

After about a week or two of this regimen you’ll notice a marked improvement in your skin.

Tuesday, August 11

Lavender Amber Body Butter

So I'm completely late on this post (originally to be uploaded on 6 August 2009) but here it is. Here's last night's new creation Lavender Amber body butter.
This is a shea butter based butter mixed with jojoba oil, lavender water, vegetable glycerin and a few other natural goodies. It smells wonderful, glides on smoothly and leaves the skin feeling smooth and moisturized.

Sugar Lemon/Lime Facial Scrub

Here's another quick, easy and budget friendly facial scrub. The juice from the lemon/lime refreshes and tones the skin while the sugar acts as a natural alpha hydroxy.

Sugar Lemon/Lime Facial Scrub
Sugar (raw or organic)
Juice of a lemon or lime

Mix the sugar with the juice of a lemon or lime. Start out with a tablespoon of sugar and keep adding until you get the desired consistency you're looking for. You can also add a teaspoon or two of hemp seed or almond oil (or the oil of your choice) this will give your face added moisture. Apply to your face by rubbing in circular motions to exfoliate the skin. Rinse with warm water.

Tuesday, August 4

Exfoliation Made Easy

When you notice that your skin is looking dry, dull and ashy it's time to exfoliate. Sugar and salt make great and inexpensive exfoliants. Sugar, salt or a combination of the two with a little bit of carrier and essential oil makes a wonderful exfoliant for removing dead skin. Removing that dull and ashy skin revitalizes and moisturizes new skin, soft skin.

Field & Sea Body Scrub
3 Tbsp Kelp powder
3 Tbsp Oatmeal
3 Tbsp Orange peel, grated
3 Tbsp Sea salt or Demerara sugar
3 drops Grapefruit essential oil
1-1 1/2 cup Sweet Almond oil

Mix all dry ingredients with essential oil in a jar. Add in sweet almond oil and mix until it reaches desirable consistency.

Please note: You can adjust the amounts and ingredients at your own discretion. If you have or a history of high blood pressure then it's recommended that you use sugar instead of salt.

Monday, August 3

Herbal Infusions

Here are some simple herbal infusions that you can do in your own kitchen. After boiling the infusions for an hour I let them sit in a dark closet or cabinet anywhere from 2-6 weeks. These oil infusions can be used in various hair and body products just be sure you drain the herbs from the oil before using. Please note that you can substitute apple cider vinegar or water (distilled or floral) in place of the oil. Here's a great video on infused herbs.

Here's a recipe for a sage rosemary infusion. Remember you can adjust the amounts to your liking. Also you can grind these herbs into a powder by using a coffee grinder or food processor if so desired.

2 Tbsp Sage
2 Tbsp Rosemary
1 1/2 tsp Burdock Root
1 tsp Nettle
1 tsp Lavender
1 tsp Hibiscus flower powder
1/3 cup Coconut oil
1/3 cup Rice bran oil
1 cup Jojoba oil
1/3 cup Avocado oil
  • Makes 8 oz.

Here's a recipe for a lavender mint infusion.
1/2 cup Lavender flower buds
3 Tbsp Mint
1/2 cup Coconut oil
1/2 cup Jojoba oil
  • Makes 16 oz
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