How to Survive the Summer Naturally
Summer is just around the corner and has possibly even arrived depending where you are in this world.
And with summer comes heat (soooo not my favorite), sunburn, rashes, allergies, bug bites, and other not so pleasant things.
To cope, we often reach for the highest SPF sunscreen, medicated ointments, medications, insect repellents, etc. But there are other alternatives that you can use that aren't as harsh as over the counter products that more often than not contain toxic chemicals which can lead to sickness and diseases like cancer.
One resource that you can use is essential oils. Now I am not the biggest expert on essential oils, but I've used them for the past 3-4 years and know how powerful they are.
In this post, I will share with ways that you can use essential oils and how you can survive the summer naturally
Three Ways You Can Use Essential Oils
Essential oils can be used in three ways - topically, aromatically, and internally. I am going to explain to you the three ways I have used essential oils to support my health.
1 | Using Essential Oils Topically
You can apply essential oils directly onto your skin, or you can dilute it with another carrier oil, like castor oil, sweet almond oil, or even fractionated coconut oil.
Your skin is known as the second mouth of your body. Applying oils topically will make for fast absorption.
Topical application can be in the form of massages, baths, basically, anyway that it can be applied directly to your skin.
Personally, I start and end each day applying essential oils topically.
In the morning, after washing my face, I apply an essential oil to my face in lieu of a moisturizer. I used rosehip oil for many years but recently switched to Beautycounter's Lustro oils because of the rich blends they offer. I repeat this in the evening as part of my bedtime routine, after rubbing an ice cube over my face to cool my face down.
Also part of my bedtime routine is applying lavender oil to the soles of my feet. Applying essential oils where you skin is thin is one of the best ways to speed up absorption. As someone who's had a history of insomnia and waking up in the middle of the night, using lavender oil has improved the quality of my sleep.
2 | Using Essential Oil Aromatically
The second way to consume essential oils is by scent.
You can do this directly by breathing in the aroma of the oils from the bottle, or by using a diffuser to cleanse the air.
Citrus oils are great for this. I often diffuse lemon or a citrus blend during the day to cleanse the air in my home.
From time-to-time, I also diffuse lavender oil at night to calm and set the stage for sleep.
3 | Using Essential Oils Internally
Consuming essential oils internally has been known to be highly effective.
You can do this by adding it to your water, juice or smoothie; ingesting it through pill form, or by cooking with it.
Believe it or not, this is the form that I started with when I first began using essential oils.
When I started seeing my first functional medicine doctor, she gave me a bottle of lemon essential oils and advised me to add a drop or two into a warm cup of water with Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar to drink first thing in the morning. This was to help support my messed up digestive system by flushing out toxins and rebuilding my stomach acid. This Lemon Elixir has become a staple in my morning routine.
Shortly thereafter, I developed a very bad rash on my belly. At the time, we were unclear of what was causing it, but to alleviate the itching and unpleasantness symptoms, I ingested a veggie capsule that was filled with oregano essential oil. It gave me tremendous relief while we figured out the root cause of the rash.
I've since come to use peppermint and clove essential oils to clean my home, and eucalyptus essential oil as an added detoxifier in my Epsom salt baths. I continue to experiment with more new-to-me oils to enhance my healthy lifestyle.
11 Ways To Survive the Summer Naturally
You can use essential oils for the following situations this summer but also keep in mind essential oils are used for hundreds of other conditions. This is just the tip of the iceberg.
1 | Essential Oils For Allergy Relief:
Allergies affect the human body during all seasons, but due to the increased pollen, you are more likely to suffer from allergies during the spring and summer seasons. Allergies can also occur from insect bites and many other conditions.
The best oils to use for allergies are lemon, lavender, and peppermint.
I like to diffuse these scents alone and also combined with each other. I also frequently apply these oils to my wrists, back of my neck, and soles of my feet.
2 | Essential Oils for Energy:
During the summer, we are outdoors and more active. We're often at BBQs, outdoor parties, the beach, hiking - anything to enjoy the sunshine and beautiful weather. But what do you do when you are lacking in energy?
Grapefruit, lavender, lemon, peppermint, citrus-derived oils, and blends are great for increasing your energy!
3 | Detoxing Your Liver – the Root of Your Health:
You have already heard me talk about the importance of liver health and detoxification many times (and will probably do so for a long time to come!).
Detoxing your body is essential for increased energy, better sleep, improved digestion, and weight loss. This is the foundation that we should all take to improve our overall health.
4 | Essential Oils To Ease Insect Bites:
The best oils to use for insect bites are melaleuca (Tea Tree Oil) and lavender.
You can apply the oil topically, rubbing directly onto the area that was bitten ASAP. Repeat as needed every 1-2 hours. For young children or those with sensitive skin, you may want to dilute the essential oils with a carrier oil. You can also dilute the essential oil with water and use a spray bottle for easy application.
5 | Essential Oil Sunscreen:
To make a moderate sunscreen, you can add 60 drops each of helichrysum and lavender or sandalwood to a 2-ounce spray bottle. You'll want to fill the remainder of the spray bottle with fractionated coconut oil or another preferred oil method for dilution.
You can spray this on yourself and use as any store purchased sunscreen.
6 | Essential Sunburn Relief:
Well, as it happens with summer, you can also become a victim to sunburn.
The best oils to use for sunburn relief are frankincense, lavender, melaleuca, peppermint and sandalwood
You can add 20 drops each of lavender (soothing, healing) and peppermint (cooling) to a 2-ounce spray bottle. Then, fill the remainder with either water or fractionated coconut oil. Shake and apply as soon to the sunburned area. Repeat every two hours for the 4-6 times.
7 | Essential Oils for Poison Ivy or Oak:
During the summer we tend to spend a lot of time hiking the great outdoors, increasing our risk of coming into contact with poison ivy or poison oak.
If this happens to you, you can apply peppermint with frankincense essential oils directly to the affected area. If the area is too sensitive to touch you can use a spray bottle. You'll want to apply this at least three times a day until the redness and itching are gone.
Lavender is also known to heal the skin and is pain-relieving so you may want to add a couple of drops of lavender as well.
8 | Essential Oil Insect Repellant:
One bothersome aspect of summer is the bugs that seem to appear out of nowhere. And with the bugs come the insect bites. There is nothing worst than trying to deal with itching mosquito bites, am I right?!
I cannot stand the smell of insect repellants, and the thought of the nasty toxic chemicals in them make me cringe.
To avoid insects altogether, mix five drops lavender, five drops of lemongrass, three drops of peppermint, and one drop of thyme with 1 cup of water in a spray bottle.
You can also mix in a tablespoon of coconut oil and apply it directly to your skin (reapplying in four hours, or after swimming).
9 | Essential Oils In Your First Aid Kit:
For minor skin surface wounds apply lavender topically, as it is both an analgesic and antiseptic. Like cleaning any wound, you might feel a burn, but just know that it is working to clean and heal it.
Remember to always use first aid care with caution and consult a doctor like with any other condition.
Melaleuca and OnGuard (a Doterra-specific blend) is also great for cleaning scratches and scrapes.
Frankincense is another oil with antibiotic properties.
Notice how often some of these oils are used? They're so versatile and great for multi-purpose!
10 | Essential Oils for Heat Rash:
When the heat rises sweat leaving you more susceptible to rashes on your skin (and diaper rashes for your little babies).
Growing up in Hawai'i, this was a big issue for me (and my Grandma). We were always looking for the best rash cream to use, but many of them actually ended up burning our skin.
You can make an ointment using one part lavender or melaleuca with a two parts of extra virgin coconut oil to relief the itching and burning of rashes. And, it's gentle enough to use on your baby too!
11 | Essential Oils And Weight Loss:
Everyone wants to lose weight for the summer because, well, it's hot and so we bare more skin in tanks, shorts, and swimsuits!
Essential oils can enhance detoxification, thereby supporting weight loss.
Cinnamon, grapefruit, lemon and peppermint essential oils added to your cooking or glasses of water are great oils to use for this.
It is important to note that the quality of essential oils that you use are important. You want to use a brand that is pure and free of toxic and/or added ingredients. Often, store-brand essential oils can have added fragrance that is artificial and not safe for consumption.
(Sidenote: Did you know that brands are not required by law to share what exactly is in "fragrance" ingredients?! Crazy, isn't it?!)
Whether its essential oils or any other personal care product, always be a label detective and know what you are using on your body!
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Naomi Nakamura is a certified Holistic Health Coach who takes a holistic approach through functional nutrition. Through her weekly show, The Live FAB Live Podcast, coaching programs, and safer skincare solutions, she helps people with acne and other chronic skin issues clear up their skin by teaching them where food meets physiology and how food, gut health, stress, and toxins are intricately connected to the health and appearance of our skin. Naomi resides in the San Francisco Bay Area and can often be found romping around the city with her puppy girl, Coco Pop! Connect with Naomi at: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest.