Healing Calendula Balm for Face and Body

Homemade calendula salve

In 2015 I started experiencing perioral dermatitis and this calendula balm saved me. I would break out in this horrible inflamed rash around my mouth, my nose and even around my eyes. I was embarrassed to teach class or go out in public.

The doctors don’t really know what causes perioral dermatitis, but they do know that steroid creams make it worse. I fortunately was warned about using steroid creams, so I never went that route. Instead, I went the holistic route. I changed my diet (goodbye sugar), changed my toothpaste (goodbye flouride, carageenan & SLS), and I changed my skincare routine (goodbye makeup). I said goodbye to a lot during this period. The biggest game changers for me were getting rid of carageenan (it’s in everything… even that “healthy” coconut milk) and using calendula balm on my face.

I originally used Weleda’s Calendula Baby Face Cream, but it was a little too greasy for my skin. Last year I had the opportunity to host a yoga retreat at Itha108 in Greece and the owner made this lovely face balm as a gift for us to take home with us. I now prefer this natural version over Weleda.

This healing Calendula balm blends all the wonderful properties of coconut oil, jojoba (or olive or grapeseed oil), calendula (marigold flowers), beeswax, and lavender essential oil. You’ll want to use the best ingredients that you can afford. Coconut oil has antimicrobial properties, calendula is an anti-inflammatory and beeswax soothes while it helps hold moisture in the skin.

Calendula Oil 

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. In a clean mason jar with a proper sealing lid combine your calendula flowers with the oil to be infused. Make sure that the oil completely covers the flowers.
  2. Seal up your jar and place it in a cabinet. Allow the flowers to “steep” in the oil for about 2 months.
  3. After two months strain the flowers from the oil and discard the flowers.
  4. Store your calendula oil in the fridge until ready to use.

Calendula Balm 

Ingredients

homemade calendula balm

  • 2 Tablespoons Calendula Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons beeswax
  • 5-10 drops lavender essential oil (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a double boiler melt beeswax and coconut oil. Simmer until beeswax has completely melted. This can also be achieved by microwaving the two together.
  2. Once the coconut oil and beeswax are melted quickly add in the calendula oil and stir.
  3. Add the lavender essential oil last. Stir again.
  4. Pour your calendula balm into small clean jars and allow to solidify.

I usually store one or two jars in the fridge and keep one out in the bathroom.You can use this balm daily or as spot treatment. I’ve used it after too much fun in the sun, on bug bites, and cracked skin. One ounce lasts me a couple of months. These are great for traveling or for gifts.

7 Essentials for the Traveling Yogi

Whether it’s your first trip out of the country or your 100th I think we all figure out what our “must have” items are pretty quickly. I thought I would share some of mine with you. Here is a curated lists of my favorite travel essentials for the traveling yogi. Combining all of these into a sweet little gift bag would be an awesome gift for a friend or partner heading off to go on a yoga retreat or yoga teacher training.

Essential Oil(s)

essential oil for yoga

I bring essential oils with me every time that I travel… seriously! Here are some of my faves:

  • Lavender- calming and relaxing, antiseptic properties
  • Lemongrass- repels bugs & helps relieve gas
  • Grapefruit or Bergamot- uplifting and energizing
  • Tea Tree- antibacterial & antifungal
  • Clary Sage- balancing & helps relieve gas
  • Peppermint- Helps an upset stomach
  • Favorite pre-blended oils like Doterra OnGuard (keep those nasty germs away!)

I’m not a Doterra rep, but they make awesome therapeutic grade essential oils. Contact Toni at BarefootBlissYoga.com if you’d like to place an order.

Traveling Yoga Mat

manduka yoga mat

I use a Manduka Travel Mat. It has been a wonderful investment. Since I’m always on the go I love that it packs down small. It’s perfect for a home practice or to provide a barrier between me and a yoga studio rental mat.

Body Spray/ Mat Spray

body-spray-mat-spray

Long travel days sometimes mean not having time to freshen up. I like to create a custom blend of essential oils in water in a little bottle. I can spritz it on my face, my underarms, my yoga mat for a quick freshen up. It’s not perfect, but it always makes me feel a bit more human. If you’d prefer to purchase a pre-made spray I’ve enjoyed this one by Buddha Nose.

Neem Face Mask

face-mask

 

I live in the high desert of Oregon where it is dry all year round, but my traveling often brings me to hot humid destinations and my skin hates the transition going back and forth between ultra dry and humid. If I’m leading a retreat I need simple and effective skincare. I have no time for frivolous things. I bring a little mini pot of my Theraneem neem face mask with me always!

Calendula Face Cream or Balm

calendula

Calendula is wonderful for combatting inflammation. When I was dealing with perioral dermatitis I used it religiously day and night. Calendula is nice and gentle for sensitive skin (which I have) and can be used on your face and even on sunburns if you’re in a bind and forgot aloe. I’m currently using a homemade calendula balm similar to this product by MJ’s Herbals. When I’m at home I use Weleda’s Baby Calendula Face Cream. It’s a bit richer and perfect for the super dry air here.

Spotify

headphones

Playlists, radio, all your favorites and tons of music to discover and it works outside of the U.S. too. And you can follow your favorite teachers and their playlists. Music for the beach, for lounging by the pool, for relaxing, and for your yoga practice all in one. I’ve been using Spotify for two years now…. and I haven’t gone back to Pandora (at least not regularly). Follow me on Spotify.

Smartphone stocked up with Podcasts

iphone

Over the past year or so I have really gotten into Podcasts, particularly for long haul flights and long distance drives. I like that they’re more than just entertainment, they’re educational too. Interested in checking out a new podcast? Take a peek around our blog in the next couple of days. I will be posting my faves shortly.

Yogis what would you add to this list? I’d love to hear it!

Love and Light,

Autumn

Autumn Adams
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Autumn Adams

Owner, Founder, & Retreat Leader at Ambuja Yoga
Autumn founded Ambuja Yoga in 2014 to share her love of adventure, yoga, and travel with her fellow yogis. Ambuja Yoga has morphed into more than she could have ever dreamed and she is thrilled to have a "job" she loves. She is forever grateful for the opportunity to facilitate personal growth and self love through yoga while taking yogis to off-the-beaten-path destinations worldwide. Follow Autumn on Instagram @autumnadamsyoga.
Autumn Adams
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