Creating natural wildcrafted body products is one of my life’s passion and honestly, the whole process brings me so much happiness! The ability to share my crazy love of plants, the wild and pure, simple ingredients, it is an honour and helps to keep me inspired to learn, grow and play. I wanted to share some insights on ingredients and why I use them to help you choose what you feel will work best for you. Things resonate with me, how I feel about something greatly influences what I bring into my life, and as I walk the woods and create in my kitchen, I ‘feel’ what wants to work and play together, something comes in and I feel little bubbles of happiness that come up and the “yes!” that urges me on to be creative and to trust the process of inner knowing as plants jump off my shelf to be part of a new creation. Pure magick as I try to stay out of the way and let my imagination and intuition take over! The rest is just pure, simple, local- as -possible ingredients. As with all my products, I do not make any claims for healing or health benefits, I think the ingredients speak for themselves and all have well-known healing properties as antibacterials, anti-inflammatories, hydrating and moisturizing properties.
Wild plants are amazing! They are strong, wild & resistant, living freely where they best grow, in conditions that are ideal for them to thrive. The weak don’t survive. Growing in soil made by decay, plant matter, fungi, connected to a web of mycelium, full of a live force that can be challenging to recreate in a home garden. These plants are fighters and they have me in awe. The beauty, the absolutely incredible diversity and the sheer will to live. All wildcrafted plant materials in my products are harvest sustainably, by me, while out walking with my best friend Ruger, a chocolate lab. Daily we go to river beds, up mountain paths, meadows and lake sides in a vast mountain range that has the population of 300 people. In my little town where I mainly wander, there are 42 people. These plants are truly wild, away from most pollution (sadly, how can you avoid it entirely?) with little to no contact with domestic animals or other humans. This is why it is so important for me to harvest sustainably, visiting many different sites over many days to harvest. If there is a shortage of a particular plant I am harvesting one season, I will not harvest it. Did you know that when harvesting wild rose petals, for example; take no more than 2 petals per rose or it will not form a rosehip which is a vital fall and winter food for bears, birds and insects? When I run out of my wildcrafted plant material…that’s it. Until next year that is! So, my main recipe for products may stay the same, but the wildcraft ingredients are always changing, following the seasons, as it should be.
I am an Aromatherapist for over 18 years and they are an integral part of my daily life. Most of my products contain essential oils and are all listed in the ingredients of each product. I choose my oil mixes carefully, always with intention and mindfulness as I create each and every product with a specific feeling in mind. The oils can have a different affect on the body, mind and spirit and I feel it is best that the essential oils enhance the product rather than become the product, they are also volatile and will evaporate over time. No artificial fragrances, perfumes or dyes are ever used in any of my products so the fragrance of my products are faint and never overwhelming to let the true wildcrafted ingredients shine through! Green Valley Aromatherapy has been my supplier for 18 years, they are a small Vancouver Island company, have a great selections and are super knowledgeable and passionate about what they do. (www.57aromas.com)
Organic Cocoa Butter
Ok, it’s true! The main reason why I use cocoa butter is that is smells divine! It adds a rich, smooth, velvety component to any product, melts on contact with the skin and has a faint, irresistible scent of chocolate that I just love. Mix that in to anything and well…I have had someone ask me what I was wearing because I smelled so good they wanted to lick me; thankfully they didn’t but point taken. 🙂
Organic Coconut Oil
You can eat it. It’s super good for you. It is melty, moisturizing goodness and has a faint, yummy smell of coconuts. Coconut oil also melts quickly when in contact with the skin, leaves your skin soft and slightly glowing and a great oil to use for salves and balms. I use edible organic coconut oil for all my lip balms and butters, for the handmade wildcraft soaps I use organic coconut oil from Voyageur Soap and Candle who reassured me it is ethically sourced and comes from farmers who care about the environment and use sustainable harvesting practices. One draw back to coconut oil is that it is not produced locally so the best I can do it to make sure it comes from the best place possible from a company with ethics and integrity. (www.voyageursoapandcandle.com)
I don’t use it! Have you seen the pictures of raging fires in tropical jungles? Yikes! I have done some research and I just feel that palm oil has been overused, abused and is too cheap to produce that big businesses are making way too much money to care about the long term negative effects of growing this product.
Organic Castor Oil
It is rich, sticky, thick and glossy. How can it not be good for your skin? I love the shine and sheen I get when I smear some on my lips or rub a drop between my hands and work through my hair. I used to use a castor oil pack and a hot water bottle on my tummy when I had bad cramps and it always felt so good, so healing and nurturing, so I have a soft spot for this oil as it comforted me through some rough days. Enough said.
Oh that beautiful golden wax created by the amazing busy bee! Bees use that stuff to create homes for their babies, keep them safe from bacterial attacks, to hold moister so the pupa’s don’t dry out. I have a couple different sources for beeswax, some from local beeswax from beekeepers that I melt and strain myself or I purchase from Voyageur Soap and Candle. They seem like good, honest people and always seem to have the answers for all my questions and concerns regarding great ingredients.
The texture of this stuff is slightly fluffy and airy, it comes from the seed of a fruit and there is something irresistible about it. It doesn’t have a particularly strong scent, is creamy, absorbs quickly into the skin and leaves my hands feeling soft and supple.
This is animal fat. It is one of the oldest forms of skin hydration and healing as it is (obviously) the most similar to our own fats and oils our skin needs to be healthy. I ONLY use tallow from free ranged, grass fed cows or from the venison we harvest every year hunting. Fat stores all the toxins that are held in our bodies so if I don’t have either of these handy, I don’t make tallow soap.
My beautiful, much loved backyard hens provide me with incredible eggs from happy chickens. I use egg yolks in my Yolk soap and I love love love that my chickens are part of this process! Their beautiful eggs get to mingle and play with wildcrafted plant materials and rich, healing oils in an old fashioned soap recipe that creates a richer, softer, lather that is great as a body and shampoo bar.
Eco-Soy Massage Wax
I am in love with making candles! They are the perfect vessel for me to play, to inspire, create intention, work my magick! This eco-soy blend from Voyageur Soap and Candle (which by the way is a local, Vancouver based company which is super important to me as well) is easy to work with, versatile and I love that it is a candle wax AND a massage medium that feels great on your skin.
Eco-soy wax has a lower melting point so you can safely use the melting wax as a moisturizer, a sensual warm massage for your lover…you get my drift. I recently had a friend purchase a candle on her way to a social gathering and decided to light her Spring Equinox candle as they were sitting around the table and shared that the candle was also a moisturizer. From what she said, it created quite a buzz and everyone (including the guys) were soon dipping their fingers in the candle, massaging it in to cuticles, hands and elbows and were loving it! I love it. How great is that, like a candle fondue party.
I think that is pretty much it! If I missed something or you have any questions I would love to hear from you! Be kind to yourself and the planet and as always, happy harvesting!
P.S. I am sharing information on Voyageur Soap and Candle and Green Valley Aromatherapy by free will only! These are companies I trust and great resources for more info on natural body products.