Amanda’s note: Please welcome another contribution to Fresh Bites Daily by Ramya Venkateshwaran. We found Ramya writing in India from her website WildTurmeric.net and we were captivated by her story. We share many things in common with her and I know you do too, particularly her love of the herbs and spices growing around her in her village in India. She collects them and uses them in her cooking and in her health regimens, as many generations have before her.
Massage has been practiced for centuries all over the world and is an important part of Indian culture. Massage offers many health benefits, if done regularly. It relaxes and help us unwind after a long hectic day and a good body massage is the best treat that I can think off. You don’t have to go to an expensive spas to get a massage done. It can be done in the comfort of your own home, with your own homemade massage oils. Though we get a variety massage oils in the market, nothing can compete with your own custom made, chemical free massage oils that can be made easily at home.
This hibiscus massage oil is very effective in treating dry skin and leaves your skin smooth and supple. Hibiscus is a natural emollient — it will moisturize your skin by reducing evaporation — giving a youthful appearance to the skin. I always have hibiscus plant at home and use it extensively for all my homemade preparations. When choosing hibiscus flowers, try to get the single layered, red hibiscus variety for best results. (This is the variety commonly sold dried in the United States.)
This hibiscus massage oil can be custom made to suit your skin. I have used homemade virgin coconut oil as a base for making this oil. Extra virgin olive oil, almond oil, jojoba oil, and grape seed oil are also good choices to use a base for making this oil. If you like, you can use a combination of these oils too. Some good combinations of base oils are almond and olive oil, grape seed oil and olive oil, etc. This massage oil also has essential oils. I like a lavender – chamomile blend as this combination works great for relaxing the body. If you have a particular liking for any of the essential oil blends, add that to the oil. To make this oil, collect fresh hibiscus flowers, wash, separate the petals and sun dry till there is no moisture left. If you don’t want to sun dry, you can even pat them gently using a kitchen cloth to remove the moisture. Add the petals to the base oil and heat it using a double boiler for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from fire, strain, let it cool and then add the essential oil blend. To use, massage this oil all over the body before bath at least weekly twice.
I prefer to use fresh hibiscus flowers for making this oil. Before adding the flowers to the base oil, make sure there is no moisture left on the petals.
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Capture the fragrance of your favorite flower and keep it in your pocket
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A rose-based facial toner with a variation for dry skin (in a lesson from India)
Make fragrant herbal “flower waters” that cost $5/ounce, with this stove top hack
Perfume Bottles For Your Essential Oils
Join the 3-Day Weight Loss Challenge!