Rumors Salon House Blend

Rumors Salon House Blend

One of the best parts about smell is that it has the power to transport you back in time.

Even decades.

For some that were with my mom at the beginning, they might still be swept away by the aromatic memories of a Rosemary – Rose Geranium Blend.

It’s thanks to this recipe here … that there are years of good memories with my mom in her hair salon, Rumors, where it all started for us.

But I’ll let her tell it …

Find Recipes and More in the Inner Sanctum Library

On-demand aromatherapy education to help you use essential oils in your daily life.

This inaugural recipe of the Inner Sanctum Library also imparts the history of the Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy. We share this in celebration of how it all began.

 

Sylla’s Story

RumorsIn February of 1982, I married my husband, O.V., on Valentine’s day. In the same month, I bought the salon business that I had worked at for a few years. I renamed it Rumors, in honor of Fleetwood Mac and Stevie Nicks, my obsession at the time.

Originally, I sold my collection of vintage clothes there, that I had worn and accumulated for years. I called this “Sylla’s Fancy.” (I was later known for this kind of attire—dripping lace, antique slips for dresses, layers of slips showing some lace-up boots. I loved finding something to add to my style of dressing.) Once, my friend Michael’s son (who’s now an adult) told me that when he was still a child, “I thought you were the goddess or the good fairy with your dresses.” So cute.

Pretty soon after opening, I also sold my first aromatherapy products and essential oils. Eventually, my line was called “Rumors Aromatics.” I sold oils, blends, natural perfumes, and Aveda products on the side. I also created a scent bar where my clients could sit and play with oils, to find the right scent or just smell and look.

Being the first in Tampa to offer aromatherapy, I received a bit of publicity, There were many articles and interviews in the papers, and I did talks on local TV news. Early on, my clients thought I was saying that I did “roman therapy,” wondering what the heck that might be. Now, of course, they know more than most people thanks to their early education in what was then a little-known therapy.

Rumors Signature Scent

My signature salon scent became a Rosemary and Geranium blend (recipe below). Clients would just come and sit and relax as they passed by. Others would know that they had been there due to their smiles and subtle scents. Students from the nearby University of South Florida would come to get a “study blend sniffie,” a cotton ball of Basil and Rosemary. They loved getting fresh ones for exams.

I made custom blends for massages, giving clients the remainder to “bring them back” to my table when they used them. Aromatics, aromatherapy massage, and natural facials became the rage as we became a communal gathering place for looking and feeling good. I did consults and helped a lot of people find essential oils.

My first blends included my own personal scent with a Patchouli base. This has changed yet remained the same over the years (so they say). I also made a blend for protection during meditation that includes 33 essential oils; an earthy, grounding blend with Vetiver, Patchouli, Sandalwood. Finally, there’s also the most asked for blend—our famous Rosemary and Rose Geranium House Blend.

Becoming an Aromatherapy Educator

After half a decade of playing around with oils on my own, I wanted to expand my offerings and share the knowledge I had collected. Many were also requesting classes and courses. My first classes were live, but eventually, I created the Aromatherapy Practitioner Correspondence Course for mail-order. In 1989, I created the Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy as my official educational arm, separate from the oils. A few years later, after the salon had been open for 10 years, I closed Rumors and quit selling oils.

It became clear around this time that it is unethical (illegal if medical) to make claims and sell products. I couldn’t continue to teach aromatherapy and sell oils at the same time. I had seen too many so-called educational classes in the hair industry that really only wanted to sell products. So, I moved my office and salon/treatment room to my home. From there, I devoted myself to developing knowledge and experience in this field that had become my passion. I remain here today, working out of my home, seeing clients and working in my yarden …

Recipe for the Rumors Salon House Blend:

Use a 1:2-3 ratio of Rosemary (camphor type) and Geranium, depending on the sweetness of your Geranium.

Rosemary helps open up our breathing, allowing for an awakened state, heightened senses, and an alert mind.

Geranium has always been a balancer for me and many others, most especially it seems with hormones. At least, it seemed to help in those days for a bunch of fertile females in close daily contact. We were all at different places in our cycles, so it seemed to balance out those mood swings, emotional outbursts, etc.

Mix to your preference; some Geraniums are rosier (like Rose Geranium from Reunion), and some are less rosy (Chinese type); the other cineole type Rosemary will also work, but my preference has always been the camphor type for mental effects!

 

This blend still makes those who visited or worked at Rumors remember those days with fondness and fun. We’ll never forget the deep friendships that last to this day.

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Rose and Helichrysum Face Serum

Rose and Helichrysum Face Serum

I’ve got to say that living at home does have its perks.

One plus of living with Mom is that I get to use her face serum (which also means I get to be lazy and avoid making my own).

The downside of using her face serum is that it runs out twice as fast!

Lucky for me, today she made us a new batch.

Whenever you’re blending, think about your objectives for the blend you’re making before you begin.

In this case, Mom wanted to make something a little more nourishing and protecting now that the weather has turned cold here … okay, cold for us Floridians.

So she added Jojoba and Olive Oil to her usual Fractionated Coconut Oil in the base. (Did you know Jojoba is actually a liquid wax?)

Then she chose her essential oils for pleasantness of aroma as well as therapeutic properties. Helichrysum and Rose both are great for aging skin and have a delightful aroma together.

You can also recreate this blend at home. All you need is a 1 oz. (30 mL) bottle and the ingredients above. A larger bottle works as well, you’ll just need to adjust the ingredient amounts accordingly.

Start by blending your base. We like to use 2 parts Fractionated Coconut Oil, 1 part Jojoba, and 1 part Olive Oil. We suggest blending that first before adding your essential oils.

Note: You don’t have to use multiple carrier oils, but it is a nice way to create something a little more customized. You may also have some favorite cold weather oils that you want to include or substitute instead.

Find more about how to use essential oils in skin care in the Aromatic Spa Book and Aromatic Spa eBook.

Then add your drops of essential oils. For face, we recommend a 2.5% or less dilution which equates to approximately 15 drops in your carrier base.

For this blend, we’re using a 1:1 ratio of the Rose and the Helichrysum. We used 8 drops of Rose (Rosa damascena) and 8 drops of Helichrysum (Helichrysum italicum).

Option: If you find that your skin is needing some added moisture, try spritzing it with your favorite hydrosol just before applying the serum.

I’ve been working more with mantras lately, and love connecting them to aromas. It is a simple and powerful way to connect positive thoughts to our life in a concrete way, through scent.

For this face blend I’m using the mantra, “Love is all there is.” 

Now, when I use this blend I repeat this mantra to myself.

It has become a simple ritual that helps me remember what is important, even in the face of chaos, change, and uncertainty. Give it a try and let me know how it works for you.

One thing is for certain, I’m committed to using this time at home with Mom to continue to grow in my aromatic studies. I’m glad you’re here with me too.

Did you try this blend? Make any variations? Tell us about it in the comments below. 

Want to learn at home with us?

Sign up for our Healing with Aromatherapy Course included with the Inner Sanctum Library.

Aromatic Honey for Allergy Season

Aromatic Honey for Allergy Season

Though we are all excited about the stirrings of spring, with this change of season comes … the pollen.

aromatic honey for allergy season

For Sylla, that means lots of sneezing, a runny nose, and red eyes. After a day of thinking she might be coming down with a cold, the increasing green and warmth reminds her that it’s probably just allergies. Sound familiar?

That’s why she made some aromatic honey for allergy season a few weeks ago.

Not only do the oils help us control our symptoms from the increasing pollen of the spring season, but local, seasonal honey is a great way to treat this issue as well.

Watch our video to find out:

  • Why local, raw, honey helps allergies
  • How to make your own aromatic honey
  • Plus 3 more ways essential oils can put allergy symptoms at bay

     

Aromatic Honey Blend

8-10 drops Niaouli (Melaleuca quinquenervia) -or- replace with another Melaleuca species like Tea Tree

2 drops Blue Tansy (Tanacetum annuum)

1 drop Peppermint (Mentha × piperita)

The therapeutic effects of these oils result in a honey that is anti-infectious, a decongestant, and anti-inflammatory. It’s perfect for easing inflamed sinuses and sore throats, and it allows for much better breathing.

We recommend making a big batch so you can use it in an inhaler and oil blend as well!

After watching, comment below and tell us:

  • How do you prefer your honey? On a toothpick, in your tea? What other creative ways can we use it?
  • What other oils might be good in some aromatic honey and why? (Think of other therapeutic actions you’d like to utilize internally … We use this thinking process to help our students become more confident and creative aromatherapists.)

Find Recipes and More in the Inner Sanctum Library

On-demand aromatherapy education to help you use essential oils in your daily life.

Holiday Pepper Jelly with Essential Oils: Nostalgia Kicked Up!

Holiday Pepper Jelly with Essential Oils: Nostalgia Kicked Up!

Hot Pepper Jelly is another holiday favorite that was a local homemade gift for my mom at the holidays. She always had it on hand with cream cheese and Ritz crackers. This year, my daughter Nyssa gave me some locally-made balsamic pepper jelly. I thought this would be a great time to continue exploring aromatic creations like my recent aromatic medicinal honeys.

I decided to play around and added essential oils to see what may work best.

First, I separated it into three samples and heated just slightly so it was easier to blend.

Then, I picked three oils to add. The oils I chose were: Sweet orange, Lime, and Cinnamon Bark (just for an extra kick).

I added one drop each to 2oz samples. It’s important to keep dilutions low, using only what is needed for effect. Believe me, these oils are pretty potent, so you won’t need much. And you are keeping it safe.

The results:

Lime won out!

Orange had a limonene “orange cleaner” overtone, and Cinnamon was okay. However, Lime was very refreshing with this balsamic pepper jelly. Taste-tested by my husband, we agreed that Lime wins!

To use, I spread on cracker with cream cheese. You can use any soft cheeses, like brie for example. Add it to a croissant or use as a glaze on veggies or meats!

I plan to try some other oils with my strawberry basil jam and mango lime salsa. Yum! Watch for those to come.

We encourage you to support your local jelly vendors (found at most community markets). Or if you are more of the jelly-making type, here are some links for Pepper Jelly.

Hot Pepper Jelly on Pinterest

Super Easy Hot Pepper Jelly

Let us know how it works out for you and which flavors and essential oils you like. Leave us a comment below!

More Ways to Use Essential Oils Internally—Safely and Deliciously!

More Ways to Use Essential Oils Internally—Safely and Deliciously!

We discussed aromatic honey in our internal use blog, but we wanted to expand on that and share more variations.

This includes honey, jams, and chocolate! 

You can take honey with a drop of Peppermint by the tablespoon. Or you can make a larger batch with more Peppermint, to be used sparingly.

For the larger option, keep the mixture in a closed container once you’ve added the Peppermint (or other essential oil—depending on the purpose). Blend the honey and essential oil with a ratio of 1 drop essential oil per ounce of honey. Any container will work!

Stick a toothpick or tiny spoon in the honey and suck on the end of it, or add the honey to tea or hot water when you’re stuffed up or feeling queasy.

Alternatively, you can use essential oils for different purposes like:

  • Rose for an uplifting mix
  • Lavender and Sweet Marjoram for a sleepy-time mix
  • Rosemary, Spearmint, or Lime added to a blend, or used alone for a zingy, wake-up mix.

For anti-infectious honey to help you combat colds or illnesses, choose Tea Tree (although it doesn’t have the most pleasant taste). You can also combine the “big gun” essential oils for more germ-fighting ability.

Those include Clove, Cinnamon, Thyme, and others. Be aware that these oils are also the most potentially irritant oils, and they require caution. I suggest adding in tiny amounts to avoid burning your mouth. These should only be used for fighting off infection—no long-term use!

Essential Oils in Jam

I felt inspired when my new, wonderful friend Leslie (“La Grande Jam Dame”) gifted me homemade blackberry jam with a hint of lemon. She was perfecting her culinary skills and wanted to share!

After the jam had cooled, she added an awesome touch with a couple drops of Lemon essential oil. It was such a nice, subtle lemon taste in blackberry—the best combination!

NOTE: This jam is made to be savored and eaten sparingly.

And because this is our focus, here’s a little safety information about using essential oils in recipes:

Putting two drops of essential oil in a large batch of jam is perfectly safe according to the Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) designation for Lemon oil. This means Lemon oil has been deemed safe as a food additive, to enhance flavor in minute amounts, like in this recipe.

All essential oils are considered GRAS, and it’s not an FDA approval. It’s just a list of flavorings and seasonings that are allowed in minute amounts in processed food. This does NOT mean that essential oils, extracts, etc. have nutrients or that they’re missing from our diet any more than salt or castoreum, which are also on the list.

See more info on GRAS designations here.

More Honey

Now, back to the topic at hand: Once I was inspired by the jam, I had to try creating my own honey flavoring. I already had some local, raw, raspberry-infused honey. Then I added 2 drops of Cardamon essential oil and 4 drops of Pink Grapefruit oil to 6 oz of this honey. After that, I stirred and tasted it, and WOW, what a treat!

It was an unusually tasty combo. I spread the mix on a hot croissant or nice bread with some fine cheesepreferably with cranberries! Once spread, reheat gently, then get a napkin and enjoy!

This is safe because it’s a small percentage of oil in honey1 drop per ounceand it’s made with safe, non-irritant oils. Remember, it’s an occasional treat.

Leslie provided me with this recipe (below). I thought I’d share it with all of you. It will be my next creative holiday project.

Have a CHERRY CHRISTMAS, y’all!

 

More yummy resources from our colleagues:

Spring Blend Recipe and Reflection

Spring Blend Recipe and Reflection

In celebration of the Spring Equinox, we wanted to bring you an inspirational spring-time blend.

Robbi Zeck says that Vetiver provides us with assurance and grounding; Petitgrain awakens that which is no longer stifled; and Mandarin brings the peace of composure for moving us forward.

This blend represents the support of earth with the smell of freshly turned garden dirt and roots (Vetiver). The leafy greenness of new growth (Petitgrain) opens us up to start a new journey. Finally, the soft, sweet scent of fruit (Mandarin) reminds us that rewards do come from the growth of the previous year. This is what spring shows us: out of the darkness of the earth, new life emerges.

Use this blend to help pave the way for a new emergence in your life. What will your growth look like this year? 

Dilute to 2.5% or less (approximately 15 drops of your blend in 1 oz. of carrier oil) for a face and body blend. This is great for a transformative massage session or as an anointing oil after a shower. You can also diffuse it in the environment to really get spring in the air.

While using this blend, simply repeat this affirmation:

I am supported and protected as I emerge into my new life.

We wanted to use Mandarin because it’s not phototoxic like some other citrus oils. Alternatives could be Sweet Orange (C. sinensis), Grapefruit (C. paradisi),  or even Neroli (C. aurantium). If you don’t have Vetiver, find another oil with a grounding/earthy quality. Patchouli (P. cablin) comes to mind. Tell us in the comments what your variations are. Don’t take our recipe too seriously. You can totally make up your own. We want to hear from you about what you’re blending for Spring.

Happy Spring!