Woo hoo! I've been experimenting with period and modern cosmetics of just this type.
Grapeseed is the base. It has a high natural Vit. E content for preservative, and it absorbs the fastest. "Apricot Kernel Oil (Prunus Armeniaca) is smooth and lightweight, high in Vitamin A and minerals. Apricot Kernel Oil has an excellent texture that is great for all skin types, but preferred by many practitioners for the benefits that it renders for prematurely aged skin and skin that is dry and irritated. " You can also raid your fridge for other oils (and ALL oils should be stored in your fridge to minimize oxidation), such as olive, seasame, and sunflower.
"Olive: Most people are familiar with olive oil as a cooking oil, but it is occasionally used for massage. It is a heavy oil with a greasy or sticky texture and recognizable aroma that many associate with cooking, so it's usually not used on its own for massage.
One study compared topical olive oil with sunflower oil and found that olive oil had no effect on epidermal barrier function, whereas topical sunflower oil resulted in significant improvement in the skin barrier." http://altmedicine. about.com/ od/massage/ a/massage_ oil.htm
"Sesame Seed Oil has been used as a healing oil for thousands of years. Sesame oil is mentioned in the Vedas as excellent for humans. It is naturally antibacterial for common skin pathogens, such as staphylococcus and streptococcus as well as common skin fungi, such as athlete's foot fungus. It is naturally antiviral. It is a natural anti inflammatory agent. " http://www.youthing strategies. com/qualities. htm
Now, if you are looking at something period, I'd go with a scented perfume oil, something to put in hair and body and bath. I'd use an olive base, since it's a period trade item, and experiment with the right amount of Jasmine and Ylang for a pleasant scent. Both those oils are period trade. Unless you want to get really wacky and press fresh flowers between layers of crushed almonds yourself, for period perfumery. But that's pretty hard core...
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Monday, June 30, 2008 2:10 PM
Subject: [SCA-Herbalist] Massage oils?
I was gifted with the items from someone else's unfinished project. I have 16 oz Apricot Kernel Oil, 16 oz Grapeseed Oil, 1 fl oz Jasmine Oil, .5oz Ylang Ylang essential oil and 8 small brown bottles with dropper lids. I THINK the intent was to produce 8 small bottles of scented massage oil. I'd like to make something with all this to present to the Queen for her royal gifting stash. What can/should I do with it? If I am to add the scented oil to the unscented oil, which would be best used and in what ratios?
Help, culinary herbs I know, this is out of my bailiwick.
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