Natural health, beauty and fashion

Organic skincare for your tattoos.

Chloe's recipe for homemade plant-powered vaseline.

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The joy of making it yourself…

As of Tuesday, I’ve officially become a lay herbalist. All it took was an hour of experimental dabbling in the kitchen, and I’d produced my first batch of Homemade, 100% Organic Vaseline Substitute. I was glowing with the undiluted pride of a five-year old brandishing a Crayon Masterpiece. All joking aside, this small pot of plant-powered skincare is simply the easiest, most satisfying step I’ve ever taken in aligning my business to my personal ethics. 

Ritual

 

Pocket wisdom 

The reason I’m making cosmetic products at all is that I make plant-centered, ritualistic tattoos. This means that I respect the ancient belief that a tattoo is an open door, an invitation for a specific energy to come and walk by our side. Whether it’s your mother’s favourite flower or that seashell you brought back from your travels, I’d found we often turn to local fauna and flora to symbolize important turning points of our lives. We’ve built special relationships with them, and as with our friends, we trust them to guide and witness us as we change and grow. To nurture my own bond with plants I spend time volunteering in farms, meditating in forests, and obsessively cart around a prized plant Bible called the Book of Herbal Wisdom, from which I will reverently quote like a poet reciting Rumi’s verses. I use organic inks and can be found conversing with sparrows and rose bushes.

 

So imagine my dismay when I realized that vaseline, which I use every day in my work, is actually derived from petrol. Yes, better late than never indeed, as we French people say. I perused the products I used routinely, the standard-issue hospital-grade disinfectants, with their impenetrable lists of letters, numbers and didecyldimethylammoniums. A quick google search later, I decided there were at least three products I could make myself, with organic products already sitting in my kitchen.

 

Here is the recipe I followed – it is not vegan, because I’ve worked with bees, and I’m too sentimental to resist the delight of inviting their special brand of magic into my work. Tweak at will.

Chloé’s Plant-Powered Vaseline

home made vaseline ingredients

  • 6 teaspoons organic, yellow beeswax (i used pellets, they are really easy to melt, and read that the white ones are bleached)
  • 1/4 cup organic coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup organic olive oil
  • Small metal or glass bowl
  • Small saucepan
  • Small sealable glass container
  • Essential oil(s) of your choice

Home made vaseline being mixed

Sterilize your clean glass container by popping it into the oven at 140°C for 15min – the cap can go in some boiling water. Put the beeswax, olive oil, coconut oil in the bowl and sit the bowl in a saucepan holding a cup-full of water. Bring the water to a simmer and wait for everything to melt (and then give it a couple more minutes, mine had some little beeswax crumbs because I was excited and whisked it off the heat too fast). Put about 15 drops of your essential oil(s) (research the appropriate quantities) in the container just before pouring in the mixture, then immediately stir it all together with clean spoon/chopstick. You’re done!

 

 

Treating my tattoos

I used lavender because of its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory properties – get creative, the possibilities are infinite. I’ve used it on my latest tattoo and find it also works really well as an after-care cream. The thick texture keeps it happily moisturized for hours – I’m making more so my clients can have their own. It also works like a charm on my sensitive hands and skin in this cold weather. Have I mentioned its heavenly perfume? It’s heavenly. Plant-powered sensuous ecstasy at its best.

rubbing vaseline on a new tattoo

My next experiment will be hand disinfectant. I’m really excited to keep exploring how many daily products we can make ourselves at low cost and with organic, locally-sourced materials. The power of local plants over our minds and bodies is as old as our oldest fairy-tales. They shape our land, shape our lives, and fill our days with poetry.

Feel the need to de-clutter your bathroom cabinet to make room for organic beauty products? Try the KonMari organisation method.

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