How to: Thai Herbal Massage Ball (Valentine’s Day Fun!)

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We love anything romantic and Valentine’s Day is really just an excuse for pure, unadulterated romance.  Over the years we have shared our tutorials for sexy ribbon panties and our heart garland.  But this year we are sharing perhaps our favourite tutorial ever.

These Herbal Balls are a dream and a wonderful surprise for your lover on Valentine’s Day…. I spent five days in Kuala Lumpur having time out by myself a few years ago and had a two hour massage with these balls each day. Bliss. I still dream of that holiday.

I finally decided to make some and share the love with you. These balls take massage to a whole new level.  They are surprisingly easy to make.  When I made this batch I made four with the ingredients I had, used one and froze the rest.   You can use each ball three to four times.    What a romantic treat for V-Day!  A massage with one of these is bound to please!

Ingredients

IMG_8649 1 handful Kaffir Lime Leaves

4 Lemongrass stalks

1 large root of Galangal (Thai ginger)

1 large root of Ginger 1 large root of Turmeric root

1 handful Mint Rind of 3 Limes Rind of 1 Lemon

Materials

A good knife A food processor (use a knife to finely chop if you don’t own one) Unbleached

Calico Elastic hair tie or rubber bands

Scissors

1. Chop the roots and lemongrass into small chunks.  Rinse the kaffir lime leaves and mint in water.

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2. Cut the rind from the limes and lemons (keep the fruit in a bag in the fridge for cooking)

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3. Place all ingredients into a food processor on high for two minutes or until all the ingredients are finely chopped and mixed together. (Ahhhh the amazing aroma….. take a moment to enjoy).

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4. Rip or cut a 30cm square of unbleached calico and place a 3/4 cup of the ingredients into the middle.

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5. Gather all four corners of calico together and wrap the calico tightly over the herbs.

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6. Tie an elastic hair tie or band around the fabric, wrapping the herbs as tightly as you can into a ball.

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7. Rip a one inch strip of calico and secure it on top of the ball with a knot.  Wrap the stalk with it tightly and secure with another knot.  The stalk needs to be firm enough to get a good grip.

IMG_8692  Now you are finished your Thai Herbal Ball.  There are two things left to do.  Before you use it go and watch a video on Youtube about how to massage using one.

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Then, when you want to use it, microwave until it is warm and the oils and aromas fill the room.  This is amazing,  it is the most relaxing massage I could imagine.

If you like this, Pin it and if you like us, then Like Us on Facebook and spread the Valentine’s Day love…..

How To: Skincare Routine for Your Face (Chemical-Free, Organic, Good Enough to Eat)

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Having beautiful, soft glowing skin on your face makes you feel wonderful.  One of the best gifts to yourself during the silly season is the gift of beautiful skin.  It makes you feel confident and helps you to look wonderful during photos and at functions.

Our motto is “If you can’t eat it, don’t put it on your skin”.  Your skin is your biggest organ and needs to remain healthy.  My skincare routine has changed dramatically in the past few years as I have stopped using chemicals.  And my skin looks much better and feels much softer.  It is easy to be seduced by fancy products that claim to offer the world and have big price tags.  But really all your skin wants is good, healthy products and a little bit of love.

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Natural Skincare Routine

Skincare Routine for the Face

  • Oil Cleaning.  Use either organic Olive oil, Coconut Oil or Sweet Almond Oil to clean the skin.  Put some oil onto a cotton pad and wipe it onto your face, then leave it for a few seconds to soak up the dirt and start to break down your makeup.  Wipe away the oil and the grime with it.  Use different oils at different times of the year.  Olive Oil is good in winter when skin tends to become really dry, coconut oil is lovely and light for summer.
  • Face Scrub.  Scrub your face using a natural organic scrub such as our Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Scrub.  This smells delicious, wipes away dead skin cells and keeps your facing feel soft.  If you would like to mix it up you can also just use a mild lotion and mix sea salt into it as a face scrub.
  • Toning.  A very good toner for your face is Raw Apple Cider Vinegar.  After Cleansing you can mix a small amount of ACV with water and pat it onto your face.  I only do this occasionally.
  • Moisturise.  Moisturising your skin is really important.  Living in a very hot, dry climate means that skin tends to become really dry.  By far the best moisturiser I have used is our All Natural Moisturising Bars.  They smell chocolatey and lovely.
  • Peel.  Instead of a chemical peel I use the trusted Bicarbonate Soda.  Just mix a small amount of Bicarb with water and cover your face with it.  Leave it for a few minutes then rinse it off with water.  If it stings too much I wouldn’t leave it on for long.  You can also mix freshly squeezed lemon juice with water and apply this to your face and then rinse after a few minutes.
  • Turmeric Mask.  I do this every now and then.  Mix  some turmeric powder with some honey and place it onto the skin.  Leave it on for a few minutes and then use some sort of flour and your fingers to scrub it off.  It is sticky but your skin will glow.
  • Under-eye.  Use a little extra coconut oil for the delicate skin under your eyes.
  • The Clarisonic Mia.  This is a lovely tool to use daily.  It helps to scrub away the dead skin cells and leaves your skin glowing.  It has transformed my skin.

More tips for looking after your Face:

  • Keep your face out of the sun.  This is a necessity in Australia where we have sun for most of the year and people end up with very leathery skin.  I find the easiest way to do this is to wear a hat and big sunglasses.  You will not find me out in summer without these two things.  It also means that you will not get skin cancer which is a major concern.
  • Use a good sunscreen that has few chemicals in it.  I use a sunscreen for sensitive skin.  I use it sparingly and I prefer to use a hat to protect my face.
  • Stay hydrated.  Drinking lots of water is one of the best ways to get rid of toxins and to keep your skin looking moist and gorgeous.
  • Fish Oil.  Taking a high quality fish oil or krill oil daily will do wonders for your skin.  But by far the most environmentally friendly way to go is to eat fish like salmon three times a week (make sure it is ethically sourced).
  • Eat a rainbow.  Eat as many colourful vegetables as fruit as possible.  The goodness of fruits and vegetables is contained in the colour, so make colourful salads, roast vegies, soups anything to eat a rainbow.
  • Turmeric.  Use Turmeric as much as you can in your cooking.  It is an incredibly powerful antioxidant and will make a huge impact on your skin also.  I eat turmeric every day.  If I haven’t added it to my cooking, I take a teaspoon of turmeric with a glass of orange juice.
  • Don’t eat junk food or processed sugar.  It will leave your skin looking sallow and yuck.
  • Quit Smoking.
  • Drink alcohol moderately.

Wishing you glowing, healthy skin.  If you like this Pin it, and Tweet tweet tweet.  Keep coming back this week for loads more Christmas tutorials….

 

How To: Have Blonde Hair (Naturally)

541475_10151535615634859_545964310_n My hair has gone from being white blonde as a child and teen to darker blonde as an adult, to blonde with highlights, with a frightening black and brunette phase in between, that marked the troubling end of a relationship.
There’s no way around it.  Blonde is a high maintenance hair colour and can easily end up looking awful.  Highlighting your hair blonde is difficult to maintain and can be expensive. The way I stay blonder has changed over the last six months, since I no longer use chemicals or visit the hairdresser to have my hair chemically treated. I now have my hair cut at home by and colour it myself.
Note:  If you have dark brown or black hair, I do not recommend these tips as they may not work or may produce a terrible result. This post is really for people with dark to medium blonde hair who are just highlighting their hair, not dramatically changing its colour.

995484_10151811099959859_542730047_nTechniques to Lighten Hair Naturally

1. Mix 2 tablespoons of raw honey (which contains natural peroxide) with 2 tablespoons of Bicarbonate soda. Apply the paste to the roots of your hair first with a brush then down to the ends. Heat helps to activate the Hydrogen Peroxide, so use a blow dryer on your hair on low for about ten minutes. It can get sticky but there are no chemicals which is a serious plus. After 20 – 30 minutes, rinse hair and wash as normal. This is also a powerful conditioner and your hair will glow and be really soft. (I do this once a fortnight, especially on my roots).
2. For a more honey blonde look, follow the method in No. 1 but also mix in 1 tablespoon of cinnamon which also has powerful hair lightening properties.
3. Mix 2 tablespoons of Hydrogen Peroxide (6%) (available at your pharmacy) with a cup of water. Place the liquid into a spray bottle and spray it on your hair every few days, making sure that you do the roots first and avoid the ends. This lightens the hair gradually and tends to keep natural highlights which look great. It does have a tendency to dry out the hair so if you are prone to dry hair use it once a week only. Once again, it needs to be activated with heat so hang out in the sun or put a hairdryer on your hair for about ten minutes.
4. Juice 2 lemons and pour into a spray bottle with with a teaspoon of bicarb soda, ¼ cup water and add a vitamin E capsule (or ½ teaspoon of Vitamin E) to condition the hair. Spray onto the hair and spend time out in the sun or ten minutes with a hairdryer. If you are going to the beach and hoping to go lighter, put this in your hair before you go. Remember to condition the hair when you are finished.
5. The easiest way to go blonde is to spend a lot of time at the beach in summer. The sun and sea water act to form a powerful bleaching agent. Where we live, even those with darker hair, tend to have sunkissed highlights in summer. But this does dry out your hair and conditioning is necessary.

Techniques to Maintain your Blonde (Naturally)

Now you are blonder, this colour also requires maintenance so that it doesn’t go brassy, bright yellow or even green.

  1. Leave-In Blonde Rinse for your hair.  Boil the kettle, place three chamomile tea bags into a mug with the boiling water.  Wait for the water to cool.  Place into a spray bottle and spray on the hair after washing and conditioning it.  Don’t rinse this off.  The effects are very subtle once again.
  2. Use a homemade purple shampoo and conditioner.  Place about a teaspoon of purple food colouring for every cup of shampoo (natural and organic of course).  The shampoo will be bright purple.  Shampoo your hair as normal with your purple shampoo, but leave the shampoo on for about 3 minutes (or longer).  This is an excellent way to tone down brassiness.  I use this every time I shampoo.  You can also add purple food colouring to your conditioner and use in the same way.  Please exercise caution with this and do a strand test before you use it.  I would not want your hair to turn purple.  My hair is very porous and it has never happened to me.
  3. If you spend a lot of time in Chlorinated pools (yuck I can’t stand them), your blonde hair will tend to go green.  Mum spent a lot of time with three very blonde children (and one brunette), trying to keep our hair from going fluro green.  The best remedy is tomato ketchup.  Cover the hair, particularly the ends in tomato ketchup and leave in for twenty minutes, then wash the hair as normal.  The red counteracts the green and leaves the hair blonde again.
  4. Place a shower filter on your shower head.  I love my shower filter which filters out the Chlorine and makes sure that my hair stays blonder.  (Note: I am also highly allergic to Chlorine which is why I have the shower filter).

27121_10151571341199859_1356352631_nHow to Keep Blonde Hair Conditioned

Besides being a difficult colour to maintain, blonde hair tends to be dry. Maybe because people who are blonde tend to be fair skinned and have fair eyes and dry skin, dry hair. Blonde hair needs to receive a lot of conditioning to stay in good condition. Here are some of my favourite ways to condition my blonde hair.
1. Raw Honey Mask. As Mentioned, this also lightens the hair. Cover the hair in raw honey, place a towel in the dryer for a few minutes until it is warm and then wrap your hair in the towel and leave for half an hour. Wash the honey out, your hair will smell, feel and look beautiful.
2. Coconut Oil. I love coconut oil and have been using it on my dry hair and skin for about six years. It is amazing and is used frequently by women all over India to keep their hair in perfect condition. Cover your hair in coconut oil and wrap in a warm towel for half an hour before you wash it. Also before you go to the beach, lightly coat your locks in coconut oil. It has some sunscreen properties so will protect your hair from the sun and will keep it moisturised.
3. Olive Oil. Olive oil is great when your hair is seriously dry as in summertime. Comb a light covering of olive oil over your hair and sleep with it in. You will need to cover your pillow with a towel to protect. Or cover your hair in olive oil half an hour before you wash it. It is great for tangles in really long hair.
4. Have the ends cut regularly. About every six weeks have your hair trimmed. This will keep the ends fresh so they don’t break off.
5. Raw Apple Cider Vinegar. After washing and conditioning your hair, rinse your hair in raw apple cider vinegar and water. The ratio is 1:1. Leave it in for a minute and then rinse it off. This leaves your hair soft and incredibly conditioned.

I hope these Blonde Tips have been helpful. If you like this Pin or Tweet it. And return to One Hour Craft for more natural haircare and beauty tips. If you have anything to add, please comment on our Facebook page.