Petroleum jelly or petrolatum has been a household name for as long as I can remember. This mixture of mineral oils and waxes was discovered in 1859 by Robert Augustus Chesebroug who saw the oil workers treat their burns with the gooey jelly found on the oil rigs. It is a by product of the oil industry which means it isn’t derived from a sustainable source, in other words, the manufacture thereof is not environment friendly.
The jelly is generally regarded as safe as it is refined to remove all carcinogenic substances. Unfortunately, for the average consumer, there is no way to check and see whether this is really the case. If you want to use it, you have to trust the company that sells it. Unfortunately over the last few decades, many a product that was claimed to be safe, has turned out to be the exact opposite. The original petroleum jelly, Vaseline, claims to be highly-refined, triple-purified and non-carcinogenic and non-comedogenic.
Petroleum jelly is often used to moisturize the skin. It actually has no moisturizing properties of its own, and it isn’t absorbed into the skin. It forms a barrier over the skin which seals in the body’s own moisture. This is however not the best choice as it causes a drying of the pores due to a lack of air and moisture from external sources. It also seals in any surface dirt on the skin, causing blackheads. People suffering from any skin condition, for example acne or rosacea, should avoid petroleum jelly altogether.
Luckily for us, we have some natural, DIY options.
For the base we are going to use raw beeswax and olive oil. Beeswax has anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties; it will encourage healing of any wounds. It also forms a protective barrier between the skin and the surrounding environment, but it does so without clogging the pores. Too add to the wonder, beeswax is high in vitamin A, which means that cell reconstruction is supported. This is why beeswax is a common ingredient in skin care products. Olive oil is equally impressive. The application of olive oil on the skin can block about 20% of harmful UV rays by boosting the skin’s natural sun-blocking proteins. It also contains a fat called squalene which is the skin’s most important protective fat. Olive oil moisturizes dry skin and it protects against premature ageing. All of this sounds so much better than applying a by-product of the oil industry to your skin!
- Raw beeswax (you can buy these from Isivuno)
- Cold extracted olive oil
Melt the beeswax in a double boiler. You can also add the beeswax to a glass jar and place that in a pot with cold water. Place on the stove and bring to the boil. Leave it boiling until the beeswax have melted.
Combine one part beeswax and four parts olive oil in a glass jar. Measure in volume, in other words, milliliters or fluid ounces. If for instance you measure out 10ml of melted beeswax, 10ml is your one part. You would then need to add 40ml of olive oil which is equal to four parts.
Add 1 drop of essential oil for every ml of the wax and oil mixture. Using the previous example of 10ml beeswax and 40ml olive oil, you will need 50 drops of oil (1 drop for each ml).
Leave to cool down to room temperature.
Essential Oil Suggestions
To make a powerful HEEL BALM, add equal drops of the following oils:
- Tea Tree
This minty balm will not only keep your heels soft, it is a wonderful foot treatment at the end of a long day.
To make a soothing BUM CREAM, add equal drops of the following oils:
- Tea Tree
For a nice CUTICLE CREAM that will stimulate nail growth too, add equal drops of the following oils:
Choose natural. Choose products without possible side effects.