Making lotions and things means I look for a lot of different little jars and things to put them in. Recently, I was at Michael's and I say the cutest little 4oz jars to put my face lotion in. The killer part was trying to get the adhesive off of the lid of the jar. I though Dawn could remove everything because it's "tough on grease" or whatever, but it was a waste of time. Then I asked my Great Aunt for some suggestions on how to get the adhesive off without ruining the design on the lid of the jar... I mean acetone is always an option but in the pursuit of a healthier alternative, I tried soaking it in vinegar. Sometimes the old ways are the best right? Well... that didn't work either and now the house smelled like vinegar so, I won't be trying that method again any time soon. Finally, there was a mental breakthrough when I kept saying "I need an abrasive to scrub it off" and virtually everyone has some baking soda in the fridge so there went my natural abrasive. I know that oil is the enemy of stickiness so equal parts sweet almond oil and baking soda!
Now most blogs out there will say "soak for 30 minutes then scrub off" but they were writing that for far more patient individuals than myself, so what *I* did was mix 1 tablespoon of both in a little saucer (this is more than enough for 4 4oz lids), then i used my fingers to rub the sticker with my mixture. Didn't take a minute for everything to come right off. This left me happy but also slightly frustrated that it took me 2 days to figure out something so simple. Here's hoping this little tid-bit here saves someone on the interwebz some hours in problem solving. Good luck with the sticky stuff!
Infusing oils is a far more simple process than one would think. It's basically just transferring flavor, scent and beneficial properties of herbs and spices to oils for usage in various products. These can be cooking oils, massage oils, soaps, lotions and even scent oils for aroma therapy.
The process is simple; you can use a double boiler, crock pot or an airtight mason jar that sits in the sun allowing the more volatile oils to transfer into the skin friendly and/or edible carrier oil that you have chosen to infuse. The one's I have chosen for this particular project are coffee and coconut oil.
Because coconut oil solidifies at lower temperatures, I had to put the coffee in a tea bag and leave it sitting in coconut oil inside a double boiler. Put that on medium-low heat and I let that stay on the stove for about 4 hours. Afterward it was necessary to strain the coconut oil and I placed it in the fridge in an airtight container. Now I have coffee infused coconut oil to use in my lip balms and lotions. Awesome. When infusing the oil, if you want to get the beneficial properties, it is important to keep the heat low because you can burn out all the good stuff and nobody wants that. Also, I advise using 1 part herb to 2 parts carrier oil to ensure a good consistency, smell and benefits for skin.
If you are using the method of covering plant material in a mason jar and allowing it to sit in the sun, I'd suggest using an oil that stay liquid at room temperature like vitamin E oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Olive Oil etc.. When covering plant material with the oil, you want to fill to the brim to avoid air and bacteria from collecting and mold growing in your oils. This will absolutely RUIN everything. Instead, leave sitting for 3-4 days in the sun. If the oil doesn't have the scent desired, strain the oil and replace plant material with newly harvested plants. Repeat the process until you have the scent desired. Now you have infused oils and can use them in whatever you like. Have fun!
Bella Eiko is a single mother of a 6 year old boy, freelance journalist, foodie & Civil Rights activist that is dedicated to building a better world by increasing communication & applying positive changes to her everyday life. This endeavor includes educating both herself as well as her son about sustainable living and healthy alternatives to everyday products using practical application.