• Cleansing wipes – why we should avoid them

    By Amy - Green People Posted March 26, 2014
    Comments4

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    Let’s face it, we all dread that time of the evening when we have to take of the day’s make-up and grime in preparation for our much-needed beauty sleep. For many, cleansing wipes are a bathroom essential: they’re convenient, cheap and most importantly quick.

    The sales of cleansing wipes have doubled in recent years and our skin is not happy about it.

    Cleansing wipes contain huge amounts of chemical components to keep them moist, effective and preserved. Surfactants and emulsifiers are some of the nasties which you'll find in your cleansing wipes.

    These all help with dissolve and lift make-up, oil and dead skin but without rinsing those ingredients off, you run the risk of leaving grime residue on your skin and subjecting your poor skin to an array of irritating chemicals that will sit on your skin, then potentially be absorbed into your blood stream while you sleep. Yuck!

    Eye care

    When using a cleansing wipe it’s easy to get into the habit of rubbing the wipe vigorously to remove a bit of stubborn eye make-up. The skin around your eyes is extremely delicate, the rubbing motion alone will drag the skin and could cause premature ageing, let alone what potential damage the ingredients could cause.

    As well as irritation, high levels of alcohol can also cause extreme dryness and premature ageing. Always be extra careful around the eye area and when applying creams tap, don’t rub. This will stimulate circulation and reduce dark circles and puffy eyes.

    Acne and blemish-prone skin

    If you’re prone to spots or acne, a good daily beauty regime is extra important. You may think you like that dry-skin feeling you get after using a cleansing wipe – especially if you’ve got oily skin.

    But drying out your skin won’t improve acne – it can actually make it worse as your skin will produce more sebum to compensate. Feed your skin with skin friendly ingredients like Rosehip, Black Willow Bark and Green Tea – all of which can be found in our anti-blemish range.

    Sensitive skin

    Those who wear contact lenses and those with dry or sensitive skin need to be extra vigilant with their skin care routine and avoid cleansing wipes at all costs. While they are convenient for our busy lives, cleansing wipes are full of nasties that can irritate your skin.

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    Moist environments are the perfect breeding conditions for bacteria, so cleansing wipes need a high amount of preservatives to keep them free of nasty bugs. These preservatives can be extremely irritating to even the toughest of skin so if you suffer from any sort of skin condition it’s best to stay well clear.

    Worryingly, the preservative methylisothiazolinone, or MI, which can cause swelling, rashes and blistering, is often found in cleansing wipes – shockingly it’s even found in baby wipes. Read more about MI.

    Those nasties you need to watch out for:

    • Methylisothiazolinone
    • Parabens
    • Alcohol denat (ethanol or ethyl alcohol)
    • Triclosan

    Why cream cleansers are better

    Face wipes will only remove impurities from the skin’s surface, and so have no other skin benefits but Green People’s Gentle Cleanse moisturises and conditions your skin at the same time, and carries far less risk of irritation.

    Our Gentle Cleanse gently removes all eye make-up including waterproof mascara, cleansing away the day's impurities and leaves your skin silky smooth, it's alcohol-free and rich in moisture-binding and anti-inflammatory actives.

    Remember: a good cleansing routine is key for healthy, glowing skin. It’ll only take you an extra few minutes every evening, but your skin will thank you for ditching those cleansing wipes and switching to something gentler.

    Shop now for cleansers

    See our full range of organic cleansers and face washes now. Each is made with gentle ingredients designed to balance, soothe and purify your skin, and we have a 30-day free returns policy so you can buy with confidence.

    If you have any questions, please contact our friendly customer care team on 01403 740350 or email organic@greenpeople.co.uk.

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  • Natural and organic dental care tips

    By Alexandra Posted March 6, 2014
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    How does organic dental care work?

    Our natural toothpastes protect the mouth from bacterial growth naturally,

    Green People’s organic dental care products are made with organic essential oils, vitamin C and Myrrh, known to relieve soreness and swelling, Our natural toothpastes protect the mouth from bacterial growth naturally, without needing to bring in synthetic chemicals which the body does not know how to deal with.

    The fact that the natural ingredients occur in nature also means that these toothpastes do not have the negative impact on the environment which can be the case with their synthetic rivals.

    ArticleBodyLarge6Green People’s natural toothpastes also draw on the properties of pure, organic Aloe Vera, which has a remarkably soothing effect on sensitive gums, helping to reduce swelling and discomfort.  It is also an effective antiseptic and aids in keeping gums clean, especially in areas which are hard to reach with the toothbrush.

    All of our organic toothpastes contain natural Betaine. Clinical trials have shown that this ingredient relieves the symptoms of Dry Mouth Syndrome, a common condition which affect as many as one in four people in the UK.

    At Green People, we are committed to using natural ingredients in our organic dental care range, which includes a range of toothpastes for adults and children.  We believe that the effectiveness of our chosen ingredients, together with their natural action make these natural toothpastes a safe, ethical choice for all the family.

    See our natural and organic toothpastes now.

    Other natural ways to clean your teeth

    The miswak stick:

    For thousands of years, people in some Middle Eastern, Asian and African countries have used the Miswak, a stick from a certain type of tree (Salvadora persica), to clean their teeth and gums effectively.

    Recent research from the King Saud University has shown that this stick contains many natural substances which help to protect the gums from disease, kill micro-organisms in the mouth and increase salivation.

    The Miswak stick demonstrates how natural materials can offer us an excellent alternative to the synthetic chemical ingredients which can be found in many personal care products, from shampoos to sanitisers, and from toners to toothpastes.

    Cranberries

    There is a compound in cranberries that prevents microorganisms from adhering to cells in the urinary tract where they cause urinary tract infections (UTIs). These "anti-adhesion" properties that prevent bacteria from forming in the urinary tract also prevent bacteria from growing in the mouth where they form dental plaque, which is the leading cause of gum disease.

    Sage

    Make a strong tea of sage and add sea salt to make a mouthwash. Pour a cup of boiling water over one tablespoon of sage leaves; cover and steep for 15 minutes; strain; add two teaspoons of sea salt. Use twice daily after brushing your teeth. Refrigerate. Both sage and sea salt have antiseptic properties that reduce inflammation and promote healing. They are also astringent, which helps tighten the gums.

    Ingredients we do not use

    Fluoride

    ArticleBodySmallAt present, 97% of the western European population drinks non-fluoridated water. This includes: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Northern Ireland, Norway, Portugal, Scotland, Sweden, Switzerland, and approximately 90% of both the United Kingdom and Spain. Although some of these countries fluoridate their salt, the majority do not. (The only western European countries that allow salt fluoridation are Austria, France, Germany, Spain, and Switzerland.)

    Interestingly, some of these have recorded even lower dental decay rates since the fluoride was removed from the water system, which has led some people to question the efficacy of fluoride.

    However, it is not just its efficacy in preventing tooth decay which has put fluoride in the spotlight.  If people are exposed to too much, it can lead to permanently brown-stained teeth; a condition known as fluorosis. Children are particularly vulnerable to these marks, which is why it is recommended that they only use a very small amount of toothpaste when brushing their teeth.

    Triclosan

    Triclosan is used in many non-natural toothpastes, though it is not nearly as well known as Fluoride. However, concerns have been raised over the reaction which occurs when it comes into contact with the chlorine which is found in tap water.

    Chloroform and other compounds are produced, which then convert into dioxins when they come into contact with sunlight.  Dioxins are classified as being a threat to public health.

    There are further issue with triclosan in that there is a risk it could lead to increased bacterial resistance to it and other antimicrobial productions, as well as the fact it is ‘bioaccumulative’, which means it does not break down and accumulates up the food chain.

    Sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS)

    Sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS) which is added to many of the toothpastes, soaps and shampoos. Next time you go shopping, have a look and see just how many of the leading brands use it. SLS is used in toothpaste to make it foam when you brush your teeth.

    Unfortunately, it is also a skin irritant. SLS has been shown to cause damage to oral tissues and reaction to SLS may cause gingivitis, receding gums and canker sores, a type of mouth ulcer.

    • SLS can damage the delicate mucosal membranes in the mouth, causing the separation of epithelial layers from the mucosa
    • Burning and severe itching of the oral mucosa following the application of SLS containing toothpaste has been reported
    • The tissue damage caused by SLS increases with increasing concentration of SLS
    • Switching from a toothpaste containing SLS to one without, can lead to a statistically significant decrease in the occurrence of mouth ulcers in those with recurrent aphthous ulcers

    Read more about our SLS-free toothpastes.

    Organic dental care advice

    Have you got a question about organic dental care or looking after your family's dental health? Our customer care team is happy to help. Please call us on 01403 740350 or leave a comment or question below.

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  • Clear your complexion: acne and spots

    By Alexandra Posted March 6, 2014
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    This guide provides information on the causes of acne, spots and blemishes. We look at what blemishes and acne actually are and why many people suffer from them at some point in their lives.

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    We also advice on the wrong ways to treat acne, spots and blemishes which can often cause further irritation to your skin, and look at the most effective ways to take control of acne or spot-prone skin through the use of natural ingredients.

    Want to get straight to the solution?  See our natural skin care for spot-prone skin now.

    What causes spots and blemishes?

    In truth most adults will get blackheads and whiteheads at some point in their lives,

    Almost any change in the texture or colour of your skin can be called a blemish or imperfection, from hereditary birthmarks to tiny blackheads no bigger than a pinprick. While moles and port-wine stains are permanent, more common blemishes, particularly spots and acne, come and go throughout your life.

    Even though it is extremely common there is still stigma attached to acne - particularly in adults since it is often regarded as a condition that exists solely to torment teenagers or a result of an unhealthy lifestyle. In truth most adults will get blackheads and whiteheads at some point in their lives, particularly in the developed world where we are often exposed to pollution, diets with high glycemic loads and chemical skin care products.

    ArticleBodySmallBlemishes, both blackheads and whiteheads are both caused by sebum, a natural oily/waxy substance excreted by your skin’s sebaceous glands, lubricating and waterproofing your skin but also blocking pores and hair follicles. In a blackhead the sebum is exposed to the air, causing it to oxidise and turn black, whereas in whiteheads the pore or follicle is blocked and sebum is trapped beneath the skin’s surface. Though it’s tempting, removing blackheads and whiteheads by ‘popping’ them is likely to cause scarring and discolouration, turning a temporary spot in to a permanent mark on your skin. 

    Spots and blemishes are persistent, but their appearance can be seriously reduced by removing the impurities and excess sebum that causes them to develop. A healthy lifestyle with plenty of fresh air and exercise will help, but your genetics and pollutants in the air around you can’t be avoided, which is why Green People’s range of organic skin care products with their natural ingredients cleanse skin of impurities, unclog pores and balance your skin’s sebum production, significantly reducing the appearance of spots and blemishes.

    Acne facts

    ArticleBodyLarge1) Spots and acne generally affect people in their teens and early 20s but people of any age can develop them. It’s hard to pin down any one reason why someone develops acne or spots but poor eating habits, stress, hormonal changes, genetics, a sluggish liver, poor digestive function, incorrect hygiene and harsh, pore-clogging skin care products can all contribute to creating the right skin environment for the acne bacteria to take hold.

    2) Heavy use of chemical-laden make-up can clog your pores and lead to spots, and make-up brushes and foundation sponges - if not rinsed regularly - are a haven for bacteria!  Try organic mineral make-up instead, and always cleanse thoroughly before bed. Avoid drying alcohol, as your skin will react by producing even more sebum. Stay clear of products containing mineral oil and silicone as these can block pores, prevent the skin from breathing and trap dirt, it is much like wrapping your skin in cling film.

    3) Acne is a skin condition affecting the sebaceous glands and appears where your glands are at their busiest and inflamed or infected. The over-active sebaceous glands produce excessive sebum, which together with dead skin cells, block your hair follicles and pores. As the bacteria feed on the sebum it sets the scene for the development of spots, pimples, white heads, blackheads and acne.

    4) Using acne skin care products rich in natural, organic and balancing actives can help to counter some of these factors and improve the condition of the skin. This is because harsh chemicals can dry out the skin and irritate it, leading to more spots. Natural products, on the other hand, work by giving the skin the tools it needs to get back to balance, become healthier and fight acne bacteria and spots..

    Getting rid of acne and blemishes the wrong way

    Acne can be a source of stress and worry throughout your life, not just during your teens. Though your chance of developing blemishes is partially down to your genes, most people will develop a spot or blemish at some point in their lives so it is important to learn the right way to deal with outbreaks.

    ArticleBodySmallExcessive washing or washing with products that are too harsh for your skin can do more harm than good - your skin is a delicate ecosystem. In very simple terms, P. acnes bacteria feed on sebum, a natural moisturiser excreted by your skin, which under normal circumstances keeps the sebum in check.  Wash away sebum and the ecosystem collapses, leaving you open to infection.  Kill the bacteria with strong antibacterial soaps and washes and sebum will build up, blocking pores and causing - you guessed it - spots.

    Though it is many people’s first reaction when seeing a spot to ‘pop’ it between their fingers, this is never a good idea.  Much like excessive washing, squeezing spots can cause long-term damage to your skin - scarring, discoloration and simple whiteheads turning in to full-on cystic acne. Your body will take care of spots naturally if you leave them be - the white in a whitehead is billions of white blood cells fighting off the underlying infection.

    Harsh chemical treatments for acne as benzoyl peroxide can have side effects and some find it unpleasant to use, irritating sensitive skin and making acne and blemishes worse for some people.

    Natural solutions for staying spot-free

    Cleansing your skin every morning and evening with one of our organic face washes is an easy way to remove all traces of dirt and impurities from your skin without drying or damaging your skin.

    We have created a range of anti-blemish products that contain natural ingredients which have been shown to be effective at fighting acne. Our key acne and blemish fighting natural ingredients include:

    • Bentonite Clay – Draws out impurities
    • Tea Tree extract – Strong antimicrobial properties
    • Green Tea extract – Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties
    • Zinc oxide – Soothes spots and helps reduce redness and irritation
    • Rosehip oil – Excellent tissue regenerating properties, helps prevent blemishes and scarring
    • Pineapple enzymes – Unblocks pores to prevent build-up of dead skin cells

    Even with the best skin care regime in the world, you will still get the occasional spot.  We have a transparent Zap & Clear Serum which will help it on its way, as will our Blemish Banish concealer.

    While you’re waiting for the spot to disappear naturally, keep your skin clean with fresh, cool water. This will cause your skin pores to close, reducing the chance of sebum and bacteria entering.​

    Prebiotics: a natural answer for acne?

    Acne can be a difficult problem to solve, as scientists have yet to understand exactly what causes it. A lot of research has been done into the factors which can affect the development of acne, and these are becoming clearer, but we still do not have an absolute understanding of the exact sequence of events that lead up to an acne breakout.

    What we do know is that the following factors are connected to the development of acne:

    • Excess sebum production
    • Over production of keratin (a tough protein) in follicles
    • Fast growth of a certain bacterium (Propionibacterium acnes)
    • Inflammation
    • Immune responses

    ArticleBodyLargeOne of the factors listed above is a bacterium known to be linked with acne. It is always present when acne lesions occur so the theory is that by dealing with this bacterium, acne can be reduced.

    Prebiotics are probably better known in relation to nutrition than to skin care products but are in fact helpful on the outside as well as in – such as by tackling acne bacteria on the skin.

    Prebiotics are useful because they encourage the growth of probiotics, good bacteria which make the skin less hospitable for the acne bacteria to survive. They excrete natural antibiotics, increase competition for nutrients, lower the pH of the skin and help to prevent the acne bacteria from growing together.

    This effect of promoting the good flora on the skin whilst at the same time inhibiting the undesirables is a combination that suggests acne may be helped naturally. Prebiotics have been described as “a gentle and sustainable alternative to undirected irritable antibacterial ingredients” and it is for this reason that we use them in our natural skin care products.

    Have a question about organic acne skin care?

    If you have any questions about our natural acne skin care products, our customer care team is happy to help. Please call us on 01403 740350 or leave a comment or question below.

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  • Why choose organic skin care for children?

    By Alexandra Posted March 6, 2014
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    This guide offers information on you should consider using natural and organic skin care for your child. We look at our Organic Children's range which is suitable for all children, even those who may be prone to eczema, and which soothes, calms, nurtures and protects your child's delicate and sensitive skin.

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    Gentle, natural children's products

    Organic Children is a collection of gentle products formulated especially for kids, packed with natural ingredients that care for your child's delicate skin and hair through the early years.

    Organic Aloe Vera and natural bubbles from the stem of the Yucca plant soothe the skin, whilst the delicious scents of Lavender, Raspberry and Mandarin create a sensory bathing experience.

    Why choose organic skin care for your child?

    Many children's products contain ingredients such as SLS, parabens, petrochemicals, propylene glycol and synthetic fragrances which can consist of up to 200 chemical components.

     

    Our Organic Children skin care range is different to many of the others on the market today as it is so very gentle on young skin.

    Many of the children's products you will find in supermarkets and in popular high street stores contain ingredients such as SLS, parabens, petrochemicals, propylene glycol and synthetic fragrances which can consist of up to 200 chemical components.

    These, as well as the many other chemicals which are commonly used in skin care products, can cause skin irritation in children with sensitive skin.

    Organic bath and body products for children

    Our Organic Children shampoos, conditioners and shower gels continue to be firm favourites with many little ones. The natural scents of Lavender Burst, Citrus Crush and Berry Smoothie are incorporated into gentle blends that are non-irritating for skin but effective at cleansing and moisturising hair, and the natural foaming agents make for lots of fun bubbles.

    Natural sun lotions to protect from the sun’s rays

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    Children love nothing more than playing outside on a nice day, and what better way to protect them from the sun’s rays than with our Organic Children's sun lotions.

    These are very gentle on your child's skin, helping to avoid reactions such as prickly heat. These sun lotions are also naturally water resistant, allowing your child to splash about on a summer's day whilst remaining protected from the sun.

    Green People’s Aloe Vera Lotion & After Sun moisturises and protects young skin with its soothing blend of Calendula and Aloe Vera. Ideal for everyday use as well as after time in the sun, this organic moisturiser can be used all over your child’s body as it contains mild, natural ingredients and no irritating synthetic chemicals.

    Green-clean toothpaste for children

    Finding a toothpaste that your child likes is a difficulty faced by many parents. However, our customers tell us that their kids love the taste of our natural toothpastes, which come in Mandarin or Spearmint flavours.

    These fluoride-free toothpastes clean delicate teeth and gums gently with their organic and natural ingredients. They also have a protective antioxidant effect on gums and remove plaque from teeth, helping them to stay healthy and fresh.

    Have you got a question about our Organic Children's range?

    We are happy to answer any questions you may have about our organic skin care for children. Please call us on 01403 740350 or leave a comment or question below.

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  • Essential guide to pregnancy skin care

    By Alexandra Posted March 6, 2014
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    This guide provides information and advice on the effects of pregnancy on your body and skin. We look at the best ways to take care of your body whilst pregnant and the ways in which you can take care of your skin to reduce and avoid some of the most common symptoms of pregnancy.

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    Pregnancy

    Research has revealed that even newborns can have dangerous chemicals in their blood.

    More and more research has revealed that even newborns can have dangerous chemicals in their blood.

    Doctors once thought that the placenta would shield a foetus from harmful chemicals and pollutants. However, studies have shown that may not be the case and findings have prompted concerns that babies' developing organs are even more at risk from toxins than adults.

    All Green People products are suitable for use whilst pregnant and do not contain harmful ingredients such as parabens, phthalates, SLS or artificial fragrances.

    Avoiding allergens during pregnancy

    Mothers who avoid potential allergens during pregnancy seem to have a lower incidence of pre-eclampsia, swelling, and yeast infections.

    Pregnant mothers may also wish to stay inside on days when the pollen count is high. Research shows there is a seasonal clustering of higher miscarriages, late-pregnancy bleeding, extreme swelling, and ectopic pregnancies during hay fever season.

    How does pregnancy affect your skin?

    Your body undergoes many changes when you're pregnant, and your skin is no exception. Melasma, acne, varicose veins and stretch marks are the most common skin problems in pregnancy.

    Melasma

    Also called chloasma or the mask of pregnancy. The pigmented patches of Melasma are tan to brown in colour and can appear around the eyes, on the cheeks, chin, forehead, temples, above the lip and other parts of the body.

    There are several possible causes of Melasma, and in pregnancy it is thought that increased levels of the hormones oestrogen and progesterone stimulate excessive production of melanin in response to exposure to sunlight.

    Other factors that may influence Melasma include dietary deficiencies in protein, Vitamin B12 and Iron.  High stress levels may also trigger excess melanin production.

    What you can do to help melasma

    • Your skin is more likely to develop dark pigment when exposed to sunlight. Always wear an ultra broad-spectrum sunscreen (minimum SPF15) which blocks both UVA and UVB rays.  See our natural sun lotions
    • Choose a product like our Age Defy+ 24 Hour Brightening which actively works to reduce skin pigmentation with key natural actives such as White Mulberry and Cucumber Seed
    • It is vital to keep your liver and digestion happy to ensure proper absorption of vitamins and minerals
    • Ensure you are not lacking in protein, Vitamin B12 and iron
    • And remember to de-stress! Get your partner to give you a neck and shoulder massage on a regular basis, relax several times during the day, listen to soothing music and go early to bed

    Varicose veins, spider veins and broken blood vessels

    Varicose veins, spider veins and broken blood vessels are also common during pregnancy, because your blood volume increases when you're pregnant and the baby also puts pressure on your veins. Some will disappear after you give birth, but many can remain.

    What you can do to protect your veins and blood vessels

    • ArticleBodyLarge2In terms of prevention, support hose may help a little
    • Do not allow yourself to become constipated. Ensure that you have 1-2 bowel movements a day
    • Do not sit cross-legged or cross your legs at the knee when seated as this position tends to block the blood flow.  Elevate your legs when you can
    • Raise the foot of your bed 7.5 to 10cm
    • Eat at least 100g of uncooked beetroot a day. Increasing your intake of vitamin-C-rich foods will promote healing and strengthen blood vessels, and raw beetroot/beets, either grated or as a juice, will fortify the liver and aid elimination. It is best to avoid spicy foods
    • Drink 2-3 cups of buckwheat leaf tea a day (good source of Rutin).
    • Sunflower seeds and wheat germ are rich in vitamin E, a deficiency of which is linked with varicosities. A daily vitamin E supplement of up to 600 IU is recommended to help repair broken capillaries. Rutin supplements will build up the walls of the veins, but should not be taken until the fourth month of pregnancy.
    • Gentle exercises – swimming is by far the best and do your pelvic floor exercises three times a day
    • To ease pain and reduce swelling, apply Witch Hazel on a compress to affected areas. Lemon juice or Cider vinegar can be used instead but both may sting a little
    • Applications of grated raw potato are particularly effective for haemorrhoids and vulvae varicosities, and you may also find it helpful to apply ice compresses to the perineum and anus.
    • Taking a cold shower and directing the water up between the legs may help to relieve varicose veins. You can also try a cold bath for 3 minutes before going to bed. Dry yourself vigorously with a warm towel.

    Acupuncture or shiatsu

    Both these therapies may improve blood circulation.

    Aromatherapy

    Can be effective in the treatment of varicose veins, but consultation with an aromatherapist is recommended in pregnancy.

    Varicose veins respond well to the toning and astringent properties of Cypress, Geranium, Lemon, and Lavender oils.

    Have a bathe in warm water mixed with 3 drops of Cypress and 3 drops of Lemon. For a light leg massage mix 25 ml of carrier oil with 4 drops of Geranium and 6 drops of Cedarwood. Never massage directly on the veins, instead, massage the surrounding area and gently stroke the oil over the veins. Stimulate circulation in your legs with gentle massage, using only fingertips, stroke upward, in the direction of the heart.

    Have you got a question about natural skin care for pregnancy?

    Our customer care team is happy to answer your questions. Please call us on 01403 740350 or leave a comment or question below.

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