Natural Remedies for Poison Ivy, Oak and Sumac Using Essential Oils

(This is an actual photo of some more poison ivy that needs to get the heck away from my house!)

It’s that time of year again and around here, I think I actually have more poisonous plants than I have of anything else.  (Ok, probably not, but it sure seems that way!)  I had NEVER had a poison ivy breakout before now, so I was quite surprised when I noticed my arm was bright red and twice the size that it normally is.  Then the itch set in…and it itched and itched…  I searched the medicine cabinet for relief, remembering my poor little ornamental rose bush, that 2 days earlier was being strangled to death by that evil little vine known as poison ivy.  I set my roses free and threw out the poisonous leaves, thinking there is no way I would have a reaction to the sap on it’s shiny green surface.  I guess I was arrogant to think that I was above the sting of that innocent looking vine.    I was wrong, dead wrong.

Calemine lotion was definitely NOT an option at this point, as I didn’t want to look like a leper sitting in church. I had to think quick, so I snapped a pic and sent it to everyone I could think of who knew anything about home remedies for this sort of thing.   This is what I was given, short of climbing in a bath of full of my morning oatmeal…

What you will need:
  • 2 Tablespoons Distilled Water
  • 2 Tablespoons Natural Apple Cider Vinegar, with the mother
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 3 drops Lavender or Lavender Population Essential Oil (for itch)
  • 3 drops Tea Tree Essential Oil (antiseptic)
  • 3 drops Peppermint Essential Oil (soothing menthol)
Mix everything together, making sure the salt dissolves.  Dab the mixture onto the affected area as needed.  Keep stored in the refrigerator and stir well before each use.
**The vinegar works best when cold, plus, it felt REALLY good putting a cool, soothing cotton ball over my irritated skin.
**The kosher salt created a “film” over my rash which I believed helped dry up the blisters so quickly.
**You can tell when you need to re-apply because you no longer feel that salty film that is left behind from each application.
Here, you can see the rash on the underside of my forearm, between my elbow and wrist.
I couldn’t believe how swollen my arm got, and the itch, oh the ITCH…
Another thing that helped was actually that oatmeal bath I spoke about earlier.
I used to take those soothing baths often as a child when I would get covered in mosquito bites.
(now THERE’S something I’m allergic to!)
What you will need for the Oatmeal Bath Soak:
Lay out the cheesecloth and pour the measured oats on top.  Add the essential oils to the pile of oats and tie up the cloth.  Run a bath and dissolve the box of baking soda in the water while the tub is filling.  Toss in the oatmeal sack too.  Get in and soak for up to 3 times a day.

*There are TONS of home remedies for poison ivy and this one worked for me. (and relatively fast too) I did not have a severe reaction, like I have seen in some people, like my husband for example.  I have practically rolled around in it my whole life and never got it till now, which is probably why it wasn’t THAT bad.

I was also told to put a paste made out of baking soda and water on it, but being that it was on the underside of my arm, I didn’t know how well that would work.  I would have probably had more on the floor than stuck on me.
Another tip I got was to rub a banana peel over it, I didn’t have any, but supposedly this works pretty well.
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Tea Tree & Peppermint Mouthwash

After successfully making the Homemade Peppermint Toothpaste, I decided to try and make a mouth wash to go along with it.  This recipe is even easier to put together than the toothpaste!  As I was looking for ideas, most were either too complicated, had too many ingredients or contained alcohol. I stumbled across this one, and with a few changes, I was quite satisfied with the results.  It contains Tea Tree and Peppermint Essential Oils which will help freshen your breath.  These are the same ingredients found in my store bought mouthwash, minus the carcinogenic preservatives and lye! (Can you believe they put lye in mouthwash!)
What you will need:


Mix everything together in your container, being sure to shake well before each use.

After brushing, swish 2 teaspoons of the mouthwash for a minute or two and that’s it!

**Since this recipe doesn’t contain the same preservatives as store bought mouthwashes, it is recommended that you make it in small batches using ONLY distilled water.  Store in a dark container or in the cabinet**


DIY Essential Lip Balm

I have a friend that raises bees way down in the back country of South Carolina, USA.
She makes all sorts of goodies that she sells at local specialty shops.
(with the help of her bees, of course!)
One thing that I love is her beeswax lip balm. I was able to get the recipe from her so I could try my hand at one of
her wonderful creations. I could not believe how incredibly EASY and FAST it was to make! She only makes them in peppermint but the aroma combinations are endless.
My favorite was Cappuccino, a mixture of Vanilla and Coffee essential oil. YUMMY!!
My husband enjoyed the tingling sensation he got from the Peppermint.
Some great ideas would be Lemon, Key Lime, Mandarin, Spearmint, Wintergreen, and Tingly Mint
You could even try mixing Vanilla and Orange to create a Creamsicle Lip Balm!
The sky is the limit!
What you will need:

Each tube holds 1 teaspoon of balm.

Heat 1″ of water in a small saucepan over med -low heat.
In a small jar, mix the coconut oil with the beeswax.  Pop open the vitamin E capsule and add the liquid to the mixture.
Stir until everything is completely melted.
Right before you remove the mixture from the heat, add your favorite essential oils.
Depending on which essential oil you choose, the amount you will need will vary.
For example, Peppermint and Cinnamon, have a much stronger aroma than Vanilla and Coffee, so you would use less Peppermint and more Vanilla.
Start with 10 drops and go from there.
Dab a small amount of the mixture with your finger, and apply to your lips to test the strength of the oil.
If the mixture starts to harden before you can pour it into all of your containers, simply put the glass jar with the liquid back into the hot water to re-melt.  As you can see above, it started to cool before I could even snap a photo! Once the mixture is in all of the containers, let it sit on the counter until firm, about 20 minutes.  Store in a cool, dry place.

This ratio can vary if you find it to be too hard or too soft. It is definitely not an exact science, it is what you prefer.

Personally, I like this consistency.  It leaves a perfect “coating” of balm on my lips with out it feeling like it is caked on.
As I was trying out the recipe, I made one batch with a little bit of honey.  I had a hard time getting it to mix with the oils.  I would still recommend it, but with caution.
You can also add a small amount of Shea or Cocoa butter, if you are not allergic to them.
This would be a great gift for anyone! Make a large batch and print of cute labels for Mother’s Day, Birthdays, Father’s Day, Christmas and so many more!
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Crystal Essential Oil Air Freshener

These room scents are a breeze to make and can be refreshed time and time again.  Use your favorite Plant Therapy Essential Oil to add a delightful fragrance to any room.  I put this jar in my bathroom and I actually enjoy going in there just to smell the air! I especially think The Fruits 6 Piece Essential Oil Set would be the perfect combination for spring.  A neat idea would be to make several different scented jars, placing one in each room of the house.
Imagine walking into your kitchen with a burst of Sweet Mandarin or the fresh smell of Lemon in your bath!

The materials you will need are:

 Mix together about 1 teaspoon of alcohol and a little bit of food coloring.
I chose pink, but at this concentration it looks orange!
 Add 75-100 drops of your favorite essential oil.
Let this sit overnight to allow the scent of the oil to incorporate into the alcohol.
The next day, Pour the alcohol mixture over the rock salt in the mason jar.
You can also use a small bowl and a spoon.
The amount of rock salt you will need will vary, depending on the size of your decorative jar.
A good rule of thumb is 1 teaspoon of alcohol and 75-100 drops of oil to every 1 cup of salt.
Add the lid and shake to incorporate the ingredients.
(or stir them together in a glass bowl)
If you want to layer the colors, only add coloring to half of the rocks before pouring into a decorative jar.
Place jars around the house (away from children and pets) and enjoy! Stir the rocks every couple of days. The smell should last for at least two weeks. When the smell starts to fade simply make a refresher spritz by making a larger batch of the alcohol/oil mixture and store in a small pump bottle! Refresh the rocks as needed.
Wouldn’t this be a great Mother’s Day present? Love the idea! Find a cute jar with a lid and wallah, perfect Mother’s Day gift! What scent or scents would you want to try?
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Homemade Peppermint Toothpaste

One morning as I was brushing my teeth, I picked up my “all-natural-fluoride-free” tube of toothpaste to read the ingredients.  I thought there would only be one or two things listed, and that I would be able to identify what it is exactly that I’m putting into my mouth every day. As I read through the ingredients, I was shocked at what I found.  Sure, it had some of the ingredients listed in this homemade recipe, but it also contained things that I do not want to expose my family to.
Some of the ingredients that were listed are:
Calcium Carbinate, which has been known to cause osteoporosis
Hydrated Silica, a whitener that damages tooth enamel
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, which causes cancer, liver and kidney damage.
Fluoride: I will never use ANYTHING with fluoride.
It is a poison that poses too many health risks to list here.
A simple internet search on “Fluoride Dangers” will show exactly what it is and the dangers that it carries.
Why manufactures add these extra poisons is beyond me.
 The Ingredients that you will need are:
  • 3 Tablespoons Baking Soda
  • 3 Tablespoons Organic Coconut Oil
  • 25 Drops Plant Therapy Peppermint Essential Oil
  • 2 Teaspoons Vegetable Glycerine (optional)
  • 1 Packet Stevia (optional)
  • A small container to store it in
Mix the baking soda and coconut oil in a small bowl.
Add the optional glycerine and Stevia.
The glycerine will give it a texture more similar to store bought paste.
Stevia is a natural sweetener that is derived from a South American herb.
I used it to offset the saltiness of the baking soda.
Again, these last two are optional, and it will work just fine with out them.
I actually prefer it with out the glycerine and Stevia.
Add 25 drops of the Plant Therapy Peppermint Essential Oil and stir.
Store in a small container.
Dip your toothbrush into the toothpaste and brush as usual.
You will find that this gives a fresh, clean feeling that far surpasses anything you could buy in the store.
 I was amazed at the “just left the dentist” feeling that it left on my teeth and the peppermint oil worked wonders in freshening my breath!
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Essential Oil Body Dusting Powder

This is truly an EASY to make body dusting powder, minus the talc and other harsh chemicals. Talc is known to cause health problems including cancer.  Recently, I was reading the ingredients list for a name brand body powder and I couldn’t even pronounce 75% of the ingredients! The other 25% I would not want any where near my body! This powder could also be used for smelly shoes and to freshen sheets! Add your favorite Plant Therapy essential oils such as chamomile, vanilla,  sandalwood or lavender.
 You will need:
  • 1 cup Cornstarch or Arrowroot
  • 25 drops of your favorite Plant Therapy Essential Oil
  • Optional: 1/4 cup baking soda (for absorbing excess moisture in the summertime)
You will also need a container to hold the powder.
I used an old body powder container from when I was younger but there are many options to consider.
Here are some ideas for repurposing old containers that I found in my kitchen.  I think the sea salt shakers might be a good idea since they can be closed and shaken up if necessary.
How to make the powder:
In a mixing bowl, add the base powders, and whisk to combine.
Continue to whisk and slowly add the essential oil of your choice.
  You made need to use your hands to break up any small clumps that may have formed from the moisture of the oil.
Put the powder into a mason jar and let sit for a few days to allow the scent to distribute through the powder.
Shake the jar well once a day.
Once the powder has been infused with the aroma of the oils, sift it over a bowl using a fine mesh sieve.  This will get out any remaining clumps that may have formed.
Store in your container of choice.
If you live in a high humid area, and the powder begins to clump, simply re-sift and put it back in its container.

Essential Coconut Sugar Scrub


Body scrubs can cost upwards of $35, but this DIY recipe makes it for under $2! Body scrubs make great gifts not only for your friends and family, but to yourself, after a hard day at work.  Simply draw your hot bath, get in and soak!  Use this scrub over your whole body focusing on dry spots such as your feet and elbows.  This also double as a shave cream for women!  Your legs will feel silky smooth for days after using this scrub.  Add your own Essential Oils, such as Lavender, Vanilla, citrus, or any of the synergies available from  The possibilities are endless, so be creative!


Use a 1:2 ratio of Coconut Oil to Sugar.

For example: If I want to make enough scrub to fill a pint jar, I use 2 cups Sugar to 1 cup Coconut Oil. This recipe easily doubles, triples etc…

Use 1-2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice per cup of Sugar.

TIP: Unrefined coconut oil has the smell of coconuts
on a tropical beach, where as regular organic coconut oil, has no smell

Step 1: In a medium bowl, add the coconut oil and stir to soften it.  It
is solid right out of the jar so give it a stir to whip it up a bit.
Step 2: Add the sugar and stir until thoroughly combined.
Step 3: Squeeze your lemons and stir the juice in.  Watch out for those pesky seeds!!
Step 4: Add a few drops of your favorite essential oil.
 Mix and match for your own customized scrub.
Lavender: Soothing and Relaxing
Oil of Oregano: Athletes foot and other Fungus
Lemon: Cleansing and Purifying
 Peppermint: Energizing and Invigorating
Any of the Plant Therapy Synergies would work VERY well for this!
Anti-Anxiety Synergy Oil after a stressful day would be AMAZING!!
Step 5: Store in a pretty glass jar.

 At Bath Time:– Draw a warm/hot bath.- Soak and relax for about five minutes.- Take a palm full of your homemade sugar scrub and scrub that leg and then rinse off.

– Shave one leg
 – Take a palm full of sugar scrub and scrub your leg again.
– Shave your leg again. Yes, again!-Repeat on your other leg.- After your bath, dry off and then lotion your legs.
The first shave removes the hair.  When you scrub the second time, it removes any dead skin.  You will need to rinse your razor quite often, and you will see why!!
This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Plant Therapy and it’s representatives are not intending to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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