Herbs, spices and botanicals used in you natural soap, body and spa products.
You can add herbs, spices, and flower petals to your recipes to give added texture,
, or to enhance a scent. Your botanicals can be used as a decorative topping, finely ground to add some texture, or infused in a tea to create a nice smooth color. As with all natural ingredients, many of your spices colors will fade a little with time, but your creations will prove so popular, they probably won’t last that long. Always try to use organic grown herbs, botanicals and spices, but if you can’t, use ones that are free from pesticides and chemicals. Ones grown in your own garden are best but store bought ones are ok too. You can get herbs and botanicals from legitimate herb suppliers on the internet and from most soap suppliers.
Always use fresh herbs unless dried herbs are specified for herb, flower waters and tinctures. When using dried herbs for your bath body and spa products or your teas, waters ant tinctures choose only those with good aroma and color.
Herbs, spices, and botanicals and their properties
Alkanet (alkanna tinctoria): This Herb will color your bath body and spa products anything from red to pink, and from purple to blue. Actually alkanet is a good ph indicator for you natural soap, bath body and spa recipes. For example the more fatty acids you have in your bath melts or massage melts or citric acid in your bath bombs or fizzies, the redder it will be. Soap are by definition are slightly alkaline so the Alkanet will turn a blue mauve color. This works well as a tea infusion in soaps.
Basil (ocimum Basillicum): is a tender herb, and full of folklore. The dried and crushed leaves can be used in your soaps to create a speckled green brown color.
Bladderwrack (focus vesiculosus): is a salty scented seaweed that makes a wonderful and attractive addition to your soaps, and bath body and spa products. Make sure you crush before use, as it may feel course to the touch, although it does soften quickly upon contact with water.
Calendula petals (calendula officinalis): the old English marigold is a bright sunny orange flower, and was regarded as the emblem of love in the old medieval times. This flower contains many skin healing properties as well as adding a golden orange color to your handmade soap, bath body and spa products and is slow to fade.
Cardamom: is native to Asia. This herb has a fresh warm spicy scent. When added to soaps, the finely ground cardamom improves circulation and is warming, uplifting, and energizing.
Cayenne pepper (capsicum spp.): Adds a delicate salmon color to all your bath body and spa recipes, and it is slow to fade. Just one teaspoon will turn your natural handmade soaps a baby pink color, and adding more will give your products a deeper richer hue.
Chamomile Tea: adds color and a nice fragrance to your handmade soap, and bath and body products.
Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum): This spice will add a gentle warm speckled brown color to your natural soap, bath body and spa products. Powdered cinnamon adds a warm, spicy scent; cinnamon is believed to reduce stress and is used as an astringent and a stimulant in bath products. Use a curled piece of cinnamon bark as a decorative topping.
Citrus Peel (Citrus spp.): Finely grated citrus peels add delicate flecks to all your natural soap, bath body and spa products; it also acts as a mild exfoliant. Ground Citrus peels are a wonderful refreshing, cleansing and aromatic addition to your natural soaps and body products. Citrus slices also make an attractive topping on your handmade soaps. They also make a lovely addition to your bath salts and bath milks while infusing them with a gentle citrus scent. If you are going to add citrus peels to your handmade soaps add them just before you are going to pour them into the moulds as adding to many peels my inhibit tracing. Citrus is also known for its astringent properties.
Clove buds (syzygium aromaticum): strongly scented and has a hot sweet spicy scent that is uplifting and mentally stimulating in small amounts. Cloves are perfect for to use as a topping on you handmade soap. If you used ground cloves it will turn or handmade soap and bath body and spa products a warm brown color. This is a wonderful spice to scent your holiday soaps, although clove can be a skin irritant in sensitive skin.
Frankincense (Boswellia thurifera): Both the tears and the ground powder make an attractive addition to soaps, and you bath body and spa products.
Green tea: Green tea is rich in antioxidants and flavonoids and indoles, these are substances that help boost our immunity and are proven disease fighters.
Indigo (indigofera tinctoria): is a shrubby plant native to India, that has been fermented to produce a strong blue dye. You only need a few grains to color your natural soaps, bath body and spa products, but don’t use for massage melts If your are going to use this, try to aim for a pale, marbled blue rather than a dark blue or you may end up with not only a blue lather but blue hands or body as well.
Juniper berry (Juniperus communis): These dried berries of the juniper tree ass an interesting textural effect to soaps as well as imparting their rich deep color.
Lavender buds (Lavendula Spp.): has been known since Roman times to have natural deodorant properties it also adds a relaxing , healing and aromatic element to your natural soaps, handmade bath body and spa products.. These beautiful azure blue buds make a very attractive topping, on your handmade soap, and are beautiful in bath bombs, milks and salts while infusing there delicate scent.
Loofa (Luffa cylindrical): is a wonderful natural exfoliator when added to your handmade soaps. The loofa makes a wonderful bath sponge as well and is suitable for even sensitive skin. The loofa helps to improve circulation.
Myrrh (commiphora myrrha): Similar to frankincense, but darker in color, myrrh powder adds a warm, pink brown color to your natural soaps, bath body and spa products.
Nettle leaves (urtica dioica): stinging nettles. Traditionally were used as a hair shampoo, as they have a reputation for eliminating dandruff and preventing hair loss. This is great to add to your natural soap shampoo bars. It will also add a pleasant green color when used in your handmade soaps.
Paprika (capsicum annuum): Creates a warm rich red color when added to your natural handmade soaps. Add only a touch to your bath bombs and bath powders as too much will leave a ring around your tub.
Parsley (petroselinum crispum): you can use this herb as a tea or mix in the powdered leaves. It will create a light apple green color when added to handmade soaps. The color created by parsley will unfortunately fade quickly. Store your soaps away from the sunlight to preserve their color.
Poppy seeds (papaver somniferum): Whether you use white or blue poppy seeds, they both will add a nice speckled effect to your handmade soaps while gently cleansing and stimulating the skin. They are also a wonderful, natural, and gentle exfoliator in you handmade soaps.
Rose buds, rose hips, rose petals (Rosa spp.): These make a very pretty topping on your natural soaps, they also look beautiful in your bath salts, milks, and powders, while infusing them with their wonderful smell. Ground up rose hips will add a delicate pinkish color to soaps that fades a little to an equally attractive pinky brown.
Rose geranium (Pelargonium graveolens): Finely chopped and powdered leaves add a delicate green color to your handmade soaps that will fade with time to a yellowy green. Make sure that you use the scented geranium leaves and not the pot geranium.
Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis): The powdered leaves from this herb will add a mossy green color to your handmade soap, bath body and spa products. Rosemary is also an antiseptic and is very effective as a hair tonic; it will add a lustrous shine to dark hair. Use as an infused tea in your handmade shampoo bars, or as a hair rinse. Dried whole rosemary is stimulating, soothing and helps to improve circulation when added to your soaps. The scent is also uplifting.
Safflower (Carthamus tinctorius): this is also known as face saffron, although the plant itself is of no relation. The petals are a deep orange red, and the color holds up well in handmade soap. If you mix with powdered talc preferably some other similar powder, the flowers are used in the preparation of rouge or blush.
Soapwort (Saponaria Officinalis): this has small delicately scented flowers with, oval, deep veined leaves. The leaves, stems, and roots are all high in natural saponin which, when boiled, makes a gentle shampoo with a fine delicate lather. If you don’t have this growing in your garden, both the dried leaves and roots will work equally well.
Spirulina seaweed (Spirulina spp.): has a very distinctive aroma – think of a sandy beach after the tide has gone out. The scent fortunately will fade with time and can be masked with a careful choice of essential or fragrance oils. When added to soaps, it produces a rich green that fades to a warm, earthy green. This is a great addition to bath salts, teas, scrubs, and powders.
Thyme (thymus vulgaris): the tiny green leaves of this herb will add an attractive textural effect to your natural soap, bath body and spa products.
Tumeric (Curcuma longa): this will stain your work surfaces and fingers, so like indigo do not use in massage melts. However, added to handmade soaps it will give you a warm, peachy yellow.
Walnut leaves (Juglans regia): the powdered leaves will create a rich, dark green brown when added to your natural handmade soaps. Use the crushed leaves to give you a speckled effect.
Wheat germ (tricticum vulgare): is a gentle exfoliator that will also soften and sooth sensitive skin. The tiny flakes are very attractive in your natural soap, bath body and spa products.
Witch hazel: the leaves and the extract can be used in soapmaking and all of your bath body and spa products.
I have used other herbs, spices and botanicals in my bath, body, and spa products as well as natural soap. I will add them to this list as well. I just want to make sure that I have all the proper information on them before I list them.
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