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Hail, Calendula Ointment!

Posted Dec 01 2010 12:00am

Oh, how I love Calendula, let me count the ways.

1. I love the way I can use it to feel superior. Let me explain. Two weeks ago I noticed dried blood in the shell of my baby’s ear. After gently cleaning it up with a Q-tip, I could see that it was from a scratch she had probably given herself (I just can’t keep up with the growth of her nails!). I was about to dab a bit of Calendula ointment on there when my husband said, “Are you SURE that is safe for her?” Cue the eyeball roll. He always does this to me – never mind my extensive training in herbalism and aromatherapy, etc. Never mind that I’ve seen it work thousands of times. So I said, “Yes, it’s safe, and more than that, it’s effective. You can look in her ear again in, like, 20 minutes and tell me if you don’t see a miraculous difference.” He said, “Okay, I’m timing you.” Another eyeball roll.

Well, in, like, 20 minutes, he looked in the baby’s ear and said, “Wow! Where’s the little cut she had?” Cue, “I TOLD YOU SO,” and the accompanying feelings of superiority that I mentioned before.

2. I love the way it heals diaper rash! Yes, diaper rash. See, my baby girl does not cry when she poops. So we have no idea if she’s sitting in her poop unless we physically look, and sometimes she’s sitting in there quite a while before we look. Ergo, the diaper rash. Well, no problemo for calendula ointment. I just dab that stuff on her butt and her private parts, and the next time I go to look in her diaper 2 hours later, there’s no more redness/scaliness.

3. I love the way it looks in my bathtub! Calendula is really Calendula officinalis, the pot marigold plant. Calendula marigolds are a gorgeous orange-yellow color, and the dried petals look gorgeous in the bathtub. I like to mix Calendula with dried rose petals (which are red/pink), dried chamomile flowers (which are white/yellow), and dried lavender sprigs (which are purple). It’s a rainbow explosion of color for a spa-at-home treat.

4. I love the way it makes my skin look – I use Calendula flower oil  as a base all the time for the customized blends of facial oils that I used to make for my spa clients … it’s great for skin (highly restorative) and even slightly antiseptic.

5. I love the way it works in tea – yes, drinking tea. We used to make a blend called, “Clari-tea” for better skin (haha, “Clarity,” get it?), with calendula flowers, burdock root, and yellow dock. Steep it in hot water and drink it regularly to maintain clear skin. How come it works? Well, the burdock and yellow dock are alteratives, so they cleanse the blood of yucky stuff like toxins (that make their way to the skin and manifest as pimples). The Calendula is an astringent, so it tightens and tones and firms. It’s great for skin all around!

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