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The ultimate body lotion?! May 15, 2012

Posted by ourfriendben in homesteading.
Tags: , , , ,

Silence Dogood here. If you’re like me, with delicate skin that’s constantly drying and cracking in our bitterly cold house during the winter, and taking a lot of abuse outdoors during gardening season, finding a good hand and body lotion is no trivial matter. Paying for one isn’t a trivial matter, either. So you can imagine how intrigued I was when the lead story in an online newsletter I’m e-mailed every week, The Dollar Stretcher (www.thedollarstretcher.com), highlighted what the author called the ultimate (inexpensive) hand and body lotion.

What could it be?! I knew that, from at least the Middle Ages through Victorian times, women of privilege who wished to preserve their supple, lustrous skin bathed in raw milk (which contained the cream and butterfat as well as the milk). But today, that hardly seems cheap or practical. Maybe the author had found an obscure discount brand that delivered the youthanizing oomph of, say, Dr. Nicholas Perricone’s luxury-priced products for pennies on the dollar.

Well, no. What she was recommending was extra-virgin olive oil.

As an enthusiastic cook, I have lots of extra-virgin olive oil on hand (so to speak) at all times. But I tend to think of it in terms of salad dressings, pasta sauces, sautes, and roasted vegetables, not to mention as a dipping sauce for bread and an ingredient in hummus, rather than something to slather on myself. The fruity smell of olive oil is distinctive. The oiliness is distinctive. I’d prefer not to have people mistake me for a giant eggplant rollatini.

The author was decisive about all my concerns, assuring readers of The Dollar Stretcher that “Italian women swear by it” and “It absorbs into the skin and moisturizes better than anything else.” She also pointed out that the skin absorbs what we put on it, so which would we rather use, a petroleum-based moisturizer or olive oil? She notes that you don’t need much oil to do the job, and you can add a few drops of a fragrant essential oil to (not her words) offset the fruity olive smell.

In theory, this sounds good. But I’d really, really like to hear from somebody else who uses it and loves it before I turn myself into the equivalent of a basted eggplant with mushrooms and onions, ready to go on the grill or into the oven. Until then, maybe I’ll try unscented canola oil. Or then again, maybe I won’t…

             ‘Til next time,




1. h.ibrahim - May 16, 2012

It is true—-even the homeopathic cure for psoriasis suggests that you put a few drops of the medication into olive oil and keep slathering it on the affected spots. I have seen it work! And its also a substitute for baby oil (might be the active ingredient in the commercial products). We also massage olive oil in to our scalps and hair occasionally before washing it especially in the winter. Yoghurt in the summer!

Thanks, Huma! I’ll give it a (gulp) try when I run out of hand lotion.

2. Becca - May 16, 2012

I use straight jojoba oil. It is wonderful as a facial moisturizer (and body) and absorbs fairly quickly. I have used olive oil but never thought it absorbed very well.

Thanks, Becca! It was the absorption thing that was worrying me.

3. tangledbranches - May 20, 2012

Evening Primrose Oil is another that’s readily absorbed and leaves a velvety feeling on the skin. It does go rancid rather quickly though, and so must be refrigerated.

I make a very effective hand cream (really more of a creamy balm) using only natural ingredients. My relatives are my only test subjects so far, but they all love it (so they say anyway). I’d be happy to send you some if you’re interested.

How wonderfully kind of you!!! I’ll e-mail you my address.

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