"April, April, what are you doing for the holidays?"
Except for petsitting Gerilyn's cat, not a thing.
The lack of halls to deck this season leaves me to my own DIY devices—specifically my oil melting setup and silicone spatulas.
If you're ready to get a lot of compliments on how good you smell and how GREAT your curls look, break out the double boiler and take a look at some of my favorite holiday themed hair recipes.
Castor and Cider Spices
Photo by BDSPN -- Getty Images
This mix is a favorite of mine for winter protection and for the purported hair growth properties of our stand out ingredients: Castor Oil and Cinnamon essential oil.
I like to have a lot of this on hand at once, so break out the double boiler and the following:
Enough beeswax chips to cover the bottom of your container (less than a handful)
- One part Mango Butter
- One part Castor Oil
- Clove Essential Oil
- Cinnamon Essential Oil
- Lemon Essential Oil
Only thing to really note here is that you HAVE to melt your beeswax first: it'll take the longest, and also, adding the butters and oils before it's done liquefying will float any unmelted pieces to the top of your mix, and you'll wind up with unmelted chunks in your final result.
Use equal parts cinnamon and clove oil to 'spice' this mix, but use a light hand with the lemon! We only want about two drops of that in here to brighten up the smell of the spices with a certain je-ne-sais-quoi, not to make it a hipster lemonade. That's on deck for summer DIY though….
Photo by Morgan_Studio -- Getty Images
- Peppermint Essential Oil
- Avocado Oil
- Tea Tree Essential Oil
- Rosemary Essential Oil
You can put away the double boiler on this one—matter of fact, all of these can be mixed up in one partially empty bottle! However, if you have the time, there's nothing like massaging warm (not HOT) oil into your scalp—especially if you've got the winter blues and/or a little holiday tickle in your throat.
If you have dandruff to get rid of, you can go a little harder on the tea tree oil, but all of these astringent types are easy to go overboard on. Assuming you're only using about a cup of carrier oil, you're not going to want to do more than 3 drops of each.
Massage this mix into your scalp, and to any stressed points on your body for a minty and invigorating pick-me-up!
Make sure to stir well so that the essential oils are evenly distributed through the thick carrier oil: if you leave the lighter essentials floating on the top, you might end up with skin irritation, and you'll be pretty un-jolly about it.
Photo by Amy_LV -- Getty Images
Got beard? This will be just the mix to get it conditioned and smelling on theme for the season, with the added bonus of clearing up any hidden psoriasis patches!
- Cedar Essential Oil
- Fir Essential Oil
- Black Pepper Essential Oil
- Jojoba Oil
- Hemp butter
Okay, when I say hemp butter, y'all know I don't mean for you to have a 'loud' holiday season, right? This is a straightlaced, non-"elevating", legal everywhere plant butter that you'll want to melt down in your double boiler before adding the jojoba oil in about a 2:1 ratio. Our goal here is to make a nice soft creamy mixture since our skin and hair tend to need thicker protection in the winter months, so we're trying to just add a little more softness to the hemp butter to keep things spreadable in the cold.
Go easier on the essential oils than you would with a body butter since this is going to go right beneath the nose, and it might be a little strong. I recommend one part pepper to two parts fir to three parts cedar!
Now that you know what I'll be stirring up, do you have any ideas of your own?
Let us know what you like to mix in the comments, and tag us @naturallycurly if you try any of these recipes!