Professional Complementary & Beauty Therapy

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Here we like to talk about more than just beauty. We support and promote a healthy lifestyle, so you’ll find notes about nutrition, skin care and all the different elements which, when added together, make for a happy, healthy life.

Aromatherapy Awareness Week 10 – 16 June 2019

Posted by on 5:34 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

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Its Aromatherapy Awareness Week – how fabulous! A whole week dedicated just to wonderful aromatherapy. I love how an aromatherapy massage can make you feel and completely relax or uplift you, depending totally on which oils are used. So what exactly is aromatherapy?

Aromatherapy is one of the most gentle and versatile of the complementary healing arts. It harnesses the natural therapeutic powers of essential oils to relieve a whole host of physical and emotional complaints ranging from stress, anxiety and fatigue through to insomnia, aches and pains (incl pain management) and problem skin conditions.

Essential oils are extracted from aromatic flowers, leaves, bark, roots, fruits and berries. They are complex substances that have many different properties. Like any other medicine, aromatherapy-bottles-close-up-672051essential oils have a powerful effect and can chemically alter the body, albeit in a completely natural way! The oils enter the body via inhalation and by absorption through the pores of the skin. Once inside they enter the bloodstream and travel to different organs and body systems where they begin to trigger healing.

Essential oils are pure, plant substances which have been used for thousands of years so they can be trusted to help with our health problems in a safe and natural way.

fht member

As a qualified aromatherapist (qualified to blend oils) I am on The Federation of Holistic Therapists’ Accredited Register. Being listed on an Accredited Register demonstrates that I am committed to high standards of practice

The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT) is the UK’s leading professional association for complementary, holistic beauty and sports therapists. For more than 50 years, the FHT been instrumental in ensuring high standards in therapy education and practice.

The FHT holds the largest Accredited Register of complementary therapists to have been independently approved by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.

An aromatherapy treatment is extremely relaxing treating both body and mind and is a completely natural therapy.

To celebrate and encourage you to try this amazing holistic treatment I will be offering 15% discounts on the following aromatherapy treatments:-

Aromatherapy Body Massage (pre-blended oils) – now £29.75

Aromatherapy Relaxing Facial (pre-blended oils) – now £25.50

Aromatherapy Body Massage (bespoke blend) – now £34

Aromatherapy Relaxing Facial (bespoke blend) – now £29.75

The pre-blended oils cannot be changed and are already mixed beforehand. The bespoke blend is made specifically for you just prior to your treatment.

This offer is available to bookings made between 10 – 21 June only. Excludes mobile bookings, gift vouchers, subscriptions and cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers.

I look forward to seeing you soon!

Many thanks for reading

Sarah Rigden Signature

The Holistic Health Show

Posted by on 4:37 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

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Every year, Birmingham welcomes thousands of therapy professionals to The Holistic Health Show held at the NEC in May.

This is essential a trade show for therapy professionals who have the opportunity to see the latest seasonal therapy launches, whilst enjoying free educational talks on a variety of subjects.

There is also an ever-popular Chill Out Zone, offering taster treatments to visitors whilst raising money for a therapy based charity (this year it was Healing Hands Network, see link here for more details)

I attended the event with 3 of my colleagues from North Devon Hospice which was lovely as it meant we could all share, learn and experience together.

The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT)FHT-Congress.jpg of whom I am a member, also hold a Training Congress just outside The Holistic Health Show in the NEC

This meant my colleagues and I could sign up to and attend hourly talks on a wide variety of subjects.

All very thought provoking and extremely professional.

I had a fantastic Thai Yoga Massage by the Central School of Massage – see website here.

I also attended a talk by Kathryn Ellis, Advanced Practitioner at the Central School of Massage who also did some brilliant demonstrations.

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It was great to have the time and space to actually think about where I’d come from and now where I would like to take my business. Being with other therapists (3 of whom also have their own business) meant the experience could be shared and chatter flowed very easily (not that it ever doesn’t you understand!).

So, now to update my business plan and marketing plan with a view to my long and short term goals and then to begin to set things in motion!

Many thanks for reading.

Have a very happy June!

Sarah Rigden Signature

FEEL LESS ANXIOUS

Posted by on 2:07 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

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Although it’s ok and totally natural to feel anxious at times, it’s important not to let those feelings get out of control. Over time anxiety can have a serious effect on our health and wellbeing. We’ve all got certain pressures, i.e. work deadlines, financial worries, specific events, as well as the usual daily challenges. Some self-help therapies can help you feel calm and soothe your nerves.

REFLEXOLOGY
The adrenal glands, which are directly affected by stress, are responsible for the “fight-or-flight” response we feel when under pressure. This response is meant to be short lived, but in many cases it is a regular occurrence, leading to overworked adrenal glands.

In reflexology, the adrenal reflex is found just below the ball of each foot and also on the fleshy area below the thumb on the palmar side of the hand. Gently pressing these reflexes for a few minutes can help calm the adrenal glands and reduce tension. The hands can be worked at any time of day and the feet are best worked for about five minutes per foot before bedtime.

AROMATHERAPY
Aromatherapy is the use of plant-derived, aromatic essential oils to promote physical and psychological well-being.

The optimum way for the body to absorb the therapeutic qualities of essential oils is through a combination of inhalation and skin absorption, via a massage blend or bath.

pexels-photo-lavendarLavender is one of the most studied essential oils in terms of its relaxing effects. It has been shown to calm the nervous system, lower blood pressure, heart rate and skin temperature, as well as change brain waves to a more relaxed state.

Neroli, often referred to as the “rescue remedy” of essential oils, is also a valuable oil for helping to ease anxiety and stress, along with bergamot.

MASSAGE THERAPY
A natural facelift massage can release tension through the whole body when just the face is massaged. We tend to hold emotional stress is our faces, particularly in the jaw and temples, so gently massaging these areas using upward and outward circular motions helps to promote relaxation and reduce stress, while increasing muscle tone and revitalising your skin. It is easy to do yourself, using your favourite cream or oil after cleansing. Make it a daily routine to look and feel your best.

For all the above treatments you can find me on The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT) Register here

I’m on both The Complementary Healthcare Therapist Register and the FHT Directory. Follow the link and put in my name – Sarah Butler.

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The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT) is the UK and Ireland’s largest professional association for complementary, holistic beauty and sports therapists. Founded in 1962, the FHT has been promoting the highest standards in education and therapy practice for more than 50 years. Its Complementary Healthcare Register has been accredited by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.

Many thanks for reading

Sarah Rigden Signature

Time for reflection

Posted by on 5:14 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

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Well here we are again with Christmas nearly upon us. I literally do not know where this year has gone. I feel its time for some reflection and to take a look back over the year, whilst also preparing for the year ahead. Here’s a summary of B2B’s 2018.

January
A dear client passed away at the grand age of 91 years. I had been seeing Kit each month for 2 years, but so glad she went without suffering. I will never forget her.

February
With three large pamper parties to organise and deliver, February was quite a busy month. Also attending Wellbeing Day at the Hospice which is always so enjoyable.

March
Heavy snow on the 2nd meant Hartland Spa was closed so no work for me that day! Although lovely to look at, the impact on getting around is never good. So glad it doesn’t last…..

April
Really getting stuck into the 160 case studies I needed to complete for my Aromatherapy and Reflexology courses. aromatherapy-bottles-close-up-672051

May
Taking and passing my practical and written exams (x4) for my courses and so glad to pass all!

June
Writing up 160 case studies (it took me all month!) and finally finishing my courses. Being interviewed by The Guardian and having the article published (on line) on 6th June. You can read it here

July
Pamper party season so travelling out and about in the gorgeous Devon countryside in, what proved to be, the best Summer we’ve had in a long time.

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August
After 2.5 years working at Hartland House Spa it closed its’ doors on 31st August due to retirement and its’ sale. I will always be grateful for the experience and knowledge gained there, as well as forming some lovely friendships.

Joining The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT), the leading professional association for therapists in the UK and Ireland for complementary, beauty and sports industries.

September
My busiest month of the year! Pamper parties, clients (in and out). A goodbye meal with the girls from Hartland Spa in Bude and Wellbeing Day at the Hospice. Also fitted in some back pain training with the FHT.

October
A belated honeymoon / much needed holiday in Kefalonia, Greece for two whole glorious weeks. Read 5 books, walked and swam a bit but not much else. Really felt I needed and thoroughly enjoyed. So good we’ve booked again for next year already!

November
Celebrating my birthday, 1st wedding anniversary and 3 years in business this month (soooo much food!)

A large pamper party at Webbery Barton Barn (visit the website here) at the end of the month was a lovely way to end another busy one.

December

A quieter month, but I don’t mind. It’s nice to have a bit of a rest after a very busy year.

Christmas again – where did the year go!

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Wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas and all good things in 2019.

Best wishes

Sarah Rigden Signature

Give yourself a DIY energy boost

Posted by on 3:27 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

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Are your energy levels dropping fast with the darker and shorter days? Its only natural at this time of year that some of us find our energy levels lower than normal. However, here are some quick self help tips to give yourself an boost to help you to deal with your busy life.

Best Foot Forward

Reflexology works reflex points on the feet that correspond to different areas of the body. Working these points can help to restore balance and improve health. Pedicures-in-the-Winter1 Use the knuckle of your index finger to press and twist into the pituitary reflex point (middle of the big toe) for 15 to 30 seconds. This important gland regulates the functions of most other endocrine glands.

Heads Up

A vigorous scalp massage is a wonderful pick-me-up that can be done at any time to increase circulation to the head and boost energy. Simply rub, tap and massage your scalp and neck, working from the front to the back.

Face Lift

There are lots of energy points that can be accessed on the face. Back to Beauty Treatment Thumbnail - Massage Massaging the “third eye” between the eyebrows and bridge of the nose can release stress, headaches and fatigue.

Use the first two fingers to massage clockwise and anticlockwise for 30 seconds at a time.

Prick up your ears

Massaging your ears can increase energy and create a sense of wakefulness. Rub the edges of your ears between two fingers from top to bottom a few times.

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Under pressure

To promote mental alertness, use the tip of the index finger to apply pressure (for up to a minute) between your upper lip and nose, about a third of the way down from the nose. This is the “GV-26” acupoint, traditionally used in Chinese medicine as a first aid revival point.

Let me know how you get on.

Many thanks for reading.

Sarah Rigden Signature

The Benefits of Basil

Posted by on 4:27 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

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Karen Young from The Federation of Holistic Therapists examines the health benefits of basil:-

Most of us associate basil with a hearty bowl of spaghetti Bolognese, but outside of the kitchen, this humble herb has been used for centuries to treat a range of common ailments.

A native of Asia, basil has a long history of use in Ayurveda, the traditional health system of India, for the treatment of coughs, colds and other respiratory problems. It has also been used as a traditional remedy for digestive complaints such as flatulence, indigestion, nausea and stomach cramps.

In terms of boosting mental health, basil is said to have a positive action on the nervous system, helping to reduce mental fatigue, ease headaches and improve concentration.

In contrast to prescription drugs such as diazepam, a recent study even suggests that basil – including the essential oil – can help to reduce anxiety without any sedative side effects.


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The great thing for me is, now that I am qualified in aromatherapy, my knowledge base has grown so much. Oils I hadn’t heard about or used or blended have surprised and delighted me (and I am sure will continue to do so).

One of these such oils is basil which has been a total surprise. If I get up in the morning and my head needs “clearing” (no I’d not been on the wine!), I’ve slept badly, got a busy day ahead or need to concentrate (excellent when studying) or just want to feel more “awake” I mix:-

Rosemary – for mental fatigue, stress, stimulates circulation (*see Precautions)
Basil – for mental clarity, anxiety, helpful for depression (*see Precautions)
Lemon – to lift the spirits, invigorates and revives

*Precautions

Please note, never use essential oil/s undiluted or consume or ingest internally. It is advisable not to use Rosemary after lunch as it can be too stimulating.

Do NOT use Rosemary or Basil if pregnant or lactating, have high blood pressure or epilepsy. Not suitable for children.

Do NOT use lemon before sunbathing.

Always consult your GP or Health Practitioner if unsure before using any aromatherapy oils.

Julia Lawless says of basil in The Encyclopaedia of Essential Oils:-

“Oil of Basil is an excellent, indeed perhaps the best, aromatic nerve tonic. It clears the head, relieves intellectual fatigue, and gives the mind strength and clarity.”

Basil is an antiseptic and especially good for spots. Something I didn’t realise, as usually its tea tree that would be the usual go to on the occasion that one appears! However, a drop on a cotton bud applied direct to the spot clears it up in no time.

Basil, as many of us know, tastes wonderful in cooking, but Basil oil is also a good source of Vitamin A, magnesium, potassium, iron and calcium.basil-close-color-1087905

Basically, it’s pretty damn good!

Thanks for reading. Until next time.

Sarah Rigden Signature

What is anti-ageing?

Posted by on 4:26 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

Three smiling mature women

So I thought I would write about anti-ageing this month as it’s been on my mind for a while now.

What exactly is “anti-ageing” anyway? What does it mean? Why should we be? How can we be? These are all questions coming into my mind whilst thinking about this subject.

I know there has been a lot of murmurings in the beauty industry about the term anti-ageing. Should the term anti-ageing be banned completely from the beauty and cosmetics industry. Is it dated? Is it offensive? Does it send out the wrong message?

Why should we be anti it? To be honest even if we are, there’s really not much we can do about it is there…. is there?

I’m sure the term anti-ageing mainly came out of a beauty/cosmetic industry marketing ploy to lure the consumer (mainly women) into purchasing their products to make themselves look “younger”.

I’m also pretty sure that whatever you buy, be it lipstick, hair product, face cream etc etc cannot actually turn back the ageing process. picture-of-a-clock But we women sure do fall for it.

Of course, then there are the other things you can do to try to look somewhat younger than you are, i.e, Botox, fillers, facelift etc. The trouble with this stuff (in my humble opinion) is why do people want to look younger than they actually are. Maybe that’s a silly question, and I guess the media etc have a lot to do with it, but I feel we should embrace getting older and all it brings with it.

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Kate Humble is someone I really admire. She spends a lot of time outdoors, has a healthy glow and yes has lines. To be honest, however, it would be a bit weird if she didn’t. You just don’t get to a certain age and have no lines whatsoever. The best thing about Kate is she is always smiling and her eyes sparkle. A mature lady can look amazing whatever her age.

There are many things we can do to keep ourselves in good condition/younger looking and the main one is to keep as healthy as we possibly can. Get outside and exercise, drink plenty of water/herbal teas, eat sensibly, look after yourself physically and emotionally. Do what makes you happy and have fun. Laugh, dance and be yourself.

Of course, we are but mere human beings and, whilst most of us may do all the good stuff most of the time, there will be times we don’t. But I’ve come to the conclusion actually that’s ok. Life is to be enjoyed. There is no good and bad, right and wrong, this way or that.

Just do your best to look after yourself and embrace getting older. Ageing is a privilege, not something to be ashamed of or to hide.

sarah-butler-pictureOh by the way, I’m nearly 51 years old and proud to be so.

Some people don’t get that far, but I’m one of the lucky ones. Happy days!

Until next time……

Sarah Rigden Signature

Actually its August!

Posted by on 9:35 am in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

August seems to be busy month no matter who you are or what you do. Parents have children off school and lots of people take their holiday either flying off abroad, staying closer to home or even staying at home (staycation). It has been, so far, very busy.

So I feel like I’ve had a bit of a transitioning period lately. Completing my courses after 9 months of hard work and exams, and then realising I actually need, and would like to, put my new found skills of Reflexology and Aromatherapy into practice. A little recap of what they actually are:-

Reflexology

Reflexology is a gentle, non-invasive therapy that encourages the body to balance and heal itself. It involves applying finger or thumb pressure to specific points on the hands and feet. These points are called “reflexes” and they reflect, or mirror, the organs and structures of the body as well as a person’s emotional health. In this way, the hands and feet are “mini maps” of the body that can be used to encourage holistic healing. It is extremely relaxing.

Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is the art and science of using oils extracted from aromatic plants to enhance health, beauty and emotional wellbeing. These oils represent the “life force” of the plants – they are essential to the plants’ biological processes, as well as being the substance that gives them their scent. Synthetic oils, even if chemically similar, will lack all the natural elements, and this vital life-force.

Thus only natural essential oils are therapeutically valuable. Essential oils are extracted from flowers, herbs, spices, fruit, bark, roots, seeds and grasses. They are used in massage, baths, compresses, inhalations, vaporisation and perfumes.

The Holsworthy Foot Health Clinic

I have been extremely lucky and recently started working at The Holsworthy Foot Health Clinic each Tuesday. To find out more you can access the website here

The owner, Debra De Ste Croix S.A.C Dip O.A Dip is a fully qualified Foot Health Practitioner. What does one of those do, I hear you cry.

A Foot Health Practitioner (FHP) is qualified to provide routine footcare and maintenance for your feet. They can assess the condition of your feet and treat as appropriate and refer you if necessary.

Initially I thought I would be offering just Reflexology but the owner, Debbie, is very happy for me to offer other treatments also. I’ve been made very welcome by Debbie and her team (Debbie owns the clinic, but there are other therapists also working there on different days). The nice thing for me is that I feel like I’ve joined a little team all encouraging and supporting one another.

To introduce myself to the Clinic, and in the hope of gaining some new reflexology clients (well at least I’m honest!), I am currently offering a 40 minute reflexology session for only £25.

If you are curious about the treatment, suffer with headaches, have trouble sleeping or would just like a bit of relaxation, please either make a booking with me at my own treatment room or, if you live in the area, come and see me at The Holsworthy Foot Health Clinic.

I will be there each Tuesday offering not only reflexology but massages and facials too. It would be lovely to see you.

Enjoy the rest of the Summer.

Many thanks for reading.

Sarah Rigden Signature

Summer’s here!

Posted by on 6:02 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

What a glorious summer we’re having so far ….. and long may it continue. I know it’s really warm, and some of you may be suffering, but having had such a long cold winter we really should make the absolute most of the warmth. It won’t be here forever!

It’s that lovely time of year when people gather together for holidays, birthdays, hen parties, anniversaries or just because they haven’t seen one another for some time. The summer certainly makes us want to do things.

Much time is spent outside, either having a picnic or bar-b-que, sitting in a park or the garden (or by a pool as the ladies who I visited last Friday were lucky enough to be doing!).

I’ve been really fortunate to have visited some fantastic properties and attended really lovely groups of ladies treating themselves to a bit of pampering at their holiday venue (or own home in many cases).

I’ve been to The Old Rectory at Berrynarbor (last week) and I’m heading to East Down tomorrow. Taking in the lovely scenery travelling around North Devon really makes me feel blessed to do the job I do. I get so much reward from leaving people relaxed, soothed, calm, de-stressed and generally feeling pretty good.

Other venues I’ve been lucky enough to attend are a wonderful converted barn at Kilkhampton, a beautiful house at Abbotsham Road locally, various properties in Barnstaple, as well as local folks’ houses in Northam, Bideford and surrounding areas.

Of course, it’s always lovely to go to places like Ocean Kave at Westward Ho! or Hallsannery near Bideford, as you’ve got the space to spread out and they are very glamorous and well presented. However, one of the nicest groups I’ve been to (they are actually all lovely you understand) was at The Ultimate Adventure Centre at Abbotsham, Nr Bideford. It’s very basic living space, but the ladies were having so much fun that wasn’t the emphasis for them. What a great group!

I’ve painted the nails of 6 exceptionally polite 10 year olds at Instow and given 4 young ladies (14 – 16yrs) a luxury facial (and introduction to skincare)

I’ve seen a mixture of age groups having a variety of treatments for hen parties, 25th wedding anniversaries, special birthday parties and “just because I haven’t seen you for a while” groups of friends.

I feel proud, pleased and extremely lucky. My colleague and I often say when we’re attending a group at a pamper party how lovely it would be to have one of our own ….. writing this certainly makes me feel like booking one …. perhaps I just might!!

Enjoy the sunshine!

Many thanks for reading

Sarah Rigden Signature

Your guide to Aromatherapy

Posted by on 2:59 pm in Health & Beauty Blog | 0 comments

Aromatherapy is one of the most gentle and versatile of the complementary healing arts. It harnesses the natural therapeutic powers of essential oils to relieve a whole host of physical and emotional complaints ranging from stress, anxiety and fatigue through to insomnia, aches and pains and problem skin conditions.

Essential oils are extracted from aromatic flowers, leaves, bark, roots, fruits and berries. They are complex substances that have many different properties. Like any other medicine, essential oils have a powerful effect and can chemically alter the body, albeit in a completely natural way! The oils enter the body via inhalation and by absorption through the pores of the skin. Once inside they enter the bloodstream and travel to different organs and body systems where they begin to trigger healing.

Essential oils are pure, plant substances which have been used for thousands of years so they can be trusted to help with our health problems in a safe and natural way. Here are some top tips for treating everyday ailments.

To ease feelings of stress

Try …… A relaxing aromatherapy bath with two drops each of bergamot mint, rose and geranium mixed with 15ml or bath base of a cup of full fat milk.

Why? Bergamot mint is excellent for emotional wellbeing. It eases feelings of anxiety, fear or panic, also helping to lift the emotions. It’s a great choice when you need a calming oil that isn’t sedative.

Rose helps to alleviate anxiety and nervous tension. It is soothing and nurturing, offering mental, emotional and physical support during times of stress.

Geranium has an antidepressant effect and helps to balance and lift moods and emotions.

To stop a headache

Try …. Sniffing basil or peppermint essential oils off a cotton pad or tissue or rubbing a few drops of lavender into the temples.

Why? Basil has been used for treating headaches for hundreds of years. Like rosemary, it can help to clear the head and relieve mental fatigue.

Peppermint and lavender have an analgesic effect and work well together, with the stimulating peppermint helping to counteract the sedative nature of lavender.

To aid a good night’s sleep

Try …. Using chamomile, lavender and cedarwood. Pop a drop of each on a cotton pad and leave it in your pillow case or next to your bed at night time.

Why? Lavender and chamomile soothe stresses and strains, helping you to relax and unwind.

Cedarwood inspires peace and calm and is thought to aid the production of melatonin – a hormone that supports the body’s natural sleep cycle.

Try for yourself

In the bath: mix 4-6 drops of your chosen essential oil with a cup of full fat milk or 15ml of fragrance-free bath base. Add to the bath once the water has run and swirl gently to disperse.

With a massage: mix 4 drops of essential pil per 10ml carrier oil (e.g. grapeseed or sweet almond oil).

In a diffuser: use up to 12 drops of oil in a candle burner or electric diffuser.

With inhalation: add up to 8 drops of oil to a bowl of steaming hot water. Close your eyes and lean over the bowl with a towel over your head. Inhale for 5-10 minutes.

In your skincare: for the body use up to 4 drops of essential oil per 10ml of skincare base (for example your carrier oil, cream or lotion). Reduce to 1 drop of oil per 5ml of base for the face.


Please note this advice is for adults only. Never apply undiluted oils direct to the skin (with the exception of lavender or tea tree oil). Do not take internally. Seek medical advice prior to using aromatherapy if you are pregnant, have a medical condition or are taking any medication. Patch test before use on skin.


Let me know how you get on!

Many thanks for reading

Sarah Rigden Signature