Lost Arts studio

A lot of the fiber arts I enjoy are things like tatting, netmaking, chair caning, and even weaving, where people will come up to me when I demonstrate and solemnly tell me, "That's a lost art."

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Location: SW Outer Nowhere, Michigan, United States

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02 November 2008

Uses for Mint Oil

Boy, I didn't even think about needing to list uses for peppermint oil. I guess that was an advantage of growing up with a mom who made everything from Easter chocolates and sugar eggs to wedding cakes!

So here are some of the easy ones, off the top of my head.

Candy recipes
Mint oil can be used as a flavoring in a lot of candy recipes, everything from saltwater taffy to chocolate to frosting. Essential oil is very strong, so if you are used to glugging in half-teaspoons of mint flavoring (mint oil diluted in alcohol), be sparing! You'll need hardly a drop.

Tea!
One of my favorite teas is Morrocan mint. That's usually green tea with mint leaves, but if you have mint oil available, you can use the tip of a toothpick to dot some either on good green tea leaves or your tea bag.

(Peppermint oil is robust stuff, and would probably stand up to a fairly vigorous black tea, even, but personally I'd draw the line at Lapsang Souchong.)

Soap making
I'm lucky enough to have some friends who make soap. I don't like a lot of fragrances (I usually hold my breath to go down the soap aisle at the store), but I love real mint. If you're a soap maker, real mint oil is primo.

On the skin
Properly diluted - meaning NEVER put straight essential oil on your skin - this is great stuff for soaking hot, tired feet. Put just a drop in a footbath of warm or cool water. Ahhh.

It smells wonderful, and there are all kinds of aromatherapy uses out there. It'll clear your sinuses, is good as a mouthwash, and of course is used as a toothpaste flavoring.

I'm a "show me the research" person, so I love it that there has been research showing that diluted peppermint oil reduced the pain of tension headaches or reduced gastric spasm during endoscopy or that mint oil showed antimicrobial properties.

A lot of the topical pain relievers you find in stores have menthol as the active ingredient, and peppermint oil is just full of menthol. Again, you don't want to put straight mint oil on your skin: it should be diluted in something like sweet almond oil.

Menthol Story
Several years ago, I dried sage I'd grown, and in order to use it, I rubbed it through a wire strainer. Sage is another member of the mint family with lots of menthol in it. They say sage is supposed to sharpen mental focus and make you feel wise. All I can tell you is that after half an hour of rubbing sage leaves, I had inhaled a lot of menthol, and it woke me up so much that I felt sparkly!

4 Comments:

Blogger Knitting Linguist said...

I bet you did! A lot of the Tribes I work with burn sages as a mental clarifier and purifier, and it most definitely does the trick. Thanks for the list of uses :)

10:03 PM  
Blogger Roxie said...

I grew up in central Oregon where a lot of mint is grown and processed. You can smell it for miles when they cut the mint, and you head gets so clear that the thoughts fly right out of it.

9:48 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

Thank you for reminding me of teh Best Wedding Cake Ever! Yum! The other day she sent over a lemon poppyseed cake and everybody loved it but I couldn't get PJ to try it. Finally I talked him into just a taste. His eyes went wide and he started talking en robot voce "Must have more! Don't know why I fought if for so long!" lol My husband's reply? "You have to remember P, if it comes from Mrs. C, your probably going to like it!"

2:04 PM  
Blogger Bells said...

first up I had no idea sage and mint were related. Two of my very favourites.

As someone who can't smell, the menthol does actually have some impact on me - I like to think I can pick it up but I'm not sure. I'm gonna look for mint oil. I think I will like using it.

4:14 AM  

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