Updated August 27th, 2021
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With the current spread of the COVID Delta variant I wanted to revisit my post on enhancing your protection against COVID. I was shocked to realize that this was originally posted back in March of 2020. We have been dealing with this pandemic for well over a year now!
I am not going to enter the debate currently raging about wearing masks versus not, or getting the vacine or not, etc. except for the following comment.
I spoke yesterday with a friend in New Zealand where they currently have approx. a total of 100 cases of the COVID Delta virus and they are under a complete lockdown! They can only leave their homes to buy food! I urge you to think a minute about the disparity between how their country is handling the situation versus us!
Moving on. The CDC still says washing your hands with soap is an important step to take in protecting yourself. They even have a list of the most important times to wash your hands as well as instructions on how to do it. (See the link above.) Obviously we are in total agreement with that as we make soap and use soap. Our soap is all-natural. Some people may think that all-natural soap may not be as effective a weapon against disease but in fact, actually, the reverse is true. If you choose soap made with the right essential oils you can be adding an extra layer of protection in your efforts to stay free of the Coronavirus.
They also have mentioned many times that people with lowered immune systems are at higher risk of contracting the disease. We feel strongly that essential oils are beneficial in improving your overall immune system and hence your resistance to disease in general, not just COVID.
Essential oils with antiviral actions will help boost your immune system the most. Three of the best would be Tea Tree, Peppermint and Eucalyptus essential oils. We discuss their benefits more below.
To my knowledge, there are no chemical active ingredients used to create antiviral soaps. The only ones used are essential oils such as tea tree, peppermint, and eucalyptus. Antibacterial soaps typically had active ingredients of triclosan and triclocarban which have been banned in soaps by the FDA. The FDA also found that antibacterial soaps were no better at reducing bacteria than simply washing your hands well with regular soap.
Essential oils may have antiseptic, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal or other beneficial properties that can aid your body in warding off disease. Many have a variety of other actions that can support different systems in the body including respiratory, lymph, nervous, muscles, joints and more. Essential oils typically should not be ingested but can be inhaled or absorbed through the skin.
Tea Tree Essential Oil
(Melaleuca alternifolia) This is arguably the most important essential oil to be used against diseases. Its primary actions include: anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antiviral, bactericidal, fungicidal, immuno-stimulant and parasiticide.
Tea tree is a small tree or shrub with needle-like leaves and is native to Australia. The essential oil is extracted by steam or water and has a fresh, camphoraceous scent. It has beneficial uses for skincare, the respiratory system, and our primary focus right now – the immune system.
The soaps we make using Tea Tree essential oil are Eucalyptus & Tea Tree, Peppermint & Tea Tree and our Rosemary Mint Solid Shampoo & Body Bar.
Eucalyptus Essential Oil
(Eucalyptus globulus var. globulus) Another very important essential oil native to Australia is eucalyptus. Almost everyone is familiar with the scent of eucalyptus and pictures of cute Koala bears eating the leaves.
The primary actions of eucalyptus essential oil include: analgesic (or pain reliever), antirheumatic (anti-inflammatory), antiseptic, antiviral, decongestant, deodorant, parasiticide and vulnerary (healing of wounds).
You may be aware of its benefits to the respiratory system and as indicated by its antiviral actions in particular the immune system.
We only make one bar soap with eucalyptus essential oil and that is our Eucalyptus & Tea Tree Soap as mentioned earlier. It is one of our most popular bars with its fresh, penetrating scent and exfoliating poppy seeds. We do make a Eucalyptus & Tea Shower Body Wash and a sugar scrub in the same essential oil blend as well.
Peppermint Essential Oil
(Mentha piperita) The scent of this essential oil is the best known of these three. Who has not had a peppermint candy or ice cream or perhaps a mint leaf in your iced tea?
All those wonderful scents and flavors aside peppermint is also a hard-working essential oil with a list of beneficial actions. These include: analgesic (pain relief), anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antiviral, astringent, and expectorant.
Peppermint is useful in skincare, circulation and muscles, respiratory system, digestive system (upset stomach), nervous system (headaches) and the immune system.
We use peppermint essential oil in quite a few of our soaps as it is a popular scent. Chocolate Mint, Good Morning Mint, Peppermint and Tea Tree and again our Rosemary Mint Solid Shampoo & Body Bar.
Wrapping It Up
COVID has had an effect on the whole world and not in a good way. It has caused economic hardship, social and political unrest and polarization, not to mention an incredible loss of life.
I am not here to try and change anyone’s hard held beliefs but I do feel that washing your hands and incorporating essential oils more into your skin routines is beneficial; pandemic or no pandemic.
I hope you and yours stay safe and healthy during these unanticipated times!
Notes: Information regarding essential oils is from The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless. None of the information above is intended to be medical advice. For medical advice please consult a physician.