I managed to burn myself a few weeks ago by spilling boiling water over my arm. I was trying to multi-task with two mugs of tea (I should have done the Buddhist thing of focussing mindfully on one task at a time) and as I never want to keep my wounded body part under cold running water for long - because, let's face it - it feels pretty cold and unpleasant, I end up with ugly burn marks. I remember learning in first aid that it's not enough to simply immerse your burnt body part in a bowl of cold water because the burn actually raises the water's temperature. Anyway, I've been left with a rather unsightly arm burn and have been turning to two of my natural friends in my time of need.
I bought 3 Aloe Vera plants for the new pad just for aesthetic purposes. They've turned out to be great pals as I've been tearing off the leaves and applying the goo to my burn and then intermittently slathering on neat lavender essential oil. I'm seeing a real improvement as the scar diminishes. I've also experimented with talking to the Aloe plants lovingly every now and then, but that's another story.
For those not in the know, a brief history lesson on lavender: Rene Maurice Gattefosse was a French chemist and perfumer who burnt his hand badly in his laboratory. Being the first available compound handy, Gattefosse treated his badly burnt hand with pure undiluted lavender oil, which not only immediately eased the pain, but helped heal the hand without any sign of infection or scar. Gattefosse coined the term aromatherapy in 1937. The moral of this little story is that it's well worth ensuring you have lavender oil and Aloe Vera to hand in the kitchen. Could make a big difference to a burn.
Lavender is absolutely lovely and seems to have shaken off its granny image in recent years. Relaxing and gorgeous, it's one of the most popular oils and certainly a favourite of mine. I love a little sprinkle on my pillowcase for relaxation and often use lavender in my own oil blends. Lavender is an emmenagogue which means that it can stimulate menstruation. This is great for anyone who is trying to regulate their periods, but for obvious reasons is best avoided in pregnancy. Those with low blood pressure can feel a little dull and drowsy after using this oil.