Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Scrub up with an invigorating eucalyptus and poppy seed soap

Its Spring here in Andalucia and the countryside is full of wild flowers and the scents of spring which include the fresh aroma of Eucalyptus. Although this tree is not a native of Europe, having been introduced from Australia mostly at the turn of the last century, it is relatively abundant particularly in certain areas. Its blue-green leaves make a welcome change from the darker hues of the various types of indigenous oak that are so abundant in the Serrania of Ronda. Some varieties have beautiful papery type bark that glisten with either silvery or golden tones that light up the forests especially in the bright Andalusian sunlight. Eucalyptus is a highly controversial tree as it poses a severe fire risk and also sucks water out of the ground therefore lowering the water table- infact they have been used to drain swamp lands in countries like Italy in an attempt to reduce mosquito infestations. The Eucalyptus tree also provides a wonderfully fragrant refreshing essential oil that is distilled from the leaves. Its incredibly useful as an effective decongestant and has antimicrobial properties that makes it a powerful aid in personal hygiene products. It also helps stimulate the immune system so its a great choice for a handmade soap especially an invigorating exfoliating shower bar. So with this in mind I set about making a soap speckled with poppy seeds and genorously scented with eucalyptus and a hint of rosemary oil. Coloured naturally with powdered spirulina its also rich in trace minerals. So if youre feeling a little lack lustre this handmade soap is sure to pick you up and get you ready for the day ahead.

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