Friday, April 13, 2018

gardener's hand cream with alkanna extract & urea

gardener's hand cream by Stella Crown
So far I've only given one hand cream recipe for the beekeeper's hands but now I think, it's time to make a formula for the gardener's hands too! A nourishing and protective cream, suitable for the wearied hands of the gardeners and not only, but also chefs, builders and other hand-working jobs. What if the cream is a little bit… pink??😱😜
We pass the pink shape because this colour is due to alkannin, the natural pigment which is found at the alkanet root; recently we made with this the rose lip balm. Alkanet root was used to treat and heal skin problems caused by wounds, burns and infections. It heals eczema, acne and irritated skin. It has antimicrobial, antiviral , anti-aging and anaplastic properties and that is why many pharmaceutical companies use alkannin, the main ingredient responsible for colour, to fight bacteria and fungi.

This time I decided to use an active ingredient that is more used by professionals and is known for its moisturizing properties and its ceramic effect and I refer to urea.

what is urea and its benefits in skin care?

It is an important raw ingredient for the chemical industry. The synthesis of this organic compound by Friedrich Wöhler in 1828 from an inorganic precursor compound has been a milestone in the development of organic chemistry as it has proven that a molecule found in living organisms can be synthesized in the laboratory without biological raw materials.
Urea was first found in the urine in 1727 by the Danish scientist Herman Boerhaave, although the discovery is often attributed to the French chemist Hilaire Rouelle (1773). In 1828, the German Friedrich Wöhler isolated urea from the processing of silver isocyanate with ammonium chloride according to the following reaction: 
AgNCO + NH4Cl (NH2)2CO + AgCl
This was the first time that an organic compound was artificially synthesized from inorganic raw materials without the involvement of living organisms. The results of this experiment have unreliable the theory of “vitalism" according to which the chemical compounds of living organisms are fundamentally different from those of lifeless matter. Because of this discovery, Wöhler is considered to be the father of organic chemistry.
Urea from laboratory synthesis therefore improves the skin's ability to pull and hold water, is used in the treatment of hyperkeratotic or lepidopteran conditions by removing dead skin cells while penetrating very easily into the skin, making it soft and elastic. At the same time it favors the penetration of other active ingredients and is suitable for dry, dehydrated and atopic skins, for the treatment of black spots and skin spots and dyschromia. It heals acne, eczema and psoriasis as well as touch skin with scales.

preparation of herbal oils:
  • Τo make the alkanet infused oil, follow the instructions, here.
  • To make the calendula & comfrey infused oils we pour each herb in 2 sterilised jars. The herbs better be dried and chopped. Fill each jar with vegetable oil of your choice; the ratio is 1:4. Add vitamin E to prevent the oil oxidization. Leave the jars in a bright place or near heat for about 20 days. Drain each herbal oil and keep it in a dark glass bottle.

recipe for ~100 g | 3.5 oz

cosmetic phase a:
10 g | 0.35 oz alkanna infused almond oil
8 g | 0.28 oz calendula infused jojoba oil
6 g | 0.21 oz comfrey infused sunflower oil
6 g | 0.21 oz sal butter
9 g | 0.32 oz emulsifying wax
3 g | 0.11 oz sunflower wax

cosmetic phase b:
34 g | 1.2 oz calendula floral water
8 g | 0.28 oz urea powder
5 g | 0.18 oz aloe vera gel

cosmetic phase c:
5 g | 0.18 oz provitamin B5 (d- panthenol)
2 g | 0.07 oz silk protein
1 g | 0.04 oz vitamin E
1 g | 0.04 oz natural preservative

cosmetic phase d:
12 drops lavender essential oil
10 drops chamomile essential oil
5 drops myrrh essential oil
3 drops ylang ylang essential oil
  • Before you start making the cream, sterilise your tools, containers, work surface and wear your gloves.
  • Follow the cosmetic cream preparation process; available here.
  • Calendula is soothing and gives softness and elasticity to the skin, comfrey is a powerful healing remedy while sal butter gives stability to the cream and penetrates in depth.
  • Sunflower wax is a plant emulsifier that gives the formula hardness and stability, providing moisturizing and softening properties. It belongs to the category of pseudo-waxes and comes from the processing of sunflower oil.
  • Aloe vera gel heals and acts as an antiseptic, by increasing the diffusion of blood to the injured area, provitamin B5 and vitamin E regenerate and reduce water loss, while silk protein maintains softness and elasticity of the skin.
  • The synergistic effect of essential oils disinfects and accelerates the cells regeneration.
Apply every night a little bit of the cream in each hand, making circular massage movements without forgetting the area of ​​the nails. 

Unfortunately, there has not been much scientific research on alkanet root properties so I can give more information, but I know for sure that it is not allowed to be used by pregnant women as well as people with liver problems.

Stella Crown©
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