Category: Top tips

How To Make Your Own Insect Repellant Pure Beeswax Candles

How To Make Insect Repellant Beeswax CandlesImage –

Is the weather warming up where you are yet?

It’s starting to feel like summer here in California, so I thought it was time to share this great tutorial that I discovered for making insect-repellant 100% pure beeswax candles! Link is after my commentary as per usual.

Some of you may already have read’s tips on how to make beeswax “jar candles”. This new tutorial adds an extra twist – the use of citronella, eucalyptus and cedarwood essential oils which act as insect repellants, meaning that your candles are great for use outdoors on those warm summer evenings that will soon be upon us! 🙂

I can’t really think of very much to add to this fantastic tutorial. They’ve covered it all, including a ton of extra images and a list of all the tools and materials you will need.

There are a few important notes regarding candle safety, and these are important – so I might as well go over them again: 1) Use the “double boiler” for melting beeswax (this is more for quality because too high a temp, such as that from using a single pan. will discolor / burn the beeswax. 2) make sure the wick stays in the center of the jar when pouring the candle. A wick too close to the side could heat the glass too much and cause it to crack. 3) Don’t let candles burn all the way to the bottom as this could also crack the glass (another reason not to leave candles unattended!) 4) Don’t leave candles close to curtains or drapes, and don’t leave them underneath a shelf as when the air is still, they can set light to things a surprising distance above the flame. 5) It’s usually a good idea to leave candles on a sturdy, steady earthenware dish, even if they are in a jar, to add another layer of “protection” in case they get knocked over etc.

Here, then, is the link to the full tutorial for insect repellant beeswax candles:

Let us know how you get on – in the comments or on our Facebook page.

Top 20 Weird But Amazing Uses For Lemon Juice

lemon-weird-but-amazingLemon image source – wikipedia – lic. under CC 2.5

So you thought lemons were just for lemonade, lemon cake, grilled trout or honey-lemon-ginger tea? Think again.

When life hands you lemons…….. there is an incredible list of things you can do with them!

(Cue subtle “zen lesson” in having the positive mental attitude and the inside knowledge to make the best of any situation…)

Now I consider myself a true fanatic of the glorious lemon, but many of these weird uses of lemon I had NEVER heard of before. Some of these are strange and unexpected, but you have to admit, they are pure genius. Lemon juice as metal polish, as emergency deodorant (Ok that’s really weird! Who discovered this??) and as fingernail strengthener…. and every point in between, it’s all in there. One thing that I enjoy is that a fair few of the ideas call for the use of the lemon peels – which are typically discarded as being of no value!

Here then, without further ado, is the list of 20 “Weird But Amazing” Uses For Lemon Juice, from our friends over at the stylish and happening Eco Salon:

One last tip – one of the best “not weird” uses of lemon is to add a squeeze (directly from the fruit) to a glass of water before drinking it. It’s thought by many that this “lemon water” is a magnificent “detox drink” and it’s highly regarded as a drink that helps flush and cleanse the system – especially when taken first thing upon waking. I keep a lemon handy for this purpose and won’t be without my lemon water. I think I can actually feel its beneficial effect.

If you’re really into your detox waters, you might also want to check out this post, a more “advanced” detox water with a few ingredients.

Can you think of any more weird but amazing uses of lemon? Let us know in the comments (so long as they aren’t too weird, ok).

Top 10 Uses For Basil Leaf

Top 10 Uses For Basil

I found a great article on the uses of basil from ‘The Wellness Mama’. The link is at the foot of the article, below my commentary.

Basil, also known as sweet basil is a wonderful herb that is adored by many due to its use in Italian and Asian cuisine. It’s a staple in countless savory recipes, adding its uniquely delicious aroma and flavor. Basil is one of the main ingredients in pesto – and is also added fresh to salads and many other dishes.

What is slightly less well known is that basil is also thought to have medicinal qualities – including as antibiotic, blood sugar balancer and stress reducer. Basil is a popular herbal remedy in the Ayurvedic and Siddha traditional medicine systems.

Basil is an easy herb to grow but prefers warm, sunny conditions. It is very sensitive to frost. It might make a good indoor herb for a sunny kitchen windowsill.

A few more bits of basil trivia: Basil is in the mint family of herbs – which may come as a surprise as it doesn’t smell minty! But if you look at the leaves and the way it grows, you can see the similarity. Basil is truly ‘old school’ – it is reported by historians to have been cultivated for over 5,000 years in India and other parts of tropical Asia.

Types Of Basil [1]

• African blue basil (Ocimum basilicum X O. kilimandscharicum)
Anise basil, Licorice basil or Persian basil (O. basilicum ‘Licorice’)
• Camphor basil, African basil (O. kilimandscharicum)
• Cinnamon basil (Ocimum basilicum ‘Cinnamon’)
• Dark opal basil (Ocimum basilicum ‘Dark Opal’)
• Globe basil, dwarf basil, French basil (Ocimum basilicum ‘Minimum’)
• Hoary basil (Ocimum americanum formerly known as O. canum)
Holy Basil (Ocimum tenuiflorum, formerly known as O. sanctum)
• Spice basil (a cultivar of Ocimum americanum, which is sometimes sold as Holy Basil)
• Lemon basil (Ocimum americanum)
• Lettuce leaf basil (Ocimum basilicum ‘Crispum’)
• Purple basil (Ocimum basilicum ‘Purpurescens’)
• Queen of Siam basil (Ocimum basilicum citriodorum)
• Rubin basil (Ocimum basilicum ‘Rubin’)

Click the link below to see 10 of the top uses for the magical basil:

Update: We now also have a “herb info” page on this site all about basil:

What do you think of basil? Let us know in the comments or on our Facebook page.


[1] List of basil cultivars.