Those two words “poison ivy” are almost synonymous with the allergic skin reaction many people get from the oils in the plant, and it’s no wonder.  It’s a terrible condition and, though I personally am not allergic to the oils in the poison ivy plant, I sure pity anyone who is.  The reaction can be really uncomfortable with extreme itching, a red rash and bumps, which often form weeping blisters.

If you suffer from this type of allergy, then you’re undoubtedly familiar with that over-the-counter summer staple called calamine lotion. Every year, gallons of it are smeared over itchy red skin in an attempt to soothe the discomfort.

Until last year, I used to buy commercial calamine lotion from the drug store as a sort of “carrier” for essential oils when I wanted to make a “poison ivy relief” blend.

Then I discovered how to create a homemade version of calamine lotion and love it so much that I’ll never go back the commercial version. Not only is it nourishing for the skin with lots of healing ingredients, but costs very little to make and can be used for any itchy skin condition like poison ivy, bug bites, rashes, etc.

Here’s My Recipe for Homemade Calamine Lotion

1 tablespoon sea salt (to slough dead skin cells and relieve inflammation)
1 tablespoon baking soda (to relief itchiness and irritation)
2 tablespoons of clay (draws out infection. I used French Green clay but Bentonite Clay works well too)
Peppermint hydrosol – add enough to make the blend creamy (soothes the itch)
2 drops Lavender essential Oil (antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, analgesic)
1 drop Peppermint essential oil (soothes the itching)
2 drop German Chamomile or Blue Tansy essential oil (anti-inflammatory, cooling)
1 oz glass jar

Step 1: Combine the dry ingredients in a small bowl


Step 2: Slowly add the hydrosol until a smooth, creamy paste forms.

Step 3: Add essential oils

Directions for Use:
Apply to the itchy skin condition as often as needed. Remember to keep it refrigerated as it will only last about 2 weeks. You can also keep the dry ingredients blended together in a “mother” jar and spoon a little bit into your 1 oz jar and add the hydrosol as you need it.

Outsmarting Poison Ivy 
Here is a terrific article from the US Food and Drug Administration called, Outsmarting Poison Ivy and Other Poisonous Plants

Where to Buy the Ingredients
I’m pretty fussy about where I buy my aromatherapy ingredients, and have many suppliers, but my favorite is  The owner is a graduate of my school and has created an amazing company with scrupulous quality.  Many of her products are USDA organic, and all the essential oils have GC/MS reports right on the website. If you subscribe to my newsletter, you get 15% discount off any order from their online store!

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