We have always been great advocates for bringing the outdoors in with our design schemes. In recent times we have taken this principle one step further and looked for ways to use natural elements within our homes to improve our health and wellbeing.

There are so many wellness experts advocating for the use of essential oils, salt lamps, and natural cleaning solutions at the moment. We thought we would put it to the test, do some thorough research, and cut through the ’noise’. Here’s how and why to use each:

‘How’ and ‘why’ would you use a salt lamp you ask? There are apparently many reasons, some of which have us wanting to purchase in bulk. As the salt warms inside your lamp, moisture in the air will be drawn to the salt (and the pollution in the air with it). Neat huh? In addition to cleansing the air, if left on (and not simply used intermittently as a reading or night light) negative ions can build up in the room. The word negative doesn’t normally have connotations with good health but in this case, negative ions are the exception. Positive ions are produced by technology and need to be balanced out by naturally produced negative ions to create a healthy environment for the human body. Negative ions are abundant in places of nature, whilst positive ions will be found in abundance in crowded office spaces. (unfortunately laptops and waterfalls aren’t compatible). Things to remember: A large space needs more than one lamp in it to work effectively. The lamp needs to be left on long enough to produce heat and warm the salt. There are many imitations on the market, so ensure you are buying a salt lamp from a reputable retailer (otherwise you will end up with an expensive pink night light). We love this 7kg Himalayan salt lamp for its natural look and ability to cleanse a medium sized room in your home area once heated.

Whether you like to use essential oils for relaxation, health, de-odourising or disinfecting, once you have introduced the heavenly scent of essential oils in your home, there’s no going back. We are strong advocates of eucalyptus oil as part of our cleaning regime, and love to burn both lavender and lemon oils in an oil burner for their mood boosting properties. Eucalyptus oil – we add drops to our laundry and use it diluted in a spray for effective cleaning and disinfecting (in both the kitchen and bathroom). Lavender oil – this is a great oil to add to a humidifier when winding down for the evening, for its relaxation and sleep inducing properties. (We recommend using a humidifier for the bedroom, as falling asleep with a live flame is definitely not recommended.) Lemon oil – we use as an energising mood booster in an oil burner, usually in the kitchen. Different fragrances have different purposes and certain scents will appeal to some and not others. Whilst boasting numerous benefits, essential oils should never be applied directly to the skin. They need to be mixed with a carrier oil for dilution and absorption, or they can cause serious burns. Suggested carrier oils include argan or sweet almond oil.

The removal of toxins from our life is a movement that is really picking up steam. It’s a movement premised by eliminating products that contain harmful chemicals from your home, and replacing them with natural ones. Simple right? Not so. If you really knew how many chemicals you are breathing in (and that your skin is absorbing everyday) due to cleaning products, you would throw open the cupboard doors at home and probably bin everything other than the vinegar and bi-carb soda. It is very difficult to find products at the super market that don’t contain some seriously harmful chemicals. If you feel the need for serious ventilation of a room after use, or get a headache after spraying it in your shower - it’s probably not very good for you. Online retailers such as Biome and Enjo have done the hard yards and offer products that help you clean your home with no nasties. Homemade solutions that involve natural ingredients like lemon juice, eucalyptus, or tea tree oil are the safest options for a toxin free clean.

Our Advice….. With any significant changes to lifestyle or a large purchase, we strongly advocate doing your research and getting products that are both safe and of high quality. Misused or poor quality essential oils, cheap lamps, or the mixing of natural chemicals (hello bicarb and vinegar volcanos in science class) can all be very dangerous. We continue to educate ourselves every day as part of our journey towards a more natural and sustainable lifestyle.