“Now when the turn of each young lady came to go in to King Ahasuerus, after the end of her twelve months under the regulations for the women– for the days of their beautification were completed as follows: six months with oil of myrrh and six months with spices and the cosmetics for women.” -Esther 2:12
I started down the path of “anti-aging” about ten years ago in an attempt to extend my modeling career as long as possible. I invested financially in the latest, best (and often very expensive) skin treatments, and I underwent some pretty harsh down-time-required co2 laser treatments. I allowed myself to get stuck with toxins and endure Microderm abrasion procedures. The pricy creams I slathered on my face were laden with chemicals–made from a lab. When something new was available, I bought it and used it.
What I’ve come to realize within the last two years is that the toxins going on and into my skin, though purported as anti-aging, would actually have the reverse affect long-term, causing my skin further harm. Let me explain:
In the US over 10,000 hazardous industrial chemicals are used as cosmetic ingredients, many of which are pesticides, reproductive toxins, skin irritants, endocrine disruptors, degreasers, and are carcinogenic. By putting these directly onto our skin, they are absorbing up to 10x faster than if they are eaten.
Our bodies then have to “filter” the junk and in the process we actually suppress our immune system, and cause further damage to the skin cells–the same ones we are trying to “anti-age.” Here’s where my story changed….
I started doing research on essential oils, herbs and spices used in scripture, especially those for beautification. These would naturally be synthetic free and if they were good for Queen Esther, then they were worth my attention. My studies throughout the Old and New Testaments would confirm other oils used in ancient times, many with the ability to improve skin appearance and even reduce the appearance (and cell-structure) of wrinkles and uneven skin tone and texture.
These were my findings:
Ancient records show that Myrrh was deemed so valuable that it was worth its weight in gold. Myrrh essential oil and resin has been used for centuries for its internal use, but also for external health benefits because it is soothing to the skin—promoting a smooth, youthful-looking complexion.
Balsam Oil is mentioned in the Bible in the accounts about Queen Esther, the queen of Sheba, and King Hezekiah. This is among the “spices” that are referred to in the above passage according to Hebrew text analysis. Balsam is a tree resin from the Middle East, in the same climate and region as Frankincense and myrrh’s origination. These resins all have the ability to produce apoptosis, or cell death in damaged cells. (Wrinkled or damaged skin anyone?)
Spikenard (sometimes referred to as Lavender by the Greeks) was poured on the feet of Jesus by Mary of Bethany, and the Egyptians and Romans used it in cooking, bathing, as a perfume, and in skincare. Today, we use Lavender to reduce the appearance of skin imperfections.
Cypress Oil in scripture was most likely the Mediterranean cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), an evergreen from which we derive the essential oil. Cypress oil contains monoterpenes, making it beneficial for oily skin conditions. It also is great to stimulate blood flow–which would create a youthful glow.
Geranium Oil dates back to ancient Egypt when Egyptians used Geranium oil to beautify and promote the appearance of clear and healthy skin.
Patchouli Oil was employed historically as a perfume, incense, and medicine in ancient times. Among the most prolific traders of patchouli is the Middle East since the founding of the Spice Road. It is often used today to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, blemishes, and minor skin imperfections and to promote a smooth, glowing complexion.
Another really sweet tidbit about Esther–Her name is actually Hadassah, (also called Esther,) and the name means “Myrtle.” Myrtle essential oil is known to contract and tighten the skin, helps to diminish wrinkles and is for overall skin health.
Since I began using some of these oils in my daily skin care regimen, a make-up artist whom I work with a few times a year asked, “What on earth are you using on your skin? You’ve aged backwards!”
Ahhh–take that chemical creams, lasers and syringes…and thank you, Queen Esther.
For more information, one-on-one training: Contact me at rachelleenc(at)yahoo.com
Click HERE to purchase oils or join the Leaves for Medicine team. Upon receipt, we will follow up with you personally to guide you in using your new oils with your family.
© Rachel Lee Carter, ModelingChrist.com