In celebration of the amazing botanicals and oils that infuse our blends and fill your bottles, we’re shining the spotlight on one special ingredient every month. Each flower, herb, carrier oil or essential oil has a very specific reason for being in your blossom jar product, and we’d like to share its unique story.
From medicinal properties to the ways they were used throughout history, we hope you’ll come to love and admire our natural ingredients as much as we do! This month: nutritive nettle.
Nettle (Urtica dioica)
Nettle may sting when it is freshly picked, but this herb has been revered and used since the 3rd century B.C. The Greek contemporaries of Hippocrates juiced nettle and relied on it to treat scorpion stings and snakebites. Roman soldiers, when encountering cold and harsh climates, would whip their bodies with nettle branches. The warming and stinging sensation of nettle would alleviate stiff joints and help raise their body temperature. Centuries later, early herbalists throughout Europe used nettle to cure tuberculosis, calm coughs and recommended it as a treatment for asthma. Nettle’s high vitamin C content also made it a popular preventative treatment for scurvy.*
Women’s ailments, however, were the most popular use for nettle. Native American women made tea from nettle to sip during pregnancy, which strengthened the health of the fetus and ensured an easier delivery. In 17th century England, herbalists prescribed nettle to women suffering from PMS symptoms and hormonal issues. Even the famous English herbalist Nicholas Culpeper said: “The decoction of the leaves in wine is singularly good to provoke women’s courses (menstruation).” Sounds like a good course of treatment to us!
Scientifically, nettle is noted for its astringent, styptic (stops bleeding) and nutritive properties. It is extremely nutrient-rich, filled with vitamins and minerals including vitamins A, B2, C, E and K and calcium, iron and magnesium. It is also an alterative, meaning that it helps cleanse the blood and supports organs like your skin in eliminating waste. For any conditions with inflamed skin and hormonal imbalances, nettle is extremely beneficial.
We love this herb so much that we infuse pure nettle into blossom jar’s best-selling Hormonal face oil. This skin type needs cleansing, balancing and soothing properties, and nettle gets the job done.
Here’s to celebrating Mother Nature in each and every bottle of blossom jar!
*Historical information on nettle obtained from “The New Healing Herbs” by Michael Castleman.
Scientific information on nettle obtained from “Herbal Medicine 1B – Materia Medica Learning Guide” by Nature Care.