Every year people ask me what I want for Christmas, and every year I refer them to my amazon wish list, which is full of herbal books and products I have been wanting to try for a while, and a long list of artesian herbal products made with love and care my my friends in the herbal community. These people have a special talent for making beautiful, wonderful, glorious products that make the perfect gifts for herb lovers, from people just beginning to the most experienced herbal practitioners.
P.S. Remember all Natural Herbal Living products, 6 month and 1 year memberships are on sale through January 1st 2016
- Everything in our online shop is 15% off using the coupon code giftgiving
- All Natural Herbal Living Magazine 6 month and 1 year subscriptions for the magazine and the herb box subscriptions are 10% ff using the coupon code GREATGIFT
Here are some of my favorite gift ideas for herbalists:
Bath and Body Products
Every year people spend a good chunk of change to buy bath and body products that are filled with un natural ingredients doused in artificial fragrance, which then lives under the gift receivers sink until they finally just toss it out because they won’t use it anyway. These bath and body products are made with the highest quality ingredients from pure, natural sources, and are scented with the powers of essential oils, if at all.
Have you ever had one of those days where everything seems to be going wrong? Your mood is bad, you are irritable for no good reason, perhaps something bad, even terrible happened that day that really sent you into a tail spin. When I have a bad day, where everything seems to be going wrong and I am constantly on edge I turn to my Sacred Space bath salts, body butter, smudge mist, and more to help me become calm, cool, collected, and most importantly, back in touch with the divine. I call this my “mommy is about to loose her s*it medicine” – and for good reason.
The sacred space products were designed to help balance the masculine and feminine while grounding us, and at the same time helping us to connect with our higher power.
Botanical perfume is made with essential oils and NOT fragrance oils (EVER). It NOT strong like perfume you buy in the store (at least mine is not), it is designed to be subtle and not overpowering, so do not worry if you apply more than you normally would with other perfumes. A little on the back of the knees, wrists and neck so that you smell it is enough. Many of my scents are designed with a purpose in mind: to uplift, relax, ground you, or maybe make you feel a little frisky.
If you have been paying attention to my product reviews, you will know this is my all time favorite herbal skin care kit. This kit has everything you need to get started toward more natural cleansing and care of your skin!
2 oz bottle of “Mug Preference, a facial oil, 2 oz bottle of “Queen of Mug Herbal Toner”, 1 oz pump of “Eye Pop/Skin Revitalizing Lotion”, .8 oz “Skin Restorative Infusion”, an instructional booklet coaching about how to take care of the skin with this method, and a beautiful travel bag to carry them along with. This is a fantastic gift for kids learning about skin care on up to grandmas who need a better skincare routine!
Also, Lori is offering all of our readers 10% off of anything in her Etsy store by using the coupon code SWEETANNIVERSARY10
The Cocoa Mint Bath and Body Gift Set is a fantastic gift for any chocolate lover. It is made with 100% organic, fair train cocoa and all other ingredients are also organic or ethically wild crafted. This is a fantastic gift for anyone. It is invigorating, uplifting, and richly decadent.
This Cocoa Mint Bath and Body Gift Set includes: 32 oz cocoa mint bath salts, 8 oz cocoa mint body butter, 8 oz cocoa coffee mint body polish, 1/4 oz cocoa mint lip gloss.
Lets not forget the men! Cheshire Herbs has some fantastic mens beard items that look fantastic. From the site:
“Beast Man :: masculinity that resonates as an ardent, eloquent, and supremely sexy beast.
Beard care for the man who isn’t shy about preening themselves. Using a beard balm is a necessity in growing and maintaining a healthy and awesomely sexy looking beard. Moisturizing with a light hold.
A beard balm should :: moisturize :: seal :: style.
Virgin Coconut Oil – has a natural exotic fragrance, highly emollient and excellent as a hair conditioner.
Hemp Oil – enhances hair from within and great for all hair types.
Grapeseed – leaves you with stronger, healthier, more attractive hair.
Beeswax – provides shine, hold and seal.
Jojoba – penetrates well leaving no oily residue, an excellent conditioner for hair and skin.
Essential Oils – provides subtle fragrance as well as improve the health of your beard hair.
How to Use:
Dab out a pea size amount or less of balm and rub between your fingers to warm it like butter. Run your fingers through your beard, starting from the neck and working up. Make sure to rub balm into the skin where your beard grows to nourish the hair at the roots. Reverse and run your fingers through your beard in a downward motion from top to bottom, spreading the balm down the hair follicles. Don’t neglect your mustache. You can either follow up with a boar bristle brush to straighten beard or scrunch hair in fists to accentuate your sexy curls.
Works well as a hair pomade. Use in the same manner above running hands through hair. Can be used on wet or dry hair. Has a creamy texture.”
The lavender rose gift set is a favorite of my customers at farmers markets and winter markets alike. Its beautiful warm floral fragrance wraps the user in pure, decadent relaxation. Made with only the finest 100% organic or ethically wild harvested ingredients, this gift set is sure to please.
This Lavender Rose gift set includes:32 oz Lavender Rose Bath Salts, 4 oz Lavender Rose Body Cream, 8 oz Lavender Rose Body Polish, Rose Elixir 15ml
Located in Taos, plant folk makes a wide variety of nature inspired herb-loving goodness. From their website:
“A nourishing and whimsical blend of flowers and herbs, to be brewed as a luster-restorative hair rinse.
There is something magical and ceremonial about pouring an infusion of flowers over your head. The flowers and herbs in this blend are chosen specifically to nourish the hair with minerals and support a healthy scalp.”
This would be a fantastic gift for anyone who loves their hair!
From the website:
“Juniper Winds is a perfect winter body treat to improve circulation, warm the body, move stagnant or heavy energy and love yourself up with skin nourishing oils and plants. Self Massage with warm oils before or after bathing is a time honored traditional way to calm the air element in the body and mind, which can be aggravated or increased in cold, dry, or windy weather. Warming and calming plants have been cold infused lovingly for several weeks to preserve their delicious and delicate volatile oils in organic nourishing oils. Sesame oil is considered the most balancing oil for all consitutions, while almond and olive deeply hydrate and protect the skin from dry weather. Wildcrafted Juniper berries + organic lavender, coriander seed and bay leaf in skin nourishing sesame, olive and almond oils, with essential oils of aligator juniper wood and lavender.
2 oz glass bottle with screw top.”
Sacred Smudge and Smoke
Gina, a new author to our magazine, creates a beautiful smudge blend she would love to share:
Gathered delicately by my hands, each wild plant or tree was given an offering and collected with deep gratitude for offering its gift to us.
You will receive one 1.5 ounce bag (43 grams) containing a few of my greatest plant allies including Western Red Cedar, Juniper, Yarrow and Mugwort. Simply place the blend into any fire-safe vessel and light with a match or a lighter. Unlike smudge sticks, which can burn too fast and too hot, you can really control the amount of smoke that is released with a blend like this.
Do you have someone in your life who loves incense, or enjoys meditation, connected with the divine, and using ceremony, prayer, and meditation to connect with their higher power? Higher Mind Incense is a beautiful company that uses pure ingredients to make these beautiful, sacred, powerful, and fantastic smelling incense blends. I recommend the 6 pack which provides a variety of different incense blends to enjoy.
The blends included here are:
Northwest Incense Cones
Evergreen Incense Cones
Warm Heart Incense Cones
Dreamtime Incense Cones
Grandfather Sun Incense Cones
Grandmother Moon Incense Cones
Mountain rose herbs carries beautiful resins, smudge sticks, and other burnables to incorporate into any smudge ceremony, or to help a person connect to the Divine. Order several different smudge plants and put them in a cute basket and you will have a great gift for the sacred smoke lover in your life.
These beautiful botanical prints on a variety of clothing (some organic and natural fibers even) are a beautiful way to bring your nature connection with you wherever you go. Hand drawn, and made into prints, these are clothes you won’t find anywhere else. I own several pieces and love them all so very much.
Practical Tools Every Herbalist Needs
There are some tools I suggest my apprentices get when we first start, and others I personally can’t live without.
I learned about the hori-hori from 7Song, an herbalist in Ithica New York. Have you ever tried to dig up a deep herbal root with a regular trowel? Have you ever wished you had clippers to gather flowers and thinner branches more efficiently? The hori-hori is the best digging tool I have found to dig up stubborn roots, harvest easy to moderate to harvest flowers and branches, and is very easy to carry on your person. It is a tool I won’t be without!
Protect the skin and keep your herbalist cool with this hat that has 50SPF, protecting the skin from UV rays while keeping cool. This hat is a favorite of mine when I go out wild harvesting, and if you forget a harvesting bag, the head part of the hat can definitely hold a fair amount of wild rose petals… not that I have had to do that or anything…
If you harvest deep roots like those of burdock, yellow dock, dandelions, and certain tree roots, this spade is a fantastic shovel to dig deeply, all around the stubborn roots, and easily get them out of the ground in one piece.
This drawknife is fantastic to have on hand to harvest tree barks like those of pine, cottonwood, slippery elm, and wild cherry. It is very sharp and easy to use, but should be kept out of reach for children.
Does your herbalist love to go out wild harvesting? This mushroom knives is fantastic for being out in the woods, and picking fungi as you go. I have also used it for harvesting woody herbs like yarrow at the base of the plant. This is nice to have on hand any time I am out and about harvesting, and it lives in the glove compartment of my car so I have a small, portable, easy to use harvesting knife on any random wildcrafting adventures that might happen.
Books To Love (in no particular order)
Food as medicine is still the book I turn to time and time again when I am trying to balance a persons diet to help balance their energetics. Todd Caldecott is an Ayurvedic practitioner who incorporates western herbs into the Ayurvedic paradigm and really brings home the Ayurvedic energetics model in a way that western herbalists can understand. This is a book I feel all herbalists should read as it has some helpful insights on stubborn conditions.
This is another one of those herb books that I believe every herbalist should read. It is really very easy for us to slip herbs into the western medical model of this herb for this dis-ease. This brings us back to the basics. The core of herbalism, aside even from individual herbs (which he does have fantastic profiles on in the book), but he breaks down herbalism into four primary categories: bitter, aromatic, and tonic. When you read this book you can feel his passion oozing out of every page. He teaches with this passion as well, you can tell he really cares about this subject. This book is fantastic for budding herbalists and pro’s alike. It is definitely one I think any herb lover should read.
Carol, one of our wonder authors, has written this book for busy people who want to enjoy a healthy winter OR maybe even gallivant through the cold months~ Proclaim this winter THE healthiest yet — starting with 10 TIPS for Prevention. Pamper yourself with soothing baths, healing teas and EASY to make healing remedies from the pantry. Puzzle no more about whether it’s a cold or the flu with a simple symptoms chart to guide you! Promote quick relief for cold + flu symptoms with step-by-step recipes and suggestions.
This is an excellent natural skincare book. If your herb lover loves making and crafting lotions, body butters, bath salts, body scrubs and really likes to get their hands dirty, and oily and smooth and luxurious, this is the book for you. This has very useful guide to different types of skin, and the different herbs, oils, aromatherapy, clays, butters, and other awesome stuff for old and new herbalists alike.
Does your herb lover love cocktails? Learn about the historical context of alcohol, how it came about, what plants are used for each cocktail, and enjoy some fun recipes to boot! From the book description:
“In The Drunken Botanist, Amy Stewart explores the dizzying array of herbs, flowers, trees, fruits, and fungi that humans have, through ingenuity, inspiration, and sheer desperation, contrived to transform into alcohol over the centuries.
Of all the extraordinary and obscure plants that have been fermented and distilled, a few are dangerous, some are downright bizarre, and one is as ancient as dinosaurs–but each represents a unique cultural contribution to our global drinking traditions and our history.
This fascinating concoction of biology, chemistry, history, etymology, and mixology–with more than fifty drink recipes and growing tips for gardeners–will make you the most popular guest at any cocktail party.”
I used this book a lot when I was first learning about essential oils and their uses in homemade skincare. It has good essential oil profiles discussing their uses in homemade skin, bath, and body care. I don’t use it as much as I used to, but its a good place to start for beginners, and I still check it out when I am looking for some essential oil blending inspiration. I do have to say that it doesn’t have as much safety information as I would like, Robert Tisserland’s Book Essential Oil Safety is a good resource for that, although it can be quite dense.
Does your herb lover want to learn more about wild harvesting? Botany in a day is a fantastic way to begin learning about botany, and learning the different identifiers of different families. I find plant ID in the wild to be much easier when you can narrow it down to plant family. This is a great guide for anyone who wants to learn about basic botany. I make it required reading for my new students.
Do you love wild harvesting and eating wild foods but aren’t quite sure how to prepare them? This is a fantastic wildcrafting cook book, full of great information about wild food ID, harvesting, preparation, cooking and eating. This book is a gold mine for those who love eating wild food, or who want more “off the grid” skills.
Henriette Kress has been an incredibly valuable resource in the herbal comment for pretty much the last 30 years. These books, originally written in Finnish, but now in English, are a fantastic glimpse into her 30+ years of herbal experience. The book is written in a witty, easy to understand, and incredibly practical herbal uses. Although I have been practicing for years, I find my self always checking her books for new ideas I haven’t tried yet. She also has a fantastic website that is a great free resource full of fantastic information collected since the 90’s.
I use this book frequently and find my self lost without it. It is fantastic for medical herbalism, coupling the science and constituents of western medicine, with the tradition and energetics of herbalism. It goes through each body system and gives ideas and indications for different herbs and herbal formulations that can be beneficial for different disease types. This is something holistic practitioners of every type should have on hand.
Have you wanted to learn how to make your own herbal medicine but don’t know where to start? James Green’s book The Herbal Medicine Makers Handbook is truly a wonderful resource for working with his top 30+ herbs. He lays out in the book a good profile for each herb of his choice, and throughout the book gives wonderful information on the best ways to use each herb as medicine. He gives us ideas on what alcohol percentages to use with each herb, and what herbs are best extracted in what solutions? Is dandelion best extracted by alcohol, water, oil, glycerine, etc? He lays this out in a lot of detail. It is a great medicine making book, filled with humor and practical information to boot.
Adaptogens are a wonderful class of herbs that help the body moderate stress by affecting the HPA axis. These are herbs that have been traditionally used for thousands of years to increase stamina, mental acuity, physical performance, and so much more. We use adaptogens frequently to help people who are deficient, and need to build themselves back up after a long illness. This class of herbs is gaining popularity, and this is a wonderful, easy to understand, well researched book about adaptogens by David Winston and Steven Maimes.
Courses For Herbal Studies
Natural Herbal Living Magazine is an e-zine dedicated to helping you develop a relationship with one herb a month. In a self-guided herbal education people tend to be disconnected from the individual herbs and how they work independently from others. By just following recipes and not understanding how each works individually, we have a stunted appreciation for the true power of plants.
In each issue we will discuss one herb on a deep and intrinsic level; how it works, the constituents, safety considerations, and how several experienced herbalists use it.
Natural Herbal Living Herb Box is tailored to help subscribers learn about each herb not only on an intellectual level, but on a physical one as well.
- The monthly herb box will include:
- Ingredients to make several recipes shared in Natural Herbal Living Magazine including, but not limited to, the herb of the month, essential oil, flower essence, additional herbs, oils, bees wax, vinegar, honey, and other herbal goodies necessary to make the recipes of the month. This also includes a generous amount of the “herb of the month” to experiment with above and beyond the recipes included in the herb box.
- Each month is completely unique and will bring new herbal experiences to your door.
- The average retail value of the contents of the box will range between $50-60, depending on the month. Each herb box subscription includes a magazine subscription (value $4).
- We are very aware of the environmental and ecological impact of everything we purchase in the herb box. All of our ingredients will be responsibly sourced, and we strive to find organic ingredients whenever possible. If the herbs are not certified organic they will be ethically wildcrafted.
The best part is this can be given as a gift! After you order, just e-mail me with the name, address, and email address of the person you would like to gift this to, and we can make adjustments so they get the gift! If you order before December 15th, the next herb box will ship January 15th, but PDF magazines are available immediately.
The herbarium is a wonderful resource for any level of herbalists, offering a community space to share ideas, ask questions, and compare and contrast experiences with other herbalists in the community. It provides a wonderful resource for anyone who would like to learn more detailed information about herbs, including detailed monographs, articles about specific health conditions and herbal allies to use with them, and exclusive herbal content from some amazing and experienced herbalists. They also offer some great online courses for beginners, intermediate, and advanced students, as well as a business intensive.
Plant Healer Magazine is a fantastic resource for passionate herbalists. The rebels at heart who care more about traditional medicine systems than constituents and physiomedicine. This is an invaluable resource for practitioners and budding herbalists alike. This is a PDF magazine, but twice a year they publish their work in print. I enjoy the print version since each issue is so very long.