Tamanu Oil – GOLD

tamanu oil

This stuff is gold! I swear, it has done some miracles for me (and literally it is quite expensive) haha! As you know from this post, I am all about natural beauty products and this one fits in just splendidly.

While we were in Bora Bora on our honeymoon, my husband and I got tattoos as a memory of our time together. It was a really neat experience, the tattoo artist came to our bungalow on our last day and we got matching tattoos designed which say, I give all of my love to you in Tahitian. It was a spontaneous decision which we had both thought of at separate times, EVERY ONE in Tahiti has tattoos (the locals) so we wanted to do something which tied in our love for each other and our wonderful time in Bora Bora.

Okay, back to Tamanu oil, long story short, the tattoo artist told us that since it is so humid in Tahiti, not to cover it, let it air dry and use Tamanu oil on it. We actually thought he was talking about coconut oil, but we went to the gift shop at our hotel and asked for Tamanu oil, they handed us this odd green colored oil and we were shocked at the price. I cannot remember exactly how much it was but it was more than $60 for this tiny bottle. Of course, everything in Bora Bora is expensive, but after looking into buying some more, what we paid isn’t outrageous by any means. 30 ml of this stuff sells for around $45, as I said, it is gold!

So, not only did the tattoo artist tell us to use it for our tattoos, he also told us (through broken English and French) that the locals use it for everything. Literally EVERYTHING! He told us to use it for any insect bite and the itching/stinging would stop, use it on sunburns to heal them and in the sun to prevent getting one, women use it on their face to get rid of acne/prevent it (their skin was flawless), parents use it on their children when they have rashes/issues, he named so many ways to use it and told us it was the best thing to come out of Tahiti and I agree with him.

We used it on our tattoos and our tattoos were completely healed after 2 days, I am not joking. I have had 3 other tattoos done in the past and never have I had a tattoo heal that fast! I also used it on a heat rash that I had on my shoulder, again, it cleared up in about a day and instantly brought relief, my husband has used it on a chemical rash he got on his hand and of course, it helped. I am telling you, there is nothing this oil cannot do.

Of course, when I got back home, I did some research and found even more uses and benefits of this wonder oil.

So, it is also beneficial for:

  • scars
  • stretch marks
  • minor cuts and abrasions
  • rashes
  • eczema
  • burns
  • insect bites and stings
  • acne and acne scars
  • psoriasis
  • diabetic sores
  • anal fissures
  • sunburn
  • dry or scaly skin
  • blisters
  • herpes sores
  • reducing foot and body odor

Tamanu oil is a topical healing agent with skin healing, anti-neuralgic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antibiotic, and antioxidant properties. It is best known for skin rejuvenation, it is one of the most effective agents in promoting the formation of new tissue, thereby accelerating wound healing and the growth of healthy skin (HELLO anti-aging oil).

So here’s how it’s made; Calophyllum inophyllum is the name of the tree it grows on. The tamanu branches are covered with shiny, dark green oval leaves, and small white flowers with yellow centers. The fruit of the tree, has a large nut hull inside. Inside the fruit is the blond nut. This is removed and dried on a rack for a month or so, it turns a deep, chocolate brown, and becomes sticky with a rich, oil. The oil is then pressed from the dark kernels. The resulting oil of tamanu is dark green. It takes 100 kilograms of tamanu kernels, the amount that one tree produces annually, to yield just 5 kilograms of oil. Natives believed the tamanu tree was a sacred gift of nature and that gods hid in its branches. It was their answer to skin protection from hot sun, high humidity and ocean wind.

The smell is somewhat strong and very earthy, so if you’re looking for a delightful oil to use everyday, this isn’t it. However, if you can get past the smell, which isn’t so bad (I used it all along my pregnancy, even with EXTREMELY sensitive smell in the first months), you will reap its benefits, which are A LOT!

If you’re interested in trying it, here are a few I would recommend!!



Acupuncture -Part III

If you’ve been following along, part I here and part II here, I had another acupuncture session 24 hours ago.

In short, for those of you who haven’t been following, I’m doing acupuncture to hopefully induce labor as my due date draws closer, reduce labor by 2-3 hours and help with my swelling in my hands.

So, yesterday, we tried a few more needles to see if it would help at all. I had 28 in total, a few more than usual. The general ones in my feet, lower calves and ankles. She also put two in my baby toes, these ones got the baby really moving and pinched quite a bit.

She also put two in the sides of my belly and two in my lower back to induce labor.

And of course, the usual hand points to help with swelling.

Overall, I have to say while I am getting them, I feel that the baby moves more and I get some slight contractions. My hands swell up a lot for about 5 hours afterwards and are very tight and sore. At night there seems to be more pressure in my pelvic region and last night, I woke up every two hours (without fail)!to go to the washroom. My hands are actually feeling quite good! There seems to be a decrease in the swelling, although it may be a combination of the stinging needle tea and acupuncture but I am really happy with the results, they’re still swollen but not nearly as bad as before!

I also had an appointment with my gynecologist last Tuesday and this Tuesday (today). Last Tuesday was my first appointment since the holidays (2 weeks) and he had noticed that the baby had dropped, my mucus plug was almost gone and that labor was slowly starting to happen. I thought this may have been due to the acupuncture. Today, he informed me that I have not dialated nor has he drawn any closer. My mucous plug is gone but nothing has really progressed.

My conclusion so far is that, while I believe acupuncture has helped prepare a few things, it hasn’t influenced labor at all. I think this little boy will come when ever he feels ready, with acupuncture or not.

However, I am still going to do it regularly and see what happens. I am still hopeful that is helps with swelling and shortnens labor.

Another note, there was another mother there who had been having acupuncture since her 15th week, due to back pain and other issues, and she swore that it helped. She was now at 30 weeks and will continue it until the baby is here. So for those of you in a lot of pain, it may help you! For those of you keen to get that baby out, my advice is trust that both your babe and body know what they’re doing!

Thanks for reading along!

Raspberry leaf tea


I’ve recently started drinking raspberry leaf tea and let me tell you, it is delicious!

A woman from my prenatal group told me about it so I got to searching (and asking my doctor about it) and started drinking it almost immediately.

Here’s why a few reasons why (for those of you not pregnant):

  • It helps with fertility, if you’re interested in that kind of stuff.
  • It treats diarrhea, no one has time for that.
  • It regulates irregular menstrual cycle and decreases heavy periods.
  • It relieves sore throats.
  • It can reduce fever.
  • It is packed with iron, calcium, manganese and magnesium, vitamins B1, B3 and E. So, it also contains nearly everything us women need.
  • It can be used as a paste for rashes, sunburns and eczema.

If that wasn’t enough, here are a few more reasons why (for those of you who are pregnant):

  • It promotes breast milk, I’m sure we’re all interested in having a heavy supply.
  • It stops excess bleeding after birth, yes please!
  • It eases the symptoms of morning sickness, wish I would have taken it in the beginning.
  • It soothes and prevents bleeding gums which many pregnant women often experience.
  • Relaxes muscles of the uterus when it is contracting.
  • Assists with the birth of the baby and the placenta.
  • Can calm cramping of the uterus.

While it hasn’t been proven, it is thought that raspberry leaf tea also shortens the duration of labor. It has been assumed that is relaxes the uterus causing contractions during labor to become more coordinated and efficient (yes please!) It has also been assumed that women who drink it (or take it in pill form) have had pregnancies without the help of interventions (c-section, forceps, etc. )

Some doctors advise only taking it after the 32 week of pregnancy (as it may induce labor) while others suggest that you can take it all throughout pregnancy. Please consult your doctor or midwife before taking it.

I have been drinking a cup of it daily for a week now (I regret not getting it sooner) and have noticed my contractions increase (although that may just be the stage of my pregnancy, 38 weeks) and the bleeding of my gums has stopped.

I am looking forward to seeing if it helps with my delivery at all.

Have you ladies tried it? Any experience with it?

Thanks for reading! xo

Acupuncture -Part II

24 hours ago I had my second round of acupuncture to induce labor (you can find my first experience here).

Obviously, my first round didn’t induce me, quite yet, and I will have it done once a week until he comes.

So, for the second round:

I ended up having a horrible headache all day leading up to my appointment, I really dislike taking medication (especially when pregnant, even though some medication is okay) so I figured perhaps some needles could help.

She put a few extra needles into my legs, 9 in each leg in total, as I am nearing my due date, I can have a few extra pressure points to activate labor. Almost immediately after putting them in my ankles and legs I got a contraction, it was quite a strong one at that.

I was still quite swollen in my hands so we tried them in my hands, once again. They weren’t as painful in my hands as they were last time, I figured my body is just getting used to it. My hands didn’t swell up like last time, however, it wasn’t an instant cure either, they remained the same while the needles were in (unfortunately).

I also mentioned my headache and she put 3 in my head which almost instantly helped my headache.

I had a few more contractions sitting while I was there (30 minutes in total) but nothing regular or, at least, what I assume labor contractions feel like. When I got home I did my usual night routine and went to sleep. This time, I really did go to the washroom a MILLION times throughout the night. While my hands don’t look nearly what they did before I got pregnant, I do notice a decrease in the swelling, hopefully it continues to go down after 48 hours. I also had some more consistent contractions throughout the night, again, nothing regular or increasing in strength, but I do think it is doing something. What I do like is I feel that it is preparing my body, while not pushing the baby out. I believe that my body and baby will know when the time is right (and I am all for that) but a little help never hurt a flee!

I had my weekly check up today at the doctor and there is still some time to go he believes.. but that can all change in a matter of minutes, so we will see.

On a side note, there was a woman there who was 37 weeks, had the usual needles inserted (that we all have) and after about 10 minutes, said she was feeling extremely ill, had the needles taken out and laid down on the floor, so if you are curious about acupuncture during labor, please speak with a professional, this is just my experience.

Anyone have any tips/ideas what worked for you to reduce swelling at the end of pregnancy? I am getting desperate!