A Team Effort: Botnia’s Twelve Hands Hydrosol

As a team, we look forward to one day all year: it’s like the Superbowl for Botnia! For the last three years, we’ve been so lucky to join Candice from Sonoma County Bee Company in Healdsburg to harvest lavender for our skincare. We know you’ve been anxiously awaiting this special concoction we’ve created for you. 

This year, we decided to mix the lavender from Sophie’s Five Acres with lemon verbena from our micro-farm and yarrow from our farm partners over in Petaluma, CA Open Field Farms! This special blend of botanicals is great for inflammation, suitable for all skin types, and brings you to a place of serenity energetically. This special blend is called Twelve Hands Hydrosol, for many reasons. With open hearts, we’re proud to share that this hydrosol will be helping more than just your skin… 

The name Twelve Hands//

Since the pandemic, this year’s lavender harvest was the first time our entire team has come together as a group IRL! We’re calling our late summer hydrosol “Twelve Hands,” a beautiful ode to the hands of Team Botnia that harvested this year’s lavender. The name also illustrates how proud we are of the roles each and every one of us puts into creating this hydrosol: from harvesting the botanicals and processing them, distilling the hydrosol, pouring it, creating a label, labeling it, shipping it out, and sharing it with the world! 

Why stickers instead of a label?

With each limited edition hydrosol, it’s our chance to think outside of the box when it comes to the design of the label. After Twelve Hands was distilled, Emily, our farm specialist, asked if she could hand draw the label for us! We were blown away by her generous offering and artistic skill, paying homage to the beauty of each plant. The combination of watercolor and pen detail allowed her to truly honor each plant’s unique form and function. See her in action here. If you use our stickers, tag us on your social pages @botniaskincare, we’d love to see how you’re using them!

Ingredients and their benefits//

The lavender from Sophie’s Five Acres is a mix of English and Grosso lavender, which is ideal for every skin type and known for its regenerative properties on damaged or fragile skin. It combats excessively dry environments (great for desert and mountain conditions) and is indispensable for traveling and using on the plane. It’s great for calming sunburns, heat rash, sunstroke, rashes, bug bites, and itching. You can use this hydrosol on your skin before and after shaving to reduce inflammation and prevent ingrown hair. If you do get a little razor rash, it helps to heal irritation as well. It’s also antiseptic and helpful for acne pimples and eczema. In aromatherapy, lavender is known for its relaxing and revitalizing effects. If you’re feeling in a funk or in a cranky mood, use this hydrosol to help calm and cool the mind, body, and spirit.

We added in yarrow from Open Field Farm, a biodynamic farm in Petaluma, CA, for its balancing properties both physically and mentally. It’s a mild antibacterial and antiseptic which helps with acneic skin and dermal infections. It’s especially effective for cleansing wounds and helps to stop bleeding. (If you ever get a cut out in the wild, use macerated (chewed up) yarrow leaves to use as a poultice on top of wounds to stop bleeding.) Historically, yarrow was also used to wash skin to soothe cases of eczema and dermatitis. It’s also great to use as an aftershave. Yarrow provides a mental calm and helps one to find peace. For those who are into spiritual practices or distance work, it’s great for cleansing the aura and workspaces.

Lastly, lemon verbena from Botnia’s micro-farm is the trifecta that busts stress and anxiety. If you have something that ties knots in your stomach, like that interview you’re nervous about, or stage fright, lemon verbena helps to boost self-esteem and confidence. It works on the autonomic nervous system and helps to regulate the adrenal glands with its sedative properties. It has strong anti-inflammatory properties and functions like an expectorant and helps to clear the mucus membranes of the nose and mouth. Because its pH of 5.2 – 5.5 is close to the acid mantle of the skin, it’s a great clarifier for normal and combo skin. Just like the lavender and yarrow, it’s great for an aftershave for all. It’s also highly energetic and much of the plant’s life force remains in the water-soluble components like a hologram, when combined with vibrational healing techniques like reiki or sound healing, the effects can be extraordinary! 

How to incorporate Twelve Hands Hydrosol into your routine//

Because hydrosols are the floral water of a plant, it’s best to use them with our Hydrating Serum for best absorption. After cleansing your skin, experiment using the hydrosol before or after the serum and see what works best for your skin! Apply an oil or moisturizer on top to seal it in. 

You can use this face mist throughout the day as a refresh and help bring your energy back to balance. Great for all skin types, especially sensitive skin and safe to use during pregnancy and breastfeeding. (And even helps to calm a crying baby!) 

One of the main benefits of this hydrosol is its ability to calm and relieve tension and stress. Use it as a room spray, or spray on your bed for a good night’s rest. Use it before entering a stressful situation to ground you or relieve your road rage on a long drive home. Bring it with you when traveling to ease the stress of travel and help fight any inflammation that arises on vacation! 

Use this hydrosol in a compress to help heal achy muscles and strains, relieve a headache, heal wounds and scar tissue, and even relieve menstrual cramps. How to make a compress: You’ll need Twelve Hands Hydrosol, a bowl of water with your desired temperature, a clean, lint-free towel, and a comfortable place to sit with the bowl in front of you.

  1. Add 3 to 5 tablespoons of hydrosol into one liter of water at your desired temperature. Avoid using microwaves to heat anything to do with healing. Always heat or cool water on its own before adding the hydrosol in the mix. 
  2. Then soak a clean, lint-free cloth and apply the compress to the affected area, holding the cloth until it changes temperature – cool towel becomes warm, or hot towel becomes cool. 
  3. Repeat until the water in the bowl changes temperature. 

We hope this soothing tonic brings you back to your inner serenity.

Our commitment to long-term action//

Speaking about politics as a company can be polarizing and even offensive to some. But the importance of speaking out and acting out shadows our doubt about doing it. Because when it comes to health care, there is nothing more important for us as a company. The health of humans and the planet’s health are central to our mission. And if we reach one person with our message, we have made an impact.

We believe that abortion care is health care, and in the wake of the overturning of Roe vs. Wade, we are donating the proceeds of 1 in every 12 hydrosols a total of $1500 to three local birth workers we have identified caring for women receiving abortions. We’re also including 12 bottles of our hydrosol for them to gift to the people they care for. When we thought about how we wanted to take action as a company in a post-Roe world, we’ve chosen to support abortion caregivers and receivers with what we do best, by offering our healing hydrosols to comfort and create direct healing in our community. Help us reach our goal by purchasing one of our Twelve Hands Hydrosols.

How to get abortion care//

Our aim is to raise awareness about post-abortion care and the importance of supporting women’s health. Abortion is a normal and safe practice. You can find detailed information about receiving an abortion here. If you’re someone who might be in need of these services and in a state without support, we’re here to point you in the right direction. You’ll want to look for a practitioner under the name “Full Spectrum Doula” or “Abortion Doula” which are birth workers who offer physical, mental, and emotional support before, during, and after an abortion or miscarriage. They can often offer care right over the phone for emotional support and offer advice for any questions you might have about the process.   

Here are some Bay Area resources to check out if you’re looking for abortion support:
Bay Area Abortion Support
National Network of Abortion Funds

Especially if you are now in a state restricting or limiting healthcare. If you are having a miscarriage or receiving an abortion, there are women to support you. So many doulas, midwives, and birth workers are now offering abortion care, and they can send you lists of what to get, herbs to take to support your body, what to expect during your procedure, and how to heal post-procedure.

Abortion aftercare: practical advice from abortion doulas Maliya and Cera//

We’ve connected to a few local birth workers who offer their advice and perspective on abortion aftercare. Meet Maliya of River Blue Birth in San Francisco/bay area and Cera Merrick who provides care in Oakland, CA.

Maliya: “I think normalizing big feelings (all over the feeling spectrum): Relief and Joy can be just as big a part of the experience as deep grief, shame, and/or sadness. My top three abotion aftercare tips involve herbal tea, a heating pad/rice sock, and a trusted friend/ companion.”

Maliya’s at-home abortion kit:
-Overnight pads
-rice sock/ heat pad
-Journal/ notepad
-Hydration: electrolyte packets/ coconut water
-BOTNIA 12 hands hydrosol, or another form of Aromatherapy (try an oil blend in a spray bottle diluted with water: herbs i suggest are llavender/ peppermint/ myrrh/ frankincense)
-Adult coloring book + colored pencils
-A person you can trust…. A friend OR Doula to check in with as you process and heal.

HERBAL ALLIES – Tea infusion : mix any blend of these herbs: Red Raspberry Leaf, Nettles, Oatstraw, Chamomile, Lemon Balm, Peppermint. Place 2 TBS of herbs into a 16oz jar or mug. Pour boiling water over herbs and COVER. Allow to steep for at least 10 minutes (or longer).

For Sitz bath/ Bath tub soak: Epsom salt, and a strong soaking tea of calendula, lavender, rosemary, or plantain.

Cera: “You are in a post-partum period. Move slowly, lean on your community and loved ones for support. Eat warm nourishing foods. Keep your feet warm. And rest. There are several resources if you’d like to talk to someone or share your story like: Exhale and Shout Your Abortion — Normalizing abortion and elevating safe paths to access, regardless of legality. Expressing your truth can help release anything that may be lingering from your experience.”

Thank you for supporting our efforts and values by ordering our Twelve Hands Hydrosol. We hope that when you use this very special and limited hydrosol, you feel the beauty that nature provides us. Twelve Hands Hydrosol is a tonic that most skin can benefit from, to be used after cleansing or whenever you need a little extra care. 

From our hands to yours,
The twelve hands that make up Botnia

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