Friday, May 2, 2014

Vinegar Friday -- Rashes and onions and ticks, oh my!


It's Vinegar Friday once again (where did the last month go?). I'm excited to share three new tips with you today. My friend, Maureen, emailed this first one to me a few days ago:

Skin treatment

Itchy skin? Minor skin irritation? Grab the ACV (apple cider vinegar) and an eggshell. Actually, you'll want to do this ahead of time so you have it on hand when it's needed. Simply drop the eggshell in a small jar of ACV and wait for it to dissolve. It will take about 48 hours, so I recommend going about your business until it's ready. The calcium mixed with the vinegar is an excellent non-toxic treatment for minor skin irritations and itches. 

Image by Lynn Greyling

  No more tears

You know that dreadful feeling of tears running down your cheeks as you slice onions. Well, put away the hanky (I assume you are using reusable, cloth hankies, right?). All you need to do to avoid the watery eye problem is spray some distilled white vinegar (DWV) on your cutting board before you slice. If you're concerned about your onions tasting like vinegar (highly unlikely), dilute the DWV with water (50/50) before spraying your board. No more tears!

Image by Peter Jung

 Tick repellent

It's that time of year and ticks are becoming a real problem here in Western Pennsylvania. They probably are in other areas, too, so this information is vital. If you have pets that venture outdoors, it is important that you protect them from ticks and the diseases they can cause. 

Here's the formula:

1 cup water
2 cups distilled white vinegar (ticks hate the smell)
2 TBSP vegetable or almond oil (must be an oil that contains sulfur, which is a tick repellent as well)

If you add a few tablespoons of peppermint oil, lemon juice, or citrus oil, your pet will smell sweet to you, but both ticks and fleas will find the aroma repulsive. 

Simply spray the mixture onto your pet's coat a few times a day (depending on how long he's outside). Just make sure you don't spray his face (this would sting his eyes!) or the delicate section on the other end of his body (Ouch!).

Just as important -- keep the ticks off yourself and other family members by whipping together the water and vinegar like above, but skip the vegetable/almond oil and add 10-20 drops of an essential oil that pleases your olfactory senses. In addition to citrus and peppermint oils, eucalyptus oil also repels ticks.

Before heading out, lightly mist your clothing, skin, and hair. Reapply every four hours or so.

Even with these precautions, make sure you do a thorough examination for ticks after being out in the yard or in the woods. You never know when their thirst for blood will outweigh their distaste of vinegar!

And on that pleasant note, I wish you a happy vinegar Friday and a fantastic itch-, tear-, and tick-free month of May!

Keeping it green with vinegar,

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