Mad Dogs and English Women

The first warm rays of sunshine are treacherous: a walk to the park without sunscreen and you are just steps away from irreparable facial bedlam, your epidermis a dreadful boiled lobster just like Lila’s in The Heartbreak Kid. Not a pretty sight and a very silly thing to do!

UVBs, these lovely rays kissing your silk skin, are vitamin D boosting and bone strengthening champions. But, with the UVA’s, their partners in crime, they are also deadly. Hugh Jackman, the Wolverine himself, suffered skin cancer. He encourages his fans to wear sunscreen.

Since you failed to do so and the damage is done, take a cool shower to calm the burn. Then grab your bottle of St John’ wort oil – which in fact is an oil infused with St John’ wort flowers, also called red oil. This potent panacea works wonders to soothe the pain caused by burns and sunburn and accelerates the healing process. This magic macerate can often prevent blistering of the skin and minimize or eliminate scaring.

If you or your neighbour happen to have a St John’s Wort shrub in your garden, you can make this fabulous oil yourself. Just follow the herbalist Marie-Antoinette Mulot’s recipe:

Gather 500 gr St John’s wort flowers. Pack them tightly in a glass mason jar and cover with a litre olive oil. Close the jar and put it in the sun for 7 weeks. Shake it vigorously once a day. When the oil is ready, with a nice red colour, filter and pour it into lovely glass bottles. They’ll keep in the fridge for about a year.

In case of a rotten summer – don’t worry. Keep cool and replace sun basking the jar by a 2 hour-dip in a double boiler. Don’t forget to give some to your neighbour if his flowers contributed to the preparation.

              Other lovely recipes are waiting for you  in     Le Dictionnaire à tout faire des huiles.