Yoga Props

Try these simple DIY yoga projects to add a little sparkle to your yoga space!

DIY Savasana aromatherapy eye pillow 

DIY

This easy-to-make eye pillow takes less than half an hour to complete and is a great gift for yoga-loving friends or even a kid’s craft project. You’ll need a sewing machine, but only beginner sewing skills. Use fabric off-cuts, op-shopped fabric or even an old tablecloth for extra eco-friendly bonus points!

Materials required: 

  • 2 x 12cm x 26cm scrap pieces of non-stretch fabric. Cotton drill works best. Make sure the fabric is clean, ironed and the two pieces match up to the same size.
  • 1 cup of rice/lentils/buckwheat/popping corn (whatever is on hand and roughly no larger than a pea)
  • 1/2 cup of lavender buds/rosebuds/chamomile

Directions: 

  • If your fabric is patterned, make sure your two fabric rectangles have the printed sides facing each other, then pin them together.
  • Sew the two panels together on three sides, leaving a 1cm seam. Leave one of the shorter sides open to fill with your mixture.
  • Make sure you reinforce the seams by sewing over your stitches more than once.
  • Sew around the three sides a second time, half a centimetre closer to the raw edges to reinforce and stop any leaks once your eye pillow is complete.
  • Remove pins and turn inside-out so the patterned side of your seams are on the outside and your raw edges are hidden inside.
  • Iron flat, then tuck the raw edges inside on the fourth side around 1cm. Pin that side together so the edges match up, iron flat then remove pins.
  • Mix the filling together and pour into the pillow. Holding it upright, make sure the raw edges are still tucked into the eye pillow where you ironed the seams then pin the two pieces of fabric together a second time, close to the top.
  • Still using your sewing machine, stitch along the edge a few times, making sure to sew all the way to each side.
  • Remove pins, give your pillow a little shake and check for leaks.

Test your eye pillow out! After all that crafting you deserve a mini-meditation. Eye pillows help to reduce sensory stimulation, relax the muscles around the face and eyes and help you go deeper in your relaxation. Add a drop or two of your favourite essential oil (make sure it’s on the side facing up as you don’t want to cause any eye irritation), roll out your mat and get comfortable in Savasana.

Writer: Hollie is an all-round artist, silversmith and creator of Stay at Home Gypsy, specialising in unique, crystal jewellery made with love and intention in Byron Bay. www.stayathomegypsy.com

DIY yoga mat spray

DIY

Unless you’re a Bikram devotee, it’s possible that your yoga mat has remained a sweat-free zone over the cooler months of winter. With the coming of warming weather and more detoxifying asana flows, you may find your yoga mat glistening at the end of your class; a tribute to all those long side-angle holds or repeated sun salutations. Either way, it is important to remember to clean your yoga mat from time to time — for our own health and the noses of our fellow yogis! A simple DIY cleaner can be customised with your favourite essential oils which not only keeps your mat squeaky clean, but also smelling divine and offering uplifting properties that inspire your practice.

What you’ll need:

  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 cup of water
  • 10 drops of lavender essential oil
  • 10 drops of tea tree oil

Directions:

Find an empty spray bottle and clean well. Fill your bottle about 3/4 full with water, then pour in the vinegar almost to the top of the bottle. Add in the essential oils and give the bottle a good shake. Give your mat a few sprays after each use and wipe down with a clean cloth.

*Feel free to mix up your oils. The tea tree is great for sterilising, but other lovely oils include lemon, orange, peppermint, frankincense, or cinnamon. Try to ensure your oils are natural and organic where possible.

Writer: Kelly is a passionate writer and yogi who combined her love of writing with her forays into health and wellness. Kelly has travelled the world sharing ways to live simply, mindfully and sustainably through her work. www.bellaandbhakti.com

DIY crystal skincare 

diy

As humans, we tend to overthink and analyse things, so that we can ‘be sure’ that we’re getting it ‘right’. What I love about crystals is that there is so much that we don’t know. Crystal technology is nothing new, and neither is crystal healing. Crystals have been used for thousands of years, with records showing their existence in the lives of the ancient Sumerians, Greeks, Egyptians and Chinese.

What’s fascinating is that crystals were highly regarded in ancient times, and today we’re seeing a resurgence in their popularity. What a beautiful thing that we are embracing — the return to what our ancestors knew, respected and gained benefits from. There are different crystals for just about everything. Some are renowned for their cleansing, stress-relieving and purifying properties (for example, amethyst). Others for their soft energy of love, compassion, self-acceptance and peace (for example, rose quartz). And others for their warm, energising, abundant properties to help support the transformation of dreams and wishes in to tangible form (for example, citrine). Different crystals can impact the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of our being … it’s simply a matter of how we interact with them.

If you’re keen to use crystals in your skincare rituals, there has never been a better time as more and more artisan skincare makers are choosing to incorporate crystals into their manufacturing process. You can either choose the DIY approach, or enjoy the benefits with products already prepared for you.

How to cleanse your crystals

Crystals take on energy, just like we do, so when you get your newfound treasures home, bathe them in salt water. Or even better, take them down to the beach and bathe them in the ocean. Crystals also like to be cleansed and charged during a full moon. To do so, simply lay them on a natural surface under the full moon’s light.

DIY crystal preparations for skin, bath and body care

Create a crystal-infused beauty water by placing your cleansed and energised crystal in a glass bottle of purified spring water. Place this in the sun for one full day. Transfer the crystal-infused water to a small glass bottle with spritzer cap and use when cleansing your face.

Crystals to use

Rose quartz: helps to reduce redness

Amethyst: helps to improve moisture retention

Turquoise: helps to activate water balance and is particularly beneficial for dry skin, eczema and psoriasis

Quartz: has a cleansing and detoxifying effect on the skin

Opal: supports the formation of red blood cells

Blue Chalcedony: has a moisturising effect on the skin that helps with regenerating dehydrated and congested skin

Skin care containing crystals 

We’re spoilt for choice these days when it comes to the range of brands that are using crystal energies in their beauty elixirs. Numerous natural brands place crystals in their labs to energise the production process and products. Artisan makers are also adding crystal-infused water to their products, or placing a little cluster of crystals within the face mist bottle, to further energise the product.

Writer: Samantha Sargent is a natural skincare expert and distributor for AEOS skincare.

AEOS Energised Organics works with an alchemist who takes up to 12 months to transform solid crystal rocks into a liquid tincture that is then added to each product, so that the crystal can be absorbed by the skin, and into the bloodstream for assimilation. What the lab has found over years of honouring this alchemical process — that the ancients such as Hippocrates used to adhere to — is that the liquid crystal tinctures have an impact on both the emotional mind and the skin. www.aeos.net