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Celebrating the Power of Plants for Conscious Living

Preserving Beauty like an Egyptian

By Faye Sakellaridis

Illuminate your complexion with elderflower, a beautiful, aromatic white herb used by ancient Egyptians to treat skin and preserve beauty. 

Fittingly, elderflower resides under the sign of Venus. Jackie Johnson of Herbal Academy of New England, a comprehensive resource for all things herbal, writes that the elderflower possesses "the presence of the goddess Venus herself." 

Jackie explains how the elderflower has been used for beauty treatment and other medicinal usages:

It seems appropriate that the elder is under the sign of Venus. When you begin working with its aromatic blooms, it’s easy to understand why the elder means purification and love in the language of flowers. In fact, when standing amid an elder in full bloom, one almost feels the presence of the goddess Venus herself.

Fittingly, the delicate flower helps women remain beautiful; it has been used since ancient Egyptian times for reducing wrinkles and age spots. It also inspired the poet Seamus Heaney when he wrote his Glanmore Sonnets:

He lived there in the unsayable light.

He saw the fuchsia in a drizzling noon,

The elderflowers at dusk like a risen moon

And green fields greying on the windswept heights.

Shamans and medicine people worldwide believed elder was a healing plant and commonly used it for upper respiratory ailments and topically for skin problems. Traditionally, our herbalist elders, such as Hippocrates, Dioscorides, and Pliney the Elder recognized its strength as a diuretic, diaphoretic, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and more. Recent research from Israel and the United Kingdom has confirmed some of these claims.

Head on to the full article for Jackie's list of ten delicious elderflower recipes and remedies.