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Aromatherapy 101

Although the use of essential oils for aromatherapy isn’t new by any means, it has recently taken the world by storm. People have been using aromatherapy since the 11th century for medicinal purposes and today, aromatherapy is known to relieve stress, boost energy, improve memory, along with many other health benefits. Some even have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. So many people, more specifically young women, are enjoying the therapeutic effects of essential oils in recent years. It seems as though the key component to every girls’ dorm room is an essential oil diffuser; so what’s the big deal? Here’s all you need to know about the growing art of aromatherapy.

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Essential oils are usually extracted from plants or fruits through steam distillation. Specifically chosen plants are held over boiling water and the steam pulls the oil out of the plant by breaking down its cells. Because water and oils don’t mix, the two separate, and the essential oil is produced—voila! When you inhale essential oils, it stimulates the olfactory system of the brain, the part that’s connected to smell. The olfactory system influences the endocrine system and the autonomic nervous system. These two systems control your mood, metabolism, heart rate, digestion, and so much more! If you want to start experimenting with some Essential oils, these are a good place to start!

Eucalyptus– Eucalyptus oil is specifically known for its respiratory health benefits. It can help with coughs, colds, and sore throats. Eucalyptus oil’s anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and anti-phlegm properties work very well to open congested airways and fight the household cold.

Lemon/Citrus Fruits– Lemon Balm oil is proven to sharpen memory, increase focus, and boost one’s problem solving skills. Other citrus oils, like orange oil, increase collagen production in the skin to make you appear younger. It can also detoxify the body, increase circulation, and improve skin tone and texture.

Peppermint– Peppermint oil works on the digestive system by speeding up the rate of digestion. The oil will alleviate heartburn, indigestion, upset stomach, and gas. Peppermint oil is effective because it contains menthol that relaxes the muscles in the stomach.

Lavender/Floral Scents– Lavender oil is widely known to help with sleep issues. Chamomile, another floral oil, also helps with insomnia. Inhaling these oils produce a mild sedative effect on the brain, which makes you feel sleepy. They both relieve anxiety effects for those who suffer from anxiety disorders.

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The Problematic Profits Behind Netflix’s Young Adult Content


You’ve probably noticed an increase in the number of obnoxious teen romances under the “trending” section of your favorite streaming service’s homepage recently. The trailers feature similar patterns: narration from a misunderstood and ostracized high school student, an overwhelming amount of synth pop, a tone-deaf social commentary and some type of forced minority representation. Each month, another one of these poorly made films or TV shows are rushed off the assembly line. Each month another scandal erupts, bringing more attention and more views to the lazy and reckless content. Netflix has created a perfect algorithm involving low budget set designs, cheap and naive cast members, easily manipulated, small-time directors, and badly executed themes about eating disorders, sexual assault, politics of sexuality, and mental illness. It’s profitable, it’s destructive, and it’s absolutely genius.

Netflix’s first big time hit in teen content was of course 13 Reasons Why. This show had a cast of unknown actors and the backing of executive producer, teen idol, and former Disney Channel star Selena Gomez. The show, which is based on a popular novel of the same name, is about a young girl, Hannah Baker, dealing with depression. She leaves several tapes for her peers detailing her traumas and blaming them for her eventual death. The show also includes a graphic depiction of rape and suicide. When the series was first released it resulted in an uproar of criticism and spectacle from tween magazines such as J-14 to critically acclaimed news outlets like the New York Times. NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, wrote an article bashing the teen show’s depiction of depression, warning that it was harmful to young audiences. Despite, or perhaps because of this storm of controversy, the show became wildly popular with young people everywhere who began binging the show in droves. Netflix heard the critics, the enraged parents, and the psychological professionals who said the show was dangerous and wrote the second season anyway.

Next came the show Insatiable, about a high school girl, Fatty Patty, who is bullied about her weight until she is attacked by a homeless man. This event results in her mouth being wired shut. Patty is able to lose the weight and becomes a vengeful beauty queen determined to use her new found beauty as a way of getting back at the people who bullied her. This show, like 13 Reasons Why, carelessly simplifies serious issues like a binge eating disorder which is boiled down to a punchline and pedophilia that’s waved off as satire. Again a wave of controversy ensued leading to the berating of the director and actors, the pawns of the Netflix empire, who were harassed online. Netflix heard the critics from afar, saw the outcry from teens struggling with eating disorders, disregarded the comments about statutory, and made plans for a second season.

This pattern has happened again and again with movies like The Kissing Booth; a low budget film based off of a Wattpad story about a girl in an arguably abusive relationship with her best friend’s controlling older brother. Again, in Dude, a pathetic excuse for a film where teens consider using drugs as a personality trait. Also, another rape scene is poorly handled. Again, in Sierra Burgess is a Loser, when a young woman decides to catfish an unsuspecting classmate. She even engages in non-consensual acts with him after weeks of manipulation and stalking.

These films are horrible influences for young audiences and they draw on tropes and cliches that should have long since been left in the past. It is irresponsible of Netflix to continue to create these films despite how enticing the money looks. Sierra Burgess is a Loser was written and filmed in just over a month. In that same amount of time, Netflix could have bothered to write a story that was just as cheesy and low-budget, but with a script that wasn’t controversial and didn’t reinforce negative ideas about body types and romantic relationships. One of Netflix’s better movies To All the Boys I Loved Before, did just that. The movie was simple, heart-warming and featured some much needed Asian representation in the mainstream film industry. This movie was just, as if not more, popular than Sierra Burgess is a Loser. Hopefully, Netflix will take note of the success that can come with decent and thematically sound teen content.

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