What are flower elixirs and how can you incorporate them into your wellness routine?
There's nothing quite like receiving a bouquet of flowers. It uplifts, invigorates, and lends a pop of colour to a dull space. Understanding the transformative powers of flowers is no easy feat, but for flower alchemist Katie Hess, harnessing the power of Gaia's ephemeral creation is but second nature to her. As the founder of Lotus Wei, a floral apothecary brand praised by the likes of Johnny Depp and The Oprah Magazine's creative director Adam Glassman, Hess believes that flower remedies can be used to ease the heart, heal the body, and awaken the mind. Below, we find out more about what flower alchemy entails and the ways in which you can utilise flower elixirs in your life.
For the uninitiated, tell us more about what flower alchemy is about.
Flower alchemy is about using the healing powers of flowers to catalyse transformations within us. Flower elixirs are one of the most powerful, effective, and safe ways to antidote the stress and static of daily life. Flower elixirs, also known as flower remedies, when taken on a regular daily basis (four to five times each day), help to shift your state of mind within several days. Long-term lovers of flower elixirs say they are positively and profoundly life-changing.
Flower elixirs are made with flowers harvested from the wild or grown in special gardens where flowers are particularly vibrant, alive, and in full bloom. The flowers are hand-collected following cycles of the moon before it is put through several dilutions. The final dilution no longer has any plant parts in it and retains only the energetic imprint or essence of the flower.
When and how did your journey with flower alchemy begin?
After graduating from college and living in Europe for several years, I moved to central Mexico. It was there that I first discovered flower remedies and studied with a flower essence expert from Spain. I was inspired by the way he taught. He didn't only teach me about flowers and their benefits, but he explained that if we could get 3% of the world's population to use flower remedies regularly, it could change the outcome of the future in a very positive way. It was a big vision, one I wanted to be a part of. After working with clients in Mexico, I moved back to the states and provided flower essence therapy consultations for over a decade. After witnessing so many incredible transformations in my clients, I wanted everyone in the world to have the opportunity to experience the same, so I decided to make products in order to reach more people.
What's the difference between a flower essence and an essential oil?
Flower elixirs don't have a scent and they work through the acupuncture meridians. It is a liquid infusion of a flower or plant's 'chi' (life force). On the other hand, an essential oil is distilled or extracted from the plant into a highly aromatic oil.
What's the most effective way to reap the full benefits of a flower elixir?
There are so many benefits to using flower remedies. In a nutshell, they eliminate the ego and show us our full potential. Mother Earth has an antidote for just about any wacky problem, head trip or stressful situation we could imagine. We all have our inherent set of self-limiting patterns and the magic of flowers is that they unravel those patterns and show us the real version of us without all the filters.
In terms of choosing flowers, I strongly believe you intuitively know best what you need. For example, you can choose the flowers you are visually attracted to and 99.9% of the time, it resonates with exactly what you need. Curious to test that theory? Click here and choose three of 24 flowers you're most drawn to. You'll then receive a nine-paragraph report detailing your state of mind right now.
The easiest way to take a flower elixir is by putting it in the mouth. This way, you can ingest five drops, five times each day. Alternatively, you can mix a dropperful of liquid in your water bottle and drink it throughout the day.
What's the most unusual flower you've encountered?
Black Bat flowers are pretty amazing and kind of freaky! It looks like a huge bat with tiger whiskers and eel teeth. The Jade Vine flower is unusual too and has the most gorgeous light green-blue colour similar to that of a jade bracelet. Its petals taper off in little hooks! Both are tropical flowers and can possibly be found in Singapore.
Which essence from Lotus Wei would you prescribe for someone who's stressed out at work?
I would definitely recommend a flower elixir called Inner Peace. It is a blend of flower elixirs that induces calm, comfort and confidence. Red Hibiscus brings relief and a fresh perspective in times of stress while Lupine helps you to feel more grounded while navigating times of change.
Tell us about your morning routine.
Each morning, I wake up to the alarm of my three dogs. I make them a nice breakfast and include all kinds of Chinese herbs for the elderly dog. I drink lime water before bringing my herbal tea and cup of coffee (yum!) outside along with Joy, my elderly dog. She sits with me while I listen to the birds before I practise Tai Chi for 30 minutes or so. If I have extra time, I sneak in a bit of salsa dancing, then I head to my bedroom to meditate. I really cherish my time in the morning. It's a time for me to be alone and I love it. Sometimes, I also make time to jot down creative ideas or next steps in my business.
You've studied with Buddhist masters such as The Dalai Lama. What was he like as a person? What lessons did you learn from him?
The Dalai Lama is like the sunshine. Truly, when he is close to you, or even just walking nearby or stepping out of the car, it's as if a huge ray of light is expanding outward and it affects your body and mind in a very joyful, peaceful, energised way. It feels as if you've entered another realm. His lessons are unlimited and come through stories, words and his powerful, heart-melting energy. He is gentle, loving, humble and compassionate. In his presence you acutely feel the impermanence and preciousness of life. It is an experience that is — on many levels — absolutely unforgettable.