Tips for protecting your skin against UV radiation

Around 90% of skin cancers can be avoided by adopting simple sun safe strategies, when UV levels reach 3 or above take action to protect your skin by following Skcin’s Five S’s of Sun Safety…

Slip on clothing

• Clothing can be one of the most effective barriers between our skin and the sun and should be considered the first
line of defence.
• Clothing should always cover shoulders, but ideally as much skin as possible.
• A closer weave fabric will provide better protection.
• A high UPF rated fabric provides best protection.

Slop on sunscreen

• Always use a sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 30 or above.
• Make sure it’s broad-spectrum and carries a UVA symbol (ideally labelled minimum 4 star).
• Store in an accessible, cool place and remember to check the expiry date.
• Apply a generous amount to clean, dry, exposed skin 20 minutes before going outdoors.
• Regardless of the instructions all sunscreens should be re-applied at least every 2 hours (more often if perspiring)
and straight after swimming.
• Remember to protect your lips with an SPF 30+ lip balm.

Slap on a sun hat

• Always wear a hat with a wide brim that shades the face, neck, ears and cheeks.
• A close weave or UPF rated fabric will provide better protection.

Slide on some sunglasses

• Solar UV radiation can be damaging to the eyes, so wear quality sunglasses.
• Overall protection depends on the quality of the lens as well as the design.
• Look for the European CE mark, which indicates a safe level of protection.
• Those labelled with a high EPF (which ranges from 1-10) will provide best protection.
• Ensure they are close fitting and wrap-around to stop UVR entering the top and sides.
• Remember price has no reflection on the quality of protection.

Shade from the sun

• Shade can provide a good barrier between our skin and the sun.
• Seek shade whenever possible, particularly during peak UV hours 11am-3pm.
• Keep toddlers and babies in the shade at all times.

Visit for more information on protecting yourself from skin cancer.

“How complementary therapy has helped me” – a new survey for your clients

Have your complementary therapy treatments helped to improve the physical, mental or emotional wellbeing of your clients?

As a result of having treatments with you, have your clients…

  • Noticed an improvement in the problem they were seeking help for?
  • Noticed other improvements in their health and wellbeing, that they weren’t expecting?
  • Reduced the number of times they have needed to see their GP or other health professional?
  • Reduced the amount of prescribed or over-the-counter medication they were taking?
  • Reduced the amount of care they have needed from another person?
  • Been able to return to work, or activities and hobbies that they previously enjoyed?
  • Felt motivated to make other changes to their lifestyle, such as improving their diet or taking more exercise?

If the answer is ‘yes’ to one or more of these questions, then we’d like to invite you to share a short new survey with your clients.

What is the purpose of this survey?

The aim is to gather some ‘grassroots’ data – direct from clients/patients themselves – about the positive impact that complementary therapy is having on their health and wellbeing. This will then be presented to the media, government and health and care agencies, to demonstrate (among other things) how complementary therapies can be used, alongside conventional medicine, to not only help address the needs of the individual, but to also take pressure off the health and care system.

We do not anticipate that this data alone will have the power to change hearts and minds overnight, but we are confident that it will enable us to have fruitful conversations with relevant government departments and Ministers about the next steps needed to ensure patients can access the best of both conventional and complementary healthcare.

How is this survey different to others?

Unlike some other surveys, this one is completed by the client/patient themselves. While professional bodies and individual therapists working in the therapy industry all continue to work tirelessly to promote the many benefits offered by complementary therapies, arguably, this can be seen to come from a position of bias and self-interest. We think it’s time to let the public have their say about what helps to improve their physical, mental and emotional health.

Is the survey limited to just complementary therapy?

No. While the dropdown menu does list a range of some of the most popular complementary and sports therapies used by the public, the person completing the form has the option to list any non-statutory regulated therapy that has helped to improve their health and wellbeing. For example, this might include advanced electrolysis, permanent make-up or skin camouflage.

What if my client can’t complete the survey themselves?

If your client is unable to complete the survey, for example, because they are too young or poorly, then a close relative, friend or carer can complete the form on their behalf.

What about data protection?

The information provided in the survey is completely anonymous and doesn’t require your client to share any personal information that would make them identifiable. However, please ensure that you have their permission to send them a link to the survey before doing so.

Can I share the survey with other therapists, for their clients to use?

Yes, as long as they are fully qualified, belong to another respected professional association and their therapies have helped to improve someone’s health and wellbeing. We suggest directing them to this blog item (simply copy and pate the URL), so that they have all of the information above, as well as a link to the survey.

Is there a closing date?

We are aiming to keep the survey live for a year and will be analysing the data on a regular basis. Our first analysis will be in early July 2021, so the sooner you can start sharing this survey with your clients and we get useful data back, the better.

How can my clients access the survey?

Please share one of the following links with your clients, which all go through to the same survey (simply copy and paste your chosen link):

Please complete this short survey

Please complete this short ‘Complementary therapy helped me’ survey

Finally, before sharing the survey with any clients, please have a look at the content but DO NOT complete this survey yourself, as it will create bias.

Feel inspired with our latest FHT Excellence Awards

Nominations for the FHT Excellence Awards are open until Wednesday 30 June and there has never been a better time to nominate yourself, with our new FHT Inclusive Therapy Business of the Year award and the relaunch of FHT Green Practice of the Year award.

No matter how big or small, we want to celebrate steps you have taken to make your therapy business more inclusive – or more green!

FHT Inclusive Therapy Business of the Year

Have you created a safe and inclusive space?

Perhaps you have adjusted your treatments so they can be adapted to suit different clients’ needs?

Maybe you’ve made a commitment to raise awareness of diversity and inclusion within the industry?

From changing the layout of your work space to allow more access, to diversifying your marketing collateral, to widening your knowledge about this topic and collaborating with others to make a difference, we’d love to hear from you, submit your nomination today.

FHT Green Therapy Business of the Year

Perhaps you have ditched single-use products in your salon or clinic, or developed a ‘green‘ product for professional therapists and their clients to enjoy?

From reducing, reusing and recycling to switching to green energy providers, sourcing eco-friendly therapy supplies to introducing air-purifying houseplants, we’d love to hear from you.

In these challenging times, it’s never been more important to showcase your work and show the many ways professional therapists can make a real difference.

The winner of each category will receive a certificate, trophy, logo for marketing materials and PR support to help spread the word in their local area, and nationally. Submit your nomination for the FHT Green Therapy Business of the Year award.

If you are interested in one of our categories listed below, visit to find out more.

  • Complementary Therapist of the Year
  • Sports Therapist of the Year
  • Beauty Therapist of the Year
  • Student of the Year
  • Tutor of the Year
  • Local Group Coordinator of the Year

Lavender – an essential oil profile

“Introduced in England by the Romans, lavender’s name is believed to come from the Latin word ‘lavare’ which means to ‘wash’ – a fitting descriptor for a plant that was used extensively in Roman bathing and for cleaning wounds.”

In each issue of FHT’s membership magazine, International Therapist, we publish a one-page essential oil profile that features a plant commonly used in aromatherapy and, quite often, can also be found in a range of cosmetic and household products.

As well as providing an introduction to the oil’s traditional and modern-day uses, we outline its chemical profile (which can vary according to a range of factors), its key therapeutic properties, indications for use, safety notes and one or two short research summaries.

As part of Aromatherapy Awareness Week, we thought we’d share the profile of one of the most well-known and versatile essential oils of all time – lavender.

Click here to read our lavender profile from International Therapist

Illustration: Shutterstock

Nominate a hero with Jennifer Young Training

Nominate a Hero who deserves a Hero Hamper containing a limited-edition Hero moisturiser 💫 🌱 

The past 12 months have been difficult for everyone, and for therapists in particular. FHT are working with the team at @JenniferYoungTraining to uplift spirits by creating an online scrapbook of the Heroes of the past 12 months, who deserve recognition, appreciation and the opportunity to relax with a luxury balm. 

If you know a therapist, lockdown, carer or NHS Hero who deserves to be featured and win the Hero Hamper, share your love and appreciation for them and uplift their spirits by entering the competition below. We have one Hero Hamper and two limited-edition Hero balms to give away. 

To Enter:

  1. Nominate a Hero by tagging them in the comments on Instagram (each comment counts as one entry. 
  2. Include why you have nominated them and why they deserve the Hero product – the more detail the better.  
  3. Ensure that you and your heroes have followed both @internationaltherapistmag and @jenniferyoungtraining 
  4. Share this post to your story and tag @internationaltherapistmag and @jenniferyoungtraining for an extra entry. 


  • Winner announced on 21st June 
  • UK only 
  • All your inspiring stories in the comments will be shared, to spread the love and uplift spirits.  
  • We will contact the winning nominated heroes directly. 
  • The nominated Hero must follow both @internationaltherapistmag and @jenniferyoungtraining for a chance to win. 

Aromatherapy Awareness Week – Essential oils to support skin conditions

In International Therapist Autumn 2017 we published a feature by Penny Price on how essential oils can be used to address skin conditions. We regularly share aromatherapy articles and research in International Therapist magazine which is a perk for FHT members, find out about becoming a member here.

Penny begins the article by taking a look at our skin structure and essential oils, she writes, ‘Essential oils can easily penetrate human skin because of their tiny molecular structure. This, in addition to their fat solubility, means they will dissolve in sebum and wend their way down through the layers of the skin until they reach the bloodstream.

‘Vegetable carrier oils do not penetrate the skin as the molecular weight of fi xed oils is high and therefore the structure too large. However, cold-pressed and virgin oils can improve the outward appearance of the skin, and traces of vitamins and other fat soluble elements can access the skin from the oil. Carrier oils can also help the surface layers of the skin by reducing inflammation.

‘Hydrolats can be the perfect answer as they are extremely gentle and can be used for all skin types. They do not fully penetrate the skin, yet can improve the appearance and impart antibacterial and anti-infl ammatory effects. They contain larger steroidal molecules, which are calming and antispasmodic. Hydrolats can be spritzed or applied with cotton wool.’

Read the full article here.

Have you been promoting the benefits of aromatherapy this Aromatherapy Awareness Week (7-13 June)? If so we would love to hear from you, get in touch by emailing FHT Deputy Editor, Leanne, at

Aromatherapy seminars at the FHT Virtual Congress

To celebrate the start of Aromatherapy Awareness Week (7–13 June 2021), we thought we’d take this opportunity to tell you about our two upcoming aromatherapy seminars at the FHT Virtual Congress, taking place on the 13 and 14 June 2021.

Aromatherapy and sleep with Penny Price

Aromatherapy for sleep! One of our modern ailments in this busy and stressful world is insomnia or being unable to sleep deeply enough for body and mind to recover from the day. Research has shown that aromatherapy techniques can effectively improve both sleep and quality and quality of life and is one of the best complementary health disciplines to do this.

Penny is Managing Director and Academy Principal of Penny Price Aromatherapy. An aromatherapist since 1983, Penny has been teaching aromatherapy since 1986. Penny set up her own school and company in 2003 and spends much of her time in product development and research, as well as releasing resources and spreading the word of aromatherapy through her blog and monthly webinars.

​Seminar length: 56 mins

Examination of six essential oil constituents with Kate Mulliss

This seminar is primarily aimed at those aromatherapists with some understanding of essential oil chemistry. It examines six constituents commonly found in various essential oils and examines some of the research around their potential actions. It will also look at the occurrence of each constituent in various essential oils and the overall therapeutic properties of some of the oils themselves.

Kate has worked as a complementary therapist for over 25 years and taught various complementary therapy qualifications since the late 1990s at her local tertiary college and for private training providers. She currently teaches CPD courses for qualified therapists at TEACH therapy in Wales. Her main therapy interests are in aromatherapy / essential oils and reflexology.

​Seminar length: 28 mins

Tickets to the FHT Virtual Congress are open until 12pm on Friday 11 June, book here.

Aromatherapy research

In each issue of FHT’s membership magazine, International Therapist, we publish a research section that features a short summary of four or five different studies that have recently appeared in peer-reviewed journals. As these studies help to highlight the potential health and wellbeing benefits of different therapies – often in a healthcare context – it’s not surprising that our members consistently vote* this as one of their ‘Top 3’ regulars in the magazine.

To celebrate the start of Aromatherapy Awareness Week (7–13 June 2021), we thought we’d take this opportunity to share four research summaries that focus on aromatherapy and different essential oils, which we have re-published on our blog for all to enjoy…

Bergamot essential oil reduces anxiety in patients prior to gallbladder surgery

Effects of lavender on children during dental treatment

Peppermint reduces postoperative nausea and vomiting in cardiac patients

Study validates the traditional use of helichrysum for acne

If you’d like to learn more about International Therapist and some of the many other benefits you receive as a member of the FHT, please visit

*In our 2021 FHT Member Survey, 70% of respondents chose research as a section of International Therapist that they were most likely to read and engage with.

Picture courtesy of Freepik

Study validates the traditional use of helichrysum for acne

Acne vulgaris (AV) is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that typically affects the face (99% of cases), chest (60% of cases) and back (15% of cases), with up to 95% of adolescents experiencing the skin condition to some extent (NICE, 2019).

It is characterised by non-inflammatory lesions known as comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) and, in more severe cases, inflammatory lesions (papules, pustules, nodules and cysts).

The condition can lead to scarring and changes in pigmentation, which in turn can contribute to psychological problems including an increased risk of depression, suicide, anxiety and low self-esteem.

Helichyrsum odoratissimum (L.) Sweet is a perennial shrub that has been used traditionally in the treatment of wounds, burns, eczema and pimples. In a paper recently published in Frontiers in Pharmacology, researchers provide details of their investigation into whether a methonolic extract of H. odoratissimum had the ability to target bacterial growth and pathogenic factors associated with acne progression (De Canha et al, 2019).

The results were positive, with the authors concluding that ‘this study provides scientific validation for the traditional use of H. odoratissimum as a possible treatment for acne, based on its antimicrobial effects and anti-inflammatory potential.

Click here to access the full paper

Did you enjoy this research summary?
The FHT features research summaries in each issue of International Therapist magazine. To find out more about the many benefits of being an FHT member, visit

De Canha MN, Komarnytsky S, Langhansova L, Lall N. (2019) Exploring the anti-acne potential of Impepho [Helichrysum odoratissimum (L.) Sweet] to combat Cutibacterium acnes virulence, Frontiers in Pharmacology. Published online. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.01559

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE, 2019). Clinical Knowledge Summary: Acne vulgaris: [accessed: 25 February 2020].

Photo courtesy of Freepik

Bergamot essential oil reduces anxiety in patients prior to gallbladder surgery

Surgery is an invasive procedure and widely considered to be a stressful event for most patients. Furthermore, ‘preoperative anxiety can result in several problems, including intravenous access problems, jaw tension, and coughing during anaesthesia induction’ (Paysar et al, 2020).

A small controlled trial study published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice (Pasyar et al, 2020) looked at the effects of bergamot essential oil on anxiety and salivary cortisol and alpha amylase levels* in 60 patients prior to laparoscopic cholecystectomy (gallbladder removal).

In the study participants were randomly allocated to an intervention or control group. Prior to surgery, the intervention group received two drops of bergamot oil (Citrus bergamia Risso) on a cotton ball, attached to their collar, and asked to breathe normally for 20 minutes. The control group received two drops of grapeseed oil on a cotton ball, attached to their collar, and asked to breathe normally for 20 minutes. Anxiety and saliva cortisol and alpha amylase measures were taken immediately before and after the 20 minutes.

During the study, no complications or side effects were reported, and the results showed that while there was no significant difference between the two groups in terms of saliva cortisol levels, the bergamot group saw a significant decrease in anxiety and alpha amylase levels after the intervention compared to the control group.

The authors of the study concluded that while further studies are needed, ‘considering the positive effects of aromatherapy using bergamot essential essence on anxiety and salivary alpha amylase activity, this aroma can be used as an available, effective and inexpensive material in patients prior to laparoscopic cholecystectomy’.

*The level of cortisol and alpha amylase in saliva can be considered biomarkers of stress and anxiety.

Click here to access the study abstract

Did you enjoy this research summary?
The FHT features research summaries in each issue of International Therapist magazine. To find out more about the many benefits of being an FHT member, visit

Pasyar N, Rambod M, Araghi F (2020). The effect of bergamot orange essence on anxiety, salivary cortisol, and alpha amylase in patients prior to laparoscopic cholecystectomy: a controlled trial study, Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 39:101153.

Picture courtesy of Freepik