An essential oil is a concentrated hydrophobic liquid containing variable aroma compounds from plants and has been used for thousands of years by various cultures. There are many uses for essential oils ranging from beauty care, household cleaning, aromatherapy and natural medicine. The important thing is getting the oils from an organic farmer that knows how to properly distill them, don’t use chemicals in the extraction process and that each batch has the proper phytochemical constituents. Essential oils contain phytochemicals which are plant-based chemicals and may belong to a specific category from Terpenoids, Alkaloids, Phenolic compounds, Glycosides, Carbohydrates, Proteins, Lipids, Nucleic acids and much more. Each phytochemical has different properties such as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antimicrobial.
There are over a hundred ways to use essential oils. Common practices include topical application, aromatic diffusion, and dietary consumption. I’ve listed just a small few to start with below.
Health and Healing
- Lime – Great for boosting your mood, energizing and it’s fresh.
- Frankincense (Olibanum) – used for respiratory and cough.
- Jasmine (Jasminum grandiflorum) – Uplifting and used for combating depression.
- Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia / Lavandula Officinalis) – Used for relaxation, fight stress and promote sleep.
- Car – Add a couple of drops to a cotton ball and clipping it to the air vent.
- House – Put your favorite scent on your faux flowers, in the closet or in a drawer for a fresher smell.
- Candles – After the candle has been lite for a few minutes add a few drops to melted wax, close to the wick with your favorite essential oil.
Carrier oils are a vegetable oil derived from the fatty part of the plant (seeds, nuts or kernels). There are several different types of carrier oils for specific therapeutic needs. Carrier oils are vegetable oils important for diluting essential oils, so they are safe to apply to your skin and/or ingest. The best carrier oils are refined with no additives and carrier oils should be cold pressed as they hold on to the properties because they aren’t subjected to heat. I use almond oil, Apricot, Jojoba, avocado, coconut, grapeseed, argan, and sunflower.
It is very important to understand how to combine your essential oils with carrier oils and aromaweb.com is a great place to find out how to properly use them. They also have Guides, Articles, Recipes, Books, Essential Oil profiles, Carrier Oil profiles, Hydrosol profiles and Resource links.