Before reading our selection of posts about essential oils, we recommend that you read the following introduction:
Most plants contain special chemical compounds in their tissues. Humans have used these chemicals throughout the ages in the form of essential oils. These oils can be used as placebos and medicine for a variety of ailments. They can be used for external grievances, to cure cuts and muscle aches for example, and internal problems, such as digestive or anxiety disorders. These substances also have aromatherapy uses, which we will talk about below.
Essential Oil Extraction
These oils can be found in almost all parts of a plant: in the leaves, bark, flowers, fruit peel, and in the sap. The pure essential oils are extracted from the plant material via distillation, cold-pressing, maceration, or hydrodistillation. These are the oils used for aromatherapy. When the extracted oils undergo further chemical processing, they turn into synthetic oils or essences to be used in perfume.
Healing Properties of Essential Oils
Essential oils work to improve our health in the same way that traditional medicine does. Some of the most important properties include:
Antibiotic and antiviral properties to fight all types of infection.
Stimulation of the immune system, which also improves blood circulation to the body and lymphatic system.
Antiseptic and anti-inflammatory characteristics.
They help regulate the nervous system and emotions.
How to Use Essential Oils
Just as you would take precautions before taking these oils internally, you must also be prudent when applying them to your skin. In fact, both pure and synthetic essential oils can be harmful to the skin if they are not used with caution.
If you want to use essential oils as air fresheners or perfume, there are numerous accessories that will help you get the best results. One of these products is an essential oil diffuser. They come in a variety of styles, but the main function of a diffuser is similar to a humidifier. Following the instructions, you will add a specific amount of water and essential oil to the diffuser. Once full, the water and oil are turned into vapor by ultrasonic waves or a similar technology, thus creating the desired aromatic effect.
Other diffusers may use electricity or an open flame to heat the water and oils to evaporation. Diffusers with a flame are called essential oil burners, which include candles that produce fragrance. Another type of burner consists of a small bowl for the oil that is placed on a stand over the candle. When the candle is lit, it warms the bowl and the oil evaporates.
Regardless of the method you choose, it’s important to understand how to use your essential oil diffuser or burner safely.
Benefits of Smelling Essential Oils
Smelling essential oils offers many benefits for your mind and body. When you smell essential oils, several things happen. The lungs readily absorb the natural formulas, creating noticeable therapeutic benefits for your body. One example that you are probably familiar with is eucalyptus essential oil, which is inhaled to alleviate nasal congestion. The oils also stimulate a positive reaction in your brain. This reaction may vary from relaxing, energizing, or soothing, depending on the essential oil that you are smelling.
Of course, it’s important to use essential oils in the recommended doses and by following the correct methods. If not, they can have undesirable effects, like any other health practice.
Benefits of Topical Application of Essential Oils
Essential oils can also be applied topically, on the skin, where they can be absorbed into the bloodstream. The compounds in essential oils can help promote good health, hygiene, and beauty. As we mentioned above, these oils are pure, so they are concentrated and powerful. You should never apply essential oils to your skin without diluting them.
To apply essential oils to your skin, you must first dilute them with a carrier oil. A carrier oil is another type of oil, such as a cold-pressed vegetable oil, which is used to dilute the essential oil for topical application. Some common carrier oils include sweet coconut oil, olive oil, and grapeseed oil.
Essential Oil Blends
Essential oils smell great on their own, but they can also be mixed to make complex and captivating aroma blends. Essential oils blends can also be made to measure for specific aromatherapy applications. When two or more essential oils are mixed together for a specific aromatherapeutic purpose, it is called a synergy essential blend. A synergy essential blend is considered more powerful and more effective than the individual oils by themselves.
Homemade Essential Oils
As we’ve mentioned, the use of pure or synthetic essential oils requires a lot of knowledge and consultation if you want to maximize the health benefits. For that reason, we recommend talking to an aromatherapy expert before trying your hand at homemade essential oils.
Although some people may try to extract essential oils directly from the plant or fruit, there are other steps to consider. To obtain essential oils for topical use or for aromatherapy, it’s necessary to mix a base oil (such as olive or almond oil) with the specific essential oil. The oil used depends on the specific aroma and properties that you want, which is why most people buy it already distilled.
Safety Precautions with Essential Oils
At the moment, there is a huge selection of scented oil products on the market. Many of these products are marketed as aromatherapeutic, even though they are made with artificial ingredients. The bottle may even say “made with essential oils” or “made with natural ingredients”.
We have the moral obligation to say that claims like these do not guarantee a good aromatherapy product, as they may still contain high levels of artificial oils and only a miniscule amount of the true essential oil. If an essential oil product is truly pure and natural, it will list that oil at “100%” on the ingredient label.
Don’t take essential oils internally, unless under the guidance of a qualified aromatherapist who has received due training in this mode of administration.
If you’ve ever tried Thai food, you are probably familiar with the flavor of lemongrass. It is a refreshing, energetic flavor used in many South Asian cuisines. But what is lemongrass and how can this essential oil benefit your health? Well, the first thing to know is that lemongrass is, as the name implies, aContinue reading “Lemongrass Essential Oil”
Is vanilla an essential oil? Many readers ask us this question. Perhaps you have even seen products that are marketed as vanilla oil. The truth is that vanilla essential oil does not exist. We know; it’s very disappointing, especially since there are products that appear to be made of pure vanilla. That vanilla soap scentContinue reading “Vanilla Essential Oil”
Vetiver is an unusual and sophisticated scent. It’s popular around the world. But what is vetiver essential oil and what is it good for? Vetiver is a grass plant from southeast Asia. It has been used by humans for a long time because it minimizes erosion in agricultural environments and it can be used asContinue reading “Vetiver Essential Oil”
Patchouli is a scent with lots of associations. You may associate this smell with the hippie movement or with Eastern medicine and spirituality. Did you know that patchouli is also a wonderful perfume and health supplement? The patchouli scent is extracted from the plant, which grows in Southeast Asia and South America. The leaves ofContinue reading “Patchouli Essential Oil”
In recent years, grapefruit has made a comeback as a popular citrus fruit and fragrance. This sweet, tart, and summery fruit is an important ingredient in household cleaners, perfumes, and cocktails. The best way to enjoy grapefruit is with the essential grapefruit oil. This substance is extracted from the natural fruit peel, creating a pure,Continue reading “Grapefruit Essential Oil”
When I first began learning about essential oils, I kept seeing the word bergamot. I assumed it was a type of spice, perhaps a rare herb. The truth surprised me. Bergamot is a citrus fruit, similar to a large lemon. And it’s actually not so rare; I’ve encountered bergamot frequently because it’s a main ingredientContinue reading “Bergamot Essential Oil”
Cypress is a common evergreen tree. It’s not as fragrant as cedar or as majestic as pine, but it does have its own unique properties and health benefits. When the essential oil is extracted from the organic cypress foliage, a light yellow transparent liquid is produced. Cypress essential oil is wonderful. It can improve allContinue reading “Cypress Essential Oil”
Cedar is a versatile, beautiful tree, like the pine. Its wood is praised for its warm reddish color and rich, distinctive smell. This smell can be captured and distilled in the form of cedar essential oil, which is extracted mainly from the foliage of this tree. Cedar, or cedarwood, essential oil has some important healthContinue reading “Cedar Essential Oil”
Normally we begin a specific oil article by connecting our readers with the plant that produces the essential oil of discussion. People are already familiar with lavender and basil, so it is not hard to imagine using those essential oils. However, myrrh is somewhat of a mystery. So we’re going to pose a more basicContinue reading “Myrrh Essential Oil”
Here at Aromatherapia.org, basil is one of our favorite ingredients. There is nothing quite as tasty as organic basil on a homemade pizza or lemonade infused with fresh basil from the garden. This savory, sweet leafy herb is used to add flavor to many cuisines, but it is also an important health supplement. Basil essentialContinue reading “Basil Essential Oil”
Every culture has its own characteristic smells which related to the cuisine, hygiene, and customs of that culture. In many countries, the aroma of pine trees is unmistakably associated with Christmas, family, and the holiday spirit. If you’ve ever had a Christmas tree in your home, you probably recognize and cherish the fresh scent ofContinue reading “Pine Essential Oil”
Herbs are wonderful. We grow them in our gardens, add them to recipes, and even use them to heal our bodies and minds. Thyme is one such herb. It has so many benefits for our health that most people aren’t even aware of. The most effective way to use thyme to promote wellness is asContinue reading “Thyme Essential Oil”
If you’ve ever been to a barbecue or outdoor summer gathering, you’ve probably seen people lighting special candles to keep the bugs away. These popular candles are usually made with a citronella ingredient. But what is citronella? Citronella is the name for the essential oil that comes from several Asian grasses. This essential oil isContinue reading “Citronella Essential Oil”
Jasmine essential oil comes from the blossoms of the jasmine plant. This plant is celebrated for its wonderful fragrance and charming tiny flowers. People plant it in their gardens to enjoy a bit of color and whimsy, especially near patios and over doorways. But Jasmine has benefits that extend far beyond the realm of aesthetics.Continue reading “Jasmine Essential Oil”
In this article, we’re going to talk about clove essential oil. Now, clove may sound familiar to people and you may have seen it sitting in your mom’s spice rack, but it isn’t as popular as say, cinnamon or nutmeg. It’s got a particular scent and flavor, which is why it’s used in many desserts.Continue reading “Clove Essential Oil”
Geraniums are one of the most popular flowering plants in the world. They come in a wide variety of bombastic colors and provide continuous blooms throughout the summer. Unlike rose or lavender, geranium is not well-known for its scent. So would you be surprised to hear that geranium is a truly amazing essential oil? Well,Continue reading “Geranium Essential Oil”
One of the most heavenly travel experiences in the world has to be walking through Seville, Spain during the springtime. The sun is already warm, the people are ready to party, and the air is infused with the intoxicating scent of orange blossoms. It’s both romantic and electrifying, sensations that can be used to describeContinue reading “Orange Essential Oil”
Many readers will remember a certain sensation from childhood: the crisp smell and warm relief of a cold cream on your chest. When you had a head cold accompanied with terrible congestion, your parents probably put Vick’s VapoRub on your chest. It’s a common treatment worldwide, with its memorable mentholated scent and soothing properties. ButContinue reading “Eucalyptus Essential Oil”
Cinnamon is one of the most popular winter scents. It’s associated with warmth and comfort, which is why it’s a crucial ingredient in many autumnal desserts and drinks. You’ve probably seen it in stick or powder form. But where do cinnamon and cinnamon essential oil come from? The Cinnamon Tree Cinnamon is produced by aContinue reading “Cinnamon Essential Oil”
Have you ever seen a sandalwood tree? There are a variety of different kinds growing everywhere from Australia and the South Pacific to Nepal and Pakistan. These trees are leafy, fragrant, and highly valuable. Let’s find out what makes these trees so special. Here’s a hint: essential oils. Sandalwood oil is extracted from the woodContinue reading “Sandalwood Essential Oil”
So far on this page, we’ve discussed some fairly common essential oils, like lavender, lemon, and peppermint. But have you ever heard of calendula? It may sound like the name of a Roman emperor or a Harry Potter spell, but it’s actually a type of marigold with golden yellow flowers. The scientific name for thisContinue reading “Calendula Essential Oil”
Lemon essential oil is the pure essence of the lemon plant. It is extracted from the peel of the lemon fruit, which creates a fragrant and potent essential oil. Like the citrus fruit, this oil has a range of wonderful properties for your health. Uses of Lemon Essential Oil This oil is an invigorating choiceContinue reading “Lemon Essential Oil”
Can you imagine a setting more idyllic and tranquil than a rose garden? In many places it’s a spring tradition to wander the garden paths, soaking up the delicate colors and fragrant blooms. Roses are, to put it simply, perfection. That’s why it should come as no surprise that rose essential oil is equally belovedContinue reading “Rose Essential Oil”
Frankincense: it sounds familiar to anyone with a vague religious upbringing, but most people don’t have the slightest idea about the uses or properties of this mysterious substance. Let’s unmask this mystical essential oil and discover how it’s being used today. To begin with, frankincense is not just an oil. It is extracted from aContinue reading “Frankincense Essential Oil”
When I was younger, my mother used to give me ginger chews when we went on road trips. I remember the warm, spicy flavor in my mouth and the way it tickled my stomach. It helped alleviate my motion sickness. That’s because ginger is more than a plant; it’s an important component of herbal medicine.Continue reading “Ginger Essential Oil”
Rosemary: it’s that scraggly Mediterranean herb that you may have seen growing in desert gardens. Perhaps you have tasted it in a loaf of bread or a lamb roast. Could this plant really have any special properties? The truth is, we see this plant all the time without realizing the amazing health benefits that itContinue reading “Rosemary Essential Oil”
Oregano…isn’t that a pizza topping? Yes, yes, it is. Many people may be familiar with this aromatic herb because of its culinary uses. However, oregano has many more properties for you to take advantage of, particularly in the realm of health and wellness. Oregano essential oil is the pure essence of this plant. The oilContinue reading “Oregano Essential Oil”
Peppermint: it’s a smell we associate with crisp cleanliness, like fresh breath and chewing gum. But why did we start using peppermint for these purposes? And where does the peppermint essence come from? In this article, we’ll explain everything about the origins, uses, and benefits of peppermint essential oil. To begin, it’s important to understandContinue reading “Peppermint Essential Oil”
Have you ever had oily skin problems? Have you ever experienced a rash or fungus that you just couldn’t get rid of? Tea tree essential oil may be the solution to your problems. But what is tea tree oil and where does it come from? The tea tree is, in fact, a real tree, andContinue reading “Tea Tree Essential Oil”
Essential oils are the cornerstone of aromatherapy, with the most popular and recognizable being lavender essential oil. It’s produced from the flowering lavender plant, which is found all over the world, most notably in France. The oil comes from the flower and it has a sweet, soothing smell. The best lavender essential oil is 100%Continue reading “Lavender Essential Oil”