Essential Oils Guide

Essential oils have amazing uses for everything from pampering and healing yourself to cleaning and helping with various ailments. Essential oil is an aromatic liquid extracted from leaves, twigs, berries, bark, wood, root, flowers, citrus peels, or other plant matter. They are not actually oily, but have more of a water-like feel. Though essential oils are natural, they are very concentrated and should be used with caution.

A few things to keep in mind:

  • Most essential oils should not be used undiluted on the skin (except for lavender, tea tree, German chamomile, rose, sandalwood, and geranium). Always dilute essential oils with a carrier oil (sweet almond, jojoba, sesame, grapeseed, etc.) unless you know it is safe to use undiluted. To test if you are sensitive to a particular oil, combine 1 or 2 drops to a teaspoon of carrier oil in a small container. Dab a small amount to your wrist or the crook of your arm and wait for 24 hours.
  • Don’t use undiluted essential oils on pets, especially cats, as certain oils can be toxic to them.
  • Use extra caution if you have a serious health condition or are pregnant.
  • Educate yourself about the properties and contraindications of each oil before using it.

You can find over 100 essential oil uses, benefits and sideeffects here. Separated by what you’re wanting from aromatherapy and also in alphabetical order.

I have used Lemongrass EO in my homemade deodrant, Lavender EO in my whipped body butter, Peppermint EO in my Beeswax Lip Balm and Tea Tree EO for occasional blemishes and as antibacterial cleaner. Since I am always looking for natural solutions for my health and beauty regimen. I will definetly use more essential oils in future for health and beauty benefits and also for house cleaning etc. So I will update this post as I learn more about essential olis.

Essential Oils:

  • Distilled plant oils
  • Very strong aroma
  • Highly concentrated and must be diluted (to avoid skin & eye irritation)
  • Never go rancid, but lose their effectiveness the more they’re exposed to air
  • Evaporate quickly
  • Used in aromatherapy (stress relief, mood balancing, boosting immune systems, etc.)
  • Add them to anything with carrier oils, like lotion, bath oils, etc., or without, like air fresheners, hair fresheners, or homemade shampoos and body washes, etc.

Here are some of the most common essential oils and their powerful health benefits:

1. Lavender: This highly versatile oil is best used for its soothing properties. Lavender relaxes the mind and body, and helps aid in reducing inflammation.To reduce stress, try applying this oil to a small area of skin, or adding a few drops to a diffuser or pillow for a good nights sleep.

2. Peppermint: Just a whiff of this oil can provide you with a natural burst of energy and improve mental alertness. Peppermint oil can be used as massage oil, lotion, and mouthwash. It also helps alleviate symptoms of congestion and aids in digestion. Try adding a drop of peppermint oil to your herbal tea to help improve digestion.

4. Bergamot:  This citrus scented essential oil is widely used in perfumes and colognes. Bergamot is used to treat stress, anxiety, as well as a number of skin conditions like eczema. It’s important that this oil is diluted before applying to the skin, as it can potentially burn skin if applied in its pure form. Bergamot can also be used as incense or in a vaporizer.

5. Rosemary: Known for its rejuvenating effects, this oil can help relieve headaches, boost your memory, alleviate stress, and stimulate circulation in the scalp to treat dandruff and other scalp-related conditions. Try adding a few drops of rosemary oil to your shampoo for healthy, shiny hair.

6. Tea Tree:  One of the most popular and effective essential oils, tea tree oil is widely used to fight infections and boost the immune system. Tea tree oil’s healing benefits are immense and can be used to treat skin conditions, cuts and burns, dandruff, athlete’s foot, and blemishes among many others. Try dabbing a drop of this oil on skin to help heal blemishes or add a few drops to your shampoo to improve scalp health.

7. Chamomile: This oil has powerful calming benefits. It is also an effective mood booster. Chamomile can be used in steam or vapor therapy to help relieve stress.

8. Ylang -Ylang: This oil has calming properties and is beneficial for all skin types—especially oily, congested, or inflamed skin. Ylang-Ylang has a sweet flowery fragrance and can be found in a variety of different skin and hair products. Try blending a few drops into your lotion or add to your bath to help unwind after a long day.

9. Lemongrass: Lemongrass is used for treating digestive tract spasms, stomachache, high blood pressure, convulsions, pain, vomiting, cough, achy joints (rheumatism), fever, thecommon cold, and exhaustion. It is also used to kill germs and as a mild astringent.Some people apply lemongrass and its essential oil directly to the skin for headache, stomachache, abdominal pain, and muscle pain. By inhalation, the essential oil of lemongrass is used as aromatherapy for muscle pain. In food and beverages, lemongrass is used as a flavoring. For example, lemongrass leaves are commonly used as “lemon” flavoring in herbal teas.
In manufacturing, lemongrass is used as a fragrance in soaps and cosmetics. Lemongrass is also used in making vitamin A and natural citral.

Uses for essential oils:

  • Massage – 5 drops per tsp. of base oil or lotion
  • Inhale- 1-2 drops in boiling water or on a tissue
  • Bathe- 8-10 drops in bath water
  • Body- 5-15 drops in 4 oz of base product
  • Washing machine- 10-20 drops per load
  • Car vent- 2-3 drops in 1/2 the vents

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