And thank you for joining in Part Two of Essential Oils 101!
If you missed Part One … STOP! 🛑 ✋ check it out here:
In Part One, we go over the history, distilling processes and quality testing of essential oils. I believe in knowing as much as possible about something before throwing yourself into it. I, much like most, dabbled in essential oil use without knowing much about them, other than they were:
2. Used throughout history
That was enough to pique my interest, however, as a self proclaimed nerd, those nagging questions in my head demanded answers.
Knowing your E.O. and exactly how to use them can help set up the foundation for a true whole body wellness.
So let’s dive in!
Essential Oil Safety
Safety using oils is essential. (Like what I did there?! 😉)
No, but seriously, understanding how to use them, in what capacity, and most importantly with whom they are used is not the first thing that comes to mind when watching a new DIY body butter video.
Just because they are all natural does not mean that they are for everyone. For instance, I have an allergy to Pine. I wouldn’t use a neat, nor a blend with pine as one of the ingredients unless I’m looking to start a trend in patchy, irritated skin. Same with children, some oil concentrates are too much for them and can cause irritation, inflammation, breathing problems and in extreme cases, death if swallowed or used in blends where the dilution ratio is higher than recommended for children.
Some of those oils are:
- Wintergreen- used as a pain reliever for its warming properties.
- Tea Tree- used for its many anti fungal properties.
- Eucalyptus- used for respiratory aid.
- Camphor can be used as to aid in skin preparations
A full list of oils that can be harmful can be found at Poison.org
Understanding the best oil to use for your child and the dilution ratios are incredibly important. Consuming large quantities of oils can have negative, harmful results as they are highly concentrated oils from plants. Often times, trace amounts are used in products such as vapor rub…key word trace amounts!
Remember less is more here and consult with a licensed aromatherapist to go over safe options for you, your family, and your pets too.
E.O.s Are they safe for Pets?
According to ASPCA don’t throw out your diffuser just yet! Children and pets are our trigger words for rustling up our inner protectors. Not understanding how to enjoy the benefits E.Os while keeping our children and furry children safe, will have most people turning their noses to using them.
It doesn’t have too!
Our pets have keener senses than you or I. Six drops of a particular oil such as Tea Tree may have the desired effect in our diffuser for our home. But, if your pet is in that same room the effect on them could be fatal. Again, dosages matter very much when using E.Os. The safest practice for oil use with pets is to store them in a safe place out of reach, use in moderation in a secure location away from pets, and avoid these oils around pets:
- Citrus (d-limonene)
- Sweet birch
- Tea tree (melaleuca)
- Ylang ylang
- Sweet birch
- Citrus (d-limonene)
- Ylang ylang
- Tea tree (melaleuca)
Whether personal use, use with children or use with pets in the home, following safety practices with oils just as you would with any other product in your home is paramount. Here’s a quick guideline:
- Check for expiration. YES EOs have a shelf life
- check for purity and testing
- Read safety info on labeling and FOLLOW the guidelines
- Never use directly or “neat” without consulting and aromatherapist
- Never consume without consulting an aromatherapist
- Wash hands after application
- Store properly and in a safe place away from children and pets
- Contact poison control or physician immediately if you, your child or pet was exposed to high levels of an oil harmful to them.
- Look for the signs and use common sense. Stop using if you develop a rash. Look for signs of dizziness, lethargy, or difficulties breathing in children in pets.
- Diffuse in well ventilated areas for 30- 60 minutes at a time.
So, what are the Dilution Ratios?
When using any essential oil topically, you should always dilute it by combining it with a carrier oil of choice. This is powerful stuff, guys! I cannot stress it enough, less is more!
A few of my favorite carrier oils are fractionated coconut oil, almond oil, and grapeseed oil. You could also use avocado, jojoba, or even olive oil if you don’t have any of these on hand. (I usually avoid olive oil because it reminds me of cooking)
For dilution, you want to follow the 1, 2, 3 rule. Check out the charts below for what ratios you should use and with whom.
That converts to…
If you are preparing larger batches 1%= 6 drops to 1 oz. of carrier oil. The same rules apply by doubling and tripling per ounces.
Methods of Application/ Use
Now that we know what ratios we should use when applying topically, let’s discuss other methods of application.
Direct- Directly inhaling undiluted E.O. from the bottle or aromatherapy inhaler
Indirect- Diffused E.O.s, diluted or undiluted, into in area or diffuser jewelry. (Caution: oils can come into contact with skin diffusing with jewelry)
Neat- applied directly to skin undiluted. This is not recommended unless consulted with a licensed aromatherapist.
Diluted- applied in a blend usually with another carrier oil.
Ingestion– This method is the most controversial of them all. Everyone feels pretty safe applying the oils or even inhaling them. But not everyone is on the same page with ingesting them.
The International Federation of Aromatherapist do not recommended consumption unless under direct supervision of a doctor qualified in clinical aromatherapy.
That being said, ingestion, is as it sounds. The act of adding oils to your daily diet by either directly consuming the oils or by adding them to teas, beverages and food. Now, the controversy is that essential oils are not tested for human consumption and per the FDA cannot be labeled for a multi purpose or in aiding in any diagnoses or treatment of disease.
In short, although it may be widely considered safe, the FDA will only approve the labeling for one purpose. Aromatherapy/ cosmetic use or as a dietary supplement, thus being classified as a drug. The most recognized Essential Oil companies now offer the same oils labeled differently to comply with FDA regulations.
I highly recommend consulting with an aromatherapist before consuming essential oils. Again, just because they are all natural, it doesn’t not mean they are right for everyone, in every case.
Storage and Shelf Life
Yes, essential oils have a shelf life or expiration. Therefore, storing your oils properly ensures you get the full benefits out of each bottle. Citrus oils, for instance, have the shortest shelf life of 1- 2 years. Most others can last several years longer.
- Store in aluminum or amber glass bottles ( most common)
- Store at room temperature. Heat can cause oils to expire faster
- Inspect for changes in color, smell, consistency or oxidation.
Although expired oils are not specifically harmful, they can be less effective in their uses.
Top 10 Essential Oils
Try any of these top 10 essential oils if you are unsure where to start. My favorites are Lavender, Tea Tree, and Marjoram. I use them in everything from wool dryer balls to home cleaning products and diffusing.
There is a lot of information out there for essential oils. Hopefully, I was able to condense some of this info and present it in a way that everyone can understand. Essential oil use has been around for eons and has gained steam since the 90s for homeopathic remedies as the world starts to turn back to where we came from. We are all on a journey in life and essential oils have become a necessity in my holistic health journey. I hope you can implement them in yours as well!
I hope you enjoyed learning with me! Thank you for following along on Part One & Two of E.O. 101!!
Check out my favorite Essential oils, Simply Earth, in the Boutique now!
Check out DIY All Purpose Cleaner for a fun quick way to use natural products in your home!
What are your favorite essential oils and uses? Comment below 👇
Stay wild my friends!✌️❤️🌎🌱
Please note: Products mentioned in this article have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products and information on this page are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This website is not a substitute for professional care. Always consult your medical doctor regarding your medical care. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.