I’ve recently started incorporating essential oils not only into my beauty routine but have also been using them for different health problems for my family and me.
Before I started using any essential oils I did tons of research, since my husband is one of those skeptical people that don’t trust a lot of things when it comes to “natural cures.” Now, I’m not saying these essential oils are going to cure every ailment or help you have the most beautiful skin in the world, but there is science behind these oils and so many testimonies about how well they work from helping migraines to getting rid of acne.
There are many great resources on essential oils, so I’m not going to write some huge article on every essential oil and what it can be used for. (I will link to some great resources at the bottom where you can find all this information).
I thought I would just take a few interesting and important things to know about using essential oils if you plan on using them in your home.
1. Fragrance Oils Are Different Than Essential Oils
I know that this can get sort of confusing for someone who is new to essentials oils, but if you see fragrance oil or any type of “perfume” used on the packaging than it is not a true essential oil. The fragrance oils are most likely not natural but instead are synthetic oils or fragrances that are not the same as pure essential oils.
2. Most Essential Oils Need to be Diluted When Using on Your Body or Skin
When using an essential oil on your body, you should dilute it with a carrier oil (things like waxes, butter, alcohols, and other oils) so that it is not used at full strength. Just a small amount of the essential oil is very strong and it can easily irritate the skin if you don’t dilute it.
There are some essential oils that can be used without diluting them. An example would be lavender and tea tree oil, but again these should be used sparingly as they can still irritate the skin.
3. Test Your Sensitivity to an Essential Oil First
Before using an essential oil you should do a sensitivity test on your skin. Mix a small amount of the essential oil with a carrier oil and apply it to a small patch of your skin on your arm. Wait at least an hour or two and check the area for any redness, tingling, swelling or any other type or irritation.
4. Always Use Diluted Essential Oils with Children and Babies
This is especially true when you are applying it to their skin. A good idea is to actually cut the normal recipe in half for the essential oils when applying it on a baby or a child. They have much more sensitive skin and you don’t need to apply a lot since they won’t need it anyways. Here is a good article about essential oils for kids.
5. Consult Your Doctor Before Using Any Essential Oils When Pregnant
If you are pregnant, you definitely need to consult your doctor before using any essential oils on your skin or internally. It is recommended that you not use any essential oils in your first trimester and there are certain ones that are off limit while pregnant and nursing.
Here is a list of all the essential oils you should avoid using during pregnancy.
6. A Bottle of Essential Oil Could Last You Years
If you have ordered a bottle of essential oil your first thought may be how quickly you will go through it, but truthfully it can last you years. And since most essential oils are good for at least 5 years, you could potentially have that bottle for many, many years in your home. There are even some essential oils that will last up to 10 years.
You only need a very small amount for most uses from using on your body to even cleaning, it will surprise you just how long that bottle will last you.
7. Store Your Essential Oils Out of Direct Sunlight
Most will come in a dark glass bottle, which helps keep them potent for many years but you also need to store them out of direct sunlight as well.
8. Keep All Essential Oils Out of Reach of Children
This is just a safety precaution as you don’t want your child drinking the bottle of essential oils or even getting it all over their body. It can also burn your eyes if you get it in them so as a safety precaution keep them where a child can’t get into them.
9. If You Are Allergic To Something In Food, You Will Be Allergic When Used On Your Skin
If you can’t eat nutmeg without breaking out or swelling up, then don’t use that oil on your skin. Anything you put on your skin is absorbed into your body as well and will cause an allergic reaction as well.
10. Don’t Be Afraid to Do Your Research Before Using Any Essential Oil
When I started doing my research on essential oils I actually came across several conflicting articles in some essential oils. There were some articles that stated the oil was completely safe while others cautioned about its use. If you are ever unsure if you should use an essential oil, ere on the side of caution and don’t use it.
Essential oils can be wonderful and a great way to treat problems naturally but you just can’t go and do whatever you want with them. Take the time and do some research to ensure you and your family’s safety.
If you are looking to do more research on essential oils, there are several places you can look for more information.
I recommend you check out AromaWeb as it has just about any information you could want to look up for essential oils and aromatherapy.
There are also lots of different books that you can check out and I’m sure your local library has some you can get for free to learn how you can use essential oils in your life.
*Just a disclaimer, I am by no means a doctor or even an expert when it comes to essential oils. These are just important tips that I have learned when doing my own research on essential oils. Please contact your doctor with any questions or contact an aromatherapy educator for more information as well.