An essential oil is actually a pure liquid that contains the true essence of a plant. These oils have been used for centuries and have many uses ranging from household cleaning products, aromatherapy, personal care products and as natural remedies for all kinds of ailments.
There are many health benefits to using products that come from nature and are processed without using harsh chemicals. They can be diffused, inhaled, applied topically, incorporated into massage, or taken internally.
The oils are distilled by using water or steam and become intensely concentrated. They are usually blended into a carrier oil such as sweet almond or apricot kernel oil in order to dilute them and allow for better absorption through the skin.
Essential oils can also influence your emotional state to one of peace, balance, joy and spiritual awareness.
If you are more down to earth, essential oils can cleanse your skin, body and home.
At one time or another you have probably used some essential oils in your home or for a natural remedy. One of the most common is lavender.
Lavender is a lovely way to ease aching muscles in a warm bath with epsom salts. You can also simply rub a few drops into tight muscles or your temples for headache relief.
I use lavender in a coconut oil based cream to rub into my feet before bed. Incredibly, this helps with insomnia. A few drops on the pillow is another way to use lavender.
Lavender is gently enough to use undiluted, yet it also has anti-microbial properties that make it helpful in cleaning products and personal care products.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is another essential oil that is commonly used in homes. This is a strong anti-microbial and may be used for cleaning products (gives them a great scent) and also personal care products. It has been recommended for use with acne, boils and other infections.
This oil should be diluted as it is very powerful. I’ve used a few drops of tea tree oil in warm water to inhale and clear sinuses. Warm compresses soaked in tea tree oil in water can be used on any bruise or sprain.
Peppermint is also very common and typically used for digestion. It may also be used for nausea, sore muscles, chest congestion, sore throat and headaches.
You may have had peppermint tea which is great for stomach upset. It may also be used for pain relief, inflammation, headaches, relieve PMS and to reduce fatigue.
Clove oil is commonly used for dental issues such as tooth pain or gum inflammation. I have used a combination that includes clove oil for my gums and it has reduced a pocket!
Moms may rub a diluted clove oil on the gums of teething babies. Clove has antiseptic, antifungal and antibacterial properties and diluted versions help in the treatment of bites, scrapes and cuts.
Proper Use of Essential Oils
In order to properly use essential oils you really need to inform yourself as much as you can. You can read books, go online, or join into a company that sells the oils and also offers training in its use.
You can start small and get more oils as you use them.
Essential Oils are a Good Substitute for Perfume
If you like the idea of having a scent for your personal care products you might want to consider making your own with essential oils.
Essential oils are generally safe, as they are made from plants. Try to get organic essential oils when you can.
Note: If you are chemically sensitive, even some of the essential oils can be irritating. I went to the local health food store where they have samples to smell to figure out which essential oils were irritating to me before I purchased any.
Resources for DIY Home and Personal Care Products:
Are you sensitive to cleaning products and perfumes? How do you handle it? Leave a comment and let me know!