By Katrina Scampini, Certified Aromatherapist
Essential oils seem to be popping up everywhere. Grocery stores, online advertisements, flea markets, your best friend’s purse – literally everywhere!
Those tiny, dark (hopefully!) glass bottles proclaiming a list of benefits that seems endless. You know what I’m talking about — essential oils. There is no denying the mark they’re making on our culture right now, but if you haven’t been paying attention, it may seem like it’s too late to catch up.
Don’t be discouraged! Learning something new takes a lot of initiative.
If you even have a tiny seed of curiosity, let’s give it some fresh dirt, plenty of sun and water to sprout. Who knows – that seed could grow into a lifelong passion for aromatherapy!
We’ve all had to start somewhere. Even if you’ve never held an essential oil bottle, but your interest is sparked, this article is a perfect place to begin. Here, we will go over the very basics for using essential oils and start your journey off on the right foot!
First things first: What are essential oils?
When I was a little girl, I loved playing in my mom’s herb garden. I remember peppermint, basil, thyme, dill — all the basics. Unbeknownst to my mom, I would pull off those pretty leaves, crush them in my hands, and take a big whiff of that amazing aroma they left behind. Little did I know that I was taking my very first step into the wide world of aromatherapy!
When you take a certain plant, like peppermint for instance, and crush its leaf, that distinctive scent is going to burst through. That’s because inside that leaf are special cells and glands that hold the essential oil; when you crushed the leaf, you released the oil! Does every plant have their own essential oil? No. But thousands do and hundreds of them can be processed commercially . Many of them you’ve probably heard of and many of them that you haven’t. The oil doesn’t always come from the leaves either; it may come from the delicate flowers, thin roots, fresh rind, wood, or resin of a plant.
So at its most basic sense, an essential oil is the aromatic substances present in certain plants. We thankfully live in a time where it can be processed, bottled, and purchased pretty easily. Of course, that doesn’t mean we should take it for granted! Mother Nature takes on a bulk of this responsibility, producing enough material for us to extract from. For just a single drop of Rose oil, it takes approximately 50 rose flowers!  Essential oils are precious and should be used thoughtfully.
Now let’s talk about what you actually do with essential oils.
Ideally, essential oils can be incorporated into your life every single day! With some education, practice, and a lot of desire to learn, using essential oils will start to become second nature.
One of the best ways to begin is to use them in an aromatherapy diffuser. Find an essential oil with an aroma you enjoy, fill your diffuser up with water, add the recommended amount of oil, and turn it on! The aroma will be instant. If you’re interested in learning more about diffusers and how to use them, check out these blogs: Diffusers: Style vs. Functionality and How To Clean A Diffuser. Make sure to follow the directions given on your specific diffuser.
Why would you want to diffuse them? Aside from just making your room smell nice, essential oils offer a plethora of health benefits. They may help to clean the air, energize or relax you, uplift your mood, and so much more! The benefits depend on the essential oil.
Personal aromatherapy inhalers are also a nice way to use essential oils.
These are little devices that are super convenient to carry around. Inhalers will include a wick to absorb the essential oil, and the wick will be safely enclosed so that you can sniff away whenever you want! Check out How To Use Your Personal Aromatherapy Inhaler for more information on this great way to use your oils.
Essential oils are also wonderful for body care.
From lotions that make your skin soft to chest rubs that help open up your airways, the possibilities here seem like they are endless. Plus, when you start using essential oils topically, it also opens up the door to carrier oils! What are carrier oils you ask? Well, we won’t dive deep into it here, but check out Carrier Oils: Everything You’ve Ever Wanted To Know and Carrier Oils – The Other Part Of The Equation to learn more.
Trust me, carrier oils are so amazing that you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them! You must dilute all essential oils before putting them on your skin for safety reasons – using essential oil directly from the bottle to your skin can cause serious damage and it is nothing to mess around with. Properly diluting involves some measurements and mathematics, but don’t let that deter you! We have it all broken down here: How To Dilute Essential Oils: A Comprehensive Guide.
Finally, quality matters.
You need to be sure the essential oils you are using are really what you think you are using. That may seem obvious, but with the essential oil interest exploding, so is the market for them. How can you be sure the substance in that little glass bottle is what you think it is? Frankly, you need to purchase oils from a reputable company that can prove, on the spot, precisely where their essential oils are coming from and what the exact chemical constituents are that make it up.
You have options.
A lot of options. An overwhelming amount of options if we’re being honest. So why choose Plant Therapy? Let’s take a quick look at who Plant Therapy is:
Sells only the highest quality essential oils available? Check. Detailed third-party reports on each batch of essential oil? Check. Unbeatable customer service? Check. Certified aromatherapists on staff ready to answer all of your questions? Check. Dedicated to providing customers with the most current safety information available? Check. Free shipping and returns just to make sure you are completely satisfied with your purchase? Check. Really, this list could go on and on. Just give us a chance to prove our quality and service to you – we want you to be part of our family!
Keep your learning journey by checking out these informational blogs!
- Essential Oils 101
- Essential Oil Extraction 101
- Inhale! The Underused Power Of Smell
- The Wonderful Wide World of Aromatherapy
- Chemical Families
We want you to learn and we want to help empower you in using your essential oils. Please contact one of our aromatherapists if you have any questions or concerns. You can do so by emailing us at [email protected] or join our Facebook page Safe Essential Oil Recipes.
- Tisserand Institute. Retrieved from https://roberttisserand.com/essential-oils/
- Aromahead Institute. Retrieved from https://www.aromahead.com/online-course/introduction-to-essential-oils/reference/general-reference/what-are-essential-oils