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Essential Oils Blog

All posts by Plant Therapy

The Plant Therapy Fragrance Wheel — Explained.

On our downloads page, there is definitely a treasure trove of good stuff! DIYs, informational booklets, charts…but what about that thing that looks like a color wheel from elementary school? It’s actually a Fragrance Wheel, which can be a very handy tool when you know why and how you would use it.

The Fragrance Wheel Families

plant therapy fragrance wheel

Some aromas that are easy to label — these are usually considered Fragrance Families. They may be herbal, spicy, floral, medicinal, fruity, woody, earthy, minty, green, or foodlike.

Black pepper is identified as a member of the Spice family, and Lime is considered Fruity. But what about Helichrysum Italicum? Or Manuka? Do you know? If not — never fear! That’s what we have a fragrance wheel for!

Helichrysum, for example, is sandwiched in between Copaiba and Ho Wood, so, using that information, you can safely make an educated guess about the aroma of Helichrysum — it’s woody! On the other hand, Manuka is next to Lemon Eucalyptus and Niaouli, which have very medicinal scents.

Within some of these families are subgroups, which help define the scent of an individual essential oil more clearly.

Making your own blends…

essential oil bottles with fresh pink and white flowersIf you’re an essential oil blender, the Fragrance Wheel is your friend. If you’re looking for a certain type of aroma, or want to substitute the fragrance of one oil for another similar one, a quick glance at the

Fragrance Wheel will help you out! Add this along with our constituent chart and essential oil substitution chart for a sure fire way to make the blend you’ve been dreaming about! It will also help you get a wonderfully rounded aroma.

Finding your new favorite essential oils…

single essential oils and essential oil blends around a diffuserAre you head-over-heels for that fresh, herbal aroma of Elemi and want to try another oil that has similar aromatic qualities? Just take a peek at the Fragrance Wheel and find another essential oil with a similar odor profile — it’s as easy as that!

You can also look at the Fragrance Wheel to help you understand your own personal favorite scent families. And if you like to arrange your collection of oils by their aroma, this is an excellent guide!

KidSafe Fragrance WheelHonestly, it can be very easy to lose yourself in the overwhelming amount of scents that exist. Instead of exploring new essential oils, we may just feel like sticking with the tried-and-true, rather than branching out. Hopefully becoming a little more familiar with the Fragrance Wheel boosts your confidence when choosing new oils for your collection!

Chamomile Essential Oils: Learn the Difference

which chamomile essential oil should you chooseThis time of the year, it’s no secret that most of us could use a little extra rest and relaxation. Holiday plans and family get-togethers can be very fun, but also very exhausting, taking a pretty significant toll on both our mental and physical health. Thankfully, we can turn to our very helpful friend, chamomile, to give us some extra support to help tackle this festive season!

But there’s more than one Chamomile!

Plant Therapy carries two different chamomile essential oils and one Chamomile CO2, which may come off as a bit confusing – understandably. Let’s take some time to clear up the differences so that you can make the most educated decision for yourself and your family.

which chamomile essential oil should you chooseChamomile Roman, Chamaemelum nobile, and Chamomile German, Matricaria chamomilla, are both aromatic herbs often used interchangeably. However, you’ll notice that both of these “chamomiles” have a different genus and species name; they also have markedly different chemical components and can be used for different purposes.

Chamomile Roman

chamomile roman ground growing flowers

The Chamaemelum nobile is a small evergreen perennial that grows low to the ground. The hairy stems and threadlike leaves support small, vibrant, daisy-like flowers and that often create a gorgeous ground cover. The essential oil has a pale, yellow color and a light, but intense, sweet apple-fruity aroma. This is widely considered the more gentle chamomile oil, making it ideal for use with young children.

It has long been favored to help calm the nervous system and provide support for feelings of irritability, anxiety, and stress [1, 2,3]. Chamomile Roman is also a fantastic choice to help improve the quality of sleep by easing physical and emotional tension in the body that can build up over time [4, 5]. This natural mood booster can also help reduce feelings associated with depression [6]. Perfect for the holidays, right?

Chamomile Roman is rich in esters, which gives this oil its antispasmodic qualities. This is ideal when you’re dealing with a tummy that feels tight and uncomfortable. It helps relax stomach muscles, which consequently can dispel gas and support the digestive processes [5,7]. This is also great for soothing menstrual cramps, body aches, and back pain associated with a woman’s menses [6].

This gentle giant of an oil can also provide soothing relief to irritated skin. It has been used as a natural remedy for dry skin, superficial wounds, and minor burns, bruises, and rashes [8]. For an amazing facial mask DIY using Chamomile Roman, check out THIS blog!

Chamomile German

chamomile german flowers

The Matricaria chamomilla is a self-seeding annual plant with long, branching, hairless stems that can grow up to 24 inches tall. The vibrant yellow and white flowers are steam distilled to produce a strong, herbaceous aroma similar to chamomile tea. The essential oil is a breathtakingly deep and distinct blue color, thanks to its chamazulene content. So be careful – this oil will leave a stain on fabric and carpet!

Chamomile German is rich in sesquiterpene derivatives. Particularly, the chemical components a-bisabolol and azulene are known to stimulate the liver and support the digestive system by easing intestinal cramping [9].

Inhaling Chamomile German has shown to reduce the perception of pain, ease tired muscles and aching joints, and can also assist with nasal allergies, minor cuts, and superficial wounds [10]. Additionally, it is emotionally and mentally calming, helping to settle frayed nerves and ease tension after a long day [5].

Check out THIS blog for a DIY cream using Chamomile German that will help give you a well-rested night of sleep! 

Chamomile German CO2

chamomile german co2 bottle top sticker

The CO2 Extract version of Chamomile German has a softer, more herbaceous aroma that is considered “truer” to the scent of the flower. A difference from steam distilled Chamomile German that you may notice immediately is the CO2’s lack of color. That’s because chamazulene, the component that gives Chamomile German that beautiful blue color, develops during the steam distillation process.

However, unlike the steam distilled version, the CO2 contains Matricine, a component that is the precursor to chamazulene. This is known to be very supportive, especially for dry or reddened skin. This is a fantastic choice for helping soothe skin inflammations, such as minor rashes, insect bites, and burns.

Keep in mind that this CO2 can be a little tricky to work with because it is very thick and viscous.  Just roll the bottle in your hand to create warmth and allow the CO2 to be a bit more workable. You only need a very small amount of it, too — just 0.1 – 0.2% for skin blends — because it is such a powerhouse.

Check out some great recipes for skin using Chamomile German CO2 HERE!

Sources:

[1] Study shows chamomile capsules ease anxiety symptoms. (2015).  National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Retrieved from https://nccih.nih.gov/research/results/spotlight/040310.htm

[2] Amsterdam, J. D., Shults, J., Soeller, I., Mao, J. J., Rockwell, K., & Newberg, A. B. (2012). Chamomile (Matricaria recutita) may provide antidepressant activity in anxious, depressed humans: an exploratory study. Alternative therapies in health and medicine, 18(5), 44-9.

[3] Guimarães, R., Barros L., Dueñas, M., Calhelha, R., Carvalho, A., Santos-Buelga, C., Queiroz, M., Ferreira, I. (2013). Nutrients, phytochemicals and bioactivity of wild Roman chamomile: a comparison between the herb and its preparations. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23122119

[4] Srivastava, J.K., Shankar, E., & Gupta, S. (2010). Chamomile: A herbal medicine of the past with a bright future (Review). Molecular Medicine Reports, 3, 895-901. 

[5] Butje, A. (2016). Should You Use Roman Chamomile or German Chamomile? Retrieved from https://blog.aromahead.com/2016/05/16/use-roman-chamomile-german-chamomile

[6] Amsterdam, J., Shults, J., Soeller, I., Mao J., Rockwell, K., Newberg, A. (2012). Chamomile (Matricaria recutita) may provide antidepressant activity in anxious, depressed humans: an exploratory study. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22894890

[7] Chamomile. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Retrieved from https://nccih.nih.gov/health/chamomile/ataglance.htm

[8] Srivastava, J. K., Shankar, E., & Gupta, S. (2010). Chamomile: A herbal medicine of the past with bright future. Molecular medicine reports, 3(6), 895-901. 

[9] Chamomile.(2018). Michigan Medicine University of Michigan. Healthnotes, Inc. Retrieved from https://www.uofmhealth.org/health-library/hn-2066005

[10] Ford-Martin, P. and Odle, T. G. 2005. Aromatherapy. In J.L. Longe, ed. Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine. Second Edition, Volume I (A–C). Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson Gale, p. 123.

Holiday Bathroom Odor Obliterator

bathroom odor eliminator DIY

With so many guests filling your home this holiday season, it’s important to make sure your *ahem* facilities are kept nice and clean. No one wants their friends or family members crinkling their nose up whenever they have to answer the call of nature. Try this spray to help keep your shared bathroom a bit more pleasant for everyone! Just spray it into the toilet, before or after, to help keep unpleasant odors at bay. For more bathroom DIYs, try this Reed Diffuser, Toilet Bomb, and All Purpose Cleaner!

Odor Obliterator

bathroom odor eliminator DIY

What you will need:
  • 4-ounce spray bottle
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable glycerin
  • 45-50 drops Christmas Tree Holiday Blend*
  • 3.5 ounces distilled water
  • 40 drops Optiphen Plus**
What you will do:
  1. Add vegetable glycerin, Optiphen Plus, and Christmas Tree to the spray bottle.
  2. Stir or swirl to combine.
  3. Add water to fill and shake prior to each use.
  4. Spray into toilet water prior to using the restroom. This creates a barrier on the water, as well as releases a pleasant scent into the room.

*Can substitute any Holiday Blend.

** Due to the water content, this product should be stored in the fridge and used within a week. Otherwise, add a preservative, such as Optiphen Plus.

Scented Oven Mitt DIY + FREE Cinnamon Leaf Promotion!

scented hot pad DIY for the holidays

Thanksgiving is going to be here before we know it! And Plant Therapy wants to join your family at the table! Don’t worry — we don’t plan on literally crowding your table, but we can be there in spirit with this new oven mitt. Just in time for planning your big meal, when you spend $35 from November 8 through November 11, you’ll get a cute Plant Therapy oven mitt for free with coupon code OVEN18. We’ll also throw in a 10 mL bottle of Cinnamon Leaf, one of the season’s most quintessential aromas!

Oven mitt and cinnamon leaf just in time for the holidays

The oven mitt also makes a perfect hot pad, especially if you give this really easy Scented Hot Pad DIY a try:

Scented Hot Pad

What you’ll need:

What you’ll do:

Place 4-6 drops of Cinnamon Leaf on the felt or cotton pad. Insert into the pocket of the oven mitt and place under your hot pans or casserole dishes.

scented hot pad DIY for the holidays

Please keep in mind that Cinnamon Leaf can be an irritant on the skin, so make sure you don’t put your hand back in the mitt with the Cinnamon Leaf still inside and without washing first!

And for more awesome Holiday-themed DIY ideas, check out our blog’s DIY page!

Diffusing at Parties: Is It Safe to Diffuse in Public?

We love essential oils, you love essential oils, everybody else should love essential oils (I mean, right?)….but sometimes it can be easy to get carried away. With all of the holiday gatherings coming up, we here at Plant Therapy want to send out a friendly safe-usage reminder: Don’t diffuse in public!

When you diffuse in public, unpredictable reactions may occur. Why is this? Well, everyone has to breathe. And just because you respond well to an essential oil diffused into the air, doesn’t mean everyone else will, too. Babies, pregnant or nursing women, pets, and individuals on certain medications or who have medical conditions can be at risk of adverse reactions to what’s being publicly diffused.

Some people have specific allergies to certain chemical components in essential oils as well! Inhaling specific oils can make them feel nauseous, light-headed, irritable – honestly, the list of symptoms could go on and on.

You just don’t know how everyone will respond, so why take the risk? It’s always best to err on the side of caution so that you don’t unintentionally harm your party guests.

But don’t worry!

We know you still want to use your oils, especially with the overwhelming demands this season can bring. Personal aromatherapy inhalers are ideal for public situations, especially since you can use whatever oil or blend is personally best for you. Aromatherapy diffuser lockets are also a nice option to enjoy your favorite oils whenever you want!

Thank you to all of our amazing customers making safe and conscientious essential oil choices!

Oil of the Month favorites are HERE!

oil of the month essential oils magnolia flower, sea fennel, and moldavian dragonhead

You said you loved them so we’re bringing them back! Some of your favorite Oil of the Month essential oils are now available for purchase.

Sea Fennelsea fennel essential oil

Straight from the beautiful coastline of Greece comes Sea Fennel, an essential oil with a history dating back to ancient mythology. It has wonderful skin renewing and regenerative properties, making it wonderful for aging skin to help improve tone and radiance. This KidSafe oil also helps with digestive and respiratory issues.

Check out THIS blog to learn more about Sea Fennel!

Magnolia Flower

magnolia flower

The uniquely sweet, fruity, and exotic aroma of Magnolia Flower can help ease worry and tension in both the mind and the body. Coming from the Michelia Alba tree in China, this essential oil is rich in the constituent Linalool, which is well known for its soothing and calming capabilities. Its lightly floral aroma blends beautifully with many other essential oils and is an excellent addition to any essential oil collection.

Check out THIS blog to learn more about Magnolia Flower!

Moldavian Dragonhead

Moldavian dragonhead essential oil has an aroma like vintage lemon drops

This rare and precious essential oil brings a host of benefits and a beautifully soft, spicy lemony scent, reminiscent of vintage, natural lemon drops. Reach for it to help reduce digestive upset, support the immune system, and fight against seasonal threats. Plus, it’s great to help calm the mind and uplift the mood.

Check out THIS blog to learn more about Moldavian Dragonhead!

So what is the Oil of the Month Club, anyway?

If you have a bit of an adventurous side when it comes to essential oils, you’re going to love what Plant Therapy has to offer every single month. Rare essential oils, unique blends, absolutes, essence oils, and CO2s – anything could be waiting in your mailbox!

Check the club out HERE to become a member.

Essentials Video: Exotic Escape Bath Salts DIY

Sometimes when the weather is a little chilly outside, nothing beats a warm, cozy bath. The unique blend of essential oils used in this Bath Salts DIY is perfect for the autumn season with it’s warm, spicy, and light citrus scent!

Exotic Escapes Bath Salts

What you’ll need:
2 tbsp Body Wash, unscented
1/2 cup Epsom Salt
2 drops Ginger Root CO2
2 drops Cardamom
1 drop Orange Sweet

Add all these products to your cart

What you’ll do:
Mix your body wash and essential oils in a small bowl, and stir. Once the oils and body wash are combined, mix in your Epsom salts. Add to your bath for an exotic scented treat!

Essentials Video: Exotic Escape Bath Salts DIY

If you love this recipe, be sure to check out tons of other great videos, tutorials, and DIYs on our Video page!

Helichrysum Italicum: Spotlight Essential Oil of the Week

Helichrysum Italicum spotlight oil of the week

Helichrysum Italicum

  • Latin name: Helichrysum italicum
  • Aroma Description: Sweet, warm, herbal woody aroma

Therapeutic benefits

  • Ideal For All Types of Skin Blemishes
  • Boosts Normal Immune Function
  • Soothes Away Deep Emotional Feelings
  • Reduces the Appearance of Scars and Wrinkles

Kidsafe?

Yes! This IS a KidSafe oil.

Dilution instructions:

For topical application, we recommend a dilution of 3-5%.

Diffusion instructions:

Use in your aromatherapy diffuser, personal inhaler, or diffuser necklace to help soothe away deep emotional feelings and diffuse anger and destructive feelings leaving you uplifted and ready to move forward.

Where Helichrysum Italicum is used on the body:

This amazing oil is extremely useful in skin rejuvenation, as it counteracts the visible signs of aging, reducing the appearance of wrinkles and helping smooth skin. Add it to your favorite body cream or lotion for more radiant skin.

Oils to blend with:

Bergamot, Black Pepper, Chamomile Roman, Clary Sage, Geranium Egyptian, Lavender, Lemon, Neroli, Palmarosa, Rose Absolute, and Rosemary 1,8-Cineole.

Sun Soother Blend

To help comfort your skin after too much sun exposure, add 3 drops of Helichrysum Italicum, 9 drops of Lavender, and 6 drops of Frankincense Frereana to 1 ounce of Aloe Vera Jelly. Apply to the impacted area for relief! This blend is KidSafe.

On the Mend Roller Blend

What you’ll need:

Add all these products to your cart

What you’ll do:

Add essential oils to empty 10 mL roll-on bottle and fill the rest with carrier oil. Apply directly to the impacted area twice daily.

on the mend roller blend with helichrysum italicum

Hand Sanitizer for Trick or Treating!

halloween trick or treat bag candy

Halloween parties are about to go full-swing! Office parties, classroom celebrations, parades, and door to door trick-or-treating are right around the corner. With so much going on, it’s important to keep yourself and your kids protected against the real Halloween monster – germs! This easy, all-natural hand sanitizer will help keep those hands clean and conditioned while you’re on-the-go this week.

And don’t forget to take advantage of our Trick or Treat Bag deal! Spend $25 and get this Halloween bag (with reflective tape for safety and coloring crayons for fun!) — today is the last day to get yours free!

Hand Sanitizer DIY 

What you’ll need:

Add all these products to your cart

What you’ll do:

  1. Pour Aloe Vera Jelly into a flip top bottle.
  2. Add 18 drops Germ Fighter OR KidSafe Germ Destroyer
  3. Shake well to mix oils.
  4. Use a dime size squirt of the gel as needed on your hands and rub in.

hand sanitizer DIY for halloween, using germ destroyer germ fighter

This is such an easy way to make your own hand sanitizer, without all of the drying properties of alcohol. And, because this recipe calls for our Aloe Vera Jelly, there isn’t even a need to add a preservative. It doesn’t get much easier than this!

Essentials Videos: Festive Fall Candle

Fall is such a wonderful time of the year to make your home feel cozy and your friends and family feel appreciated! With this Festive Fall Candle DIY, you could do both! With just a little bit of time and some basic craft supplies, you’ll love making this great smelling candle!

Use any one of our Fall Blends to give this candle an aroma that’s perfect for the season. They are great to spruce up your fall decor or to make as gifts for the people you love! To create a candle using a KidSafe Fall Blend, make sure to use Harvest Moon

Festive Fall Candle

What you’ll need:

  • Pint-size jar
  • Leaf cutout
  • Craft paint
  • Sponge brush
  • 8 ounces of Beeswax Pearls
  • 30-35 drops of your favorite Fall Blend
  • 10-inch wax wick
  • Accent ribbon

Add all these products to your cart

What you’ll do:

  1. Secure the cutout to the jar.
  2. Using a sponge brush, paint all exposed area.
  3. Allow to set until completely dry.
  4. Remove the cutout.
  5. Melt beeswax over a double boiler.
  6. Remove from heat and add your chosen Fall Blend and stir.
  7. Carefully pour into the jar.
  8. Place the wick in the middle and wrap the excess around a pencil or dowel to keep the wick in place.
  9. Allow to set up completely.
  10. Trim wick to 1 inch.
  11. Tie a decorative piece of ribbon around the neck of the jar.

Festive fall candle DIY

And don’t forget, time is almost out to purchase our Fall Blends! Check out these DIYs using these amazing blends for some more great festive fall ideas:

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