Essential oils have been enhancing lives for thousands of years, offering a variety of benefits. An essential oil is a concentrated liquid containing volatile aroma compounds from plants. It can be harmful if essential oil used directly on the skin, so they must be diluted with a carrier oil prior to topical application. These oils can also be used for emotional and physical wellness. Either use essential oil alone or as complex essential oil blends depending on user experience and desired benefits.
Essential oils for every skin type:
Normal skin usually feels even and balanced. It’s not dry or oily or sensitive, the skin is completely neutral in its properties. Essential oil suitable for normal skin are Lavender, Geranium, Rosemary, Rosewood, Evening Primrose, Sweet Orange and Cedarwood.
Dry skin will feel tight and dry. It can be flaky and crack, especially in the winter months. Essential Oils ideal for dry skin are Lavender, Sandalwood, Geranium, Cedarwood, Rosewood, Ylang Ylang, Peppermint, Evening Primrose and Frankincense.
Oily skin feels greasy and shiny all over the face. If you feel like you are constantly reaching for the oil blotting sheets, then you probably have oily skin. Essential oils appropriate for oily skin are Cypress, Cedarwood, Lavender, Bergamot, Rosemary, Lemon, Sweet Orange, Juniper, Frankincense and Clary Sage.
Aged skin has loss of collagen, wrinkles and fine lines. Essential oils which is suitable for Mature Skin are Frankincense, Ylang Ylang, Sandalwood, Lemon, Rosewood, Peppermint, Fennel, Lavender, Geranium, Cypress and Evening Primrose.
Ways to use essential oils
Some of the most common ways to use essential oils:
1. Beauty use
Many organic and natural cosmetics use essential oils in their blends. These oils which are responsible for the fragrances of these organic and natural cosmetic products and enhance the therapeutic properties of their ingredients.
The purpose of diffusion is to disperse the oil molecules into the air. Diffusion also helps add scent to any room, kill germs, cure some illnesses. It can help you relax and deal with insomnia too.
3. Aromatic massage
An aromatic massage increases the supply of oxygen and nutrients to cells. Aromatic massage is beneficial for pain relief, control of blood pressure too. It also aids in digestive problems, removal of toxins, improvement in skin texture, stress and anxiety control.
Also check: Complete Guide to Aromatherapy
Facial steam bath or dry inhalation us useful for inhalation. Steam inhalation is needed for 10 to 20 minutes for effective results.
5. Foot soak
Add few drops of an essential oil to warm water, and then use it as a foot soak. Foot baths helps insomnia, headaches, colds and relaxes mind.
Essential oils are quite safe and highly beneficial when used properly. However, because their uses are still relatively unknown, people can hurt themselves by using these highly concentrated substances improperly.
1. Do not use essential oils internally:
There are two exceptions to this rule.
- Properly prescribed dosage of essential oil prescribed by a physician.
- Ingestion of bio-compatible levels of essential oil when taken as part of the diet.
2. Do not apply directly to skin
Essential oils are very concentrated. Dilute essential oils before applying to the skin, either in a carrier oil or base oil or in water.
There are two exceptions to the rule.
- Firstly, the use of oils as perfumes. The floral essences can be distilled in sandalwood oil, the sandal wood acts as a carrier oil to reduce and dilutes the effects of pure essential oil.
- The use of oils that is proved to be safe.
3. Do patch test
Always do a patch test before using it. Sometimes the oil reacts with skin. Skin reactions are dependent on the type of oil, the concentration of the oil, and the condition of the skin. Common skin reactions to essential oils can take three forms:
- Irritation: A small number of oils are strong or severe irritants. These oils should be used cautiously avoided in cases of skin sensitivity.
- Sensitization: Skin sensitization means an allergic skin reaction and manifests as a rash.
- Photo toxicity: Some essential oils can strongly increase sensitivity to sunlight when applied to the skin. The most common oils which cause photo toxicity are the citrus oils. Bergamot oil is the most reactive.
The best treatment for skin irritation from essential oils is to apply a carrier oil, such as coconut, which will dilute the impact of the essential oils.
4. Store in a ventilated dark place
Old and oxidized oils are more prone to cause reactions. Store it in fatty carrier oils to prevent rancidity. Most of the oils generally have a shelf life of one to three years. Some improve with age, such as sandalwood oil and patchouli oil. The citrus oils are most prone to degradation and should be used within one year. Keep out of reach from children
5. Avoid from sensitive areas
Avoid contact with eyes and mucous membranes. If an essential oil gets into the eye, do not rub it. Saturate a cotton ball with milk or a vegetable oil and wipe over the area affected. In severe instances, flood the eye area with lukewarm water for a few minutes.
Do not use essential oils on infants, children, pregnant women, the elderly, or people with serious health problems.