Archive for the ‘Essential Oil’ Category

What is an Essential Oil?

Saturday, August 16th, 2014

An essential oil is not the same as the traditional oil you may be familiar with. An essential oil is a concentrated essence of plant material and can be extremely useful for medicinal purposes. Read on to discover exactly what an essential oil is and how it can be used for your benefit.

An Essential Oil is Not an Oil at All

An essential oil is a volatile substance that occurs naturally in plants. Essential oils are not greasy or heavy. In fact, they are very light and evaporate easily. This is not characteristic of traditional oils. An essential oil is the distilled product of aromatic plants. These oils are what give plants such their distinctive scents.

The Difference between Fragrance Oil and Essential Oil

Fragrance oil is often mistaken for essential oil but this is far from the truth. If you are working with essential oil, it is imperative that you don’t confuse the two. Synthetic oil created in a laboratory to smell like a plant or flower is not the same as essential oil. If you wanted to use essential oil medicinally or in bath or beauty products, you cannot substitute fragrance oils with success.

Fragrance oils are best used in candle making, incense, etc. Any time you will be applying the oil to your body in any way, essential oil is a must. Make sure you pay attention to the oil you are purchasing. Does it specify that it is 100% true essential oil? If not, you might want to look elsewhere.

True Essential Oil

True essential oil, produced from real plant material, is from fifty to one hundred times more potent than the plants they are made from. I have worked extensively with essential oil for years and I can instantly tell the difference between synthetic oil and essential oil. True essential oil has an earthy quality that synthetic oils lack. If you examine the scent of a true essential oil next to a fragrance or essence oil, you’ll see (and smell) the difference for yourself.

A good way to tell if you have a high quality true essential oil is to put a drop or two on your finger. Then, rub your finger and thumb together quickly. A true essential oil will make a squeaky sound and will evaporate very quickly. If the oil feels greasy or sticky, you probably aren’t working with a true essential oil. Practice makes perfect when it comes to recognizing essential oil knock-offs. The more you work with them, the easier it will become to spot the synthetics.

The Price of Essential Oil

Another way to tell if you have a true essential oil is to judge by price. Essential oil is sold in milliliter amounts and can vary in price. The more common essential oils such as lavender and orange, will sell for a price of fewer than ten dollars. But, essential oil of rose or yarrow can sell for more than $100 dollars per two milliliter bottle. If you find a bottle of oil claiming to be true rose essential oil, or rose absolute oil, and it’s selling for twenty dollars, you can be sure this isn’t a true essential oil.

The reason for the high price of some essential oil is because of the amount of plant material it takes to make these oils. Rose absolute oil, for example, takes over 50,000 rose petals to yield just one ounce of essential oil.

Another thing to keep in mind when it comes to the price of essential oil is that it’s used in such small proportion that the cost is often well worth it. A small bottle of essential can last a very long time, up to three years, if properly stored.

Proper Storage of Essential Oil

Essential oil will break down very quickly if not cared for properly. These oils need to be stored in dark, glass bottles and away from light. I keep all of my essential oils in a cabinet in the corner of the kitchen. You’ll also need to keep them away from heat. Don’t store them above the stove or fireplace.

When working with essential oil, make sure to keep the lid on as much as possible. You should remove the lid only long enough to extract what you need and then replace it promptly. Moisture is another enemy of essential oil. Don’t store them in a bathroom or other place prone to humidity.

Where to Find Essential Oil

Essential oil is virtually impossible to make at home as it requires extensive equipment. However, you can find essential oil at many mail-order retailers, online retailers and in natural health stores across the country. Sometimes you may be able to find essential oil at craft and hobby stores but beware the quality of these often too-cheap oils.

Make sure you are purchasing essential oil from a reputable supplier. Some of the best places to find essential oil, in my personal experience, include Lavender Lane and Mountain Rose Herbs. These companies are reliable and offer quality essential oils. If you are uncertain about the price of a certain essential oil, I would recommend researching one of these companies to see what they are selling them for and judge from there.

Practical Uses of Essential Oil

Essential oil has many uses, especially in holistic aromatherapy, alternative medicine and natural bath and beauty products. Lavender essential oil, for example, can be rubbed on the temples to help relieve a headache. You can use essential oil to make homemade natural soap, homemade shampoo, natural cleaning products, and more.

Put basil essential oil on a cotton ball and inhale the scent to stimulate the appetite. Inhale chamomile essential oil for anxiety and to help you relax or bring sleep.

Inhale coriander essential oil to promote the healing process when recovering from injury.

Place a few drops of cypress essential oil on dog bedding to repel fleas. This is also an easy way to make a natural flea collar. Take a regular dog collar made of an absorbent material (i.e. not leather) and put a few drops of cypress and/or citronella essential oil directly on the collar.

Eucalyptus essential oil is fabulous to use for cleaning tough dirt from floors. Add a few drops to hot water and soap for a concentrated cleaning solution.

Put a few drops of an essential oil that you fancy on pieces of scrap fabric and toss in the dryer for a homemade dryer sheet. Or place the fabric scraps in drawers and closets to keep clothes fresh and smelling great.

As you can see, essential oil has many uses. For further information on the healing benefits of essential oil, see the resources section for links.

Various Essential Oil Candles

Saturday, August 16th, 2014

If the world did not give us choices, then it surely would be a very sad world. People will not be thinking and they will not know how to make decisions. Can you just imagine a world where there is only one kind of clothing and everybody has to wear it? Can you imagine a world where there is only one color and you will never have a name for it because it is just what the color of everything is? Well, we should all be thankful that people have been more than creative so much so that there is a variation for each item that there is in the planet.

And so in the world of candles, you will find that there are various types. For example, there are pillar candles, natural candles, organic candles, spa candles, paraffin candles, votive candles, tealight candles, and even essential oil candles. But did you know that for each of these, you will find another set of variations? Oh yes. The choices just never seem to end.

What makes all essential oil candles the same is the fact that they have been designed to be added with 100% natural essential oils. When these are lit, the candle will then send off the aroma that the oils have and what you have is a scented candle. Of course, not all scented candles are essential oil candles. There are some which have just been added with fragrances which have been concocted in a laboratory.

Take the time to go through stores that sell essential oil candles and you will notice that there is quite a huge number of such. There are organic votives and there are also organic jar candles. And these are filled with the mixture of natural wax mixed with essential oils. There are the simple pillars and the common votives. There are also trip lights and deco jars. You will also find them in various shapes like circles and hexagons and stars and squares.

Just like any other candle in the market, essential oil candles can be molded in different shapes because of the property of the wax which is fluid when it is in liquid form. So it can be made to look different and unique if one chooses to. Of course, when the wax sets, it then becomes hard and solid. Such are organic candles and they can found in shops that also sell natural candles.

Using Aroma Therapy to Treat Spasticity

Saturday, August 16th, 2014

Spasticity can be caused by damage that has occurred to the part of the brain that controls movement of the body or by damage that has occurred to the nerves that go from the brain to the spinal cord. Spasticity its self is the stiffness orrigidness in muscles. It can be identified by the unusual tightness or increased muscle tone in the muscles. It is a serious condition and it can effect walking as well as other everyday normal activities such as speech.

Some other causes of spasticity include a stroke, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, phenylketonuria, spinal cord injury or head injury. Exercise and muscle stretching can help ease some of the symptoms but if you have any symptoms which could indicate that you have spasticity you should see a medical doctor or if you have been diagnosed with it and it gets worse then you should see your doctor.

I am a certified natural health consultant and I have study and worked with essential oils for over 20 years. Below are some of my own essential oil formulas that I personally created and have worked with over the years. Choose one and mix the oils together very well then use as a massage oil two or three times a day.

Spasticity Formulas

Spasticity Oil #1

Ingredients:

4 drops Cypress Essential Oil
10 drops Ginger Essential Oil
16 drops Lemon Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Spasticity Oil #2

Ingredients:

10 drops Benzoin Essential Oil
15 drops Lemon Essential Oil
5 drops Sandalwood Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Spasticity Oil #3

Ingredients:

5 drops Ginger Essential Oil
3 drops Juniper Essential Oil
10 drops Lavender Essential Oil
12 drops Rosemary Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Spasticity Oil #4

Ingredients:

10 drops Lavender Essential Oil
10 drops Lemon Essential Oil
10 drops Sandalwood Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Spasticity Oil #5

5 drops Benzoin Essential Oil
5 drops Cypress Essential Oil
5 drops Ginger Essential Oil
5 drops Lavender Essential Oil
10 drops Rosemary Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Spasticity Oil #6

Ingredients:

15 drops Cypress Essential Oil
15 drops Ginger Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Spasticity Oil #7

Ingredients:

15 drops Juniper Essential Oil
15 drops Sandalwood Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

Spasticity Oil #8

Ingredients:

15 drops Benzoin Essential Oil
15 drops Sandalwood Essential Oil
2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

**Note: These are formulas that I have created and worked with over the years. Be sure to wear gloves when working with essential oils in their pure state and they should always be diluted with a carrier oil. Test a small path of skin with a tiny bit of the formula to make sure that you do not experience an allergic reaction before you use it on a large area of skin. I have over 25 years of experience working with herbs and essential oils for natural healing. I am also a certified natural health consultant but No liability can be taken by me!**

Uses of Peppermint Essential Oil

Saturday, August 16th, 2014

Peppermint essential oil (mentha piperita) is not to be confused with spearmint essential oil. The latter has a much lower menthol content and is made of course from the spearmint plant. Only the above the ground parts of the peppermint plant are used to extract peppermint essential oil. This has to be done just before flowering.

Peppermint essential oil has analgesic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, expectorant, decongestant, anti-inflammatory, anti-infectious, anti-fungal, digestive, and invigorating properties. The most widely known properties are generally its nausea-fighting abilities, which include vertigo and dizziness.

One of the most popular ways to use peppermint essential oil is to simply use it in an oil burner or vaporizer. It is a stimulating oil and helps concentration. Using peppermint essential oil in vapor therapy also helps with coughs, headaches, and nausea. The best way to use an oil burner is to add a few drops of peppermint essential oil to water, or a carrier oil like jojoba. For vaporizers, simply follow the manufacturer’s instructions included with the product.

Peppermint essential oil makes an excellent remedy for back pain, muscular pain, headaches, rheumatism, and other inflammatory conditions. A blended massage or bath oil works very well in these instances. To prepare, add 15 drops of peppermint essential oil to one ounce of carrier oil, such as jojoba. Even a simple salad oil, such as sunflower, will work. This makes enough oil for three baths. This blend can also be used to ease colic, cramps, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, catarrh and coughs.

Add peppermint essential oil to an unscented lotion base to treat sunburn, red and inflamed skin, and itchiness. This makes it a perfect lotion during the hot summer months. Unscented lotion base can be bought in health food stores or ordered on-line.

If you suffer from bad breath or gum infections, a rinse made with peppermint essential oil may be just the help you need. Add eleven drops of this oil to one tablespoon of brandy and rinse – please do not swallow!

Peppermint essential oil will also keep spiders and ants away. Simple use drops o the oil along the bottom of your door frames. If you prefer, you can make a spray by adding 50 drops of the oil to two ounces of vodka, shake really well and then add four ounces of distilled water and shake again. Also, shake the spray bottle before each use.

This oil can be bought in health food stores or purchased on-line. One good site is http://www.essentialoils.co.za/index.htm, which was used as a reference for some of the information contained above.

Not only is this spray good to deter the bugs, but it will make your house spell nice. You can also spray this in your car (keep away from polished surface, spraying the floorboards is a good idea) to keep motion sickness at bay.

Uses of Patchouli Essential Oil

Saturday, August 16th, 2014

Patchouli essential oil comes from a perennial, bushy plant (Pogostemon Cablin). The plant grows up to three feet high, has a hairy stem and large, furry leaves. The patchouli essential oil is made from dried, young leaves of the plant, which are fermented prior to steam distillation. This essential oil is also known as patchouly and puchaput.

Patchouli essential oil is yellow to dark brown in color, and thick in consistency. It actually gets better as it ages, which is unusual, as essential oils usually only maintain their healing properties for one to three years if properly stored. Patchouli is the quintessential hippie scent, and indeed is great for fighting depression and anxiety. However, it is also great for skin care. It can help break down cellulite, stimulate the regeneration of new skin cells, and speed up healing to minimize scarring.

* Burners and Vaporizers

Add a few drops of patchouli essential oil to water or any type of carrier oil (jojoba or any type of expressed oil you have on hand should do) and diffuse to fight anxiety and depression. Used in this manner, it also creates an amorous atmosphere and acts as an insect repellent.

* Blended Massage or Bath Oil

Add 10 – 15 drops of patchouli essential oil to one ounce of carrier oil (such as jojoba). This makes enough oil for three baths. Use this oil in your bath or as a massage aid if you need help with depression, skin or scalp complaints such as dermatitis or fungal infections.

* Skin Care

Add patchouli essential oil to a lotion or cream base to treat weeping sores, slow healing wounds and ulcers. It can also be used in this manner to treat athlete’s foot, acne and eczema. Skin that needs rejuvination can also benefit from this type of treatment. All in all, it fights infection and speeds up healing.

* Perfumery

While patchouli might be too strong of an essential oil for some, it blends well with essential oils of bergamot, clary sage, geranium, lavender, and myrrh. Pathcouli’s fragrance is a base note, which means it anchors other scents very well and its scent lingers and only evaporates after about four hours or even longer.

Patchouli essential oil can be bought in health food stores or purchased online. One good site is http://www.essentialoils.co.za/products.htm, which was used as a reference for some of the information contained above.