HOW TO USE ESSENTIAL OILS

Have you ever felt that you wish that there was an alternative to using commercial air freshener, which always seems to smell the same? The problem when using a commercial air freshener is the fact that your entire house seem to smell like a bathroom – which is far from desirable.

Well, you can easily and cost-effectively freshen the air in any room, and choose from a variety of fragrances available. It is so easy to do, that you in afterthought would be puzzled why you have not done this before.

The core of these air-fresheners are essential oils. Although proper and pure essential oils can cost a couple of dollars, you need very little and the rewards are great. Not only will your room be fragranced by pure natural oils extracted from botanical material, but you will also benefit from the therapeutic effects intrinsic to the oils.

There are literally hundreds of oils to choose from, and we can offer you one of the best selections of oils available in the world, at truly affordable prices.

 

To use essential oils as an air freshener simply do the following 

  1. Take a clean plastic spray bottle (used for spraying plants) and half fill it with clean water. You may wish to use filtered or bottled water, to ensure that no contaminants are in the water.
  2. Add 8 – 10 drops of a refreshing and uplifting essential oil to the water and shake well.
  3. When you need to perk up a room, shake the bottle and give the room a couple of quick sprays, but make sure not to spray near polished furniture, as the essential oils can damage the polished surface.
  4. Store the bottle in a dark cool area.

 

Remove cigarette smoke spray

Mix and use a combination of 3 drops rosemary essential oil, 3 drops tea tree oil and 5 drops of eucalyptus in the water spray method explained above.

 

Remove cooking smell spray Air freshening with essential oils

Mix and use a combination of 3 drops peppermint essential oil, 3 drops lavender and 4 drops clary sage in the water spray method explained above.

We all need to have a daily cleansing to rid our bodies of all the accumulated pollution that surrounds us even in smaller towns, and to ensure that our sweet smelling bodies are acceptable in society. Yet, having a real bath is more than mere daily maintenance of the body – as that could easily be achieved in the shower. No, having a bath, and really bathing on a grand scale achieves far more than just cleaning – it helps kick-start your day to help you conquer all, or heals the fragile ego that got bashed about during the day, soothes the painfully stressed-out muscles from keeping at the front of the pack, or it can be a wonderful interlude to a quiet and intimate evening with your loved one – or simply to have a deep relaxed sleep. But then – the type of bath you are in need of, will determine the way, time and effort spent on getting it all together. Underneath some ideas on having a whale of a time in your water environment, and since we sell essential oils, some ideas on what oils to use for its fragrance and therapeutic properties.

For more information on dilution ratios for bathing, please  click here.

 

Kick-start your day:

When you get ready to conquer the world, you will not spend hours in the bath, but will have a brisk bath at about 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (21 to 27 degrees Celsius) while listening to cheery music or the early news (maybe not a good idea).

If you have some bright and sunny plants or fresh cut flowers (even a single bloom would do) around the bathroom at this time it will also add to your awakening. Since there is normally not that much time in the morning, your bathing experience would also not be that long.

When the bathwater has been drawn add a total of about 6 – 7 drops of any, or a mixture of the following oils:

 

Healing the fragile ego

Bathing sweet smelling essential oils start day relax de-stress relaxing bath. Here we would need to get you to relax a bit, and have some time to pamper yourself. The bathwater should be around 95 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit (35 to 38 degrees Celsius) and you could add some bubble bath to create the sensation of being touched when getting into the water. Instead of a harsh electric light, the softer light of a couple of candles will also make the world look a lot better.

If you could surround yourself with your favorite singer it will help greatly to cheer you up, but stay away from too sentimental or sad songs. Since you need to center yourself your bath may take about twenty minutes. A good idea is to also unplug the phone.

When the bathwater has been drawn add a total of about 6 – 7 drops of any, or a mixture of the following oils: (ensure that the oils are mixed in the water, and not floating on the bubbles, since this could irritate your skin)

 

Soothe the painful muscles

To help relax the muscles try and keep the bath a bit cooler than what you would normally do at about 98 – 99 degrees Fahrenheit (around 37 degrees Celsius) but when in the bath let hot water in to make it a bit warmer, and have a good long soak.

You need not have low lights, but to prevent you from needing to get out of the bath, just when your muscles are un-knotting themselves, maybe unplug the phone.

Some people may find reading in the bath relaxing at this time, but a slightly soggy book works on my nerves.

When the bathwater has been drawn add a total of about 6 – 7 drops of any, or a mixture of the following oils:

 

Interlude to an intimate evening 

Depending on the day you had – decide if a cooler bath will make you relax, or increase the temperature if you feel you need a warmer bath.

To get yourself in the mood, set the stage with only a candle or two for light and soft sensuous music. If your partner can join you in the bath, and the bath is big enough, it might be an idea to have a shared bath.

When the bathwater has been drawn add a total of about 6 – 7 drops of any, or a mixture of the following oils:

To make the bath even more romantic you could scatter a couple of rose petals on the water.

 

Getting ready for deep sleep

When you want to do nothing else than to simply have a good bath, and crawl into bed, it might be a good idea to have a quick shower to wash and take care of the hygiene, and then get into your relaxing bath for about ten minutes.

Here you may want to get the water temperature to about 98 to 105 degrees Fahrenheit (37 to 41 degrees Celsius) in which you can wallow for about 15 minutes.

When the bathwater has been drawn add a total of about 6 – 7 drops of any, or a mixture of the following oils:

So next time when you sit surrounded in your bath, spare a thought to the idea that it can be far more of a happening than just simply a cleansing ritual.

Should you suffer from health problems, please take note that some of these baths described above may be too hot for you, since it may increase your blood pressure. If in doubt, please consult your licensed medical practitioner.

This very basic form of treatment entails the folding of a piece of material, bandage or small towel, into a pad wetting it and applying it to the areas to be treated. Two types of compresses can be used – that being cold or hot, and each of them has a specific place in the treatment of muscular pain, sprains, increasing circulation as well as reducing pain and congestion of the internal organs, and relieve lymphatic and fluid congestion.

 

Hot Compresses

Hot compresses are used to treat old injuries, muscle pain, rheumatic pain, menstrual cramps, boils, and toothache.

Making a hot compress

To make a hot compress, take about a pint of hot water, as warm as you can comfortably stand it, and add about 4 drops of your selected essential oil to it. Then place your folded piece of material, bandage or small towel, on top of the water and let it soak it up. Next wring out the excess water and place it over the area to be treated.

Cover the warm compress with either cling wrap or a plastic bag, and another towel on top to keep it in place. You may bandage the compress lightly if applied to an awkward place where it keeps slipping off.

Leave on, and replace with a new compress as soon as it has cooled to body temperature.

 

Cold Compresses

Cold compresses are used for recent sprains, bruising, swelling and inflammation, fever and headaches. It can also be used as a pep-up when feeling tired.

Making a cold compress

A cold compress is made exactly the same as the hot compress, but ice or refrigerated water is used instead of the hot water, and the compress is replaced when it has heated up to body temperature.

 

Essential oils and compresses

To select your essential oil for use with the compresses, have a look at the therapeutic properties of the essential oils, and then also view the individual essential oil profiles.

Please note that all serious illnesses must be referred to your licensed medical practitioner.

The idea sometimes exists that foot and hand baths are only used by the elderly and the infirm, yet they are wonderful tools to perform treatments on specific areas, and can also be most energizing and relaxing. When looking at the philosophy of reflexology, you will see that the whole body is represented in the feet, and this might be the reason why so many people experience a whole range of positive effects from having a footbath.

To add more zing to your pedicure or manicure, you can always incorporate a couple of drops of oil when soaking the feet or the hands.

Foot and hand baths are a great way to prepare the feet and hands for a massage session, or as a finale to reflexology or pressure massage.

 

Preparing a foot or hand bath

They are normally prepared with warm water in a bowl large enough for the feet or hands, with a little space free to allow for the water to rise when they are immersed.

After preparing the bath, mix five drops of your chosen essential oil with one dessertspoon of apple cider vinegar and add it to the bath. We find the apple cider vinegar a great way to help disperse the oil, and it also has its own therapeutic properties.

Should you prefer not to use the apple cider vinegar, you could mix the essential oil with some powered milk, and forming it into a paste before mixing with the water, as it also helps to disperse the oil.

However, the apple cider vinegar nor the powered milk is required, and the essential oil can be used directly into the bath.

If you want to add an extra relaxing dimension to your footbath, you can place marbles or small pebbles at the bottom of the bath to run your feet over.

Electric footbaths are also great since they have a massaging action that agitates the water and helps to aerate it, while zinging up circulation.

Should you be performing a footbath on your own, and you are still lithe enough, you could rest one foot on the other knee and do a gentle massage on each sole, while busy with the footbath.

 

Selecting essential oil for a foot or hand bath

Your choice of essential oil can be purely based on your favorite fragrance, yet essential oils offer a wide variety of therapeutic properties as well, which may be a great way to help treat a specific problem.

To have a look at the various oils, and their corresponding therapeutic properties, please click here.

 

Benefits of a footbath

Footbaths are great for helping to relieve rheumatic pains and aches, excessive perspiration, revive tired and burning feet (and a tired body) and a great way to pamper your hard-working, and often forgotten feet.

 

Benefits of a hand bath hand baths

Although footbaths are far more general than a hand bath, they also offer a wide variety of benefits to your often abused hands. A good soak will also help with rheumatism or arthritic pain, ease cramps and are also a good way to give your hands some extra attention.

 

After the foot or hand bath

After soaking for about 10 – 15 minutes dry thoroughly and apply a good moisturizing cream, or a little vegetable oil, such as jojoba oil, and maybe a touch of the essential oil that you use in the bath.

To keep your crowning glory in the best possible shape you need to look after it with some thought of what it has to endure. We bemoan the fact that our skin wrinkle and our muscles sag with age, yet we seldom think about our hair that simply keep on growing regardless.

Some unfortunate people do however suffer from hair-loss (alopecia) at some stage of their life, and this could be contributed to a variety of problems – from irreversible genetic factors handed down by your ancestors (such as male pattern baldness also called androgenetic alopecia (AGA) which also involves hormones), to less permanent hair loss which could be due to illness, fever, thyroid problems, radiation, poor circulation, malnutrition, stress etc.

Although essential oils cannot claim to help with all ills that may befall your poor hair, some of them have been used for centuries to help in making the most of hair and is reputed to help for thinning hair.

These aromatic botanical essences are used for more than their mere smell, and some have some great therapeutic properties as well with some tricologists also believing in their properties.

Even if you do not believe in the positive way that essential oils could influence your general health, the great smell alone is enough to consider including it in your daily hair care regime.

Commercial products can be in some cases be used and the essential oils mixed in with them – you could for instance add more zing to your shampoo by adding your selected oil.

 

Hair loss (alopecia)

If you wish to give essential oils a try to help you with your hair loss, then you could look at oils such as

Of the above we would recommend that you consider using Rosemary, since it has been used as a trusted compound in hair care for a long time. It, or any of the above can be added to shampoo or can be blended (2 drops to 15 ml carrier oil) and used as a compound to do a scalp massage.

 

Dandruff

In the discipline of essential oils and aromatherapy the following are used to help with dandruff:

These oils can be used as a scalp massage (in the dilution described above) or mixed with your shampoo, but if you are having a problem with oily hair rather look at using tea tree oil, and with dry hair rosemary.

You could also make a “floral water” or “hydrosol” of sorts, to use as a final rinse. Take a plastic water bottle and add 10 drops of essential oil to 1 liter of lukewarm water. Cap the bottle and shake well. Now take a coffee filter, and filter the water through it and use the resultant slightly fragranced water as a final rinse.

If you have never used a specific essential oil, it may be a wise precaution to do a skin patch test beforehand to ascertain if you have any allergic reaction to it.

Should you have a health condition that requires medical attention, kindly consult your licensed medical practitioner.

Never mind by which name you know the spa baths in which you sit and are pummeled by water jets moving the water around – it must be one of the most relaxing ways to finish off a day. Not only is a jacuzzi a relaxing way to end a day, but a great way to prevent stiffness after a hard workout in the gym, since the water jet movement is beneficial in helping to move the lactic acid out of your muscles.

It is strange that with the popularity of spa baths, so few people ever think of introducing essential oils into the experience, yet it is an extremely effective way to use essential oils, as the water is being circulated the whole time, plus the heated water which helps to diffuse the fragrance molecules.

But please note – only pure essential oils are to be used, as any essential oil which is blended in a carrier oil (fixed oil) will clog the pipes of the spa bath.

Pure and undiluted essential oils are volatile and will evaporate, and will not cause any clogging of the expensive piping and pump. It is however best to select essential oils that are not too resinous or heavy, as some of their constituents may leave a residue on the pipes.

If you are using the jacuzzi outside in sunlight, or when tanning, refrain from selecting oils that have sun sensitizing properties – for more information click here.

Should you be having friends over to join you in the spa bath, select oils that are not known irritants, as some of your guests may have sensitive skins – for more information please click here.

Placing too much essential oil in the water can not only be a waste, but can also cause the oil to burn the skin, since pure essential oils are very concentrated and must be used with care – for more information on essential oil safety issues, please click here.

 

The way to introduce essential oils to your spa bath

Once the spa bath has been filled, and the pump ready to be switched on, then put 6 – 8 drops of pure essential oil in a small spa bath, or 10 drops for larger ones that can take 3 – 4 people.

 

Hygiene of a spa bath

Since the spa bath heats up the water, and the water is not always drained off after every use, water hygiene is important.

If you only use the spa bath personally, risk of cross infections are remote, but when having friends join you, you may consider using a small percentage of your allowed oil on an anti-bacterial and anti-fungal oil.

Water should also be drained off regularly.

To have a look at the therapeutic properties of essential oils, please click here.

 

Benefits of a spa bath

The constant running of the water creates negative ions, which are beneficial to your health, and the pure tactile sensation of the whirling hot water is a great way to relax and de-stress.

If you then couple the hedonics of your favorite essential oil, with the benefits of fragrance therapy, you make this experience an even better one.

The systematic manipulation of the soft tissue, otherwise known as massage, does not only help relieve sore muscles and help you to relax, but includes a host of other health benefits.

Although our essential oils are often used in massage therapy, which is referred to as aromatherapy, pure massage therapy (with or without the inclusion of essential oils) is recommended for a variety of ailments and problems and some studies have found it to be beneficial for a selection of problems:

  • treatment of pain
  • nausea
  • muscle spasms
  • soft-tissue problems
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • insomnia
  • emotional stress
  • helping premature infants gain weight
  • helping elderly patients relax
  • helping to improve the immune system
  • asthma
  • eating disorders
  • hypertension
  • recovering from surgery

Massage therapy is not a substitute for conventional medicine, but does provide excellent complementary back-up.

Massage is an ancient form of treatment and is referred to in Chinese medicinal text of nearly 4,000 years ago.

There are various forms of massage which would include the stroking, rubbing, pressing and kneading of muscles, skin and joints and can range from Swedish massage to a more gentle relaxing massage.

 

Recommended books on massage therapy 

Should you be interested to read more about massage therapy, we could recommend the following books from Amazon.com:

A sauna is a dry-heat sweat bath and forms an integral part of alternative health therapies as well as most hydro therapies in the world today. Most heath clubs and gyms have sauna facilities. The main difference between a Turkish bath and a sauna is the fact that a Turkish bath relies on hot, wet steam – whereas a sauna relies on drier heat.

The heat inside a sauna is normally kept at a steady temperature with a relative humidity of between 15 – 30 percent. The Finns normally keep the humidity in their saunas a bit higher at about 40 percent.

We have included this information in our website, since we do believe that it can be beneficial to a person’s health if used properly, and include some essential oils which could be used to make the sauna experience an even better one.

It must however be noted from the start that some believers in hydro therapies prefer the use of Turkish or steam baths instead of saunas, as they believe that saunas could be too drying and could cause the skin to age, especially if all the instructions on having a sauna are not strictly adhered to.

With this in mind, we would like to recommend some essential oils for your sauna, before we carry on with the article about the health benefits of a sauna as such.

Most people associate the smell of Eucalyptus with a sauna, but in Finland, the birthplace of saunas, the smell of Birch is associated with them, as Birch logs are traditionally used to fire the saunas.

You will read later, the main purpose of having a sauna should be to help with the elimination of wastes, your choice of oil to use should reinforce this use.

The following oils can be used on their own in the sauna, with the most popular being Eucalyptus, Pine and Peppermint – but Tea Tree, Lemon, Lavender, Niaouli, Clary Sage, Cypress, Rosemary, Lime, Grapefruit and Bergamot are also great.

Should you wish to combine oils, you could look at the following combinations:

Combination 1
Sandalwood 10 drops
Lemon 5 drops
Benzoin 1 drop
Geranium 2 drops
Mix all together and use 4 drops at a time as indicated below.

Combination 2
Pine 3 drops
Rosemary 3 drops
Niaouli 2 drops
Bergamot 2 drops
Grapefruit 8 drops
Mix all together and use 4 drops at a time as indicated below.
Using essential oils in the sauna Sauna health benefits promoting health using essential oils in sauna eucalyptus heat humidity

Pure undiluted essential oil must never be placed on the super-heated rocks of the sauna – the dilution to use is to add 4 drops of pure essential oil to 1 liter of water, and then to use this fragranced water when dousing the rocks in the sauna.

It is generally accepted that sauna baths originated in Finland, although “sweat therapy” or “sweat baths” are part of many cultural or folk medicines.

The logic behind the health benefits of having a sauna, is that sitting in a heated sauna would simulate an artificial “fever” and in so doing stimulate the immune response of the body to be activated, which in turn would speed up the production of white blood cells – some studies have shown a remarkable increase during “artificial fevers”.

It furthermore is supposed to help the production of interferon in the body. Interferon is an anti-viral protein that has powerful cancer fighting properties.

In European hydrotherapy a sauna is normally used before a body massage, to prepare the muscles by “loosening” them and making them more supple for the massage.

This order is reversed in America, as well as in the Indian Ayurvedic system, where the massage is normally followed by a sweat bath to assist with eliminating toxins that might have been dislodged during the massage session.

Since a sauna also speeds up the chemical processes in the body, it is also a favorite way to help clear the body of accumulated toxins. Not only does it speed up the body processes, but also perks up the working of the skin, which as the largest organ is important for waste removal, and in so doing stimulates the process to sweat, and helps remove waste products. It is with this same logic that body-wraps are used.

During a 15 minute session in a sauna, the average person can lose between 0.5 – 1.5 liters of water, and it is therefore essential that people drink water before and after a sauna to prevent dehydration.

People that feel a cold or flu starting, have reported that they can ward off the manifestation of the actual symptoms by taking sauna baths. This may however not be a good idea for all people since a hot sauna may place strain on the heart.

Taking a sauna will increase your heart rate and although it is claimed by some that it only increases the heart rate, and not your blood pressure, we would advise people that have elevated blood pressure not to have a sauna before checking the advisability with their medical practitioner.

During a sauna the capillaries dilate, increasing the flow of blood to the skin and it is this increased capillary volume which some alternative practitioners believe helps to keep blood pressure “normal” during a sauna. It must however be stressed that people with high blood pressure should not take a sauna without the permission of their licensed medical practitioner.

The temperature during a sauna increases the skin temperature by about 10 degrees Celsius and the body temperature by about 3 degrees Celsius – the “artificial fever”, which many alternative practitioners believe helps to kill off unwanted bacteria and viruses, plus gets the body to move its immune system into a higher gear.

While having a sweat session, your body will also require more oxygen, and an increase of up to 20 percent is reported, and with this greater demand on the lungs more wastes can be expelled by them.

Should the air be too dry in a sauna – as in most American saunas – the mucus membranes of the lungs may become dry and damaged, and for this reason it is best to ensure that some form of humidity is maintained.

Some of the positive effects of a sauna are also attributed to the fact that splashing water on super heated rocks causes a lot of negative ions to be formed in the air. In Europe and the Soviet Union, research has been done that indicates that negative ions are conducive to promoting health and assist in remedying various health problems.

Unfortunately, some of the electric saunas in America do not heat the rocks enough, and the reverse is achieved with more positive ions being formed – which is exactly the opposite effect you want to achieve.

Another interesting fact about a sauna is that the heat helps the body to get rid of lactic acid which is formed during exercise, and for this reason it may be a good idea to have a sauna after a particularly heavy training session. But remember to first wait awhile after exercising and to have a cool shower before entering the sauna.

After having their sweat bath the Finnish people normally have a heart stopping plunge into ice cold water, and although proponents of this practice swear by the positive effects it is supposed to have on your health, we would caution people to not follow this technique unless they have very strong constitutions.

In some spas in the world, people are treated to a cold hosing-down after a sauna, and although this is less of a shock than a plunge into ice cold water and very invigorating, it should not be practiced by people that are prone to asthma attacks. People suffering from asthma should also not sauna without first consulting their medical practitioner.

 

Some notes on sauna safety

People normally have a cool shower after a session in the sauna, and this should be followed by a resting period of about 20 – 30 minutes before entering the sauna again.

No food should be eaten before a sauna or during a session, but enough water must be taken in to replace the water lost through the induced sweating.

Saunas are also not indicated for pregnant women, children or elderly people, or for people suffering from pneumonia, any other respiratory diseases,

Should you have an open wound, or feel feverish, do not sauna.

If you have any health concerns, first consult your licensed medical practitioner before using a sauna.

To have a cool bracing shower is one of the best ways to start the day, and a longer and warmer shower is a great way to wash the problems of the day away. It is not only the running water that has this effect, but the generation of negative ions with the water falling, also has a positive effect on your well-being.

Most people prefer to shower because of the time saving aspect, but in Japanese bathhouses patrons first have a shower to clean themselves before enjoying the deeply relaxing (and tiring) bathing ritual.

Although our quest is to get clean in the shower, we can however add another dimension to this quick cleansing way.

After your regular wash, put two to three drops of your favorite essential oil on a facecloth or sponge and give your body a quick rub-over while standing in the running water and inhaling the fragrance.

Since the oil will be not be in contact with your skin for such length of time as to be therapeutic, your choice should be based on the pure sense of enjoyment only.

 

Fragrance therapy with inhalation

Fragrance therapy also has an influence on various parts of your body and general well-being, and in this therapy, the olfactory bulb is stimulated and the limbic system is activated.

For this reason we advise that you use an oil you find pleasant, since hedonics come into play in the way your body will react.

If you have never used essential oils we suggest that you perform a skin patch test, and also please look at the safety information.

Sitz baths are used to help treat problems in the pelvic and genital areas, although most hydrotherapy people would recommend it as a general tonic as well.

A sitz bath, or hip bath is normally undertaken in a custom built bath, but can also be taken in a normal bathtub.

The addition of suitable essential oils can further enhance the experience of a sitz bath, but be sure to mix the oil well into the water before immersion, to prevent the oil form irritating mucous membranes.

Tea Tree Oil is a popular oil to add to a sitz bath since it has some great properties, but any oil can be added to assist with your particular problem to be treated.

To select an oil for your specific needs, click here to have a look at the most suitable essential oil.

When taking a sitz bath, the lower abdominal and genital area is submerged, but the upper part of the body and the legs raised out of the water.

This particular type of bath is used to help increase blood flow to the pelvic area.

 

Hot sitz baths

A hot sitz bath is taken in warm water of 95 – 105º F / 35 – 41º C, with the water level not higher than your navel.

Beneficial for:

hemorrhoids (haemorrhoids, piles)
muscular problems
painful testicles
painful ovaries
uterine cramps
prostate problems

 

Cold sitz bath

In a cold sitz bath, water of only a few inches deep is used and should not be colder than 68º F / 20º C. note

Beneficial for:

constipation
impotence
inflammation
vaginal discharge

 

Hot and cold sitz bath

You can also take alternate hot / cold sitz baths, where you will stay in the hot bath for 3 – 4 minutes and then have a cold sitz bath. When finishing a cold / hot sitz bath, finish off with your pelvic area in the cold bath. note

Beneficial for:

abdominal disorders
congestion
headaches
neuralgia
swollen ankles

 

General Sitz bath and essential oils

*A sitz bath is normally taken for about 20 – 30 minutes, and water is normally added to maintain the temperature.

Some people prefer to take cold sitz baths using ice water, but the length of such a cold sitz bath in ice water must not be done for longer than 60 seconds (1 minute).

A variety of creams can be made at home, ranging from cosmetics, face packs and skin care to soothing balms and salves to help you achieve a naturally healthy and younger looking face and skin.

Many people expect any cream or lotion to show overnight effects, but you need to be patient and let your skin regenerate in order to see the difference – and the older you get the longer the cycle of regeneration is. On average you should see results between 28 and 37 days.

Essential oils have various therapeutic properties which add zing to any cream, and some of them have very specialized properties to help with skin conditions. If you have never used essential oils, and are prone to allergic reactions, please do a skin patch test with any new ingredient you use.

 

Some oils to consider for facial creams would include: 

Chamomile German
Clary sage
Fennel
Frankincense
Geranium
Hyssop
Lavender
Myrrh
Neroli
Palmarosa
Rose
Rosemary
The list above includes oils that have great properties that can be of use to help fight wrinkles and the traces of aging.

When selecting essential oils for facial or body creams and lotions, stay away from sun sensitizing essential oils, as they will cause a problem if you go into the sun.

 

Aqueous base cream

If you do not want to get involved with too much mixing, you can make a simple moisturizer by using a neutral aqueous base cream, obtainable from your pharmacy, druggist or health shop, and add your desired essential oils to it.

Do not exceed the recommended dilution of essential oil to the base, since more is not always better, and you could burn your skin with too strong a mixture.

For the proper dilution rates for cream, please click here.

 

Beeswax and oil cream

Below is the recipe for a richer cream than just an aqueous base cream, but please note that it should be kept cool and for no longer than six weeks.

  1. Melt 15 g of pure beeswax together with 130 ml sweet almond oil, in a bain-marie.
  2. Do not melt the beeswax in a pot on direct heat from a plate on the stove (electric or gas) since it can burn easily and cause a fire hazard.
  3. Another fixed oil can be used instead of the almond oil, although sweet almond oil does do wonders for the skin.
  4. Some people are hesitant to use beeswax in skin products, since they think that it will “block the pores” but when used in a mixture like this, not only does it do wonders for softening the skin, but will not cause any problems.
  5. If you are allergic to bee products, care should be taken when using it.
  6. While the beeswax is melting, gently warm 50 ml rosewater, or any other floral water, using the same method as above.
  7. Next start to mix the floral water to the beeswax and oil mixture, mixing it with a whisk or electric mixer. This should be done slowly and as soon as a quarter of the water has been added, remove the pot from the bain-marie, and complete the water addition.
  8. When you have finished adding the water the mixture will start to set, and before it does mix in 8 drops of your chosen essential oil.
When steam and essential oils are combined they form a very potent way to help treat some ailments, especially those of the upper respiratory tract, nose and sinuses. This type of treatment should not be used by anybody suffering from asthma.

This type of treatment can be effective when you are suffering from a cold, wheezing chest, sinus discomfort etc. – but remember if you have a medical problem, please contact your licensed medical practitioner.

We have listed some conditions below, with corresponding essential oils that may be of help. You could use a single oil, or you can combine oils – it all depends on personal preference, and what works for your particular problem.

 

Breathing difficulties

Cedarwood
Eucalyptus
Pine

 

Bronchitis

Basil
Benzoin
Cedarwood
Clove
Eucalyptus
Frankincense
Pine
Sandalwood
Rosemary
Tea tree oil
Thyme

 

Colds

Bay
Black pepper
Clove
Ginger
Myrrh
Orange
Pine
Rosemary
Tea tree

 

Coughing

Benzoin
Black pepper
Cedarwood
Frankincense
Peppermint
Rosemary
Cypress

 

Sinus

Basil
Rosemary
Tea tree
Eucalyptus
Lavender
Peppermint

Instructions to do steam inhalation

Pour hot water into a bowl and 3 drops of the essential oil that you have selected, place your head about 12 inches (30 cm) above the bowl and cover your head with a towel in such a way that the sides are totally closed and you in actual fact form a tent over the bowl.

Keep your eyes shut and breathe deeply through your nose for 1 to 2 minutes.

If you feel that the treatment is getting too much for you, raise the towel so that fresh air is brought into the area and breathe through your mouth a couple of times and then resume the treatment. Should you at any time feel uncomfortable discontinue the treatment.

When using this treatment with children or elderly people make sure that they do not burn themselves by getting too close to the bowl, or that the steaming water is upset and burns result.

This must be one of the most enjoyable applications of essential oils, and involves vaporizing the oils in a variety of devices into the air that we breathe. This differs from having synthetically fragranced potpourri placed around a room, since with essential oil vaporization, you get both the benefit of a fragrant smelling room, plus the benefits of the therapeutic effects of the essential oils.

The most common way of vaporizing a room is to add the essential oils to a vaporizer which comes made in different materials – from ceramic, terra- cotta, metal and glass etc – all with two separate containers – the top one for water and essential oils (or crystals and essential oils) and the bottom one housing a night candle to provide the gentle heat.

Vapor therapy can also be as simple as dropping some essential oil onto a tissue or handkerchief and smelling it at interval.

When buying a vaporizer opt for one with a large top reservoir – it will help as you would not need to constantly top it up. The general rule is about 6 – 8 drops of essential oil to the water in the top reservoir, but that will also depend on the size of the room.

As soon as the candle starts to heat up the water above it, the essential oil in the water will start to evaporate and the aroma will dissipate.

Use this type of vaporizer with care when around children or elderly people, since the candle is an open flame, and the water can be quite hot.

An alternative to the candle type of diffuser is to use an electric or ultrasound diffuser.

Light-bulb rings are also useful, and are available in ceramic as well as metal. The oils are placed on the ring, and the ring is then placed on a cold, turned-off light bulb. As soon as the light-bulb is switched on, the essential oil starts to evaporate and the aroma dissipates.

Another way to vaporize a cupboard, is to place a few drops of essential oil on a small ball of cotton wool, and then to place the cotton wool ball in a cupboard or drawer – but take care that it does not touch your clothes, since the oil may stain.

Some people use this method to keep fish moths and other undesirables away from their clothes and to add a fragrance to their clothes cupboards. An oil often used to combat fish moths is clove oil, and although strong smelling is a very nice fragrance to have in your cupboards.

 

Vaporization and fragrance therapy

Since essential oils have their own therapeutic benefits, they are used in fragrance therapy, and although this may be a slightly controversial subject, research has shown some very interesting results of how essential oils when diffused in the air.

Vaporizing the essential oils forces the molecules to become airborne, where we then can benefit in two ways – we trigger our limbic system through our smell sensation by means of the olfactory bulb, plus we can absorb them when we breathe them into our lungs, where they are also absorbed by the body.

For more on the essential oil research and its effect on the human body, please have a look at our page which deals with the olfactory bulb and limbic system, by clicking here.

 

The benefits of vaporization

Respiratory tract problems
Treating throat infections
Eliminating catarrhal conditions
Relieving mental and physical fatigue
Reducing tension and anxiety
Calming the nervous system