Correct Essential Oil Application

by a Certified Clinical Aromatherapist

Tips and Tricks for Best Essential Oil Application


How you apply an essential oil greatly affects what it does and impacts its healing capabilities. Essential oils are highly concentrated, in fact, essential oils are the most concentrated form of healing phytochemicals (natural biochemicals from plants) that we have. Due to this incredible concentration and their fast absorption rates, it’s important to understand how to properly use and apply essential oils for best results. The method of application you will use depends on what you're using the essential oil for.






Inhalation

Indeed the term "Aromatherapy" comes from the use of aromas (inhaling essential oils) for health and healing. Inhaling essential oils is one of the most effective methods of essential oil application. Inhalation is possibly the easiest and most widely accepted form of aromatherapy. Lots of people have asked, does the essential oil work if you just inhale it? The answer is yes, absolutely! When you inhale an essential oil, those minuscule aromatic molecules are inhaled and pass your olfactory epithelial tissue (your sense of smell) and depending on the oil you inhale, instantly trigger a balancing, stimulating, calming, or releasing effect. When you smell those potent, powerful little essential oil molecules it can instantly start to balance and regulate glands, chemicals, hormones, and brain functions in your body. Inhalation is also the very best method of application if you're using essential oils for emotional release. In fact, no matter what application method you're using make sure to smell the oil you're applying for its olfactory benefits!

What are the best ways to inhale essential oils?
  • Diffusing Essential Oils in a Diffuser
    • The very best way is with an atomizing diffuser. Using an atomizing diffuser is the only way to get lots of those powerful aromatic molecules up into the air so you can breathe them in. No other method of application works as well. A good atomizing diffuser does not use any water, has zero heat, and is especially effective when you become sick as it puts out way more essential oil into the air than a diffuser that uses water and you can customize its output. We sell the best atomizing diffuser on the market, check it out here.
  • Aromatherapy Jewelry, Personal Diffuser
    • If you aren't ready for a diffuser then try our amazing selection of aromatherapy jewelry which is one of the most fun and stylish ways to use your essential oils every day.
  • Aromasticks
    • Try these super inexpensive reusable aromasticks that will surprise you how well they work.
  • Cotton Ball
    • In a pinch, one of my favorite ways to inhale essential oils is to put one or two drops onto a cotton ball, hold that aromatic cotton ball under your nose and inhale deeply for five to twenty minutes.

Inhalation is best for:
  • Emotional release
  • Mood enhancement
  • Calming and relaxing
  • Creating a healthy fragrant atmosphere in the room

Best essential oils for inhalation:
Respiratory blend - The #1 best blend of essential oils to support, boost, and disinfect the respiratory system boost, and disinfect the respiratory system
Eucalyptus radiata - beneficial for the respiratory system, this oil opens and decongests
Lemon - beneficial for the respiratory system, cleans the air, disinfecting
Sweet Orange - beneficial for the immune system, supports the brain
Spearmint - A strengthening and stimulating oil, also good for emotional release
Lavender - best known as a calming and relaxing oil, boosts the immune system
Focus & Memory blend - Naturally boosts brain function, focus, and memory
Peace of Mind blend - Releases low-frequency emotions like anxiety, depression, fear, anger, and rage
Release blend - Calms and balances the body, helps with sleep, also releases low-frequency emotions from the body



Topical Application

Applying essential oils is a fabulous method of application and useful for so many things! Remember essential oils are super concentrated substances, so you don't usually apply them to your skin undiluted. You will want to dilute essential oils with a good carrier oil.

Carrier Oils

Carrier oils are not essential oils, they are fixed fatty oils from the seed or nut like grapeseed oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, or jojoba oil. You use carrier oils to dilute the concentrated essential oils, like you use water to dilute concentrated orange juice.

Hot Tip: If you're using the highest grade cleanest USDA certified organic essential oils, don't put them into a nonorganic carrier oil, as you would be introducing toxins to your blend that you don't want in there. So when using organic essential oils use only organic carrier oils too. That way you're getting the cleanest, purest form of aromatherapy you can use. It's critical when you're using oils for therapeutic use.

The percentage of dilution you will create to apply topically depends on several factors. How old is the person? What are their health concerns? Where are you applying the oil? Is it for local coverage or for all over use? So it's difficult to give a flat percentage that will work for everyone. Here's a dilution chart for your reference.

General Guidelines:

.5 -1% dilution for children, pregnant women, ailing elderly
3% dilution for daily use and all over body massage
4-10% dilution for local issues, acute situations, and specific problems
5-20% dilution for pain, wounds, infections

Dilution Percentage

1%

2%

3%

5%

10%

25%

50%

Drops of essential oil for

1 ml, .2 tsp, or 1/12 oz carrier oil

20 drops

1

2

5

10

Drops of essential oil for

5 ml, 1 tsp, or oz carrier oil

100 drops

1

2

3

5

10

25

50

Drops of essential oil for

10 ml, 2 tsp, or ⅓ oz carrier oil

200 drops

2

4

6

10

20

50

100

Drops of essential oil for

15 ml, 3 tsp, or ½ oz carrier oil

300 drops

3

6

9

15

30

75

150

Drops of essential oil for

20 ml, 4 tsp, or ⅔ oz carrier oil

400 drops

4

8

12

20

40

100

200

Drops of essential oil for

25 ml, 5 tsp, or oz carrier oil

500 drops

5

10

15

25

50

125

250

Drops of essential oil for

30 ml, 6 tsp, or 1 oz carrier oil

600 drops

6

12

18

30

60

150

300

Drops of essential oil for

60 ml, 12 tsp, or 2 oz carrier oil

1200 drops

12

24

36

60

120

300

600

Drops of essential oil for

90 ml, 18 tsp, or 3 oz carrier oil

1800 drops

18

36

54

90

180

450

900

Drops of essential oil for

120 ml, 24 tsp, or 4 oz carrier oil

2400 drops

24

48

72

120

240

600

1200


Topical application is best for:
  • Aromatherapy Massage
  • Aromatherapy Facials
  • Pain issues
  • Tight muscles
  • Indigestion
  • Swelling
  • Rashes
  • Wounds
  • Burns
  • Sunburns (try this blend!)
  • Infections
Some of the best places to apply essential oils topically are:

  • Spine/back - Great for overall coverage, to calm a person (massage), or to get oils distributed systemically.
  • Feet - Your feet are one of the best places to apply essential oils. The soles of your feet have larger pores and absorb better than almost anywhere else on your body. When you apply essential oils to the soles of your feet they quickly get into your blood stream. For example, to boost your immune system when sick apply the Immune blend to the soles of your feet.
  • Hands and arms - Have you ever had an aromatic hand and arm massage? Talk about soothing, calming, and nurturing. Do this for your spouse, kids, or elderly loved ones. Fantastic!
  • Chest - Applying essential oils to the chest is beneficial when you also want to inhale the aroma, like when you're stuffy and need decongesting apply Respiratory blend to the chest.
  • Neck - Who doesn't love a great aromatic neck massage?

Best essential oils to use for topical application are:

Pain Ease blend - a special blend of essential oils for deep and lasting pain relief
Lavender - best known as a calming and relaxing oil, boosts the immune system
Tea Tree - one of the best cleansing and disinfecting oils
Peppermint - a stimulating oil great for pain, inflammation, spasms, and focus
Relax blend - a calming and relaxing blend, specifically calms and quiets the mind
Release blend - calms and balances the body, helps with sleep, also releases low-frequency emotions from the body
Digestion blend - a blend of effective digestive essential oils to help and ease digestive issues
Wound Repair blend - a powerful blend of all the best essential oils that were used anciently for wound healing and scars

Hot Tip: Adding essential oils to your moisturizers, lotions, creams, and healing salves is just another way to use essential oils topically. Mixing all natural essential oils into your favorite unscented lotions, creams, and healing salves will improve their therapeutic properties and make them smell amazing!




Natural Perfumes

Making and wearing natural perfumes is a luxurious and elegantly health promoting way to use your essential oils. Our pure USDA certified organic essential oils smell so good most people want to bathe in them anyway! The only problem is that essential oils absorb so quickly into the skin that the aroma or scent does not last very long. A way to make the smell last longer in a natural perfume is to mix the essential oil into a fixative to hold it on the skin for longer. You can use a lotion, cream, salve, or any other natural fixative agent for this.

Natural Perfumes is best for:
  • Wearing a scent you like as a personal perfume
  • Putting a scent you like in your personal diffuser
  • Mix it into your unscented cream, or lotion for a body scent
  • Diffusing your natural perfume scent to fragrance the room

Best essential oils to use for natural perfumes are:
Jasmine - This Jasmine is a delightful floral that will take you back to fragrant Hawaiian nights
Rose - Rosa damascena - the most medicinal rose oil in the world. You haven't smelled rose oil until you've smelled this one
Lavender - best known as a calming and relaxing oil, boosts the immune system
Tangerine - a bright, light citrus scent to boost your mood
Red Mandarin - this is a must smell oil. It will make your mouth water and lift your mood like no other
Roman Chamomile - our certified organic Roman chamomile is so powerful and potent, does not have an equal
Ylang Ylang - known as the flower of flowers, this sweet and fragrant floral will knock your socks off!
Sandalwood - this is just about the most highly prized and precious oil out there, but the smell is amazing!
Cedarwood - lovely woody, sweet, and lasting fragrant
Or make a combination of your favorites!



Combine Aromatherapy with Hydrotherapy for Exponential Benefits

Aromatherapy Baths

When adding essential oils to your bath it's critical that you first mix the essential oil into an emulsifier so that the drop of oil doesn't float up to the top of the water and lots of the oil's benefits are lost. To avoid this first mix the essential oils into a good sea mineral salt. We highly recommend the Dead Sea Mineral Salts available here due to their amazing and beneficial percentages of minerals they have for your body.
Here's my favorite recipe for an Aromatherapy Bath:
1/2 to 1 Cup Dead Sea Mineral Salts
10 to 15 drops essential oil
Mix the essential oil drops into the dry sea salt
Add the aromatic salts to your warm bath water
Enjoy!
The salts will emulsify the essential oils so your body can absorb them and receive their beneficial properties
My very favorite essential oils to use in the bath is a blend I formulated just for this called the Bathing Oil blend. In over 14 years of studying essential oils, this is by far my favorite smell of essential oils of all my blends! It boosts your immune system, is calming, is emotionally releasing, and smells amazing! But you can use any essential oils in your bath that you choose.

Aromatherapy Foot Baths

If you don't have time for a full bath or a full bath is not an option, try a foot bath! This is a great option for our elderly loved ones. Your feet absorb essential oils very well and your whole body will benefit from the essential oils used in foot baths. Just cut the recipe in half:
1/4 to 1/2 Cup Dead Sea Mineral Salts
5 to 8 drops essential oil
Mix the essential oil drops into the dry sea salt
Add the aromatic salts to your warm foot bath water
Enjoy!

Best essential oils to use in baths and foot baths:
Bathing Oil blend - an amazing smelling blend to use in your baths (and other applications) to boost your immune system, calm your mind, boost healthy brain function, and relax your body
Immune blend - a super immune boosting blend of essential oils to support your immune system
Pain Ease blend - a special blend of essential oils for deep and lasting pain relief
Lavender - best known as a calming and relaxing oil, boosts the immune system
Roman Chamomile - our certified organic Roman chamomile is so powerful and potent, does not have an equal
Eucalyptus globulus - the strongest of all the eucalyptus oils, powerful, opening, and bright
Rosemary - a lovely smelling and immune boosting oil that will also boost your healthy brain function

Ingesting

Ingesting is by far the most controversial method of application. I'm going to tell you that you can ingest certain essential oils for amazing results, but listen closely this is critical information: You can ONLY ingest an essential oil if it is USDA certified organic. Let me explain...

Because essential oils are so very concentrated if they are not certified organic then they are NOT safe to ingest because of the risk of them containing highly concentrated toxins. Think about it: If a plant is nonorganic when it is harvested and distilled there are toxins on that plant from toxic and synthetic pesticides, herbicides, larvicides, insecticides, chemical fertilizers, and sewage sludge. Those toxins on the plant go through the distillation process and end up concentrated in your essential oils. All of these toxic and synthetic chemicals are prohibited in certified organic farming. So if you're using certified organic essential oils you are guaranteed that the plant used to make the oil has NEVER been exposed to any of those toxins. Isn't that the kind of plant you want your essential oils to come from? You CANNOT risk ingesting nonorganic essential oils because then you will be also ingesting very concentrated toxins that are very harmful to your body and cause all sorts of problems!

So if you're going to ingest essential oils you must be absolutely sure that they are certified organic or you CANNOT ingest them. How do you tell if an essential oil is certified organic? It's super easy! Look right on the label for the USDA certified organic seal. If the USDA certified organic seal is not right on the label - you cannot ingest that oil. Period. No matter what that company told you about their purity, if the USDA certified organic seal is not right on the label, then the oil inside is not organic - don't ingest it.

Again, remember that essential oils are super concentrated and when it come to ingesting essential oils less is more. Not every essential oils can be ingested, and when ingesting you need to be trained in how to do it safely. If you're not familiar with ingesting essential oils, then don't ingest any of them unless you have consulted your medical doctor or a certified clinical aromatherapist.

One Last Thought...

We all want to use the purest, cleanest, most effective essential oils when we use them therapeutically. If you feel this way then you want to be using USDA certified organic essential oils. Certified organic essential oils are guaranteed by the USDA that they have never ever been exposed to harsh toxic biocides that are extensively used in nonorganic conventional cultivation. It's the only way that you can be absolutely sure you're getting truly clean oils. For the highest quality oils make sure the USDA seal is on the label of the bottle of oil you are using.

The highest quality cleanest essential oils have the USDA seal right on the label (on every label).
Everything else is just wishful thinking and fancy marketing. Don't be fooled and don't settle for less.


Enjoy using your essential oils!

Holly Draper

Certified Clinical Aromatherapist
Internationally Registered Aromatherapist
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