Let’s talk oils…

yellowflower

There really is so much to say about essential oils and so much information out there, along with a large number of suppliers.  It can be easy to become overwhelmed, which is why I started doing my own research and joined several groups that helped navigate the waters.  One of the most confusing things for me was getting around the information that the MLMs were handing out. Have they actually even trained in aromatherapy?  If so, they wouldn’t encourage their customers and sellers to use their expensive oils neat (undiluted) and to ingest them on a daily basis. If used properly, oils can last the average person quite a while.  I won’t go into safety now, but oils are not meant to be casually ingested and they are just as effective when diffused or diluted in carrier oil when used on the skin.  Plus, there is a risk of sensitization if oils are regularly used undiluted.  Anyway, I digress…

It was all of this information floating around that really made me decide to become a certified aromatherapist.  I feel like the information will be useful not only for our family, but hopefully for friends as well.  Obviously it would be great if I could make a living creating products for other people, but I’m going to just wait and see what happens with that. In the meantime, the knowledge is good to have and I hope I can help educate other people in the use of essential oils.

While I’m not a fan of MLMs and probably will never purchase oils from them just because I don’t like their business practices, there are many places to shop for oils that are reasonably priced and offer high quality products.  One thing to keep in mind is that there are MANY sellers of oils, but really only so many distillers, so it’s highly likely that many stores are selling oils from the same places. There is not just one company selling 100% therapeutic grade oil because all essential oils are technically therapeutic.  Granted, there are some companies that sell oils with additives and synthetic ingredients, and that is something you want to watch out for. The more open a company is about sharing where the oil is from, different testing reports, safety information, the more comfortable I feel with that company.

One of my favorite essential oil companies right now is Plant Therapy.  They not only have amazing customer service, but they have an informative blog, a helpful Facebook group, and a great Kid Safe line that we love.  I don’t remember how I stumbled across them, but I’m so happy I did.  Some other favorites include Aromatics International, Stillpoint Aromatics, and Mountain Rose Herbs to name a few. I’m still testing out other brands and companies as I go along since I also plan on making lotions, bath salts, massage oils, lip balms, and whatever else comes to mind as I get more into it and will need lots of supplies.

I’m so looking forward to sharing my knowledge with my friends and family, though, and more importantly the oils themselves.  Part of my certification includes case studies and a paper, so I’ll be needing guinea pigs in the near future who will be willing to let me mix up some special blends for them and officially be my first clients on this very fun journey.  I’m going to hopefully have a separate blog page soon strictly for oils as I hope for this to become a way of life, and think it will be useful to have the information in one place.

Essential Oils – Brief Intro

Lavender

Over the past few months I’ve been found a new and deep love of essential oils, and while I don’t know what prompted this interest, it’s been fascinating and my long-term goal is to become a certified aromatherapist. I’m sure many of you have seen a lot of links in which essential oils are mentioned whether it be for cleaning recipes or otherwise. Basically, essential oils (for those who don’t know) are highly concentrated essences of a plant. The essence of a plant is its smell, which comes from special little cells and glands within a plant and then is extracted to create the oil. Different plants have different healing properties and while some smell quite pleasant, others may be a tad stinky, depending on your preferences.

Because of this interest, I thought I’d share it, and a few of the common misconceptions out there at the same time.

Essential oils are wonderful and natural, so they are a nice alternative to modern medicine, but not all oils are safe for everyone.  Precaution is most important around young children and even pets. It is not even recommended to use oils on children under 2, and if so, they should be extremely diluted. Oils such as peppermint and eucalyptus are not even recommended under the ages of 5 and 10 because they can cause breathing problems (see link below). Many MLM companies do not give these precautions and even encourage using essential oils neat (undiluted) or by ingesting them. Please do not ingest essential oils unless you have been advised by a certified aromatherapist or physician to do so. Some oils can cause liver damage and other problems over time if ingested regularly. In fact, essential oils are most beneficial when inhaled or diffused – you don’t even need to apply them to the skin for them to work!

The best oils must be the most expensive. Definitely not true, although many MLM companies might have you think so.  Claims that their oils are pure and therapeutic/food-grade are unsubstantiated and there are some wonderful companies out there that sell quality oils at a fraction of the price.

I think everyone should do their own research when it comes to anything regarding your health and wellness, and that goes for remedies of any kind, whether it be holistic or over-the-counter.  While essential oils are natural and can be used in a very safe manner, there is a lot of misinformation out there, and I felt like I should make a PSA for anyone who happens upon my blog.  I plan on always using Essential Oils in a safe manner and plan to get properly educated so I can feel confident that I’m creating safe blends for others to use.  I’ve had a lot of enjoyment creating blends for my own family over the past few months such as a sleep-aid for Josh (which must work because not even the babies fussing have woken him up lately), a tummy lotion for Enzo (over the age of 2, there are a lot of kid friendly essential oils), and even an eczema blend for Phoebe using hydrosols.

Kids and Essential Oil Safety

Another link about Kids and Essential Oil Safety

Therapeutic Grade Oils

Hydrosols