The Absolute Beginner's Guide to Using Essential Oils
Did you know that human beings have been using essential oils for centuries? We did not always think of them for their appealing scents alone, and in fact considered them more medicinally than anything else. This makes sense when you learn that essential oils are derived from plants and trees, and can be made from flowers, leaves, bark, seeds, resins, and even peels and fruits. In fact, a formal definition of them is that there are "concentrated hydrophobic liquid containing volatile aroma compounds".
And that word "volatile" is important as you begin to learn about using essential oils. Why? Because you will rarely ever (most likely never) use them undiluted. Thus, rule one of essential oils is "a little goes a long way", so always use a light hand whenever blending or using them in any way.
Why Use Them
So, if they are volatile and more medicinal than anything else, why should we be using them? They are absolutely amazing at offering support for such conditions as skin issues, pain and/or inflammation, headache, nausea, congestion, bacterial issues, immune support, overcoming viruses, killing off fungus and more. The key is that you must know which oils to use and in which proportions.
As one expert said, "when certain oils are blended with the correct knowledge based on therapeutic properties and chemical families, the blends can be even more powerful than a single oil." So, you will want to dedicate a lot of time to reading up on the uses of essential oils to treat any conditions you wish to address, or just reading about them in general as they are pretty fascinating.
Which to Use
We cannot possibly begin to address which are the best or most important to have on hand. What we can say about the question of which essential oils to use can be summed up in a very brief statement. Quite simply: Use the best you can find.
The success or failure of your essential oils regimen may often depend not only on which oils and blends you use, but the overall quality of those oils. As the condensed essences of plants and plant parts, they are a reflection of the health of the plant. Thus, you want to know where those oils came from, the quality of the plants, how they were grown and how that oil was tested for quality and safety.
How to Use Them?
One thing is certain, you can use essential oils in ways you may not yet have realized. While many people focus on using them in diffusers (to scent a room or for medicinal value), as bath or massage oils, or as simple inhalations, you can also use them for:
- Natural cleaning and cleansing
- Repelling insects
- Deodorizing shoes and athletic gear
- Natural food additives
- Improving your laundry results
- Cleaning the carpet of stains
- Natural sun screen
- Scrubbing the bathtub
- Reducing odors in garbage cans
- Cleaning produce
- Shampoo or body products
The list just goes on and on from here, and it just makes sense for you to learn more about essential oils and begin using them right away.