Essential oils are diluted in fatty oils, called carrier oils, for application. Direct application of essential oils, with few exceptions, is harmful to the skin. Unsaturated fatty oils support the healing process. They help the skin breathe, absorb vitamin D from sunlight and regulate temperature. Choose carrier oils that are cold pressed and unprocessed before expelling. The skin cannot utilize mineral oils. They are made from petroleum and block absorption. Choose oils for the skin that are edible. (Avoid canola oil.) These oils will enhance elasticity and soften the skin. They also provide nutrients, which can be utilized by the skin. Carrier oils are chemical compounds of glycerol and fatty acids.
Carrier oils are best used for massage as essential oil dilutions for the face and skin. They are safe for babies as well as adults. To date, most commercial baby oils and lotions contain mineral oil and are not healthy for massage or dilutions. Choose a carrier oil that best suits the area of application, for example, jojoba oil is best used for facial applications. It absorbs rapidly without an oily residue. Jojoba oil is beneficial for all skin types. However, for burns and scrapes, St. John’s Wort or aloe gel is best for healing. The shelf life of carrier oils is 8 to 10 months.
Sweet Almond Oil is the most popular and versatile carrier oil. It benefits every skin type, releasing the healing qualities of the essential oil or blend slowly through the skin. Almond oil is odorless and light in texture. As a cold pressed oil, it contains small amounts of vitamin A, E, thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B12) and pyridoxal phosphate (B6.)
Jojoba Oil is not oil but a liquid wax derived from the fruit of a Native American desert plant. Jojoba Oil has unique properties, of fat, fatty acid and alcohol, producing a natural emulsifier that does not oxidize or become rancid. As a cold pressed oil, jojoba’s anti-inflammatory properties heal many skin conditions. As an emulsifier, jojoba is beneficial in creams, shampoos and lotions. The Native Americans have used jojoba oil for eczema, psoriasis, acne and dry skin. It is easily absorbed. Jojoba contains vitamin E to soften the skin and provide PSPF 4 UV sun protection.
Grape seed Oil is an odorless oil used for oily skin. It blends well with other carrier oils for massage.
Coconut Oil is a rich solid massage oil that melts at 76 degrees. It is used to improve hydration and mature skin as a massage lotion and face cream. Melt the solid oil in a container by placing the container in a pan of hot water. As it softens, add essential oils and stir gently. refrigerate or allow to set at room temperature in a covered container prior to application.
Olive Oil has disinfectant properties ideal for healing wounds. Historically, it has been used to reduce rheumatic and arthritic complaints. Olive oil conditions dry hair and skin. The oil is heavy and odorous. To avoid smelling like a salad, combine olive oil with a light oil such as almond or jojoba oil in a 50 percent dilution.
Wheat Germ Oil is thick oil used for dry and aging skin. It is expressed from wheat kernels and is high in vitamins A, D, and E. The oil gets rancid when exposed to air. To prevent this, use 20 percent wheat germ oil and 80 percent vegetable oil, such as cold pressed sunflower, sweet almond or jojoba oil. (Do not use canola oil.) Refrigerate any extra wheat germ oil in a dark, glass bottle.
Some carrier oils are herbal infusions in sunflower or olive oil.
Comfrey (Symphytum officinalis) relieves arthritic pain, bruising and scrapes. (See Comfrey Yarrow Healing Cream.)
Aloe Vera Gel can also be used for essential oil dilution. Add 2 drops of grape seed oil to reduce oxidation. The gel helps heal burns and relieves eczema and psoriasis.
Mineral oil and canola oil (most canola is genetically modified and it is suggested to avoid this oil,) are not recommended as carrier oils and should be avoided in aromatherapy.
The following are examples of carrier oils used in essential oil dilutions.
Healing Oil for Dry, Damaged and Sensitive Skin
In 1 ounce of jojoba oil, add 4 drops of Rose Otto, 1 drop of Sandalwood and 7 drops of Lavender (Spike or Provence Lavender). Pour into a 1 ounce dark glass bottle and tightly cap. Allow to cure for 3 hours before applying to clean skin.
In 6 ounces of Sweet Almond Oil (or St. John’s Wort herbal infusion), add 6 drops of Lemongrass, 10 drops of Eucalyptus and 1 drop of Ginger essential oil. Pour into a 6 ounce dark glass bottle and tightly cap. Allow to cure for 3 hours before applying to sore or tight muscles. Use only on unbroken skin.
In 1 ounce of vegetable oil, add 6 drops of Peppermint and 4 drops of Lemongrass essential oils. Pour into a 1 ounce dark glass bottle and tightly cap. Allow to cure 3 hours. Apply 2 drops at the base of the throat and feel the energy rising.
To order these organically grown, steam distilled in glass, essential oils, please go to my website at www.aromahealthtexas.com or call 1-800-496-2125 or 817-293-5410.