Best carrier oils (16)

Different carrier oils have different properties and use. The carrier oil chosen for aromatherapy treatment will depend on the desired outcome.

Coconut oil

People in the tropics have been using coconut oil as a moisturizer for centuries. Recently, the oil has also been shown to have antimicrobial properties. This is largely due to its high lauric acid content, which is the main fatty acid in coconut oil.
People with extremely dry and flaky skin must welcome coconut oil to their lives. This oil supplies sebum to the skin. As a result, the skin remains hydrated, moisturized, and free of acne-causing bacteria and germs.
Coconut oil can also be combined with another carrier in winter since it is prone to solidifying real quickly.
Coconut oil is high in antioxidants and Vitamin E. But, the thick, unrefined coconut oil you find at the grocery store is not as useful for aromatherapy purposes because it doesn’t readily absorb into the skin.

Black cumin seed oil

Black cumin seed oil is anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antifungal, and is thought to be helpful in promoting the healing of wounds and burns.
This oil is golden brown and has a mild, earthy, woody smell that can be slightly spicy or peppery. Black cumin seed oil also absorbs into the skin quickly.

Jojoba oil

Jojoba oil, which is really a wax, is commonly used in massage. Due to its natural anti-inflammatory properties, it might help in the treatment of mild acne.
In aromatherapy, it absorbs well and could be a good choice for those with oily or acne-prone skin.
Jojoba oil is very gentle on skin and rarely causes any allergic reactions.
Jojoba oil is yellow and has a distinct but pleasant smell.

Rose hip oil

Rose hip oil is rich in essential fatty acids, including alpha-linolenic acid. It has been shown to have antioxidative and anti-inflammatory effects and is used to treat various skin conditions.

Rose hip oil is a natural source of vitamin C and vitamin E.

Grapeseed oil

Grapeseed oil is considered to be an all-purpose oil that is commonly used in aromatherapy, from massage to skin care. It has a light aroma that is slightly sweet and nutty, and it is virtually clear in color. It leaves a glossy film on the skin.

This oil is made from the pressings of the seeds from particular grape varieties. It is high in linoleic acid and is very moisturizing, especially for delicate skin. You’ll often see it listed on the ingredients list of many cosmetics. Its aroma is light and sweet, and it is clear in color. It can be a good carrier oil to use for occasional blemishes.

Argan Oil

Argan oil has high healing properties. It takes care of scars, stretch marks and heals the damage caused by UV rays and inflammation. This oil is also very soothing and gentle and can be used to fight acne, defy wrinkles and to repair damaged hair and boost its growth.

Olive Oil

Though it can be heavy, oily, and have a stronger odor when compared to the others, the benefit of olive oil is that it is high in both vitamins and minerals. Depending on the quantity and how diluted you need the essential oil to be, olive oil can overpower the scent.

Avocado Oil

Avocado has countless health benefits and its oil carries the same trait when it comes to skin. Avocado oil is one of the most luxurious oils with a thick texture. This carrier oil contains palmitoleic acid as well as oleic and linoleic fatty acids, and actively fights aging signs on the skin.

This oil is also great for people who suffer from inflammation, redness, and allergies on their skin. To balance out its thicker consistency, it can be combined with almond oil for best results.

Sweet Almond Oil

Almond oil is rich in protein and is heavier in texture, so people with extremely dry and sensitive skin will get their moisture from the application of almond oil. When mixed with rose petals, almond oil becomes one of the best body oils and moisturizes every pore.
Almond oil also has a very pleasant smell.

Evening primrose oil

The light and sweet-smelling evening primrose oil has been used in aromatherapy and skin care for many years. It is thought to be useful in many skin conditions, including eczema.

It is usually expensive, and aromatherapists tend to blend it with other carrier oils. It has a high essential fatty acid content, meaning that it deteriorates and goes rancid quite quickly.

What is a carrier oil? (15)

If applied to the skin directly, essential oils can cause reactions, such as severe irritation, redness or burning.

Carrier oils are vegetable oils with little-to-no scent that are used to dilute essential oils. They are not volatile like essential oils, and are shelf-stable. In carrying essential oils into your skin, carrier oils do dilute the potency of the oil. However, this does not mean that the oil is any less effective. Rather, it means that essential oils better absorb into your skin because it does not evaporate as quickly.
Dilution is also necessary for certain “hot” essential oils, and always a good idea when using any oils with children or for those with sensitive skin. When in doubt, always dilute.

To be used in aromatherapy, it is recommended that the carrier oil is obtained through cold pressing. In this process, the oil is extracted by crushing the plants. Users claim that the fragile nutrients in the oil can be damaged if they are extracted with heat.

While some are odorless, most carrier oils have a faint smell that is sweet and nutty. Unlike essential oils, they do not evaporate.

Reiki to Remove Energy Blocks

Energy blocks can be due to many factors and can start anywhere from pre-birth all the way through one’s life.  In fact, there is evidence that we can bring blockages in to this life from our ancestral lineage. Throughout life, blockages can accumulate, often times without our conscious awareness.  They can cause anywhere from subtle to detrimental effects on our physical, mental and emotional bodies. Clearing energy blocks is fundamental to triggering healing on a quantum level.

This distant Reiki session is intended to clear energy blocks.

Take a comfortable position laying or sitting with your eyes closed. Open yourself up to receive the Reiki session by saying silently “I take this Reiki session from Iris here and now for my highest good”. 

Play this healing session as often as you need, there are no boundaries to Reiki energy, it will work anytime, anywhere.

PLEASE NOTE:

Reiki healing does not take the place of conventional medicine. It does not replace the advice of a qualified medical practitioner. Always consult a GP for an acute or infectious condition, and problems of an urgent nature. Also continue with your prescribed medication.

If you need your personal Distant Reiki Session BOOK HERE

How are essential oils adulterated? (14)

Essential oils are not cheap to make. Pure essential oils are expensive, labor intensive, and subject to all kinds of hard work. They are pricey, as any pure product, carefully grown and extracted should be. In order to make essential oils less costly, some companies will “extend” essential oils. That means, they will stretch them by diluting them in some way.

Oils can be adulterated in several ways during the production process, from diluting with cooking oils to adding synthetic chemicals. The important thing to know is that adulteration is always intentional—you cannot accidentally adulterate an oil.

Natural Isolates
This means that a naturally-occurring chemical constituent is added to the essential oil. One example is the chemical constituent alpha-pinene, a primary constituent in Frankincense. Alpha-pinene can be taken from trees used in the paper industry and added to Frankincense essential oil.

Adding Other Oils
Common essential oils can be added to rarer or more expensive oils. Cassia, for instance, is similar to Cinnamon oil, but much less expensive. It can be added to Cinnamon essential oil and not be easily detected because the aromas and chemistry are similar. The same can be done with Lemongrass and Melissa.

Dilution
In order to make a small amount of essential oil larger, it can be diluted using carrier or cooking oils such as olive, coconut, or canola. This dilution lessens the potency and effectiveness of the oil.

Synthetic
Many of the chemical compounds found in essential oils can be synthesized in a lab. Typically, these synthetic constituents are created out of petro-chemicals. Lavender can be produced without using a Lavender plant at all, but by synthesizing linalool and linalyl acetate from petroleum-based products.

Extended with Alcohol
Another common way to extend an essential oil, and therein making it cheaper, is by adding alcohol to the EO. Ethyl Alcohol is a common substance added to EO to extend them. It’s very hard to detect this by smell, but it is possible.

In many cases, the added substance is inferior or even harmful. Adulterations not only have the potential to alter the chemical and physical properties of an oil, but they can decrease the efficacy of the oil, to produce an allergic reaction, irritation or toxic side effects.

How to Store Essential Oils? (13)

An essential oil can’t stay fresh without proper storage. It does not react well to changes in temperature, and since you’ve spent a considerable amount of money in it, you might as well look after it properly. Otherwise, you’ll lose its therapeutic benefits. Luckily, storage solutions for an essential oil are easy.

BOTTLING
Since ultra-violet light affects the composition of the essential oil, make sure that you put it on a dark-colored glass. Dark amber is the most common shade of glass. However, you can also choose one that is violet, green, or blue. They offer the same level of protection.

Putting your essential oil on a dark glass does not mean you can expose it directly to the sun. While the glass helps screen the UV light, natural heat will still speed up the oxidation process. So, be sure to still keep it some place dark and cool.

Cap the glass tightly so as not to expose it to oxygen. If not, some of the chemicals will evaporate, especially if the oil is not 100% pure.

COOLING
Essential oils are prone to oxidation under heat and temperature variations – especially citrus oils. The same is true for massage oils and carrier oils. To avoid this, you can store them in your refrigerator. Be careful not to set the temperature too cold, about 5 to 10 degrees Celsius is enough. In fact, it’s much better than storing your oils on the kitchen’s window ledge.

Citrus essential oils will not change under the prescribed temperature; however, Aniseed, Rose Otto, Fennel, and Star Anise may solidify. So, before you use any of them, allow them to sit for a few hours. This will return them to their normal form. For the Rose Otto, you can just hold it in your hands for a few minutes. Never put the oils under the sun in order to hasten the process. Let it the natural wax dissolve without exposing it to UV light.

In summer, when it’s especially hot, essential oils can be particularly vulnerable. Store them in the fridge and take them out about 12 hours before you use them. This way, they can adjust to the room temperature naturally. Give it a quick shake to ensure that the waxy particles are completely dissolved.

BOXING
If you don’t have any space in your fridge, use a storage box instead. It’s good enough to keep some types of oil. You just have to keep in a place that has the least or no changes in temperature. You also have to remember that some oils are moderately volatile, so they will evaporate quickly if you don’t cap it tightly. Also, don’t leave them lying around after you use them. Put them back in the box.

STORING
Essential oils are flammable. Thus, do not leave them near fires, candles, cookers, or any other sources of ignition. Don’t forget to keep them away from children. The essential oil is not something they can play with.

Never keep undiluted oils into plastic bottles. Why? Most oils will eat into the material and start degrading the plastics. Diluted oils like lotions and massage oils might be stored in plastic since the concentration of essential oils is lowered through the mixture with the other components.

Do Essential Oils Expire? (12)

Essential oils are a product of nature. Every natural product has a shelf life. They’re natural, liquid chemicals and their chemistry can get altered under certain conditions.

As soon as you open a new bottle or container of essential oils and it comes into contact with oxygen, a process called oxidation begins. The oxidation process involves the changes of oxygen bonds between cells into carbon bonds.

When an oil comes into contact with oxygen, light, and heat, its composition begins to change. Over time, it starts to lose its strength and effectiveness. This is why most essential oils are sold in amber-colored bottles — the darker glass provides better protection against ultraviolet light.

Does this mean that essential oils spoil or “go bad?”

Essential oils don’t spoil like food does, but they do change over time. Because it’s hard to determine what the oils have changed into, it’s also hard to determine whether or not they’re safe to use.

The bottom line is, don’t inhale expired essential oils or use them on your skin after they have expired.

Essential Oil Skin Testing (11)

Some essential oils can cause irritation. Even essential oils that have been actively promoted as being remarkably safe to use.

Prior to using an essential oil for the first time, skin patch testing is often recommended as a method of determining if you have an existing sensitivity/irritation to the natural constituents present in a particular essential oil. 

There are some simple rules to follow when evaluating a scent:

• Do not place your nose right up to the open tester and sniff. The undiluted oil is incredibly strong and can give you a headache. Instead, hold the lid at least five inches from your nose and gently sniff.

• Never use essential oils undiluted on the skin.

• Avoid using essential oils that are hazardous and that are known to be of higher risk in causing dermal irritation.

• Place 1-2 drops of a diluted skin safe essential oil on your inner forearm or back as the most appropriate regions for testing.

• Apply a bandage. Do not get this area wet during the test.

• If you feel the onset of any irritation or if any reaction occurs, immediately remove the bandage and carefully wash the area with mild soap and water.

• If no irritation occurs after 48 hours, the essential oil,  should be safe for you to use diluted on your skin.

• Also keep in mind that if you are allergic to a particular plant, you are more likely to be allergic to that botanical’s essential oil.

• When comparing a variety of oils, take a break in between scents. Sniffing oils too closely together can overwhelm the senses and reduce your ability to discern the fragrant notes.

How to Choose the Right Essential Oil ? (10)

There are a number of important factors to keep in mind when you buy essential oils.

• Watch out for words such as “fragrance oil,” “nature identical oil,” or “perfume oil.” These words indicate that what you see is not a pure, single essential oil.

Essential oils are concentrated oils distilled from plants. They not only smell great, but they also contain the beneficial chemical compounds of the specific plant they’re derived from. Fragrance oils are synthetic, and though they may smell good, they do not have any beneficial natural compounds. They’re less expensive to produce because they’re diluted with artificial substances.

• Avoid essential oils that have been diluted with vegetable oil. To test this, place a couple of drops on a piece of paper. If the drop leaves an oily ring, it likely contains vegetable oil.

• High quality essential oils list the Latin name of the plant species they’re derived from. For example, a bottle of lavender essential oil could be distilled from Lavandula Angustifolia, or English Lavender. If an oil doesn’t list the Latin name, it’s hard to know exactly what you’re really getting.

• Verify the source. If the label doesn’t outright mention country of origin, you might see a “lot#,” which you can then look up. If you’re buying from a website, it should state where the oil is from on the product page, even if the individual bottles may not (simply because labels can be quite small).

• Avoid buying essential oils from a company that prices all of its oils the same or an oil that is unusually low-priced. The process of extraction can vary enormously from one plant to the next.

• Pricing practices like this suggest that the oils are either synthetic, contain little of the essential oil they claim to have, or are of low quality.

• Many oils are labeled as “Therapeutic Grade.” But it’s important to note that this isn’t a term that’s regulated by the FDA, or any other evaluating body. So while many reputable companies label their oils as “therapeutic grade” to denote purity, any company can put that on any bottle of oil without having to meet any specific standards of quality. A “Therapeutic Grade” label is not necessarily a bad thing, but don’t overestimate its meaning or let it fool you.

• Essential oils should be sold in a tightly sealed dark amber or dark blue glass bottles. Clear glass allows unfiltered light to enter and can cause the oil to spoil.

• Never buy pure essential oils in plastic bottles, since the oils can dissolve plastic and contaminate the product. 

• Always buy less rather than more. A 10-milliliter bottle will likely last months even with frequent use. Buying too much can lead to spoilage and waste.