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Dilution and essential oils.

Dilution of essential oils is the most important thing to learn in aromatherapy.

It is aromatherapy 101 that teaches dilution.  Most of the time, that is an easy equation to figure out:

5-6 drops per 30 ml of carrier. That should be the end of my blog…but it is not.

When I started working with essential oils, I had a ton of questions….What about the oils that we must use in low dilution? Say a .07%? How do we figure that out?

Dilution of essential oils is sometimes tricky, what size bottle, jar or tin are we using? Did we double or halve the recipe?

I do not want to make 30 ml of anything, just a 10 ml rollerball…. how much essential oil is that?
Or a 5 ml bottle—I use those a lot.

Uses for essential oils are in the chart below, note the dilution rate for specific issues.

Easy to use dilution tables for various sizes of bottles.

DilutionUsed for
1%Face, children, pregnant women, immune compromised
2%



3%
Daily use, massage oils, larger area of body



Specific injury of muscle, tendon or bone
4%Local area such as chest congestion
5% or above Severe pain, muscle cramps, bruising
DilutionBottle sizeDrops of stock blend
1%5 ml1 drop
2%5 ml2 drops
3%5 ml3 drops
4%5 ml4 drops
5%5 ml5 drops
10%5 ml10 drops
Best to use a stock blend then add to a carrier oil

30 ml= approximately 2 Tablespoons (29.57 ml)

DilutionBottle SizeDrops of essential oil
.50%10 ml1 drop
1%10 ml2 drops
2%10 ml4 drops
3%10 ml6 drops
4%10 ml8 drops
5%10 ml10 drops
10%10 ml20 drops
DilutionBottle SizeDrops of essential oil
1%30 ml5-6 drops
2%30 ml10-12 drops
3%30 ml15-18 drops
4%30 ml20-24 drops
5%30 ml25-30 drops
30 ml= approximately 2 Tablespoons (29.57 ml)

Do your research on oils that have dermal restrictions, such as Phenols or Aldehydes.

Using these dilutions is important in helping to modulate various issues that may arise.
Whether it is a pulled muscle that needs a massage oil or a cough that just won’t go away. The dilution that you use will help get the results that you are looking for, all with safety in mind.

Happy blending,
Crystal

We fight too many battles that don’t matter. If a battle is not between you and your destiny, it’s a distraction. It’s the enemy trying to lure you off course when a new level is waiting for you. You have to learn to let things go.

Luke 6:29
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Olfaction made simple-using inhalers and diffusers in aromatherapy

How does the inhalation of essential oils work in the body?

What is the science behind how and why it works?

Aromatherapy is about our sense of smell or olfaction.  Human behavior is influenced by smell.  The smell of baking bread or rotisserie chicken in a grocery store.  The floral scents of roses and lavender, the citrus of oranges, lemons and limes, the smell of conifers and pines.

We breathe in the essential oils (which are molecules), our nose has cilia which transports these molecules up to our sensory nerves called the olfactory nerve. This olfactory nerve enters the skull, connects to the limbic system and the olfactory cortex.

Well, that’s great but I just want to use my diffuser!

Let’s talk about diffusers and inhalers.

The easiest way to start with aromatherapy and essential oils is to use an inhaler.

Purchasing inhalers is easy; your favorite essential oil supplier or Amazon sell them.  They are cheap, and you can reuse them for your own personal use. In the beginning of my aromatherapy journey, I started with these 3 inhalers: one with ginger, one with lavender, and one with peppermint.   I used antacids or acid reducing medications…you know that purple pill.  My use of OTC medications has all but ceased except on a rare occasion, then I will use a chewable antacid.  Peppermint is great for keeping alert while driving. One time I sprayed peppermint oil in my eye, but that story is for another day! The point is–we all start somewhere…and safety is important. 

Inhalers have 4 parts, the wick, the tube, the cover and the cap.

To make an inhaler:  place the cotton wick in a bowl.  For an adult add 10-15 drops of essential oil to the bowl. (for children, use 7-8 drops of kid safe oils: lavender, sweet orange, cedarwood, etc).  Move the wick around with a clean tweezers to soak up the oil.  Place the wick in the tube of the inhaler-the part with the holes. Put on the cap, snapping it tightly and put the tube in the case, twisting closed. Label the inhaler: For example: Ginger for my belly, Peppermint to keep me awake; Lavender for relaxing and many more.

Like I said, I reuse my inhalers by disinfecting the inhaler parts, and use a new wick every so often.  I keep them in an essential oil bag in my purse when I travel. Yay TSA!

I just made an inhaler for a nagging headache of almost equal drops (total 12) of frankincense, sweet basil and spike lavender. Surely helped ease that!

What about a diffuser?

Using the diffuser is just as easy!  Read the manufacturer directions on how many drops to use in the diffuser as they come in all different sizes.

The Aromahead Institute ACP course, taught to diffuse 30 minutes with the diffuser on, then 30 minutes off for safety reasons.  For infants, it is recommended to diffuse and hour before having the child in the space, such as putting them to bed.  Always have an escape route for your pets, remember that they might not like or be sensitive to the smells you are diffusing!

Happy Blending,

Crystal.

Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.

Proverbs 16:3
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Checking the distillation dates of essential oils.

Why is it so important to check the distillation date from the manufacturer?

Is that date even listed?

Well, lesson learned. I recently was going through all my essential oils.

I have accumulated a lot from the aromatherapy certification program I had enrolled in. There was a supply list of all the oils to buy for the course, so I did!

After all, who does not want to get involved in the course and use the oils, smell the oils, make the blends, inhalers, and lotions?

All this brings me to the dating of the batches and the distillation date.

When you buy the oil, that is not the date when it expires. When it expires is the distillation date.


Some of my oils were 2 years old when I bought them!

One oil, fennel, was 3 years old!

No offense, but I have expired sweet marjoram, fennel, laurel leaf and only 4 months to use the orange oil. The orange oil is a favorite, but cleaning with fennel? Laurel leaf? Don’t think so…. ☹

Let’s look at a few examples:

  • Anise (Pimpinella anisum) With a batch number as: ANS 102. This was distilled in 9/2017. I bought it on 10/13/2019. The shelf life is 5 yrs, which means it expires in 2022.
  • Cinnamon leaf (Cinnamonum seylanicum) With a batch number as: CIL 105. This was distilled in 3/2018. I bought it in 4/2020. The shelf life is 4 yrs, which means it expires in 2022.
  • Fennel sweet (Foeniculum vulgare) With a batch number as: FEN 105. This was distilled in 7/2016. I bought it in 10/12/2019. The shelf life is 4 yrs, this oil expired in 2020.
  • Laurel leaf (Laurus nobilis) With a batch number as: LLF 111. This was distilled in 9/2017. I bought it in 7/14/2019. The shelf life is 3 yrs, this oil expired in 2020.
  • Marjoram sweet (Origanum margorana) With a batch number as: SWM 113. This was distilled in 7/2017. I bought it in 7/19/2019. The shelf life is 4 yrs, this oil has expired in July 2021.

So if you look at the chart, you will see that the distilled date is 2 to 3 years before the date I bought the oil. The total life span for my use could only be 1 year! and when you are buying oils for a course, that’s a lot of money and waste.

Image by OpenIcons from Pixabay


What if I don’t know when my oils expire? How do I tell how long they are good?

I did find out from the seller of my oils that most oils are distilled once a year–some even less. I guess that is the case and point with Anise or the fennel oil.

The list below helps judge, but beware that your distilled date could be years earlier.

1-2 years Most citrus oils; orange, lime, lemon, grapefruit.

3-4 years Conifer oils; pines, firs, spruces. Bergamot, black pepper, Citronella, cypress, eucalyptus, laurel leaf, juniper berry, geranium.

5-8 years Lavender, rose, carrot seed, helichrysum, vetiver, patchouli, sandalwood.

I hope my mistakes help someone else. I listened to a NAHA webinar from Penny Price a while back.  she said: “Your box should have no more than 30 oils, learn to use them!”

Before clicking the BUY NOW button, check the DISTILLATION DATE!

It will save you aggravation.

What I am going to do with an outdated fennel and laurel leaf oil are beyond me. I thought that I had 2 years left on these oils. In fact, I thought I had 2 or three years left to use all these oils.

I am posting this as a precaution. It is so important that we safely and sustainably use essential oils. I feel that I have wasted precious product. This year my sweet marjoram and nutmeg expired in July. The orange oil will expire in September, with only 4 months of dating.

I think the company ought to put a disclaimer on the page that has short, dated oils.

Happy Blending,

Crystal