Essential Oils 101
I want to go over a question that I actually don’t get asked regularly but that I would like to address because I feel like it’s good info to know when there are many misconceptions out there.
Essential oils have a weird taboo attached to them, for some reason people get really skeptical when they hear the term. As I like to do with misconceptions and stigmas, I want to break it down and explain exactly what they are and why they are something we should all be utilizing in our daily lives.
What are Essential Oils?
Think of essential oils as plant extracts, nice little conveniently packaged bottles of pure plant juice for use in your daily life. Plants were put on this earth to work with our bodies, they have been used for centuries by many different cultures for their potent healing and health benefits, both mental and physical, I say we embrace that!
By definition, essential oils are the vital (and aromatic) chemical compounds that make up a plant. You can think of the oil as a plant’s lifeblood, or “immune system” — these chemical compounds and constituents are essential to the life, health, protection and survival of the plant.
Essential oils are typically extracted from the stems, leaves and/or flower petals of the plant through careful steam distillation that ensures all the important, therapeutic, and health-giving constituents of the plant remain intact.
These pure plant essences or “lifeblood” of plants contain the plant’s own immunity, hormones, and scents. When you pick a rose and break off the stem, you’ll notice there is a bit of watery substance. This is the source that the pure essential oils are derived from. Plants were intelligently created to work with and benefit every system in our bodies.
Not All Essential Oils are Created Equally
We actually use essential oils a lot in every day life. They are used to flavor foods and can be found in things like toothpaste and mouthwash to give it that minty kick. Oils are also in perfumes and skin care products. All while essential oils are found in many products we use regularly, it is important to note that not all essential oils are created equally.
Oils found in food and cosmetics are typically heavily adulterated or even completely synthetic. Your body processes these as a toxin therefore it becomes harder to break down or can be stored in fat cells. These types of synthetic fragrances work against your body and should be avoided at all costs.
Young Living Essential Oils are therapeutic grade and actually pure which gives them the ability to work with your body. Within 22 seconds of applying the oils, the molecules have reached our brain. Within 2 minutes the molecules can be found in our bloodstream and within 20 minutes of applying oils they can be found in every cell of our body–how cool is that?!
But also it should make you think about what else (possible toxins) you’re putting on your body / near your body that could be absorbed in this way as well.
Seed to Seal Promise: Purity Matters
It is a highly temperamental process to distill oils from plants and it is something that cannot be rushed. Young Living is a part of the entire process from “Seed to Seal”. They make sure that the soil the crops are planted in have never been touched with pesticides or herbicides so that toxins are never present in the plants or in the oils. Young Living oversees each step ensuring that the plants are grown according to strict quality standards, that the plants are harvested at the exact right moment for peak freshness, that the correct temperature is used for the correct amount of time so that every constituent is intact through the distillation process. They go above and beyond to guarantee that every drop of oil is what we call “beyond organic.”
When I chose to grab Young Living oils, this, these standards right here, was what got me. With al the research h Idid there was just no comparison! I love my plant juice and the ways they’ve impacted my life are deep, I can’t wait to hear you story!
How to Use Essential Oils
Did you know there is actually more ways than one to use essential oils? Sure one of the best parts about them is to get our homes smelling amazing with the diffuser, but in addition to aromatic use you can also use some topically and there are even a few (Young Living ONLY) oils that are safe to ingest.
- diffuse essential oils
- smell from bottle
- scent tent: place oils in cupped hands, place over mouth and nose and inhale
- Apply oils in desired/directed areas including neck, chest, wrists, behind ears, spine, bottoms of feet, ankles, top of head etc. the oils will absorb into your bloodstream via your skin.
- Dilute with carrier oil as needed
Ingestion (FDA-approved Vitality labeled Young Living oils ONLY)
- Add 1-2 drops to a glass of water
- Use herbaceous ones in cooking and baking
- Flavor coffee grinds
- 1-2 drops under tongue
- Add blends to vegetable capsule and swallow
Essential Oil Safety and Dilution Guidelines
Though essential oils are made from naturally-occurring plant compounds they are still extremely potent and should be used according to a few basic rules and guidelines. Here are a few safety tips to follow when using essential oils:
- Never put essential oils directly into your eyes, nose or ears. If you get essential oil in your eye it will burn, do not splash water, instead rub a carrier oil around your eye to dilute and remove the essential oil.
- Citrus oils can increase skin photosensitivity, avoid topical use if you will be out in the sun.
- Always check specific safety guidelines before using essential oils on pregnant moms, breastfeeding moms, infants, kids and animals. Some should be avoided all together while some just need a bit more dilution. Two great resources for this information are the books Gentle Babies, by Debra Raybern, and the Essential Oils Desk Reference by Life Sciences Publishing. They also have an Animal Desk Reference book available!
- Always check any contraindications to medications if you are currently on any and want to start using essential oils!
- See the chart below. For infants and babies up to 2 years generally you will use the 1-2% dilution ratio, for children ages 2-4 use the 3% ratio and for ages 5-11 the 5% ratio. 12 years and older generally can use full labeled concentration.
Suggestions made on this website are specific to Young Living and should not be used with any other essential oils. Statements made here have not been evaluated by the FDA. This information and these products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Anyone suffering from disease or injury should consult a physician. If you are currently taking medication, please do not stop taking it. We do not take the place of your health care professional. Seek your licensed healthcare professional about your medications and possible interactions with what you are currently taking.