Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Essentials of Oils

When I was younger, I always wanted to have a signature scent. One that everyone would know as mine. I asked for a then popular perfume as a birthday gift and when received, I put it on daily, spraying my wrists and clothes. I was content; I had found a scent for my own. Shortly after, I started getting headaches. One day when sitting in class, with my chin propped in the heels of my hands, I became acutely aware of the smell of my perfume and thought to myself that perhaps the headaches were related to the perfume. I did an experiment and stopped wearing my new found scent for a few days. Sure enough, the headaches disappeared. Hmm, allergic to my signature scent! How could this be? Needless to say, I was very disappointed.

It wasn't until years later after working in a health food store in North Carolina and learning from good friends that I was taught about essential oils, their wonderful signature scents as well as their aromatherapeutic properties! I also learned that many people have very strong reactions to the alcohol in perfumes or the large amounts of chemicals in other lotions and fragrances.

Basically, there are numerous essential oils that have amazing fragrances and can be mixed with a base and used just like perfume - and they don't cause me headaches! There are also blends of them already pre-made, just check out your local health food store.

I also learned about the benefit of using body oil instead of lotion. I used to think all body oil was like baby oil - and if you've ever put that on your body, you know how slimy and oily it makes you feel. I really didn't want that but I wanted something that was going to hydrate my skin in a way that lotion just wasn't. Many people will use Almond, Olive, Sesame or Sunflower Oil as the base for creating their own scented body oil - instead of buying a $30 bottle from some of those "Body Shops." Making these oils are easy and fun and you can create one just for your own needs.

A massage-therapist friend of mine likes to use sunflower oil for her personal body oil as it dries most quickly so there is less possibility of it getting on clothes. I used to use almond oil but just recently switched to sunflower oil and have found that I also prefer it. I buy Spectrum brand refined, organic Sunflower Oil from the cooking oil section of any health food store.

Below is a recipe I use for creating. I STRONGLY recommend that you read up on the properties of any and all essential oils you opt to put into your concoction so that you know what you're getting into (see links at the end of this post and do your own research!). Also, my motto is less is more; first try out a smaller quantity of an essential oil and then increase if you do not smell it once mixed with your base oil.

My favorites:
Lavender Oil *- Relaxing, Calming
Grapefruit Oil *- Uplifting
Peppermint Oil *- Stimulating
Eucalyptus Oil *- Refreshing

Jyoti's Oil Recipe:

What's in it:
  • 12 - 15 ounces base oil (Organic Sunflower Oil)
  • 8 - 12 drops Lavender Oil
  • 5 - 12 drips Grapefruit Oil
  • 4 ounces lotion of your choice (I like Kiss My Face Lavender or Mountain Ocean Skin Trip Coconut Lotion)
  • You can add peppermint (2-4 drops) or Eucalyptus (2-4 drops) but bear in mind that they will add a cooling and stimulating effect. I have decided to not use them much in my whole body oils but have made separate oils with them for my feet only and use sparingly.
How's it done:
  • Pour your base oil into either a pump bottle or a leak proof squeeze bottle of your choice. It is recommended to use a dark, glass bottle if you can.
  • Add the number of drops of the oils of your choice.
  • Add the number of ounces of the lotion of your choice (optional)
  • Shake the concoction up and lube yourself up!
Enjoy creating your own scents tailored to your own wants and needs, just be sure to thoroughly read up on the properties for each oil before using. I actually began to find peppermint to be too cooling and stimulating for me to use after using it for a long time. Have fun!

I also found the following sites helpful and informative:

Information on oil properties:
Recipes and general information:
Properties and general information:
*The links in this post are not intended to urge readers to purchase these particular brands or from these specific sites but are more for reference and informational purposes.

3 comments:

Jyoti Kaneria said...

My aunt just reminded me that essential oils should NEVER be put directly on your skin - they should always be added to a base and then put on our skin!

Kapil & Mira said...

This is awesome!! I've been looking to get into this for awhile, just didn't know where to start, and you have shown me where and how to begin! I love this!!!! We use lavender scented lotions and bubblebaths on Elaan all the time, why not for us!? I'm even thinking about turning this into a little party idea...having some girls over and play around and everyone make their own scents :-) You have definitely inspired me! I had a question-- what about scents for your home? Like burning oils instead of candles to have the house smell relaxing like a spa...? Any ideas...? I was reading on a mom blog and a lot of the moms were talking about a product called Scentsy but I liked what one mom said and she was making her own scents from things in her cabinet like vanilla, and burning it like an oil...

Jyoti Kaneria said...

Hey Mira, I'm sending you a longer email right now, but I'm sooo happy this has inspired you. So, I have used an essential oil diffuser in the past to freshen the scent up in the house along with making a spray with the same essential oils that I put in my body oil but adding them to water instead and just spray as needed. Ok, i'm gonna send you my email too...