Part 2 of Essential Oils
Depending on the scent we choose to breathe in, they can transport, calm, or energise, which makes them a powerful tool for engaging the mind and body. Using Forever Essential Oils for aromatherapy; the practice of using essential oils for therapeutic benefit, to relax or invigorate the mind and body is a great way to both reduce stress and anxiety, and promote calm for your overall wellbeing.
Forever Essential Oils are natural and made from 100% pure essential oils with no fillers or synthetic oils.
Forever Essential Oils Lemon is uplifting and energising.
Forever Essential Oils Peppermint is refreshing, stimulating and cooling.
Forever Essential Oils Lavender is soothing, calming and relaxing. While
Forever Essential Oils Defense is a fragrance blend based on oils from orange, clove, cinnamon, rosemary, frankincense, eucalyptus and juniper. This oil is warming, powerful and invigorating and often captures the scents of the winter holidays.
Forever Essential Oils can be used as a room fragrance through either a store bought or homemade diffuser, and we talked about various ways to diffuse a room or area with a store bought or DIY diffuser in part one in the blog on Forever’s Essential Oils.
Forever Essential Oils are also considered general consumer goods in Europe, which allows their promotion and use in many ways, some of which may also include direct or indirect contact with skin (bath/jacuzzi water, sauna steam, Hamman salts, etc.). So, another way to experience the benefit of aromatherapy is also by using a neutral carrier oil alongside your favourite Forever Essential Oil.
What Are Carrier Oils?
A carrier oil is a vegetable oil made from the fatty portion of a plant, usually from the seeds, nuts, or kernels. These oils are used as a base to dilute concentrated essential oils, which makes the essential oil safe for topical use. The carrier oil is used to help “carry” the essential oil onto the skin or diffuse it more evenly into a bath.
If essential oils are applied to the skin directly, they can cause irritation, burning, or redness, which is why we use carrier oils.
Carrier oils in themselves can also have amazing benefits on the skin. Different carrier oils bring their own amazing therapeutic properties based on the essential fatty acids and natural nutrients they contain, that might often get overlooked as most of the focus is on the essential oils being paired with them. These characteristics of each carrier oil influence their unique application and their shelf-life. Pairing your essential oils with the right carrier oils can be extremely beneficial in realising the full benefits of what you are trying to achieve.
That said, it’s important to note that just any oil from your kitchen might not serve as a good carrier oil, like butter and margarine which are best left in the fridge.
Carrier oils have a comedogenic rating, which indicates how likely any given oil is to clog your pores:
- Comedogenic Rating of 0: No risk; Will not clog your pores.
- Comedogenic Rating of 1: Low risk; Slight chance of clogging pores.
- Comedogenic Rating of 2: Moderately low risk; Will not clog pores for MOST people.
Anything over a rating of 3 will have a moderate to high risk of clogging the pores and should only be used on combination to dry skin.
Though there are many types of oils you can use for a carrier oil, here are a few carrier oils that you can find online to order or even in your local grocery shop:
Safflower Oil–comedogenic rating 0
This highly moisturising oil will leave your skin silky, and is great for all skin types. Safflower oil has a high linoleic acid content, which makes it effective at banishing skin impurities with its light and gentle consistency. It absorbs easily and doesn’t leave a greasy residue.
Argan Oil–comedogenic rating 0
Restore and repair your skin without clogging your pores with this versatile oil, suitable for most skin types. Produced from the argan tree, which grows in Morocco, Argan oil is full of essential fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals that moisturise, soften, and protect your skin. Pure argan oil will last for at least two years stored at room temperature and absorbs quickly into skin.
Olive Oil–comedogenic rating 2
Hydrate, nourish, and moisturise your skin with antioxidant rich olive oil, which is suitable for most skin types and has a delicate consistency. Olive oil absorbs easily, and is a light oil with a fruity aroma that is not overpowering, so it works well for blending most essential oils.
When buying olive oil there are countless brands available - make sure not to buy the very cheap brands. Unrefined extra virgin olive oil is the best as no heat or chemicals are used in the extraction process and it contains the highest concentration of oleic acid. Most people have this oil on hand.
Avocado Oil–comedogenic rating 2
Hydrate and renew your skin tone with this rich oil that is loaded with essential and trace minerals. This oil is best for drier and troubled skin. With a 6 to 8 months shelf-life, or 9 to 12 months in the refrigerator, it has a heavier, thick, and oily consistency but does absorb into skin.
Baobab Oil–comedogenic rating 2
This oil comes from “The Tree of Life” and will leave you with a supple and radiant complexion. Best for combination skin types, it has a low chance of clogging as it absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave an oil surface on the skin.
Coconut Oil–comedogenic rating 4
This oil leaves skin silky but also stimulates the production of collagen. It is also full of vitamin E, which protects the skin. Though it is great for dry skin types, it is not recommended for those with oily skin. When buying coconut oil look for unrefined coconut oil as that does not go through the process of chemical extraction. Also, you can buy coconut oil that is solid at room temperature and works well for making home-made balms, or fractionated coconut oil which is liquid at room temperature and has almost no aroma.
Apricot Kernel Oil–comedogenic rating 2
This oil is made from the seeds of apricots and is non-irritant and soothing to the skin. Best for combination to dry skin, it has a shelf life of 6 months to a year. Sensitive to heat and light, it needs to be stored in a cool and dark place (refrigerator). It absorbs into the skin well and is very light and moisturising.
Sunflower Seed Oil–comedogenic rating 0-2
Balance, moisturise, and fight the signs of ageing by using this oil on your skin. Known for its hydrating, softening, and skin regenerating properties, it will also prevent the loss of moisture. Most skin types respond great to this oil with a thin consistency, so it’s a great oil for beginners to use.
What to look for when buying a carrier oil
Always go for 100% pure, cold-pressed, unprocessed oils that are preferably labelled as ‘organic,’ ‘cold-pressed,’ and ‘Non-GMO’ - this will ensure you get the highest quality carrier oils that retain essential fatty acids, proteins, vitamins and minerals. Cold-pressed oils are not damaged by heat, whilst cheap carrier oils that may be treated with heat, could be highly refined and contain added additives which can do more harm than good. And if you see the word ‘fragrance’ it almost always means there are other additives plus a fragrance would also conflict with the aroma from your essential oil when added to the carrier oil.
Since carrier oils have a high fat content, some have a limited shelf life, so store your carrier oils in a cool, dark area to extend the shelf life. As a general rule, use 10-15 drops of essential oil per ounce of carrier oil or 6 to 8 drops per 15ml of the carrier oil.Needing to destress with too much tension, especially on your forehead? Add 1-2 drops of Forever’s Lavender Essential Oil to 8ml of a carrier oil with a low comedogenic rating like argan or safflower and place on your temples to help sooth tight muscles.
Or is it time for an invigorating bath? Add 6 drops of Forever’s Peppermint Essential Oil to 15ml of your preferred carrier oil and then add to warm water. Maybe add Forever’s Aloe Bio-Cellulose mask to hydrate the skin as you let the scent envelop as you breathe deeply and allow your muscles to destress and recharge from the day.