I have had a curiosity about essential oils for quite a while. A few months ago, I went to a workshop to learn more and was fascinated to learn about the uses and properties of these substances. Shortly thereafter, I met Darla Tegtmeier, a multi-talented healer and practitioner. I asked her to write a piece for my readers about essential oils so that you too can satisfy your curiosity and determine if this is something you want to research further.
Essential oils have taken a front and center seat in the holistic approach to health and wellness. This is a good thing, but just because they are all natural doesn’t mean that they are safe for you, your family or your pets. You can do great harm if you are not aware of what precautions to take. Let’s clear some of the confusion that has been widely circulated, touted and in some cases emphatically proclaimed, and look at the facts.
First, there is no established rating or grading system for essential oils. All ratings or gradings are for marketing purposes only and just another way for a company to claim, “We sell the best essential oils on the market.” To label an oil as therapeutic grade just sounds better.
Certified Pure Essential oils in also just a marketing strategy by a multi-level marketing company. It is not a certification from the FDA or any other governing body. ISO (International Organization for Standardization) and AFNOR (Association Franchise de Normalization) don’t set standards for differentiating the quality of essential oils either.
There is a huge range of prices in the cost of essential oils: Does more expensive mean better quality? Yes and no.
There are a few well known multi- level marketing companies that charge a premium price for their oils. I do not recommend nor oppose any of them. A multi-level marketing company is just that, and every level needs to get a percentage of the price paid for the product. If you feel comfortable with a specific company, then use them. Just do your research for yourself and don’t blindly go by what someone else says.
Conversely, if the price seems to good to be true, then most likely you will be getting an inferior or diluted product. It takes a lot of plant matter to make a small amount of essential oil. For instance, it takes approximately 30 pounds of lavender flowers to make 15 milliliters of essential oil.
How do you find a good quality essential oil? Ask people who use them on a regular basis, especially people that use them in the products they make. Most of all, use your nose and carefully sniff different brands. If you are looking to purchase some lavender essential oil, find a lavender plant, close your eyes, and sniff. Make a mental note on the scent. Lavender has a rather astringent scent. Find the essential oil that has the same scent. Citrus essential oils come from the peel of the fruit. If you take an orange peel, fold it and squeeze, the oil that comes out is what that essential oil should smell like.
Essential oils can be used several ways:
- Neat, which means straight out of the bottle (not recommended and can cause some very unpleasant effects)
- Diluted in a carrier oil (different oils have different dilution rates)
- Inhalation (either sniffing the bottle or adding some essential oil to hot water and inhaling the steam)
- Hydrosol (mixing an essential oil with water and using a spray bottle to dispense)
- Internally (not recommended)
- Aromatherapy (adding essential oils to a diffuser)
Always consider safety first! If you are not sure, do not use it! There are many essential oils that should not be used on children under two years of age, and some that should not be used on children between the ages of two and six. Others are not recommended for pregnant or nursing women. Some are phototoxic (cause skin irritation is sunlight), others are not safe for your pets, and there are some that should never be used at all.
If you would like to learn more about essential oils, their uses and applications, receive some formulas for making your own blends and how to use them around the house, please sign up for Naturally by Darla’s Essential Oils 101 class
WHEN: Thursday May 18th 7-9 pm at the Lightheart Center, 0S165 Church St, Winfield, IL 60190
CALL: 1-847-334-1580 to register (please leave a message if we are unable to answer)
Preregistration is required. Deadline to register is May 15th. Cost is $25.00.
Email any questions you may have to firstname.lastname@example.org
There will also be an assortment of essential oils, mist bottles, 15 ml bottles and pipettes available to purchase after class so you can go home prepared to use the formulas and knowledge you attained in class!