Doctors and beauty experts say that some amount of oil is essential to keep our skin healthy and glowing. Going further, oils can even influence our mental condition. No wonder then that essential oils are so popular today.
Essential oils are obtained from the seeds, peel, bark, flowers, roots, and leaves of various plants. Although this term is comparatively new, people have been using essential oils for physical and mental health since time immemorial. Ancient Ayurvedic texts from India report the use of such oils to treat various aches and pains and induce relaxation of mind and body. Today, apart from Ayurveda, essential oils are used in aromatherapy, cosmetics, perfumery, and incense. They are also used to impart flavor to certain dishes and to add fragrance to domestic cleaning products.
Aromatherapy oils are concentrated liquids, and they have the essence of the plant from which they are derived. Its not that all parts of a plant yield essential oil, for example, orange peel, cedar wood, almond seed, and clove flower are the respective parts of the plants that are used to obtain oil.
As fragrance oils are marketed in concentrated forms, they should not be applied undiluted on the skin. They are diluted with the help of carrier oils like olive or hazelnut by qualified and experienced aroma-therapists, so avoid mixing and matching oils on your own at home! Use of undiluted essential oil or the wrong mix can trigger severe allergic reactions. For the same reason, never allow kids to handle essential oils without adult supervision. As these oils smell really nice, kids may have the tendency to consume them. So, if you keep these oils at home, store them in a locked cabinet and out of children’s reach.
Before your aromatherapy session, request a patch test with the recommended essential oil. This is especially important if you are prone to allergies in general. Some oils are not known to cause any allergy, but even then, never bypass this step. Essential oils are inflammable so it’s essential to store them properly. In addition, use very small amounts of oil and never consume the oils.
Citrus, lavender, sandalwood, jojoba, chamomile, tea tree oils are some oils that are used as massage, bath, or skin care oils. These help to nourish skin, reduce inflammation, and tackle infection and keep skin soft and fresh. A skin care expert or an aroma-therapist will tell you exactly which oil will be suitable for your skin type. Apart from widespread use in skin care, essential oils are used to relax the body and the mind.
Jasmine, basil, frankincense, sandalwood, peppermint are some oils used in aromatherapy to treat fatigue. Frankincense, orange, lemon, and rose oils reportedly induce a sense of well-being and happiness. Confidence boosters include grapefruit, cypress, and jasmine oils; grapefruit and jasmine oils are also excellent stress busters. If you suffer from low confidence levels or are constantly depressed, aromatherapy sessions can help. While jasmine, orange, grapefruit and rosemary oils can enhance your confidence, rose sandalwood, and lavender can lift your spirits.
If you don’t have the time or the money for expensive aromatherapy sessions you can simply light incense sticks containing essential oils at home. They will not only add fragrance to your home, but will have a soothing effect on you. You could also buy perfumes that contain oils like lavender or jasmine. The options are many for the seeker!