General Properties Of Essential Oils

The aroma of plants:

  • Attracts insects
  • Repels certain creatures
  • The aura of a plant protects it from the sun
  • Protects from viruses

All oils are antiseptic.

The essential oil of the plant may be compared to human hormones.

  • Unlike modern drugs, there is no side effect when using essential oils properly.
  • Some plants have over 100 chemical components.
  • Our body keeps what it needs from the oils and removes the rest.
  • Essential oils may be found on any part of a plant
  • Essential oils are formed in the Chloroblast of the plant (cellular capsule).

The chemical composition depends on the climate, pollution and the soil.

Help us keep this information free.

Buying An Aromatherapy Essential Oils

When choosing an aromatherapy essential oil, it is important to pick the best ones you can afford.

It will improve the success rate of your treatments.

No pesticides, fertilizers or other chemical should have been used when growing the plant.

Whenever possible, the oil should be marked of organic origin or grown wildly.

The length of time between the harvesting and the shipping to distributor should be minimum to ensure the freshness of the product.

The distributor should not keep the oil on their shelves for a long period of time.

Good quality aromatherapy essential oil will of course be pricier than poor quality ones. However, the results achieved will greatly justify the extra cost.

Using cheap oil is a false saving as in many occasions, only a slight improvement will be noticed

A First Class Supplier Of Essential Oils

I have spent many weeks researching the aromatherapy essential oil market, and you may like to follow my advice and order your essential oils from the company below.

Click here to find out why I recommend them.

Note: Even though I get a (very) small commission when you order, your price will not be any higher. This amount will help me carry on with the development of this website.

Never, Never...

  • Buy oil stored in a plastic bottle
  • Buy oil stored in a clear glass bottle
  • Buy diluted oils (read the label carefully)
  • Buy an oil called "Perfume oil", it will be synthetic
  • Buy from suppliers that offer all their oils at the same price
  • Avoid high street chains "own brand" oils 
  • Try to save money by buying the cheapest oils


Buy oils in dark glass bottles
  • Buy your aromatherapy essential oils in dark glass bottles (Amber or dark blue) 
  • Buy from a range of Essential oils that vary wildly in price
  • Get the country of origin

Buy organic oil - or from plants that have been wildly grown.

Try to buy an oil where the Latin name is mentioned as this is internationally recognized and there are fewer chances of getting a different oil than the one you want.

It is essential to get the finest oils you can afford if you want them to "work" for you. 

Poor oils at best will do little or nothing, and leave you feeling disappointed that your experiments in aromatherapy were not successful.

At worst, they may produce some allergic reactions if synthetics are involved, or run the risk of skin irritation.

Storing Essential Oils

Assuming you have bought from a reputable supplier of organic aromatherapy essential oils, they will last for several years if you look after them properly.

Essential oils are damaged by sunlight and by exposure to the air. They can also be harmed by extreme temperature, vibration, proximity to electric meters, radiations and X-rays.

If you follow a few simple rules, your oils will last you many years.

  • Store them away from direct sunlight
  • Store them in a moderately cool place
  • Replace the lid tightly immediately after use
  • Keep oils away from vibration, loud noise, meters, etc…

Aromatherapy Essential Oil Safety Dilution

Because essential oils are such concentrated substances, we hardly ever use them undiluted - a couple of drops of Lavender or Tea-tree are the exception.

Oils applied in massage need to be diluted in a carrier oil (new page). The dilution is 2 to 3% essential oil for body use and 1% for facial use, pregnant women, babies or the frail and elderly.

This dilution is low enough to be safe but also high enough to be effective.

To make a 2% dilution of essential oil, dilute 2 drops of essential oil to 1 teaspoon of carrier oil (approximately 5ml or 100 drops).

Increase the amount of carrier oil for a larger frame, NOT essential oil

Aromatherapy Essential Oil Methods of Absorption

Oil penetrates the skin via hair follicles (5,000,000 air shafts on the body for the oils to go in) to interstitial fluid to capillaries.

The sweat glands take the oils through the subcutaneous levels.

It enters the lungs through the alveoli in the lungs. The lungs relate to our feelings about ourselves and our ability to take in life.

Aromatherapy Massage

This is the most important form of treatment in Aromatherapy. A massage is very relaxing.

The skin is the largest organ of the body and presents the most effective way of absorbing essential oils.

The rubbing action activates the nerve endings and stimulates the circulation of blood to the surface of the skin easing the entry of the oils.

General effects of Aromatherapy Essential Oils: 


  • Encourage the growth of new cells.
  • Delay ageing by elimination of old cells more quickly.
  • Anti-bacterial action promotes healing.
  • Improve venous and lymph flow thus preventing congestion of skin.
  • Help relax the nerves.
  • Help relax the body and mind.
  • Improve the balance of physiological harmony.

N. B : A large amount of subcutaneous fat will impede their passage as will water retention and poor circulation.

Aromatic Bath

Another effective way of treating with aromatherapy essential oil is to add a few drops to a warm bath.

Make sure the room temperature is adequate and that the doors and windows are closed to keep in vapours.

Immerse your body up to your head for at least ten minutes, relax and breathe deeply. Some odoriferous molecules will penetrate the skin, whilst others will stimulate the nerve endings in the nose.

These nerve endings are an extension of the portion of the brain, which is responsible for governing our feelings of pleasure, contentment and well-being, as well as our appetite, thirst and sexual behaviour.

They also connect with the part of the brain called the hypothalamus gland. 

Aromatherapy Bath

This controls the endocrine glands in the body (the thyroid, adrenals, ovaries, etc).

The essential oils can exert a powerful influence over the hormonal secretions from the glands, helping to stimulate an under active organ or soothe an agitated one to re-establish harmonious functioning.

The vapours of essential oils are inhaled while sitting in a bath with added oils.

There are various ways of utilizing the aromatherapy essential oils:

  • 6-10 drops of one or more oils are blended in a teaspoon of milk (to gain a better "mix" between the oils and bath water) and then scattered over the bath once the water has been turned off and some steam has been cleared.
  • 6-10 drops of one or more essential oils are mixed with two teaspoons of carrier oil and added to the bath water after the bath has run and the steam cleared.
  • 6-10 drops of one or more essential oils are mixed with one tablespoon of shampoo or liquid soap and poured into the bath.

After the bath, some oil remains on the skin and it should only be patted dry to leave a lingering fragrance on the body.

Steam Inhalation

Essential Oil Inhalation

Steam inhalations are an  effective way of using aromatherapy essential oil to treat colds, catarrh, sinusitis and sore throat.

The method is elementary:

Fill a basin with very hot water - just short of boiling - and have a large towel at hand.

Add 1 to 3 drops of essential oils to the basin and drape the towel over the basin and the person needing to inhale so that the steam is retained inside a sort of "tent".

The steam should be breathed in for about 5 minutes. If the inhalation is intended to help a cough or sore throat, advise the sufferer to breathe in  through the mouth…

Only use one drop of aromatherapy essential oil for a child and allow 3 to 4 minutes. The child should be supervised during this operation.

When treating asthma sufferers, try them on the above for 30 seconds before continuing. This is necessary as some asthma sufferers are worsened by steam whilst others benefit from it.

You can also buy facial saunas from electrical stores and large chemist. Use only a single drop in these (they are powerful).

Steaming should however be avoided if the skin is delicate or there are broken veins.


Aromatherapy Compress

Compresses may be hot or cold.

The method used is the same in both cases :

Fill in a bowl or basin with water (very hot or very cold according to need).

  • Sprinkle 2 to 6 drops (depending on the size of the bowl) of aromatherapy essential oil on top of the water.
  • Dip some clean, absorbent cloth into the basin of water, then squeeze it to get rid of excess water and place it on the painful part of the body.
  • Renew the compress as soon as it gets too cold or too hot.
  • The compress should be used for 15 to 20 minutes.

Hot compresses are used for backache, muscular pain of all kinds, fibrositis, rheumatic or arthritic pain, menstrual cramps, toothache and dental abscesses to give relief. A hot compress can additionally be used to remove a splinter or a painful boil.

Cold compresses are used as first aid for sprains and other sports injuries, headaches and insect bites. For a headache, make a small compress with a flannel and lay it across the forehead.

Alternating cold and hot compress are used to speed up healing of muscle injuries. Always start and stop with the cold compress.

Nebulizing Diffusers, Candle Diffusers, Light Rings

These are used to circulate aromatherapy essential oils in a room. This is convenient to create an ambiance, it is also an efficient way of absorbing essential oils through the lungs which is beneficial in case of epidemics.

Nebulizing Diffusers project tiny droplets of essential oil into the air without the use of heat. They are more expensive but better than burners as they do not distort the essential oil. 

If you are keen on using aromatherapy essential oil to improve your health, a nebulizing diffuser is a good investment.

Candle Diffusers work by burning the essential oil and as such evaporating it in the air. Burning may however slightly distort the content of the oil and as such nebulizing Diffusers are more efficient.

A light ring can also be used. This fits around ordinary bulbs and are great for creating a special atmosphere in the house. These are also very cheap.

A spray can be made by dissolving 10 drops of essential oils to about 20mls of vodka and filling the rest of the spray with water. Shake the mixture well and spray it in the room.

Click here to view a range of available Diffusers

Other Methods To Use Essential Oils


Make your cream or mix the oil to a base cream and apply it to the skin.

Direct Applications

I would recommend that you only use the oils of Lavender and Tea-tree neat.

A couple of drops is sufficient, they can be massaged in the part of the body you wish to treat.

Only a small area of the skin should be treated.

This is ideal for colds, sore throats, headaches, spots, boils, burns, etc...


Aromatherapy essential oils can be taken internally in the form of teas made from flowers, leaves or as herbs and spices used in cooking.

The essential oils present in the petals and leaves of the herbs and other plants can be absorbed by the cells that line our stomach and intestines. From there, they enter the blood and lymph fluid and circulate around the body. Simultaneously, they aid the digestion of foods.

It is exceedingly dangerous to take essential oils undiluted by mouth as they are very concentrated and will have powerful and sometimes harmful effects.


Tepid water should be used.

Tea-tree oil is good for mouth ulcers and sore throat.

A Word Of Caution

The following group of people need to use essential oils with caution:

  • Pregnant Women (except Tangerine / Mandarin / Neroli)
  • Babies and young children
  • People with Epilepsy (Lavender or Neroli are fine)
  • The elderly. When treating a physically frail elderly, their low body weight should be taken into consideration and a dilution of 1% should be used
  • People with high or low blood pressure. Oils that raise blood pressure are Hyssop, Rosemary, Sage, Thyme and any other oil described as hypertensive.
    Oils that lower blood pressure are Lavender, Marjoram, Melissa and Ylang Ylang and any other oil described as hypotensive.
  • People with asthma. It is best to try a small amount of essential oil on a person with asthma to make sure that there is no reaction. If no reaction, the amount of oil used can be increased up to 2%.
  • People who have received chemotherapy. Do not use essential oil on people who are following chemotherapy treatment unless asked to do so by a medical practitioner.
  • Diabetes (it affects blood sugar level) 

The following are not complete contraindications but be careful when helping those. It is best to get authorization in writing from the client's doctor:

  • Contagious or infectious skin conditions
  • Post-operative states 1 year (minor) 2 years (major)
  • Advanced heart condition
  • Stroke / Angina / Thrombosis
  • Varicose veins (except around or compresses)
  • Phlebitis inflammation of the walls of the veins (X compress)
  • Cancer (unless terminal)
  • Unstable pregnancies
  • Do not treat acute conditions
  • Unrecognized lumps and bumps
  • On medication with doctors
  • Epilepsy (Lavender or Neroli OK). The oils of Sage, Fennel, Hyssop and Wormwood can trigger a fit of epilepsy and should never be used on people suffering from this disease. Rosemary in large quantity may also trigger a fit and is best avoided. 

General Rule:

If in doubt, do not use essential oils without the advice of a medically qualified practitioner.

follow me on facebook