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Oils For Hair Growth


Oils have been used throughout history to preserve the life and vitality of hair. Their stimulating, insulating and coating properties make them invaluable in hair care. The proper use of oils can help support hair growth.

What are Oils?

Oils are hydrophobic, or water-repelling, substances that trap moisture within the hair shaft. Water like essential oils applied to the scalp increase blood flow and nutrients to the area.

Functions

Oils promote hair growth in two ways: scalp stimulation and protection of pre-existing strands. Essential oils stimulate the scalp skin to encourage hair emergence. Heavier oils aid growth by fortifying the entire shaft against breakage. Reduced hair breakage over time produces longer hair.

Essential Oils

Peppermint and rosemary oils are scalp-stimulating essential oils that promote growth by controlling the overproduction of sebum, our natural skin oil. They increase scalp circulation by creating tingling sensations on the skin.

Carrier Oils

Jojoba and sweet almond oils are heavier oils that closely mimic the structure of sebum. Carrier oils like these are used to dilute lighter essential oils to reduce scalp and skin irritation.

Fixed Oils

Coconut and castor oils are heavier oils that promote hair growth by reducing hair breakage along the shaft. These softening oils also impart pliable strength to the length of the hair.

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Essential Oils & Carrier Oils – Nappy Hair Care

Essential Oils & Carrier Oils

This is a guide to essential oils & carrier oils for nappy, napptural, or natural hair of African descent. Your hair can benefit from two types of oils. These two types of oils are essential oils and carrier oils. Essential oils are fragrant oils that are actually the concentrated essence, or ‘life force’ of a plant. Essential oils are light and do not feel like an oil. They evaporate quickly. You would mix essential oils with a carrier oil before you put it on your hair to prevent skin irritation. Carrier oils are oily in consistency. They can be oil from a vegetable, a fruit, a nut, or even a seed.


Essential Oils for Nappy Hair

All essential oils are not created equal. Look for the highest grade you can find. Only buy Complete Essential Oils or Genuine Grade A Essential Oils. These are oils that contain the most natural oil and the least amount of additives and chemicals. Some essential oils for the hair are:

Basil which stimulates the scalp.
Cedarwood which is an astringent, antiseptic, balances production of sebum, and stimulates the scalp. Sebum is your hair’s natural oil.
Chamomile which adds sheen and conditions the hair.
Eucalyptus which removes dandruff and has antiseptic properties.
Frankincense which is used to get rid of dry scalp.
Jasmine which is often used for fragrance.
Lavender which is used for dandruff and fragrance.
Lemon which cleanses the hair and scalp and improves hair elasticity.
Myrrh which is used for dry hair and scalp.
Orange Oil which helps the hair by regulating the production of sebum. Sebum is your hair’s natural oil.
Palmarosa which helps the hair by regulating the production of sebum. Sebum is your hair’s natural oil.
Patchouli which treats dandruff and oily hair.
Peppermint which stimulates the scalp.
Rose Oil which is used as fragrance and to sooth the scalp.
Rosemary Oil (DO NOT USE IF YOU ARE PREGNANT!) which stimulates the scalp and treats dandruff.
Sandalwood Oil which is an astringent, an anti-inflammatory, as well as an antiseptic. Use sandalwood oil to soothe a dry and irritated scalp.
Tea Tree Oil which is used to treat dandruff and kill lice. Tea tree oil balances production of sebum and stimulates the scalp. Sebum is your hair’s natural oil.
Ylang-Ylang which balances production of sebum, stimulates the scalp. Sebum is your hair’s natural oil.

Carrier Oils for Nappy Hair

You can use carrier oils with essential oils or by themselves. A popular, readily available, and inexpensive carrier oil is extra virgin olive oil. Other carrier oils for the hair are:

Almond Oil which is a light, non greasy, fast absorbing hair conditioner.
Apricot Kernel Oil which is used for dry hair. It makes your hair shiny and moisture rich. It contain a large amount of linoleic acid which is essential for cell health.
Avocado Oil which is a light, protein and vitamin rich. It include vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin D, and potassium.
Castor Oil which is a humectant. Humectants attract moisture into your hair.
Grapeseed Oil which is odorless and vitamin rich. It makes your hair shiny and moisture rich. It contain a large amount of linoleic acid which is essential for cell health.
Hazelnut Oil which is fast absorbing and medium weight. It contain a large amount of linoleic acid which is essential for cell health.
Jojoba Oil which is simular to sebum, which is your hair’s natural oil. It can be used with or without an essential oil. It is often used 50/50 with another carrier oil to massage the scalp.

Additional Popular Carrier Oils

Aloe Vera Oil
Calendula Oil
Carrot Oil
Coconut Oil
Emu Oil
Neem Oil
Papaya Oil
Rosehip Oil
Safflower Oil
Sesame Oil
Sunflower Oil
Vitamin E Oil
Walnut Oil
Wheatgerm Oil
Mixing Essential and Carrier Oils

When you mix your essential and carrier oils, as a general rule, use a one (1) drop essential oil per four (4) tablespoons of carrier oil.

Using Essential and Carrier Oils Mixtures

Mix only the amount you are planning to use. This is because essential oils do not have a very long shelf life. Adding a couple of drops of wheatgerm oil to the mixture will extend the shelf life. As an added benefit, wheatgerm oil also has healing properties.

There are Four (4) Grades of Essential Oils:

Pure Essential Oils: This means that the oil was not diluted with a lesser quality essential oil. Be aware, however, that it could be 80% vegetable oil & 20% essential oil and still be labeled ‘100% Pure.’

Natural Essential Oils: This means that the oil was not altered with vegetable oils, SD Alcohol 40, propylene glycol, or other chemicals.

Complete Essential Oils: This means that the oil was distilled at low heat and low pressure in order to preserve its therapeutic properties. This means that the oil has not been rectified or purified (which means stripped or redistilled). Rectifying and purifying is like reusing a tea bag. It makes more tea, but the quality and potency suffers. This process decreases the essential oil’s therapeutic properties.

Genuine, Authentic, or Grade A Essential Oils: These are the best of the best. Great care is taken at every step of the process. Chemicals are never used on the plants. Great care is taking in choosing each plant, time spent in the distillation process, harvesting process, gas chromatograph readings, etc. A gas chromatograph is a chemical analysis instrument used to separate chemicals.

Essential oil is also known as volatile oil and ethereal oil. They may also be referred to as “oil of” the raw plant material from which it was extracted. For example, Oil of Clove.

Do realize that fragrance oils and perfumes are not the same as essential oils.

A Word about Hair Grease, Mineral Oil, Petrolatum, and Petroleum

Approximately 99.9% of Black hair care products use mineral oil, petrolatum, or petroleum as its main ingredient because they are cheap to produce. Mineral oil comes from petroleum or crude oil. Yes, same as the motor oil under your hood. Yes, the same as ‘grease’. Yes, the same as Vaseline. Yes, the same products your family has used for generations.

Grease does NOT moisturize your hair. It actually coats your hair, like plastic wrap, which prevents moisture from getting in. Grease basically causes your hair to die of thirst!

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Basic Tools For Natural Hair


Well, the list is very simple; your hands (of course), water, and moisturizer. Those are the basic tools that you need to maintain your natural hair. Some with naptural hair elect not to use a comb or brush, but for those who want to detangle without only using their hands, a wide tooth comb and brush need to also be a part of your list.

Of course, your hands are probably a given, but water is an important tool that is often forgotten about. Natural hair loooves water. Water is a great detangler/moisturizer. In the summer, when I wear box braids I keep a spray bottle filled with water mixed with a little water soluble “eo” – (essential oil – I like lavender) in the refrigerator.

I lightly spritz my head after coming in from a day under the hot sun to give it some moisture. When it dries, the lavender leaves a nice clean smell. I also use the water mixture before and after I take down my braids to help with detangling. The water and eo mixture can also be used with extension styles as well.

Now during the cooler months, and depending on what hair style you are wearing (like a transition style that requires your permed ends to be straight or curled) it may not be wise to use simply water as a moisturizer. When it comes to a moisturizer you will have to experiment with a few to find out which one your hair likes best.

An important note on moisturizers : The moisturizer I am referring to is ‘hair moisturizer’ a moisturizer put on for your hair, to be gently massaged, rubbed or brushed through your hair and to ends – to give it a healthy-looking sheen and to prevent dry ends. Some people ‘religiously’ use moisturizers on their scalp – the old ‘grease your scalp’ mentality. In reality you do not have to ‘grease your scalp’. Our scalp produces it’s own moisturizer called sebum.

Some people who have dry scalp and/or dandruff believe that ‘greasing’ their scalp helps or prevents this, but it does not. Dry scalp and/or dandruff are actually a result of too much oil on your scalp. Dandruff can be managed by a mild anti-dandruff shampoo or if more severe yo should seek the care of a dermatologist. For those with oily scalp tea tree oil with it’s natural drying antiseptic qualities is a remedy. Check out this website for more details.

Some people have a reaction to oil-based moisturizers. So for those who are prone to break-outs due to oil-based products, you should look for moisturizers that are water based – water should be the first ingredient. Also when looking for a moisturizer be conscious of products that contain ‘cones’ Dimethicone, Cyclomethicone, silicone, etc.

These ingredients are usually found in conditioners and shampoos, but are also found in moisturizers. Again you must experiment with products to see what’s best for your hair, but it’s been my experience that moisturizers that contain ‘cones’ especially ones that you plan on using daily or even weekly, tend to leave natural hair sticky and gummy, and result in scalp build-up.

Seek out moisturizers that contain ingredients close to our scalp’s own sebum like shea butter, sweet almond oil, jojoba and mango butter, and make sure they are high-up on the ingredient list. And for those who can not break the habit of ‘greasing’ your scalp you can massage your scalp with the balls of your fingers to distribute these natural moisturizers throughout your scalp.

Now to cut out the hassle of trying to decipher ingredients on the back of products, the simplest thing to do is to use natural products. Although you will also have to experiment with these, you will not have to worry about putting chemicals on your hair. Natural products can be a bit more expensive, but if you keep the products you use to a minimal, and keep in mind less is better to extend your products, in the end you may find that you will actually save money in comparison with the products you used before you were natural.

For more information please visit fromnaturewithlove.com

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Receipe: Aloe Vera Moisturizer Mist

Here is the receipe of my favorite moisturizer

Water
2 ounces Pure Aloe Vera Juice
2 ounces Coconut Oil or EVOO
1- Vitamin E capsule
1-2 tsp Glycerin or honey Quat
1-2 tsp jojoba Oil
2-3 drops of Rosemary EO ( or any EO of your choice) **optional**

Mix together in a spray bottle- Mist daily or as needed

** You can alter the amounts until you until you get the results you like***

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Loc Maintenance Oils-Essential & Others

What Oils Are Good

In a previous article regarding loc maintenance, I mentioned several oils — essential and otherwise — that can be good to have in your loc maintenance arsenal. Included in the list were:

Jojoba Oil: A carrier oil; closely emulates the natural oils produced by the sebacous glands

Sweet Almond Oil: also a carrier oil

Rosemary Essential Oil: assists with hair growth; should not be used by pregnant women

Extra Virgin Olive Oil: used for hot oil treatments; can be a carrier oil

Ylang Ylang Essential Oil: very aromatic; used to stimulate

The following herbs, which can be purchased as essential oils as well, should also be considered as part of your hair care regimen:

Chamomile: used to bring out the highlights in lighter colored hair

Horsetail: has a high silica content which helps relieve dry, brittleness; very moisturizing

Mint: stimulates the scalp

Nettle: a stimulant and helps with dandruff

Sage: used in hair rinses to remove dandruff; helps to restore color to hair that is graying

Thyme: treats oily hair and dandruff

You must be very careful in your use of essential oils. Improper or overuse of essential oils can have adverse affects on some. Please be sure that you fully understand the use of essential oils before incorporating them into your natural hair care regimen. There are plenty of resources out on the Internet that can assist you in learning the proper use and storage of essential oils.
One of my readers asked if all the oils listed needed to be used and how should they be used. This article is in response to her questions, and also to further elaborate on how these can be incorporated into your hair care routine.

Carrier Oils

Carrier oils are healthy oils used as a base for other products. They “carry” the essential oils which are added to them to your hair, scalp and skin when a recipe calls for an essential oil to be infused or diluted. Two carrier oils that are great for your locs and natural hair are jojoba oil and sweet almond oil.

Jojoba Oil: Jojoba oil mimics the natural oils that the scalp’s sebacous glands excrete. However, care should still be taken to not over-use this or any other oil. Over-use will cause build up, resulting in dull, grayish locs that attract lint and dirt. This isn’t what we’re aiming for! Use a small amount of jojoba oil in your misting bottle to keep your tresses moisturized. Adding some ylang ylang for fragrance, as well as it’s uplifting properties will invigorate your hair and mind.

Sweet Almond Oil: This light, penetrable oil is also a great carrier oil. It also can be used in your misting bottle to moisturize. However, I suggest you use either jojoba or sweet almond — not both in the same misting bottle. Please remember that this oil is extracted from almonds. Those with nut sensitivities/allergies should be aware.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil: Although not recommend, extra virgin olive oil can be used as a carrier oil. It is a much heavier oil than jojoba or sweet almond, and therefore is not recommended for this purpose. Extra virgin olive oil is best used as a hot oil treatment, which would be thoroughly rinsed from your tresses, and as an ingredient in conditioners that will also be rinsed out of the hair.

Essential Oils

I cannot stress enough that one must understand the proper storage and use of essential oils. Misuse of these products can cause ill effects. Please read, learn, and understand all precautions of using any essential oil you may choose before incorporating them in your recipes and spritzes. The Internet holds a wealth of information and guidance on this subject. One site that I have used in the past is http://www.fromnaturewithlove.com. I am in no way associated with this site other than being a customer.

Rosemary: This essential oil has been noted to assist with hair growth. I recommend using weekly/bi-weekly. Some have been known to use daily; however, excess use may cause side effects. Rosemary is not recommended for use by pregnant women or those who may think they are pregnant.

Thyme: Used to control oil and dandruff, incorporating a weekly spritz of thyme can promote the healthy production of oil, while preventing dryness to the point of dandruff.

Nettle: Also used for the treatment of dandruff. This essential oil is known to promote hair growth.

Sage: Another remedy some use for dandruff control, sage is also known as a color restorative to hair which is graying.

Chamomile: Chamomile is known for its benefit to light colored hair — it enhances the natural highlights without chemicals.

Horsetail: Hair that suffers from brittleness can benefit from the essential oil, horsetail, via a bi-weekly spritz. The high amount of silica present in horsetail helps to soften and condition dry, brittle hair.

Adding a drop or two of Mint essential oil to any one above in your misting bottle will energize your scalp. Mint is a scalp stimulant, and stimulation is of course beneficial to blood flow and a healthy scalp.

How To Use

The question posed by the reader is “do we have to use them all and how?” The simple answer is “no.” However, there are some things one should consider…

If your hair has multiple, different symptoms of stress such as severe dandruff and brittleness, you may opt to treat one symptom at a time. This will ensure that you can accurately determine if the method you have used to treat the problem is working for you. It should help also to curb any instances of making one symptom worse while trying to alleviate another.

Let’s say you are having trouble with both brittleness ane dandruff. I would think that the first remedy you would like to attempt would be to get rid of the unsightly dandruff. So you would institute in your regimen methods that alleviate dandruff — a good, moisturizing natural shampoo known for its properties to combat dandruff. Then you would choose one of the essential oils mentioned here (or another that you have learned of elsewhere) which have properties that alleviate dandruff and, following proper care and handling instructions, infuse that essential oil in your spritz bottle or other recipe for your hair. You would stick with this regimen for at least 30 days in order to see if it resolves the dandruff issue. If not, you may have to try a different essential oil which is conducive to combatting dandruff.

Once you have gotten the dandruff problem under control, then you turn your concentration to the brittleness factor. Infuse a few drops, handled properly, in sweet almond oil and spritz your hair with this mixture once a week. I would not recommend using it more than weekly, else you may find yourself with a build up problem since this is an oil-based spritz and not water-based. Make sure to thoroughly spritz your tresses without saturating them. A gentle massage down the length of your locs will help ensures your tresses can easily benefit from this moisturizing spritz.

Now that you have both problems under control, you want to adjust your regimen to a “maintenance” level to avoid product build up or the adverse affects of over-use of your essential oils. Any product that is over-used, whether it contains essential oils or not, can be damaging to your hair, scalp, and or self. Never overdo it. Moderation is key. Maybe your maintenance can be as simple as a once a week spritz with the essential oil that combats dandruff, daily water spritzing, every-other-day spritzing with a water + humectant such as organic honey, and bi-monthly deep conditioning hot oil treatments with extra virgin olive oil.

I also suggest a bi-monthly ACV rinse (apple cider vinegar), especially if you are putting product in your hair daily (essential or other oils, herbal remedies, etc.). This will prevent product build up and dull looking locs. The rinse is easy enough to make and use yourself — one-part ACV with three-parts distilled water; while holding your head over a large bowl placed in the sink, pour the ACV rinse over your tresses making sure they are all saturated, repeating the process until all of the rinse is gone then rinse hair thoroughly with luke warm water.

Let’s Recap

No, you do not have to use all of the oils mentioned here in your regimen. Choose the oil(s) that will treat the condition(s) you are dealing with or the oil that will produce the benefit you are looking for (i.e., more sheen, softer locs, aromatic scents, etc.). Use of too much product can cause build up. And, again, please be sure you know the proper use and handling of any essential oil you choose. Know if there are other ingredients that you should not mix a particular essential oil with.

You must educate yourself on what you put in your hair before putting it in there! From Nature with Love is an excellent resource for information on the proper use and handling of essential oils. Do some research and learn what is best for your tresses.

Most importantly — Listen to your Locs! They will speak to you. They will tell you what they need and what they are getting too much of. They want to thrive for you. Help them become the beautiful head of natural hair that you have envisioned for yourself throughout your loc journey.

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Guide to Purchasing Essential Oils

I receiveed a request asking where to purchase essential oils. I thought I would share an guide on ” how to purchase essential oils” and provide a list of vendors/suppliers at the bottom of where I purchase my oils. GOOD LUCK and HAPPY SHOPPING!!!!
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Essential oils are readily available from many health food and aromatherapy stores, via mail-order, and via companies that have Web sites. Although readily available, the quality of essential oils from one vendor to another can vary drastically whether you buy them locally or not. Additionally, the price charged is not necessarily an indication of the quality of the vendor’s oils.

Poor quality oils (oils that have been distilled from poor crops, have been handled improperly, are old, etc.) or adulterated oils (oils that have chemicals or other oils added to them) lack the therapeutic benefit of good quality oils. Additionally essential oils that have been adulterated can cause harmful side effects, or at best provide only minimal therapeutic benefit.

Below are tips that can help you select vendors of pure, high quality essential oils:

Watch out for words such as “fragrance oil,” “nature identical oil,” or “perfume oil.” These words indicate that what you see is not a pure, single essential oil. Many vendors label fragrance oils (that can be combinations of essential oils and chemicals or just plain chemicals) and perfume oils as “aromatherapy.” Countless vendors of strictly fragrance oils have written me to ask for advertising of their “aromatherapy oils.” Beginners need to watch out for these vendors who inaccurately use the alternative medicine term aromatherapy for their own sales gain.

The term “pure essential oil” is overused in the aromatherapy industry. Pure essential oils can be distilled from poor quality crops, be sitting in someone’s inventory or on a store’s shelves for years, be stored in a way that damages the oils, or be mishandled by vendors so that oils are accidentally mixed during bottling. So, don’t get overly impressed by a vendor that labels their oils as “pure.”

Avoid oils that are sold in clear glass bottles as the clear glass can allow light to damage the essential oils. Instead, buy oils that are stored in amber (brown) or other dark colored glass bottles. Some vendors sell oils in aluminum bottles. Aluminum is said to be acceptable if the inside of the bottle is lined.

Avoid buying essential oils in plastic bottles as the essential oil can dissolve the plastic. In turn, the dissolved plastic will contaminate the oil.

Avoid buying essential oils that have a rubber eyedropper bulb in the top because the oil can dissolve the rubber dropper and become contaminated.

Seek out vendors that promote that they test all their oils, supply samples that you can try before you buy, and that give you confidence in their knowledge (often by providing detailed information on each oil they sell and provide other aromatherapy information that instills confidence).

If you are comparing online vendors, send e-mail to them asking questions that you have. If you don’t have any, think of something to ask so that you have a reason to write them. Find out how helpful and knowledgeable they seem. My biggest rant about aromatherapy vendors is that very few have good oils as well as good customer service.

Watch out for vendors that sell all their oils for the same price. This doesn’t mean the oils are not pure or of good quality, but it often does. Neroli, Jasmine and Rose, for instance, should cost a lot more than geranium and Ylang Ylang. A good quality patchouli usually costs more than eucalyptus. The basic citrus oils such as grapefruit, lemon and sweet orange oils are some of the least expensive oils.

When buying essential oils locally, watch for oils that have dust on the top of the bottles. This is an indication that the oils have been sitting around. As time passes, many oils lose their therapeutic properties, and their aroma diminishes. The bottles should be sealed so that the oil couldn’t be contaminated by other cutomers. Be sure they have tester bottles of the EOs so that you can sample the oils.

Try to avoid buying oils from catalogs or Web sites that don’t list the essential oil’s botanical (Latin name), country of origin or method of extraction. I’ve bought good quality oils from companies that don’t bother listing this information, but I often wonder why any truly knowledgeable vendor would not realize the importance of including this information. For instance, there are multiple varieties of Bay, Cedarwood, Chamomile, Eucalyptus, and so on. Each has different therapeutic properties. The country of origin for oils is also important because the climate and soil conditions can affect the resulting properties of the oil. Is that rose oil steam distilled or is it an absolute? Any good aromatherapy vendor should realize the necessity for providing this information, so I can only assume vendors that don’t bother to include it are lazy, unknowledgeable about the importance of supplying this information or buy their oils from different distributors and don’t want to have to update their catalogs/web sites anytime they find a different source.

Organic oils may be superior to non-organic oils.

Be careful when buying essential oils from companies that primarily sell to the food & beverage or perfumery industries. Some vendors that primarily sell to these industries may have different goals in the purchase and sale of their essential oils than the goals of vendors that sell therapeutic-grade oils specifically for aromatherapy use. The restaurant and perfumery industries desire essential oils that have a standardized (consistent) aroma or flavor. The oils sold by these sources may be redistilled to remove or add specific constituents (natural chemicals found in the oils). These re-distillations or adulterations may harm the therapeutic use of the oils. If desiring to buy from such a vendor, inquire first to ask about their methods.

Most of us need to watch how much we spend. It’s very tempting to buy essential oils from the companies that sell them for the lowest price. Price alone isn’t an indication of quality, but it can be. Knowledgeable vendors that spend countless hours locating quality oils, pay the expensive fees to test their oils and provide free samples upon request should rightfully be charging more for their oils than retailers that stock oils that they’ve sourced from the cheapest sources.

When choosing to try a particular vendor, place a small first order and ask for additional samples (don’t ask for a sample of everything, honestly ask for 2-4 samples of oils that you are sincerely interested in purchasing). The goal is to find out if this is a vendor that you are pleased with without wasting your money on large orders that you might not be happy with.

Be cautious about purchasing oils from vendors at street fairs, craft shows, festivals or other limited-time events. Many of these vendors are selling products as a hobby, and unfortunately some vendors at these events may know their customers have no recourse against them after the event is over. This is not to say that there are not highly reputable sellers at such events, but this is a caution for beginners who are not able to reliably judge quality at first.

Reputable Vendors/Suppliers

GNC ( in store and online)
Vitamin Shoppe
Trader Joe’s
Lowes Food
Whole Foods
http://www.iherb.com
http://www.amazon.com
http://www.100pureessentialoils.com
http://www.herbalremedies.com
http://www.YoungLiving.org
http://www.Target.com
http://www.wlnaturalhealth.com
http://www.www.RockyMountainOils.com
http://www.mountainroseherbs.com

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Exceptional Skin Care Recipes with Essential Oils

Exceptional Skin Care Recipes with Essential Oils

The use of essential oils can be tracked as early as 4500 BC. They were used in spiritual rituals and possibly the first medicinal treatments. Today essential oils are commonly used in skin care products, the foundation of aromatherapy, and healing.

Oils are classified into two types: carrier oils and essential oils.

Carrier oils are usually derived from the seeds, kernels or nut, such as almond oil, apricot oil, avocado oil, and sunflower oil just to name a few. Carrier oils have unique characteristics that can provide therapeutic value in skin care products, aromatherapy and healing.
Essential oils are distilled from leaves, barks, roots, flowers and other aromatic parts of a plant or tree. Essential oils are more potent than carrier oils and if applied to the skin undiluted can cause severe irritation or allergic reaction. Therefore, essential oils are mixed with carrier oils to dilute potency. Additionally carrier oils carry the essential oil too the skin, thus the term carrier oil.

Essential oils are not the same as perfume or fragrance oils. Whereas essential oils are created from botanicals, perfume oils and fragrances are chemically created and do not offer any therapeutic benefits.

In skin care, carrier oils are usually referred to as base oils, vegetable oils or fixed oils. Additionally there are animal based carrier oils such as Emu oil (from the emu bird) and fish oils. In general, aromatherapy blends do not include vegetable oils or animal based carrier oils.

Below is a short list of common carrier oils and essential oils and the therapeutic value of each oil:

Carrier Oils:

Sweet Almond oil: Effective makeup remover and moisturizer. It has a great effect on fighting wrinkles, as well as having an anti-bacterial effect on the skin.

Avocado: Moisturizes, reduces appearance of age spots, heals sun damage and scars. Additionally, avocado regenerates and rejuvenates the skin. Avocado increases collagen in the skin and therefore is an anti-aging ingredient in skin care. Avocado oil has superior moisturizing qualities.

Jojoba: Balances skin’s sebum, therefore beneficial for both dry and oily skin types. Also an eye-makeup remover rich in moisturizing properties.

Olive Oil: Contains natural anti-oxidants and vitamins and acts an anti-inflammatory in skin care products. Also used in scar treatments from acne, eczema and stretch marks.

Essential Oils:

Chamomile: An excellent skin cleanser. Good for dry and itchy skin, eases puffiness and strengthens tissues. Smooth out broken capillaries thus improving skin elasticity.

Geranium: A good overall skin cleanser. Wonderful oil for mature and troubled skin and brings a radiant glow and promotes circulation. Safety Precautions: Geranium essential oil is well tolerated by most individuals, but since it helps in balancing the hormonal system, care must be taken during pregnancy.

Lavender: Useful for all skin types as it promotes growth of new cells and exerts a balancing effect on the sebum (oil glands). Has a healing effect on burns, sunburns, acne, eczema and psoriasis.

Lemon: Brightens pale and dull complexions by removing dead skin cells. Has an effective cleansing action on oily skin. Note this oil is photo toxic; care should be taken to avoid exposure to sunlight, ultraviolet light and sun beds after application

Neroli: Useful for dry, sensitive and mature skin as it helps with regeneration of cells and improves elasticity. Helps reduce the appearance of varicose veins, scarring and stretch marks.

Rose: Particularly good for mature, dry, or sensitive skin. As a tonic it is a soothing quality for inflammation and constricting action on capillaries. Consider substituting rose geranium as Rose oil is very expensive, or consider making your own rose oil, get the recipe at

Complete Skin Care Therapy and click on the recipes tab, then essential oils.

Rosemary: Helpful for sagging skin as it is a strong astringent. Tones and tightens the skin. Has a stimulating effect on the uterus, so do not use if pregnant.

Sandalwood: A balancing oil and good for dehydrated skin, and dry eczema. Provides

Ylang Ylang: Has a balancing effect on sebum so useful for both oily and dry skin types.

Below are a few skin care recipes using the essential oils and carrier oils listed above:

Honey Facial Mask with Rose Oil

2 Tablespoons honey

2 Tablespoons sweet almond oil

5 drops Rose essential oil (very expensive, consider making your own essential oil, see my post – Make Your Own Essential Oils, or use Rose Geranium as a substitute)

1 drop Vitamin EMix honey, sweet almond oil and rose essential oil.

Massage onto clean face and neck with fingertips in an upward motion. Allow to set on face and neck for 15 minutes. Rinse off with tepid water. Gently pat dry and see the benefits.

Moisturizer for Normal Skin

Geranium 1 drop

Lavender 2 drops

Sweet Almond Oil – 1 Tablespoon

Apply to face after cleansing and toning. Use a few drops of this blended mixture as needed. Note: when mixing your essential oils with the carrier oil or lotion, let set for 1 to 2 days so the oils can blend thoroughly.

Essential oils are fun to work with and offer so many benefits in skin care, healing properties, and in the home through aromatherapy. The above list is just a sampling of what essential oils can do for you. However, essential oils are very potent and care should be taken when using them. Additionally, a patch test is always recommended as with any new skin care product.

Essential oils are also eco-friendly!