What happens when we heat essential oil

Essential oils: their uses and effects

01/29/2021 I A contribution by Rebecca Winkens and Katharina Klenner I Images: Sonnentor, Unsplash, Pexels, Pixabay

Essential oils are considered a miracle weapon against all physical ailments, you can use them for personal hygiene and they make one out of every room Oasis of wellbeing. All your questions about the little wonder weapon will be answered here:

  • What's the difference between (all-natural) essential oils and Fragrance oils?
  • How do essential oils work?
  • Are they harmful to the (environment)?
  • How can you make essential oils yourself at home and where to buy them?

At the end you will also find out why you should definitely get one Fragrance diffuser should increase.

(All-natural) essential oil vs. fragrance oil - what is the difference?

In contrast to fragrance oils, essential oils are obtained 100% from plants. If only one plant is used to produce an oil, this oil is called “all-natural”. Essential oils are mostly obtained by the process of distillation and are very volatile. Fragrance oils, on the other hand, are characterized by their long-lasting aroma. They also consist entirely or in part of fragrances from the laboratory. For this reason, fragrance oils are cheaper than essential oils. Another big difference between scented oils and essential oils lies in the selection of aromas: This is smaller with essential oils, since they cannot be obtained at all from many plants or can only be obtained with great effort.

Fragrant medicine: effects and areas of application of essential oils

Plants produce essential oils to attract insects or repel pests and thus protect the plants. However, many essential oils can also be useful for humans - the people of ancient Egypt already knew this: They used the fragrant oils for beauty care and for various rituals. In the meantime, however, the secret of aromatherapy has got around in our latitudes and the effect of some essential oils has already been scientifically proven. For example, the oil from the Australian tea tree has an antibacterial effect and is therefore mainly used for skin diseases such as acne. EEG studies have confirmed the stress-relieving effect of lavender oil and its positive effects on the deep sleep phase. The areas of application of essential oils go much further: The natural oils are used for massages, for room fragrancing or as bath additives. Some essential oils, such as lemon, ginger or orange, are even suitable for cooking and baking. Fragrance oils, on the other hand, are particularly well suited for use in fragrance diffusers for room fragrancing. Of course, essential oils are also suitable for this.

Here is a list of some selected essential oils including their mechanisms of action:

  • antibiotic, disinfecting effect: tea tree oil, chamomile oil
  • Digestive effects: caraway seed oil, cinnamon oil
  • against colds: eucalyptus oil, spruce oil
  • skin caring effect: rose oil, lavender oil
  • Mosquito repellent: citronella oil, eucalyptus oil
  • Promotes concentration: eucalyptus oil, rosemary oil

Are essential oils harmful to the (environment)?

As everywhere else, the dose makes the poison: incorrectly dosed essential oils can have a toxic effect. With careful handling and the right dosage, however, nothing can happen. Since essential oils are highly concentrated substances, they should be used diluted in most cases. For a massage oil, for example, 1 to a maximum of 3% is sufficient and for a cream only a few drops of an essential oil. When buying, you should make sure that the oil is labeled as “100% natural” and that it comes from organic farming if possible. Conventionally grown essential oils mostly come from large crops that are usually treated with pesticides and artificial fertilizers.

Below we have listed three suppliers of essential oils from controlled organic cultivation.

Fragrance-it-Yourself: Make your own essential oils

We'll show you how you can easily make your own essential oil at home and benefit from the advantages of the all-rounder.

1) Select fragrance

First you have to decide on a scent: For the dark season, for example, roses or oranges, of which only the peel is used, are particularly good to lighten the mood and escape the autumn and winter blues. Or should it be something with a calming effect? Then maybe you should go for lavender sooner.

The herbs and flowers can be used fresh or dried.

2) Select oil

Which oil we choose depends on personal preferences and the subsequent application. In order to get a high quality result, the oil should be pressed gently, odorless and organically grown.

The biggest difference in the choice of oil is in the fatty acids, which can be saturated or unsaturated. In contrast to unsaturated fatty acids, saturated fatty acids (e.g. in coconut oil or shea butter) have almost no connection with surrounding molecules. This leads to a longer shelf life and good skin tolerance. Polyunsaturated fats such as linseed oil, on the other hand, combine quickly and are particularly valuable for the body because it cannot produce them itself. Unfortunately, they go rancid very quickly and require more careful storage. Oils such as olive oil or almond oil, on the other hand, have significantly more monounsaturated fatty acids and therefore have a longer shelf life.

3) Prepare the glass

You also need a jar that can be hermetically sealed and is dark so that the contents do not take UV damage. Before starting the oil production, you should rinse the glass with boiling hot water to kill all germs.

4) Fill up with oil and wait

Once everything has been prepared, the actual production can begin: To do this, you fill the herbs either in the prepared glass or in a pot. The oil also goes into the pot and is warmed up. It must not boil under any circumstances and should only be lukewarm. Then it is poured into the glass - either with the herbs or over the herbs. These must be completely covered in order to avoid the formation of mold. Now the jar is closed and the herbs are allowed to take effect. The oil is ready after 5 to 15 days.

5) Strain and enjoy

Finally, all you have to do is strain the oil through a sieve and you can use your self-made oil. Have fun.

Buy essential oils

Making your own essential oil is fun, but it also takes a few days. For those who can't wait that long, here are three suppliers of organic essential oils.

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Fragrant helpers from Sonnentor
Essential oils have been used for over 5000 years. The alchemists called the scents of the plants "quinta essentia", that is, quintessences. After all, the life force of the plant is in concentrated form in essential oils. That is why they are also used to gently support body and soul.
The organic pioneer SONNENTOR makes use of their diverse effects for the "Wieder gut!" Line. The essential oils provide support in a wide variety of situations. Three soothing varieties for strong defense, a clear head and free breath are in the “Fragrant Helpers” set. Simply open the box, select your favorite fragrance and put a few drops on the enclosed fragrance stone or in a fragrance lamp.

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Primavera

Primavera is one of the best-known manufacturers of essential oils that can be used both as a room fragrance and for personal care. The range of the aromatherapy pioneer now consists of 700 products. All products come from certified organic cultivation.

Just PURE

JustPURE, founded in 1996, sells face creams and bath salts as well as essential oils. These consist of 100% natural raw materials and are naturally grown organically. These oils are suitable for all skin types.

 

Fragrance diffuser

Danger! if you burn essential oils, e.g. in an aroma lamp, harmful substances such as fine dust, soot, carbon monoxide and sometimes even formaldehyde can be produced. Rather, rely on cold fogging using a fragrance diffuser. We introduce you to two here.

Valance terracotta stone diffuser

This terracotta stone diffuser from Volant not only looks unique, it is also unique: The diffusers are handcrafted and therefore no two pieces are the same. With this aroma diffuser, which is available in four different colors, you can easily distribute essential oils in your four walls.

Aroma Diffuser Altais by Pajoma

With this scented diffuser made of bamboo and glass you can improve your room climate with the push of a button. The design is simple and at the same time eye-catching: Standing on a small bamboo bowl is its own diffuser with LED color change. When the diffuser is filled with water, you only need to add three to four drops of your favorite oil and the scent will spread throughout your room.

It goes down like oil: Conclusion essential oil

No question about it: essential oils are all-rounders, which from now on should not be missing in your home. If used correctly, they can relieve colds, promote concentration, be used as protection against mosquitoes or simply ensure greater well-being with their soothing scent. If making your own essential oils yourself is too time-consuming, you are in good hands with our companies mentioned above. If you have decided on an oil and want to distribute its scent in the room, you should get a scent diffuser so that only the smell and no pollutants spread through your room. Have fun doing your own little aromatherapy.

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If you prefer to use oil for frying, read this too:
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