What is an essential oil?
An essential oil is a substance extracted from part of a plant, such as the flower, bark, root, peel, or leaves. They are volatile oils, which means they evaporate when exposed to air and have a strong scent. Essential oils are different from cooking, or “fixed” oils in that they are not oily to the touch.
How do essential oils work?
Every plant contains naturally occurring bio-chemicals. When using essential oils, these bio-chemicals enter the body by inhalation (aromatherapy) or topically through the skin. The bio-chemicals then circulate throughout the body and affect our various body systems.
A great example of a bio-chemical that people are familiar with is nicotine from the tobacco plant. When a person smokes a cigarette or wears a nicotine patch, the nicotine gets into the bloodstream and affects breathing, heart rate, the brain, and other body functions. Similar to nicotine, the biochemicals from essential oils enter our bodies and have an effect on organ systems throughout the body.
Different plants have different bio-chemicals, giving each essential oil its unique therapeutic properties.
How do I use essential oils?
Many people like to use diffusers to continuously release small amounts of the oil into the air over a period of time. This is often referred to as aromatherapy. It creates a pleasant, aromatic, healing environment.
Another common use for essential oils is massage, which incorporates the benefits of touch, smell and topical absorption. Many essential oils can be irritating if applied directly to the skin, so it is important to first dilute them with a fixed oil, such as grapeseed oil.
By selecting essential oils appropriate for your skin type, you can create your own customized body care products such as facial toners, masks, scrubs or foot soaks. You can also add essential oils to store-bought products such as unscented shampoo, lotion, or body wash.
For a natural way to clean your home, you can use essential oils combined with other common household products to make homemade cleaning products.
What brand of essential oil does Nature’s Pharmacy carry?
We offer essential oils from NOW Foods. NOW ensures that all of their oils undergo extensive testing to ensure they are of the finest purity and quality.