“Each essential oil has a complex mix of components, which work together in harmony to give a healing effect”
I work with a range of 70 of the highest quality, ethically-sourced essential oils, 10 carrier oils and base products so I am able to create a unique tailor-made essential oil blend for each individual’s requirements.
What is an essential oil and how is it obtained?
Essential oils are contained in the glands, veins, sacs and glandular hairs of aromatic plants. Herbs such as rosemary and lavender store an abundance of aromatic essence on the outside of the plant. Just run your fingers along a leaf or flower head to collect the aromatic oils on your fingers.
Essential oils are stored in different parts of the plant and may be found in the leaves, flowers, berries, bark, roots, fruit peel and seeds. In some cases, different oils can be obtained from more than one area of the same plant. For example, three different oils are obtained from the orange tree – Neroli from the orange blossom, Petitgrain from the leaves and Orange Oil from the orange fruit peel.
True essential oil is collected from plants by steam distillation. Steam is passed through the plant material and the volatile aromatic essence of the plant is carried with the steam to a collection vessel. The essential oil is separated from the condensed steam. Nothing is added or taken away.
True essential oils can also be obtained by a method called expression. This is used for collecting essential oils from citrus fruits. The citrus peel is simply pressed to release the oils which are stored there. Try this next time you peel an orange and breathe in the wonderfully uplifting aroma!
Why is it vital to use the finest quality essential oils in aromatherapy?
For both professional aromatherapists and the lay person using essential oils for themselves at home, it is vital for good health that only the highest quality, genuine essential oils are used and that these oils are whole and have not been altered or adulterated in any way.
Pure, unadulterated essential oils, which have been harnessed from lovingly grown plants in the right conditions, cared for using natural or organic methods and have been gathered in at the optimum time, will retain a high level of their healing properties. Each genuine essential oil has a complex mix of components, which work together in harmony to give a healing effect. These oils will be accurately identified and labelled using their latin botanical names.
Sadly, it is a reality that some oils sold as true essential oils today, have been adulterated in some way. That is to say that they are not the genuine article but have had other elements added to them or taken away, which destroys the oil’s therapeutic value and may cause skin sensitivities or other side effects.
It is essential to choose an essential oil supplier who takes all the measures necessary to guarantee the quality of the essential oils they are selling.
For this reason, my key suppliers of both essential oils, carrier oils and base products are:
The Aromatherapy Company (Organic) – www.thearomatherapycompany.co.uk
Quinessence – www.quinessence.com
Naissance – www.enaissance.co.uk
There are other quality suppliers out there. Just ask a few questions and ask for a sample to ensure you are happy that the oils are of the quality you should expect.