Nowadays it seems like everyone has a slightly obsessed friend that “does” essential oils. She talks about essential oils all the time and has an oil remedy for everything. Her entire social media feed is filled with recipes for oil concoctions and she has an oil diffuser in every room of her house. She has what appears to be hundreds of tiny glass vials in her purse and she’s always rubbing stuff on her kids and husband. One day I woke up and realized that:
I am that crazy essential oil lady.
And I’m ok with that. I don’t go a single day without using essential oils in some form or fashion. What I’m not ok with is people using essential oils incorrectly. It makes me physically CRINGE. Here’s a few examples.
Lady at the park: “I just rub Lemongrass oil all over to keep bugs away”.
Me: “You dilute it first right?”
Lady at the park: “No, I use brand x,y,z and they are so pure you don’t have to dilute.”
Essential Oil Blogger: Just take 3 drops of grapefruit and 3 drops of lemon and drop them into a glass of water to lose 10 pounds in 1 month! Brand a,b,c is the only oil that’s so pure that you can easily ingest them.
Lady at my kiddo’s school: “My 3 year old has had the worst cough. I’ve been rubbing eucalyptus on his chest to clear him up”.
Why do these situations make me CRINGE so badly? They are examples of people using essential oils without respect. You see, essential oils are incredibly potent. It takes 1,000 pounds of orange blossoms to make just 1 pound of Neroli oil. That one little drop of essential oil is not only jam-packed with tons of goodness but it’s also potentially dangerous. It is so unbelievably easy to overdo it with essential oils. And overdoing it can lead to serious consequences such as respiratory distress, chemical burns and a lifetime of sensitivity.
And hear me out: purity has very little to do with it. Many companies will tell you to use an absurd amount of essential oils because they have the “purest oils on the market” but think about it, these companies stand to make a ton of money because their customers will use up essential oil faster and wind up purchasing in greater quantities. This means more money in their pocket.
So how do you use essential oils without this crazy essential oil lady CRINGING? Follow these easy and simple rules:
1. ALWAYS DILUTE - We dilute our essential oils for lots of reasons: to make them last longer, to cover a larger area, and to keep them from evaporating off of our skin. The most important reason though is to prevent chemical burns and increased sensitivity. This can happen at any time. Just because you’ve used peppermint oil for 10 years without diluting and have never had skin irritation doesn’t mean that it won’t happen in the future. You can develop a sensitivity at any time. As a rule of thumb, dilute 1-3 drops of essential oils in a teaspoon of carrier oil.
2. NEVER, EVER INGEST - Unless a doctor, naturopath or holistic professional who knows your complete medical history tells you to ingest, it is safer to just avoid it altogether. Ingesting essential oils, especially when mixed with water, can cause deterioration of the mucous membranes in your throat. Additionally, many essential oils are incredibly antibacterial and can cause bacterial imbalances in your gut. And if you have certain medical conditions, like high blood pressure, there are essential oils can exacerbate them. Plus, inhaling essential oils can be just as effective as ingesting them so avoid the danger and just take a deep whiff of oils instead.
3. AVOID ROSEMARY, PEPPERMINT & EUCALYPTUS AROUND KIDDOS – These 3 oils have a high amount of the constituent cineole which is why they work so well when you have congestion and a cough. However, in children under age 5, these oils have the potential to slow down breathing.
If you follow these 3 simple rules, you’ll be well on your way to using essential oils safely (and avoiding CRINGING looks from this crazy essential oil lady).
And if you’re looking for amazing essential oils that are tested for purity, sourced from small artisan farmers and are surprisingly affordable, check us out online here.