Before you use essential oils, it’s a good idea to know what they are and just how to use them. This page is designed to help you get started and includes ways to use essential oils, applying them on kids and where to get your oils.
What are essential oils?
Essential oils are natural aromatic compounds found in the seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers and other parts of plants. These compounds are very fragrant, and smell amazing. Imagine the sweet scent of a fresh lemon or orange. That beautiful scent is enhanced and bottled. And now think about the potent healing abilities right at your fingertips.
Essential oils are non water-based phytochemicals made up of volatile organic compounds. Although they are fat soluble, they do not include fatty lipids or acids found in vegetable and animal oils. Essential oils are very clean, almost crisp, to the touch and are immediately absorbed by the skin. Pure, unadulterated essential oils are translucent and range in color from crystal clear to deep blue. – doTERRA essential oils
Essential oils have been used in many cultures for medicinal and therapeutic benefits. In my house, I use them on a daily basis to prevent and heal illness. I also use them to feel grounded, lift my mood and increase energy. Essential oils play a key role in our family’s wellness.
Essential oil uses
Essential oils can be used in a variety of ways:
Cooking: Therapeutic-grade essential oils make a great addition to certain recipes. Enhance the flavor of cake with lemon or orange essential oil. Add peppermint or lavender essential oil to a honey simple syrup for a delicious addition to your coffee. Or add some lemon essential oil to whipped garlic butter and add to fish.
Cleaning: I make my own cleaners and add essential oils to all of them. To mop, I use a squirt of castile soap and a few drops of Purify and Melaleuca essential oils. For laundry detergent, I mix it all up in my food processor and add some drops of lavender and lemon essential oils. There are lots of essential oil combinations for your homemade cleaners.
Wellness: Essential oils are used a lot for prevention in our household. Lavender promotes good rest. OnGuard boosts our immune systems. Peppermint oil in water refreshes and energizes us.
Healing: Thankfully, we don’t experience much illness in our home, but when we do, we pull out our essential oils. Peppermint is great for stopping headaches and nausea. Melaleuca clears up ear infections. Lavender soothes the pain of burns.
Aromatherapy: Diffusing oils is a great way to experience the benefits of essential oils. Some of our favorites to diffuse are lavender, lemon (pretty much anything citrus) and peppermint.
How to use essential oils
Not all essential oils can be applied in the same ways. Some oils, like oregano and cinnamon, are very strong and would burn your skin if applied directly. Thankfully, there are a few ways to use essential oils:
Apply directly (neat): Essential oils that can be applied “neat” can be used without a carrier oil. One of these is lavender oil, which is great applied to the temples or forehead.
Dilute: Other oils must be diluted. My favorite oils for diluting oils in is coconut oil. Almond and grapeseed oils are also great. Some oils can be taken internally, but should be diluted in water first.
Diffuse: Many diffusers are available for diffusing essential oils into the air. Diffuse lavender in your room at bedtime to promote good sleep.
Capsule: Some essential oils are great for internal use to guard against illness, but can’t be diluted in water because it will burn your mouth. Encapsulate them in gelatin capsules that are available online or in health food stores. This can only be done with pure, therapeutic-grade essential oils.
Using essential oils with children
Essential oils must be used with care with children (and pregnant & lacatating women). Please do your research before using essential oils with them.
I apply essential oils differently with my children. Because they are much smaller and they’re bodies so sensitive, it’s important to remember this when using any natural treatment. So, when using them with my kids, I:
Dilute: Dilute a few drops of essential oil in a couple tablespoons of oil. We do this with Breathe essential oil to make a chest rub if the kids have coughs.
Diffuse: Diffusing an essential oil into the air can help calm kids or promote good sleep. Good ones to use are Serenity, Lavender and Lemon.
Apply on the bottoms of their feet: This is the method I use most. The bottoms of the feet have thicker skin and are a good place to apply oil for kids. (Putting them on their hands isn’t a good idea – they might touch their eyes or put them in their mouths).
Top essential oils
I use several essential oils on a regular basis, but there are a few in my home that come out of my cupboard more frequently than others.
Lavender: We use lavender to promote rest and soothe the pain of burns. I also add it to my insect repellent to keep bugs off our skin and garden.
Peppermint: I use this oil for upset stomachs and headaches. It’s also great added to honey simple syrup.
Lemon: This oil gets used a lot in our cleaning products. I also enjoy cooking with it and diffusing it in the air.
Citrus bliss: This smells like an orange creamsicle. It’s a great mood lifter and I just love putting it on my skin.
Melaleuca: I use this for ear aches, rashes and added to homemade cleaners.
Frankincense: This is my new favorite for bug bites and stings. It quickly relieves pain and itching.
DigestZen: Got an upset stomach? This oil works quickly works to soothe the digestive system.Pin It