ESSENTIAL OIL SAFETY GUIDELINES
To avoid unwanted side effects always follow the safety guidelines when using any pure, potent & precious essential oils.
Do not use undiluted on the skin as you risk sensitisation & skin irritation plus unwanted side effects. More is not better when it comes to pure essential oils.
An essential oil blended at 3% into a carrier oil will have the same healing properties as a full strength oil. A dilution between 1-5% is recommended. Don’t waste your precious oils & money while risking nasty side effects by applying neat. There are some exceptions to this rule such as lavender & tea tree in very small doses & on specific areas such as on a burn or a sting.
Do not take internally – Today’s Aromatherapy ‘Code of Practice’ advocates the use of essential oils as external remedies only. They should not be taken internally. This is in accordance with the ‘International Federation of Aromatherapy’.
Taking pure essential oils internally can damage mucous membranes & delicate stomach lining as well as causing severe irritation.
An Aromatherapeutic Practitioner who is qualified to prescribe internal use of essential oils will often bypass the digestive system entirely, choosing to administer them via a suppository.
If in doubt ask a qualified Aromatherapist for advice before use. There are many helpful books available to educate yourself on the wonderful modality of Aromatherapy. There is some information on our Facebook page under ‘NOTES’ if interested on profiles of some essential oils and aromatherapy recipes, tips and suggestions.
KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN: If poisoning from an essential oil is suspected seek medical advice immediately or take them to a hospital emergency department. If the person is showing severe signs of poisoning such as loss of consciousness, telephone for an ambulance. Do not try to induce vomiting unless advised by a qualified health professional.
Below is some information on essential oil contraindications and recommended essential oils for specific ages and conditions:
High – Avoid Black Pepper, Lemongrass, Sage, Hyssop, nutmeg, thyme, lemon, rosemary and grapefruit.
Low –Avoid lemon balm, ylang ylang, lavender (very low), chamomile and marjoram
Epilepsy: Avoid Fennel sweet, hyssop, rosemary and sage
Diabetes: Avoid angelica
Phototoxicity: These oils should only be applied if client is not going to be exposed to direct sunlight within four to twelve hours.
Most Citrus oils can be phototoxic – studies indicate that blends with at 1% or less are safe – although always err on the side of caution.
Alcohol consumption: These oils will increase the effect of alcohol, Aniseed, Clary sage and Fennel.
Kidney problems – Avoid using juniper.
Pregnancy: While it is recognised that aromatherapy and massage can be very beneficial during pregnancy and delivery, there are very few oils that can be used with complete safety. Some oils have emmenagogue properties which means they can stimulate the uterine muscles so should be avoided. After the first 16 weeks Lavender, mandarin and neroli may be used in low dilution. 1 drop to 10ml of carrier oil.
Babies 6-12 months - Use no more than 1 drop of essential oil such as lavender, Chamomile Roman or mandarin to 10ml of jojoba oil or sweet almond oil. Avoid Peppermint and Eucalyptus as latest studies have shown to cause central nervous system and breathing problems in very young children – it is safer to avoid these oils until the age of five.
Children 1-5 years - Use no more than 2 drops to every 10ml of carrier oil. As with the babies recommendations - Avoid Peppermint and Eucalyptus as latest studies have shown to cause central nervous system and breathing problems in very young children – it is safer to avoid these oils until the age of five.
Children 6-12 years – Use no more than 3 drops pure essential oil to 10ml of carrier oil.
The Elderly – Careful consideration and the wellbeing of the patient needs to be addressed to determine which oils are suitable for the elderly person.
As a general rule the gentler oils are recommended at no more than a 1-2% blend at most.
Oils such as Lavender, Chamomile, Immortelle (helichrysum), Mandarin and Rose are ideal.
When choosing oils for specific conditions such as congestion or aches and pains and an essential oil such as eucalyptus is chosen then the radiata variety would be preferable to the more robust globulus.
Essential oils are a wonderful way to enhance the environment and wellbeing. Also the power of gently massaging an elderly person with a beautiful aromatic oil that they enjoy is highly recommended and beneficial for the mind, body & spirit.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me if there are any questions about the use and applications of aromatherapy.
It is an amazing modality but needs to be treated with respect as it takes a large amount of plant material to make one drop of pure essential oil.
I have included below a list of some Hazardous oils that should be avoided either due to their toxicity level or because they can cause severe dermal irritation. They include:
Almond Bitter Calamus
Camphor (Brown and Yellow) Cassia
Chervil Cinnamon Bark
Cistus Fennel bitter
Pennyroyal Pine (Dwarf)
Rue Sage (Common)
Tansy Thyme Red
This list is by no means exhaustive. Please ask if you have any queries on an oil or need advice on dosage and applications.
Silvana French HH dip (M.A)
Tea Tree Essential oil
Tea Tree essential oil is extracted via steam distillation from the needle like leaves of the plant. Native to Australia tea tree is one of the most medicinal of all the essential oils & amongst this group is the safest to use. Tea tree has powerful antimicrobial properties against all three of the infectious organisms, bacteria, viruses & fungi. When diffused in a burner it helps prevent the spread of infection. With its immunostimulant properties it is a must have for combating many illnesses & ailments. Overall tea tree is penetrating, medicinal & stimulating.
Main Therapeutic Properties: Antimicrobial, antiseptic, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, expectorant, immune stimulant, antiparasitic.
First Aid in a Bottle - Tea tree is active against all three categories of infectious organisms, bacteria, fungi & viruses, because of this it is a valuable oil on its own & used in synergy with other oils. Tea tree can be applied directly on a small area of the body e.g.: cold sore, pimples, nail (fungal infections) etc in very small amounts. Add 3-5 drops of tea tree to 5ml of carrier oil for an immune stimulating body or bath oil. Studies have shown that tea tree based body washes were found to perform better than conventional triclosan products.
Immune Stimulant - Tea tree is a very powerful immunostimulant, so when the body is threatened by any of the above organisms, tea tree can help the body respond. As mentioned use in an oil burner or vaporiser with other immune boosting oils such as lemon, eucalyptus & lavender to help reduce the spread of infection. Use in a bath & body oil with other immune stimulating oils. Can also be used in compresses as it helps the body sweat which is the body’s natural healing response to infection.
Skin Care - Tea tree is an important oil in combating acne as it helps reduce the bacteria that forms on the skin causing the problem. Add to your cleansing routine. A face spray made up with tea tree, witch hazel & lavender infused waters or hydrosols is great for those who play sport & don’t have time to wash their face after, spray the face & wipe off the excess sweat lightly.
Household Cleaning - Tea tree is the one stop cleaning product when it comes to disinfecting your home. Kitchen benches, bathrooms etc I like to add Lemon & Eucalyptus or our 'Bacteria Buster blend'. Make up a spray using filtered water; add between 30-50 drops to a 125ml bottle & use as a bench top cleaner. As the oils are insoluble in water, always shake before use. Add a few drops to the washing machine to help kill germs & dust mites. Add it to your dishwashing liquid and hand soaps when there is illness in the home to help prevent the spreading of germs.
Dust Mites - Freshen up mattresses & bed linen by making up a spray with tea tree & eucalyptus 30-50drops per 100ml of filtered water. Tea tree & eucalyptus have been shown to prevent dust mites. Adding Lemon can add extra freshness or just use our 'Bacteria Buster blend'
Mind & Mood - Tea tree is strengthening & warming. Inspires self confidence, restores focus & clears the mind of toxic emotions.
Safety Information – Possible skin irritant in high doses. Keep out of reach of Children. Do not ingest.
Tea tree is truly an amazing oil & is regarded as very safe. It is an invaluable oil to have in any Aromatherapy kit. Some find the scent of tea tree unappealing when vaporising or in body applications, to counteract this just add other essential oils such as lemon, eucalyptus or lavender as the synergy is powerful & you only need a small amount of tea tree to receive its benefits.
Peppermint Pure Essential oil Profile
Peppermint - mentha piperita
Peppermint essential oil is extracted via steam distillation from the flowering tops & leaves of the plant. Peppermint has fresh, bright, penetrating top notes & sharp camphoraceous undertones.
It is a much loved essential oil & has many uses in Aromatherapy.
- Antiphlogistic (Reduces Fever)
- Cephalic (stimulates & clears the mind)
- Febrifuge (Cools body temperature)
- Hepatic (Liver Tonic)
Applications & Uses:
Digestive system - Peppermint is best known for its ability to treat digestive issues. It stimulates bile production & stimulates & strengthens the liver. It helps to expel gas from the stomach & intestines easing nausea, stomach cramps, flatulence & indigestion. Peppermint can also help ease diarrhoea & irritable bowel syndrome. Add 2-3 drops to 5ml of carrier oil or unscented lotion & rub in a clockwise direction on the stomach area. diffusing peppermint or just inhaling two drops of the oil on a tissue can give instant relief. Peppermint is also known to relieve travel sickness.
Circulation - Peppermint oil is an excellent stimulant of the cardiovascular & lymphatic systems. Use in a massage oil for best results.
Pain Relief - Peppermint is a great choice when added to an unscented cream or carrier oil to ease muscle aches & pains, bruises & joint pain. It is an important component of our 'Soothing Muscle' Lotion & oil.
Concentration - Peppermints piercing aroma helps clear mental fogginess & increase concentration & mental clarity. It is also known to help clear mental fatigue. Peppermint essential oil is in our 'Clarity' Pure essential oil Blend.
Headaches - The analgesic & clarifying properties of Peppermint essential oil make it a valuable oil in treating headaches. Make a cool compress by Adding 2-3 drops of Peppermint oil & 3 drops of Lavender essential oil to a bowl of cool water, mix to disperse the oil & water, soak a wash cloth, wring out slightly & place across the forehead, avoiding the eye area & mucous membranes.
Fever/Colds & Flu - Peppermint can be used for its cooling effect in feverish conditions & induces sweating which reduces fever in a natural way. Add a few drops to a foot bath or add 2-3 drops peppermint oil to 5ml of carrier oil & rub on the bottom of the feet, back, shoulders & neck area. Can be used in a steam inhalation to relieve congestion. Add 1 drop peppermint & lavender to a bowl of hot water & breathe in the vapours. Vaporising can also relieve congestion. Use in low dilution. Do not use in children under five years of age.
Use in low concentration as it may irritate skin.
Avoid use near mucous membranes as irritation will occur.
Avoid use during pregnancy.
Do not use undiluted on skin
Do not ingest
Keep in dark bottles away from direct sunlight
Keep out of Reach of children - Do not use on Children under five years of age.
Do not use Peppermint (mentha arvensis) due to the toxicity level.
As usual always follow the safety guidelines with the precious & potent pure essential oils. Always consult a qualified Aromatherapist or Practitioner that has been trained in Aromatherapy.
Please always ask if you have any questions as I will always help when I can.
Silvana French HH dip (M.A)
BERGAMOT ESSENTIAL OIL PROFILE
Bergamot is a small delicate tree that is grown mainly in southern Italy & bears small fruit that has a similar appearance to oranges.
The oil is expressed (cold pressed) from the skin of the fruit just before it ripens.
The perfume is a beautiful blend of citrus & floral aromas. The oil has a delicate green colour with an aroma enjoyed by both Men & Woman alike, hence its use in many products & sought after by the perfume industry.
Properties: Antibacterial, Antiseptic, Deodorising, Disinfectant,
Detoxifying, Antispasmodic, Antidepressant, Diuretic, Uplifting.
DIURETIC: Due to Bergamots diuretic effect it increases the flow of urine & acts as an antiseptic & disinfectant to the genito-urinary systems & is used to treat the infection & inflammation that characterises cystitis & urethritis. Can be used on its own or added to a blend with Lavender, Chamomile & Tea tree. Dilute the oils 2-3 drops in 5ml of carrier oil, then massage into the lower abdomen in a circular, clockwise direction. This blend can also be added to a warm bath to relieve the pain & burning associated with this condition. Always consult your Doctor if there is blood in the urine or if pain is severe as this could indicate kidney damage.
UPLIFTING: Bergamot has an uplifting, antidepressant effect so is perfect for treating depression, anxiety & stress related conditions. It has a balancing & uplifting effect on the nervous system.
PMS: It is well know for treating pre menstrual syndrome (PMS) & hormone related conditions
INSOMNIA: As Bergamot is uplifting but not stimulating it is a good choice to use in blends for insomnia.
IMMUNE STIMULANT: It is also an immune stimulant & its benefits are enhanced when blended with other immune stimulating oils.
ANTIVIRAL: Bergamot may inhibit the Herpes simplex 1 (cold sore) virus by adding a drop directly to the sore at the first stage of tingling. Repeat every hour. The best method for the early stages is to wet a cotton bud & dispense a single drop to the tip & dab onto affected area. If the sore has dried & is crusty, add a drop to a natural balm such as our organic balm & apply as a barrier.
SKIN CARE: Bergamot is used for skin conditions such as acne, skin infections, eczema & dermatitis.
Use Bergamot in a Room spray to create a happy, uplifting environment in the home or office. Gives instant results.
Bergamot is a photosensitiser, which means that it increases the skins reaction to sunlight & makes it more likely to burn. To avoid this, limit sun exposure to 12-24 hours after application. Most products containing Bergamot do not contain enough to cause this reaction as studies have shown that it needs to exceed a certain level which is approx 1%.
Do not use undiluted on the skin
Do not ingest
Keep in dark bottles away from direct sunlight - the oil can be stored in the refrigerator to extend the shelf life.
Do not use oxidised oil or if the best by date has expired, on the skin.
Keep out of Reach of Children
Avoid during first trimester of pregnancy.
Silvana French HH Dip (M.A)
BLENDING ESSENTIAL OILS
Blending essential oils is about synergy or working together. The theory behind blending is the sum of the whole is greater than the individual parts. If you blend three or four essential oils with similar therapeutic properties, then you have created a synergistic blend that is more powerful than the individual oils used on their own. Experimentation & experience are key to the art of blending.
There are no hard & fast rules to blending just personal preference. As you become familiar with the different oils, you will intuitively learn & understand which oils blend well with others.
A useful tip to select the essential oils that you wish to use in your blend or before mixing them into a base oil such as sweet almond oil, put a drop or two of each essential oil onto a cotton swab. By holding the three or four swabs a little way from your nose & waving them around, you will get a good sense of what the blend will smell like. Then by taking one swab away or adding another you can fine tune your blend before actually making it up into an Aromatherapy product. This prevents expensive waste & is a useful way of helping you learn about the complexity of blending.
The blending process has been described as “learning to listen through your nose” which offers an interesting insight into the art of blending
I would recommend purchasing some Aromatherapy books for easy reference.
It is recommended to use a base note oil in your blends to prolong the scent, a mixture of top, middle & base notes are best as this creates a complexity to the blend as they evaporate at different rates.
Most of all enjoy the wonderful aromas that nature has created for us. We have easy access to such wonderful scents that brighten our world. Always let your sense of smell guide you, as is well documented, if a scent is not pleasing to you, then the therapeutic effect is greatly diminished & almost rendered useless. As the essential oils have so many similar properties, there is always one you will find that you like.
Be confident! The more you do it; the better attuned you become to what is benefiting you & your family.
Clay Scrub Mask
This is the recipe for an easy clay scrub mask that can be made up as you go. The benefit of this is that there are no preservatives & is a great way to adjust the recipe to suit your skin as needed.
You will need:
- Yellow Australian Clay with ground walnut shell.
- Infused water or floral water of your choice. (filtered water can be substituted) Use tea tree infused water for acne prone skin.
- Organic Jojoba oil
- Essential oils (see suggestions below)
All & Normal - Choose from Chamomile Roman or German, Geranium, Lavender, Neroli, Patchouli, Rose & Ylang Ylang.
Oily - Choose from Cedarwood, Bergamot, Cypress, Geranium, Juniperberry, Lavender, Lemon, Lime, Mandarin, Orange, Tangerine, Ylang Ylang.
Dry - Lavender, Geranium, Patchouli, Rose, Sandalwood, Roman or German Chamomile.
Depending on how many you are making the scrub for as to how much clay/walnut shell mix to use. Generally speaking a few tablespoons is ample.
Add the infused water & a teaspoon of Jojoba oil to form a smooth, fairly thick consistency. Add a few drops of your chosen essential oil & mix well.
Apply to the face, neck & chest area, leave to dry for approx 10mins, then wash off with warm water, exfoliating the skin as you wash off.
This mix leaves your skin feeling divine & helps eliminate the toxins & build up of dead skin cells which make the skin look dull & congested.
Use this mix once a week. Make a family ritual on a Friday or Sunday night! We still laugh every time we use it in our household & love the benefits.
All the ingredients are available on our website www.frenchessentials.com.au