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What to Know Before Using Essential Oils

Everyone has to start somewhere on their journey of using essential oils, and using them almost always involves a learning curve! To help you have the most positive (and safe) experience possible, here are some handy tips for starting out:

  1. Essential oils are incredibly potent. When you are first introduced to essential oils, it can seem like the bottle size is somewhat underwhelming compared to the cost. However, over time you will realize that even one drop of essential oil is effective and useful. When you take an essential oil internally, one to two drops at a time is all you need. Take essential oils internally by putting a drop in a veggie capsule or by adding it to a glass of water. When applying topically, combine just a drop or two with a carrier oil like Fractionated Coconut Oil and massage into the desired area. Even when diffusing the essential oil, a few drops are sufficient.
  2. Avoid sensitive areas. Even though essential oils are generally beneficial to apply anywhere on your skin, avoid the following: on or near the inside of your nose, the inner ear, the eyes, broken skin, or other sensitive areas. If you have especially sensitive skin, keep reading for our tips on dilution. If your skin starts to turn red, burn, or itch you can remove the essential oil by gently wiping the area with a soft cloth, adding Fractionated Coconut Oil, and then alternating between adding your carrier oil and wiping it away until the reaction is neutralized.
  3. When in doubt, dilute. There are some essential oils—called Dilute or hot oils—that must always be diluted when used topically. For first time use of any of these hot oils, we recommend diluting one drop essential oil with 10 drops of Fractionated Coconut Oil, or whatever carrier oil you choose. Aside from the hot oils, you can dilute any essential oil, especially if you have sensitive skin. Diluting with carrier oils doesn’t dilute the benefits of an essential oil. In fact, dilution actually makes it easier for essential oils to absorb into your skin before they evaporate, making them potentially even more effective. The moral of the story: dilute for safety and success!
    Read more: Using Hot Essential Oils
  4. Before using an oil internally, check the label first. Always read the label to find out if an essential oil is approved for internal use. You can also check its shop page on our website as well as its spotlight page on our blog. If the essential oil includes supplement facts, it can be used internally. If not, the label will simply say, “For aromatic or topical use.” Never ingest single essential oils or essential oil blends that are not explicitly approved for internal use.
  5. Be aware that some essential oils react to UV light. which can cause your skin to sunburn more easily. To be safe, avoid UV light of any kind for up to 12 hours after applying essential oils with a photosensitivity warning. Always read the labels before applying essential oils to the skin to ensure that you are not at risk for skin irritation due to photosensitivity. 
    Read more: Summer Essential Oil Safety
  6. Children are more sensitive to essential oils than adults. When using essential oils with kids, always dilute the essential oil (no matter if it’s categorized Neat, Sensitive, or Dilute) and start by only applying essential oils to their feet. Diffusing essential oils is the best course of action for using essential oils with kids under two years of age. Make sure that you’re always supervising children when they use an essential oil, and store essential oils out of reach.
  7. There are so many uses for essential oils in everyday life. For whatever reason you started using essential oils, there are a myriad of ways to incorporate them into your daily life. Use essential oils for cleaning surfaces, doing laundry, creating the right aromatic atmosphere, and your beauty routine—the list just goes on from there.

What do you wish you had known about essential oils when you started? Share this post with your friends and add your own tips.

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