Which Essential Oil Diffuser Should I Use?

A Guide to the Different Types of Essential Oil Diffusers


Using an essential oil diffuser is an easy, convenient, and mess-free way to take advantage of the benefits of essential oils. Want to fill your home with the aroma of essential oils? Try an essential oil diffuser. Want to fill your workspace or office with uplifting, energizing feelings? Try an essential oil diffuser. Want to create a calm environment that will help your kids fall asleep at night? Try an essential oil diffuser.

There are dozens of ways to use an essential oil diffuser to create a custom environment for you or your family. But which essential oil diffuser is best? Keep reading to learn everything you'll want to know before buying an essential oil diffuser.

Types of essential oil diffusers

There are four different types of essential oil diffusers, including nebulizing, ultrasonic, heat, and evaporative diffusers. Each essential oil diffuser has its own unique method for getting essential oils into the air so you can utilize their therapeutic benefits. Given these four choices, how do you decide which one would work best for you? To help you determine what to choose, we’ve broken down how each essential oil diffuser works and some pros and cons for each diffuser.

What is a nebulizing essential oil diffuser?

A nebulizing essential oil diffuser breaks down the essential oil into tiny particles through the use of a high velocity, pressurized air stream and jet nozzle. When the oil is released from the essential oil diffuser, it goes into the air in a fine mist. The fine mist created by the nebulizing essential oil diffuser does not alter the chemical composition or the scent—it diffuses the entire oil at once instead of in stages. (Some essential oil diffusers release the more lighter chemical components first and then the heavier components later.) The particle size is also small enough to be easily inhaled and used for aromatherapy.

Thinking of buying a nebulizing essential oil diffuser?

  • Pros of a nebulizing essential oil diffuser: Nebulizers use no heat or water, yet disperse the entire oil into the air for optimal therapeutic benefits.
     
  • Cons of a nebulizing essential oil diffuser: Nebulizers are often the most expensive essential oil diffusers to use, and even sometimes to buy. Because these diffusers use only the essential oil (no other substance such as water or heat), they use much more oil than other essential oil diffusers. Some models of nebulizing oil diffusers are noisy in comparison to other diffusers.

What is an ultrasonic essential oil diffuser?

This popular type of essential oil diffuser uses water and electronic frequencies to create a fine mist from the essential oil and water. Ultrasonic vibrations are created by a small disk under the surface of the water which causes the essential oil to break up into tiny micro particles.

Thinking of buying an ultrasonic essential oil diffuser?

  • Pros of an ultrasonic essential oil diffuser: Ultrasonic models only use a small amount of essential oil, and no heat is used to generate the mist in an ultrasonic essential oil diffuser. This method also can act as both a diffuser and a humidifier, a helpful feature if you live in a drier climate. There is very little to no noise associated with ultrasonic diffusers, making them perfect for nighttime use.
  • Cons of an ultrasonic essential oil diffuser: Only a small fraction of the mist is essential oil, and it depends on the air current already in the room to disperse the oil. If you already live in a more humid place, you may not want to add more water to the air with your essential oil diffuser.

doTERRA has a few different options for ultrasonic essential oil diffusers. Give the Lotus essential oil diffuser, Petal essential oil diffuser, Aroma Lite essential oil diffuser, or Lumo essential oil diffuser a try.

What is a heat essential oil diffuser?

As the name suggests, heat essential oil diffusers use heat elements to help the essential oil gradually evaporate into the air. Sometimes heat essential oil diffusers use the oil mixed with water. Some heat essential oil diffusers use very high levels of heat to cause a stronger aroma, however, the best heat diffusers will use a very low heat to avoid drastically changing the chemical constituents of the oils being diffused.

Thinking of buying a heat essential oil diffuser?

  • Pros of a heat essential oil diffuser: Diffusing using heat is an economical, yet efficient and silent way to spread the aroma of an essential oil throughout the room.
  • Cons of a heat essential oil diffuser: The heat used can change the properties of the oil at the molecular level. This means that the therapeutic or aromatic benefit of an oil may lessen or change entirely.

What is an evaporative essential oil diffuser?

Evaporative diffusion uses air flow to spread the scent of the essential oils into the area. A fan blows air through a filter, such as a tissue or a pad that has essential oils dropped onto it. The moving air causes the oil to evaporate quickly, and the air with the evaporated oil is blown into and around the room.

When you use an evaporative essential oil diffuser, you will get the oil in segments; the lighter essential oil components evaporate first, while the heavier components evaporate last.

Thinking of buying an evaporative essential oil diffuser?

  • Pros of an evaporative essential oil diffuser: Wind-blown diffusion can be a quiet way to quickly spread the oil’s aroma throughout the room.
  • Cons of an evaporative essential oil diffuser: It may not be as therapeutic of a method because all of the components of the whole oil are not diffused at the same time.

Regardless of the essential oil diffuser you choose, the aromas of essential oils have so much potential to influence your emotions and overall well-being for the better. In the end, each of these methods of diffusing will help you enjoy the benefits of aromatherapy in your home.

Ready to buy your own essential oil diffuser? Check out all the essential oil diffusers doTERRA offers by clicking below:

Need some tips for cleaning your essential oil diffuser? Read this blog post about essential oil diffuser maintenance.


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