Three best essential oils
When you open a bottle of an essential oil, you'll quickly notice why many of these compounds are commonly used for aromatherapy. Derived from various parts of plants and fruits using gentle processes, essential oils maintain scents that linger. Putting a few drops in a diffuser can help uplift your mood by adding a pleasant aroma that fills your room and senses. If you think about how the scents you love can set a mood or bring back a fond memory, you'll know exactly how aromatherapy can improve your surroundings. However, essential oils offer many more benefits than their powerful scents.
Many essential oils have healing properties that can help improve skin and hair, relieve congestion, and induce relaxation to name a few. And while you certainly shouldn't expect an essential oil to take the place of sound medical advice or important medications, you can reap many benefits from quality oils that have been known to improve different ailments and conditions as far back as ancient times when plant-based remedies were first discovered.
Considerations when choosing essential oils
Regardless of the reason you want to use essential oils, the first step you should take when choosing the scents and formulas that will work for you is to look for features that are synonymous with quality products. After all, you won't get the most from the therapeutic benefits if oils have weak aromas, are diluted, or are not pure. Here are some features to consider that will help you decide.
Bottles: This is a basic feature, but you can't have an essential oil without a durable bottle. Top-selling manufacturers use dark-colored glass bottles that provide the most protection for maintaining the freshness and purity of the oils. Light-colored glass doesn't offer the same protection against light that can degrade the quality of the oil over time, and plastic can potentially leach into the oils.
Dispensers: Most essential oil bottles have tops that dispense a few drops at a time, so you can control how much or how little you want to use. Some also have droppers that make mixing easy, although these applicators often have longevity issues with repeated use.
Blends: While many oils are available individually, such as lemon or eucalyptus oils, some companies make blends that include several types of oils in one bottle. In addition to unique aromas, these blends are designed to offer the most effective results when used for easing one or multiple conditions.
Purity: Oils that contain added ingredients may have pleasant aromas, but they are not true essential oils. Look for details like 100% pure or natural in descriptions to ensure you are purchasing true essential oils.
Quality: In addition to purity, other indicators from the manufacturing process indicate quality. Undiluted oils offer the highest potency and strongest scents. Oils that are labeled organic are produced from plants that were grown without potentially harmful chemicals and pesticides.
Manufacturing process: Not all essential oils are processed in the same way. Oils that are produced using a cold-pressed process typically have the most beneficial properties and purest aromas. That's because this method entails extraction of plant-based oils as opposed to heating methods that can make diminish some oils effectiveness and strength.
When using essential oils, it's also important to keep in mind that they aren't regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. Although some oils may claim to be therapeutic-grade, this is not a guarantee of quality. However, when a reputable brand uses this terminology in product descriptions, this is an indication of close monitoring of the oils' purity, ingredients, and extraction process.
How to choose and use essential oils
When using essential oils, it's also important to keep in mind that they aren't regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. Although some oils may claim to be therapeutic-grade, it's not a guarantee of quality. However, when a reputable brand uses this terminology in product descriptions, this is an indication of close monitoring of the oils' purity, ingredients, and extraction process. That's why isn't important to buy quality oils by trusted brands.
Essential oils make a great addition to your daily routine, whether relaxation or relieving various issues such as stress or sleeplessness is your goal. But keep in mind that they are no substitution for a diagnosis if you have health complaints that are concerning you.
Uses of essential oils
What's ailing you? Regardless of your symptoms, there is probably an essential oil that will soothe them. Below are some common complaints and the oils that are known to relieve them.
Congestion and colds: Eucalyptus, rosemary, thyme, and oregano can all ease congestion and loosen mucus, either individually in mixed as a blend.
Stomach discomfort: Just a few drops of ginger, peppermint, or chamomile essential oil can calm upset stomachs, and can be taken diluted in other liquids such as tea.
Skin issues: Tea tree oil does a good job soothing scalp issues including breakouts and dandruff, and can be mixed with shampoo or conditioner. It also helps clear up acne, as does jojoba and lavender oils.
Hair concerns: Do you want to improve the looks of your locks? Rosemary and clary sage oils provide scalp stimulation that promotes hair growth, while almond oil moisturizes hair and chamomile enhances texture and shine.
Anxiety: If you want to take the edge off naturally, try lavender, sweet basil, lemon, jasmine, or a mixture of these four essential oils in a diffuser to help you relax and unwind.
Sleeplessness: Lavender and chamomile are two popular essential oils that offer numerous benefits, and inducing restful sleep is one them.
Aromatherapy: This is possibly the most popular use of essential oils, and the most versatile. There is no limitation to the variety you can use for this purpose - just let your preference and sense of smell guide you.
Prices of essential oils
Essential oils that are pure, cold-pressed, and organic are pricier than brands with lesser quality but well worth it if you want the best. Pure oils that offer robust scents and numerous therapeutic qualities typically fall in the price range of around $7 to $20 per bottle ranging in quantity from about one to three ounces. Cheaper oils are available, but chances are you will sacrifice quality for a lower price.
Essential oils also come in sets with numerous bottles that give you the opportunity to try different varieties and blends. However, these bottles are often smaller in comparison to those sold individually, as small as five milliliters. These sets run as low $20, but can be more than $100 for top-selling brands.
Q. How do I choose which essential oils to mix?
A. When it comes to mixing a variety of your favorite essential oils, your imagination is the limit. You can choose oils with similar scents such as those that are citrus-based or mix a variety of sweet and spicy for a unique blend. Mixing oils for specific symptoms, such as eucalyptus for congestion and lavender for insomnia, can target two issues at one time. For example, this combination is especially helpful when recovering from cold symptoms.
Q. Can I mix essential oils with other products such as lotions or shampoos?
A. Certainly! In fact, adding essential oils to lotions and shampoos is a great way to enhance the scents and healing properties of these products. All you need is about 10 to 20 drops of oil per 4 ounces of your favorite lotion or shampoos for optimal results.
Q. How long to essential oils stay fresh once the bottles are opened?
A. Although the shelf-life of essential oils varies depending on the variety, you can expect a bottle to last between one to five years once the seal is broken.
Essential oils we recommend
Best of the best: doTERRA Family Essential Kit
Our take: This kit a great choice for anyone who wants quality, therapeutic grade essential oils that can be used individually or mixed together for individualized blends.
What we like: Includes a variety of 10 oils that are favorites for various uses and medical conditions.
What we dislike: Expensive, but the upside to the high price is the superior quality they offer.
Best bang for your buck: Healing Solutions Best Blends Essential Oil Set
Our take: Some consumers prefer individual oils, but for those who like the idea of pre-mixed blends that are ready to use for various issues including headaches and relaxation, this set of six is a great deal.
What we like: Popular essential oils that are already blended for specific concerns.
What we dislike: Although the intended purposes and scents won't work for everyone, many customers rave about the balanced fragrances and targeted mixtures.
Choice 3: Artizen Peppermint Essential Oil
Our take: Peppermint essential oil not only smells great but has numerous uses, and this one also offers pure quality that's hard to beat.
What we like: One of the most popular and versatile essential oils available, as it can be used for aromatherapy, to calm digestive issues, and for soothing pain.
What we dislike: You only get one ounce for the price, however, so you may need to purchase it frequently if you like the results it delivers.
Jennifer Manfrin is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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