Oil is a staple in daily life, from cooking food to protecting our skin from the dryness of the environment, we use several types of oils for different purposes almost every day. But the biggest use of oil in our regular routine is cooking. From frying to sautéing to garnishing, oil is a compulsory ingredient in almost every other dish we eat.
In fact, an average person consumes at least around 11 pints, which is 6.5 litres of cooking oil per year! Which to say is a significant amount for any ingredient in our food and compels us to ponder whether we are making healthy life choices or not.
We don’t mean to encourage you to opt for oil-less meals by bringing out healthy life choices. We simply mean to emphasize the fact that you should make conscious, healthy life choices – like choosing the right kind of oil for your meals. Surely hearing about consuming so much oil can make anyone gag – so imagine how damaging it can be for your heart and overall health if it is an unhealthy, high-cholesterol oil like canola and normal vegetable oils.
This is why it is important to switch to a heart-healthy oil and one such not-so-popular but healthy oil is sunflower oil. Most people don’t know much about sunflower oil. In fact, a vast percentage of our population doesn’t know such an oil even exists – like do we get oil from the floor or its plant? Therefore, we decided to talk about this underrated oil today.
Here is all you need to know about sunflower oil. From what it is to its different types, production methods, and various benefits, this is your guide to understanding sunflower and whether you should switch to sunflower oil or not.
What is Sunflower Oil?
As we said above, most people are unsure what sunflower oil really is. A lot of people don’t even know if the oil has anything to do with the plant or not – so let us tell you. Sunflower oil is a vegan, non-volatile, edible oil extracted from the plant’s seeds. So yes, the oil has something to do with the sunflower plant but unlike popular misconception, we don’t get the oil from the flower. The sunflower seeds used for the extraction of oil have high amounts of good fat, and so many regions of the world are consumed raw as a snack – but most of these seeds are pressed for oil production.
History of Sunflower Oil
There is a funny twist in the story of sunflower oil history that most people find surprising. We all know sunflowers originated in different areas of America – central and south America, but in most of North America, people occasionally consumed the seeds raw. But unlike the flower, the oil does not originate from America – or so people say.
Some parts of history claim Native Americans used to squeeze sunflower seeds for their oil, but there is no solid evidence to support this claim. However, on the other hand, it is rightfully believed that sunflower oil originated in Europe because that’s where it was first commercially produced.
The plant, discovered in America, arrived in Europe in the 16th century – however, it was until the 19th century that it became widely known that the seeds could also be a source of fat or oil. And that’s when in the 1800s, sunflower oil was first commercially produced in Eastern Europe, where it became a substitute for lard and butter. Since then, the oil has come a long way and millions of tons of sunflower oil are produced every year worldwide.
Production of Sunflower Oil
We know sunflower oil is produced by producing pressure on the seeds of the plant – but this is an oversimplified version of the procedure and the process involves much more complexity. Basically, sunflower seeds have a tough protective layer, like a shell on top which covers the soft and tender kernel present on the inside. This kernel is what contains the most nutritional value of the seed, which is why the first few steps of the process are focused on trying to achieve these kernels.
The beginning of the manufacturing process of sunflower oil involves cleaning, screening, and de-huling of sunflower seeds to obtain the most top-quality kernels so they can be used for oil production. Next, a complex centrifugal machine is used which spins at a rapid speed and helps in shaking out and separating the shells from the kernels. Even after this step, some shells may remain in the mixture but they also often have small amounts of oil.
After this, the sunflower seeds are ground and heated at high temperatures so they can be ready for pressing. The seeds are pressed in large quantities and, if done properly, can obtain up to 50% oil from the seeds – for example, pressing around 100 kilos of sunflower oil can easily produce up to 45 liters of oil. The additional remaining oil is extracted through solvents such as hydrocarbons and distillation – which is a process that can refine a product.
Sunflower today has become one of the most commonly produced oils worldwide and the amount produced everywhere has been increasing exponentially, except for this year, 2022. Russia and Ukraine have been the top producers of sunflower oil for years now; however, the war between the two countries this year, has led to a global shortage of sunflower seed oil.
Nutritional Value and Types of Sunflower Oil
Sunflower oil is available in several varieties, all distinct based on their nutritional value. Typically, all varieties of sunflower oil contain approximately 14 grams of fat per tablespoon -among which most is unsaturated, making it a good source of healthy fat. But the different types of sunflower oil seeds have different fatty acid profiles, and the oil has gone under selective breeding to yield such seeds.
When it comes to home cooking, there are three main types of sunflower oil, each with varying compositions of fatty acids – most importantly oleic acid and linoleic acid (which monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, respectively). Here are the three main types of sunflower oil:
● High-Oleic Sunflower Oil:
This type of sunflower oil has around 82% oleic acid, which as the name suggests, is the highest among all other types. Along with it, it has 9% linoleic acid. This means in 1 tablespoon, there is a total of 14-gram fat (1.4 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 gram of polyunsaturated fat, and 11.7 grams of monounsaturated fat).
● High-Linoleic Sunflower Oil
This type of sunflower oil has more linoleic acid as compared to oleic acid – as the percentage for linoleic acid is 60% and oleic acid is 30%. This means that there are around 1.5 grams of saturated fat per tablespoon, 9.2 grams of polyunsaturated fat, and 2.7 grams of monounsaturated fat.
● Mid-Oleic Sunflower Oil
Unlike high oleic sunflower oil, this type has a moderate amount of oleic acid but still more oleic acid as compared to linoleic acid. This type of sunflower oil contains about 65% oleic acid while just 25% linoleic acid, which means in 1 tablespoon of oil, there are 1.2 grams of saturated fat, 3.9 grams of polyunsaturated fat, and 7.8 grams of monounsaturated fat.
There is another lesser-known type of sunflower oil, which is unhealthier than all the other types and so is not preferred for cooking. This type is called the High stearic sunflower oil, which contains around 72% oleic acid and 18% steric, which is saturated fat. This oil is deemed unhealthy because it has high volumes of trans fats.
Uses of Sunflower Oil
● Cooking and Food Preparation
So far this article has only focused on one main application of sunflower oil: cooking food. Refined sunflower oil is suitable for all types of cooking, from low-temperature sauteing to high-temperature deep frying; you can use the oil for numerous cooking-related purposes.
Refined sunflower oil, due to its neutral flavor and aroma, acts like typical vegetable oil when it comes to frying and cooking. While on the other hand, unrefined sunflower oil is perfect for salad dressing and garnishing.
Sunflower oil is highly versatile and is also used as a fuel. It can be used in diesel engines, mixed with diesel in the tank. Basically, the oil is a functional vegetable oil fuel that can be blended with normal diesel, or you can process it into biodiesel, which can be used for motors running.
● Cosmetic Industry
Like many other types of oils, sunflower oil is also popular in the cosmetic industry. PEG-10 is a glyceride found in sunflower oil that has a pale yellow color and a fatty odor. This glyceride is commonly used in cosmetic formulations.
Health Benefits of Sunflower Oil
You must have realized by now that sunflower oil is a common cooking oil, here are some health benefits for replacing your typical vegetable oil with sunflower oil.
● It is a Heart Healthy Oil
As discussed above, sunflower oil is an amazing source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats – and these fats are great for your heart health. This is especially true for linoleic acid, which is unsaturated fat that has great benefits for your heart. It has been identified that this fat helps lower the risk of coronary heart disease in people, keeping their cardiovascular health in check.
Other than that, sunflower oil is a good source of HDL (high-density lipid), which is the good cholesterol that our body needs. Both oleic acid and linoleic acid have numerous benefits for our health, and consuming sunflower oil helps meet the needs of our body for both unsaturated fatty acids.
● Greta Source of Vitamin E
Sunflower oil is infamous for its nutritional value; the oil is a great source of vitamin E and K but especially vitamin E, which itself is highly beneficial for our health. Vitamin E helps antioxidants in our body that help fight free radicals present in our cells. Moreover, vitamin E deficiency can be very bad for our brain and nerves, which is why consuming sunflower oil is linked to a healthy brain and nerve cells.
● Good for Skin
Other than the benefits of using sunflower oil in your food, there is one more use of sunflower oil which is using it topically. You can apply sunflower oil on your skin as it can provide hydration to your skin and help repair the skin barrier. It can also help tend to acne, as a deficiency of linoleic acid is one of the biggest causes of acne.
Side Effects of Sunflower
Even though sunflower oil has various benefits and is highly recommended for use, there are some side effects of the oil that everyone must consider before switching to it. Sunflower oil can cause an increase in the body or even lead to the risk of obesity because even though sunflower oil is healthy, it does have a high proportion of fatty acids and can be considered a high-calorie oil. Hence, people with the tendency to gain weight can find it difficult to lose weight when consuming sunflower oil on a daily basis.
Other than that, some researchers claim there is a risk of cancer attached to the use of sunflower oil in high-heat cooking. As oil is heated at high temperatures (for example, for frying), it emits cooking oil fumes. These fumes contain toxic substances such as aldehydes, and these aldehydes pose a risk of cancer.
Sunflower oil is linked to generating high amounts of aldehydes as compared to other oils, which is why experts recommend not using oils for high-heat cooking.
There is no doubt that sunflower oil is one of the most versatile oils– from its use in the kitchen to its application in the kitchen, there is no limit to the many uses of sunflower oil. Other than that, it is also a great heart-healthy oil that everyone must add to their routine.
However, while keeping its benefits in mind, it is important to note the oil’s side effects and ensure not to overdo its use. Using a moderate amount of sunflower oil in your routine is the best way to enjoy its health benefits without putting yourself at any potential risk of side effects.
Honey is one of the most common ingredients used in most sweet and savory dishes. It usually comes on top of our grocery list, and most people have a bottle (sometimes even more than one bottle) of honey in their house. It is such a popular household item that we all feel like we already know too much about it. What really is there to know about honey, right? We know it’s golden brown, sweet, and comes from bees – what else is there to know?
Well, we are sure that’s how most people think, but today we are here to surprise you. If that’s about all the knowledge you have regarding honey, then you are at the right place. Honey may look like a simple edible, readily available everywhere and a popular, key ingredient in most dishes. But ,in reality, it is much more than that. Honey is actually quite a complex substance; you’ll be shocked to know the amount of work that is put into that one bottle of honey sitting in your kitchen cabinet.
This syrupy sweet liquid is full of secrets and if you want to uncover some interesting facts about honey, you must keep reading. Today, we are discussing all there is to know about honey, from its production to its types to its health benefits. So let’s not waste any more time and get started!
What Really is Honey?
Honey is a sweet liquid made by bees. But like we said above, that’s not all there is to know about honey. Honey is a viscous, syrupy substance made by several kinds of bees, including honey bees, and not just honey bees. It is thin and golden in color but different types of honey can be seen lightly different in color grades. This sugary liquid is said to be achieved from bees, but actually, it originates from plants, more specifically, flowers and their nectar.
The type of flower is basically what determines the color and taste of the different types of honey. Let’s learn more about how honey is produced and how it reaches us.
All About Honey Production: How is Honey Made?
Since we were kids, we have only heard honey bees make honey but how do they do that? Do they produce it from their body or do they all just join hands and manufacture this thing? Well, it’s neither of these situations; honey comes from flower nectar, and bees are merely storage and transporters in this process. Shocked? Don’t be; it’s not like bees don’t play a key role here. They are quite hardworking and still play a vital role in transporting and storing honey.
· Step 1: From Flowers to the Bees
Honey comes from flowers that contain nectar – a sugary liquid that is then collected by bees. Adult worker bees fly over various flowers and obtain nectar. They extract this nectar from the flowers by sucking the flower using their long tube-like tongue, which helps them suck the nectar, which they then store in their stomach, called the honey crop. Here in the honey crop is where bees begin making the honey.
After ingesting the nectar, bees slosh it around and modify the pH, which helps the nectar mix with the enzymes present in the abdomen. This helps transform the chemical composition of the nectar and allows it to break down into simpler sugars, like fructose, which is more suitable for long-term storage and gives honey its sweet taste – later. This whole process takes about 21 days, which the bees spend searching for suitable flowers and collecting the nectar.
Is Honey Really Bee Barf?
As a kid or even growing up, we have all heard this joke that honey is actually bee vomit, which is not entirely a lie. But if you are grossed out by it, you shouldn’t be. Technically, honey is not bee barf because after collecting nectar, bees store it in their special “second” stomach. This stomach – as mentioned, the honey crop, is just honey. So even though they throw it out of their mouth after extracting the nectar, since the nectar never goes into their actual stomach, honey cannot be called bee barf or bee vomit.
· Step 2: From the Bees to the Hive
After returning back to their hives, bees continue their honey-making process. What happens here is that honeybees pass around the nectar to other, younger worker bees by regurgitating the liquid (basically, vomiting it out) into other bees’ mouths. This process continues, from bees to other bees until all the partially digested nectar is deposited into the honeycomb.
Once in the hive or the honeycomb, the honey is a thin viscous liquid – quite the opposite of the thick honey we see on our breakfast tables every day. But this doesn’t involve any technology; this is also another job carried out by the honeybees. To remove the excess moisture from the honey, all the bees together start fanning their winds, which helps speed up the evaporation process and gets rid of extra water.
When about 80% of the water is evaporated from the comb, in order to guarantee the correct conservation of their honey, bees seal the comb – also called cell sealing, using another liquid from their abdomen. This eventually helps harden the beeswax and helps preserve the honey present in the comb for many years to come.
· Step 3: From Honeycomb to Us
The process of making honey ends here but how does honey reach us? Well, this is where beekeepers come into play. Beekeepers harvest the honey by collecting honeycomb frames and scraping off the wax cap created by the bees that sealed off the honey cell by cell.
Once these caps are removed, the fame is paced in an extractor, which is basically a centrifuge. This centrifuge spins the frame and forces the honey out of the comb. Once the beekeepers do the extraction, it is strained to remove unwanted particles and any remaining wax. Sometimes, beekeepers also use heat to quicken this process.
Straining s the last step of bee extraction; once that’s done, all there is left to do is transfer it to a bottle and label it so it can be sold in the market! Now, this is a natural process, but many beekeepers who want to harvest honey place honeybees near flowers and give them time and environment accordingly to obtain honey.
Types of Honey
All the honey present in this word is achieved by the same process mentioned above, so what makes one type of honey different from the other? Remember how we said the type of flower used for nectar plays a key role in honey production?
Well, that’s because the type of flower determines the color and taste of the honey – and each flower helps in producing a different type of honey.
However, sometimes you might find that the honey achieved from the same flower type doesn’t have the same uniform taste. This happens because there are two more factors affecting the consistency in the taste and color of the honey – and these factors are temperature and rainfall level.
Keeping all this in mind, let’s talk about some popular types of honey worldwide.
· Acacia Honey
Acacia honey is one of the most common honey varieties. Made using the nectar extracted from black locust trees, aka false acacia trees, this type of honey is clear and light in color. It has a delicately sweet flavor with a hint of vanilla because it is low in sucrose but high in fructose content. This is one reason it is popular with diabetic people and is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. It is suitable for cooking, baking, and table use.
· Clover Honey
Another widely available honey variety is clover honey, which has the largest annual production. The honey is distributed across the world and is mainly produced in North America (Canada and US), Sweden, and New Zealand.
Clover honey also has a light golden color, a mild taste, and a subtle hint of cinnamon. This honey is considered a classic because it is multi-purpose and is widely used as an ingredient in a variety of dishes and sauces.
· Buckwheat Honey
Contrary to the two varieties of honey discussed above, buckwheat honey is dark and bold in appearance. It is considered the strongest honey in the world and is a great source of many essential nutrients and iron.
As compared to other light-colored varieties, buckwheat honey is also rich in antioxidants. This honey is native to Japan, the USA, France, and the Netherlands and is known for its rich amber color and earthy aroma. Its taste is heartier and stronger, which is why it is preferred in honey cakes, sauces, and bread.
· Eucalyptus Honey
Extracted from flowering eucalyptus trees, this honey is produced in Australia and exported across the world. It is distinct from all other honey varieties as it has a sweet flavor and appears unique with cool undertones as well. The honey has a medicinal scent and is known for its healing properties. It is used to cure cold-like symptoms such as cough, sore throat, and other upper respiratory infections. This honey is perfect for table use as well as cooking and baking.
Benefits of Consuming Honey
Honey has been a major part of our diet forever, there is a reason we all find a bottle of honey in our kitchens, and it is kept aside most of our breakfast dishes – ever thought why? Surely, the unique sweet taste of the edible liquid accounts for its popularity, but one reason why it is endorsed so much by our elders is its amazing and countless health benefits.
Let’s talk about some of them:
· It is Extremely Nutritious
Extracted directly from plants and made with no chemically added preservatives, honey is one of the purest edible items available on the market these days. It is high in nutrients and minerals that can help you fill a gap in your nutrition.
Even though it is pure sugar, it is worth noting that it contains traces of protein, fats, and riboflavin as well. Moreover, it is also rich in the healing-promoting plant compound called polyphenol.
· Great Source of Antioxidants
As mentioned above, honey is a great source of antioxidants – some varieties more than others. Antioxidants are important to help get rid of free radicals from our bodies. These free radicals build up in cells and cause damage in the body, which can contribute to premature aging, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes. However, people consuming honey in their regular diet can avoid these issues.
· It has Amazing Healing Properties
Honey has amazing healing properties; it promotes wound healing and can help with burns. Although this practice is not very common today, it was once a popular method in ancient Egypt to help people with various skin issues earlier. However, even today, honey is recommended to many diabetic patients to help with foot ulcers that may lead to amputation.
· It Helps With Cold Symptoms
As discussed above, honey is a great source of comfort for cold-related symptoms. It can help suppress cough and other respiratory problems. If you have a sore throat, you can have a spoonful of warm honey, and it will ease your pain within minutes. This is one reason why honey ginger tea is the most recommended for patients with cold.
Honey, a common name, is still something most people don’t know much about. It is truly something full of secrets, especially about how it is made. We are sure today, we were able to help you get rid of many misconceptions about the production process of honey, and help you learn new and interesting things about the sweet, edible, syrupy liquid that you must have never heard before!
The benefits of essential oils exceed far beyond aromatherapy. When used around the house, essential oils not only keep the house smelling fresh and clean; they also reduce and treat fungal growth from various surfaces. Their subtle yet calming fragrance also helps relieve the stress of those who occupy the house.
Being natural, they’re also safer than most synthetic fragrances and can be used in various ways. Let’s take a look at some of the uses and benefits of essential oils around the house:
Essential Oil Uses in the Kitchen
You can get several benefits from using essential oils in your kitchen. Some of these are:
Various essential oils such as lemon, lavender, tea tree, peppermint, etc., act as disinfectants when applied to a surface. You can make your homemade surface disinfectant for kitchen counters and cabinets using these essential oils. Drop a few drops of any of your preferred essential oil in a spray bottle. Fill the bottle with clean water and shake it every time before use.
You can use this natural disinfectant safely in the pantry as well. It will also keep the surfaces clean for you to chop vegetables or cut fruits. It will also make food items last longer in a germ-free zone.
Enhance Flavor in Food
If you want an extra kick of flavor in your food, you can add any food-grade essential oil for the purpose. Peppermint, thyme, ginger, oregano, fennel, rosemary, and cinnamon are some common essential oils safe for ingestion.
You can also benefit from essential oils such as lavender, cardamom, and wild orange by adding them to tea. The effects of these teas can vary from calming to energizing and can be taken according to one’s needs.
Since a drop of essential oil in food equates to a teaspoon of the herb, you will need to adjust accordingly.
Natural Pesticide in Kitchen Garden
Essential oils make safe pesticides for your kitchen garden. Using essential oils such as orange, cinnamon, lavender, rosemary, and peppermint can keep away bugs, snails, slugs, and other insects. They can also prevent fungal growth in the plant soil. Essential oils also keep the soil moisturized and prevent it from drying out easily.
However, essential oils do not provide any growth benefits to plants. Since oil and water never truly mix, essential oils are separated from the water after adding them to the soil. They will not be picked up by the plant roots either.
Natural Rinse for Produce
Since essential oils get rid of pests and fungus for plants in your home garden, they can also rinse off fresh produce you bring from the supermarket. All you will need to do is fill up your sink with clean water and add a few drops of lemon or wild orange essential oils to it.
You can also add half a cup of vinegar to this water as vinegar is also a safe disinfectant. Let the produce sit in this water for about 10 minutes before rinsing it thoroughly with fresh water.
Alternatively, you can make a disinfectant spray by adding the same ingredients to a spray bottle. Thoroughly spray this mixture on freshly bought produce, let sit for about 10 minutes, and rinse thoroughly before storing.
Essential Oil Uses in the Bathroom
Essential oils can be used in bathrooms for a variety of purposes. Some of these uses are:
Essential oils can be used in bathrooms as natural air fresheners. Add a few drops of your favorite essential oils to a scent diffuser and place them in your bathroom for clean air. You can get the same benefit by making a natural air freshener too.
Don’t forget to shake the air freshener before using it since oil and water tend to separate. You can keep it in your bathroom’s medicine cabinet for easy access.
Most people keep litter trays for their cats in the bathrooms too. If you have one in your bathroom for your furry friend, switching to a natural air freshener will be a beneficial choice. Compared to store-bought air fresheners, essential oils are much safer to use in the presence of pets.
Natural Tile Cleaner
Many citrus essential oils, such as lemon, wild orange, lime, and lemongrass, are excellent at removing grime and cutting down on the dirt. You can add a few drops of any available citrus oil to your store-bought tile cleanser for improved cleaning and a cleaner smell.
Eucalyptus essential oil and peppermint essential oil work as natural and safe disinfectants. You can use these essential oils as surface disinfectants on various surfaces of your bathroom, from the shower to the toilet to the bathroom counter. Their strong smell helps keep away bugs and insects as well.
You can use them by either mixing them with water or by adding them to a store-bought disinfectant.
Essential Oil Uses in Medicine Cabinet
Essential oils have been used as natural remedies for various everyday health concerns for centuries. Some of these are:
Cure for Sunburn
Chamomile, vitamin E, and vitamin C essential oils can help cure sunburns. These essential oils are commonly used in various sunscreens and sunburn healing ointments. You can benefit from the calming properties of these essential oils in a cool water bath.
Drop a few of each of these essential oils and let your skin soak its benefits and heal. Pat dry your skin after rinsing it under cold water. Repeat the process every other day to speed up your skin’s healing process.
You can also diffuse lavender oil in the air to treat sunburn. This unconventional method is a safe and popular way of helping the body heal itself. Lavender oil is safe to inhale and ingest and promotes healthy sleep.
As those with sunburn are advised to get as much rest as they can, lavender helps with calming them down and helping them sleep. The lavender essential oil also contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that help skin regenerate.
You can easily make a natural sanitizer with essential oils, aloe vera gel, and alcohol. Combine 3/4th of alcohol with 1/4th aloe vera gel and mix them well. Add 2-5 drops of your favorite essential oil to make it smell good.
You can also choose essential oils such as tea tree or wild orange to enhance the effect of your DIY sanitizer. Tea tree and wild orange essential oils are both great for treating and preventing fungal and bacterial infections. Since they are both rich in antioxidants, they can be safely used on the skin and promote new cell generations.
The anti-inflammatory properties contained by most essential oils make their use widespread in aromatherapy. Eucalyptus, peppermint, and lavender essential oils are especially popular for this purpose.
It is important to mix these essential oils with carrier oils before applying them to the skin. When massaged onto the skin, they help relieve muscle pain and reduce redness and swelling. They also help irritated skin heal and induce a calming and soothing effect.
Clary sage, cedarwood, lavender, lime, and lemongrass essential oils can significantly help control body odor.
You can also mix various essential oils to create a fragrance you like. Blend this mixture or a few drops of your preferred essential oil with baking soda to make a paste. Mix this paste with melted coconut oil. Keep stirring until the mixture sets. Apply a pea-sized amount of your homemade, all-natural deodorant to your armpits every day after morning and evening showers and before sleeping to see the best results.
Inhaling certain essential oils such as sweet orange, eucalyptus, lemongrass, and cedarwood can help improve allergy symptoms. You can use these essential oils in aromatherapy practices to get the maximum benefits. Add one to two drops of each essential oil to the diffuser and take deep breaths in the clean, aromatic air. Repeat the process twice a day for a speedy recovery.
Essential Oil Uses for Improved Living
Besides the uses mentioned above, essential oils can also be used for several uses around the house. The easiest and most beneficial of these are:
Safe Replacement for Candles
Essential oils can make for easy and safe replacement of scented candles. Scented candles are very popular for their easy aromatherapy effects around the house. However, candles can be unsafe, especially with pets or kids around. They can also be dangerous in the absence of pets or kids if placed near flammable objects.
On the other hand, essential oil diffusers can provide the same benefits without any danger. Both classic diffusers with sticks and electronic ones are completely safe for use. They don’t pose any fire risk, even if knocked down by a pet or kid.
With an essential oil diffuser, you can easily prepare your room or the entire home to wind down in the evenings. You wouldn’t have to worry about leaving them unattended or a fire starting in your house. You can add enough water to keep it going and relax with a cup of tea.
Refreshes Trash Bins
The benefits of essential oils reach your trash can too. Don’t worry; you won’t have to throw away the essential oils for the purpose. Get a bunch of cheap cotton balls and toss one, added with essential oils, in your bin every time you put in a new trash bag in it.
You can choose the essential oil depending on the trash can’s location in your home. However, we suggest adding essential oils with antifungal and antibacterial properties, such as lemon, lemongrass, peppermint, and tea tree. These will not just make your trash smell nice but will keep it clean of any possible pests as well.
Add a few drops of your preferred essential oils to lint balls or dryer balls to make your laundry smell nice. It’s an easy way to make freshly washed clothes smell fresh and fragrant.
Keeps Away Insects
You can make a safe and easy insect repellent by using essential oils. The homemade insect repellent will be safe to use anywhere in the house, including pantry and kitchen cabinets and around children and pets.
All you will need for a safe insect repellent is some witch hazel or vodka, clean water, and drops of certain essential oils. We recommend using citronella, tea tree, and peppermint essential oils as their combination makes the most effective insect repellent. Pour everything in a spray bottle and shake it well before use.
Improve Self-Care Routine
There are numerous benefits of essential oils in self-care. Various essential oils can be used to treat different hair problems. They can relieve dandruff, get rid of head lice, promote hair growth, and make hair softer. On the skin, their benefits can vary from reducing acne to removing acne scars and from promoting new skin cell generation to making skin soft and supple.
To utilize essential oils in self-care, you will need to look for those best suited for your skin and hair types. However, rose, lavender, ylang-ylang, and chamomile essential oils suit almost every hair type and skin type and are easier to incorporate into any self-care routine.
Keeps Your Home Smelling Fresh
A refreshing and clean-smelling home can do a lot of good things for you. Depending on the essential oil you use, they can improve your mood and help you feel energized or calm. You will feel more at home at your home when it smells great.
Finally, don’t forget to take the necessary precautions while using essential oils. Though they are safe to use, they shouldn’t be used on their own without a carrier. After use, store them in a safe and cool place. Direct sunlight can affect the quality of essential oils, and you wouldn’t want such beneficial oils to go to waste!
Moreover, make sure to check the quality before buying. Always look for the country of origin on the label, a dark glass bottle container, and ethically sourced essential oils.
The covid-19 pandemic has already lasted longer than anyone anticipated. While the governments and scientists are doing their best to take the world back to the old normal, some research suggests that the pandemic can continue for another year or so. As much as all humans are always capable of adjusting to new environments as evolutionary organisms, the pandemic has brought many uncertainties that have made focusing on health a little challenging.
However, it’s important to stay hopeful. In fact, staying hopeful and active and eating healthy is all it takes for anyone to not let the pandemic get to them. Therefore, we have expanded on these three important actions and compiled a comprehensive guide on staying healthy during the pandemic for our readers to help them get through these challenging times. Let’s begin:
Tips for Eating Healthy During the Pandemic
Healthy eating habits alone can work wonders for most people in their pursuit of staying healthy during the pandemic. Medicine men from the past used to believe that gut and mind are related and that whatever one eats directly impacts their mind and mental health. While we now know that there isn’t a direct connection between the mind and gut, we also know that the whole body is interconnected and that what one eats affects one’s overall health.
However, we recommend staying away from guides that tell you what to eat and what not to eat. Every individual’s body is different and can have slightly different needs than others. Moreover, people can have food allergies or reactions and availability or accessibility issues that can make it very difficult to have one guide for all of humanity.
Eating healthy is more a habit than a task. Here are five tips that you can apply to adopt healthy eating habits no matter your individual dietary needs:
It is very easy to keep on snacking when one is at home all day. Eating out of boredom is common among people. Portion sizes can also increase when one has all the time to eat, putting one on the road to obesity without realizing it. Due to the extensive availability of time and inaccessibility to food outlets during the pandemic, many people also picked up cooking and baking, which massively increased the portion sizes available to them. The US is already infamous for its serving size. There’s no need to add to them.
Include Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables don’t only contain fewer calories. They also contain several essential vitamins and minerals needed for a healthy, functional body. Swapping bread and rice with vegetarian options such as potatoes and cauliflower rice will keep meals filling, adding nutrients to them. Fruits make a great addition to any breakfast too. You can also swap processed snacks with fresh fruits or vegetables with yogurt dip.
Get Fresh Produce
Swapping fresh produce with canned produce is an easy method of staying healthy during the pandemic. If you can, try to get your weekly produce from the farmers’ market or directly from the farms. Fresh produce has a higher nutritional value than canned or dried produce. As fresh produce doesn’t last as long either, you will be motivated to consume it before it goes bad.
Turn Cooking into an Activity
The problems of boredom eating and eating junk food can both be resolved with this one habit. It will build up your cooking skills and limit fats, cheese, salt, and MSG in your food. It will also limit the portion size and let you spend time on something that will benefit your health.
Add Some Nuts
Nuts, dried fruits, and edible seeds work great as healthy and filling snacks. They are natural and much healthier than processed snacks, which carry high quantities of salt. You can also add nuts, dried fruits, and seeds to your breakfast bowls or desserts for some extra healthy crunch.
Tips for Staying Active During the Pandemic
People struggled to stay active before the covid-19 pandemic too, so it’s no surprise that fitness took a backseat for many when they weren’t allowed to gather together and motivate each other for it. Many others also find it difficult to work on their own or inside the home. Living in lockdown and being barred from seeing others also made several people not care about how they looked.
However, fitness and looks aren’t as deeply connected as many people. While it’s true that fitness makes one appear more attractive, it is more about one’s health than their appearance. Good physical health also helps with keeping mental health in check. It also directly improves vital bodily functions and lowers the risk of getting sick.
While it may be difficult for you to stick to an exercise routine in the pandemic, staying active in your day-to-day life can help you stay fit too. No matter your lifestyle and daily activities, the following five tips can help you stay active:
Take Kids to a Park
Taking kids to a park will allow everyone in the house to get away from the screens for a while and breathe some fresh air. If you don’t have kids, you can take your pet or just yourself to the park too. Think of it as an end-of-the-day break. Before the covid-19 pandemic, everyone would stay out most days and feel relieved to come home in the evening. Similarly, after working and studying all day inside the home, you can breathe some fresh outside air by going out. Ask a friend or neighbor to join you to fulfill your social needs too.
There are many ways to get some movement once you’re outside. You can choose to walk to the park if it’s not too far. You can also ask a friend or a neighbor to tag along and catch up on life with them while strolling or walking. Doing some yoga and light stretching in the park will also help you freshen up.
Go Out for Groceries
Going out for groceries is the easiest way to fit some movement into your weekly routine. If you live in a suburban or partially sub-urban area, you can take a walk to and from the nearest grocery store every week. If you like walking through the neighborhood, you can also divide your grocery trip into two or three grocery trips. Your body will be getting some much-needed movement, and your kitchen will always be stocked with fresh produce.
Take Active Breaks
Sitting in one place and working in front of a screen all day can get exhausting. You can break away from the screen and take an active break every hour. You can do some light stretching or indoor walking for a few minutes before getting back to the desk and continuing work.
Taking an active break every hour for a few minutes can do wonders for your physical and mental health. It will keep your mind fresh, and your body won’t develop issues like back pain or numbness of limbs.
Complete Chores Once a Day
Doing chores around the house is the most productive way of staying healthy during the pandemic. You will not only be moving around the house and adding to your daily footsteps, but you will be getting things done around the house too.
Set a fixed time for yourself to complete all chores around the house once every day. This fixed time can be early morning before you begin your professional work or studies, in the evening, or at night after completing it. Just ensure that you can focus fully on the tasks at hand while doing them.
You can get various chores around the house done at this time, such as washing dishes, folding laundry, putting a new load in laundry, picking up dirty dishes from around the house, sorting clothes placed outside, organizing your desk, organizing the home, watering plants, emptying grocery bags and stocking pantry, cutting up vegetables to be used the next or same day, vacuuming or dusting up your place, and cleaning all the surfaces. You won’t have all the chores every day, so you can make a list of three to five things that need to be done according to your home’s needs and then do one extra task each day.
You can put up your favorite playlist, a podcast, or an audiobook while you complete these tasks to help your mind wind down from the day. Once you’re done with all the chores, your home will look perfect, and you wouldn’t mind spending time in there.
Dance for Fun
Dancing is a great activity that can help you unwind, move your body, and be happy. After getting done with your daily work, you can play your favorite music and dance to its tune. If you are shy, you can dance alone in your room. Otherwise, you can include kids and elders in the house in this activity. You can dance however you please. If you don’t know any moves, you can check out choreography videos on YouTube on several songs.
Tips for Staying Motivated During the Pandemic
The uncertainties during the pandemic have led to many people developing fear and anxiety about the future. People forget that the future has always been and will always be unknown and uncertain. Our plans during the pre-covid-19 pandemic were halted by things other than a global lockdown and didn’t always work out either.
Life, everywhere, will always be imperfect. Humanity has lived through several pandemics and worldwide wars, yet it continues to survive and thrive. Let’s look at the three tips that will let you survive and thrive the current pandemic:
Build a routine
The global lockdown to contain the pandemic disturbed people’s routines and their lives greatly. The majority of the world’s population, including people of all ages, had a defined routine before the covid-19 pandemic. Most woke up in the early hours of the morning, got dressed, got breakfast, and stepped out of the house to go to their schools or jobs. After school and job, they had various activities that they kept themselves occupied with at home or outside. A lot of people traveled long distances throughout the day too.
However, when coronavirus spread worldwide and people had to stay home to keep themselves safe, almost all of their routines got greatly disturbed. People didn’t only have to stay home; they had to find ways of getting things done while staying home. Much everyday life became too dangerous or inaccessible in the lockdown, and people began overworking in hopes of making up for the affected economy. But as things calmed down, everyone realized that things would either go back to normal sooner or later or that humanity would find a new normal together. Either way, things will work out.
You can also make things work out for yourself by building a routine as you had one in the pre-covid-19 days. While it can be difficult to stick to a routine when you can do anything anytime you want in your home, building a routine is the best way to bring discipline and calmness into your life
Self-care has become more important than ever. People are finding unique ways to relax and take care of themselves. From ten-step Korean beauty routines to formulating personal products using essential oils, everything is trending these days. Creating some me-time every night and practicing some self-care will help you positively unwind the day. It will also let you practice much-needed self-love.
Feel and Communicate
Snubbing your feelings will only accumulate them under pressure until you cannot snub them anymore. Emotional bursts outs can be ugly and unhealthy. They can damage one’s mental health and also their relationships. Fear and anxiety of the future are completely valid, and so are feelings of loneliness. You can find various ways to manage your emotions. If you find it difficult to manage them yourself, please don’t hesitate to reach out for some professional help.
Feeling and processing your feelings can greatly help you manage them. You will also be able to communicate them to your loved ones, who can help strengthen your relationships.
Finally, remember not to be tough on yourself. The times are already tough. You’re only a human, and you’re not alone in your struggles through this global pandemic. Reach out to people with kindness, and you’ll be amazed to see how bravely everyone is struggling, just as they’ll be amazed by your strength. Together, it can be a little easier.
The increased popularity of essential oils in the past few years can be credited to those who take self-care seriously. The popularity of essential oils as essential ingredients in self-care products has led to several natural skincare brands. Moreover, it has also led to established self-care brands launching new product lines named after certain essential oils.
However, the use of essential oils in beauty and self-care products isn’t new. Essential oils have been used in various skincare and haircare products before it was a trend to read product labels and be informed about what one is putting on themselves. If you have begun doing the same and are looking to be informed about essential oils and their uses in self-care products, you are at the right place.
So without further ado, let’s find out what essential oils are commonly used in self-care products and what benefits do they provide:
Argan oil is one of the most popular essential oil as it can be used on both skin and hair. Supermarket aisles are full of argan oil self-care products. From hair masks to shampoos to face masks to particular treatments, it can be found in everything. Argan oil is packed with essential fatty acids and linoleic acid. Linoleic acid is another form of fatty acid which is beneficial for health in multiple ways.
The benefits of argan oil for skin include moisturizing, protecting from sun damage, reversing sun damage, repairing skin, and healing irritated skin and skin infections. It also contains vitamin E, which helps with changing ageing signs and reducing acne marks and dark spots.
For hair, argan oil works as a natural leave-in conditioner. It contains essential antioxidants that help detangle hair ends, promote hair growth, and boost hair volume by strengthening hair follicles and reducing breakage. The fatty acids in argan oil bind to hair and provide shine and silkiness to them.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is top-rated in people with oily skin, and for all the right reasons! The essential oil contains a high percentage of antioxidants along with anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial properties. These beneficial properties of tea tree oil have made skincare brands dedicate entire product lines to it.
It is a popular choice for alternative acne treatment. Even 100% pure tea tree oil is safe to use on the skin. However, it can be mixed in with other essential oils or carrier oils for added benefits. The anti-bacterial actions by tea tree oil significantly reduce the existing acne and prevent acne in users. It also helps reduce the appearance of acne scars and leaves the skin smooth, clear, and soft after use.
Besides treating acne, tea tree oil also helps moisturize oily skin. The misconception that people with oily skin don’t need to moisturize their skin is pretty common. More often than not, people with oily skin worsen their skin texture by constantly stripping their skin of oils and moisture. Tea trees can greatly help such people restore their skin’s natural texture by moisturizing it without creating a heavy oil film on the skin.
The above-mentioned moisturizing properties of tea tree essential oil also make it useful to treat eczema and skin rashes. However, itchy, irritated, and extremely dry skin should not be exposed to 100% tea tree oil. Since tea tree oil works better on the skin’s surface, mixing it with a carrier oil or moisturizer can help increase its reception and absorption by the skin.
The benefits of tea tree oil on the scalp are the same as skin. The moisturizing properties of the oil can help reduce dandruff and make hair more substantial from the roots. The anti-bacterial properties of the tea tree essential oil also make it worthwhile to treat minor cuts and wounds.
Clary Sage Oil
A lesser-known ingredient among people, clary sage, is a common essential oil in several beauty products. Its soothing and balancing properties have made it a widespread use for products for all types of skin. It is an excellent moisture neutralizer and can control oil and sebum production on the skin. Clary sage essential oils contain many natural compounds that contribute to their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and stimulant properties.
At times, people with dry skin can have difficulty finding a suitable product for their acne. Clary sage’s balancing and anti-inflammatory properties together can help people with dry skin get rid of acne without drying out their skin. As most dry skin is also sensitive, since there is no natural oil film to protect it, the anti-inflammatory properties of clary sage essential oil benefits double-time to calm the skin.
The antioxidant and stimulant properties of clary sage oil prove helpful when it is applied to the scalp. It can tighten the scalp skin and muscles and maintain and stimulate collagen production and hair growth. In cosmetics, it adds a natural, harmless fragrance along with all the other benefits.
While lavender is the most popular essential oil in self-care products that fall into the category of aromatherapy, it can also prove to be a beneficial ingredient in skincare and haircare products. Lavender’s inclusion in self-care products isn’t uncommon either. Its main properties and benefits are similar to other popular essential oils. However, it is of more significant benefit to people with dry skin or when mixed in with other essential oils. On its own, the lavender essential oil can cause stinging or skin irritation.
Mixing lavender oil with jojoba oil or aloe vera can turn it into a natural skin disinfectant and suitable for minor wounds or cuts. The disinfectant properties of lavender oil combined with the soothing properties of the carrier can help reduce inflammation and promote healing of the skin. It can also help with smoothing out the appearance of the wound once it’s healed.
When mixed with tea tree oil, lavender essential oil benefits can extend to soothing dry skin, eczema, and psoriasis. It can significantly reduce red and scaly skin’s appearance and make it soft and healthy with regular use. It can also help treat acne for those with dry skin. However, it shouldn’t be mixed with tea tree oil when applied to the skin for acne treatment. Instead, combining it with a moisturizing carrier oil, such as coconut oil, works better for this purpose.
However, the tea tree and lavender mixture can help get rid of head lice or scalp fungus. It can also get rid of dandruff and promote hair growth.
Rosehip essential oil contains a high percentage of fatty acids, vitamin A, and vitamin C. While vitamin C is a necessary part of the diet, it is also a vital ingredient for most modern cleansers, serums, toners, and moisturizers. Many synthetic and natural beauty brands have dedicated entire product lines to vitamin A and vitamin C, and rosehip essential oil can be found in most of them.
When applied to the skin, vitamin C can reduce wrinkles and sun damage. It can also treat sunburns and help in the generation of new skin. With regular use, it can also help reduce skin pigmentation and the appearance of dark spots.
Vitamin A also helps in reducing hyperpigmentation. It also makes for an excellent natural moisturizer, especially for dry and sensitive skin and repairs the top skin layers by reconstructing skin barrier damaged by sun, harsh chemicals, or other external factors.
The combination of vitamin A and vitamin C also enhances benefits of both the essential vitamins. However, vitamin A and vitamin C can irritate those with sensitive or damaged skin. Therefore, rosehip oil shouldn’t be used directly on broken or irritated skin. If found in skincare products, make sure the product contains other neutralizers.
Neroli essential oil is a common ingredient in soothing products such as creams, lotions, and toners. Besides its mild fragrance, the antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties of the oil also make it a beneficial oil.
The oil contains a high percentage of vitamin C which also increases benefits when added to any self-care products. Unlike rosehip oil, neroli oil can be used on irritated skin due to its calming effects. If you have sore or sensitive skin, you should look for neroli essential oil instead of rosehip essential oil.
The essential oil benefits also a common component in haircare products that promise dandruff relief. Neroli oil plays a vital part in delivering the promises. Its clean fragrance also makes it a top choice to be used in perfumes and aromatherapy products.
Marula essential oil is another common essential oil in all types of self-care products, especially skincare products. Its rich in antioxidants and amino acids make it an easy choice for hydrating, moisturizing, and antiaging products. From hand creams to moisturizing soaps to nail strengthening oils and body creams, it can be found in most products in any supermarket skincare aisle.
Its gentle hydrating properties make it ideal for lip products such as lip balms, hydrating lip glosses, and lip repair treatments. Since it’s gentle on the skin, it can also be used to treat sensitive skin around the nails. The gentle hydration it provides makes it ideal for all skin types. Most moisturizers for oily skin contain marula essential oil.
Besides skincare, marula oil is an essential hydrating agent in hair care products too. It calms down frizzy and rough hair without adding too much grease.
Another common essential oil found in most hair care products is frankincense essential oil. Like marula oil, this oil also adds moisture to hair without making them greasy. It is also a vital ingredient in anti-dandruff hair products. Its calming and antiseptic properties also help reduce the itchiness of the scalp due to prolonged or chronic dandruff.
Despite its anti-inflammatory and soothing properties, the oil can cause skin irritation if applied directly. However, mixed in with a moisturizing carrier, it can be used to treat acne among those with dry skin. It can also help skin recover from sun damage and can promote new skin cells generation.
Peppermint essential oil is widely used in all forms of cleansers, from scalp cleansers to face and body cleansers. Due to its easy absorption by the skin and its anti-microbial and anti-fungal properties, the oil helps clean the buildup of germs, oil, and other chemicals from the skin surface wherever it’s applied.
However, the oil shouldn’t be used on its own. Although it’s common for many self-care products manufacturers to mix the oil with a moisturizing carrier, the oil’s benefits can be mellowed down. For getting the most benefits from the moisturizer, it should be mixed in with a neutralizing or dry oil such as rosehip or argan.
Besides the above-mentioned uses, peppermint oil is also used in many refreshing body mists, deodorants, and deo-sticks.
Rose extracts have been used for self-care for at least a few thousand years now. In modern-day beauty products, rose essential oil adds gentle moisturizing and calming properties. Since the oil is packed with vitamin A, it is a crucial ingredient in anti-ageing products.
Rose essential oil doesn’t bring glow and balancing moisturizing qualities to skin alone but also provides hair with shine while removing frizz and brittleness from them. It effortlessly combines with other essential oils and can act as a carrier oil for more potent essential oils such as lavender or peppermint oils.
It is also a common and prominent ingredient in several perfumes.
Finally, if you’re looking to level up your skincare game, looking for essential oils that fit your requirements and your skin’s need can prove to be helpful. If you are interested in formulating cosmetic or beauty products and are looking for a reliable dealer to get them from, you can look into our catalogue for essential oils.
Essential oils can bring a lot of benefits to one’s health and wellbeing. However, picking the right essential oil can feel as overwhelming as it feels calming and soothing.
Just as not all regular medicines and therapies work for everyone, not all essential oils work for everyone either. Multiple factors need to be considered to determine what essential oils would work best for an individual’s needs. If you want to step into the world of essential oils but find it confusing, start with finding out the following nine things to find the right essential oil for you:
Have You Done Enough Research?
Essential oils get a bad rep, which is mostly due to some of the users’ enthusiasm. Several people claim essential oils to be magic potions, but it’s important to mention that reality is a little different. Scientifically, essential oils don’t contain magic ingredients. They will not cure serious ailments or diseases either.
In the self-care industry, ‘chemicals’ also get a bad rep. It is why before you incorporate essential oils in your routine, you should understand that though essential oils are completely organic, they’re still made up of chemicals. Many people confuse ‘organic’ as a synonym of ‘non-synthetic.’ Non-synthetic is anything that isn’t made in a lab or through mixing raw chemical compounds. At the same time, organic is anything derived naturally from plants or animals and hasn’t been mixed with raw chemicals. However, organic compounds are also made up of chemical compounds.
Everything in the universe is made up of chemicals, including humans and other animals as well as plants. Not all chemicals are harmful, and not everything that is made in a lab is harmful either. Chemicals are what make up the biological cells in all organisms. Organic health and wellbeing products can be safer than synthetic health and wellbeing products because they’re natural. However, they may contain certain chemical compounds that you believed only existed in synthetic products.
Before you begin using essential oils, you should research exactly how essential oils benefit people. You don’t want to have high hopes only to be let down.
What Are You Using Them For?
Picking out the right essential oil becomes easy when you know the purpose you want to use it for. Most people who benefit from essential oils use them for aromatherapy. Essential oils extracted from Lavender, Eucalyptus, Ginger, Jasmine, and Chamomile have been used in aromatherapy practices for thousands of years.
Another good reason to incorporate essential oils into one’s home is their insect repellent properties.Some manufacturers use essential oils such as thyme, citronella, sage, rosemary, peppermint, and lemon in organic insect repellants. Some people may also see benefits like improved quality of sleep and suppressed hunger by continued use of essential oils. Some essential oils can also relieve nausea, congestion, or cramps in some people.
There are up to 90 different types of essential oils available in the market these days. The essential oil that would fit your needs can depend on the specific aromatherapy practice you want to incorporate in your routine or the specific insects you wish to repel from your home.
What Does Your Doctor Say?
Different people tend to benefit from different things. It’s completely okay to incorporate alternative medicines into your routine if your doctor knows and approves. Don’t go against your doctor’s advice and use essential oils or anything else, which may obstruct your ongoing treatment.
You should take your doctor on board if you suffer from a serious medical ailment and want to use essential oils to relieve yourself of some of its symptoms. Don’t assume your doctor will discourage their use because essential oils are sometimes used in alternative medicine. Your doctor is most likely to approve your use of essential oils for aromatherapy.
On the other hand, if you don’t suffer from any serious health complications, you don’t need any doctor’s permission to use essential oils. However, if you develop some health concerns by using essential oils, please consult a doctor as soon as you can.
Have You Accounted for Allergies?
It is important to read up on the ingredients in essential oil blends before using them. Some essential oils, especially if applied to the skin, can trigger allergies in some people. These allergies can continue to worsen when not detected or taken care of immediately. In severe cases, people can develop rashes, blisters, or scaling of skin too.
Inhaling essential oils through diffusers or homemade candles can also result in itchiness of skin, eyes, or nose or other allergies affecting the respiratory system. People can experience stuffy or runny noses, watery eyes, or sneezing. In extreme cases, the use of essential oils can cause shortness of breath, dizziness, hives, vomiting, or diarrhea. Some people may also experience symptoms similar to those of an anxiety attack.
To avoid allergic reactions from essential oils, research well on the ingredients of the essential oil you want to use and make sure it’s free of any allergens. If you’re confused, consult with your doctor. They will guide you on if you should use the essential oil and in what quantity.
How Will You Apply Essential Oils?
There are two safe ways to use essential oils: through inhalation and topical application.
Essential oils can be inhaled through their use in diffusers, candles, burners, and sprays. Essential oils can be mixed with pre-made candles by melting the wax in a double-boiler or making homemade candles. You can also mix it with water and spray it in any room to deodorize it. Essential oils are mixed in with water when using in diffusers and burners too.
Most essential oils used as mood boosters are used in diffusers, candles, and burners. Common mood booster essential oils include lavender, chamomile, sage, and ylang-ylang. In the form of sprays, essential oils are commonly used as disinfectants and insect repellants. Many people also use lavender essential oil mixed in with water as a spray in their bedrooms, specifically on their sheets and pillows to improve their sleep.
Topical application refers to diluting the essential oil with a carrier and applying it directly to the skin. Using a carrier is necessary as essential oils can harm the skin when applied directly. Usually, the carrier is another oil that is safe for direct application on the skin. The dilution should only leave 3% of essential oil concentration in the mixture. A concentration greater than 3% can harm the skin.
The method of topical application is mostly used in aromatherapy massages or baths. However, before practicing this method, people with sensitive skin should consult a dermatologist. Essential oils with disinfecting properties such as peppermint, lemon, and citronella should not be used on the skin with or without the carrier oil. Topical use of any essential oil should also be avoided on damaged skin.
What Carrier Oil Will You Use?
In the US, FDA has approved all edible plant-based oils as carrier oils. Rarely anyone happens to be allergic to these common carrier oils. The most popular and cheapest carrier oils include coconut, olive, almond, and apricot oil.
You can safely pick any of these or other carrier oils available in the stores. However, there are a few points that you should keep in mind while picking a career oil:
- The Odor of Carrier Oil – Pick a carrier oil that you like how it smells, but remember that it will change when mixed in with the essential oil.
- Your Skin Type – While you may not be allergic to a carrier oil, your skin may not be its fan either based on how moisturizing or dry it is. For example, rosehip seed oil makes for a suitable carrier oil for those with dry skin, while olive oil can further dry out their skin. If applied to hair, the skin of the scalp and hair quality should be kept in mind. Argan oil is a common carrier oil to incorporate essential oils in hair care.
- Shelf Life of Carrier Oil – This may not influence which carrier oil you’re picking, but it may impact its quantity. Some oils last for a longer time than others. Your use and their shelf life may affect buying the carrier oil in bulk or in little quantity.
How Will You Include Them in Your Routine?
It is one thing to plan for regular use of essential oils in your daily self-care routine, and it’s another thing to let them spoil on your shelves while you forget about them. Your plans to incorporate essential oils in your routine should be practical, easy, and enjoyable.
There’s no point in buying things that will feel like a burden to use. Instead of improving your life’s quality, essential oils sitting in your cabinet will be a waste of your money.
The effects of some essential oils also take time to be strong enough to be noticed. You will have to stay consistent in the use of essential oils to get any benefits from them. If you cannot use the oild regularly, it would be better to look at other organic self-care forms.
Are You Aware of the Dos and Don’ts of the Essential Oil?
The practices of using essential oils have been developed over millennia. They are not just about the beneficial chemical compounds and the sweet aroma they emit. Essential oil practices are about the traditions and rituals associated with their usage. They are about the whole experience their usage brings.
Before using essential oils, ask yourself if you want to commit to the whole experience. You should also ask yourself if you can realistically commit to using essential oils for a long time.
Here are also a few don’ts you should be aware of when using essential oils:
- Don’t use essential oils on pets or children for any purposes, not even for the same purposes as yourself.
- Don’t think of them as a replacement for traditional medicine.
- Don’t leave them unattended in the presence of children and pets. Children and pets tend to ingest whatever they can get their hands on, and essential oils can prove fatal if ingested.
Do You Know Where to Get Essential Oils?
Since the FDA doesn’t regulate the quality of essential oils available in the market, it can be difficult to determine just by reading the labels. However, here are a few guidelines that will help you identify good quality essential oils:
- The bottle will be airtight – high-quality essential oils will never come in a cheap bottle. The quality of the bottle and the seal on it should give you a good idea about the quality of the essential oil it contains. Any good-quality essential oil will always be packed in a dark-colored glass bottle to keep it safe from direct sunlight and warmth, as these can affect the quality of some essential oils.
- The label will say it all – there should be four important things written on the label. First, the country of origin; second, the plant’s name; third, how that plant was grown; and fourth, the extraction method. If any of these are missing on the label or not written clearly, don’t buy that essential oil.
- It should read “100% Pure Essential Oil,” and there should be no mention of the word “fragrance.”
- The source will be mentioned – the country of the origin of the essential oil should be mentioned on either the label or the packaging. If you want to be responsible, look for ethically and responsibly sourced essential oils, such as Maverick Oils. Maverick Oils is a family-owned business where all the products come from legitimate sources to ensure quality and benefits.
Everything aside, make sure not to overthink or overdo them. Essential oils are used to enhance self-care. If at any point you believe you’re not achieving this purpose, you should pause or stop the use of essential oils. However, if and when incorporated responsibly into one’s routine, essential oils can prove to be greatly helpful.