Essential oils are extracted through different methods from the leaves, barks, and rinds of certain plants. You can find them in many beauty products or use them in their pure form in creating your own creams or scrubs. Pure essential oils can also be rubbed into the skin or used for an at home aromatherapy bath.

Although essential oils can be used in a multitude of ways and provide a number of benefits, they have to be handled and used correctly for the health and safety of the user. Here are 10 tips to make sure you use essential oils wisely and to your continued health and benefit.

Tips When Using Essential Oils

  1. Always check the label and consult your doctor if you are unsure if the essential oil is safe to use.
  2. Double check whether or not the essential oil is safe for consumption or internal use if you wish to place it in or on your mouth, nose, eyes, or private parts.
  3. Exposure to oxygen can spoil an essential oil and cause the oil to not work as it should. To be on the safe side, do not keep an open essential oil for more than 3 years.
  4. Never apply an essential oil straight to the skin as it is too concentrated. Always dilute the oil with a cream, gel or carrier oil.
  5. Your skin may have a bad reaction to essential oils if it is already in some way damaged by injury or inflammation. It is always best to place essential oil products on healthy skin.
  6. Depending on a user’s age, they may be more sensitive to essential oils and be at greater risk of having a skin reaction. Therefore, young children and the elderly should be careful when using essential oil products. Do not use essential oils on a baby unless given the ‘go ahead’ by your pediatrician.
  7. Essential oils need to be stored correctly and out of reach of children, as the wrong dose or incorrect use can cause serious health problems.
  8. Stop using the product or essential oil if you begin to have a negative reaction, such as the formation of a rash, little bumps, boils, or itchy skin. If you feel any adverse side effects, gently wash off the product with water.
  9. Essentials oils can still cause skin irritations if used too much or too often, so just remember to use these products in moderation.
  10. Always consult a doctor if you wish to use essential oil products while pregnant. Some essential oils can make their way to the baby via the placenta. Although essential oils may have no effect on the growing fetus, unless you consume or apply toxic amounts, it is better to be on the safe side. Essential oils to avoid while pregnant include wormwood, rue, oak moss, Lavandula stoechas, camphor, parsley seed, sage, and hyssop.