The Secret of Best Aromatherapy Carrier Oils
Aromatherapy is all about diluting essential oils with a carrier. What is a carrier? And which one should you choose to use? We'll be covering the organic carrier oil most commonly used in topical and massage applications.
What is a Carrier Oil and How Does it Work?
Carrier oils are common oils extracted from the nuts, seeds, kernels, and fruits of a plant. The plant used to make them and the refinement they were made from can affect their color and smell. Liquidy oils, such as olive and almond, contain more unsaturated fats. Oils higher in saturated fats like coconut oil will remain solid at room temperatures.
Know your oils
There are some things you should know before making a purchase decision about carrier oils. Here's a quick guide to what you should look for:
- Common Name: What oil do you need?
- Latin Name: Is the oil being pressed from the specific botanical that you are interested in? Oils sold under the same common names can come from different species, or even different plants.
- Part of the plant: From which part of the tree is the oil?
- Method of extraction: Oils are made using cold-pressing (no heat), exeller-pressing with minimal heat, or solvent extraction.
- Refinement methods: Is it unrefined or physically refined (no use of solvents)? Is the oil winterized to remove any waxes that may separate at low temperatures?
Look for an organic carrier oil that is cold-pressed or expeller pressed when buying carrier oils. It is best to avoid solvents or chemical refinement. However, some oils can be physically refined to remove color, strong smells, or fats so that the oil does not separate in cold temperatures.
Best Aromatherapy Carrier Oils for Essential Oils
Jojoba oil actually contains a liquid wax which gives it a long shelf life. It is structurally similar to sebum, the natural oil our skin produces. It is great for body and massage oils, as well as moisturizing. It also doesn't clog your pores which is great for acne prone skin. You can use it as a base oil and not mix with any other oils. The scent of finished blends will not be affected by Jojoba.
Sweet almond or almond oil is a great base for body oils, lotions, creams, and soap. It is moisturizing and emollient, which we love. It can be used alone or in combination with a blend. You may still be able to detect its nutty scent.
Sunflower oil is light in scent and easily absorbed into the skin. This oil is a great base for massage oils and body oils. The blend's scent will not be overpowered by this high-oleic oil.
This oil is used most commonly in massage oils and in herbal oil infusions. Although it can feel a little greasy, this oil provides long-lasting glide and emollient properties for blends. Although olive oil can have a strong smell and may affect the final product, don't let this stop you from using it as a carrier. It is also a coomon oil in most households so great to use when you have no other carrier oils on hand.
Rosehip seed oil is a favorite for dry and mature skin. It can also be used as a moisturizing agent in facial serums and lotions. This oil can be mixed with another carrier. To preserve its shelf life, we recommend that you refrigerate this oil immediately after it is opened.
Other Popular Aromatherapy Carrier Oils
- Fractionated Coconut Oil
- Grapeseed Oil
- Argan Oil
Find out the Best Carrier Oils for Essential Oil Rollerball Recipes.