What's so essential about essential oils??
In all of our products we have been using essential oils for fragrance and their therapeutic properties, but have you ever wondered what exactly is an essential oil? Read on to learn more!
In a nutshell, essential oils are the natural oils of plants in a very highly concentrated format. To extract an oil from a plant, the entire plant (including roots, leaves, bark, stems, etc.), is subjected to a process called distillation with either steam or water. Interestingly enough ‘even with pure essential oils the composition of the oil can vary depending on the time of day, season, geographic location, method and duration of distillation, year grown, and the weather, making every step of the production process a critical determinant of the overall quality of the essential oil product’ (doTerra 2018). Extracting essential oils can be a labour intensive process and hence depending on the plant, more work results in a higher cost and that's why some oils are quite expensive when compared to others.
According to Wikipedia, distillation is defined as 'the process of separating the components or substances from a liquid mixture by selective boiling and condensation'. You can better understand the complexity of distillation by looking at the schematic below that we found on this website.
(Distillation Process, Keyaseth 2018)
Once distillation is complete, the result is this highly concentrated format in which the essence of the plant is preserved along with its therapeutic properties. When in their original form in the plant, these oils provide protection to the plant against diseases and predators and also aid in pollination. As a result, when essential oils are applied to our skin, many offer an antiseptic benefit, thereby minimizing the possibility of an infection.
Essential oils are also believed to offer mental reprieve from anxiety, panic attacks, and stress. Aromatherapy is a huge therapeutic quality of essential oils where there is believed to be a therapeutic benefit to a diffused oil in the air. Oils can be applied topically and internally too, depending on which oil you are using and for what benefit, but it is important that you handle all oils safely to avoid toxicity and any kind of damage. Yes, they are natural compounds and chemicals, but our bodies are only designed to handle and tolerate specific limits of any exposure to any kind of substances. Feel free to get in touch if you have any questions about specific essential oils if there is a certain health benefit you are seeking to obtain.
That's essential oils in a nutshell, and given our belief in aligning ourselves with natural products, you can now understand why we use them so much.
Yours in Passion, Vision, Creation.
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