8 min read.
If you’ve spent any time researching essential oils and their uses, you’ve probably come across many different brands and blends. In addition to the therapeutic benefits of essential oils and the plant-based ingredients from which they are derived, many of these oils come from different sources and have been processed in different ways. Does that mean one essential oil is safer than another? What are the safest essential oils? What about the ones that aren’t so safe?
Essential oils are liquid plant extracts that have been concentrated over many years and from many plant sources. They are extracted from the leaves, stems, roots, flowers, and other parts of plants. Essential oils are used in natural remedies because they have powerful medicinal properties.
That being said, many essential oils are not necessarily safe for everyone. They can have strong chemical properties, and just like any other substance, they can be toxic if they are used in too high a concentration or if they are mixed with other chemicals that may react with the essential oil.
What are the safest essential oils to use?
Safety can be a major concern when it comes to essential oils. Many people new to aromatherapy and the use of essential oils may not know how they work or what they're capable of, so it's important to understand the risks involved in order to make informed decisions about which oils you choose to use.
There are many safe essential oils that have a therapeutic effect for most people, but there are some that should be used with caution. The following in no particular order are considered to be among the safest oils for most people.
Just remember each person is unique and may have a different experience. If you plan to use in a shared space it is wise to check no one has any allergies. This is not an extensive list but serves as a starting point among these commonly used essential oils.
Why are some essential oils dangerous?
Essential oils can be dangerous for a number of reasons. The first reason is because some essential oils are made from different types of plants than others. For example, citrus essential oil is typically processed from the rinds of citrus fruits, but some brands have been found to be made from lemons that have been chemically treated with pesticides. Additionally, many essential oils are adulterated with cheaper oils in order to make them more affordable and less pure.
In addition to the potential dangers of individual plant ingredients, there are other factors that can make an essential oil unsafe. One common issue is using old or improperly stored oils that may have broken down chemically or come into contact with bacteria. A issue may occur by mixing two different types of essential oils together when they should not be mixed together.
Another problem you could experience with essential oils is that you or someone in your household could be allergic. These are plant extracts after all and share the properties of that plant, if you are allergic to Lavender then you should expect to be allergic to the use of the oil. This type of allergic reaction may vary on usage, some users will use an essential oil in a Diffuser and be fine, but please take caution.
If you plan to apply essential oils to your skin, make sure you always dilute with a base oil as mentioned earlier, essential oils are highly concentrated making them stronger than their plant forms. It would be wise to perform a patch test as well, the last thing you want to do is apply an oil to your skin or hair and have a reaction to it.
Signs you should keep an eye out for and stop using an oil include the following:
Dizziness or Feeling Faint
Most common issues arrive from people being unaware of how to use essential oils. Each oil is unique and has its own properties and strength, such as Ylang Ylang. This oil is well known for its sweet smelling properties and is widely used in perfumes, however, it has a naturally strong aroma which can often give headaches if the dosage is high enough. We all know someone who wears too much perfume or aftershave to the point where it gives us a headache. It is the same with essential oils, the difference being if you know the oil has a powerful aroma you can use a drop or two less to make it more weaker in its dilution.
An example of this, Lavender and Ylang Ylang are both sweet floral oils, Lavender being more mild can be used in higher doses without triggering a headache. It really makes a difference having a basic understanding of oils to maximise the benefits. So many people would begin to look into aromatherapy and use such a high dose in an oil burner then get one of the signs mentioned above. This would obviously put anyone off which is completely understandable. If this has happened to you, it may not be that particular oil you tried it may just have been the dosage used was too high.
Essential oils usage should definitely be consulted with a doctor if you are considering to use while pregnant. A general rule of thumb would be to avoid them to be on the safer side as it is not worth the risk.
What about base oils?
Base oils other known as carrier oils as they are commonly used to dilute essential oils are a lot better for the application on your skin and hair. These oils are not as potent as their essential oils counterparts and also tend to have a weaker scent. They are used for a wide variety of things from Beard Oils to Massage Oils.
They are thicker than essential oils and are not used in oil diffusers. You will commonly find them in the ingredients of most moisturisers and skin care products. That being said like essential oils you can still be allergic or have a reaction to them, so please try to perform a patch test before use.
Most well known base oils are as follows:
Base oils can be mixed with essential oils, but they should have a specific dilution. Too much of the essential oil without being diluted enough is a common problem that can give people skin irritation. You can always consult a aromatherapist or find a dilution blend online if you are unsure.
Does the brand really matter?
While some essential oils are more expensive and come from higher-quality plants, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re safer. Some cheaper brands are made with chemicals which can be harmful. There are many good brands out there, but also many bad brands, some will overcharge while others don't take into consideration that people may not have an understanding of oils and just push for the sale. Everything you read and hear should be taken with a pinch of salt.
The best way to ensure the safety of any essential oil you buy is to research the company that produces it and make sure they have completed third-party testing on the product before it reaches your home. If you don’t know any specifics about the company, then it may be best to avoid purchasing their oils until you do some more research.
You could also contact a local aromatherapist and see what oil they prefer, just be aware they might be selling their own oils for a commission.
There are essential oils that are deemed to be more safe than others. This can also be on a individual basis due to allergies. before applying any oil to your skin ensure you perform a patch test. Also check your household to see if anyone else may have a known allergy.
There are many different brands of essential oils out there, and it can be difficult to figure out which ones are safe to use, especially when starting out in aromatherapy. This means you should check independent reviews when possible.
All essential oils can be safe in the right hands as long as no one is allergic or pregnant. It is worth doing your research if you want to truly maximise the benefits of aromatherapy.
Simply Aroma has a mission to help you relieve stress and pain with the power of aromatherapy. We believe that aromatherapy is more than just a pleasant way to relax, it's an effective way to improve your mood and relieve pain. We are committed to providing you with the highest quality plant-based essential oils at affordable prices. Our oils are 100% pure unless stated otherwise and are sourced from all over the world. Simply Aroma is a company that cares about your well-being, so we make sure that you have access to high quality essential oils without breaking the bank!