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Sep 9, 2012

Aromatherapy Mini Course-Carrier Oils



What are Carrier Oils?
Carrier oils are another part of aromatherapy treatment. While they are generally considered as base oils or vegetable oils, they have a more generalized purpose. Carrier oils are used to dilute essential oils, CO2’s, and absolutes before you apply them onto your skin. This allows you to take a diluted essential oil, combine it with a base oil or carrier oil,
and it will then be considered as diluted. This will make it safe for you to put it on your skin.
Different carrier oils offer different types of properties and can have therapeutic benefits of their own or increase the therapeutic benefit of the essential oil you are using. They are usually made from cold pressed vegetable oils that are made from the fatty portions of certain plants. They do not evaporate or add their own aroma to the essential oils.
Interestingly, carrier oils can go bad. While essential oils can last almost indefinitely common carrier oils will expire.
You want your carrier oils to be natural or to have natural vitamin E. added as a preservative.
Examples of carrier oils and their uses?
There are many different types of carrier oils. Her are some of the more commonly used to carrier oils.
Olive oil
Olive oil is often used in cooking. Its natural aroma is very to the close to that of the oil used in cooking; by which I mean that it smells like olives. Its texture is heavy and rather oily and it has a light to medium green color. It is very important to use a minimal amount or an appropriate amount in dilution as it may overpower the blend.
Peanut oil
Peanut oil has an extremely light aroma with a faintly nutty quality. Its texture is thick and leaves a very oily film on the skin and its color is almost clear. Use caution with peanut oil as it should not be used on anyone who has an allergy to peanuts. It is often a very good choice to use with massage oils or in a massage blend because of its oily texture and can help with arthritis.
Sweet Almond oil
Sweet almond oil has a light and slightly sweet and nutty aroma. It is slightly oily and will leave an oily feeling on the skin, but it absorbs quickly. It is virtually clear but with a tinge of yellow. Sweet almond oil is an all-purpose carrier oil which can be used with almost anyessential oil and is moderately priced, making it an excellent choice for most essential oils.
Cocoa Butter Oil
Cocoa butter oil has a rich and sweet aroma that definitely smells like chocolate. This type of butter remains solid and hard at room temperature and breaks into pieces. However, it is a good oil for heating and easing at a lukewarm or warm temperature. It's coloring is faintly tan. Cocoa butter oil should be blended with other materials or oils in order to be usable. It is an excellent oil to mix in for lotions and creams.
Hazelnut Oil
Hazelnut oil has a light, nutty, and somewhat sweet aroma. It is thin and leaves a very slightly oily feel. It is particularly good to use for people who have oily skin as it does not leave nearly as oily a residue as other carrier oils can. Not leaving an oily residue means the people using it will not have to suffer from breakouts of acne quite as often, which affects a large amount of the population in the United States and worldwide due to oil make-up’s and oil residue leaving products.
Pecan Oil
Pecan oil has a faintly fatty and nutty aroma and has a medium thickness, leaving only a slight oily film on the skin. Its coloring is nearly clear but it is said to go bad fairly quickly. It needs to be stored in a dark colored bottle in a dark area in order to protect it from exposure to sunlight, which will cause it to go bad.
There is a wide variety of other carrier oils that you can use and each one has its particular purpose, aroma, texture,and color. This list is not exhaustive, but does give you a good understanding of potential oils that you can use to dilute your essential oils.
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