Carrier Oils: The Secret Sauce!
We love the benefits of essential oils. Everyone knows essential oils are too powerful to apply directly to the skin. And everyone knows what you do is dilute your essential oils in a carrier oil that “carries” the essential oil through the skin. The conventional wisdom is that any carrier oil will do—Carrier oils are not super-stars. BUT, here, we’re letting you in on a little secret—Carrier oils matter! Here’s why Amrita’s quality carrier oils are The Secret Sauce for your essential oil blends.
- A Therapeutic Part of Your Remedy: Your carrier oil itself can help reduce inflammation, dryness, itching and accelerate healing of cuts, scrapes, burns, sunburn, injuries, bruising, etc. These oils can help reduce the formation of scar tissue and even help with existing scars. Rosehip seed oil is often used in facials for this reason. The following section “How to Choose” can help you make a choice. Oils can change the skin’s texture, tone, moisturization, and even its pigmentation.
- Organic: No pesticides, no herbicides, and no chemical contamination. In 2015 researchers at the University of California in San Francisco found that 93% of Americans have the widely used herbicide glyphosate in their blood, with children showing the highest levels [Adams, Friesen, Olson, Gerona, 2015]. Pesticides and herbicides are typically oil-soluble. Organic oils should be at the top of your healthy-shopping priorities.
- Cold-Pressed: Cold-pressed oils are not chemically altered and have no solvent residue. Today almost every oil on a store shelf is extracted by boiling or steaming. These are fast and efficient methods and reduce costs but alter the chemistry. And even worse, most are extracted using hexane or similar solvents to squeeze out that last drop. Solvent residues always remain in the oil. Healthy cold-pressed oils are extracted at room temperature using pressure. Pressing is the traditional method of extraction.
- Allergies: 15 million Americans (5%) have food allergies and may react to almond, hazelnut, or apricot pit carrier oils. An additional 1% have a reaction to latex and should avoid avocado carrier oil. Jojoba closely resembles human sebum and rarely produces an allergic reaction. A jojoba reaction is bumps or a rash caused by either impurities or remnants from solvent processing. Organic jojoba like Amrita’s is not solvent extracted. The face may be less sensitive or more sensitive to allergic properties than the rest of the body—if there’s a question, try just a little as a test.
- Nourishment: Your skin is the largest organ of your body, about two square yards total. Oils impact the health of your skin. Mineral oil and petroleum oils aren’t ordinarily used as carrier oils but still rate a mention here. They don’t produce an allergic response, and are very cheap, so they are widely used in cosmetics. But even purified mineral paraffin oils usually contain 30% heterocyclic aromatic compounds and pose a health risk. Mineral oils clog pores and give no nourishment to skin—they prevent moisture loss and that’s it. Good quality carrier oils, by contrast, are composed of fatty acids which are absorbed into and nourish the skin and hair. Carrier oils have a surprising variety of valuable vitamins that help the skin. And pay special attention to sensitive skin, children’s skin or mature skin. Give them the very best.
- Absorption: Avocado oil is thick and is absorbed slowly. Jojoba absorbs quickly—perfect for topical application for absorption of essential oils. Dry skin or damaged skin will absorb more oil.
- Conveniently-sized amber glass bottle: Isn’t this odd to include? But, if you reflect I’d bet you can recall making a blend and leaving it in a dish for your next use. Everybody does it. But, the essential oils will be nearly all gone by the next day. Almost worthless! A two-ounce amber bottle is just right for a remedy you’ll use for a few days. Glass beats plastic, which can be dissolved by essential oils. And amber glass prevents sunlight from damaging the essential oils.
- Part of You: The carrier oil you choose is going to be absorbed into your skin. It will be part of you. It will only gradually diminish away. So the character and quality of oil should appeal to you.
When you take all these eight points together, not even one oil in one hundred will be ideal. THAT’s what makes this The Secret Sauce. Get the full benefit from your essential oils by choosing the best carrier oil for your purpose.
This list can help you pick carreir oils. You don't need to pick just one! Each one is marvelous.
- Almond Oil, Expeller Pressed Sweet almond oil full of the right kind of vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol). Calming for all skin types. It doesn't absorb into the skin too quickly, and it can be used without diluting, making it perfect for luxurious massages. Not organic, but from a quality source and a good economy choice.
- Almond Oil, Organic Full of the right kind of vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol). Calming for all skin types. It doesn't absorb into the skin too quickly, and it can be used without diluting, making it perfect for massages.
- Apricot Kernel Oil Apricot kernel oil is a thick, nourishing carrier oil. Easily absorbed by the skin, it softens, soothes, and heals, and is especially effective on aging and sensitive skin. It is recommended for facials. 100% strength is fine, but normally it is used in a 10%-50% dilution with any of the other carrier oils.
- Avocado Oil Rich, sweet, oily and luscious, avocado oil is full of vitamin E and lecithin, as well as omega-3 and especially omega-6 fatty acids. It is highly moisturizing, making it great for dry, itchy skin and for general skin and hair care. Avocado is a wonderful healing treatment for eczema, psoriasis, sun damage and irritations. Usually diluted at 10% of a base oil. Store in a cool, dark place or in the refrigerator.
- Calophyllum Oil (Tamanu Oil) Calophyllum oil comes from tropical realms. It accelerates new cell growth and healing of wounds. Calophyllum comforts achy joints, rheumatism, arthritis and sciatica. It's non-irritating to the mucous membranes, making it excellent for sensitive areas on the body. It also helps to heal burns, rashes and insect bites. It has a chlorophyll green color, a bit of aroma of its own, and is slow to absorb. Best for ointments and lotions.
- Hazelnut Oil Hazelnut oil has a nutty aroma. It is very penetrating and quickly carries any essential oils into the underlying tissue. It is a gentle and rejuvenating oil. Safe for use without diluting.
- Clear Jojoba Oil or Golden Jojoba Jojoba Oil (Clear) is actually not an oil at all, but a liquid plant wax. The clear Jojoba is refined, while golden Jojoba is unrefined. Jojoba is excellent for all skin types. It’s very safe and non-allergenic. It has a composition similar to our skin’s own oil, which makes it easily absorbed. It’s very nourishing. It may not the best choice for massage because of its quick absorption. On the other hand, it’s not greasy. After massaging in the oil, you don’t need a shower to wash off. It’s all absorbed! It has a very long shelf life.
- Olive Oil Extra Virgin Well known in the kitchen, olive oil is also an excellent carrier oil for inflamed and sensitive skin. It is also a good choice for nail and hair care. “Extra virgin” means it comes from the first pressing.
- Rice Bran Oil Rice bran oil is pressed from the hull and husk of rice. As it is so moisturizing, it is great for mature skin, and it cools normal and sensitive skin.
- Rosehip Seed Oil (Rosa rubiginosa) Rosehip seed oil is luxurious and has extremely potent regenerative properties for the skin. Superb for fine and aging skin, but avoid for skin that is oily or with active acne. Rosehip oil has a very high content of essential fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6. Very regenerative for scar tissue. Limited shelf life - keep it refrigerated. Vitamin E has been added to help protect the unsaturated fatty acids.
- Sunflower Oil, Organic Full of Vitamins E (alpha-tocopherol, the good kind), and K, along with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, sunflower oil is nourishing and conditioning. Sunflower oil also assists in increasing blood flow and regenerating skin cells.
A quick review of how to dilute your essential oil blend into a carrier oil.
|0.5%||2 drops||3 drops||5 drops||12 drops|
|1%||1 drop||3 drops||6 drops||12 drops||24 drops|
|1.5%||1 drop||5 drops||9 drops||18 drops||36 drops|
|2%||2 drops||6 drops||12 drops||24 drops||48 drops|
And as a quick finish to the Secret Sauce subject. Write a label for your bottle! Include the date, the purpose, and the blend. Don’t keep a dozen bottles around, filled with a remedy, but that you can’t remember which one. When a remedy is done, empty and wash the bottle with hot soapy water. Then it’s ready for your newest blend for yourself, or your family, friends, or coworkers. That’s some sauce!
Original Published: 2017-01-18 / Last Modified: 2021-10-11
Posted by Amrita Aromatherapy