Do essential oils expire?

If stored properly, essential oils last approximately one to ten years. There are many factors to contribute to expiration, such as storage and how the oils are distilled. Cold pressed citrus oils have the shortest shelf life, approximately one year. As where, steam distilled essential oils have a shelf life of at least 2 years.

What do I do with expired essential oils?

Do NOT wash essential oils down the drain or flush them down the toilet. It could contaminate underground drinking water aquifers. Many counties have different rules to comply with so you should contact your local hazardous waste disposal site for instructions. Alternative ways to use up expired essential oils would be to diffuse, create cleaners, bug repellents, air fresheners, or candles.

Should I store essential oils in the freezer?

Pure essential oils don’t contain water, so they won’t fully freeze. They could possibly crystallize but the quality shouldn’t be affected. A refrigerator may be a better option. Many people prefer to store their citrus essential oils in the fridge as it prolongs their shelf life.

What does it mean to apply neat?

Applying “neat” means to apply essential oils undiluted, which in most cases, is not recommended.

Is using more better?

No, essential oils are very potent. If you would like to cover a large area, use more carrier oil.  It’s better to start slow, especially as a beginner. It’s always safer to reapply rather to risk a rash.

Is there a way to get a quicker result?

Try a hot moist compress over the skin to open pores and allow essential oils to penetrate deeper into the tissue.

Is it okay to ingest essential oils?

There is much controversy in ingesting essential oils. Many times, MLM companies casually suggest doing so but there is simply not enough research on these potent essential oils. People have even experienced permanent damage, including scarring, ulcers, liver damage and kidney damage. Some of these cases have even been verified they were the result of ingesting “therapeutic grade essential oils” by physicians. For this reason, ingesting oils should be avoided but if one finds it absolutely necessary then they should consult with a certified aromatherapist.

What do I do if I get a bad reaction?

Since essential oils are not water-soluble, you should rub carrier oil over the irritated skin to further dilute the essential oil.

If you get a rash from a diluted essential oil, discontinue use of that oil.
If you get essential oil in your eye, apply milk or carrier oil (such as Jojoba) in your eye until the discomfort subsides. If stinging persists, seek medical attention.

Is sun exposure safe when using essential oils?

Some essential oils (mainly citric oils) are photosensitive so direct sun exposure should be avoided as it may cause a rash, pigmentation, or increase the chance you will get a sunburn.

Are fragrance oil the same as essential oil?

No. Fragrances are created in a lab to mimic the scent of essential with synthetic chemicals. They are intended for perfumes or beauty products and not for aromatherapy purposes.

Do medical doctors or hospitals use essential oils?

As of 2013, it was reported that over 50 hospitals are using essential oils to increase health benefits.  As more research is conducted it is expected that more health practitioners will begin to introduce essential oils into their facility.

How long have people used essential oils?

The earliest mention of essential oils was recorded in the 1200’s by an herbalist who studied plants and experimented with their uses.

Why is there such a large range in price concerning different brands of essential oils?

More expensive doesn’t always mean better quality. For an example, MLM companies charge more for their oils because everyone in their upline collects a profit. You would also be surprised on how many different companies purchase their oils from the same distillery. Researching companies prior to purchase is strongly encouraged.

Is it true that the FDA requires essential oils to be only 5% pure in order to claim they are 100% pure?

No, the FDA does not currently hold essential oils to specific standards, instead they view essential oils more generally as aromatherapy or cosmetic products.  Though this myth is often told by the overpriced distributors who try to excuse their costly price tags as “more pure” than other brands.

Why haven’t essential oils been researched more in depth?

It boils down to money and finding funds for research. The pharmaceutical companies aren’t motivated to research plant based medicinal oils because essential oils are not able to be patented. Instead, they focus on laboratory generated drugs that can be marketed to the masses to generate huge profits.

How should I store essential oils?

Essential oils do not like extremes of heat or light so find a cool dark place and keep them in a dark colored glass bottle.

How much should I dilute essential oils when applying topically?

As a general rule, two drops of essential oil per 5ml of carrier oil. For children and the elderly, apply just one drop per 5ml.

Where is the best place to apply essential oils?

The soles of your feet is one of the least sensitive parts of your body and also has large pores which allows the oils to be absorbed quickly. Many people also like to apply to bottom of feet for reflexology purposes. Though, essential oils can be applied many other areas such as, chest, back, temples, ears, neck and shoulders.

What should I use as a carrier oil?

Coconut oil is the most popular as it is very gentle on the skin. Some others include: sunflower oil, avocado oil, jojoba oil, and sweet almond oil. Do NOT use baby oil or cooking oils.