“Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care”

Here are a few guidelines for “Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care.”

My interest in essential oils started several years ago when I worked in the health and beauty department of a local health food store.

I discovered that when you add essential oils to DIY skincare products, they could address several common issues such as:

  • Hair loss
  • Itchy scalp
  • Dermatitis
  • Acne
  • Nail fungus
  • Large Pores
  • And so much more!

While researching, I learned about some questionable ingredients in many of our standard beauty products and wanted a better option.

As a result, this motivated me to start making DIY skincare products.

So, I started my DIY Skin Care products makeover!  

I planned to replace all of my current skincare, haircare, and body care products with healthier and safer DIY products using essential oils!

However, the biggest mistake I made in the beginning was that when I was looking up information about essential oils, I would skip most of the vital safety information and go right to the recipes.

After all, essential oils are 100% safe. They come from plants, seeds, bark, and resins!

But then again, poison ivy and poison oak are plants too. No one would ever pick those plants and rub them on their skin.

Essential oils can be very safe to use, as long as they are used correctly!

Meanwhile, I continued to search in books and online for recipes. However, some of the online information I came across didn’t seem safe to me, and some of it wasn’t very clear.

I noticed the recommended drops on different sites for making DIY skincare products varied so much per 1oz. I didn’t know what was accurate?

Then I watched a video of a gal who claimed to be a Doctor, and she said:

“I just put a drop of X essential oil on the back of my hand and lick it off” What???

I didn’t know much about essential oils at that time. But, that did not seem to be very good information to be throwing out there to just anyone. (Even the essential oil experts recommend never to use essential oils internally unless under the supervision of a trained clinical Aromatherapist.)

Because certain groups of people may not receive essential oils well, it could cause them some unforeseen severe issues.

*Please understand that we are not offering any medical advice. We do not attempt to diagnose, treat, or cure anything. In addition, we can’t promise that any natural remedy will solve a particular health/skin issue. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your discretion.

These groups are:

  • People with certain health conditions
  • Pregnant women
  • Breastfeeding moms
  • Children under 5yrs
  • The elderly

After seeing this, I rethought my choice to skip important safety information. I started to question whether or not I was safely using essential oils?

Through all of my searching, I found Aromahead Institute and loved its approach to teaching and learning.

I decided if I would be making products using essential oils for my friends and family and using them for myself, I needed to enroll in the “Aromahead Aromatherapy Certification Program”!  

Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care

Therefore, I did, enroll that is, and earned my certificate as a “Certified Aromatherapist.”

Now I know how to use essential oils safely, and I have many resources to go to when I have questions!

 

Disclosure:  This post contains affiliate links.

Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care products comes down to a few rules. (1)

1. “Safe Dilutions”

Some essential oils can irritate the skin, so they are often diluted for safety. Essential oils are typically diluted with a carrier like water, witch hazel, aloe, or carrier oils.

Carrier oils are made from plants and plant parts. They’re not volatile the way essential oils are, and they tend to be heavier than essential oils.

Some great carrier oils are jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, argan oil, rosehip oil, and fractionated coconut oil, to name a few.

2. “Blending Guidelines”

This is so very important to know because the number of drops you use per 1oz (30 ml) of carrier oil will determine:

A. If your blend will be effective at addressing the skin concern, it’s made for

B. And even more importantly, it will determine how safe the blend will be to use on the skin.

 “Blending Guidelines and Dilutions” from Aromahead Institute: (1)

“There are approximately 500–600 drops of essential oil in a 1oz (30 ml) bottle.

1% of 500 drops = 5 drops ~ 1% of 600 drops = 6 drops

  • Use the following dilutions, for pregnant women and children, for anyone with a compromised immune system, and for using directly on the face:

1% dilution = 5–6 drops total of essential oil in 1 oz. (30 ml) of carrier

2% dilution = 10–12 total drops of essential oil in 1 oz. (30 ml) carrier.

  • Specific injury of muscle, tendon, and bone: 3–10% depending on the individual, age, situation, and oils being used:

3% dilution = 15–18 total drops of essential oil in 1 oz. (30 ml) carrier.

  •  For local issues such as chest congestion:

3–10% depending on the individual, age, situation, and oils being used (If 1% dilution is 5–6 drops, then a 10% dilution is 50–60 drops)

  •  If the problem is acute and severe, you can only go up to 25% dilution for short-term use.

Acute situations include headaches, superficial cuts, bee stings, and burns. (1)

Severe problems include muscle cramps, intense spasms, significant bruising, or pain.

  • “Neat” (means undiluted essential oil and no carrier oil) oils can be used for the following:

~ Small areas, local use, acute situations, short-term use. These must be the highest quality, non-oxidized oils. (1)

 

Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care

3. Use “High-Quality Essential Oils.”

These oils will be therapeutic grade, GC/MS tested, and unadulterated. Tisserand and Young(2) define adulteration as:

Intentional dilution or fabrication” of essential oils.

He goes on to say that essential oils can be adulterated with odorous or non-odorous substances to dilute an essential oil or absolute. (2)

Odorous adulterants; can include other essential oils, essential oil fractions or residues, synthetic aroma chemicals similar to those found in the oil, or aromachemicals not found in the oil. (2)

Non-odorous adulterants, or extenders; include substances such as ethanol, mineral oil, isopropyl myristate, glycols, phthalates, and fixed oils such as rapeseed and cottonseed. Tisserand and Young (2)

Adulteration can happen at any point, from distillation/extraction to reaching the end-user.

Some points along the way can include: (2)

  • Co-gathering or co-distillation of several varieties (for example, several types of lavender gathered and distilled together)
  • A distiller may adulterate an essential oil before selling it to a distributor.
  • Distributors may adulterate an essential oil before selling it to a retailer.
  • The retailer may adulterate an essential oil before selling it to a customer.

4. Never use essential oils that have “Oxidized.” (2)

Degradation/oxidation is the natural process of the chemical breakdown of essential oils.

This commonly occurs from oxygen, heat, and light. The length of time that this process takes to occur can vary significantly based on the essential oil and storage conditions.

It is essential to reduce exposure to oxygen, heat, and light.

Some things that will help to slow down the process of degradation/oxidation of essential oils include storing them in:

  • Dark glass containers
  • Store in a dark and cool environment like the refrigerator
  • Keep essential oil caps tightly sealed to minimize exposure to oxygen

5. Lastly!

Be mindful when using essential oils with pregnant women, breastfeeding women, young children, the elderly, or anyone with a compromised immune system.

Consequently, using essential oils in an unsafe manner with any of these groups could cause some unforeseen issues.

If you are ever unsure, the safest thing to do is NOT use essential oils with these groups.

Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care

Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care rules quick view:

  • “Safe Dilutions” – Best to use essential oils with a carrier oil
  • “Blending Guidelines” – Use the correct number of drops per 1oz. (30ml)
  • “High-Quality Essential Oils” – For best results, use oils that are therapeutic grade, GC/MS tested, and unadulterated
  • “Oxidized” – Never use essential oils that have oxidized
  • “Be mindful” – Do NOT use essential oils with anyone in an unsafe manner; this could cause some unforeseen issues.

Find all of your DIY supplies Here!

In Conclusion:

When I first started making my DIY skincare, I wasn’t following these safety guidelines.

I know; I was overdoing it with the number of essential oil drops I used per ounce.

My thinking, at the time, was, “If one drop makes my face look younger, then 500 drops will make my face look 30 again”… Yippee!!!

A bit of an exaggeration, only to make a point. Well, unfortunately, that isn’t the case.

By overusing essential oils in this unsafe way, I was causing problems with my skin.

As a result, I started having some skin irritations on my face, and my eyes started itching and burning.

Once I learned about the dilution chart and guidelines for blending safely, it made a difference in my DIY skincare products!!!

Take a look at this popular post with one of my most effective DIY essential oil products called:

“Healing Itchy Scalp with Essential Oils”

 

Do you make DIY skincare? If so, have you tried using essential oils in your DIY skincare? Let me know what your favorite essential oils are! Leave a comment below!

 

Here’s to “Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care!”

Susie ∞

 
 
 
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Thank you so much for your support!

 


*Please understand that we are not offering any medical advice. We do not attempt to diagnose, treat, or cure anything. In addition, we can’t promise that any natural remedy will solve a particular health/skin issue. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your discretion.


Disclosure:  This post contains affiliate links. Blooming in Midlife.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. If you click a link on this site and purchase, I may receive an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you. I appreciate your support of Blooming in Midlife. ∞


References:

  1. Aromahead Institute – https://www.aromahead.com/
  2. Tisserand and Young – https://roberttisserand.com/
 

6 Replies to ““Safely using Essential Oils in DIY Skin Care””

  1. This was so helpful! I’ve heard about the benefits of using essential oils but had no clue where to start with safety and mixing so this was absolutely perfect for my needs! Thank you!

  2. This is so good. Very thorough, Susie. I love essential oils but was still unsure about some of the details.

    As you know, they can be quite strong so it’s better to be cautious and know what to mix and use, and how. I’ve definitely been guilty of overdoing it, too.

    I’ll be using this as a reference. Thank you.

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