Essential oils, also referred to as "essences", are botanical extracts of various plant materials, and do not only originate from flowers, but from herbs, trees and various other plant material.
Intro To Essential Oils
The allure of essential oils often lies in the desire to connect the body and mind. Our mental and physical wellbeing are more intrinsically linked than we frequently suppose. Harmony in the body provides peace in the mind. Lavender oil is an excellent example of the connection between body and mind. It is used to soothe anxiety and holistically treat minor burns and cuts. For mental clarity and pain relief, a few drops of Rosemary oil can reinvigorate wellness.
What many first notice when exploring essential oils is the aroma. The fragrant notes captivate the senses and can spark emotions or feelings. Smell is the most sensitive of the five senses and studies show that nearly 75% of emotions are prompted by scent. Traveling internally through the olfactory cells, aroma interacts with the limbic system and delivers an emotional response. Our Balance blend is especially soothing when gently inhaled.
Even essential oils that are absorbed by the skin exude an aroma that interacts with the limbic system. Take a second, and try to recall the smell of your childhood bedroom, favorite perfume or first Thanksgiving. Do any emotions arise? The feelings evoked by essential oils are extraordinarily powerful.
During a very carefully executed distillation process, essential oils are extracted from leaves, flowers, seeds, roots and resins. The unique combination of harvested plants with scientific processes ensures essential oils retain 100% purity.
Imagine smelling a vibrant garden of roses in a single breath and that’s what you’ll find in Edens Garden Rose oil. An entire rose bush might only produce a single drop of essential oil during distillation, creating highly concentrated oil. In a careful process of boiling fresh plants, steam is captured and transferred to a container. Essential oil slowly separates from the water and is extracted for bottling.
The unique combination of harvested plants with scientific processes ensures essential oils retain 100% purity.
Although most are clear liquids, some essential oils have a warm amber coloring such as Roman Chamomile and Patchouli. Only the essence of the plant is caught in our bottles, making the aroma and usage more potent and remarkably, more beneficial.
Top Middle and Base Notes
Striking a defined and natural balance is crucial when mixing essential oils. To properly categorize essential oils for use in aromatherapy treatments, each are designated into top, middle or base notes. When mixing essential oils, it is usually best to use all three notes in combination to arrive at a balanced and well-defined aroma, especially if you are treating the whole body and not just one aspect of a condition.
Top notes are the most delicate and volatile. Derived from leaves, flowers, and flowering herbs, their aroma evaporates most quickly. With a wide range of uses including stimulating the senses, top note essential oils can be used to treat lethargy, depression or fatigue as well as spark alertness and focus. When mixed with other notes, top notes hit the nose first. And by rousing the limbic system, top note essential oils activate healing and detoxification. Top notes have a lovely lingering effect with a sharpness that activates the senses. Some examples of top notes are Basil, Cinnamon, Clary Sage, Sweet Orange and Peppermint.
When mixing essential oils, it is usually best to use all three notes in combination to arrive at a balanced and well-defined aroma, especially if you are treating the whole body and not just one aspect of a condition.
Middle note essential oils are characteristically well balanced and affect the over-all health of the body. By carefully distilling an entire plant, middle notes are extracted from herbs and spices. Interestingly, middle notes are the most robust and heavy. They create a significant connection between the mind and body. Stiff joints can indicate inflexibility in your life, giving middle notes the unique capacity to treat both physical and mental turmoil. Nutmeg, Juniper, Lavender and Palmarosa are all middle notes.
Base notes possess a richness and solidarity similar to a towering redwood tree. Extracted from the resins and gums of trees, base notes have an earthy quality. Used to calm anxiety, nervousness and anger, base note essential oils have a relaxing effect. Vanilla, Vetiver, Patchouli and Myrrh are essential oils categorized as base notes.
The History of Essential Oils
For centuries, civilizations have utilized the benefits of essential oils. Myrrh was used by the Ancient Grecians and Romans to heal wounds and as act an anti-inflammatory. During the outbreak of the Bubonic Plague in the 12th Century, Cinnamon, Ginger and Sandalwood served as lifesaving antibiotics. In the 1920s, Famous French Chemist Rene-Maurice Gattefosse was badly burned in an accident in his lab and observed that by dipping his skin into Lavender, he eliminated infection and prevented scarring.
Not only are essential oils highly therapeutic, they have antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antifungal and anti-parasitic properties. With hundreds of vitamins and organic compounds, essential oils act as adaptogens that promote homeostasis. Many work on the peripheral and ventral nervous system. Essential oils are non-greasy and require only a few drops to have tremendous effects on emotional wellbeing, physical health or spiritual mindfulness.
In the 1920s, Famous French Chemist Rene-Maurice Gattefosse observed that by dipping his [burned] skin into Lavender, he eliminated infection and prevented scarring.
Many use essential oils to steal moments away to relax and refresh while others embrace essential oils for more mental alertness and lucidity when feeling lethargic or clouded. The healing and holistic medicinal properties of essential oils have been known to treat everything from minor colds to diabetes. Whatever your reason is for using and exploring essential oils, at Edens Garden, we hope it is a lovely and enriching experience.
Essential Oil Terms to Know
Similar to essential oils, absolutes are concentrated, highly-aromatic, oily mixtures extracted from plants. Whereas essential oils can typically be produced through steam distillation, absolutes require the use of solvent extraction. Absolutes have a closer aroma to the actual plant, and are more popular in the perfumery industry.
A natural or artificial substance found within an essential oil that was added after distillation. This is common for cheaply made essential oil. Edens Garden essential oils are never diluted or mixed with additives.
The therapeutic use of essential oils to increase cognitive function, bodily health and mood.
A compound that reduces the size of bodily tissue.
Represents the genus and species of the plant. Essential oils are in Latin and list genus first and species second. The name identifies where each essential oil comes from and defines its properties.
Settles the digestive system and relieves upset stomach problems.
Essential oils that contain similar characteristics but are dissimilar based on a varied chemical makeup. Often due to the climate, altitude or soil in which plants are grown, one chemotype might have a higher concentration of a specific constituent which leads to categorization.
An agent that encourages healing by the formation of scar tissue.
Using a diffuser or spray bottle, essential oils are released into the air.
Mixing a small portion of pure essential oil with carrier oil.
A method used to extract an essential oil from a plant.
A method commonly used to extract citrusy essential oils.
GC/MS (Gas Chromatograph/Mass Spectrometer)
A diagnostic method used by chemists to identify the characteristics of a substance. GC/MS testing is used to classify the chemical makeup of essential oils and verify purity. The process determines if an essential oil has been diluted or mixed with synthetic additives.
A topical application of essential oil that is undiluted.
A strengthening of the nervous system.
When oxygen, light or heat interacts with essential oils, the essential oil begins to deteriorate over time. This can cause the essential oil to become skin irritating.
An important method of determining one’s sensitivities to an essential oil. Simply dab a tiny amount of essential oil onto the skin and wait 24 hours to see if the skin reacts.
The use of the essential oils that increase the skin’s sensitivity to sunlight, UV light or harsh conditions. Be sure to layer sunscreen when using citrusy essential oils.
A substance that promotes feelings of healthy, wellbeing and healing.
A chemical solution used to extract essential oils.
The curative and medicinal properties that promote healing and restorative balance.
The act of applying substances directly to the skin.
The light chemical compounds within essential oils that evaporate quickly into the air. It should be noted that undiluted essential oils contain hundreds of complex compounds.