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Carrier Oils

Most essential oils need to be diluted with a carrier oil before used, as the concentration of the aromatic can be too strong and cause side effects such as irritation and toxic reaction. Carrier oils are derived from the fatty parts of plants (such as nuts and seeds) and each carrier oil offers a different combination of therapeutic properties.

Essential oils are distilled from the bark, leaves, roots and other aromatic parts of a plant. Essential oils have a concentrated aroma and can evaporate over time, oxidising and losing their aroma and therapeutic value. Carrier oils can go rancid over time and have a nutty aroma.

Carrier oils can be odourless but generally have a sweet, nutty aroma. If your carrier oil has a strong, bitter odour then it may have gone rancid and should not be used.

Some examples of popular carrier oils:

  • Sweet Almond Oil is considered to be an affordable all-purpose carrier oil to keep on hand.
  • Apricot Kernel Oil has a semi-oily texture which makes it a good choice for use in massage and massage oil blends. It somewhat resembles sweet almond oil in its properties and consistency.
  • Sunflower Oil is considered to be an affordable all-purpose carrier oil. When choosing sunflower oil, strive to get unrefined oil.
  • Grapeseed Oil is commonly used in aromatherapy as it is a fairly all-purpose oil and can be used in a wide array of applications ranging from massage to skin care.
  • Fractionated Coconut Oil is a highly stable, odourless and colourless oil that can be beneficial when you need a really light, penetrating oil or an oil that will not quickly go rancid. Its affordability and shelf life makes it a good oil to use.

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