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Essential Oils 101: Safety

We want you to feel confident when using plant medicine.  Essential oils are to be used with caution, care, and respect.  We hope this guide will help you as you navigate natural healing.

WHAT ARE ESSENTIAL OILS?

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) defines an essential oil as "A product made by distillation with either water or steam or by mechanical processing of citrus rinds or by dry distillation of natural materials.  Following the distillation, the essential oil is physically separated from the water phase", as defined in their Vocabulary of Natural Materials (ISO/D1S9235.2013/Cor 1:2014).

Different methods exist for the removal of the essential oil from the plant material. Distillation (steam, steam/water, and water), and expression (cold pressing of the peel of citrus oils) are two of the most common methods of extraction.  Oils can also be extracted by carbon dioxide (CO2) and maceration, which releases the enzyme-bound essential oil.  Wellness Warrior carries a variety of essential oils and different methods of extraction.

All Wellness Warrior essential oils are organic, therapeutic grade, and certified by USDA and/or QAI. 

All our products undergo GC/MS testing through a third-party prior to reaching our facility.  This testing assures the essential oil is what it claims to be and doesn't contain components a pure oil shouldn't contain.  This testing is really important.  We don't add or take away anything from the essential oil and that's important to know!  In fact, our customers have raved about our commitment to transparency!  We keep records of all product lot numbers coming into our shop and leaving, along with their subsequent tests; this information may be obtained by contacting us.

USING ESSENTIAL OILS SAFELY

There are multiple ways to use essential oils.  When taking essential oils internally, it is always good practice to start with the minimum amount necessary to achieve the desired results.  For example, one drop of lemon essential oil in an 8 oz glass of water would be appropriate to flavor water and receive the health benefits.

TOPICAL USE OF ESSENTIAL OILS

When applying essential oils to the skin, diluting them properly is key to assure you don't have a physical reaction.  It is smart practice to apply a small amount of essential oil (one drop) topically on an area of the body to see how you respond to it.  This process is called Patch Testing.  If reactions occur, simply dilute with a carrier oil.  Carrier oils are vegetable based oils, like coconut, jojoba, perilla, almond, and others, dilute the essential oil so that it can be applied to the skin, covering a greater surface area, and decreasing the risk of skin irritation or overdosing.

When using oils topically, a skin reaction can occur, usually within 24 hours after applying the essential oil.  Localized skin reactions may include irritation, itchiness, rash, and redness.  Localized skin reactions may be soothed by applying a vegetable-based oil directly atop the irritated skin.  Washing with water alone might not cause the reaction to get better since essential oils are oil soluble and repel water.

A systemic reaction may include a headache, dizziness, nausea, or respiratory complaints.  If a systemic reaction occurs, refrain from using the essential oil and seek medical consultation, if appropriate.

ORAL USE OF ESSENTIAL OILS

When we discuss using oils orally, we're talking about putting oils in your mouth, but not swallowing them.  Oral use would include caring for the teeth and gums and a common oil used orally is clove as it provides wonderful oral health.

Many essential oils are not recommended for oral or internal use.  Please read below under INTERNAL USE OF ESSENTIAL OILS to see the recommended list of oils to avoid using internally.

AROMATIC USE OF ESSENTIAL OILS

The aromatic use of essential oils is the most common and safest way essential oils are used.  Aromatically oils can provide a wonderful opportunity to receive the health benefits while limiting topical application or internal use.  Aromatic use is recommended for children, and when dealing with stress, anger, and emotional trauma. 

Essential oils are commonly diffused into the home or office space to provide a clean and refreshing aroma.  Diffusing also provides the ability for an organic air freshener and cleaner!  Use caution when diffusing the same essential oil over long periods of time.  This repeated use in certain individuals can cause a person to become sensitive to the oil.  It is recommended to rotate essential oils frequently when they are being diffused in your home or workspace.

INTERNAL USE OF ESSENTIAL OILS

Some essential oils can be used internally, however, caution must be used when using essential oils internally.  Wellness Warrior does not encourage the internal use of essential oils for all individuals, nor for any child under the age of 6 years old, without consultation.  Wellness Warrior essential oils are organic and therapeutic, meaning they are tested to assure that they do not contain dangerous chemicals that sometimes are present in essential oils that are sourced from contaminated plants, or that are adulterated - which unfortunately is a HUGE money maker in the essential oil industry and many companies do this every day!  We take pride in our finished product and will only provide the safest, cleanest oils to our customers.  With this in mind, we really only advocate essential oils used internally for acute conditions and only the minimal required to address the condition.  Each Wellness Warrior essential oil is clearly marked if it is safe to be used internally.  Please consult with a qualified wellness practitioner before using essential oils internally.

Please avoid using the following essential oils internally without prior professional consultation with a trusted healthcare professional trained in the internal use of essential oils:

Arborvitae
Birch
Carrot seed
Cedar atlas
Cedarwood
Chamomile (blue)
Chamomile (German)
Chamomile (Roman)
Cinnamon Leaf
Cistus
Clove
Cypress
Douglas Fir
Eucalyptus Citriodora
Eucalyptus Globulus
Helichrysum
Mugwort
Myrrh
Palmarosa
Patchouli
Rosemary Cineol
Sage
Sandalwood
Spikenard
Vetiver
White fir
Wintergreen

 

USING ESSENTIAL OILS DURING PREGNANCY

Many essential oils can be used safely during pregnancy, and some should be avoided.

Essential oils SAFE to use during pregnancy include:

Bergamot
Chamomile (German)
Chamomile (Roman)
Clary Sage
Cypress
Frankincense
Geranium
Lavender
Lemongrass
Neroli
Orange
Patchouli
Rose
Rosewood
Sandalwood
Tangerine

Essential oils to AVOID during pregnancy include:

Angelica
Anise seed
Basil
Camphor
Cedarwood
Citronella
Hyssop
Jasmine
Juniper
Lemon balm
Magnolia (Champa / champac / champak)
Marjoram
Melissa
Mustard
Myrrh
Pennyroyal
Peppermint
Rosemary
Sage
Savory
Thyme
Wintergreen