Why are essential oils so popular?
The answer is simple - essential oils are one of the most natural & rewarding scent-based products. There is a boundless variety of essential oil scents, all having unique, healing benefits. From lavender's heroic ability to calm the mind and reduce stress, and peppermint tension soothing energy, perfect for muscle aches and pains.
However, a popular question that I am always asked is: "How are essential oils made?"
Read on to learn more about essential oil and the process of 'cold-pressing'.
What are Essential Oils?
Essential oil is oil/liquid which has been extracted from a plant of plant matter. There are a variety of plant types and products from which essential oil is extracted, for example, herbs, flowers, weeds, fruits, seeds, bark, resin, and sometimes even vegetables. These oils have many uses - the most common uses of essential oils are for aromatherapy, culinary, and cosmetic purposes.
There are different ways to extract essential oil, the most popular techniques being cold-pressing or steam distillation. Once the oil is extracted, you are left with a robust and fragrant liquid which is then diluted and sold.
Ancient Essential Oils
Essential oils and other aromatic plant products have been cultivated for thousands of years, commonly burned as incense and used in perfumery, medicine, cosmetics, and as a food additive.
Essential oils date back to around 300 BC when they were first cultivated within areas of India and China. They then became a significant part of Chinese medicine; a large discovery around this time was that of the healing properties of plants and their extractions.
Essential oil was not long after discovered by the ancient Egyptians. They mostly burnt essential oils extracted from sacred resins, herbs, and flowers. This was seen as a way to connect them to higher entities and spirits. Essential oils became a prized product within ancient Egypt - those in possession of certain essential oils were deemed holy and important. Many priests, kings, Pharaohs, and other people of importance, were cleansed with essential oils, sometimes even during the mummification process.
Essential oil and its popularity remains today - many modern religious and spiritual people use essential oil in their day-to-day lives.
What Does Cold-Pressed Mean?
Cold pressing is a method commonly used to extract the oils and juices from different plants and plant products. It involves the grinding or pressing of a plant substance, whether manually or through a machine. The importance is to keep the temperature below 120C as heat can interfere with the oil's natural properties.
Cold pressing is mostly used on fruits, seeds, nuts, and vegetables as well as, occasionally flowers and herbs. Some use the cold pressing method to make juices or cooking oils, and others use it for aromatherapy essential oils.
How to Burn Essential Oils
Burning essential oils is simple, however, ensuring you do it safely is most important. Firstly, Please Consider:
Where you burn your essential oil(s):
~ On a heatproof surface.
~ Away from any objects that can catch alight.
~ Out of reach from children and pets.
~ In an open and ventilated space.
~ Leave unattended.
~ Leave alone in the room with children or pets.
~ Touch the burner, candle, or oil when burning.
~ There is nothing on your arms with the potential of catching alight.
~ You leave the burner to cool for 30 minutes before touching it.
~ You light a tea light candle with a long lighter or match stick.
~ No one is allergic or intolerant to the essential oil(s) you burn.
What Do I Need To Burn My Essential Oils?
You will need:
- An oil warmer
- Your chosen essential oil(s)
- A tea light candle
- A long match stick
- Or a long lighter
How Do I Burn It?
Follow our step-by-step guide on burning essential oils.
1. Read Safety Rules:
2. Make Sure You Have Everything Ready To Go:
3. Set Up Your Space:
Make sure your chosen room is spacious, well-ventilated, and as comfy as possible. Consider factors: temperature, lighting, sounds, and ambience.
4. Place a Tea Light Candle In Warmer:
Place an unlit tea light candle into the hole of your oil warmer, below where your oil will burn. There should be a surface to place it on.
5. Fill With Water:
Fill the top bowl-like surface of your oil warmer with water: 3/4s of the height.
6. Add Your Oils:
Add your chosen oil or oils to your water. Check the label for the recommended amount.
7. Light Your Candle:
Light the tea-light candle with a long match stick or lighter.
Burn for 10-25 minutes, or until the water has evaporated.
Our Favourite Cold-Pressed Essential Oils
1. Sweet Orange
Sweet Orange essential oil is sweet, zingy, and cleansing - not only does it smell amazing, but it is enriched with magical healing properties.
It has natural soothing and uplifting abilities, and with that comes the power to ease symptoms coinciding with anxiety, stress, and depression.
The scent of Sweet Orange can help to remove negative energies within the adrenal gland, thus allowing for dopamine hormones to be released through your bloodstream. This can help reduce unruly mood swings, irritation, unhappiness, self-depreciation, and lack of motivation. It can also help improve brain function/health, thus having a great impact on our sense of concentration.
Sweet Orange essential oil is commonly used in aromatherapy for its soul-healing essence. You can also find it in cosmetics, as a food additive, and in other scented products.
Thanks to its natural anti-inflammatory and skin-healing properties Sweet Orange essential oil makes for a fantastic ingredient for skin creams, skin ointments, and facial cleansers. It can help to reduce skin inflammation causing acne, rashes, and complexion issues.
Lemon is one of the more popular scents, and there is no denying why. Its unique, fresh, and inviting citrusy scent is like no other. However, what people don't know is that Lemon has hundreds of natural healing properties - and its essential oil is deemed one of the most cleansing ever!
Just like Sweet Orange, Lemon essential oil has robust mood-boosting and energy-uplifting properties, making it a popular aromatherapy tool. Many spiritually inclined people apply or burn Lemon essential oil when meditating - it is known to keep spirits high, reduce stress, and ease tension, thus assisting focus and spiritual connection.
Lemon essential oil also has anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and pain-relieving benefits. It can improve our immunity response, thus assisting recovery from illnesses and cold-like symptoms such as sore throats and blocked sinuses.
People enjoy Lemon-based cosmetics such as creams and soaps. Not only are they immensely odour-reducing, but Lemon-based products have antimicrobial properties that are known to assist wound recovery and improve complexion.
Also, let's not forget Lemon essential oils can fend off those nasty midges.
Grapefruits are a required taste due to their bitter and tangy flesh, however, their sweet and citrusy scent makes them a popular cleansing essential oil and home fragrance.
Grapefruit essential oil is naturally soul, body, and mind soothing, the perfect combination for relieving anxiety, stress, tension, and negativity. Grapefruit is commonly used for aromatherapy purposes; it is also a popular scent for meditation, worship, and detoxing.
The main component of a Grapefruit is 'limonene', a common compound found in most citrus fruits. Limonene has robust antibacterial and anti-inflammatory components, thus supporting immunity strength, injury recovery, and illness prevention.
Burning this calming fragrance is perfect for stressful moments such as studying, working, or general stress!
Bergamot is another citrus fruit, one that has great similarities to Sweet Orange, however, it is also one of the more unheard-of fruits. And why, is unknown to us. Bergamot has a zingy, sweet, and fresh aroma making for the perfect summery scent.
Bergamot essential oil makes for the perfect scent-mixing oil - it complements beautifully with fragrances such as Sandalwood, Rosemary, and Lavender. Because of its citrusy aroma, it also balances nicely with other sweet essential oils.
Bergamot essential oil is another fan favourite for reducing anxiety and stress-related symptoms. It produces calming, anti-inflammatory properties able to ease tensions such as muscle pains, headaches, and sore throats. Many also use bergamot essential oil as a meditation tool.
Though relaxing, Bergamot is also energising - it can help to boost focus whilst keeping spirits and motivation high.
The Bottom Line
Cold pressing is the perfect way to obtain the healing properties within a fruit/seed/plant and ensure their scent remains. Essential oils all have unique benefits that relate to the plant it has been extracted from, however, one thing is for certain, each essential oil scent is naturally healing, soothing, and Chakra cleansing.