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  • Essential Oils Guide

Guide To The Most Popular Essential Oils



Bergamot (Citrus Bergamia)

Most commonly known for the unique flavour it gives to Earl Grey Tea, this top note, cold pressed oil has a fresh and fruity scent with slight balsamic undertones. Great as an air freshener, when used in a vaporiser it disperses unpleasant odours and cigarette smoke as well as acting as an insect deterrent. Calming and soothing, it is good for use with anxiety and depression as it is claimed to uplift the spirits and emotions and raise confidence. When diluted can be used for PMT and it is extremely effective on oily, blemished and sensitive skin. In addition can also be used as a douche to combat urinary tract infections.


Cedarwood Virginian (Juniperus Virginiana)

A steam-distilled oil with a base level, mild sweet-balsamic tone, often used in incense and room sprays. Soothing and steadying in stressful situations. Astringent properties make it good for greasy skin and hair whilst it can ease dandruff. Repels mosquitoes, moths, woodworm, rats and mice.


Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globules)

Top note oil obtained by the steam distillation of the leaves. Has a harsh, camphoraceous odour with woody undertones making it useful for clearing congestion either inhaled or as a chest rub, mixed with carriers. Can also be used as a skin freshener.


Geranium (Pelargonium Graveolens)

A middle to top note, steam distilled oil, with a rosy-sweet, fresh, floral scent. Best known for balancing, calming, relaxing and stabilising body and mind. Commonly used in skin care products for both fragrance and cleansing properties, and as it is excellent for all skin types. Use in massage for cellulite and stretch marks. Excellent for the post-natal period, can help ease engorged breasts, depression and haemorrhoids.


Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia)

Steam distilled, middle to top note oil with floral-herbaceous scent and balsamic undertones. The most versatile and useful oil, Lavender has an abundance of uses. It relaxes and soothes the mind & body, and is number one for use in first aid kit at home. Will blend happily with many other oils for use in massage, vaporised, bath preparations and inhaled from a pillow or hankie. This is the only oil where neat application to the skin is suggested, and then this should be done with great care. Neat application can aid in neutralising insect bites, stings and nettle rash, and easing headaches, wounds and burns. Gentle enough for use with babies and children (diluted only), can be useful for anxiety, sleep problems and travel sickness. Combats dandruff and PMT, and can speed the process of childbirth without increasing the severity of contractions.


Lemon (Citrus Limon)

Top note oil, cold pressed from the peels of the fruits, with a crisp and fresh aroma. Its astringent properties make it good to use for oily hair and skin in hair rinses, skin toners and skin fresheners. Said to have a tonic effect on the circulatory system making it good for use in massage for easing varicose veins and reducing cellulite. Excellent for removing sticky and gluey deposits from around the house (do not use on polished wood, always spot test surfaces first), and for neutralising odours, for example in the microwave or fridge.


Orange (Sweet) (Citrus Sinensis)

A top note oil, steam-distilled from the ripe peel of the fruit, with a fresh, fruity scent that is uplifting and energising. Use as a skin conditioner, muscle ease and relaxant. Combine with Neroli or Lavender for a calming sleep blend.


Patchouli (Pogostemon Cablin)

A musky, sweet and persistent fragrance popular in the 1960’s and 70’s; top note, steam distilled oil. Add to hair conditioner to combat dandruff and apply to scaly skin in a carrier to encourage regeneration of new cells.


Peppermint (Mentha Piperita)

A steam distilled oil with a sweet and rich smell, a must for the home medical cabinet. Cooling and clearing for the nasal passages. Add to bath to cool and deodorise feet and to calm itchy skin. Massage into abdomen for upset stomach or inhale for nausea. Blend with Lavender and Marjoram as a rub or inhalation. Daytime mental stimulant, especially good when studying. Combine with Eucalyptus to deter vermin.


Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)

Steam distilled oil with strong top and middle notes, a fresh, minty-herbaceous scent and woody and balsamic undertones. This is a physical and mental stimulant that helps to achieve mental clarity and revive poor memory. Smell during exams or when mentally fatigued, use in a bath after an illness or for hangovers. Help to ease tired, stiff and overworked muscles, especially when combined with Lavender and Marjoram. Use as a rinse for dry or dark hair, to combat dandruff and deter lice.


Tea Tree (Melaleuca Alternifolia)

A popular steam-distilled, middle note oil with a fresh, camphoraceous odour. Used in Aboriginal medicine for centuries, its antiseptic properties are more than 10 times as strong as carbolic acid. Scientific research has found it to be effective against bacteria, fungi and viruses. Use to combat hair lice, dandruff and other skin complaints. Another home medical box essential, along with Peppermint and Lavender. Combine with Lemon Tea Tree for a wider antibacterial spectrum and fungicidal effect.


Ylang Ylang (Cananga Odorata Comores)

Steam-distilled, top to middle note oil with a sweet, soft, floral scent and balsamic, spicy and creamy top notes. Dilute well as used too strongly can cause headaches. Historically known for aphrodisiac properties. Use in general skincare, especially oily skin, in hair rinses and for stressful situations.