Using Leslie’s list as an example, several of the oils on her list are known to be phototoxic, but since she’s not applying her blend to her skin in any way, she doesn’t have to worry about that so much. Instead, she’s more concerned with some of the oils being irritating the the mucous membranes as she will be diffusing this recipe so she decides to diffuse her blend for short periods of time only to minimize this possibility.
Most commonly, essential oils are used in an essential diffuser together with water. Aromatherapy works quite well over our olfactory system (=sense of smell) as many emotions can be triggered by certain cents alone. While there are other ways to use essential oils, diffuser blending is a fun art and hobby on its own that many essential oil enthusiasts enjoy.
For a more citrus-y scent that will calm any strong emotions you might be feeling before bed, try combining four drops of bergamot, four drops of frankincense, and two drops of vetiver. Adding frankincense into the mix will soothe any wired thoughts in your brain that might be keeping you awake, relieve any bodily tension you're unknowingly holding on to, and squash any nighttime insomnia that's interrupting your beauty sleep.
Joan Marie, each brand of essential oils are different. For example, I used a cough drop recipe from Dr. Eric Z with my doTERRA and Young Living Oils, I needed less. If I had known half of the amount may have worked, I wouldn’t have wasted so many precious drops of oil. I even tried the recipe over and it still turned to syrup only. Also for babies, you can only use maybe 1-3 drops per Tablespoon carrier oil and more essential oils for adults.
ROSE and GERANIUM. These two essential oils have similar floral scents, and both have been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, on their own and in combination with other essential oils. Some sleep experts recommend valerian as an essential oil for sleep aromatherapy. Valerian taken as a supplement can be highly beneficial for sleep. I wrote about valerian’s benefits for sleep and stress, here. But the smell of valerian is highly stinky! I recommend trying geranium or rose instead.
Hi there – thanks for a great article, I am just starting out in using essential oils and this has been really helpful. I have just made my first batch up today of blends (Relaxing: lavender, bergamot & rosewood. And insect repellent: lavender, peppermint & rosewood. I don’t have a large stock on EO’s yet so limited to what I can use at the moment). However I am little stumped regarding the dilution rates? In your article you gave a 10% and 20%, are these okay to use on the skin? I read on another page that a 2% dilution should be used on the skin? So more like 1 drop of essential oil blend to 4 tsp of carrier oil. Which is correct please? Also, what dilution rate would you recommend on young children? Thanks 🙂
This is the point where the actual essential oils are needed, and as I’m sure you’re well aware, essential oils vary in price depending on the company you purchase your oils from. Some people prefer big MLM companies with higher priced oils, others prefer family-owned suppliers with mid-range prices, and some prefer well-known small businesses with lower priced essential oils. I say, to each his own. Just do your research and know how to choose high-quality essential oils before you purchase any.
Someone may have mentioned this already, but if a company makes certain claims about how their product should be used (i.e. reduces inflammation, relieves stress, heals wounds, etc.), they are required to label their product as a drug under FDA laws. Any product that is declared as a drug must include additional information on their labeling and are subject to other regulations regarding drugs. Companies that declare their EOs are therapeutic are also responsible for supporting the therapeutic or medicine claims made on their labels. Most companies, however, do not claim their EOs are therapeutic or medicinal is because they do not want to have the extra oversight and responsibility that comes with such a claim. There are other specific things they avoid putting on their labels and additional cautions made to ensure their EOs are not considered medicinal, even if their oils are the same content and grades as other “therapeutic” oils on the market.
I'm new to using essential oils and sensitive to strong smells so it took a while to figure out how much was enough for me and what was too much! The smell is great, kind of sweet and with a hint of spice. It is too strong for me if i use more than one drop but it has worked well for me and actually does help control my anxiety. I will definitely be using this long term and buying it again!
Hi Zeyad, I’m not sure I understand what you’re asking in your first question. Are you wanting to know how much of the essential oil you add to the alcohol? It would depend on what you’re using this blend for and at what strength you want it. As far as how to get it to stay on your clothes for a long time, that too will depend on the blend and the strength. Make sure you’re using each of the three notes in your blend. Remember the base note oil is the one that will linger the longest. Also, the dilution percentage will matter. The stronger the dilution, the more it will smell. For example a 1% dilution won’t smell as strong as a 3% dilution will. Hope that helps more!
Well, they may be the same type of essential oil, but quality can be different among companies. Now I’m not one to jump on the bandwagon of one brand over another, but the reason I listed the YL and doTERRA as internal and the others as external is because that’s how they market their products… not because I say it’s okay or even use them that way. As I said in the post, I don’t use EOs internally… I’ve never needed to, but if I were going to, I’d probably go with one of these two brands over some of the other ones. If you wanna see comparisons of EO brands, check out Lea Harris’ site – Learning About EOs – she has testing done of many of the major brands and compares them to each other. It’s very interested when you are concerned about quality. Hope that answers your question… thank you!
ROSE and GERANIUM. These two essential oils have similar floral scents, and both have been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, on their own and in combination with other essential oils. Some sleep experts recommend valerian as an essential oil for sleep aromatherapy. Valerian taken as a supplement can be highly beneficial for sleep. I wrote about valerian’s benefits for sleep and stress, here. But the smell of valerian is highly stinky! I recommend trying geranium or rose instead.
Organic Infusions, Inc is a farm direct, wholesale essential oil supplier committed to purity. During inhalation of an authentic certified organic or wildcrafted therapeutic grade essential oil, you are connecting to the very life force of the plant. The energetic vibration of the plant unites with the body harmonics within each of us. Organic Infusions understands that when aromatherapy essential oils are altered by artificial means, the precious essence of those oils is forever changed. For this reason Organic Infusions does not carry essential oils that have been diluted, altered, or synthetically modified.
When you start your diffuser blend, please start conservatively. A small amount of essential oil can produce a significant aroma. Be careful to not overload the diffuser blend right when you start pouring your first drops into it. Sometimes, the essential oil bottle droppers release the oils quite quickly. Start with a low pouring angle so the oil drops don’t come out too quickly for you, and you can accurately stop the flow after 1-2 drops.
Aaaah… sleep! Such a popular and much talked about topic. Lack of sleep can be harmful to any individual’s health and well-being, while adequate sleep assists in the retention of stamina and provision of energy that fuels you to function all day long. With an increase in everyday stress levels, hypertension, and the overall pace of life, individuals are resorting to all sorts of things to help improve sleep.
The other brands, while cheap, seem really watered down and have very “off” aromas. It worries me to use them because I suspect there are some solvents or chemicals used. They do not claim therapeutic grade. One bottle of Rocky Mountain’s immune boosting blend only lasted me a week when diffusing it, but a bottle of doTERRA’s comparable blend, OnGuard, lasted me several months. The difference in price can seem dramatic, but when you have to use 10 drops of one oil to get the same effects of 1 drop of another… they even out.
HELP I’m actually planning on making some home heat pads with jasmine rice. My plan was to use dried lavender and rosemary. I saw oils and a fixative would help the scent last in the herbs. So, making a “perfume blend” with lavender as my strongest scent, then rosemary, and oakmoss absolute as my fixative. I was going to put the rosemary and lavender buds in separate bowls with the majority of the rice in the lavender but a smaller portion set with the rosemary…then add a few drops of the essential oils to the separate bowls (rosemary probably 4-6) (lavender 8-12). After they’ve dried I’d like to combine everything and add my oak moss absolute … I want 2-3 drops I just have no idea how to help that spread TBH but this IS my plan-really hoping if you have any advice or experience about my plans to please share before I ruin everything lol THANK YOU!
I came upon your post while doing a search on essential oils and absolutes. I love your writing style, and overall website design, so that you for this lovely post. Here’s a question for you Do you have experience blending the two? I believe they need an emulifier to make them mix since one is distilled with water and the other via an alcohol process. Any suggestions on a natural emulating agent that will keep these two blended together nicely?
You can definitley combine both, Elizabeth. The ratio is totally your choice depending on what helps you. One thing you could do would be to make two separate personal inhalers (one with rosemary and one with lavender) and take a few deep breaths of the rosemary as needed, then, if you start feeling too anxious, start using the lavender one to calm you a bit. Maybe try it BEFORE you take a test… like during a study session, to see if it helps or not. Best of luck in your studies… I remember a lot of late nights getting ready for those big tests!

Keep in mind that there are not absolute rights and wrongs when it comes to essential oil categories. Information can sometimes vary from site to site and book to book, and you may need to check in more than one place. The more you use essential oils and become familiar with them, the easier it will be for you to categorize them based off how they smell to you.
For sleep: A body of research shows that essential oils can provide relief for disrupted sleep and improve sleep quality in adults. A 2017 study compared the effects of aromatherapy and acupressure massage on sleep quality and overall quality of life in women. Researchers found that a blend of sleep-promoting essential oils worked more effectively to improve both sleep quality and quality of life than acupressure. The blended oil was also more effective at improving sleep than a single essential oil, lavender.
The other brands, while cheap, seem really watered down and have very “off” aromas. It worries me to use them because I suspect there are some solvents or chemicals used. They do not claim therapeutic grade. One bottle of Rocky Mountain’s immune boosting blend only lasted me a week when diffusing it, but a bottle of doTERRA’s comparable blend, OnGuard, lasted me several months. The difference in price can seem dramatic, but when you have to use 10 drops of one oil to get the same effects of 1 drop of another… they even out.
I almost always give my kids baths in the evening (same goes for me) as a way to relax before bed so we use a lot of relaxing oils like lavender and chamomile or grounding oils like patchouli and vetiver. If I give them a bath in the middle of the day for some reason I’ll use more uplifting/energizing oils. Citrus oils mostly, but there are others that work great in those blends too like mint oils. Of course I’m always careful about safety precautions with EOs and using the correct ones with my kids. Best of luck with your bath melts. I’ve never tried those before so I’ll have to put that on my to-do list. They look wonderful!

Hi Megan! I’m new to oils, and I’m looking specifically for oils that help with anxiety, depression, insomnia, and colds/flu. I have right now sweet orange, lemongrass, frankincense, tea tree, peppermint, rosemary, eucalyptus, and lavender. Could you offer some direction/advice on where to start with what I have? I would be using them by diffusing with a diffuser or using the steam from taking a shower if that helps. Thanks!
You’ll also want to go back through your list and evaluate your essential oils for safety. The safety of an essential oil will largely be determined based on how it is used (inhalation, topical, internal), and this can be a complex topic that will require more research on your part. Most essential oil suppliers will have safety information in their product descriptions so this can be a good place to look as can other websites and books dedicated to essential oil safety.

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, and publisher who earned his English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign, Urbana (USA). He is the co-founder of a literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and calls the most beautiful places in the world his office. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.
I really enjoyed this post and then I read you’re bio at the end and I liked it even more. I’m about 5 years late in reading it but better late than never. I am new to blending and have been reading whatever I can about techniques and I think your input has really helped me embrace the fact that this is as much of an art as it is a science and although there is a lot of chemistry involved, intuition and patience play a big role in it too. It’s really helped me prioritize what I want to accomplish and this article even helped make blending a little less intimidating/overwhelming. Thank you again for your help and God bless!!
Thanks for the comment. So are you saying that unless the oil is expensive, it’s probably not pure? I understand what you’re saying about the sandalwood oil. I’m sure that’s the case for a lot of oils. I know it’s that way with herbs. Some herbs you harvest the first year, some the second, and it even makes a difference when it comes to the part of the plant you use. I’m just wondering if there’s a way to really tell if one is pure… for the lay person of course. Also, where were you trained at? I’m not aware of many aromatherapy schools so it’s always nice to hear of more.

It’s worth it to have a high quality diffuser to diffuse essential oils. This Smiley Daisy Essential Oil Diffuser, Quite Cool Mist Humidifier, 350 ml has been around for a long while and has great reviews. Smiley Daisy is a cold air diffuser, as well as a humidifier, which is great because it releases moisture into the air and is helpful in providing relief for dry skin, dry throat and cold and flu symptoms such as irritated nasal passages and more. Order below:
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