Essential oils are special oils extracted from plants; they can be used for a variety of purposes such as aromatherapy as well as hair and skin health. Lavender oil, for example, can help tremendously when it comes to soothing burns and reducing inflammation. The benefits and effects it the oil depends on which plants were used. But some of the most popular benefits are soothing skin irritation, helping managing pain, and helping to alleviate stress and anxiety. Even so, there are a few safety tips that you should be aware of when using essential oils.

Essential oils are often concentrated, and while they can be applied to the skin, it is often best to dilute it with a carrier oil. Sometimes applying pure essential oil directly to the skin can lead to skin irritation. Additionally, not all essential oil brands make oils of the same quality, so it pays to be selective and conduct research into the brands before you buy.

Never ingest essential oils.

Regardless of the type, brand, or what some people may tell you, essential oils are not safe to ingest. People trying to convince you that essential oils are safe will often say things like the essential oils are “natural” and therefore, “safe to consume;” However, with that logic, one could also say that it’s safe to eat poison ivy because that too, is natural. The problem with consuming essential oils is the rate of absorption. Not as much of the oil will be absorbed into the body through the skin as it could be when ingested. Consuming essential oil can lead to poisoning, even if only a small amount was consumed. It goes without saying that it’s also not safe to put essential oils into foods or beverages, either. There are many people and even some companies who make claims that using essential oils in this manner is fine, so be vigilant.

Don’t use expired essential oils

Essential oils can at times be a bit pricey; as such, it can be tempting to use it and keep it even if it spoils. Oxidation can change both the aroma, and in some cases, it can also lead to skin rashes, irritation, burns, and other negative side effects. Essential oils can degrade when they come into contact with UV light. Amber-shade glass bottles are often used to store essential oil because they reflect UV light, and therefore help to improve the shelf life of the oil. Plastic bottles can be degraded by essential oils so they are not a good storage option. When storing essential oils, it’s best to keep them in a cool place as heat can speed up the essential oxidation process. Storing your essential oils in the refrigerator can help prevent the oil from degrading due to oxidation. Certain essential oils will solidify when placed in the refrigerator, but they won’t be damaged. When you’re ready to use the oils, take them out of the refrigerator about 12 hours beforehand. Lastly, when storing oil, be sure the bottle is closed tight to limit the exposure to the air.

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