A few drops of essential oils can be added to bath water to help relaxation and improve the skin. The essential oil should be mixed with a little carrier oil before adding to the bath and then stirred well. This is a particularly enjoyable way to relax whilst benefiting from these wonderful oils.
The oils can be used as an inhalation by adding about 2-3 drops to a bowl of almost boiling water and inhaling for around 10 minutes to ease blocked sinuses, chest complaints and colds. (This method is NOT to be used by asthma or allergy sufferers). Facial steaming with essential oils is often used in beauty treatments for deep cleansing and moisturizing of the skin.
Gargles and Mouthwashes
These are an excellent way of dealing with throat infections, mouth ulcers and gum problems. Add two drops of the oil to a glass of water and use as a mouthwash.
These teas are an excellent way of taking herbs and plants internally to improve bodily functions. However they should be used in moderation as they do have medicinal properties. In some countries such as France, doctors give essential oils by mouth by this could have certain dangers as the oils are very potent and is NOT to be recommended unless administered by a medically qualified practitioner. Herbs can also be used in cooking.
These can be hot or cold and are prepared by adding 2-5 drops of the oil or oils to a bowl of water. A flannel is used to skim the top of the water and applied to the affected area for about 15 minutes. If hot and cold compresses are used alternately, hot should be applied first, followed by the cold compress. Compresses are ideal for treating swollen joints, backache and headache.
A clean plant spray is filled with water and a few drops of essential oil added. Shake well and spray in the room. Lavender is ideal for this purpose.
With this method a few drops of oil are added to a bowl of water which is placed over a small candle. Special oil burners are widely available and make attractive ornaments. The essential oil gradually evaporates into the room. Care should be taken to ensure that the water does not boil dry. This is an ideal way of scenting a room.
This is wonderful way to relax after a tiring day and is ideal for easing aching feet. Simply add a few drops of essential oil to a bowl of hot water and soak the feet. Peppermint oil is particularly good for this.
Skin and Hair Care
Essential oils can be used as skin moisturisers when added to a carrier oil such as Jojoba.
You can also add them to fragrance-free and lanolin-free creams or lotions to create your own skin care products.
Essential oils can also improve the condition of your hair as well treating scalp disorders. A few drops of essential oil added to a jug of warm water can be used as a final hair rinse. Chamomile is excellent for fair hair while Rosemary is recommended for darker hair.