We here at Tangerines & Thyme have one huge belief when it comes to essential oils and using them safely; TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS. There is so much information out there in regards to oils and how to use them, but if someone someplace recommends using oils in a way in which you don’t feel comfortable, DON’T. You know yourself and/or your little ones the best so follow your gut. With that in mind, here are some general safety guidelines when it comes to using essential oils!
Essential oils can be used in a variety of ways. The most common way is through inhalation or aromatically. This is when you are smelling them straight from the bottle or sending particles into the air via your diffuser. We love recommending diffusion as a way to get acquainted with your oils when you first get your Premium Starter Kit (PSK) or when you begin your oily journey. All it takes is 2-3 drops of essential oil in the well of your diffuser and you’re set! To utilize an oil aromatically, you can also put a drop in your hands, rub them together, and then cup your hands to your face, breathing in all the goodness your oils have to offer. With this hand cupping method, beware that some oils are considered “hot” and may need a little carrier oil (not familiar with those terms? We discuss them more below). One thing to remember is that too much of a good thing….is sometimes too much. These oils are highly potent and too many drops in your diffuser can cause issues. If you notice a change in your breathing or heart rate, stop the diffuser immediately and dump out the water. This reaction is extremely rare when you use your oils in moderation, but everyone is different!
The second way you can use your oils is topically. We mentioned one topical application above-rubbing them on to your hands (and then inhaling), but you can also place the oils on specific parts of your body. We absolutely recommend that, at least in the beginning of your oil journey, you dilute your essential oil with a carrier oil. A carrier oil is a fruit based oil (think coconut, olive, sunflower, almond, V6, etc.) that dilutes the essential oil down. Coconut is a favorite of ours and its readily available in both a solid form (the kind you can buy in the grocery store) and also in a fractionated form (which stays liquid). Dilution is especially important with hot oils and when using oils with children. For instance, let’s say you wake up with a rumble in your chest. Wanting to nip that rumble in the bud, you might take RC (one of the blends found in your PSK) and mix it with some coconut oil, then smear it your skin around your lungs. This is considered topical application. The bottoms of your feet are also great places to place oils topically, as your feet are home to your Vita Flex points. More on your amazing Vita Flex points can be found here.
More than once now, we’ve mentioned “hot” oils. These oils are the ones that may tingle when applied directly to the skin. Some people using hot oils directly on their skin may feel nothing, while others may feel a more intense sensation; it all depends on your skin. If you would like to use a hot oil topically, ALWAYS dilute it with a carrier oil until you feel comfortable doing so otherwise. Young Living considers the following to be “hot” oils:
- Exodus II
If you ever use an oil and it causes discomfort, a rash, or anything else along those lines, stop using the oil immediately! If it is currently on your skin and causing discomfort, apply more carrier oil and then blot with a cotton towel. DO NOT USE WATER. Water will only make it worse, as oils and water do not mix and the water will just spread it over a wider area. Whereas you never want to use oils in your ear canals, your eyes, your genitals or your mucous membranes, sometimes accidents happen. Per our fabulous upline Royal Crown Diamond leader Debra Reyburn, grab a piece of cotton fabric (dish towel or whatnot) and dip it in a carrier oil. Then take that edge with the oil and place it where the oil is causing the discomfort. Maybe you were trying to treat some puffiness around your eyes and got a little oil in there in the process. Simply hold the tip of the fabric with the oil up to the corner of your eye and let it sit for a moment. The oil in your eye will be drawn to the carrier oil on the towel and viola! No more oil in your eye.
Some oils to also mention are oils that make your skin photosensitive, meaning that sunlight or UV exposure may cause your skin to burn, break out in a rash or cause pigmentation issues. As Young Living citrus oils are cold pressed, wait at least 12 hours after applying these oils before going out into the sun to avoid these issues. The photosensitive oils are:
- Any blend containing these oils
The third way to use your essential oils is by ingesting them. Ingesting is a hot topic and is widely debated, so here again, trust your instincts. You do not have to ingest oils and can still get amazing results by using them topically or aromatically. If you do decide to ingest them, there are a variety of ways. You may opt to put some in a capsule with a carrier oil and swallow them. You may opt to put a drop under your tongue, or maybe in your shot of NingXia Red or in your water. That is most definitely up to you. Just know that oils are extremely concentrated; it takes 75 lemons to make one 15 ml bottle of Young Living essential oil! That’s a lot of lemon, therefore a drop, or even a toothpick swirled in a drop and then swirled in your water is more than enough to reap the benefits. As with anything else, consulting your Health Professional before ingesting essential oils is the wisest choice, especially if you are currently taking medication. There have been reports of essential oils and medications contraindicating, which can lead to larger problems.
**As a side note, for those choosing to ingest, we only recommend ingesting Young Living essential oils. Due to their Seed to Seal guarantee, we know that there are no toxic ingredients in these essential oils and that the only fillers will be carrier oils in some of the blends and those ingredients will always be noted on the bottle. We do not endorse any other brand of oil for this reason**
For those pregnant or nursing mamas out there, be careful with the oils you choose to use while pregnant and also while nursing. There are a few oils that most professionals recommend avoiding (or limiting) during pregnancy and are as follows:
- Clary Sage
- Idaho Tansy
It is also suggested that pregnant moms avoid basil, oregano, tarragon and rosemary during their first trimester.
We offer an amazing online class for those people who have signed up to be a part of the Tangerines & Thyme team! Check the classes page to see when we have our next one scheduled for more information.
And lastly…oils and babies/children. This is probably the most important area where we reinforce following your instincts. You know your child better than anyone else. If you don’t feel comfortable using oils on them, that is perfectly acceptable! Babies especially have very delicate skin and respiratory systems. It is suggested that babies (one day old to two years old) avoid the following oils:
When using oils on babies, ALWAYS DILUTE WITH A CARRIER OIL. Start off with a drop in a tablespoon of carrier oil. If diffusing, start out diffusing oils in 15 minute increments to see how your baby responds. Whenever using a new oil topically (the bottom of their feet is best), do not leave your child unattended until you see how they react.
For those that are comfortable, here is a list of essential oils generally recognized as being safe for children (two years to five years old) to use:
- Roman Chamomile
- Rose Otto
- Royal Hawaiian Sandalwood
- Tea Tree
- Ylang Ylang
With children, dilution is KEY. Using a ratio of 2-3 drops of oil per tablespoon of carrier oil is a good place to start. Once you have had the chance to see how your child reacts, you can adjust that ratio as needed.
Hopefully this helped! If you have any questions, please email us at info (at ) tangerinesandthyme (dot) com.