Carrier Oils – The Secret Sauce
We love the benefits of essential oils. Everyone knows essential oils are too powerful to apply directly to the skin. And everyone knows what you do is dilute your essential oils in a carrier oil that “carries” the essential oil through the skin. The conventional wisdom is that any carrier oil will do—Carrier oils are not super-stars. BUT, here, we’re letting you in on a little secret—Carrier oils matter! Here’s why Amrita’s quality carrier oils are The Secret Sauce for your essential oil blends.
A Therapeutic Part of Your Remedy: Your carrier oil itself can help reduce inflammation, dryness, itching and accelerate healing of cuts, scrapes, burns, sunburn, injuries, bruising, etc. These oils can help reduce the formation of scar tissue and even help with existing scars. Rosehip seed oil is often used in facials for this reason. The following section “How to Choose” can help you make a choice. Oils can change the skin’s texture, tone, moisturization, and even its pigmentation.
Organic: No pesticides, no herbicides, and no chemical contamination. In 2015 researchers at the University of California in San Francisco found that 93% of Americans have the widely used herbicide glyphosate in their blood, with children showing the highest levels [Adams, Friesen, Olson, Gerona, 2015]. Pesticides and herbicides are typically oil-soluble. Organic oils should be at the top of your healthy-shopping priorities.
Cold-Pressed: Cold-pressed oils are not chemically altered and have no solvent residue. Today almost every oil on a store shelf is extracted by boiling or steaming. These are fast and efficient methods and reduce costs but alter the chemistry. And even worse, most are extracted using hexane or similar solvents to squeeze out that last drop. Solvent residues always remain in the oil. Healthy cold-pressed oils are extracted at room temperature using pressure. Pressing is the traditional method of extraction.
Allergies: 15 million Americans (5%) have food allergies and may react to almond, hazelnut, or apricot pit carrier oils. An additional 1% have a reaction to latex and should avoid avocado carrier oil. Jojoba closely resembles human sebum and rarely produces an allergic reaction. A jojoba reaction is bumps or a rash caused by either impurities or remnants from solvent processing. Organic jojoba like Amrita’s is not solvent extracted. The face may be less sensitive or more sensitive to allergic properties than the rest of the body—if there’s a question, try just a little as a test.
Nourishment: Your skin is the largest organ of your body, about two square yards total. Oils impact the health of your skin. Mineral oil and petroleum oils aren’t ordinarily used as carrier oils but still rate a mention here. They don’t produce an allergic response, and are very cheap, so they are widely used in cosmetics. But even purified mineral paraffin oils usually contain 30% heterocyclic aromatic compounds and pose a health risk. Mineral oils clog pores and give no nourishment to skin—they prevent moisture loss and that’s it. Good quality carrier oils, by contrast, are composed of fatty acids which are absorbed into and nourish the skin and hair. Carrier oils have a surprising variety of valuable vitamins that help the skin. And pay special attention to sensitive skin, children’s skin or mature skin. Give them the very best.
Absorption: Avocado oil is thick and is absorbed slowly. Jojoba absorbs quickly—perfect for topical application for absorption of essential oils. Dry skin or damaged skin will absorb more oil.
Conveniently-sized amber glass bottle: Isn’t this odd to include? But, if you reflect I’d bet you can recall making a blend and leaving it in a dish for your next use. Everybody does it. But, the essential oils will be nearly all gone by the next day. Almost worthless! A two-ounce amber bottle is just right for a remedy you’ll use for a few days. Glass beats plastic, which can be dissolved by essential oils. And amber glass prevents sunlight from damaging the essential oils.
Part of You: The carrier oil you choose is going to be absorbed into your skin. It will be part of you. It will only gradually diminish away. So the character and quality of oil should appeal to you.