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suziesheree
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PostSubject: Carrier Oils   Wed Jul 08, 2009 3:57 pm

Carrier oils also referred to as base oils or vegetable oils are used to dilute essential oils before applying to the skin. Different carrier oils offer different properties and the choice of carrier oil can depend on the therapeutic benefit being sought.

Examples of carrier oils are sweet almond, apricot kernel, grapeseed, avocado, peanut, olive, pecan, macadamia nut, sesame, evening primrose, walnut and wheat germ. Mineral oil is not used in aromatherapy because mineral oil is not a natural product. It is also said that mineral oil can prevent essential oil absorption into the skin.

Essential oils do not go rancid. Carrier oils, however, can go rancid. Carrier oils that you purchase should be natural and unadulterated. Exceptions include buying carrier oils that have natural vitamin E added. Vitamin E acts as a natural preservative.



Almond

Aroma: Light, slightly sweet and nutty.
Texture: Slightly oily, leaves a slight oily feeling on the skin. Absorbs semi-quickly.
Color: Virtually clear with a tinge of yellow.
Notes: Sweet Almond oil is considered to be a good all-purpose carrier oil to keep on hand and is moderately priced.


Apricot Kernel
Aroma: Faint
Texture: Somewhat oily, absorbs semi-quickly.
Color: Virtually clear with a tinge of yellow.
Notes: The semi-oily texture makes this oil helpful in massage blends.


Avocado

Aroma: Medium. Somewhat sweet, fatty and nutty in aroma.
Texture: Thick, leaves a fatty, almost waxy feel to the skin.
Color: Deep olive green.
Notes: If not carefully used or used in a small dilution with another carrier, it may overpower a blend.


Cocoa Butter

Aroma: Unrefined cocoa butter is rich and very sweet . It has a chocolaty, "cocoa" aroma. The cocoa aroma is less noticeable in refined cocoa butter.
Texture: Solid and hard to work with at room temperate. Breaks into pieces.
Color: Yellowish tan.
Notes: Cocoa butter needs to be blended with other materials/oils to be workable. Suitable for use in lotions and creams.


Evening Primrose

Aroma: Light and sweet
Texture: Thin, leaves only a trace of oiliness on the skin.
Color: Medium yellow.
Notes: Evening Primrose is also said to be excellent in treating many skin conditions. It is expensive and is usually blended in a small (often 10%) dilution with other carrier oils. It goes rancid quickly.


Grapeseed

Aroma: Light, slightly sweet with a hint of a nutty aroma.
Texture: Thin but leaves a glossy film on the skin.
Color: Virtually clear, has an almost unnoticeable tinge of yellow/green.
Notes: Unlike most other carrier oils, grapeseed oil is solvent extracted and may have trace amounts of chemical solvent remaining.


Hazelnut

Aroma: Light, nutty, somewhat sweet.
Texture: Thin and only leaves a slightly oily film on the skin.
Color: Light yellow.
Notes: It is said to be a good choice for those with oilier skin.


Jojoba

Aroma: Light to medium in aroma, not as sweet as the nut oils.
Texture: Light and silky. Absorbs well.
Color: Yellow.
Notes: Jojoba "oil" is actually a wax. It is a somewhat pricier oil and is frequently blended in a small dilution (10%) with other oils. It has a very long shelf-life.


Macadamia Nut

Aroma: More fragrant than sweet almond and some of the other nut oils
Texture: Thick and leaves an oily film on the skin.
Color: Clear with a tinge of yellow.
Notes: If not carefully used or used in a small dilution with another carrier, it may overpower a blend.


Olive

Aroma: Typical aroma of olive oil used in cooking.
Texture: Heavy and rather oily.
Color: Light to medium green.
Notes: If not carefully used or used in a small dilution with another carrier, it may overpower a blend.


Peanut

Aroma: Like Pecan, it is extremely light in aroma with a slight fatty, nutty quality.
Texture: Thick and leaves a very oily film on the skin.
Color: Virtually clear.
Notes: Peanut oil should not be used by anyone that has an allergy to peanuts. Because of it's oiliness, it is said to be a good choice for inclusion in massage blends. It has been said that it is a good oil to use for those with arthritis.


Pecan

Aroma: Extremely light with a hint of a fatty, nutty aroma.
Texture: Medium thickness, leaves a slight oily film on the skin.
Color: Virtually clear.
Notes: It is said that it goes rancid somewhat quickly.


Rose Hip

Aroma: Mild and perhaps earthy aroma.
Texture: Light and leaves only a hint of oil on the skin.
Color: Virtually clear.
Notes: It is said to be excellent in treating many skin conditions. It is expensive and is usually blended in a small (often 10%) dilution with other carrier oils. It goes rancid rather quickly.


Sesame

Aroma: Medium with a distinctive sweet, nutty sesame scent.
Texture: Mildly thick, leaves an oily film on the skin.
Color: Light yellow.
Notes: Sesame oil may overpower a blend if not diluted with another carrier oil.


Shea Butter

Aroma: Nutty, fatty.
Texture: Solid but permeable at room temperature. Leaves an oily/waxy feeling on the skin.
Color: Off-white/cream.
Notes: Suitable for use in lotions and creams.


Sunflower

Aroma: Faint and sweet.
Texture: Thin and does not leave an oily residue.
Color: Virtually clear with a tinge of yellow.
Notes: When choosing sunflower oil, strive to get unrefined oil.

_________________
Remember - - - 'STRESSED' spelt backwards! is 'DESSERTS'
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