Topical Application of Essential Oils

Topical Application

Many oils are safe to apply directly to the skin.  When applying most essential oils on children, dilute the oils with a carrier oil.  For dilution, add 15-30 drops of essential oil to 1 oz of quality carrier oil.  Carrier oils can be coconut oil and V-6 Vegetable Oil Complex.

When starting an essential oil application, depending on the oil you use, you may want to test the skin for sensitivity first by applying the oil first to the bottoms of your feet. Start by applying 3-6 drops of a single oil or blend, spreading it over the bottom of each foot.

When applying essential oils to yourself, use 1-2 drops of oil on 2-3 locations 2 times a day.  Increase to 4 times a day if needed.  Apply the oil and allow it to absorb for 2-3 minutes before applying another oil or before getting dressed to avoid staining clothing.

When mixing essential oil blends or diluting essential oils in carriers, it is best to use containers made of glass or aluminum rather than plastic.  Plastic particles can leach into the oil and then into the skin once it is applied.

Ways to Apply Topically

Massage – Start by applying 2 drops of and oil and blend on the skin massaging it in.  If you are working on a large area such as the back, mix 1-3 drops of  the essential oil into 1 teaspoon of pure carrier oil.

Warm Compress – For a deeper penetration, use a warm compress after applying essential oils.  (Natural by Kerri Aromatherapy Bags) Cover the area that you have applied the oil and leave on for 15-30 minutes.  Remove immediately if there is any discomfort.

Cold Press – Appy the essential oils, then use cold water or ice packs (Natural by Kerri Aromatherapy Bags) when treating inflamed or swollen areas.  The aromatherapy bags make excellent ice packs as they will hold to the contours of the body and not leak.  Keep the cold pack on until the swelling goes down.

Layering – This technique consists of applying multiple oils at a time.  For example, rub Valor over a sore muscle, massage it into the tissue until the area is dry, then apply a second oil such as PanAway until the oil is absorbed and the skin dry.  Then layer on a third oil such as Peppermint to lock in the oils.


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