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BellaOnline's Herbs Editor

What are Essential Oils

Essential oils are hydrophobic liquids extracted from plants usually through distillation or cold pressing. These oils are derived from various parts of the plant such as bark, leaves, flowers, berries, seeds, peels or roots.

Alternative medicine and aromatherapy have become quite popular and essential oils play a huge part in these practices. Care must be taken when utilizing these compounds because they are incredibly potent and often need carrier oils to dilute them. If applied directly to the skin these oils can cause allergic reactions and irritation.

Some facts to consider before trying aromatherapy or creating your own soaps or lotions are:

Another product used in aromatherapy and cosmetics is fragrance or aroma oils. These are created synthetically or are diluted essential oils (cut with carrier oils). Fragrance oils are not considered to be as potent as essential oils. Whether using this product or pure essential oils always be aware of the risks and use with care.

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