Carrier oil benefits

Carrier oil benefits

Carrier oils are oils made from plants.  Carrier oils are used to dilute essential oils and literally “carry” them to your skin. It is important to use them because essential oils are very potent and can irritate the skin if not diluted and applied correctly.  Some carrier oils are unscented or lightly scented and don’t interfere with an essential oil’s therapeutic properties. They may be used alone or with other oils to nourish your skin.  There are many different carrier oils around.  Many are great to use with essential oils but some have quite a distinct odour that, when added can change the aroma of the essential oil.  Examples of some carrier oils can be found below

Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is an edible oil made from the meat of mature coconuts. It’s available in refined or unrefined varieties.  Unrefined coconut oil comes from fresh coconut meat. It’s not processed with chemicals and retains its coconut aroma and flavour.
Refined coconut oil comes from dried coconut meat. It’s bleached and deodorised to remove contaminants, as well as the distinct coconut aroma and flavour. Refined coconut is not all-natural and is not recommended for use as a carrier oil.  Coconut oil contains fatty acids and polyphenols, which make it a great carrier oil for massage oils and skin care preparations.

Jojoba Oil
Jojoba oil comes from the seeds of the jojoba plant. It has a delicate, nutty aroma. Technically, jojoba isn’t an oil, but a wax with powerful moisturising properties. It’s thought to closely mimic sebum, the skin’s natural oil.  Using jojoba oil may help reduce the skin’s oil production in acne prone people by making the skin think it’s produced enough oil.  Jojoba oil absorbs easily in the skin and doesn’t clog pores. This makes it a good carrier oil option for massage oils, facial moisturisers, and bath oils.

Apricot Kernel Oil
Apricot kernel oil is made from apricot seeds, also known as kernels. It’s an emollient oil high in fatty acids and vitamin E. It absorbs easily into the skin and has a slightly sweet, nutty scent. You can buy edible apricot kernel oil, or apricot kernel oil for cosmetic use only.  Apricot kernel oil is thought to help soften and calm irritated, itchy skin. Use it as a carrier oil to make massage oils, bath oil, and hair care preparations.

Sweet Almond Oil
Sweet almond oil has a strong, nutty aroma. It’s an edible oil made from the kernels of sweet almonds. The oil is lightweight and absorbs easily, and is a great moisturizer for dry skin. It is also used in general aromatherapy, but it’s strong scent may mask an essential oil’s aroma.  Sweet almond oil is one of the most popular carrier oils for skin care. It’s great in massage oils, bath oils, and soaps.

Olive Oil
Olive oil comes from pressed olives. It’s best known as a healthy, edible oil with a fruity aroma, but it’s also used in aromatherapy as a carrier oil.
Extra-virgin olive oil is the preferred variety for aromatherapy and skin care preparations. Olive oil’s scent may interfere with the scent of some essential oils.
Olive oil is packed with fatty acids and plant sterols, which make it great cleansing and moisturizing dry skin. Use olive oil as a carrier oil for massage, facial cleansers, hair care, and homemade soaps.

Argan oil
Argan oil is made from kernels found inside the fruit of Argan trees, which are native to Morocco. The oil is edible and is traditionally used to nourish the body inside and out. It has a nutty aroma and is rich in vitamins A and E, and monounsaturated fatty acids.  Argan oil can help treat dry skin and hair, wrinkles, and skin inflammation. This makes it a terrific carrier oil for general skin care and massage oils.

Rosehip oil
Rosehip oil is pressed from rosehips.  Rosehips are the seeds of the Rosa rubigniosa bush or the Rosa moschata bush. The flowers of both bushes look different from traditional roses. When these flowers die and drop their petals, the rosehip is left behind.   Rosehip oil does not actually smell like a rose. It has a nutty, earthy scent.  Rosehip oil is high in vitamins A and C. Vitamin A is a natural retinoid that helps fight ageing, and both vitamins can help reverse the effects of the sun on your skin. Use it as a carrier oil for dry skin remedies, massage oils, and moisturisers.

Grape Seed Oil
Grape seed oil comes from grape seeds. It’s a by product of the winemaking process. It’s rich in vitamin E, a nutrient thought to heal the skin and reduce wrinkles.  Grape seed oil is lightweight, easily absorbed by the skin, and has a neutral scent. It’s a good carrier oil to use with essential oils to make body oils and massage oils.

Avocado oil
Avocado oil is a heavy, thick, edible oil made from avocado fruit. It has a nutty aroma.  Avocado oil is high in oleic acid, a monounsaturated fatty acid thought to help dry, damaged skin.  Avocado oil can be a good carrier oil for dry skin remedies and body creams — unless you’re dealing with acne. Avocado oil may increase sebum production, so if your skin is acne-prone, check with your dermatologist before use.

Sunflower oil
Sunflower oil is an edible oil extracted from sunflower seeds. It has a neutral odor.  The oil is said to act as a skin barrier against toxins and germs that cause infection, making it a great choice for irritated skin.  Sunflower oil is thought to help soften skin, moisturise skin, and soothe irritation, so add this carrier oil to your massage oils or use for general skin care.

Mixing carrier oils with essential oils
Whenever possible, purchase organic, cold-pressed carrier oils from a manufacturer you trust. Although most carrier oils don’t cause an allergic reaction, you should always do a patch test prior to using.  If you are allergic to tree nuts, you shouldn’t use oils derived from tree nuts. This includes sweet almond oil, argan oil, and apricot kernel oil.

In conclusion
Carrier oils make it possible to use essential oils safely. They also help nourish and moisturise your skin. Not all oils make good carrier oils, though. You should avoid using things like butter, petroleum jelly, and mineral oil.  Whatever oil you choose, avoid using it on your lips, eyes, or other sensitive areas after it’s been mixed with an essential oil. However, you can safely apply carrier oil alone to these areas.

There are many carrier oils available. Most are suitable to use with any essential oil, but you should consider a few things before choosing one. 
Some things to think about:
Odour – Some carrier oils have a distinct odour.  It may alter the aroma when added to an essential oil.
Absorption – skin absorbs different carrier oils better than others.
Skin type – depending on your skin type some essential oils can irritate skin or worsen a condition such as acne.
Shelf life – some carrier oils can be stored longer than others.

Always store carrier oils in a cool, dark place, preferably in the refrigerator. You should also keep them in a dark glass bottle.