Hang onto your knickers, she’s gonna be a long one!
For those of you that know me well, you know I’m a bit on the crunchy side. Hence the blog / this post.
I’m apologizing right now for the stock photos. I genuinely hate using them, but I’m using the “I haven’t had time to take a proper photo of the collection” excuse.
Disclaimer: I do not claim products are proven for the prevention or treatment of disease. I’m not a doctor, I’m merely conveying my personal opinions, experiences, and research.
A couple weeks ago, I thought, “Why not pimp essential oils in my spare time?” I know Multi-level Marketing isn’t really a great thing unless you’re working at it full time, but the wholesale prices are pretty decent.
The short version is that I’m not looking to make a career out of selling essential oils. If you want to buy them from me or want to buy the wholesale priced stuff and sell them yourself, I’m happy to talk more on the subject and point you in the right direction.
Backtrack to last winter: I was chatting with my cousin-in-law while I wasn’t feeling so hot, and she ended up rubbing a bunch of oils on my arms to show me the difference between a few brands, and Young Living stuck in my mind because of the sheer potency of the oil. And it smelled amazing.
Backtrack to my childhood: I loved making potions, or better known as “pretty much anything liquid I could find around the house to mix together that no one would want to apply to their skin because it would be too nasty, and you’d just throw it out” mixtures, and convincing friends to join in on potion-making with me.
I also loved essential oils, and still flipping love them. The downside being that they’re a little pricey to explore and experiment with, so they didn’t go into my potions, but were bought on special occasions at the drugstore with my allowance when I outgrew the potion-making phase. They were definitely the crappy kind.
Fast forward to Sara going crunchy (second half of highschool to now): I love using products that are natural. Another “duh”moment. That’s exactly what this whole blog is about! Your skin eats what you put on it. Therefore, skin eating plants = probably okay if the plant isn’t generally poisonous.
I purchased a starter kit from Young Living, which I’m quite happy with so far. It came with a diffuser (my husband hates it; apparently “life doesn’t need to be scented”), 11-5ml oils (7 singles and 4 blends).
To spare the annoying and redundant, I’ll just add a link to each oil in case you’re interested in learning about its use and properties. The Internet has a plethora of information on the subject of essential oils, or EOs, as they will often be referred to in this post, and on its many debates.
But for the fun stuff! And we’ll get back to the heavy stuff in a moment…
Of the single oils, I’m regularly using (aka, diffusing and rubbing on myself) and quite enjoying:
- Lavender. I’m just rubbing it all over me because I want to smell like a lavender bush all of the bleeping time
- Peppermint. Yum. Just yum.
- Copaiba. Pronounced Co-pie-ee-ba. My favourite so far even though myself and a few friends couldn’t smell it straight out of the bottle
- Northern Lights Black Spruce. Amazeballs with peppermint in a diffuser
- Lemon. People love cleaning with lemon, from what I’ve read. And probably handy if you’re quitting coffee.
- Grapefruit. Love me some citrus! It’s not from the kit
And of the blends:
- Thieves. A blend of cinnamon bark, clove, rosemary, lemon, and eucalyptus. It’s YL’s new “it” blend.
- PanAway. Wintergreen, clove, helichrysum (huh?), peppermint. I used this the day after I was feeling sore from a workout, and it was pretty magical.
So far, I’m liking Young Living’s EO singles. I’m not as big of a fan of the blends that came in the kit (RC, DiGize and Purification) or Frankincense. I’ve heard people rave about those four oils, so it might be for you, it might not. It really all boils down to personal preference!
Serious Discussion on How Essential Oils Should Be Used Safely
The Canadian Federation of Aromatherapists does not condone ingesting oils or using them undiluted, as it is a breech of their code of ethics. Dilute with a carrier oil, like coconut oil, if you’re planning to err on the side of caution.
Young Living is comfortable telling its wholesalers and consumers to use some oils undiluted and that they are safe to ingest. The US labels on the EOs are different from the Canadian ones; the FDA says it’s alright to eat them. Obviously, Young Living and the FDA work hand-in-hand, otherwise Young Living would likely not be able to sell their products in such large quantities as a reputable business.
While EOs are not technically a food, nor are they classified as drugs, they are classified as a food additive. Like vanilla extract. They are incredibly potent and do have the ability to irritate skin and cause or exacerbate allergic reactions. Conversely, there are claims that EOs can alleviate allergic reactions and aid digestion safely. There isn’t sufficient evidence to understand how it affects gut bacteria, and whether or not its effects can be mitigated with probiotics. What I’ve found with respect to Canadian regulations: Health Canada says it’s not for eating.
Personally, I’m very much on the fence about the ingesting of oils situation. I will never tell anyone that they are safe to eat, since I’m not completely educated on the subject and cannot make conclusive statements as to their safety. I know the FDA is not an infallible body with respect to food science and drugs, and neither is Health Canada, I’m sure. I also know seemingly benign health food additives, like ginko biloba, can send someone on a trip to the hospital. To suggest that incredibly potent and concentrated plant matter (EO) is completely benign is a little ignorant, in my humble opinion.
A girl’s California State Fair science project also concludes that citrus peel oils are great solvents for eating styrofoam. Makes you want to keep EOs (particularly citrus) out of your stomach, right?
In addition to these relatively informative sources, a wonderful blog on all things crunchy, Empowered Sustenance, has a post on why friends don’t let friends drink essential oils.
Whatever you decide you want to do with essential oils is none of my beeswax, but make sure you do your research.