Erin and I have had a busy start to our summer. We have participated in a few craft shows as vendors. It has been great fun and has provided some interesting learning opportunities. I am making products to highlight the self care aspects of Aromatherapy. My gently scented flax and jasmine rice heating/cooling pads and felted wool diffuser necklaces are examples of how aromatherapy can be used for stress relief and support. Erin’s personal care products demonstrate how essential oils can be useful in skin care products and effective in targeted blends for specific health concerns.
It has taken some research and effort to create products that are safe and that will work the way we want them to. We didn’t start off with the goal to sell aromatherapy creations but with our successes we find the need to share. Two of the products that Erin has worked on perfecting are outdoor sprays that are effective in repelling ticks and mosquitoes and other flying insects. Her formulations have gone through some reiterations but she has settled on two recipes that work well for us. We are getting reports from our students and customers that they are getting good results from both. The formulations are designed to use essential oils in a way that is safe for dogs and children, to have safe dilution rates, to be properly solubized into the mixture and to be preserved for a reasonable shelf life. We did this for ourselves and our customers who will go on to use these products. They are trusting us to provide all natural products that are safe and effective.
We have been amazed at the number of other vendors who are selling similar sprays that are just essential oils and water. Aromatherapists know that essential oils and water don’t mix without the help of a dispersant or emulsifier. The mixture of essential oils float on top of the water and provide poor coverage as well as neat undiluted doses, which can contribute to skin irritations and sensitization. This is poor practice and displays a lack of knowledge about how essential oils work. The unpreserved mixture has a maximum shelf life of one to two weeks before it starts to grow bacteria.
People at our shows are sometimes reluctant to spend money on our sprays because they think the natural sprays don’t last very long. It has been fun teaching people that there are easy guidelines to follow when creating natural personal care products. Guidelines for safe dilution rates, proper dispersion, age appropriate usage, restrictions for use with animals and awareness that some oils are contraindicated for certain medical conditions make us aware that natural is not always easy and inherently safe.
I invite you to ask your questions about specific essential oil properties, safe recipes and formulations and the most effective applications. Feel free. I am here for you.
Be well, Kay