Essential oils can be kinda overwhelming at first, huh?
Not only are there a million-and-one different oils to choose from, but then comes the question of accessories… Oh, the accessories.
Two of the top questions I get are, “What oils should I start with?” and “What else do I need to go along with them?”
Today I’m going to introduce you to my most-used oils, along with the tools that you’ll want to have as you dive into the world of essential oils.
The Oils You Just Gotta Have:
It’s easy to go cross-eyed with all the different varieties of essential oils out there. I remember the feeling of wanting all of them when I started, but knowing my budget would definitely not allow that… So then I was left with the process of picking out the ones I wanted… Lemon, ok sure, that sounds familiar. But what the heck was Vetiver, and did I need that one right away?
My Four Most-Reached-For Oils
- Lemon – Lemon is the queen of homemade cleaning products. It’s an incredible deodorizer, and can cut grease (and crayon marks!) like no other. Add it to your DIY Protective blends, carpet cleaning projects, or homemade laundry detergent.
- Lavender – When in doubt, use Lavender… It is also well-loved for its ability to support healthy skin, ease stressful situations, and promote relaxation. It’s one of the main ingredients in my Homemade After-Sun Spray.
- Peppermint – Peppermint is a tasty addition to homemade milkshakes and hot cocoa, but it’s capable of a whole lot more than that. Whenever I have a spot of tension in my body, Peppermint is the first thing I reach for. It’s also my favorite for supporting digestive health.
- Melaleuca – Melaleuca (aka Tea Tree Oil) is a really “trendy” oil right now, but incredibly useful. Melaleuca is renowned for its cleansing effect on the skin, promotes healthy immune function, and protects against environmental and seasonal threats.
A couple of others that are handy:
- Frankincense – Frankincense, of Biblical fame, is a powerful oil. You really can’t go wrong reaching for this one, no matter what is ailing you. It’s wonderful for skin and emotional support as well.
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Carrier oils are a must-have if you plan to use essential oils for anything other than homemade cleaning products. A carrier oil is simply a liquid vegetable oil of some sort that is used to dilute the very concentrated essential oils.
You can usually find these at your local health food store, or Amazon carries them.
*Fractionated coconut oil is simply coconut oil that has had the long chain fatty acids removed from it. The benefit of FCO is that it stays liquid at room temp, and is a lot handier to use for essential oil applications than regular coconut oil, which is usually solid at room temp.
Use a carrier oil if you are applying a “hot” essential oil like Oregano or Peppermint, as well as well you are applying essential oils to a child or someone with sensitive skin.
A Good Reference Book
If you are looking for a book that is not brand-specific, try The Complete Book Essential Oils and Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood. And a couple of handy animal reference books are Essential Oils for Horses by Carole Faith and Holistic Aromatherapy for Animals by Kristen Leigh Bell.
Yes, it’s possible to enjoy essential oils without a diffuser, but I wouldn’t recommend it. I have 3 diffusers in my home and I adore them! I use them constantly and can’t imagine my essential oil life without them. This post has 10 of my fav diffuser blends.
Once you get your EOs, you’ll want to start playing around with blends and mixes of your own. It’s always handy to have a few extra glass bottles hanging around. I save all of my empties and reuse them for my DIY blends (use a bit of Lemon oil to remove the label). You can also grab glass spray bottles and extra small bottles at AromaTools. Choosing dark colored bottles (like the amber or cobalt blue ones) is advised to help shield the oils inside from excess light. (I’m not affiliated with AromaTools- I just order from them a lot.)
- Keep 1/4 dram sized sample bottles on hand if you plan to share oils with friends and family.
- 5-15 mL bottles are useful when you are mixing up your own blends.
- I like the 4 oz glass spritzer bottles for things like Sunburn Spray or room spritzers.
- Roller bottles make the topical application of oils super easy. I like to place a few drops of Lavender in a roller bottle, and then fill it up the rest of the way with carrier oil. Prairie Boy and Prairie Girl love me to swipe it on their feet before bedtime.
- If you end up with more empty bottles than you need, here are 15 ideas for using empty essential oil bottles.
The biggest complaint I hear from my essential oil team members? Sometimes it’s hard to measure out drops from the tiny glass bottles without spilling. This is where glass droppers come in handy. Sometimes you can find droppers that screw right onto the bottle, which makes mixing and blending even easier.
You won’t be sorry if you start keeping a essential oil notebook right off the bat. Use it to write down notes about your favorite blends, ideas you might find in your internet travels, and tips for which oils work best for your family members. You might think you’ll remember what you mixed up last week for your great-aunt Martha, but trust me, you’ll forget.
Interested in learning why I’ve stuck with the same brand of oils for over three years? GO HERE.