Monday, December 8, 2008

Aromatherapy Candle

Candles provide a glowing history as an object of exoticness and reverence; its use is as old as the human history itself. Many great civilizations and modern societies have held candles as an instrument of radiance; its radiance properties surpass any other similar objects. Candles have long been used as a 'mood-setting' addition to a room or occasion and now more innovative aromatherapy candles enhance that goal.

Aromatherapy practice uses natural essential oils that are absorbed through massage, ingestion or olfaction (also called sensory). Aromatic oils are also use to make candles, which candles have a physiological or therapeutic effect on mood through their fragrance.
How ever, scented candles should not be confused with aromatherapy candles. Scented candles simply contain a fragrance, most probably artificial, whereas aromatherapy candles contain natural essential oils.

Probably, one of the most well-known aromatherapy oils for alleviating stress and anxiety is lavender. A bowl of floating lavender aromatherapy candles to accompany your bath will help you relax after a long day. A small candle on your dining table will sway your desolate mood in to feeling of satisfaction.

For every mood and moment, there is an aromatherapy candle. Some of these top-rated essential oils might be found in aromatherapy candles:

Sage : This oil helps with insomnia and relaxation;
Chamomile : Exciting oil used for relaxing, helps with sleeplessness and anxiety;
Rosemary : An out of the world oil, which is stimulating and uplifting and good for mental stimulation;
Grapefruit : Freshly uplifting and refreshing
Eucalyptus : A strong oil which helps with respiratory problems and boosts the immune system;
Ylang Ylang : Soothing oil as a good antidepressant that helps you relax and sleep;
Geranium : Its sober effects help with relaxation while also being uplifting; helps balance hormones in women;
Peppermint : Sweet aroma helps with digestive disorders, headaches and muscle aches;
Lemon : Invigorating oil which uplifts and relaxes you senses;

As with any health product, you should understand what you are using when burning aromatherapy candles. You must know which type of oil is used in your candles. Certain essential oils can be harmful; it is always advised to be careful. Any type of candle can be formulated to serve as an aromatherapy candle, whether it's a floating, pillar, gel, votive or even jar candle.
Even though the doubts around the effectiveness aromatherapy are still present, all of us do know that candles and aromas are effective for evoking mood and emotions. You will notice candles labeled as "aromatherapy" candles range greatly in price; the price ranging from a low to high cost depending on the quality and availability of oil. Several factors effect the price such as types and qualities of wax, additives or purity, as well as other factors related to manufacturing. How ever, one main ingredient which can make or break the success of a candle as well as the price is its fragrance.

You can make your own aromatherapy candles too at your home! The best waxes for aromatherapy candles are of course a bit more expensive. Many natural waxes such as soy, palm and beeswax burn cleaner and do not emanate soot and are not petroleum or polymer based such as paraffin or gel waxes. More natural cotton or zinc core wick should be used instead of leaded wick because of health hazard issues.

Instead of adding dye to color the candle, include natural substances like herbs and flower petals. Always use pure essential oils for fragrance. This is definitely expensive, but worth it plus you can mix and match your own blends. Palm wax or palm/beeswax blend candles are always better, because they burn so long and clean and they blend quite easily with your oils. Essential oils should be added after the wax has melted and started cooling to preserve the integrity of the fragrance as they easily breakdown and evaporate.

Decorating your candle can be as easy as tying a ribbon around it to adding pressed flowers to it. Make several small motiffs or round candles and add to a basket for a great gift idea. Candles attach emotional importance to any occasion and moments; a great aromatherapy candle has that great ability to enhance the mood and ambience of any environment.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Aromatherapy Blends

Blending aromatherapy oils in to a well balanced mix is a workmanship that is a combination of an art as well as aesthetic ness. Aromatherapy blends that complement workout routines in our daily lives are among the fastest growing uses of aromatherapy today.

An essential oil blend is created for aesthetic and/or therapeutic benefits. No special skill is required to produce a successful blend but a spirit of creativity and a thorough knowledge of oils will help, along with a clear understanding of the intended use of the blend. A sensible aromatherapy blend employs all-natural, pure essential oils and delivers a clear benefit. The oils combined in it should be synergistic and harmonious enough to support and enhance oil's effect.
Before starting your blending work, it's very important to understand essential oils in general, as well as the specific parameters and aroma profiles of the oils you want to work with.
Essential oils are essentially very volatile. When you uncap a bottle of essential oil and expose it to the air, its aroma profile immediately begins to spread, develop and change. It undergoes certain defined morphological changes during its life span.

The three main stages of these changes are known as the top note stage, middle stage, and dry out stage. These stages of volatility coincide with three characteristics of the aroma profile known as top notes, middle notes and base notes. The top note stage appears first and corresponds with the most volatile, productive and unstable aroma compounds of the oil.
The aromas of these compounds are very subtle, smooth and fleeting, sometimes lasting just for a few seconds before dissipating. As the top notes evaporate very gradually, the oil enters its middle stage, in which the aroma body is most developed and balanced. A portion of the top notes remain, the middle notes are most apparent and sensible while the base notes are beginning to develop slowly.

As the middle stage progresses slowly, the base notes become visible and more noticeable, because they consist of compounds that are slow to volatilization. When the base notes finally evaporate, a faint but light dry out note lingers. The aroma profile of the dry out stage is thin, sometimes pungent, and suggests the presence of the oil. The dry out component can be thought of as the matrix or the soul of the oil.

Based on their individual aroma profiles, oils can be categorized into top notes, middle notes and bottom notes. A very delicate, highly volatile oil like bergamot is considered top note oil. Well balanced oil like clary sage would be known as middle note oil. Deep, rich, very tenacious oil like patchouli is considered base note oil.

When creating a blend, attempt for balance between top, middle and base note oils. Well balanced oil has a complex aroma profile and maintains the aromatherapy benefit throughout the various stages, although the characteristics of the scent may change. It is more stable and its usage spells a clear motive and defined benefit.

Before blending, analyze the various aroma profiles of the oils by dispensing a drop of oil on blotter paper or unscented tissue. Concentrate, inhale and note your impressions. Write notes and build notes for future reference. Trust your impressions and experience of the oils. Try to be connoisseur of smell. What do the different aromas remind you of? How do they under go change and develop throughout the various stages? How does the oil's fragrance make you feel?
As you develop a definite picture of the oils, visualize how they'll work with each other in a blend. Just decide about the part of the oil to be used, which effects are to be enhanced and which harsh characters needs to be toned down.

As a basic blend, just try to imagine a “DAY OUT BLEND” that helps you relax and unwind after stressful day. Your blend should be soothing and relaxing to your nerves, but also able to drive away the troubles of the day and give that much needed boost to carry you through the at home.
Two of the excellent relaxing oils are chamomile and lavender. Uplifting oils include bergamot and lemon. A careful blend of these oils would produce a light, sweet aroma with complex top and middle notes. The bergamot, lemon and chamomile oil components would lend this blend a fruity sweetness. The lavender would make the sweetness a wee bit more floral-botanical.
If you need the blend to be a little less sweet and more stimulating, a little amount of herbaceous, yet penetrating rosemary could be dispensed. The relaxing, spicy-woody oil of rosewood will serve as an effective base to this blend. If you observe, all essential effects of these oils are purely complimentary and in no way conflicting!

Try and learn which essential oils would match the benefit and aroma you're after. Then begin an experiment with various quantities and combinations, until you create the blend you want. Always try to keep notes on what you're doing, so upon a perfect blend you can repeat and make it more perfect.

A workout blend would inspire a perfectly positive attitude about improving health and physical appearance. A perfect blend is invigorating, inspiring and uplifting and such properties of essential oils can help you boost confidence and commitment all through the day. Some oils are activating, others soothe and calm, and still others fight workout odors. Some work like catalyst, while others are purely energizing.

Some of the invigorating and inspiring oils are: Basil, cypress, eucalyptus, fir needle, ginger, grapefruit, juniper berry, lavender, lemon, lemongrass, lime, orange, peppermint, petit grain, rosemary and thyme.

Examples of soothing and relaxing oils are: Cedar wood, chamomile, frankincense, jasmine, lavender, neroli, patchouli, rose, rosewood, sandalwood and ylang ylang.

Anti-odor and Refreshing oils are: All citrus oils, including bergamot, grapefruit, Limon, lime, orange, and tangerine. Other anti-odor oils are coriander, fir needle, juniper berry and lavender.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Aromatherapy Benefits

Aromatherapy offers its users some unique benefits and introducing aromatic oils into your daily life is quite easy, flexible, and therapeutically beneficial. Numerous essential oils have been use since time immemorial, for various purpose; the uses being quite diverse.

To help you know, below are listed a few ways in which you can get started as a beginner. However, these methods should be understood as guidelines only, and you will need to understand the precise purpose and pay special attention to all safety pre cautions that are attached to the oil chosen for use. It is also important to remember that essential oils are highly flammable. Never allow the vials and bottles of these oils to fall in the hands of your children.

Some of the most common uses of Aromatic oils and other substances are:
As an easy inhalation medication - These oils are used as relaxant to remove the nasal blockage caused due to common cold and allergy. Place 3-4 drops of essential oil on a clean tissue. Place the tissue near your nose and inhale. If you are a first timer, use only one drop to ensure that you do not have a sensitivity or reaction to the oil. Some people are allergic to aromatic oils.
As steam inhalation drops – Common cold and flu can be cured by this method. Initially boil 2 cups of water. Pour the water into a bowl and add 3-7 drops of your oil to the water. Use fewer drops if you are using oil that may cause irritation to your mucous membranes (i.e. cinnamon, eucalyptus, rosemary, pine, thyme, cajuput, etc.).

Place your nose about 12" away from the bowl and inhale deeply. Never inhale the steam constantly and if you notice any adverse reaction, stop immediately. Use of energizing or relaxing oils can also make this method useful any time of day or night.

As room freshener – You can sue aromatic oils to freshen up rooms; a few drops in to a diffuser will help spread the magnificent aroma of these oils. You can sue any of the exotic aromatic oils like Jasmine, Lavender or Rose oil.

As a general household freshener - Add a few drops of your favorite oil to your trash can, laundry wash, drain, vacuum bag filter, or on a tissue for placement in your drawers.
As a bug repellent - Tired of those bugs and insects? Then try one of those great oils. Many essential oils including citronella, lavender, and peppermint act as a natural repellent against insects and bugs. Sprinkle a few drops of essential oil onto tissues or cotton balls and place near your doorways and windows to help repel insects. Be cautious when using these oils, as some oils may not be suitable for use around pets. Be careful not to apply the essential oil directly onto fragile surfaces.

For massage purposes – Aromatic oils are known all over the world for their massaging properties. The art of massaging is never complete with your favorite oil. Add up to 20 drops of essential oil to 1 ounce carrier oil such as sweet almond oil and massage onto yourself or partner. Keep away from eyes and genital areas. Do not apply essential oils to the skin without first diluting them. Read all safety instructions.

For bathing - Some oils make an excellent bathing and relaxing drops. Add 5-7 drops essential oil to 1 ounce carrier oil. Add this blend to your running bath water and mix well before getting into the tub. Be sure to read the safety data for the essential oils you choose to use. Feel the exotic freshness and amazing scent emanating all around you!

Other Uses- Essential oils can be used in making homemade lotions, facial toners, shampoos, perfumes, soaps, shower gels, and other natural products. Additionally, essential oils are often blended for their therapeutic synergistic abilities.