Home What are essential oils?

What are essential oils?

What are essential oils?

Fruit salad with grapefruit and orange, pomegranate seeds, honey and lemon, decorated with mint

Is there anything better than the tang of citrus zest from freshly cut oranges?  Or the smell of sweet honey? Or the waft of perfume from home grown roses and lavender? Not only do these things smell divine, the natural essential oils found in them have medicinal and therapeutic benefits. Essential oils are removed from the seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers, and other parts of plants through a distillation process. The extracted oil concentrate contains both the fragrance and the properties of the plant.

Essential oils are composed of volatile aromatic compounds that determine both the aroma of the oil and their unique benefits. Over 3,000 varieties of volatile aromatic compounds have been identified to date.  The physical and chemical properties of essential oils have a myriad of physical and psychological health and well-being applications.

With an increasing focus on healthy lifestyle choices, it is no wonder people are turning away from damaging chemicals and seeking natural alternatives to support health and beauty regimes.

History of essential oils

Essential oils have been in use for thousands of years in various cultures. Historical records provide a fascinating insight into how essential oils have been used. Documentation from Egypt, China. Greece, Rome, Persia, India and Europe, all make reference to using essential oils in food preparation, beauty treatment and for health care. Knowing that countless generations have turned to the healing properties of essential oils – albeit in a different format, is incredibly comforting. The Bible contains multiple references to aromatic plants, with one of the most well known being of the Magi bringing gold, frankincense and myrrh to the young Jesus. I love that in Exodus there is a ‘recipe’ provided for anointing oil.

God spoke to Moses – Take the best spices:

twelve and a half pounds of liquid myrrh;

half that much, six and a quarter pounds, of fragrant cinnamon;

six and a quarter pounds of fragrant cane;

twelve and a half pounds of cassia

—using the standard Sanctuary weight for all of them

—and a gallon of olive oil.

Make these into holy anointing oil, a perfumer’s skilful blend.

Exodus 30: 22-25 The Message Translation

The modern day equivalent would be

  • 1 tbsp fractionated coconut oil
  • 2 drops myrrh
  • 2 drops cinnamon (for the cinnamon and cassia)
  • 2 drops sweet orange (for the fragrant cane)
  • 1 drop frankincense(just because)*

Perfect for anointing, praying and meditation. It is safe to say that essential oils are not just a new fad.

*Adapted from here

dōTERRA essential oils at home

dōTERRA essential oils at home

Our family use of essential oils

I first started using essential oils 20 + years ago. Back then there were few choices and very little information – certainly nothing that was published online. To be honest, I knew very little about the healing properties I just liked the smell and I knew that burning orange and lavender created a calming effect.  The lady I purchased oils from stopped selling them, thus when my supply ran out, I stopped using them. Over the years I have dabbled by purchasing the odd oil here and there, but the quality was always a bit hit and miss.

It wasn’t until I noticed dōTERRA popping up in my instagram feed that I started looking into it more and was blown away by both the company and how amazing they really were. I purchased the home essential kit with a diffuser and have not looked back.

We use oils every single day in our home – we always have a blend diffusing, depending on the mood required! With two teenagers, the calming and motivating blend are often in demand!! I struggle with tension headaches from lingering health issues and I find my roller blend of lavender, peppermint and lemongrass helps relieve my head and neck tension very quickly. The common cry in our house is what oil should I use or can I make a blend for that! There are some fun memes circulating that say – There’s an oil for that! or Keep calm and apply an oil!  All jokes aside, we find there really is.

How to use essential oils

One of the best features about using essential oils is that you do not need to be an expert to get started. All you need is a basic understanding of how to safely and simply use them to start enjoying the benefits they bring.

There are three keys ways to use essential oils:


One way to experience the benefits of essential oils is aromatically, or by breathing them in.


Using a diffuser is the most effective way to enjoy essential oils aromatically.  Essential oil diffusers take a whole oil and transform it into a mist.

However if you don’t have a diffuser here are some of the other ways you can use essential oils aromatically:

  • Spritz essential oils on clothing or jewellery designed specifically for this purpose
  • Drip two to three drops of oil on the tiles during a hot shower
  • Place a drop of oil in your hand, rub the palms together, cup the hands over your nose, and inhale deeply
  • Mix oil with water in a spray bottle and mist over carpet, furniture, or other linens
  • Apply oil to a cotton ball and place in the air vents of your car


Essential oils are easily absorbed into the skin; however essential oils should always be mixed with a carrier oil before using topically.

Safe areas to apply
  • Neck
  • Forehead and temples
  • Chest and abdomen
  • Arms, legs, bottom of feet
Sensitive areas to avoid
  • Around the eyes
  • Inner ears
  • Broken, damaged, or injured skin
Other ways to topically apply essential oils include:
  • Placing a few drops of oil in a warm bath
  • Making a hot or cold compress by soaking a cloth in water, adding two drops of essential oil, and then applying
  • Mixing a few drops of essential oil with lotion or a daily moisturiser and apply to the skin


Essential oils are most likely already a big part of your daily diet. A large portion of the plants that we consume throughout the course of a day produce small amounts of essential oil.  It is important to note that some essential oils simply cannot be used internally—in any amount.

Effective methods for internal application:

  • Add essential oils to your favourite recipes by replacing fresh or dried herbs and spices with a drop of oil when cooking
  • Place essential oil drops into a veggie capsule and swallow with water
  • Add an essential oil to a glass of water, your morning smoothie, milk, tea, or other favourite beverages
  • Place a few drops of an essential oil into a small amount of yoghurt or apple sauce

How to incorporate oils into everyday life

Essential oils have slotted seamlessly into our everyday life. If you are wondering how you would use them, here are some points to think about:

  • Do you want to limit your use of chemicals in cleaning products?
  • Do you want to eliminate chemicals from your daily hair and beauty regime?
  • Do you need a natural immune boost at different times throughout the year?
  • Do you need occasional neck or head tension relief?
  • Do you like to add natural flavours to your cooking?
  • Do you need occasional digestive support?

Essential oils will help support all these and more.

Why dōTERRA?

I chose dōTERRA Essential Oils because of the purity and effectiveness of their oils and the integrity and values of the company.

With dōTERRA you can be assured that:

  • Every single batch of oil undergoes at least six (6) tests to ensure purity and quality
  • The oils are sourced indigenously around the world with great care for the growers, their families and sustainability
  • The company provides consistent education and support
  • dōTERRA has a beautiful culture of integrity and service

As a dōTERRA Wellness Advocate it is important for me to know that dōTERRA uses the highest standards in preparing their oils. They are committed to providing the purest, most potent essential oils possible.

I love that dōTERRA employs a global network of farmers who know intimately the process of growing plants for essential oils.

Every dōTERRA essential oil is put through the highest standard of rigorous and thorough testing and sets the bar for quality, purity, efficacy, and consistency. dōTERRA responsibly partners with essential oil artisans from over 40 countries, who champion the best seeds, soil, and growing environments. dōTERRA is impacting lives with co-impact sourcing; this ensures a long-term supply of Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade (CPTG) essential oils, whilst helping to strengthen economies in developing countries and improving the livelihoods of growers around the world.

On the Source to You website you can enter your unique Quality ID (found printed on each bottle of oil) to view a GC/MS report. I’d love to introduce you to these amazing oils.   Click here to learn more.