“The Art and Science of Using Plant Oils in Treatment Through Inhalation
or Topical Application”
Aromatherapy has its roots in ancient healing practices from all over the world. Archaeologists have found traces of multiple medicinal plants during excavations of ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, the Orient and throughout Europe. Medicinal gardens contained things like
- apple trees
- black pepper
- frankincense and myrrh.
Hippocrates, a Greek physician is revered as the “Father of Medicine”. The quote “Let your medicine be your food and your food be your medicine” is attributed to him. He rejected the notion that mystical prayers and sacrifices were healing and did some of the very first “research by observation” on the effects of plant-based medicine.
Books referred to as “Herbals” were printed by the 16th century. This was used by the woman of the house to make remedies. Complex remedies were bought from apothecaries who could do crude distillations.
Even during the Dark Ages and especially during the Black Plague, people would carry little pouches of aromatic herbs to ward off infection. Historians dismissed the practice as superstition. We know these herbs to be strong antivirals, anti-bacterials and disinfectants. Statistically speaking, perfumers who worked daily with real botanicals had a higher than average survival rate during The Plague.
Plant oils and healing
Despite history, I must admit to my strong skepticism that plant oils could do as much as I had been reading and hearing about. At first, I thought it was hocus-pocus non-sense. I was a firm believer in the “placebo effect”, that a condition or illness would improve just because the person had the expectation it would be helpful. My opinion began to change on talking to those in the medical profession who had first-hand experiences of aromatherapy success with patients. Some were in very serious condition and unaware of their environments, so the placebo effect could not occur. Strict case studies have been performed at highly reputable hospitals including the Cleveland Clinic, the Mayo Clinic and others. This enticed us to dig deeper and learn more.
However, for a skeptic, the best proof comes in personally experiencing relief as an “unbeliever”. Using a product that you believe won’t work and finding it truly does….repeatedly and consistently….can be quite eye-opening. I am happy to say we have experienced this and we are no longer skeptics. Having a chemical background has also allowed us to learn and understand why and how a specific compound works.
We are excited to incorporate more essential oils into our Goat Milk Soap products and expand into Essential Oil products. Essential oils have a smaller molecular structure which allows easy and fast absorption, thus offering potential skin and overall health benefits. From a scent perspective, the choices are limited and the same scent can vary from field to field depending on growing conditions, geography and time of year.
Fragrance oils have a larger molecular structure which prevents immediate absorption, so the primary benefit received is enjoyment of the scent. Scents can be powerful and stir an emotional response. We evaluate our suppliers and all our fragrance oils are “skin-safe” without phthalates, alcohol, petroleum byproducts etc. While they do not possess the Nature-ceutical™ benefits that essential oils do, synthetic fragrances can uplift moods, give pleasure and increase happiness, which is a health benefit in itself.
This is why we offer our customers the freedom to choose between Essential Oil & Fragrance Oil soaps. Our mission is to provide healthy, safe, skin-friendly, nature based and/or nature identical options. This is why we sought certification and a deeper understanding of the various essential oils. As long as we are in business, our promise to our customers is to continually pursue education and advances in natural skin care. between Essential Oil & Fragrance Oil soaps. Our mission is to
If you want to explore the burgeoning world of Essential Oils, talk to us. We’ll help you open the door to a world of natural options. In our next newsletter, we will feature one specific essential oil and its potential benefits.