What are carrier oils?
Some essential oils are recommended to be used “neat” (this means that you drop a few drops of oil out of the bottle and apply it directly to your skin). But most essential oils are suggested to be diluted with a carrier oil before applying them to the skin (check the label on your essential oil bottle and/or your reference guide for dilution recommendations). Aside from canola and vegetable oil, most oils can be used as a carrier oil. Carrier oils prevent skin irritation (because essential oils are so potent), help the body absorb essential oils, extend the life of essential oils, and allow essential oils to be used on sensitive skin. Carrier oils also allow you to spread just a few drops of essential oil to a large area of the body. They make it possible for essential oils to be used for massages, creams, lotions, lip balms, rubs, and sugar scrubs.
My three carrier oils…
The three most common carrier oils most oilers tend to use are grapeseed oil, coconut oil, or Young Living V-6 oil (although many other oils can be used). When I first began using Young Living essential oils, I diluted my oils with grapeseed oil. Nothing fancy, just the plain ole’ grapeseed oil that we cook with. I used it for a long time because it was simple and something we already had on hand.
As time went on, I became curious about other types of carrier oils. Coconut oil was the second carrier oil that I tried. I loved it! Coconut oil is solid at room temperature, which makes it a perfect carrier oil to use when making essential oil based creams, lotions, rubs, lip balms, sugar scrubs, etc. (see my popular Whipped Coconut Oil Body Butter Recipe here) Coconut oil does a great job moisturizing skin but can clog pores so be careful when using on this on your face.
I next want to try Young Living’s V-6 vegetable oil complex. V-6 is an organic carrier oil that is a combination of several different carrier oils (coconut oil, sesame seed oil, grape seed oil, sweet almond oil, sweet germ oil, sunflower seed oil, and olive oil). It nourishes the skin, has a long shelf life, and will not stain clothes. V-6 I am sure will become a favorite carrier oil.
Here are some tips for purchasing your carrier oils…
- Grapeseed oil: You should be able to find this at your grocery store.
- Coconut oil: Purchase organic, raw, cold pressed coconut oil if possible.
- Young Living V-6 enhanced vegetable oil complex can be purchased through Young Living.