Home DIY Personal Hygiene Projects Top Methods of Essential Oil Application

Top Methods of Essential Oil Application


When it comes to using essential oils, there are several methods of application we can use to achieve the results desired. While most articles recommend three basic methods of using essential oils, we are going to expand on that knowledge a bit and share that information with you, so sit back, buckle up, and enjoy this short ride down the essential oil information highway!


This method is used to deliver the benefits of essential oils through the process of breathing them in. It is commonly used with hot water baths, hot compresses, and/or with a diffuser. The standard recommended dosage is 10 drops of the preferred essential oil. The purpose of using this method is for respiratory relief. A word of caution when using this method; prolonged exposure and inhalation of essential oils may increase the chance of headaches, dizziness, vertigo, and nausea. Do not exceed recommended inhalation times.

Hot Water Baths:

When using essential oils in a hot water bath, it is highly recommended they be introduced to the water through a carrier, such as salts or emulsifiers. Bath salts and emulsifiers allow the essential oils to be dispersed into the water safely. If essential oil drops are placed directly in hot water, without the use of a carrier, the oils will rest on top of the water and be capable of coming into direct contact with the flesh. This, in turn, may cause dermal toxicity, especially if the essential oil being used is one that has a warming nature. There are several “spicy” essential oils that should not be used in hot water baths. Always do the research on the essential oil(s) to be used before considering this option, and then ensure all recommended procedures are followed. The purpose of using this method of application is for respiratory relief, skin and circulatory improvement, relief from stress and insomnia, and to ease muscle pain and nerve tension. Do not exceed recommended essential oil drops or bathing times.


This method of application is used when a specified area of the body requires individual attention. The recommended procedure for using this method calls for 10 drops of the desired essential oil to be introduced directly into a bowl of hot/warm water, after which a cloth is soaked in the mixture and applied directly to the affected area. The purpose for using this method is to provide relief from muscle cramps, as well as to enhance skin conditions. Always follow the recommended times when using a hot compress.

Facial Steam:

This is the age old method of relieving symptoms that grandma was famous for using when we showed up at her house sick. The basic method of application here calls for 1-5 drops of the desired essential oil to be dispersed into a large mixing bowl of steaming hot water. The individual requiring attention is then placed in a position that allows them to hang their head over the bowl. A cloth towel is then placed over the head of the individual suffering, and allowed to drape over the sides of the bowl to create a semi-enclosed environment. The sufferer is then instructed to begin breathing in the steam rising from the bowl. This method is used to provide respiratory relief, as well as to open sinus passages.


This is one of the most commonly used methods of applying essential oils to an individual. When used in this method, essential oils should be diluted in a carrier oil, such as fractionated coconut oil. The amount of dilution suggested for use with massage therapies varies according to essential oil being used, in conjunction with the age and condition of the individual being massaged. Always ensure that your read and adhere to the recommendations being made when using this application method.

Direct Inhalation:

This method of application refers to the direct, undiluted application of an essential oil. In order to use this method, no carrier oil is required. 1-2 drops of the desired essential oil is placed in the palms of the hands, rubbed together vigorously, and then inhaled deeply, directly from the cupped hands. This method of application should only be used with essential oils that are deemed safe for direct application to the skin.


This method of application requires the use of a diffuser. There are several diffuser models available to choose from. The primary purpose for using this method is to deliver a continuous aromatic environment without allowing it to be overwhelming. It is highly recommended that the instructions for the diffuser are followed and that the directions provided with the essential oils are adhered to precisely.


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