Essential Oils: Myths and Facts

What are Essential Oils?

Essential oils are simply plant extracts. Concentrated essences that capture plant scents and vital properties. These are obtained by either cold pressing or distillation process from the plant’s matter. Use of essential oils in medicine and beauty dates back as far as 4500 B.C.E.

Essential Oils in Skincare

In skincare and cosmetic products, these extracts are used for both as a fragrance and also for functional properties such as anti-aging or antibacterial.

Scents added to the skincare can be either of natural origin - essential oils or fragrances made from synthetic components that imitate natural scents. When choosing a product that’s scented with essential oils, it’s important to know the pros and cons. 

Safety Concerns & Considerations

If you’re concerned about the impact of essential oils on your skin, that’s understandable but thankfully you’re protected! The EU Cosmetic Regulation has strict limits on what essential oils can be used in products and to what extent/percentage they can be added. All these regulations are in place to protect consumers from harmful effects of incorrect use of the essential oils. All cosmetics fully natural or partly synthetic before can reach the market that must go via Safety Assessment Protocols conducted by certified laboratories.

Allergens - constituents of essential oils

Some people may react allergically to essential oils. Typical allergic reactions to essential oils or products containing essential oils include a burning or stinging sensation, dry or cracked skin, blisters or bumps, hives, eye irritation, and a runny nose among others. The easiest way to ensure safety is to run a patch test before starting to use any cosmetic product for the first time.

To patch test a product simply apply a small amount of it to a washed and cleaned patch of skin and leave it for 24h. If you experience any burning, itching or redness remove and wash away the patch area. If you are allergic to the product it will be easy to tell.

Potential skin benefits

There are many benefits of adding essential oils to skincare and cosmetic products and for most people if correctly used they can provide a ton of goodness to the skin. Essential oils can help improve mood, help you smell good and/or can have beneficial effects on your skin. 

Fragrance

Who doesn’t love to smell great? Having essential oils added to your products creates a wonderful (if it’s the right combination of oils) scent that leaves you smelling heavenly. Some essential oils are proven to help boost your mood or have other emotional benefits. For example lavender is supposed to promote a sense of calm (great for those with anxiety), ylang-ylang has been known to help boost self-esteem and confidence, and bergamot helps with evoking positive emotions. If you’re looking to have a certain impact on your mental and emotional well-being, it’s helpful to research which essential oils can boost a certain mood/emotion.

Skin

Depending on what kind of skin you have and what challenge you’re wanting to tackle, certain essential oils may prove to be beneficial. Skincare products that contain essential oils frankincense could help with anti-aging or wrinkles, while products containing tea tree oil are known to be anti-inflammatory and can help with acne-prone skin.

Personal choice 

Whether or not you seek out or avoid products that contain essential oils is really up to you and a personal choice! There are people who look for products that contain synthetic fragrance oils, while others avoid those at all costs and seek those using essential oils. Some factors to consider before using products with essential oils are if you have sensitive skin or not, if you’ve had previous reactions to certain oils, and if there’s a family history of allergic reactions. With your skin, it’s always important to err on the side of caution. 

The most importantly - read the labels

In order to avoid any potential reactions or irritation, it’s important to thoroughly read the labels, directions of application provided by the brands and to do a skin test beforehand. Some products aren’t meant to be applied close to your eyes, while others are only supposed to be left on your skin for a few minutes at a time. Make sure to read and follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

Potion Organic

With products from Potion Organic you never have to worry about any lack of transparency or harmful ingredients. All the allergic components are included within the ingredients list with double asterisk and comment: (**) naturally occur in essential oils.

We strictly adhere to the EU Cosmetic Regulations protocols and our products never exceed recommended limits as safety of our customers is our first and foremost priority.

Potion Organic includes a list of all potential allergens on the labels and the product pages along with directions of use. Please read these carefully before using any of our products. We highly recommend running a patch test before using your cosmetics for the first time to ensure your safety.