How to Use Essential Oils Safely

Beginners we got you.

Essential Oil

If you have been wanting to experiment with essential oils, you need to know a bit about how to use them first. Essential oils can be dangerous, so it's good to learn as much as you can before you dive in. We contacted Debra Duneier, author and Feng Shui Master for some help.

Debra Duneier is the author of EcoChi. From her website: EcoChi is more than design, it is a revolution. It is a lifestyle shift that blends Classical Feng Shui, Green and Sustainable Living and Environmental Psychology… how people feel in their space. EcoChi teaches us that indoor space has a life…it breathes, it has bones, it contains and activates the 5 senses and at its best- the 6th sense. By bringing nature’s elements indoors in a whole new way, the EcoChi system attracts prosperity, harmony, health and happiness—while at the same time propagating environmental integrity.

Here are 10 Essential Oil tips from Debra as well as two recipes to try on your own.

Pure essential oils should never be used directly on the skin. Add 15-20 drops of essential oil to 1 1/2 Tablespoons of Sweet Almond carrier oil. When applying essential oils, less is more! These oils are highly concentrated liquids so use in moderation.

When using an essential oil for the first time, do a skin patch test. Dab the oil on to the inside of your arm. If the area turns red, or if there is burning or itchiness, wash the area and do not use that product.

Avoid getting essential oils in your eyes, nose, or ears. Lather up with soap and water and thoroughly wash your hands immediately after using essential oils.

Do not ingest essential oils. These flowery sounding, great-smelling essential oils are not meant for human consumption.

Working with pure essential oils may cause skin irritations. To prevent itchy skin or inflammation wear disposable latex gloves (or latex-free alternatives) when creating your lotions and potions.

Do your research! Each essential oil is unique so checkout the potential benefits and safety precautions before use. One resource is Essential Oil Directory.

Avoid drug induced interactions or side effects. Consult your doctor before experimenting with essential oils. For example: Chamomile, lavender, and lemon balm have relaxing and calming qualities however if you are taking sedatives or using sleeping pills these oils may heighten the effect of your medication. Before you use essential oils check with your doctor. If you are pregnant or have certain health conditions do not assume that all essential oils are safe to use.

Work with essential oils in an area where you have good ventilation. It is fun to create blends for personal fragrance, lotions or candles but overuse of essential oils can prompt a headache or even dizziness so take a break outdoors and remember to work near an open window.

Essential oils are flammable. Keep them away from electricity, sparks and flames to avoid any fire hazards.

Keep essential oils out of the reach of children and animals. Store your oils in dark glass bottles tightly sealed, in a safe place, far away from pets and young children.


EcoChi Recipe for a Warm Relaxing Bath

  • ¼ cup of Sweet Almond carrier oil
  • 3 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 drops Frankincense
  • 3 drops Rose

EcoChi Recipe for a Cool Invigorating Bath

  • ¼ cup of Jojoba carrier oil
  • 2 drops Peppermint
  • 1 drop Pine
  • 3 drops Rosemary

Looking to just buy and not mix? Debra’s favorite Essential Oil product is: Terre d'Oc Coco, Massage & Care Body Oil made with the pure ingredients of: coconut, sesame and safflower oil, Plumeria, lily and jasmine extract, carrot, ginger and cinnamon extract, natural fragrance with essential oils. This product is ready to use (no worries about mixing your own) and doubles as a skin and hair moisturizer. This oil is inspired by beauty secrets from Bali and the belief that flowers are a gift from the gods. (Note from Jen Adkins: I don't like sharing about a product that you can't easily get yourself. Terre d'Oc Coco's website is highly lacking in info for this product, or any of their products, actually but they are on facebook if you're interested in trying to find out more about this oil.)

Looking for other DIY skin care recipes? Try Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Scrub