Essential Oils: Storage, Safety and Other Uses

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Essential oils are oils derived from plants through steam distillation. I use essential oils in many things I make for several reasons. Not only do they have a wonderful all-natural smell, but they are known for their medicinal and therapeutic properties.

How to Store Essential Oils

Essential Oils are considered volatile, meaning they will quickly lose their scent and therapeutic properties if they are exposed to air, sunlight, or extreme temperatures. There are a few things you can do to keep your essential oils stored correctly.

  1. Store essential oils in dark glass bottles. Sunlight can cause essential oils to deteriorate and lose their smell. Dark glass such as amber and cobalt keep out harmful light and keep the oils safe.
  2. Store essential oils in a cool dark place. Essential oils need to be stored where the temperature is stable. A shelf or drawer is a good place to keep them cool and away from sunlight. Also, consider buying a wooden essential oil storage box.
  3. Avoid bottles with a rubber stopper or cap. Essential oils can cause the rubber to deteriorate and ruin the essential oils. Instead look for a bottle with a built-in dropper.

Essential Oil Safety Precautions

Essential oils are essentially safe to use, although there are a few simple safety precautions to take when using them.

  1. Do not use essential oils undiluted on skin. This can cause skin irritation. Instead add a few drops of essential oil to a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, sweet almond oil, or jojoba oil.
  2. Some essential oils may cause sensitivity, irritation, or and allergic reaction in some individuals. Try a small patch test on a small area of skin before using.
  3. Watch out for essential oils that are phototoxic, or sun sensitive.

Carrier Oils and Other Uses

Carrier oils are often used to dilute essential oils especially when applied to skin. There are many different types of carrier oils. Although carrier oils have different properties, which carrier oil you choose is up to you.

Some Carrier Oils:

  • Coconut Oil
  • Jojoba Oil
  • Sweet Almond Oil
  • Avocado Oil
  • Apricot Kernel Oil
  • Sunflower Oil
  • Grapeseed Oil
  • Rosehip Oil

Essential oils have many uses, such as making household products, health and beauty products, and aromatherapy. They work great in a diffuser because their wonderful scent and for other therapeutic properties.

How to Re-pot a House Plant

Taking care of house plants can be more than just making sure they have enough water and sunlight. Eventually, house plants grow and they will need to be re-potted into a larger planter.

Before you start re-potting, you will need to figure out what size planter you will need. If necessary, measure the planter you already have, and choose one that is just a few inches larger. Make sure there is a hole in the bottom for drainage. You will also need a saucer to place under the planter to catch any water.

Next, you will need potting soil. I chose a mix that is specifically for indoor plants. For this project, you might want to lay down some old newspaper or something else you have on hand to catch the potting soil and help with clean-up.

What you will need: potting soil, planter, saucer for planter

Instructions:

  • Start by gently removing the plant from the planter. An easy way to do this is to lightly squeeze or shake the plant to loosen it from the planter. Then, grab the plant at the very base with your fingers and gently pull it from the container. Try to keep the soil and roots together.
  • Next, place the plant in the new planter to figure out how much soil you will need to fill the bottom. If the top of the plant soil is about 4 inches from the top of the new planter, I will need about 4 inches of soil in the bottom of the pot.
  • Remove the plant and fill the bottom of the pot with soil. Make sure to pack the soil down lightly as you go.
  • Place the plant back into the planter.
  • Fill the space surrounding the plant with more potting soil, making sure the pack the soil down as you go.
  • Fill the pot to the top with soil, leaving about 1/2 to 1 inch for watering. Then, thoroughly water the plant.
  • You’re finished! Place the planter in the saucer and find a spot near a window where it will get sunlight.