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The Magic of Aromatherapy
You can harness the healing and uplifting qualities of plant fragrances to help you relax, unwind and even treat minor ailments.
You can find out simply and pleasurably just how beneficial aromatherapy can be by adding a few drops of lavender essential oil to the next bath that you take. You will notice the difference immediately. As you smell the relaxing fragrance of the oil surrounding you, its peacefulness and tranquility will lift your spirits, promote relaxation and soothe stress.
Aromatherapy is the art of healing with essential oils – distilled essences that have been extracted from plants. These can be used in massage and inhalation techniques, added to bathroom products such as soap, skin creams, bath gel and shampoos, and also used to create room fragrances.
Aromatherapy also involves the use of incense (in loose, powdered form or as Joss sticks), potpourri, steam inhalations, scented candles and fresh flowers.
How Aromatherapy Works
When you breathe through the nose we smell the fragrance, we take its healing molecules into our bodies. Heating essential oils and burning Joss sticks vaporizes the oil so that we can breathe in its molecules more easily. Essential oils applied to the skin are absorbed into bloodstream to take immediate effect. Relaxing in a soothing, fragrant bath will improve your mood as well as your skin.
Getting started with aromatherapy
You’ll no doubt want to start buying yourself the oils and other equipment you need to put your new knowledge into practice such as incense, joss stick, and an essential Oil Diffuser.
Essential and blended oils
The mostly commonly used aromatherapy equipment is essential oil. You can buy small bottles of oil from many stores and shopping malls. Undiluted oils can seem expensive, but you need to use only a few drops in most applications. Undiluted oils can be used in vaporizers, steam inhalation and bath, and can be diluted in a carrier base, such as avocado oil or unscented shampoo, for use in massage, shampoo, toning and moisturizing.
Diluted up to 10 drops of oil in 30 ml of carrier base before using it on your skin. Rub your massage oil into tired muscles to feel an instant benefit. Some stores sell ready blended massage oils. These don’t need to be diluted, but aren’t suitable for use in vaporizers.
Scented candles, candle scented with essential oils are a great way to get relaxing, stimulating and sensual aromas into your atmosphere. Scented candles work better on your mood and emotions than on your body. Their effects are subtle and work well over a long period of time, such as a quiet evening at home, rather than providing quick results. Fragrances such as Centinela and lavender are excellent insect repellent. Use candles scented with these aromas while you’re sitting outside on a warm summer evening. A more intense way to fragrance your environment is to use essential oil in a candle vaporizer, to do this, half filled the vaporizer bowl with water and add up to five drops of oil. Light the candle beneath the bowl. Scented candles fill your surroundings with gentle relaxing aroma.
Joss sticks and incense, another excellent way to feel your room with uplifting sense is to burn incense or Joss sticks. The fragrances used to make Joss sticks and incense are usually very expensive to buy as oils. This is simply a more economical way of enjoying their benefits. Light Joss stick and incense beside a scented candle, vaporizer, or other Joss sticks to blend different aromas. A Joss sticks burn, they will leave behind hot ash, always be sure to place your Joss stick on a surface that will not be damaged, or by a special holder that will catch the ash as it falls. You can also stand your Joss picks up in a potted plant or dish of sand. Incense is especially useful for create aiding a very spiritual atmosphere for meditation, prayer or yoga.
Decorative glass beads, a potted plant or window box, or a small glass of sand all make ideal Joss stick holders.
Diffusers are a great way to use Essential Oils:
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