Essential oils are mostly used in everyday life in two ways: dermally and by inhalation.
When I say inhalation, I don’t mean that usual image people have – leaning over a pot full of steaming water, your head covered with a towel. Inhalation means breathing in various substances, and in this case, essential oils.
The most common way to disperse essential oils in a room, and in that way inhaling it, is by using a diffuser. There are many different types of diffusers on the market these days, the most effective ones are nebulizing and ultrasonic diffusers.
Diffusers are very useful and practical to use. As long as you don’t use the tea light essential oil diffuser (burner) that heats the oils (this kind of oil distribution is not a good idea- the heat destroys the healing qualities of essential oils), any kind of diffuser that works on a “cold” principle is fine.
But, quality diffusers are expensive and maybe you are reluctant to invest in it. Also, they work on electricity, so you are dependent to use it somewhere near the power socket. You usually pick one place where the diffuser will stand (near the electricity and away from children), you don’t carry it around.
So, diffusers are a brilliant idea, but there is also one other way to indulge in daily essential oil inhalation, which is cheaper and in some cases, more simple, but as effective as diffusers.
Meet the aromatherapy sprays with essential oils.
What are essential oil sprays?
Essential oil sprays, or aromatherapy sprays, are a mixture of essential oils of your choice and alcohol. Instead of alcohol you can use water or hydrosol. I prefer using alcohol out of one simple reason- when I spray in my home with a mixture containing water, sometimes the carpets and floor remain moist. Since alcohol evaporates quickly, this does not happen.
What are the advantages of using sprays?
There are many advantages, and here are only several of them:
-They are cheap, much cheaper than investing in a good diffuser
-They are very easy to make
-The distribution of essential oils can be easily regulated by concentration of the mixture and the frequency of spraying
-You can make smaller quantities of different mixtures and use it accordingly
-You can carry the sprays wherever you go
-There is no heating, so essential oils remain intact
How to make aromatherapy sprays?
You will need a glass or plastic bottle with a spray pump, alcohol and essential oils.
You can buy the bottle with the pump in pharmacies or some specialised shops, but you can also use, for example, an old perfume bottle.
In pharmacies you can also buy the alcohol.
In a bottle of, say, 30 milliliters, put 70 drops of essential oils and fill the bottle with alcohol. Close the bottle with the spray pump and you’re ready to go!
This is a mixture of approximately 10% of essential oils, which gives a rather saturated blend. I prefer to spray less for more scent, but if you like it to be milder, you can use less essential oils (let’s say, 40 drops in a 30 milliliter bottle).
When you spend the mixture, you can of course reuse the bottle.
How to spray?
Essential oils will not dissolve in the alcohol, there will always be a visible layer oil in the bottle. So, to distribute it evenly you have to shake the bottle and spray. And again, shake and spray. That way, the oils will always mix with alcohol just before you spray.
Recipes for aromatherapy sprays with essential oils
There are so many different essential oils, and when you take into account the various blends you can make with them, the possibilities are endless. The following recipes are only rough guidelines, just to give you an idea what and how you can make.
Of course, only your creativity and smell preferences will decide which spray you will make and use.
Also, I am suggesting only the simplest recipes, with only two essential oils in each mixture. You can combine more different oils, naturally. These recipes are meant to be as an incentive to aromatherapy enthusiasts to make their own sprays, and at the beginning of experimenting it’s always best to keep it simple.
1. Essential oil room spray – purifying and refreshing
This one is definitely a classic. The most popular oil for purifying is tea tree – it is a strong antiseptic and acts against bacteria, viruses and fungi. Lemon has a very pleasant, recognisable scent, and is very refreshing. Combined together they make a wonderful smelling and effective blend, which can be also used as a preventative during winter.
In a 30 milliliter bottle put:
40 drops of tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)
30 drops of lemon (Citrus limonum)
Fill the bottle with alcohol and close it with a spray pump.
Also, you can use only 70 drops of lemon and you just made a lovely spray for your bathroom.
2. Essential oils spray – antiviral
If you are in a middle of a flu season (or any other viral infection), it is good to protect yourself and your family against this unpleasant disease. You will need essential oils that are strongly antiviral – there are several of them, but probably the strongest one is ravintsara. Howood also acts against viruses, and at the same time it has a very pleasing, perfume-like scent (reminiscent of rosewood).
Use this spray in your home (as a prevention, or when somebody is ill), but don’t forget to use its benefits in your office, too.
For 30 milliliters of spray use:
35 drops of ravintsara (Cinnamomum camphora CT cineol)
35 drops howood (Cinnamomum camphora CT linalol)
Fill the bottle with alcohol.
3. Aromatherapy calming spray
When calming properties are discussed, the first oil that comes to mind is lavender. You can make a spray with lavender alone, but if you want to add a citrus note, then essential oils mandarin or bergamot will amplify the effect.
Use this spray for a calming atmosphere or in your bedroom, for a nice, restful night. You can also spray it lightly on your bed linen. Children’s bedroom also!
4. Essential oil spray for the shoe closet
This is one spray that I use very often – it prevents unpleasant smell coming from the closet and disinfects the shoes. Simply spray inside the shoes and enjoy the refreshing scent.
20 drops of peppermint (Mentha piperita) (or spearmint – Mentha spicata)
50 drops of grapefruit (Citrus paradisi)
Alcohol up to 30 milliliters
5. Aromatherapy spray for the car
Even though sometimes I have a feeling that many drivers would need a calming spray, for the car it is best to use oils that clear your mind and keep you focused.
Since the spray will be used in a small confined space, it is best to make this mixture less concentrated, meaning with less essential oils. Please take care how and where you spray, you don’t want the mixture the end up all over your passengers. And of course, never spray while driving.
For 30 milliliters put
15 drops of rosemary cineol (Rosmarinus officinalis CT cineol)
15 drops of fir (Abies sibirica)
Alcohol up to 30 milliliters
6. Aromatherapy spray for yoga mats
I have such good fortune to have a yoga teacher who is not only brilliant at yoga, plays gongs and Tibetan bowls at each yoga session, but also uses essential oils during our classes. She gave me the idea to use essential oil spray for disinfecting and refreshing yoga mats. You simply spray the mat and then lightly rub it with a clean cloth. Result: clean and nicely scented mat. Bonus: you inhale the essential oils from your mat while doing yoga.
But don’t forget to give your yoga mat a good wash now and then.
For 30 milliliters of spray put
30 drops of tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)
40 drops of sweet orange (Citrus sinensis)
Alcohol to fill up the bottle
Some more ideas for aromatherapy sprays
These were only a couple of very simple recipes, just to give you an idea of what you can do.
There are many more different sprays you can use- the first to come to mind is a perfume. In that case you can consider using some more precious oils like rose, jasmine, ylang-ylang, sandalwood, patchouli… Be aware that perfumery is a science in itself, so don’t be discouraged if your first attempts are not so nice smelling as you would want it to be.
Maybe you will be interested in making some other sprays, such as:
- Sensual spray (aphrodisiac) for intimate moments;
- Spray against winter blues (mainly citrus oils);
- Anti-lice spray for hair (a complete recipe will probably be published soon in one of my posts):
- Spray for pillows, linen and clothes
- Spray for the office (cephalic or calming- depending on your needs);
- Spray for the kitchen (against unpleasant smells);
- Cleaning spray
- Repellant spray (for various insects like mosquitos, ants or flies);
- Cooling spray for summertime;
- Hair spray;
- Body spray
And many more…
If you would like to use more than one or two essential oils in your spray and you’re not sure how to start blending, there are many already made blends (or synergies) on the market, so don’t hesitate to use them. The principle is the same: put 30-70 drops of the essential oil blend in 30 milliliters of alcohol.
Also, if you are really reluctant to make your own spray, there is a good choice of already made sprays on the market. But, I urge you to try it – it’s really very simple and enjoyable.
Aromatherapy sprays with essential oils are a very versatile and practical tool for enjoying the benefits of plants in a daily life. Simple to make and yet very effective. If you’re not using it already, I invite you to try it as soon as possible.
© 2016 Vlatka Mileusnic All Rights Reserved
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