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July 26

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10 Carrier Oils for Essential Oils

With so many carrier oils available, choosing the right one for a specific project isn't always straight forward. Carrier oils vary widely in scent, pigments, skin feel, effect on the skin, fatty acid profile, unsaponifiables and shelf life. 

When the essential oil or aromatherapy blend is the focus, a good carrier oil will support the essential oils without overpowering them. For this you want neutral, mild carrier oils with little to no scent and pigments. It is also important to choose carrier oils that have a longish shelf life. 

Here are 10 oils that work well as carrier oils for essential oils and aromatherapy blends.

Abyssinian oil

Abyssinian oil has a rich yet absorbent feel on the skin, mild to no scent and minimal pigments, typically pale gold to yellow in color. It has an unusual fatty acid structure with a high percentage of very-long chain fatty acids. Abyssinian oil is a versatile all-around skincare oil. 

Use: as a carrier oil and base oil for aromatherapy blends and essential oils, for skincare formulas and facial oils, as a hair oil and as a base for body care. 

Almond oil

Sweet almond oil is a gentle, mild oil with little to no scent and is usually pale gold to clear in color. It is a go-to carrier oil for essential oil blends and is usually easy to source. Almond oil is dominant in monounsaturated fatty acids specifically oleic acid. 

Use: as a carrier oil for essential oil blends, and as a base oil for body oils and body care formulas. 

Camellia seed oil

Camellia seed oil is pressed from seeds harvested from the same plant that gives us green and black tea. It is high in tannins which give the oil an astringent property and a light absorbent skin feel. Camellia seed oil ranges from clear to pale yellow with little to no scent. 

Use: as a carrier oil for essential oils and as a base for facial oils and oil serums. Camellia seed oil is good for oily skin as a facial oil or as part of a formula.

Daikon radish seed oil

Daikon radish seed oil has a light skin feel and is highly absorbent. It is a clear oil without scent making it a good versatile base for essential oils. To help extend the shelf-life, store in a refrigerator or very cool dark space. 

Use: use as a hair oil and in hair care products, as a carrier oil for essential oils and as a base for face and body care formulas. 

Grapeseed oil

Grapeseed oil is light and absorbent on the skin. It has minimal to no scent and ranges from pale green to deep green in color depending on how refined the oil is. It is high in polyunsaturated fatty acids so store in a cool dark space or in the refrigerator to extend the shelf life. Grapeseed oil is often easy to find at grocery making it a reliable go-to carrier oil. 

Use: as a base for skincare formulas, alone as a facial oil for oily to normal skin types, and as a base for essential oils and aromatherapy blends. 

Jojoba oil

Jojoba 'oil' is not a true oil but a liquid wax that feels and behaves like an oil. It has a rich skin feel and a long shelf life. Scent can range for minimal to slightly smoky and is usually pale gold to yellow in color. Jojoba oil has a long shelf life. It is non-allergenic and is well tolerated by most skin types. 

Use: as a general base oil for skincare and essential oil blends. 

Marula oil

Marula oil is an elegant oil with a silky skin feel and a rich gold color. It is a healing, nourishing oil that helps protect and replenish dry skin, sooth and reduce inflammation and protect the skin barrier. 

Use: in face and body care formulas, alone as a facial oil and as a carrier oil for aromatherapy blends. 

Meadowfoam seed oil

Meadowfoam seed oil is nourishing, absorbent and light feeling on the skin. It has a high percentage of very-long chain fatty acids that help protect the oil and extend shelf life. Meadowfoam seed oil ranges from pale yellow to rich gold in color with minimal to no scent. 

Use: meadowfoam seed oil is used as a base for a wide range of skincare formulas, as a carrier oil for essential oil blends and in hair care formulas. 

Peach kernel oil

Peach kernel oil is one of the softest feeling oils on the skin. It has no scent and minimal to no pigments in the oil making it a good all around carrier oil. Peach kernel oil is protective, nourishing and mild. 

Use: as a carrier oil for aromatherapy, in face and body formulas and as a rich facial oil. 

Plum kernel oil

Plum kernel oil is a mild oil with a silky feel on the skin. It absorbs well and has minimal color. Unrefined versions can have a pronounced nutty marzipan scent but refined versions can be odorless. Plum kernel oil has naturally occurring plant sterols that help calm inflammation and reduce redness. 

Use: as a neutral base for face and body care formulas and as a carrier oil for aromatherapy blends. 

What are some of your favorite carrier oils? Leave a comment below


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  • Your knowledge is just superb!
    Just reviewing your posts adds new “connect the dots!’
    Sometime I would like to join your membership.

  • Thanks for this oily information! I’m going to add this to my binder with slight modifications to include pricing and availability.

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