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Natural handmade cosmetics make extensive use of essential oils, but you should always keep in mind the recommended dosage to avoid problems and irritation.
Essential oils are extracted from plants and flowers. Besides having a very intense fragrance, they have many interesting properties. They are natural but very concentrated, so you should always dilute them in carrier oil or cosmetics to avoid irritation.
In the essential oils dilution chart below you can see how many grams or how many drops of essential oils you should use for 100g of carrier oil or cosmetic formula. 30 drops of essential oil is about 1 ml or 0.9 g.
|Body||0.5-2 g depending on the intensity you want to achieve.||
15 to 60 drops depending on the intensity you want to achieve.
0.1 - 0.5 g
|3 - 15 drops|
0.1 - 0.2 g of essential oils suitable for the eye contour, such as lavender or chamomile.
|3 to 6 drops of essential oils suitable for the eye contour, such as lavender or chamomile.|
0.1 - 0.5 g of lip-safe essential oils, such as sweet orange. If you use mint, a lower dosage is enough.
|3 - 15 drops of lip-safe essential oils, such as sweet orange. If you use mint, a lower dosage is enough.|
|Hair|| 0.1 - 0.5 g in case of products that come in direct contact with the skin. Stick to the minimum dose if you have sensitive skin.
Up to 1 g or so for scented products that do not come in contact with the skin.
3 to 15 drops in case of products that come in direct contact with the skin. Stick to the minimum dose if you have sensitive skin.
0.2 to 0.6 g. Avoid aggressive essential oils.
|6 - 18 drops. Avoid aggressive essential oils.|
0.1 to 0.5 g, preferably diluted in a tablespoon of milk or honey. 0.1 g is usually enough for a sufficiently fragrant bath. Higher dosages are sometimes used for therapeutic baths.
|3 to 15 drops, preferably diluted in a tablespoon of milk or honey. 3 drops is usually enough for a sufficiently fragrant bath. For therapeutic baths, higher dosages are sometimes used.|
Essential oils dosage notes
- Essential oils may cause allergy and irritation in particularly sensitive people, who should stick to the minimum doses or avoid them completely.
- Use the maximum doses only when really needed. Never exceed them.
- DIY perfumes doses are higher (30-40%), but in regular cosmetic formulas you should always follow the dosage of the chart above. If you can get a intense enough scent with a low dosage, stick to it.
- Some essential oils, such as those of rose, mint, ylang ylang, jasmine and tea tree, are very intense and very few drops may be enough to achieve a good intensity. In these cases, rely on your nose and use smaller doses.
Essential oils and pregnancy
Essential oils should be avoided during pregnancy and especially the first trimester.
After the first trimesteryou can use an the pregnancy safe essential oils in very small doses: rose, chamomile, lavender, neroli, mandarin and bergamot without furocoumarins.
Jasmine, patchouli and sandalwood shouldn't cause problems after the first trimester even if it's easy to find conflicting opinions about it.
To be on the safe side, avoid essential oils when pregnant. If you really want to use the ones that are safe, try to stick to 1-3 drops per 100 g of carrier oil or cosmetic formula, but only after the first trimester. I wouldn't use more than 5 drops.