An Esscentful Year – Day 16/17

Gosh time seems to disappear!  And I struggle with linear time as it is!

My last post reflected briefly on some pertinent issues within the Aromatherapy industry. And I left it wondering where to go next with a view to reflecting more deeply on each item in the article.

Today my attention, once again, was caught by a mixture of safety and quality. Or maybe it is simply one of lack of understanding. A local wholesaler listed information for Cinnamon essential oil. This time of year Cinnamon for me is a boon because it helps me keep feet and hands warm in conjunction with Clove, Ginger, Rose and Sweet Orange. But that was not the issue. Another reader of the post asked about cold sores. My recipe for a suitable balm includes Melissa essential oil. The leaves only contain about 0.4% essential oil and consequently it is very expensive. I know that dilutions of Melissa in a carrier oil are available – not from the wholesaler who had posted I must add – and mentioned this. The wholesaler then mentioned that they carrier Melissa blend.

Melissa officinalis

Yes, I checked their website. The blend they carry is of fractionated essential oils. It may smell like Melissa but it won’t give you the same results from an aromatherapy – or for that matter spiritual or magical – point of view.

I also spotted that the same outlet is selling Fragrance oil as essential oil. Grr!

I resisted the temptation to pick them up on this in a public forum. I have yet to decide what I will do.

Why is this an issue?

Well firstly from my point of view it is potentially unsafe. It shows lack of understanding and knowledge or possibly even a lack of honesty. In view of the nature of the website I suspect the former rather than the latter.

It also means that people purchasing these products in good faith are not getting what they are hoping for. For some of the fragrance oils if unwittingly substituted for an essential oil and applied to the skin this could result in a nasty reaction  and potential damage.

Seeing this on a website always makes me wonder whether we would be better off insisting that only those with an aromatherapy or suitable other qualification should retail essential oils.

While this may seemingly reduce access it could mean that retailers could be trusted and would be knowledgeable and able to suggest alternatives if necessary. Purchasers could be sure that they were buying what they need.

It’s a tricky one I think but underlines the need to do some research and only buy from trusted suppliers with whom you can build a relationship.

Mini rant over!

Until the next time

Amy

xxx

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