What is Aromatherapy?
In the thousands of years it’s been around, we’ve had plenty of time to study the amazing benefits of aromatherapy. Aromatherapy is the practice of using natural plant concentrates (essential oils) to heal the mind, body, and spirit. It is a holistic treatment that promotes both mental and emotional health through aromas. Smell is a powerful human sense that is directly linked to our emotions – think about how the scent of a certain perfume can provoke warm, happy memories of your mother wearing it every day during your childhood.
And the effects of smell are not just mental: breathing in strong aromas from essential oils can physically influence the nervous system, breath rate, heartbeat, and blood pressure. Aromatherapy utilizes the sense of smell to reduce feelings of stress, anxiety, and tension. The practice can help put you into a feeling-state of peace and calm. And when the mind is relaxed, the body is better able to direct energy to heal itself physically. Aromatherapy has been used to improve insomnia, manage pain, soothe muscle and joint aches, treat migraines and tension headaches, settle digestion, and fight off infections.
How is Aromatherapy Used for Skin Care?
The use of essential oils is not limited to inhaling their powerful fragrances – these concentrated plant compounds are packed full of antioxidative, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties that can be used to promote skin health. In fact, plants themselves use their own essential oils to fight off infections, heal wounds, control humidity, manipulate hormones, and attract or repel other life forms. In humans, topical application of essential oils could aid in improving or preventing the following:
- Free radical damage;
- Sun damage;
- Age spots;
- Dry skin; and
How Can I Start Using Aromatherapy?
If you are interested in trying aromatherapy, here are some tips on how to get started:
- Essential oils are not regulated by the FDA, which means you need to conduct your own research into products. Only choose 100% natural oils from reputable producers – there should never be any synthetic ingredients or additives.
- Don’t apply essential oils directly to your skin. In their concentrated form, these natural plant extracts are volatile and could cause a skin reaction. Instead, choose a natural oil – like almond or olive – as a carrier oil.
- Do a skin patch test prior to full body or face use. If you have sensitive skin, acne, or allergies, essential oils may cause skin irritation.
- Always talk to your doctor before using aromatherapy if you are nursing or pregnant. Some essential oils are not safe for topical use during pregnancy.
Which Essential Oils Should I Use?
Your skin care goals can help you choose the oils you want to use. Here are just a few of our favorites:
- Lavender helps reduce inflammation, skin discolorations, and redness. It promotes collagen growth, speeds up wound healing, and makes skin look firmer and more youthful.
- Frankincense helps reduce the appearance of stretch marks, acne scars, wrinkles, and other skin marks. It also works as a natural toner to shrink the appearance of pores and even out skin tone.
- Ylang-ylang: Ylang-ylang aids in skin cell regeneration and oil production in the skin. It can help prevent acne breakouts caused by excess oil.
- Chamomile: Chamomile is best known for treating skin inflammation. It can help soothe redness and irritation from inflammatory skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis, contact dermatitis, rashes, and poison ivy.
- Carrot seed: Carrot seed is brimming with antioxidants that fight free radical damage. It rejuvenates and brightens dull skin.
- Peppermint: Peppermint is used on dry skin and chapped lips for its cooling, healing, and softening abilities.
At Ageless Allure Medispa, you can customize massages and facials to include aromatherapy. Essential oils will take your treatment to the next level by healing your skin while also relaxing your body and calming your mind. Contact us today at 863-292-2317 to schedule your next appointment.