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Essential Oil Facts Part 2

Essential Oils Part 2

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Alcohols

The types of alcohols that exist in essential oils typically end in -ol, and are less volatile than terpenes.  Alcohols can either be middle or base notes in scent.

The types of alcohols found generally have antibacterial and anti-fungal, while other properties can include uplifting/sedative, and some have analgesic and antispasmodic effects.  They are generally non-toxic

Common types of alcohols are linalool (lavender & basil), menthol(peppermint), and geraniol (rose, geranium, & coriander)

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Phenols

These also end in -ol, and are another alcohol derivative.  They do not evaporate very quickly and will frequently have a strong aroma. 

Phenols are warming and have great antiseptic, anti-bacterial and disinfectant qualities and also have greatly stimulating therapeutic qualities.

Essential oils high in phenols should be used with care.  They should be used in low concentration for short periods of time, as prolonged exposure can lead to toxicity, which puts strain on the liver.  

Common types are eugenol (clove & cinnamon), carvacrol (oregano, thyme & marjoram), thymol(thyme & oregano)

In this article I’m going to be telling you about 3 more components of essential oils.  

Alcohols

Aldehydes

Phenols

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Aldehydes

These will either end in -al or will have -aldehyde somewhere in their name.  Aldehydes are derived from primary alcohols, but tend to smell more strongly than their equivalent alcohol.  They are more volatile.  

Aldehydes have antibacterial, anti-fungal, disinfectant, and calming/sedative yet uplifting therapeutic qualities, and are the ingredients that impart the citrus like scent to melissa, lemongrass, and citronella..  

Aldehydes can be quite strong, and can cause irritation to skin and mucous membranes.  Essential oils high in aldehydes should be used in moderation.

Common types are cinnamaldehyde (cinnamon & cassia), geranial (melissa & lemongrass)

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That wraps up out this portion, please let me know if you have any questions in the comments below about anything!  I’ll answer what I can!!  Thanks so much!

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