How to make an aroma-stick essential oil inhaler

Aroma-sticks are a practical, versatile,  and effective way to inhale essential oils and keep a blend on your person, ie in your pocket or bag.

You can find pre-blended inhalers on-line but it is very easy and cost-effective to make your own.

Inhalers are suitable for most people,but as with using essential oils on the skin you should check for contra-indications, especially for the young and elderly, during pregnancy, people suffering from asthma, epilepsy and other serious health conditions. Consult a professional Aromatherapist for advice. 

You can buy inhalers from various aromatherapy suppliers, including Purple Flame and Primrose Aromatherapy. If you buy in bulk they can cost about 50p each. They are a bit like a Vics inhaler, made of 3 plastic components with a cylindrical cotton wad that goes inside that you can add essential oils to. 

Firstly choose the essential oils you are going to use. You can use a single essential oil or a blend  (up to 5 different oils is generally enough). You need neat essential oils, not diluted in oil or anyother medium. I do not recommend fragrance oils as these have no therapeutic value.

The cotton piece will take up to 20 drops of essential oil. You will not necessarily need that many. Some essential oils have a very strong aroma or effect- ie roman chamomile, ylang ylang, vetiver, clary sage and you will only ever use a couple of drops along with lighter essential oils in a blend. 

As with all blends consider how much of each essential oil you want to use before you start. If you are unsure how your inhaler is going to smell you could always make a blend in vegetable oil in a bowl first to test it out.

Hold the cotton piece between your fingers or use a pair of tweezers. If you have sensitive skin it is worth wearing a pair of disposable gloves. 

Put a piece of protective covering underneath where you are working to prevent neat essential oils from staining or harming your work surface. 

Drop half the essential oils drop by drop from the bottle or use a pipette onto one end of the cotton cylinder and then the other. I often put lighter oils at one end of the stick and heavier oils at the other. You can choose which end will be put closest to the nose.

The lighter the essential oil  – ie lemon, eucalyptus etc the quicker it will disperse into the air. The heavier oils, ie sandalwood, patchouli will last longer.

Put the cotton wad inside the inner part of the plastic inhaler (the bit with the holes at one end), and seal the bottom with the little plastic cap.

Screw on the top. Easy as that. Keep the inhaler closed tightly to allow the aroma to last as long as possible. How long it will last will depend on the essential oils used and how often you open it.

To use an aroma-stick inhaler unscrew the cover and hold the inhaler under the nostrils for a or gently insert into one nostril with the other closed. Breathe in slowly and deeply for a couple of breaths in through the nose and out through the mouth. Using little and often will be most effective. 

For more tips on Aromatherapy and Natural Health follow Louise on twitter @VitalityAroma or like her facebook page VitalityHealthandWellbeing


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