Here at No Ordinary, we believe that the power and subconscious influence of aromatherapy is massively underestimated. It’s one of the many reasons we promote the use of quality essential oils in natural hair and skin care.
But what exactly is the practice of aromatherapy, what are the associated benefits, and why are essential oils such a valuable ingredient in natural hair care products?
What is aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is a holistic healing treatment that benefits the mind, body and spirit. It makes medicinal use of aromatic essential oils derived from nature to promote physical and emotional well-being.
Also known as essential oil therapy, the practice works through the two methods of sense of smell and skin absorption. Topical application products such as body oils and massage lotions allow the oils to be absorbed by the skin and work from the inside out, whilst items such as diffusers and bathing salts deliver benefits though aromatic scents.
The tradition of aromatherapy dates back thousands of years to ancient India, China and Egypt. These early civilisations valued the many benefits of natural plant extracts, blending them into oils, resins and balms used in both medical and religious practices. Throughout history, the methods of extraction have developed and now include processes such as cold press extraction and steam distillation. The benefits of essential oils have also gained increasing recognition in the scientific world, though they have been sadly overshadowed by the use of chemical drugs since the 19th century.
However, aromatherapy is still a widely used technique with multiple benefits that can help to harmonise and balance both the body and mind.
The benefits of aromatherapy
There are said to be around 100 types of essential oils, each with their own unique healing properties. Some of the most common include:
Peppermint – good for relieving headaches and digestive issues, reducing anxiety and alleviating irritated skin, as well as offering an energy boost.
Eucalyptus – used to reduce congestion and fever, fight germs, relieve muscle pain, stimulate the mind and body and boost the immune system.
Tea Tree – widely used to fight fungal infections such as athlete’s foot, reduce dandruff and treat acne.
Chamomile – good for digestive problems and fighting bacterial sores and acne, as well as its more commonly known relaxation and mood lifting properties.
Rosemary – thought to boost memory and mental clarity, as well as fighting anxiety, alleviating muscle pain, aiding digestion and healing skin problems.
Other popular essential oils include lavender, patchouli, lemon, frankincense, clove and cinnamon.
Whilst each oil can be used on its own for a specific result, the beauty of aromatherapy is that by combining essential oils to create a synergistic blend, even more benefits are created.
Essential oils in natural hair care
Topical treatment is used in aromatherapy as essential oils are easily absorbed by the skin, making massage oils, bath and skin care products the most popular methods of application. However, it is widely believed that areas such as the scalp, which is rich in hair follicles, absorb the oils more efficiently, making shampoos and conditioners some of the most effective carriers.
Then there’s the natural benefits that essential oils bring to the hair and scalp. We use a delicate balance of oils including lavender, rosemary, bergamot, mint and mandarin, the combinations of which encourage hair growth, provide natural moisture and nourishment and help to maintain a healthy scalp (you can read more about the benefits of each of No Ordinary ingredient here). These essential oils also have anti-fungal and antibacterial properties that help to keep the hair and scalp in optimum condition.
And of course, using shampoos and conditioners that contain essential oils in an aromatherapy double win. Not only are they absorbed effectively by the scalp, but the heat of the shower environment brings out the aromatic scents, further enhancing their healing properties. This makes aromatherapy a fantastic treatment not just for healthy hair and scalp, but for psychological well-being.
Aromatherapy do’s and don’ts
When using essential oils as part of your health care regime, it’s important to do so correctly. Never use them in pure form. Dilute them with a carrier oil such as coconut or almond, and always do a patch test to check for reactions. Never ingest essential oils orally. It’s also important to buy from a reputable producer to ensure your products are natural and free from any additives or synthetic ingredients.
Of course, the safest and most effective way to reap the benefits of aromatherapy is to use products crafted with care and precision. All the essential oils in No Ordinary have been chosen for both their physical and therapeutic benefits, with combinations designed for optimum results. They are also accredited by the Aromatherapy Trade Council ensuring products of the finest quality.
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