Introduction to Aromatherapy

Healing with Essential Oils

A Self Directed Home Study Course on the Use of
Plant Aromatics for Health and Well-being

By KG Stiles, BA, LMT, CBT, CBP
Certified Clinical Aromatherapist

Lesson 4: Language of Aroma – Let Your Nose Guide You!

“Live according to your highest light and more light will be given.” ~Peace Pilgrim

Topics at a Glance
MOVIE: Language of Aroma – 18 Classifications of Aroma, Aromatic Plant Images & Methods of Distillation.
Eighteen (8) Classifications of Essential Oils by Aroma
YOUR ASSIGNMENT: Aroma Soul Journey ‘Be Happy Now’ guided empowerment meditation MP3 podcast and/or experience one or more aroma classification(s). Distillation Methods

MOVIE: Language of Aroma – 18 Classifications of Aroma & Plant Images.

Click play button below to watch video

Photo Credit: Public Domain Images and Wiki Creative Commons GNU Free License as noted for each image.

THE LANGUAGE OF AROMA – Let Your Nose Guide You!

Essential oils are known for promoting a broad spectrum of therapeutic applications and results according to their particular chemical properties, but are also most especially enjoyed for their unique aromatic qualities. Your sense of smell is considered by many authorities to be the most powerful of your five senses. Aroma touches and affects you at deep and profound levels of your being and influences your other sense perceptions.

Like the finest wines pure unadulterated essential oils can be appreciated and enjoyed for their distinctive aromatic quality and character. The discriminating aroma enthusiast will always look for the classic telltale signs of a premium grade pure essential oil.

As previously outlined minimal requirements should include: the Generic name of the essential oil, its botanical species, which part of the plant produced the oil, the method of extraction that was used, and where the oil was produced.

EXAMPLE: lavender, Lavendula angustifolia, flowers, steam distillation, Italy High Altitude

Along with these minimal requirements the discriminating buyer should also require that a pure essential oil be either certified organic or organically grown and tested for purity by GC/MS analysis.

When purchasing essential oils for unsurpassed therapeutic results, as well as for sensual pleasure, it is worth taking time to learn the distinctive aroma classifications that give an essential oil its unique character and quality.

Fine Distinctions of Aroma Qualities – 18 Classifications

BALSAMIC – a peaceful and grounding aroma that’s sweet, soft, and rich.

Essential oils with a Balsamic aroma include:

Black Spruce – Picea Mariana
Cedarwood, Atlas – Cedrus atlantica
Cedarwood, Himalayan – Cedrus deodora
Coriander – Coriandrum sativum
Cypress – Cupressus sempervirens
Fennel, Bitter – Foeniculum vulgare
Frankincense – Boswellia fereana
Helichrysum – Helichrysum italicum ssp serotinum
Juniper Berry – Juniperus communis
Sweet Marjoram – Origanum marjorana
Myrrh – Commiphora myrrha
Ravensara – Ravinsara aromatica
Rosemary, Cineole – Rosmarinus officinalis ct cineole
Sandalwood, East Indian – Santalum album (endangered)
Ylang Ylang III – Cananga odorata
Vetiver – vetiveria zizanoides

CAMPHORACEOUS – cool, fresh, penetrating aromas that open and clear the respiratory system and stimulate healing. A natural alternative to vapor rubs for colds and flu.

Essential oils with a Camphoraceous aroma

Blue Tansy – Tanacetum anuum
Eucalyptus Globulus – Eucalyptus globulus
Sweet Marjoram – Origanum marjorana
Rosemary – Rosmarinus officinalis
Tea Tree (Australia) – Melaleuca alternifolia
Yarrow – Achillea millefolium

CITRUS – fresh, vibrant and tart aromas that are like a burst of bright sunshine.

Essential oils with a Citrus aroma include:

Bergamot – Citrus bergamia
Grapefruit – Citrus paradisi
Lemon – Citrus limon
Neroli – Citrus aurantium
Petitgrain – Citrus aurantifolia
Orange – Citrus sinensis

EARTHY – grounding, stabilizing, and enduring aromas that are sweet, rich and deep, excellent perfume oils.

Essential oils with an Earthy aroma include:

Patchouli – Pogostemon patchouli
Sandalwood, East Indian – Santalum album
Spikenard – Nardostachys jatamansi
Valerian – Valeriana officinalis
Vetiver – Vetiveria zizanoides

EXOTIC & SENSUAL – warm, sweet, spicy, intoxicating aromas that hypnotize the senses.

Essential oils with an Exotic & Sensual aroma include:

Geranium – Pelargonium graveolens
Neroli – Citrus aurantium
Patchouli – Pogostemon patchouli & Pogostemon cablin
Petitgrain – Citrus aurantifolia
Rose Geranium – Pelargonium roseum
Rose otto – Rosa damacen
Spikenard – Nardostachys jatamansi
Vetiver – Vetiveria zizanoides
Ylang Ylang III – Cananga odorata

FLORAL – sweet, fresh flowery scents, heady to delicate and subtle in aroma.

Essential oils with a Floral aroma include:

Geranium – Pelargonium graveolens
Lavender – Lavandula angustifolia
Neroli – Citrus aurantium
Rose Geranium – Pelargonium roseum
Rose otto – Rosa damacena
Ylang Ylang III – Cananga odorata

FRESH – vibrant, crisp, clean aromas that clear the mind and renew the senses.

Essential oils with a Fresh aroma include:

Celery Seed – Apium graveolens
Cypress – Cupressus sempervirens
Eucalyptus Globulus – Eucalyptus globulus
Geranium – Pelargonium graveolens
Grapefruit – Citrus paradisi
Helichrysum (Corsica) – Helichrysum italicum
Lavender – Lavandula angustifolia
Lemon – Citrus limonum>br> Lemongrass – Cymbopogon citratus
Sweet Marjoram – Origanum marjorana
Orange – Citrus sinensis
Peppermint – Mentha x piperita
Petitgrain – Citrus aurantifolia
Rose Geranium – Pelargonium roseum
Rose otto – Rosa damacena
Rosemary verbenone – Rosmarinus officinalis
Tea Tree (Australia) – Melaleuca alternifolia
Thyme – Thymus vulgaris L.

FRUITY – refreshing, tangy, sweet, vibrant & sharp aromas, uplift your senses.

Essential oils with a Fruity aroma include:

Blue Tansy – Tanacetum anuum
Chamomile, Roman – Athemis nobilis
Grapefruit – Citrus paradisi
Lemon – Citrus limonum
Orange – Citrus sinensis

HERBACEOUS – a garden of country fresh herbs to flavor your foods and scent your home.

Essential oils with an Herbaceous aroma include:

Blue Tansy – Tanacetum anuum
Carrot Seed – Daucus carota
Chamomile, German – Matricaria recutita
Fennel – Foeniculum vulgare
Helichrysum – Helichrysum italicum
Lavender – Lavandula angustifolia
Lemongrass – Cymbopogon citratus
Sweet Marjoram – Origanum marjorana
Petitgrain – Citrus aurantifolia
Rosemary – Rosmarinus officinalis
Tea Tree (Australia) – Melaleuca alternifolia
Thyme – Thymus vulgaris L.
Valerian – Valerian officinalis
Yarrow – Achillea millefolium

LEMONY – positive, fresh, uplifting aromas that feel like bright summer sunshine.

Essential oils with a Lemony aroma include:

Lemon – Citrus limonum
Lemongrass – Cymbopogon citratus
Lemon Tea Tree – Leptospermum petersonii

MINTY – energizing, fresh, cool, penetrating aromas that relieve belly, head or body aches.

Essential oils with a Minty aroma include:

Peppermint – Mentha piperita
Spearmint – Mentha spicata

PINEY – sharp, fresh, clean scents that open and clear, calm and restore breathing.

Essential oils with a Piney aroma include:

Black Spruce – Picea mariana
Cypress – Cupressus sempervirens
Juniper berry – Juniperus communis
Pine – Pinus sylvestris

RESINOUS – beautifully deep, earthy aromas that ground and support.

Essential oils with a Resinous aroma include:

Frankincense – Boswellia fereana
Myrrh – Commiphora myrrha
Patchouli – Pogostemom cablin
Sandalwood, East Indian – Santalum album
Spikenard – Nardostachys jatamansi

ROSY – a fresh rose aroma that nourishes the feminine spirit, a heart essence.

Essential oils with a Rosy aroma include:

Rose Geranium Pelargonium roseum
Rose otto – Rosa damacena

SPICY – a passionate and fiery aroma that inspires dreams of distant and exotic lands.

Essential oils with a Spicy aroma include:

Sweet Basil – Ocimum basilicum ct linalool
Black Pepper – Piper nigrum
Celery Seed – Apium graveolens
Clove Bud – Eugenia Caryophyllata
Fennel – Foeniculum vulgare
Ginger – Zingiber officinale
Myrrh – Commiphora myrrha
Thyme – Thymus vulgaris L.

SWEET – pleasing and familiar aromas that comfort and soothe.

Essential oils with a Sweet aroma include:

Sweet Basil – Ocimum basilicum ct linalool
Bergamot – Citrus bergamia
Blue Tansy – Tanacetum anuum
Carrot Seed – Daucus carota
Cedarwood, Atlas – Cedrus atlantica
Cedarwood, Himalayan – Cedrus deodora
Celery Seed – Apium graveolens
Chamomile, German – Matricaria recutita
Chamomile, Roman – Athemis nobilis
Clove Bud – Eugenia Caryophyllata
Cypress – Cupressus sempervirens
Fennel – Foeniculum vulgare
Rose Geranium – Pelargonium roseum
Geranium – Pelargonium graveolens
Ginger – Zingiber officinale
Lavender – Lavandula augustifolia
Lemon – Citrus limonum
Sweet Marjoram – Origanum marjorana
Neroli – Citrus aurantium var. amara
Orange – Citrus sinensis
Patchouli – Pogostemom cablin
Petitgrain – Citrus aurantifolia
Rose otto – Rosa damacena
Sandalwood, East Indian – Santalum album
Spikenard – Nardostachys jatamansi
Vetiver – Vetiveria zizanoides
Ylang Ylang III – Cananga odorata

WARM – RADIANT – PENETRATING – soothing aromas that warm the senses.

Essential oils with a Warm, Radiant & Penetrating aroma include:

Black Pepper – Piper nigrum
Celery Seed – Apium graveolens
Clove Bud – Eugenia Caryophyllata
Fennel – Foeniculum vulgare
Ginger – Zingiber officinale
Helichrysum – Helichrysum italicum
Juniper berry – Juniperus communis
Sweet Marjoram – Origanum marjorana
Myrrh – Commiphora myrrha
Patchouli – Pogostemom cablin
Petitgrain – Citrus aurantifolia
Sandalwood, East Indian – Santalum album
Spikenard – Nardostachys jatamansi
Thyme – Thymus vulgaris L.
Valerian – Valeriana officinalis
Yarrow – Achillea millefolium

WOODY – Reminiscent of fresh cut wood. Like a walk in nature woody aromas calm, reassure and ground the senses.

Essential oils with a Woody aroma include:

Cedarwood, Atlas – Cedrus atlantica
Cedarwood, Himalayan – Cedrus deodora
Black Spruce – Picea Communis
Cypress – Cupressus sempervirens
Juniper berry – Juniperus communis
Sweet Marjoram – Origanum marjorana
Patchouli – Pogostemom cablin
Sandalwood, East Indian – Santalum album
Spikenard – Nardostachys jatamansi
Vetiver – Vetiveria zizanoides

YOUR ASSIGNMENT: Enjoy Aroma Soul Journey ‘Be Happy Now’ guided empowerment meditation mp3 podcast (click below to play or download, right click and ‘save target as’ for PC)and/or experience one or more of the essential oils in the 18 aroma classification(s). You will have an opportunity to use the aroma classifications in creating your aromatherapy healing blends, so with practice, you will come to know them very well.

NOTE IN YOUR AROMATHERAPY JOURNAL the aroma qualities you can discern, and the effect the oil(s) on your body, mind, spirit and emotions.

DISTILLATION METHODS:

The vast majority of true essential oils are produced by distillation. There are different processes of distillation used. In all of them, water is heated to produce steam, which acts to carry the most volatile chemicals of the aromatic material. The steam is cooled in a condenser, and the resulting distillate is collected. The essential oil floats on top of the Hydrosol (the distilled waters collected through distillation) and may be separated off.

THREE METHODS OF DISTILLATION. Every essential oil botanical plant source has its own best method for distillation.

1. Hydrodistillation

This is the most ancient distillation method in which the botanicals are fully submerged in water, producing a “soup”, the steam of which contains the aromatic plant molecules. This is the most versatile, and the method most often used in third world countries. The risk is that the still can run dry, or be overheated, burning the aromatics and resulting in an EO with a burnt smell. Hydrodistillation seems to work best for powders, i.e. spice powders, ground wood, etc. and very tough materials like roots, wood, or nuts.

2. Steam distillation

Steam distillation can be compared to a kitchen steamer basket, with the botanicals supported in a “basket” over boiling water, exposing the plant material only to the rising steam vapors. This is the best method for distilling leafy materials, but doesn’t work well for woods, roots, seeds, etc. Steam distillation uses an outside source of steam which channels the steam into the distillation unit, sometimes at high pressure. The steam passes through the aromatic material, and exits for collection into the condenser.

3. Hydrodiffusion

With this technique the steam is applied on top of the botanicals instead of up from beneath the plant material. Hydrodiffusion works by osmotic action of steam at low pressures. Condenser coils beneath the plant materials act to separate the oil and water in the usual way.

OTHER METHODS of obtaining essential oils from a botanical plant source include the following:

Dry Distillation

Dry Distillation is carried out in the absence of air to form odorous compounds from non odorous raw materials and is used for tars like pine and juniper.

Solvent Extraction Absolutes and Concretes:

Very delicate aromatics like Jasmine, and Tuberose can not survive the distillation process, so their intoxicating aromas are captured through a process of solvent extraction. An extracting unit is loaded with perforated trays of flower blossoms. The blossoms are washed repeatedly with a solvent, usually hexane. The solvent dissolves all extractable matter from the plant which includes non-aromatic waxes, pigments and highly volatile aromatic molecules. The solution containing both solvent and dissolvable plant material is filtered and the filtered plant material is then subjected to low pressure distillation to recover the solvent for further use. The remaining waxy mass is called the concrete which contains as much as 55% of the volatile oil.

The concentrated concretes are processed further to remove the waxy materials which dilute the pure essential oil. To prepare the absolute from the concrete, the waxy concrete is warmed and stirred with alcohol, usually ethanol. During the heating and stirring process the concrete breaks up into minute globules. Along with the aromatic molecules a certain amount of wax also becomes dissolved. Most of this wax is removed by agitating and freezing the solution at very low temperatures (around -30 degrees F). Finally the purified solution is cold filtered leaving only the wax-free material, the absolute.

This solvent extraction process yields three usable products; 1) the concrete, 2) the absolutes, and 3) the floral waxes, for addition to candles, thickening creams and lotions, and as a softly floral scented alternative to beeswax.

Carbon Dioxide Extraction

When CO2 (carbon dioxide) is subjected to high pressure, the gas turns into a liquid. This liquid CO2 can be used as a very inert, safe, “liquid solvent” which will extract the aromatic molecules in a process similar to that used to extract absolutes. The advantage is that no solvent residue remains, since at normal pressure and temperature, the CO2 simply reverts to a gas and evaporates. CO2 extraction has given us essences of some aromatics that don’t yield essential oils like Rose Hip Seed, and Calendula. The CO2 extraction has a richer, more intense, full aroma, since more of the plant aromatic chemicals are released through the process, and may have tiny bits of plant botanical in the oil.

Cold Pressing

Citrus essential oils are released by cold pressing the skin of the fruit by machines which press the rind and capture the resulting oil. Citrus oils may also be produced by steam distillation though they lack the vibrancy of cold pressed oils.

Florasols/Phytols

This extraction method uses a new type of benign gaseous solvents. In the late 1980s Dr. Peter Wilde first recognized the unique properties of these solvents for the extraction of aromatic oils and biologically active components from plant materials, for use in the food, pharmaceutical, aromatherapy and perfume industries. “Florasol” is the solvent upon which the process is based.

Extraction occurs at or below ambient temperatures, thus there is no thermal (heat) degradation of the final product. This extraction process utilizes the selectivity of the solvent and produces a free flowing clear oil free of waxes.

________________________________________________________________________

In your next class five (5) you will learn the basics of formulating essential oil blends and be guided step-by-step exactly how to formulate and use your own aromatherapy product(s), including for your own personal skin care, as well as create your own perfume oil. You’ll also be introduced to the emotional healing oils of the Sesquiterpene Chemical Family. Sesquiterpenes represent the Archetype of the Wise Elders & Compassionate Ones: Grandparents, Guardians and Teachers. It’s associated Elemental Power acts to soothe, ground and comfort you. Look forward to sharing more practical wisdom about aromatherapy with you next week. Until then enjoy your journey!

PLEASE NOTE: Holistic Mind Body therapies, including Aromatherapy and Energy Healing can produce satisfying results where other methods have failed. Please consult with your physician regarding serious health concerns and do not attempt to self diagnose.

css.php