How Essential Oils are Made

How Essential Oils are Made

essential oil still
The following article is an excerpt from the book – ESSENTIAL OILS AND AROMATHERAPY: HOW TO USE ESSENTIAL OILS FOR BEAUTY, HEALTH, AND SPIRITUALITY by Gregory Lee White. Available on Amazon in print edition and on Kindle.

Many of the most common essential oils are steam distilled. It is the same process you see in the movies of people making moonshine. Sometimes the big copper coil and all are used. The plant matter, which may consist of flowers, roots, leaves, and more, is placed in the distillation apparatus with water (also known as an alembic vessel or simply a “still”) where the water and plant matter are heated. The plant material releases aromatic material as the steam forces the essential oils in the plants to burst open and escape, evaporating into the steam. The temperature of the steam is carefully controlled – just enough to force the plant material to let go of the essential oil, yet not so hot it would burn the plant material or the essential oil.

The steam containing the essential oils passes through a cooling chamber, causing condensation. The collecting tube is often coiled and is housed within an outer container through which the cool water flows. This allows the fluid to condense and drip into the collector. In the collector, the essential oil separates from the hydrosol or aqueous portion. Distillation may take anywhere from a couple of hours to nearly twenty hours, depending on the plant matter being distilled.

This is where hydrosols come from. They are literally the water used in the distillation process.

This is also known as cold pressing. Most citrus peel oils are expressed mechanically, or cold pressed (similar to olive oil extraction). Due to the relatively large quantities of oil in citrus peel and low cost to grow and harvest raw materials, citrus-fruit oils are cheaper than most other essential oils. You can actually squeeze essential oil out when you peel an orange or a lemon. No heat source is needed for this extraction method, which is why it is called “cold pressing.” While today large machines do all the pressing, in early times the rinds were hand squeezed onto sponges in order to collect the precious oils.

This is an older method not frequently used today. In cold enfleurage, a large framed plate of glass, called a chassis, smeared with a layer of animal fat (usually lard or tallow) is allowed to set. Most oils collected with this method are flowers. Petals or whole flowers placed on the fat diffuse their scent into the fat over the course of 1-3 days. The spent flowers are replaced with fresh ones until the fat has reached a desired degree of fragrance. This procedure was developed in southern France in the 19th century for the production of high-grade concentrates. In hot enfleurage, solid fats are heated and botanical matter stirred into the fat. Spent botanicals are repeatedly strained from the fat and replaced with fresh material until the fat is saturated with fragrance. This method is the oldest known procedure for preserving plant fragrance substances. Jasmine was commonly a popular flower that went through the enfleurage process.

Solvent extracted is almost exactly how it sounds. This is how absolutes are made. Flowers are covered with a solvent (hexane, for example) which extracts the essential oil from the flowers/plants. Solvent extraction does not always have to mean the solvent was unnatural. Sometimes solid oils, fats, or carbon dioxide are used (think high-tech-enfleurage). The primary reason for using this method is for flowers that are too delicate to be steam distilled. Jasmine Absolute is made using the solvent extraction method.

There have been many times over the years that I have encountered people that tell me they make their own essential oils. I immediately ask them if they own a farm, because distilling essential oils takes an enormous amount of plant matter. When the answer is no, I ask them about the process – only to find that they are actually making infused oils. I can remember back many years ago when I tried this and thought I was making my own essential oils. I took the peel of several oranges and packed a canning jar full then poured sweet almond oil over the peels, capped it, and allowed it to sit for two weeks. The result was sweet, orange-smelling oil. However, when I purchased my first essential oil book some weeks later I discovered that my jar of citrusy oil was far from being an actual essential oil. This is how we learn: experimentation and research.

Infused oils involve taking plants and allowing them to soak in carrier oil, usually a liquid vegetable oil, for an extended period, giving the plant time to release its properties into the base. Most of the time, the method is to leave the jar sitting in the sunlight (such as a windowsill) so that the carrier oil will be heated gently and naturally, which encourages the plant matter to release more of its precious oils.
While it may not be an essential oil, this is still an excellent way to make your own herbal-based massage oils. The key to success is absolutely cleanliness. The jars should first be sterilized (a dishwasher will do) then thoroughly dried. There should be absolutely no water, not even a drop, left inside your glass jar because water will be the foundation for the growth of bacteria.

If using fresh herbs from your garden, wash them to get rid of any dirt or bugs, and allow them to dry completely. I don’t mean turning them into a dried herb – just the process of getting all water off of the plant. If this means putting your project off until the next day, so be it. Knowing this, you may want to cut your plants and rinse them the day before you plan your infusion project. You can speed up the process by blotting the plants with paper towels.
When your plants/herbs are completely dry, you want to bruise them – meaning, you’re going to pinch or rub the leaves slightly to help bring some of the essential oils out. Some people go a step further and chop the herbs. Then, pack your jar at least half-way with the herb (almost all the way to the top is best) and cover with your carrier oil. Fill the jar with oil as far as you can. Leaving a lot of airspace at the top gives more chance for mold to occur.
Olive oil is a popular choice but many people also choose: canola oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, or even common vegetable oil. You may also use more exotic oils, such as sweet almond or grapeseed oil. Just be sure not to choose oils that become rancid easily, especially if you are going to place your infusion in a sunny windowsill.
Cap the jar tightly and gently shake or swirl the contents each day.

I never use the sunlight method when I infuse oils. I prefer to place the jars in a dark, room-temperature spot for about two weeks. There are many who feel that the addition of sunlight does more harm than good to the integrity of your base oil. Furthermore, the sunlight and heat can cause condensation in the jar. Usually, the darkroom method will give you a lighter colored finished product.

After the herbs have steeped for a few weeks, strain the contents through cheesecloth several times so that no plant matter remains in the carrier oil. Bottle and store away from light. The product should be good for at least six months, although I have seen some infused oils last for a couple of years. At this point, you may also choose to add vitamin E to the oil by breaking open several capsules and spilling their contents into your infused oil, which will help with rancidity. If you have chosen oils that tend to go rancid more quickly than others do, you may choose to store your finished product in the refrigerator.

Where to buy essential oils in Nashville

Where To Buy Essential Oils in Nashville TN

Our aromatherapy shop has the largest variety of essential oils in Nashville carrying over sixty different essential oils. We purchase our essential oils in bulk from reputable suppliers who buy directly from the farms that harvest the plants and distill the oils. When they arrive to us, we bottle them in half ounce bottle and place our oil resistant aromagregory labels.affordable pure essential oils

This is why our essential oils are more affordable than other companies. We do not multi level market our oils, so there is no need to inflate the prices in order to profit. The oils are made around the world, shipped to our supplier, shipped straight to our Nashville workshop, then head right over to the shelves in our Nashville store.

For example, our lavender oil is only $11.00 per bottle. Eucalyptus is just $7.50. Peppermint is only $9.00

In the past few years, we have expanded our line to over 100 different essential oils and blends. We also carry a full line of essential oil diffusers, carrying cases, aromatherapy lockets, and empty bottles for your own aromatherapy creations.

Co-Owner, Gregory White, is the author of ESSENTIAL OILS AND AROMATHERAPY: HOW TO USE ESSENTIAL OILS FOR BEAUTY, HEALTH, AND SPIRITUALITY. Owners, Gregory White and Roy Hamilton, are both certified aromatherapists and the company, aromaG’s Botanica – the aromagregory co.  is a business member of NAHA (the National Association of Holistic Aromatherapy).

Our store is also a soap shop, tea and herb shop, and a full metaphysical shop. Store hours are: aromaG’s Botanica – the aromagregory co.

615-360-8089 (retail store phone)
Store Location:
223 Donelson Pike, Nashville, TN 37214
Mon – Saturday 10 – 7:00
Sundays 12 – 7:00

Driving directions found at the bottom of every page on our website.

come by our store, located in the Donelson area of Nashville, for all your essential oil and aromatherapy needs. We’re always excited to talk about aromatherapy!

Essential Oil and Aromatherapy book


Essential Oil and Aromatherapy book

Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: How to Use Essential Oils for Beauty, Health, and Spirituality is written in a personable and easy to understand style and covers all of the important aspects of aromatherapy and essential oils. Reads like a conversation instead of a text book. Authored by a professional aromatherapist, it includes the history of aromatherapy, how to use the oils, the chemistry of essential oils, how to create a balanced blend, how essential oils are made, the carrier oils used in blends, scent notes, a few questionable aspects of the industry, recipes to get you started, and a complete encyclopedia of the top fifty-five oils.

The essential oil guide (encyclopedia) covers fifty-five of the most-used essential oils with detailed information about each oil including: botanical name, aromatic profile, origin, perfumery note, extraction method, description of the essential oil, safety warnings, and each oils uses and benefits for the mind, the body, and the spirit.

Added bonus rarely found in essential oils books: step by step directions showing how a professional aromatherapist creates a blend for a client based on their ailments, symptoms, medical history, emotions, and personal preferences. Sample Case Study included.

White Willow Books
ISBN-13: 978-0615858104
ISBN-10: 0615858104

BUY NOW ON AMAZON – Print Edition

In days gone by, mentors taught their families, neighbors, and others interested in the arts of natural healing, as they were taught by their own mentors. Too much of that is lost these days in favor of science and academia. Essential Oils and Aromatherapy brings back that feeling of having a mentor as the author’s writing style is such that it feels like he’s in the room sharing his experience with me as he guides me in increasing my knowledge about essential oils. This very comprehensive volume covers fifty different oils in great depth, but in an easy to understand format.

It’s a great source of information, whether you are just beginning to have an interest in essential oils or aromatherapy, or if you have moderate to advanced knowledge of the subject, but would enjoy a handy fingertip reference to double check contraindications, applications, or other facts about essential oils. Recipes and sample forms make it ideal for the budding aromatherapist. It is likewise a valuable resource for the essential oil hobbyist.

I was particularly interested in the section on scents and perfumery; reading it gave me a much better idea of ways to keep my home smelling fresh and inviting.

I enjoyed the opportunity to read an advanced copy and can hardily recommend this book to anyone who wants to expand their knowledge of essential oils, use them in their every day life personally, or who feel a calling to the healing arts of aromatherapy.

Perhaps the most useful section of this book to me is the essential oil guide — an encyclopedic section that alphabetically lists each essential oil and gives both its common and botanical names. Citing its place of origin, method of extraction, and perfumery note, this section alone makes this book a required part of any soap maker’s library. Already this has become a text that I refer back to each time down to make up a new recipe that includes essential oils. White’s conversational tone makes this section accessible and memorable: he explains each oil’s healing qualities and any precautions in using it as well as a brief, interesting summary of its history and lore.

White’s professional and educational background in aromatherapy gives him an insider’s knowledge into the industry which he shares. In reading this book, you’ll learn how to read the labels and often trademarked levels of “certification” that essential oil sellers use in order to market their products. This book helps its readers to become smarter consumers and, in turn, better crafts people.

New soap packaging

we have finally come up with a retail packaging for the soap bars that we are happy with. Each bar is shrink wrapped with the ends left open for smelling. The label is glossy white – something I’d been looking for for a long time in the right size.

can now forego the baskets of soap and line up the bars on the shelf. This gives us the room to display five types of soap per shelf where, before, only three baskets would fit.image

natural soap nashville flea market

nashville flea marketWe were permanent vendors at the Nashville Flea Market for almost three years before opening our store. Once the store opened and we shared in the weekend duties of running a retail shop, attending the flea market was no longer possible. Also, our girls were younger then and it sometimes interfered with our weekends with them.

But now, over five years later, we’re happy to announce they we are returning to the Nashville Flea Market. By the way, the fairgrounds property is now renamed by Nashville Metro as: The Nashville Expo Center. The girls are all grown up, Roy has retired from his job with the State, and our schedule in the store has freed up the weekends.

Went shopping today for new fabric for tablecloths (vibrant purple this time) and bought a FOLDING six foot table since we no longer have the van we use to. Also, some great wooden box for carrying the bottles of essential oil to the market for sale. Lots of natural soap being made in the soap shop for the flea market, the store, and our wholesale customers.

Our booth is number 70 in the Agriculture Building, close to the Cafe. Hopefully, it will become our permanent space but it does take going consistently for a year for a vendor to have a permanent space.

Ordered the new banner for the table and booth and it should be on its way to us any day. Four feet wide and two-and-a-half feet tall. See pic below.
soap company banner

2013 Show Hours

Friday 8am–5pm
Saturday 7am–6pm
Sunday 7am–4pm

Friday 12noon–5pm
Saturday 7am–5pm
Sunday 7am–4pm

2013 Flea Market Dates

  • WinterFest January 25–26–27
  • Spring is in the Air February 22–23–24
  • Spring Fling March 22–23–24
  • Spring Extravaganza April 26–27–28
  • Summer Sneek a Peek May 24–25–26
  • Summer Fun June 21–22–23
  • Hot Swaps July 26–27–28
  • Back to School August 23–24–25
  • Fall Fest September 27–28–29
  • The Big One October 25–26–27
  • Holiday Preview November 22–23–24
  • Last Chance December 20–21–22

Two Men equals more soap, less stress

Roy has finally retired from his stress-laden job at the State of Tennessee after 28 years. We’ve been talking about it for years, planning for the day when we could work side by side in the company. Two men equals more soap production, faster turnaround times, and time to return to doing fairs, markets and special events. It is also the beginning of having more time to actually work on our vegetable garden, take day trips when the mood strikes, or have a coffee shop office day.

Of course, he’s also working out in our home studio where he takes clients for Reiki and Shamanic healing sessions. His website for sessions is

It’s nice to throw away the alarm clock and wake up naturally. No more ironing of work clothes that require ties and stiff shoes. Today is one of those coffee shop office days at Bongo Java in Nashville, TN across from Belmont.

Making Soap Book Now on Sale

soap making bookI’ve been working for the past several months revamping my book MAKING SOAP FROM SCRATCH. I listened closely to all of the reviews I read and also the direct feedback from readers. From their feedback, I included all the things that readers/reviewers felt were missing from the first edition: more instructions on STANDARD soap making, more recipes for standard soap making, how to swirl colors in soap, how to sell soap, how to cut and cure soap, how to set up a booth at a craft fair or market.

The original “Bubbles and Bull” section where I described past business relations that went south has been greatly edited to only two stories, leaving more room for soap talk and soap recipes. The second edition also includes a section for those who wanted a few recipes using animal fats.

Reading the negative reviews of other soap making books helped me in the editing process because it showed me the things that people complained about in ALL soap making books. In other words, what were the things they wanted to see or learn about but did not? One specific complaint was the overuse of expensive ingredients. I have to say that I made the recipes fifty-fifty. There is an even split of the luxurious and the very affordable.


Print Edition on Amazon $11.95 

Kindle Edition on Amazon $3.99

Nook Edition on Barnes & Noble $3.99

Cheap essential oils and poor service

A customer came into our Nashville store the other day to buy essential oils of lavender, rosemary, and tea tree. But when she saw the price of our lavender (it is only $11.00) she said, “oh, it was cheaper at X”  And, no, I’m not going to mention who X is. But I do know who X is.

The thing is, X opened a business in Nashville a few years ago with the idea of seeking out local vendors who were experts in their field – a way to fill their wellness store with the best local products available.  They started carrying our line of essential oils from their very beginning. But after a year or so, they no longer ordered them.  The next time we dropped in, we found they were bottling the oils themselves.

Fine. But the thing is, you could tell it was being done only in the name of profit – not for quality and for the sake of having a knowledgeable supplier.  The labels were cheap Avery labels and not very professional looking on top of that (an some crooked).  Our aromagregory essential oil labels are waterproof and oil-proof – you will still be able to read the label 2 years from now.

Furthermore, they mixed in fragrance oils among the essential oils.  This only confuses the buyer when they do not know the difference in essential oils and fragrance oils.  Fragrance oils have NO aromatherapy value – there are simply chemicals.  These should be displayed on separate sides of the room or different rooms – not near displays marked aromatherapy. To make matters worse, I went to their website and looked at the price of their oils.  Under the “essential oils” section I found 1/2 ounce bottle of Chamomile for $7.00!  Oh, please.  WHOLESALE, the price of chamomile BEGINS at around $40 for Roman and $75 for German!  Then, I see a 1/2 bottle of rose oil on their website for $15.00!  Ok, here I have to call Bullspit! Rose oil WHOLESALE begins at $200 for the cheap Chinese rose oil and $700 for the good Bulgarian – that is PER OUNCE.

This is where aromatherapy and essentials oils get a bad name – when someone who is only trying to turn a quick buck sells them without having a knowledge of essential oils.  In other words, they cheapen them (and I don’t mean price-wise)

The customer in my store also told me that the girl helping her had to Google every essential oil she asked about.  Uugh!

Essential oils is what I do. I spent a great deal of money and time to become a C.C.A. (certified clinical aromatherapist). When customers come into our store or email questions, I don’t have to refer to a book or a search engine for the answer. Please, question your source for essential oils. It is better to pay $2 more for your bottle of lavender when you are dealing with an expert on essential oils instead of someone who knows none of the answers to your questions and who may or may not be selling you cheap fragrance or diluted essential oil.

Gregory White, C.C.A. where the essential oils are real and we KNOW what to do with them! Alright, rant over.

Green Pergola Soap

What happened to Green Pergola Soap and Aromatherapy Company?  We’re still right here with an old and new name – Aromagregory Creative Inc.

From 1999 to around 2003, our original company name was Aromagregory Botanicals.  When Gregory met Roy and they decided to work on the business together, they renamed the company Green Pergola.

In 2012 when we decided to incorporate, we reclaimed the name Aromagregory.  Why Aromagregory Creative Inc. ?  Simple – our soaps and bath products are not the only things we do. Gregory takes aromatherapy clients, does chakra alignments and readings. He also designs websites for other small businesses.  Besides being the chief candle maker, Roy is also a Reiki Master and performs shamanic healings.  So, the word “bath” or “botanicals” did not quite cover everything. Creative (the way we try to approach everything we do) did.

green pergola

Why ditch the Green Pergola name after having it for so long?  Well, for one reason, customers couldn’t remember the name.  They also reported back to us that they couldn’t find us on the web when they looked for Green PAGODA.  Also, it was a long, drawn-out speech about how we came up with the name.  Green was supposed to signify the need for more natural products.  A pergola (where vines grow up, across, and back down again was supposed to signify to growth of mind, body, and spirits by using more green (natural) products.

We did, however, maintain the dot com. When customers go to, they will land on the website.

So, Green Pergola and Aromagregory are the same company. The same people who started the company still make and ship out your soaps orders.

Greg and Roy

Homemade Soap

homemade soapHomemade soap means different things to different people – mainly defined by those who actually make home made soap.

For some soap makers, it means exactly what it says – it is a small batch of soap made in the home for personal use.

But I think it can mean much more than that. To me, homemade soap is a soap that is artisan crafted in small batches where careful attention is given to each recipe. To me, it must be made by hand – not by large machines where the ingredients are poured into giant drums.  That is definitely NOT home made!


So, does the soap have to made inside someone’s house to be called homemade?  Not necessarily. While it is true that our soap making operation moved out of our personal kitchen many years ago, it didn’t go that far. Around 2006 we purchased a soap making shop – one of those quaint barns that most people use for storing bicycles, old furniture, and Christmas ornaments. We then proceeded to insulate the entire barn, install drywall, counter tops, flooring, and electricity. In the picture below, our soap shop may not look very large but it is very well organized with work stations on either side, drying racks for the soaps, an oil melting station, and a shipping area. The barn lofts are great for store bottling and packaging.

home soap shopMy point is, our soap shop is still located at our home, just 15 feet from our back door right beyond our studio and the goldfish pond.  In front of the shop is our herb garden where there is: oregano, thyme, sage, Asiatic lilies, lavender, catmint, beebalm, yarrow, and green peppers.

To the side, you will see my hydrangea bushes on either side of the door.  In the summer months, there are hanging baskets of petunias and impatients. An old elm tree shades the soap shop, helping to keep in cooler during the summer months.  But, yes, there is air conditioning in the shop.  Soap needs the humidity pulled out of the air in order for it to dry and cure properly.

I went surfing the web trying to find other soap makers that made soap in barns or outdoor workshops but wasn’t very successful in finding any pictures.  I did, however, run across another soapmaker with the cutest little shop. Their store reminded me of an upscale version of our barn with the rustic appearance and the landscaping out front.  So, here’s a nod to Rosner Soap of Sugar Loaf, NY. Great looking shop!

Now, back to homemade soap. Just being made on our property isn’t the only factor in calling our soap homemade. It also has to do with the fact that it is made in small quantities – only 36 bars at a time, sometimes only 12 bars at a time. True, we may have to make soap more often than our competition but this attention to detail and quality makes me secure in the notion of calling our soap homemade.


Vegan Soap

We have been making vegan soap since 1999, completely by accident, I have to admit. I’d like to think it was some sort of inner voice that led us towards ingredients that made our soaps vegan and vegetarian friendly.

Out of the 27 natural soaps we make, 25 of them can be considered vegan soap. The other two are Garden Gate (which has honey added) and Oatmeal Milk and Honey (which includes powdered milk and honey). So, you might call all of our soaps, including those two, somewhat vegetarian friendly. At the current time, we are working on two more soaps that really focus on vegetables – a carrot soap and a tomato soap.

So how is a soap classified as vegan? For starters, we use absolutely no animal fats as the base. Our soapmaking oils consist of: olive oil, coconut, soybean and shea butter. They are scented with real essential oils from plants and the coloring comes from minerals. Unlike many soap makers who make it the norm, we do NOT include goats milk in our formula – just vegetable oils, essentials oils, herbs, roots, flowers and minerals.

Veganism is the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products. Ethical vegans reject the commodity status of animals and the use of animal products for any purpose, while dietary vegans (or strict vegetarians) eliminate them from their diet only. Read the full Wiki Vegan article here.

The sad thing is, I don’t think most vegans realize that they commercial soap they are using contains the fat from a cow. This is because the industry invented to word sodium tallowate (the mixing of sodium hydroxide with beef tallow) to disguise the UNanimal-friendly ingredient.  Who would know what this ingredient was unless someone told them.  So, a lot of vegans out there are buying cheap soap from the big box stores and have no clue that they are rubbing beef fat on their bodies every morning.  My mouth is curling up right now just thinking of how disgusting that sounds.

If you are interested in becoming vegan, there is a lot of interesting information and recipes found at

In the meantime, at least attempt it in the shower or bath by shopping our vegan soaps at

vegan soap

Young Living – DoTerra – Aromagregory essential oils

Time and time again I am faced with DoTerra or Young Living distributors who come into our shop and turn their noses up when they see the price of our essential oils.  I have spent the last 13 years (as of this writing) learning about, researching, handling and using essential oils.  I am a Certified Clinical Aromatherapist, having to learn not only about essential oils and their properties (as well as do case studies on actual clients) but also about anatomy, physiology and how essential oils interact with the anatomy.

The last time I encountered a DoTerra rep, I asked them, “Where did you learn about essential oils?”  Their answer: DoTerra and ONLY DoTerra. They had done no outside research on their own about essential oils and prior to selling them for this multi level marketing company, had no prior experience or knowledge of essential oils. I asked if they had any books by other authors about essential oils. They did not.

The only thing they could continue repeating was that DoTerra essential oils were superior because they are certified therapeutic grade essential oils.

“Do you realize that in the United States that essential oils are not regulated and certified by anyone? There is no regulatory board and certification board,” I said.

“That’s not true,” the DoTerra sales rep insisted. “DoTerra essential oils are certified therapeutic grade!”

So, ARE DoTerra essential oils certified?  Yes, they are — BY DoTerra themselves! The term certified therapeutic grade is a term that was trademarked by DoTerra. They even tell you this term means nothing and there is no regulations in place on their own website:

 Furthermore, there are no current regulatory standards for the descriptive use of the “therapeutic grade” for products labeled as essential oils. The CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade® mark represents dōTERRA’s own internal standards for sourcing and testing 100% pure aromatic botanical extracts using independent laboratory analysis.

So, by the “own internal standards” which basically means they regulate themselves.

So, WHY the price difference when it comes to DoTerra and Young Living essential oils versus our own Aromagregory essential oils?

We are NOT a MLM (multi level marketing) company! In order to be profitable, MLM companies must increase the price of a product greatly so they have room to wholesale to reps and wholesale again to the reps below them.

Example:  I want to start selling oranges. They cost me 50 cents each. To make a living, I am going to sell them to you for $1.00 each.

Enter the MLM company wanting to sell oranges.  They pay 50 cents for the orange. But, they want YOU and your friends below you to sell them, so they’re going to give you 25% off the retail price of the orange.  Then give you MORE is you sign up others to sell below you. How will they profit? Sell the oranges for $4.00 instead of $1.00.  How will they get away with this?  Easy – claim they are better than an orange in the world, superior in every way.  They even go a step further and call their orange “certified tastiest and healthiest”!  And the people wanting to make 25% of $4.00 believe it and spread the word to anyone who will listen.

Our aromagregory essential oils come from a respected essential oils supplier that buys directly from farms. The oils do go through the GC (Gas Chromatography) test and are 100% PURE essential oils. They have 25 years combined experience in the field of essential oils and, yes, have a PHD chemist consultant as well as a full time PHD staffer.

So, once again, WHY are our oils so much less expensive than the MLM companies? We buy great oils, bottle and label them and sell them directly to our customers — we don’t hire an army to sell the product and keep our profit up by tripling the retail price.


Thickening Liquid Soap

We’ve been making liquid soap for years but it was just the other day that I ran across this thickening tip – plain table salt.

The directions I read said to use 0.5 ounce table salt in 1.5 ounces of water per pound of diluted liquid soap. Being the rebel that I am, I didn’t weigh the salt and measured it by teaspoons. The first round didn’t thicken so I decided to look up how much a teaspoon of salt weighs. It turns out that a teaspoon of salt was a little under that halfway mark for the amount needed. So, for the first attempt I added (in total for the batch) about 1/3 of what I actually needed so I decided to add more.

The batch I made was 5 lbs of paste diluted in 7 lbs, 8 ounces of water. Since the recipe was very high in coconut (75%) the liquid soap was very thin – no where near as thick as I wanted it to be.

So, in the end, I added 2 teaspoons plain table salt per pound of DILUTED liquid soap. Since my total diluted soap weight was around 12 pounds, I ended up mixing 24 teaspoons salt in about a half a cup of warm water. (maybe next time I’ll try HOT water because it takes salt much long to dilute than you would imagine)

What I ended up with was a total surprise. Not only did the soap thicken into a gel (not super thick, but much thicker none-the-less) but the liquid soap itself felt SO MUCH MORE emollient, making it the best feeling liquid soap recipe I’ve ever made.

True, the salt DID turn the clear soap into a cloudy soap but I am more interested in quality than clarity. Besides, our liquid soap is bottled into amber colored bottles so it being clear isn’t a major issue. Also, my addition of the usual borax/water solution may have helped it along as well as the addition of 1/4 cup glycerin.

Note: When I added the salt concoction, it made white strings of clumps throughout the batch and I thought, “Yikes, what have I done?” But, after warming the liquid soap up just a bit a stirring every few minutes for about 20 minutes, all the white clumps incorporated into the batch.

Not only am I happy to find a thickener for liquid soap, but I’m so pleased with the way it made the soap FEEL – none of that “grab” sometimes associated with liquid soap making.


Big Corporate products not so natural

this article is a reprint from the Huffington Post. Thought it was important enough to keep in case I could never find it on their website again.

written by Loren Berlin

If you’ve recently traded in your Colgate toothpaste for a tube of Tom’s of Maine in an effort to be more environmentally friendly, your money is still going to the same company.

Tom’s of Maine, a popular line of natural toiletries, is owned by Colgate-Palmolive — a Fortune 500 company with $15 billion in revenues last year.

Tom’s of Maine is not the only earthy beauty company backed by a major American corporation. Rather, it’s a common trend in the world of personal care products.

Another example is Burt’s Bees, that ubiquitous line of organic balms and butters launched in the 1980s by Burt Shavitz, a Maine beekeeper who lived in a turkey coop and sold his bees’ honey from the back of his truck. Fast-forward nearly 30 years, and what was once a little collection of handmade soaps and lotions is now a factory-produced beauty line adored by hippies and hipsters alike and owned by the Clorox Co., another Fortune 500 company with more than $5.5. billion in revenues last year.

Similarly, behemoth Johnson & Johnson owns Aveeno, L’Oreal owns The Body Shop, and Estee Lauder owns both Aveda and Origins, among other brands.

Large companies are actively pursuing sales of “green” beauty products because consumers are buying more of these products, according to Jessica Rubino, beauty editor for In 2010, U.S. consumers purchased $8.2 billion in natural and organic personal care products, representing a 6 percent increase in sales over the previous year, according to Nutrition Business Journal, which tracks industry sales.

“Tons of large companies now have lines that they’re marketing as green, natural, or even organic,” wrote Rubino in an email to The Huffington Post. “At this point most mass personal care manufacturers have at least one line that tries to snag a piece of the ‘green’ market as demand for natural personal care products grows.”

But does it matter if a giant corporation owns your favorite natural beauty line? The answer depends on what you want from your products, explained Karen Grant, vice president and senior global industry analyst at the NPD Group, a market research firm.

“Most consumers are just trying to get something that works, so efficacy is the first thing they are looking for,” Grant told The Huffington Post. “It’s a smaller, niche population that asks if the company is sticking up for the brand’s core principles or asking if the product is not really so natural.”

But as sales of natural products increase, so does the confusion surrounding the definition of natural, green or organic, Rubino explained. While the Department of Agriculture regularly inspects food that is labeled organic to make sure it complies with regulations, the same rules and processes do not apply to beauty products.

“Because there are no labeling regulations about natural or organic personal care (except for state legislation in California that requires any product sold and marketed in California as organic to contain 70 percent organic content), anything goes when it comes to claims, so many — especially in conventional retailers — are unsubstantiated,” Rubino wrote.

“Greenwashing has been particularly impactful on consumers who are not well versed in natural personal care ingredients, terms, and labeling and are therefore more likely to believe that these products are in fact natural just because they’re marketed that way,” Rubino continued.

Consumers interested in learning more about the ingredients in beauty products and how to determine whether they are safe can explore Environmental Working Group’s database of cosmetics.

Soap Curing – why soap needs to cure

Cold processed soaps need time to cure and age before they can be labeled and sold. The Hot Process method of making soap does make for a bar that can be sold right away however, their look and feel is not the same as cold process. Cold process soaps are usually smooth and hard bars of soap.
The explanation for why the bars need time to cure is easy to understand. We mentioned hot process above. This is when the soap maker continues to cook each batch of soap over a heat source, speeding up the process of the saponification process (the lye) and continues to evaporate the wax. With cold process soaps nature takes care of the curing process by allowing the soaps sit out in the open.

When the soap is made, the fatty ingredients (coconut, olive, shea, soybean) and blended with sodium hydroxide (lye) along with essential oils and color and spices or herbs. When the lye (diluted in water) mixes with the molecules of the fatty oils – what you end up with is soap. However, the soaping process, known as saponification, continues over the next couple of weeks. As the bars of soap are allowed to sit out in the air, the lye works its way out of the batch and the water continues to evaporate.

A bar of soap CAN be used after only two weeks of curing. It won’t harm you. But, softer soaps melt away faster in the shower or tub. When your bars of soap are allowed to cure a full four to six weeks, the end result is a very hard bar of soap. The basic rule is – the longer it sits, the harder it gets and the longer it lasts.

When you cut your soaps into bars, spread the bars out a bit. A slight space between each one is enough to allow air to reach all sides of the bar. But when the bars are crammed against each other it makes it harder for the water in the bars of soap to evaporate. Room temperature is best. Some customers with little space have even told me that they place the bars on trays and slide the trays under the bed with a small fan running in the room when they are at home. Shelves in the laundry room work well as a curing space for you soaps too. No other options? Clean off a shelf in your closet. True, there won’t be as much air circulating in there but the soaps will still cure and your clothes will smell amazing.

Another reason why some soaps need a longer cure time has to do with their ingredients. Soaps that contain honey usually feel more ‘oily’ in the beginning. If you label your honey soaps too soon it will leave an oily stain on the label.

If you follow the simple rules of how to cure your soap, it will make all the difference in the feedback you receive from customers. Their bars will last longer and they will come back for more. After all, you wouldn’t want to buy cheese that hadn’t been aged properly. Curing soap is similar.

Cutting Soap into Bars – how to slice soap

The number one question we receive on our bulk soap loaf site is, how do I cut the loaf of soap into bars?  What do I use?

For years, we have used a wooden mitre box and a pastry scraper to cut the soap.  If you choose to use a knife to cut with, make sure it is large enough to slice all the way through the loaf of soap — but, too large of a blade or too thick of a blade can cut away more soap than is needed.soap cutter

If possible, invest in one of the better pastry scrapers, the kind with the firm or wooden handle attached.  They also come as one piece of metal with a curve on the end for the handle, but this type tends to warp over time.  They are, however, more affordable – usually only about $6.95.  The better scrapers should run around $15 and up.

The reason we choose a wooden mitre box as a guide for cutting a soap is simple — it can be altered.  Most mitre boxes do not have grooves that go all the way down to the floor of the mitre box.  With a wooden model, you can insert a saw into the straight cut (you do not want to cut your soap on an angle for regular bars) and finish sawing the groove down to the floor of the mitre box.  This insures that your bars of soap will be cut all the way through.

Now is the time to decide how wide you want your bars to be. Most people choose to cut their soaps into a one inch thickness. At Green Pergola, we cut our soap bars 1.25 inches thick, which gives us 12 bars from a loaf of soap. When you decide your thickness, measure over from the straight cut and make a mark on top of the mitre box to the right of the guide.

So, slide the soap loaf into the mitre box from the left and bring the edge of the soap over to the mark you’ve made on the top of the mitre box. Now, take your pastry scraper and start from the back side and begin sliding the blade into the soap loaf in a rocking down motion until the blade falls into the straight groove closest to you. You have now cut your first bar of soap off of your soap loaf. Repeat until finished. Any left over soap pieces, save for yourself or use as soap samples.

Aromatherapy Massage – A General overview

by Fred Quaye

The benefits of massage are known to all and sundry. They include relaxation, the improvement of blood circulation, relief of stress and pressure, lessening the effects of muscle tension, and the enhancement of both the physiological and emotional states. Of course it is necessary to include the use of the essential oils. They are known to soothe the body and mind. This is mainly the point of aromatherapy massage. It employs essential oils which are added into the base oil. When used, they are easily absorbed deep into the skin wherein they directly go towards the bloodstream. They may also enter the body when they get inhaled through the nose.

A Point Gets Strengthened

The advantages of massage are popularly known by many. Aromatherapy itself somehow strengthens the fact that massage can truly be therapeutic. The oils that are used are great additions to the effect that it poses. The aromatherapy techniques can either be done by a masseur or by an aroma therapist. Whichever is the case, you have two options too. It is either you go to a spa clinic or the specialist visits you at home.

Getting into Your Choices

The services of the aroma therapist or massage therapist always involve giving you the chance to select the essential oils or blends to be used on you. They can also blend the essential oils as per your request and they may give you what remains so you can bring it home. If you will be seeking this type of massage because you have some problems, then the practitioner will have to use a special mix to help alleviate your worries.

Aromatherapy at Home

The massage itself can be done even within the confines of your home. In fact, the massage oil can simply be prepared. If the oil is to be used to an adult, add 20 up to 25 drops of the essential oil for every two ounce of the base oil. If the oil is for a child, just add 10 up to 12 drops of the essential oil. If a baby is to be massaged, put on 5 up to 6 drops. It is as simple as that!

Available Aromatherapy Materials

Aromatherapy products are sold everywhere. Several companies are manufacturing them nowadays. After all, they are known for their pain relief, cleansing, and healing process advantages both for the mind and the body. There are also a variety of uses to which it applies. The medical arena sees it essential for lifting the depressive mood of the cancer patients. Athletes also enjoy the benefit of such in soothing their tensed muscles. At the same time, it energizes the body.

As you shop around, you will find different products being sold in the market. You will see the aromatherapy components contained in lotions, massage oils, conditioners, shampoos, candles, air diffusers, air fresheners, baby lotions, warm oil burners, laundry products, bath beads, bath salts, shower tablets, and the plug ins. There are products that are meant for both the adults and the children.

Most of the aromatherapy massage produces are safe to use. However, it is still necessary to consult your doctor prior to using any of the products in case you suffer from some special medical circumstances. You may also get in touch with a herbalist for more information on the use of the A General Overview on Aromatherapy Massage

The benefits of massage are known to all and sundry. They include relaxation, the improvement of blood circulation, relief of stress and pressure, lessening the effects of muscle tension, and the enhancement of both the physiological and emotional states. Of course it is necessary to include the use of the essential oils. They are known to soothe the body and mind. This is mainly the point of aromatherapy massage. It employs essential oils which are added into the base oil. When used, they are easily absorbed deep into the skin wherein they directly go towards the bloodstream. They may also enter the body when they get inhaled through the nose.

A Point Gets Strengthened

The advantages of massage are popularly known by many. Aromatherapy itself somehow strengthens the fact that massage can truly be therapeutic. The oils that are used are great additions to the effect that it poses. The aromatherapy techniques can either be done by a masseur or by an aromatherapist. Whichever is the case, you have two options too. It is either you go to a spa clinic or the specialist visits you at home.

Getting into Your Choices

The services of the aromatherapist or massage therapist always involve giving you the chance to select the essential oils or blends to be used on you. They can also blend the essential oils as per your request and they may give you what remains so you can bring it home. If you will be seeking this type of massage because you have some problems, then the practitioner will have to use a special mix to help alleviate your worries.

Aromatherapy at Home

The massage itself can be done even within the confines of your home. In fact, the massage oil can simply be prepared. If the oil is to be used to an adult, add 20 up to 25 drops of the essential oil for every two ounce of the base oil. If the oil is for a child, just add 10 up to 12 drops of the essential oil. If a baby is to be massaged, put on 5 up to 6 drops. It is as simple as that!

Available Aromatherapy Materials

Aromatherapy products are sold everywhere. Several companies are manufacturing them nowadays. After all, they are known for their pain relief, cleansing, and healing process advantages both for the mind and the body. There are also a variety of uses to which it applies. The medical arena sees it essential for lifting the depressive mood of the cancer patients. Athletes also enjoy the benefit of such in soothing their tensed muscles. At the same time, it energizes the body.

As you shop around, you will find different products being sold in the market. You will see the aromatherapy components contained in lotions, massage oils, conditioners, shampoos, candles, air diffusers, air fresheners, baby lotions, warm oil burners, laundry products, bath beads, bath salts, shower tablets, and the plug ins. There are products that are meant for both the adults and the children.

Most of the aromatherapy massage produces are safe to use. However, it is still necessary to consult your doctor prior to using any of the products in case you suffer from some special medical circumstances. You may also get in touch with a herbalist for more information on the use of the essential plant and root extracts. essential plant and root extracts.

About The Author

Fred is a network engineer and currently researching on the benefits of full body massage.

The author invites you to visit:

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Soy Wax Candles – Why Soy Candles are the Natural Alternative

Soy Wax Candles – Why Candles Made Out of Soy May Be the Healthy and Natural Alternative
by Connie Ragen Green

Soy candles have many advantages over the more traditional paraffin candles. They were first offered to the public by a chain of stores known as The Body Shop. Even though they have only been around since the early 1990’s, candles made out of soy have continued to grow in popularity. This is no accident; these candles are more inexpensive than ones made of other ingredients, they are natural, and they also distribute more scent into the surrounding atmosphere.

It turns out that beeswax costs about ten times as much as paraffin. In searching for a cheaper alternative, soy candle wax came to be developed. When vegetable wax was combined with partially hydrogenated soybean oil, coconut oil, and palm oil, the resulting mixture was soy wax. A final additive, beeswax, was the magic ingredient that created the mixture that is now known as soy wax. This is now the most economical way to make a natural wax candle.

These soy candles have a longer burning time than those made of paraffin and other blends. This is also the reason that less soot is produced when they burn. They burn with a smaller flame, which account for this longer burn time. Also, the wicks tend to be larger and more split. It turns out that this wax contains much larger molecules with a lower volatility. It is believed that this is the reason that soy will burn for longer periods of time.

You will want to make sure you have adequate ventilation in any room where you burn candles. Trimming the wick will keep the flame going for a longer time. Make sure you do not have too many candles burning simultaneously. All of these are safety tips that will allow you to enjoy your candles even more.

Soy candles are often scented with essential oils. These oils are taken from aromatic plants and intended to enhance both health and beauty. One of my favorite scents is lavender. Candles that are scented with lavender oil are supposed to increase the alpha waves in your brain, making it easier for you to relax. There are many more scents you can choose from.

You can make your own candles out of soy fairly easily, once you know how to do it. In fact, it is much easier to make these types of candles than those made out of paraffin. Flaked soy wax will be easier to use than block wax. You can combine soy candle wax with fragrance and dye to have just the right candle for you.

About The Author

And now I invite you to learn more about the benefits of soy wax candles by visiting Soy Wax Candles and start burning, and even making, the candles that are the healthy and natural alternatives to tradition paraffin.

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How does soap work?

How does oil & dirt get washed away with soap?
by Dr. George Grant. July 12, 2005
We use soap each day in our lives in the form of detergents, shampoo, shower crème, or bar soap. We are so used to using soap that we rarely stop and wonder how this wonderful compound manages to help us clean ourselves day after day. Have you ever thought about what would happen if there were no soap? How else can we rid the dirt off our bodies or our clothes?

Most of the time, dirt comes in the form of grease or oil which sticks itself onto surfaces and will not come off if only water is just used. This is because oil and grease are non-polar, which means that the oil molecules are not charged and therefore are not attracted to polar substances such as water. Because of this, oil tends to stick with its own molecules or other non-polar substances.

On the other hand, water is a polar substance which is made up of one positive and one negative charge, and therefore is a fragmented substance. With this, water dissolves salt easily because salt is made up of charged ions in which the positive charge will be attracted to the negative ions in water.

Due to the fact of the nature of oil and water, you will see that oil will not dissolve in water but remain clustered on the surface. Also, oil and grease will stick onto plates and cutlery during cleaning, and no amount of water can completely remove it. That’s when soap comes in. All it takes is just one layer of soap with water and the oil will be removed. How does this happen?

Well, soap is a unique substance of potassium fatty acid salts, produced through a chemical reaction called saponification. Its molecules are made up of a hydrocarbon chain, which is non-polar, as well as a carboxylate molecule which is polar. Therefore, the non-polar part of the soap – the hydrocarbon chain, is not attracted to water but to oil (lipophilic). On the other hand, the carboxylate molecules which are negatively charged, are attracted to the positively charged water molecules (hydrophilic).

In this case, when soap is applied to oil and grease, the lipophilic parts of soap will attach itself to the non polar molecules of oil. However, the other component of soap, the hydrophilic component, will be left on the surface. When water is applied onto this surface with a sponge, the hydrophilic component will be attracted to the water molecules and is lifted from the surface, together with the oil. This way, both oil and soap is removed with the wipe of the sponge. At the same time, because soap molecules have been combined with oil, other soap molecules will also be attracted to it. This is why you can see clusters of oil that are surrounded by soap within the water that has been used for washing. Of course, once soap has been used up to attract the oil, more soap would need to be added to work on the access oil.

In conclusion, our lives have been made cleaner and easier through the wonders of a simple substance called soap. Without it, we would be having a difficult time removing dirt, oil and grease in our everyday cleaning. Visit for knowledge on chemical elements,chemistry directoryPsychology Articles,chemistry tools and much more.

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Dr. George Grant is an experienced researcher in Bio-chemistry. He has done extensive researches and experiments in the field. He is a visiting faculty for some of the most reputed Science colleges.

Similarities of Candle and Soap Making Supplies

by Thomas Morva | August 28, 2005

There are a number of similarities in making soap and candles. Both require pouring the raw materials into molds to give them shape.  Candles and soap need scents and color as well. Many stores s…

Candle and soap-making supply stores are found nationwide and on the Internet. It is easy to find materials for very reasonable prices.

Making soap is similar to making candles. The early steps are alike, in that they both involve melting the materials in order to pour them into a mold to give them shape. While wax or gel is used to make candles, a glycerin compound is usually used for soap. This is normally a mixture of natural vegetable oils, pure water, glycerin, and a soothing moisturizer. Once the raw materials are melted, they are poured into a mold that gives them shape. There are an endless variety of molds available for both soap and candles. Candles and soaps can be molded into a number of designs and shapes. Another difference, besides the materials used, is that soap molds are usually smaller than candle molds.

Also, candles often stay in containers or votives, while soap is always taken out of its mold.

Candles and soaps both benefit from the addition of colors and aromas. There are a number of dyes to give color to soap and candles. It is important to use the correct kind of dye for the soap. Candle dyes could be toxic and create skin rashes or discoloration if used in soap.  There are scents that can make candles and soaps more pleasing, tiny bottles of concentrated liquid that give soap or candles an aroma.

Candle and soap-making supply stores have all of the ingredients needed to make either product. It is important to use the materials for their intended uses rather than mixing and matching. The processes of making soap and candles are similarHealth Fitness Articles, but they are not identical.

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Candle Making Supplies provides detailed information on wholesale, discount, soy, gel, and bee wax candle making supply, and more. For more information go to

Emulsifying Wax – how to use emulsifying wax

Emulsifying wax is a necessary ingredient when it comes to making lotions and creams. Everyone has heard the term “water and oil don’t mix”.  The use of emulsifying wax will do just that – bind your oils and water together on a molecular level with the end result becoming lotion or cream.

This is the method by which lotions and creams are made, by binding together oils and water.  Years ago before I began making lotion, a friend was attempting it by using beeswax.  After seeing almost two dozen jugs of failed lotion batches on her workshop counters, I did a little research and found Ewax, also known as emulsifying wax.  We made it together in her workshop and the very first batch turned into lotion without separating.  You can use beeswax as an emulsifier as long as you include borax in the formula, but keep in mind that beeswax isn’t actually an emulsifier – it is a thickener.  The problem is that is makes a greasy lotion and the results are unpredictable.   Borax helps the beeswax do its job. The difference between beeswax and Ewax seems to be the strength of the emulsion. You cannot use as great a quantity of water with the beeswax.  Beeswax usually handles about 50% oils and 50% water without separation. More water and the lotion will eventually separate.

Incorporating emulsifying wax into your recipe will keep the oil and water from separating by creating an emulsion between the oil and water. Emulsifying wax will also thicken your recipe. Using too little of the Emulsifying wax and the lotion recipe will not hold together.  There were batches in the past that I obviously measure incorrectly because, at first, it looks like a successful gallon of lotion.  However, after cooling for an hour, half of the jug contained water at the bottom and a runny lotion floating on top

The percentage of Emulsifying wax usually begins at 5% of the total formula but can be used at a higher rate to create an extra thick lotion.  My personal recipe calls for 6 ounces of Ewax but I always use 6.4 ounces, just to be on the safe side.

The most common emulsifiers used are: Emulsifying Wax NF,  Cetearyl Alcohol and Polysorbate 20.  I have always used Emulsifying Wax NF.

Unlike some emulsifying waxes, Ewax  does not deteriorate on heating, experiencing only a slight difference in color at temperatures up to 150-152°C for two hours. Under these harsh conditions, it may lose 2-3% in weight with minor hardening of the wax.

While Emulsifying wax NF is contains some natural ingredients like palm oil, it does go through a chemical process in order to manufacture it.  With this in mind, I prefer to stay on the safe side and tell myself that it is completely un-natural.  That way, I can safely say that my lotions and 94% natural when I have used 5% ewax and 1% preservative.

FROM NATURE WITH LOVE, a major bath and body supplier, describes their Emulsifying wax as such:

Our NF quality, vegetable based emulsifying wax is used to keep the oil and water from separating in your creams and lotions. It is supplied in white waxy pellets or flakes, and it has low odor. The emulsifying wax is made from vegetable source fatty alcohols however, this product is not considered “all natural.” It combines the emollient, emulsifying, thickening properties of cetyl alcohol and stearyl alcohol. Emulsifying wax can form extremely stable w/o or o/w emulsions. Use at 5% – 10% in your “water in oil” or “oil in water” emulsions. Melt the wax with your other fats and waxes and then slowly add your water phase while continuously stirring. The key to forming a stable emulsion is to keep the formulation in motion until it cools completely.

To put this whole Emulsifying wax topic in perspective, here is a basic formula for creating lotion.  The recipe below makes ½ gallon of lotion.

First, the percentages – beside it, the actual numbers for the recipe indicated after “OR”, based on 64 ounces.  Note – preservative is calculated OUTSIDE the numbers of the formula and is based on 1% of the TOTAL recipe.

75% water OR 48 ounces water

5% shea butter  OR 3.2 ounces shea butter

10% olive oil OR 6.4 ounces olive oil

5% jojoba OR 3.2 ounces jojoba

5% Ewax OR 3.2 ounces Emulsifying Wax (Ewax)

0.64 ounces preservative if using Germaben II, otherwise, reading directions for the type of preservative you are using.

Getting high on bath salts

It seems that the bath and body industry is getting a bad name these days, but for no good reason.  The other day a customer asked me if we had those bath salt you get high on.  I had no idea what she was talking about.  She was teasing, by the way – she didn’t really want them.  So, I began searching the news stories only to find that some shady companies out there are selling a new drug on the street and have the nerve to place the words “bath salt” on the label.

An Associated Press article reported:

When Neil Brown got high on dangerous chemicals sold as bath salts, he took his skinning knife and slit his face and stomach repeatedly. Brown survived, but authorities say others haven’t been so lucky after snorting, injecting or smoking powders with such innocuous-sounding names as Ivory Wave, Red Dove and Vanilla Sky.


Some say the effects of the powders are as powerful as abusing methamphetamine. Increasingly, law enforcement agents and poison control centers say the advertised bath salts with complex chemical names are an emerging menace in several U.S. states where authorities talk of banning their sale.


From the Deep South to California, emergency calls are being reported over-exposure to the stimulants the powders often contain: mephedrone and methylenedioxypyrovalerone, also known as MDPV.


Sold under such names as Ivory Wave, Bliss, White Lightning and Hurricane Charlie, the chemicals can cause hallucinations, paranoia, rapid heart rates and suicidal thoughts, authorities say. The chemicals are in products sold legally at convenience stores and on the Internet as bath salts and even plant foods. However, they aren’t necessarily being used for the purposes on the label. Instead, people are getting high on the so-called bath salts.

As someone who sells real bath salts for a living, I am not amused by these companies using the term “bath salt” in order to slip under the radar and sell their dirty product.  After reading these news reports and articles, it triggered a memory.  Just the week before someone had called our store and asked if we carried CLOUD NINE bath salt.  Not knowing at the time, I told her, “No. We only carry our own brand of products.”  Apparently, Cloud Nine is another brand of these faux cocaine packets of BS.

Searching for the Cloud Nine brand, I found a person saying this about the product:  “I tried it. Its very good…the comedown is easier if you smoke it need to use foil or baking sheet…as strong as crystal meth. You can buy a quarter gram at the gas station near my house for $16.00 that includes tax.”  Classy.  So incredibly classy.  Some former meth head is giving testimonials.

If anything, the pricepoint alone should let you know that it is not bath salt of the bathing kind.  Other reported prices have been $25 to $30 for a tiny packet. Found in gas stations, head shops and smoke shops, other forms of these substances are also labeled as “plant food” and “laundry powder”.

These fake bath salts, commonly manufactured in China and India, are being marketed as bath salts and are being sold in individual bags on the Internet and in convenience stores and on the street by the brand names Ivory Wave, Ocean, Charge +, White Lightening, Scarface, Hurricane Charlie, Red Dove, Cloud-9 and White Dove.

These substances have already been banned in the United Kingdom and several other countries, including  Israel, Australia and Canada. In the United States, Kentucky has already filed legislation to ban the substance and North Dakota’s Pharmacy Board has added several of these same chemicals to their state’s banned substance list.

I’ve always found drugs to be an idiot’s past time. But it really ticks me off when they give the bath industry a bad name with their illegal activity because, after reading many articles on newsites, it is apparent that people are only skimming the news about this topic.  Many of them believe that people are actually getting high on regular lavender bath salts.

What is next? Bricks of coke wrapped in flowery paper and a ribbon then labeled “handmade soap”?  I certainly hope not. 


Oils for Different skin types

The various types of oil react in different ways with the skin. For example, grapeseed and rice bran oil are good for nearly all types of skin – light, beneficial and rapidly absorbed into the skin.  Wheat germ oil acts as a preservative, so it’s good to include some in all massage oils.  Generally speaking, you will find that the following oils are good for these skin types.

Dry skin: almond, castor, cocoa butter, grapeseed, olive, rice bran, wheat germ

Normal skin: almond, corn, grapeseed, sesame, rice bran, sunflower, safflower

Oily skin: soybean

Oils that are effortlessly absorbed into the skin are: corn, grapeseed, rice bran, sesame, sunflower and wheat germ.

Less easily absorbed oils are: sweet almond, avocado, coconut, olive, apricot and peanut.

It’s good to develop a skincare practice to keep the skin in excellent condition, or to repair it if it’s in poor condition.

Two factors decide the number of times a day you need to follow this routine: your occupation (clean or dirty) and whether or not you live in the clean air of the country or you are surrounded by pollution in a big city.  Air conditioning will also make the skin need more moisture.

How to raise your vibration by using Color Therapy and Aromatherapy

by Marlene Mitchell
Colors of flower reflects in the color of essential oils. As plants derive energy from the sun’s component rays which contain all the colors of a rainbow, they offer a special method of absorbing color vibrations into our system. Unlike synthetic substances, which have no vital force contained in them, essential oils are filled with living, pulsating vibrations. This is why aromatherapy, like color therapy, forms a part of “vibrational medicine” – a form of medicine that uses the powerful vibrations of the electromagnetic spectrum. As I have been researching Aromatherapy and Color Therapy for years I have learned how they both work harmoniously together and blend to create a desired effect.

To create a perfect blend of Aromatherapy with the color vibration you can blend a complementary color pair such as yellow and violet, or pink and green. You can also use color as a guide to using essential oils, by mixing those with similar or complementary colors.

Orange skin tonic:

Put 16 drops of orange essential oil and 4 drops of neroli into ½ cup/4 fl. Oz/100 ml orange flower water. Use as a cleanser, as required. Do not use if pregnant. Do not go out into the sun for at least 72 hours.

Yellow/Violet Healing Balm For Acne and Spots

Mix two drops of lemon essential oil and one drop of lavender essential oil with 6 drops of evening primrose oil. Spread onto the affected area morning and evening. Do not go out into the sun for at least 72 hours. Do not use if pregnant.

Violet Tonic For Blemished Skin

Put 12 drops of lavender into ½ cup/4 fl. Oz/100 ml of lavender water, and use to cleanse the affected area. Do not use if pregnant.

Yellow//Red Cellulite Bath Mix

Mix into 2 Tablespoons/30 ml. Of Almond Oil 2 drops of lemon and one drop of sandalwood essential oil . Add to the bath as required.

White – Cajeput

Red – Sandalwood

Orange – Orange, Mandarin, Cinnamon, Carrot Seed Oil, Neroli,

Gold – Patchouli

Yellow – Citronella, Lemongrass, Evening Primrose Oil, Lemon, Camphor.

Olive Green – Essential oils made from herbs, Himalaya Pine.

Emerald Green – Rosemary, Scotch Pine, Basil, Peppermint.

Pink – Geranium

Saphire Blue – Myrrh, Tea Tree, Roman Chamomile

Royal Blue – German Chamomile

Violet – Violet, Rose, Rose Geranium, Lavender, Juniper

Deep Magenta – Frankincense, Clary Sage,


Subtle energy is produced by our body’s energy anatomy, also referred to as our subtle anatomy. The body is surrounded by a vibrational field that is commonly referred to as the aura. The aura is an electromagnetic force field that surrounds all living things in both the animal and plant kingdom and interpenetrates the physical body.

The force field shields and protects the body. Perhaps you can sometimes see a light around a person’s head or you may sense somebody’s mood. If so, you may be becoming aware of the human energy field that people call the Aura. The colors of the aura are a good indicator of the personality, health and spirituality. The aura is multi-colored and flows and moves with you, changing color with your moods, feelings and spiritual condition.

Disease and illness are physical disorders which have their roots in being blocked or stuck in energy flow of the body–or in some cases, too free a flow, most often in or near vital organs. The flow is blocked, or stuck, or unbalanced, as a result of thought, which eventually works through the physical body as a pain or as an organic disturbance of some kind. This is the true nature of disease and illnesses and disorders to which humankind is prone. The release of the healing powers within oneself depends upon this particular cleansing process which can be cleansed using aromatherapy and color therapy.


Essential oils are derived from grasses, buds, peels, branches, needles, bark, leaves, seeds, berries, flowers, roots, fruits, woods, herbs, spices. Carriers, which carry the essential oils throughout the body and bloodstream are oils are derived from nuts, plants, fruit kernels, beeswax, flowers, flower seeds, fruit seeds, plant seeds, vegetables, herbs. These have thicker consistency so that they can carry the essential oils throughout the body. Aromatherapy promotes health of body, peacefulness of mind, helps the negative emotions to rest and by working in conjunction with the olfactory system, helps a person get in touch with their true selves.

Essential oils are gaining acceptance as a leading choice in home care. Many chiropractors value essential oils with amazing results in chiropractic treatments. Scents that activate the brain’s emotional centre and redefining psychology. Practitioners of traditional Indian Ayurvedic medicine have valued essential oils for thousands of years. More and more medical doctors are valuing the clinical benefits of essential oils. Aromatherapy is now being used as an adjunct to core professions such as nursing, geriatrics, rehabilitation work, counseling, and physiotherapy. Used with naturopaths, hospice, hospitals, Special Needs, working in the travel-leisure industry at spas, resorts, retreats and cruise ships, health centers. Aromatherapy is used in methods such as massage, sitz baths, compresses, baths, perfumes, infusions, facial care, hair care. They can be used by human and animal alike. Do not use essential oils on cats or small animals.

The known physical and psychological effects of essential oils are often indicators of their subtle properties. For example, rosemary promotes mental clarity and relieves mental fatigue. On a subtle level, rosemary has an affinity with the sixth energy center (Third Eye), and is used to promote clear thoughts and insight. On a physical level juniper is cleansing and antiseptic. On a subtle level, it is used to cleanse a room of negativity, and to detoxify the subtle bodies.


If you are unsure of how your skin will react to an essential oil, apply one drop of the oil to some carrier oil to the inside of your wrist or forearm. Check the spot for any itching, redness, burning or irritation after a few hours. Or if needed to be applied before a massage a couple of minutes. If you have very delicate skin and wish to be extremely careful, you can cover the spot with a Band-Aid and leave it for 24 hours. You could also use these same procedures for carriers.


Color therapy is being used for Special Needs children in Special Needs centers. Color therapy is being used for children who have learning disabilities. A special colored filter chosen by the individual child and placed over their reading material helps a child learn more. Yellow is the most popular color. Dr. Phil had mentioned that using a blue light at bedtime helps to calm children to sleep and relax and has been used to calm children with Attention Deficit Disorder.

Color is the tiny visible portion of the vast spectrum of electromagnetic energy which is one of the fundamental forces of the universe. Light functions at the subatomic (quantum) level of matter as well as filling the whole space (as microwave background radiation – -an echo of the Big Bang of cosmic creation). All life on earth depends on the nutritious energy of light from the sun, which is conveniently stripped of dangerous levels of ultraviolet radiation by the earth’s atmosphere. Light, as bio-photons, is also working within the body’s cells as communication, and outside the body to infuse the auric field. An individual’s life and psychology is symbolically related to colors and the colors occur in the aura. You may be ‘seeing red’ or ‘feeling blue.’ You may be ‘in the dark’(depressed) or fired with enthusiasm, bright spark. Growing spiritual awareness is linked with pale hues and the golden-white light that unifies all colors and represents the unity or Source of all.

You can apply color by putting a colored light bulb in a lamp and shining it on yourself, or, you can breathe color in, or you can visualize it. You can also put a color filter around a glass of water and let the sun shine on it for a couple of hours to create solarized water. You can purchase colored filters from stage lighting companies. Then the water will have the vibration of whatever color filter you put around the glass. Your whole system would then partake and benefit from the color effects. You might apply color therapy using a swing arm lamp. You then can cut out two cardboard squares with a giant square in the middle of each square. You need two pieces of this. You then tape these two pieces together. Leave an opening to slide in your colored filters between the two cardboard pieces. Then you Velcro the square to the base of your swing arm lamp. You then can either use colored light bulbs. These you can purchase from a lamp company or hardware store. Or you can use colored filters. Once you do this, you shine the light on a body part or you shine it systemically. This means, you shine the light all over the front or back of your body for an hour at a time. Some systems of Chroma Therapy (Color Therapy) teach that you should not shine violet light on the face. You should leave an hour or two in between different color treatments. You should also do a muscle test or dowse to see if the color is correct to use for that length of time. A person who is not comfortable under a certain color should not use that color for a lamp treatment. If you like a color, it is good for you. If you have a neutral reaction to a color, you likely don’t need that color. You can use this type of therapy at night for your tonations (This means color treatment) if you get a light timer so that the light can be timed to go off at intervals. Each of the colors has a different effect on the body, yet they are all interrelated. They all work together to relie!

ve, cleanse, build and heal. There are no dangerous side effects at any time. It would be better for a person to be unclothed. But if that person feels uncomfortable being unclothed.

Then wearing white cotton underwear would be a great idea as the light can penetrate through white material especially if it is natural as the skin can breathe.

Treatments may be taken at any time before eating, but wait for two hours or more after a meal. If indigestion occurs, however, yellow may be used at that time. Normal light in the room will not interfere with the effect of the color, but do not use in the direct sunlight or other strong lights. It will dissipate the strength of the color.

Have the room warm enough to prevent a chill. Since it is the effect of the color and not the heat, the lamp may be four to eight feet away from the body. It is best to be in a reclining position or sitting. The swivel on the lamp allows proper exposure on different areas.

Clothing makes a difference to a light treatment. You wear a color of clothing that is agreeable. The light will penetrate your clothes giving you a tonation. This is like shining a light on yourself through the color of your clothing. However, certain fibres with heavily saturated colors resist and diffuse the light. White cotton is the best of the fibres because it is natural and it doesn’t obstruct the light. This is called a tonation.

You can visualize or imagine the color you need or breathe in the colors that you need. Contemplating on a color either in your mind or by keeping your attention focused on something of the color you want to work with can be valuable . A more intellectual form of color meditation is to assemble your thoughts about a given color either just letting the associations flow or even writing them down.

Vegetable food coloring can be used in bath water to give your self a luxurious color bath. You can colored salt or baking soda to make a parable easily dispersed color bath salt. Perhaps you’d enjoy a color bath combined with some favourite water proof stones and perhaps some herbs or scented oils. Add Rose colored and aqua colored baths if you have a bathtub (its on the list of home improvements.)

Purple and dark blue should only be used for a short time ten to twenty minutes at most, as they can be depressing if overused. Orange is very invigorating and deep clear greens are very restful. You can add flower petals to the bath. Be careful that the bath water is not too hot as this can destroy the properties of the flowers like roses.

Art can be used in color healing, painting or drawing with the colors you feel are needed is a valuable and expressive way to integrate color healing into your life. Color can be gazed at, you can get a swatch of a color or gemstones or candles to look at it or use objects of that color. Just walking in nature and looking at flowers is one way to bring in color . Study the artwork of the artist you enjoy and explore the effects that the artists color choices have on your emotions and sense of well being.

You can use colored food. This is called the rainbow diet. If you have been too depressed and you need to be uplifted, you can use the warm colors to heal. If you have been too stimulated and you need to calm down, you can use the cool colors to cool yourself down. These are some ways to use color in your daily life.

The bottom line of this article is whether you use essential oils in massage or in an aromatic bath, you are using the color frequencies that relate to their qualities and therapeutic actions and vibrations.

To your health,

Marlene Mitchell

About The Author

Marlene M. Mitchell is a Certified Aromatherapy Teacher and Certified Color Therapist. Marlene Mitchell is a Certified Aromatherapy Teacher and the Director of Aromatherapy International Certified Institute. Marlene is a Chairperson for National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy. She also has her school approved by the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy. Also she has these Certified Aromatherapy Programs approved by the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario for CEU’s. Marlene is also a Certified Adults Facilitator who has graduated from an extensive program. She also is a Certified Online Teacher who has graduated from an extensive program. Marlene is currently teaching Complimentary Therapy workshops in her Institute as well at the Ottawa/Carleton School Board in Ottawa, Ontario as well as St. Lawrence College in Brockville and Smith Falls, Ontario, Canada. Marlene has done this for over 10 years. Marlene also teaches General Interest workshops online for Ontario Learn. is a consortium of 22 Ontario Community Colleges who have partnered to develop and deliver on-line courses. Through this she teaches courses on Aromatherapy, Color Therapy, Color Psychology, Crystals, Gemstones, Vibrational Healing, Flower Essences, Subtle Aromatherapy.

To learn more visit her website: She has posted more articles and information here. Her email address is

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