The term “carrier oil” is frequently mentioned by those who sell or use essential oils. However, a carrier oil and an essential oil are two different things. An essential oil is basically the extracted essence of a plant. If you think of the word “essence,” it’s almost like the plant’s ultimate purpose, or reason for being.
Take cinnamon essential oil, for example. Like all other oils, you can derive cinnamon’s essence, or essential oil, from the bark or the leaf of the cinnamon tree, by submerging them in a base oil. This effectively pulls out the “essence,” or spice’s most powerful properties, in concentrated form. You only need a tiny amount of an essential oil for it to be effective.
A carrier oil, in contrast, is merely the fat that has been extracted from a seed, nut, or other plant that is naturally high in essential fatty acids, by pressing and squeezing or crushing it. So a carrier oil is really just oil. But we call it a carrier because its purpose is to provide a base to contain the essential oil and increase absorption of the essential oil.
Because a carrier oil is naturally rich in essential fatty acids, it will be extremely beneficial to the skin as well as to the body if ingested. However, most essential oils tend to evaporate too readily on the air. Plus the tiny amounts that are recommended for use in healing are not able to be transferred to the skin of the body, which covers a wide area.
Carrier oils have the effect of diluting and assimilating essential oils – basically, spreading them out. The carrier oil literally carries the essential oil’s benefits with it. Without the carrier oil to distribute its healing power, the essential oil’s overall effect is greatly diminished while its power, though potent, is concentrated to a very small area.
Carrier Oils for Dry Skin
If your skin tends toward being dry, then carrier-oil based essential oil blends will be optimal for healing, smoothing and moisturizing every inch of you. You can make your own essential oil skincare recipes for the face and body, using carrier oils. They’re far better for the health of your skin and body because they don’t contain chemicals and additives like regular skincare products do. Carrier oil based skincare is non-comedogenic, which means it won’t clog your pores. Your skin has a protective surface called the hydrolipid film. Hydro refers to water, and lips to fats, or oil. In order for your skin to be healthy, there needs to be a delicate balance of natural flora that protects your epidermis, or skin. Essential fatty acids are lacking in people with dry skin. This is why hydrating your body by way of drinking plenty of water really doesn’t improve the condition of your skin.