Skin patch testing is an important part of using essential oils, as they have the potential to cause irritation and allergic reactions on the skin. It involves applying a small amount of a selected oil to the skin in a controlled environment and observing for any reactions over several days.
Due to high quality of oils we use, the concentration of active ingredients may exceed what is normally experienced in nature.
Here are some steps to follow when doing skin patch testing for essential oils:
Preparing Diluted Solution
We recommend adding 1 drop of essential oil to 12 drops of carrier oil, and using this mixture for skin patch testing to reduce likely hood of severe irritation to the skin.
Steps for Skin Patch
1. Choose the oil you want to test:
Before doing any skin patch testing, make sure that you are familiar with the properties of the essential oils you wish to use and what potential reactions they could cause on your skin.
2. Collect necessary materials:
Be sure to have all the required materials handy before beginning your testing. This includes cotton swabs, a clean cloth or paper towel, and the essential oils you want to test.
3. Prepare your skin:
Before applying any essential oil, make sure that your skin is clean and dry. Gently rub an unscented lotion or carrier oil into the area where you plan on testing in order to create a barrier between the skin and the essential oil.
4. Do a patch test:
Dip one end of the cotton swab into the essential oil you want to test and apply it to a small area of skin on your arm or leg (avoid sensitive areas like the face, neck, and groin). Cover this area with a clean cloth or paper towel and leave it for 24 hours. After 24 hours has passed, remove the cloth or paper towel and inspect the skin for any signs of irritation.
5. Rinse off the area:
If there are no signs of irritation, rinse the area with warm water and pat it dry. If there are signs of irritation, rinse off the oil immediately and do not reapply the essential oil to that area. Use a soap to help assist to remove excess oil on the skin.
6. Monitor reactions:
Monitor the area of skin where you applied the essential oil for at least 48 hours and look out for any signs of irritation. If anything appears, rinse off immediately with warm water and pat it dry.
By following these steps, you should be able to do skin patch testing safely and identify potential reactions before using essential oils on your skin. However, if you experience any irritation or have any concerns, it is best to see a doctor immediately. Taking the time to do skin patch testing before using essential oils can help you avoid potential reactions and enjoy their therapeutic benefits safely.
*This guide serves as a indication, if you are uncertain about your skin contact your doctor before preforming tests on yourself.
Essential oils that require Carrier oils.
Some Essential Oils MUST be used with a carrier oil, irrespective how other oils may behave on your skin. Below are some example of oils which are known to be irritants if used undiluted are (this list is not extensive):
- Cinnamon Bark Oil
- Peppermint Oil
- Oregano Oil
- Lemongrass Oil
- Bergamot Oil
- Tea Tree Oil
- Thyme Oil
- Nutmeg Oil
- Clove Bud Oil
- Lemongrass Essential Oils
- Wintergreen Essential Oils
- Lemon Essential Oils
- Orange Essential Oils
- Grapefruit Essential Oils
- Rosemary Essential Oils