Skin Patch Test To Be Safe: How To Do Before Essential Oil Use
You probably know that essential oils are great ingredients to use for scalp conditions which they heal and nourish it. Therefore, they are excellent for hair growth. But if you want not to irritate or burn your scalp then a skin patch test is a must.
In fact it’s an allergy test.
Pure essential oils are highly concentrated and potent, so diluting them is a mandatory step. The way to do it is to add them to cold pressed carrier oils. This procedure also prevents the essential oils from evaporating since essential oils are not actually oils!
Do the skin patch test to make sure the essential oil you want to use in your hair care regimen won’t have any disturbing allergic reactions.
An essential oil is the essence of the heart & soul of a plant.
How to do a skin patch test.
- Mix 1 drop of the essential oil you want to test with a tsp (5 ml) of carrier oil.
- Use a carrier oil that your skin knows and feels comfortable with. You could use olive oil, jojoba oil, sweet almond oil or one that you know that you are not allergic to. For example if you know you are allergic to almonds then avoid using sweet almond oil on your skin. The same applies to the essential oils, for instance if you are allergic to pines avoid the pine essential oil. You get the point, right?
- Stir the mixture with a glass or stainless steel spoon (whisk, spatula) into a small glass bowl to blend. Don’t use plastic, wooden or aluminum containers or stirring tools.
- Make sure the skin is clean without body lotions or body butters.
- Dip a Q-tip or a cotton ball into the mixture and apply a small amount just about 1 inch (2,5 cm) to the inside of your wrist or elbow.
- Leave the area uncovered or cover it with a band-aid if you are going to expose the area to the sun, especially if the essential oil you are testing is phototoxic, such as bergamot or lime essential oil. But don’t forget to check it once in a while.
- Don’t wash it for 24 hours.
- It’s safe to use the essential oil if no sign of itching, redness or swelling occurs after the 24 hour period.
- If irritation, burning, redness or an allergy rash occurs during this 24 hour period apply olive oil (or jojoba if you are allergic to olives and olive oil) to the tested area and wash it immediately with soap and water. It’s best to apply aloe vera gel afterwards. Note that it may itch a little bit the moment you apply it but that’s normal, as long as it stops in just a few minutes.
Let me give you quickly 3 basic safety notes about essential oils.
1. Don’t choose essential oils impulsively and always keep in mind any food, skin or respiratory allergies or health conditions you may have! Of course, it goes without saying that if you have a sensitive skin or when you are in doubt you should always consult an expert or your physician.
2. Don’t use them if you are pregnant or nursering. Especially in the first trimester of the pregnancy essential oils are totally forbidden. Always consult your doctor. Also, be very careful if you want to use them on children and the elderly. Seek the advice of a specialist or a doctor, ok?
3. Keep them out of the reach of children and keep them out of your eyes!
Safety comes first!
To You With Love.