The Smart & Easy Way To Make Your Own Essential Oils
The Smart & Easy Way To Make Your Own Essential Oils by: Ashley Hetrick – Off the Grid News
It’s surprisingly easy to extract homemade essential oils at from home-grown herbs.
The health benefits of aromatherapy have long been documented in peer-reviewed studies, and they’re now being used in hospitals by nurses as complementary alternative medicine. Essential oils also have been shown to have antibacterial properties, and are being studied for their uses in creating food-safe disinfectants for fruits and vegetables. Other oils, such as rose geranium, have been shown to be especially effective at deterring ticks.
Commercially produced essential oils are inexpensive and readily available, but it’s easy to imagine an emergency scenario where you might have a need for a safe and effective oil.
The properties of essential oils vary based on the type of plant. Choosing which type of essential oil to extract depends both on what you have on hand and how you’d like to use the oil. Good plants to start with include rosemary, sage, thyme, oregano, cedar and geranium. To learn more about using essential oils once you’ve made them, try this beginners guide to essential oils.
Steam Distillation of Essential Oils on the Stove
While there are plenty of places online to find complicated instructions for creating a homemade essential oil still using a pressure canner and copper tubing, you can accomplish basic steam distillation with just a steamer basket, mason jar and a pot with a glass or metal lid.
Add about an inch of water to the bottom of a deep pot and place a steamer basket over the water. Place a mason jar inside the pot on top of the steamer basket. A wide mouth pint tends to work well. Chop your herb material and place it on top of the steamer basket, all around the mason jar. Put a lid on the pot upside down. Inside the top of the lid, add some ice or cold water if available (optional).
Turn on the pot and simmer the water. The steam will come up through the herb material and collect inside the lid. It’ll then re-condense on the lid and flow down to the middle of the inverted pot lid, where it will drip down into the mason jar.