Understanding Cold-Pressed Olive Oil
Yes, cold-pressed olive oil can indeed be used as a carrier oil in aromatherapy. Cold-pressed olive oil, commonly referred to as EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil) in the market, is an excellent base for essential oils used in therapeutic practices.
Qualities of a Good Carrier Oil
- Neutral Aroma: Carrier oils should have a minimal or non-conflicting scent. EVOO has a mild, fruity aroma that doesn’t interfere with the properties of essential oils.
- Absorption: Ideal carrier oils must absorb well into the skin. EVOO, with its high oleic acid content, penetrates the skin effectively.
- Shelf Life: Carrier oils should have a long shelf life. The shelf life of EVOO is typically 18-24 months, making it a durable choice.
Benefits of Using Cold-Pressed Olive Oil in Aromatherapy
Owing to its chemical composition, EVOO provides various benefits when used as a carrier oil:
- Packed with Antioxidants: EVOO is rich in antioxidants like polyphenols and vitamin E, protecting skin from premature aging and environmental damage.
- Anti-Inflammatory Properties: It offers soothing effects, thanks to its anti-inflammatory compounds like oleocanthal.
- Moisturizing: Its emollient properties make it an effective moisturizer, helping to maintain skin hydration during aromatherapy sessions.
Cold-Pressed Olive Oil vs Other Carrier Oils
While EVOO is a good choice, comparing it with other carrier oils is essential to understand its positioning:
- EVOO vs Jojoba Oil: Jojoba is lighter and less greasy, but EVOO outperforms it in antioxidative properties.
- EVOO vs Coconut Oil: Coconut oil has a longer shelf life but it solidifies at lower temperatures unlike EVOO.
- EVOO vs Almond Oil: Almond oil is slightly more absorbent, yet EVOO is richer in antioxidants.