I’ve been writing about essential oils for the past four years now and I have yet to do a full series on using essential oils! To remedy this, I’ll be posting articles all month on the proper usage, different types of usage, and overall general information on essential oils.
Today I’m starting with one of my most frequently asked questions: “How do I diffuse essential oils?”.
So let’s talk diffusing. This post will be an explanation of diffusing, diffusing benefits, different diffuser recipes, different types of diffusers, and (of course!) how to difuse!
Please note: this post contains affiliate links.
What is diffusing
Diffusing is one of the many ways to use essential oils. In basic terms, diffusing is allowing essential oils to escape into the air and inhaling them to reap the benefits of each specific oil.
It’s a wonderful method to use if you have sensitive skin or if you plan to use the oils in low dilution. Not to mention, diffusing makes your home smell amazing.
There are several way s to diffuse essential oils, the easiest being to simply place several drops in a small bowl and inhale. This method works well if you plan to be sitting in one spot for some time, but it’s not the best way to diffuse oils.
I prefer to use a diffuser, which I’ll discuss later. There are several types of diffusers that range from a few dollars to hundreds. Choosing the right diffuser for your budget and usage is very important.
When you use an essential oil diffuser, you effectively distribute essential oils into the air over a prolonged amount of time. This is important because it helps you increase the reach and effectiveness of the oils.
What are the benefits to diffusing
There are numerous benefits to diffusing essential oils. Here are just a few:
- Diffusing can be a safe method for individuals who have sensitive skin
- Respiratory issues respond well to diffusing oils
- Essential oils are spread to a greater area
- Essential oils are released over time
- Custom blends are easy to make in a diffuser
- You only need a few drops of essential oils thus saving money and resources
- Diffusers work well in office space and homes as a substitute for toxic air fresheners
- Essential oils can help kill germs and airborne microbes (great for cold and flu season!)
- Diffusing deodorize your home
How do I choose an essential oil diffuser
There are SO many essential oil diffusers on the market that it is really tough to choose which one will be right for you.
When it comes to choosing a diffuser, I have several no-nos:
- Heat/Cooling diffusers – modifying the temperature of essential oils can change their properties. You’ll want a diffuser that uses room temperature water with no temperature change
- Essential oil diffusers that hook up to the actual bottle of oils – these diffusers often use up oils quickly AND you can’t control exactly how many drops you put in the diffuser.
It’s a small list, but I think those are pretty important. Overall, I’d advise to go with what fits your budget best and the product reviews.
That being said, here’s what I’ve chosen to use:
- General diffusing: I have been using our Classic Ultrasonic Diffuser for the past three years and it works wonderfully still!
- Air freshening: We also use one of these wall diffusers for our bathroom (think plug in air freshener BUT with essential oils).
- Car: These are actually mini diffusers that plug into your car.
How to diffuse essential oils
Each diffuser has different guidelines, so please read them before using.
To reap the best benefits from your essential oil diffuser:
- Diffuse no more than 2-5 drops of oils at a time. Too much will give you a headache, so always err on the side of less, especially if you are using a new blend or new oils.
- Don’t sit too close. You want to maintain at least a foot or two between you and the diffuser (remember ultrasonic diffusers are capable of spreading essential oils throughout a large room)
- Don’t diffuse for too long. Many diffusers recommend that you inhale no longer than one hour and some blends should be kept to 20 minutes or less.
- Be mindful of who is in the room. Some people are very sensitive to different smells. Additionally, not all essential oils are safe for pregnant or nursing women and children. Only use child and pregnancy safe blends around these individuals.
Keeping these diffuser considerations in mind, I still think diffusing is one of my favorite methods of essential oil application. I’ll share with you my diffuser method below:
How to diffuse:
- Do a patch test for allergies/sensitivities if you are using an oil you’ve never encountered before (dab a small amount on of the essential oil you plan to use on your wrist. If no reaction occurs, it should be safe to diffuse)
- Add 2-5 drops of oils to a diffuser (follow diffuser guidelines).
- Run diffuser for 30 minutes then shut off
- Clean diffuser according to manufacturer guidelines
- Allow diffuser to dry and wait 1 day before diffusing again.
Essential Oil Diffuser Recipes
This is an easy one! I’ve already compiled a list of 50 Essential Oil Diffuser Recipes . This list gives you so many great choices for every mood and many different ailments.
Do you have a favorite recipe? I’d LOVE to hear it below!