It’s What’s in the Mix? Wednesday!
What’s in the Mix? Blending Ideas and Prompts is a weekly exercise designed to spark your imagination and get your creative juices flowing. Each week you’ll find a question, a suggestion or a prompt that will help you identify where you’re stuck, where you are flowing and where you need more education. Mostly, prompts are just fun!
About This Week’s Prompt: If you are serious about your work as an aromatherapist and want to use essential oils for their maximum therapeutic benefit, I strongly suggest you learn what they are made of. The only way you can know what they are made of is through GC/MS analysis of the essential oil.
GC/MS stands for Gas Chromatography and Mass Spectrometry.
Gas Chromatography (GC) is a method of separating the volatile compounds in essential oils into individual components. Mass Spectrometry (MS) identifies each of these components and their percentages.This process can also tell us if the essential oil has been adulterated. All the main components and some of the trace components will be listed on these reports.
Please note that the information you receive on a GC/MS analysis report is NOT the same as that given on an Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). Many essential oil distributors will offer you their MSDS.
A Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) is intended to provide workers and emergency personnel with procedures for handling or working with that substance in a safe manner, and includes information such as melting point, toxicity, storage, disposal, protective equipment, and spill-handling procedures.
The precise breakdown of the chemical components in an individual oil is SO important! Why? Because the therapeutic benefits and safety issues of an essential oils are determined by their chemical composition. This process is vital for medicinal blending and quality assurance!
You can expect to pay a little more for essential oils that have been GC/MS batch-specific tested, but it is money well spent when you want purity and the best results possible from your blends.
Now go and call the person who you buy your essential oils from and inquire if their oils are batch-specific GC/MS tested!
Share your stories in the Comments section below. Let’s teach and inspire each other! By sharing our stories, we might give someone a great idea for how to use a blend, and someone might give YOU a great idea. Who knows, maybe you’ll become inspired to create a new product or an entire product line from something that is sparked by this exercise.