The Spirit & Science behind our beloved Essential Oils
by Rebecca Giorgilli
A year ago
Essential oils or aromatic oils as they were once named, haven’t always received the cudos they deserve. For many, they have long been relegated into the realm of hippies and hocus pocus, despite the well documented use of these ancient medicines throughout Egypt, India, China and Europe for many thousands of years.
Once upon a time.. the incense road of antiquity, would carry precious masses of Myrrh and Frankincense, that traversed the rocky terrain, to deliver king and queens of old their rare and highly revered treasures, that were far more precious than gold…
Here at Thalia, we have developed a passionate love affair with these magical essences, not for their pseudo-science or woo-woo, but for completely rational and very scientific reasons.
Essential oils are not actually oils at all, as they do not contain the fatty acids that would constitute this term. Essential oils are powerful, complex & concentrated plant liquids, extracted from a plant’s flowers, seeds, leaves, resin, roots and fruit through a process of distillation. Add them to a formulation of antioxidant rich botanicals, and you have yourself an elixir fit for a queen..
They are so concentrated that to produce even one drop of our radiant Rose Otto essential oil from Bulgaria, can require up to 60 roses, making them one of the most potent forms of plant medicine on the planet.
In 1910, a french cosmetic chemist named Rene-Maurice Gattefosse, discovered the incredible healing properties of lavender when a small explosion occurred in his laboratory. His hands were badly burnt, so he quickly immersed them in the nearest tray of liquid . This liquid was the essential oil of lavender and to his astonishment his hand healed with no infection or scarring.
A Parisian colleague of Gattefosse’s, Jean Valnet also implemented with great success the use of essential oils as antiseptics during the war. When he ran out of anti-biotics, in desperation he began to use essential oils on the injured, which saved many lives. During the outbreak of spanish influenza there were no reported deaths of his hospital personnel. After the war, he continued his use, publishing in 1964 “The Practice of Aromatherapy”, earning him global recognition.
And so it began.. a resurgence in the interest and application of these long forgotten ancient remedies, that not only heal the body, but also offer emotional, mental & spiritual healing to all levels of our being.
Science is now beginning to substantiate what the ancients always knew to be true. With the advancements in modern technology, we are now able to better understand the complexities contained within essential oils, together with their well documented effects.
All true essential oils are complex mixtures of phytochemicals and phytonutrients that work together synergistically. The essential oil of each plant acts as the plant’s immune system, fighting against mold, fungus, viruses and bacteria that could harm the plant, and they protect us in the same way.
Their unique concentrated compounds gives them many antibiotic, antiseptic, anti-fungal, anti-microbial, anti-parasitic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antiviral properties.
They assist us in protecting the mitochondria, by supporting proper cell function. They activate and protect our lymphatic system, boost the immune, circulatory and respiratory systems, remove toxins, dispel inflammation, enhance mood, stimulate cell turnover to provide a broad spectrum of beneficial antioxidants.
True distilled plant oils, purify and perfume our lives. They ground us to the earth, even in the absence of nature, and deeply connect us to human history. Within the beauty of their aroma, there is pure, potent plant medicine. When inhaled, essential oil molecules are absorbed into the blood stream via the lungs, and stimulate the olfactory nerve endings through the nose.
We are all aware of the power scent has to make us swoon. Scent alone can transport us back in space and time, back to a childhood holiday, a grandmother who has passed or a long-forgotten memory.
It does this by effecting the limbic system in the brain, causing the release of neurotransmitters, that influences phychological functions, memory, emotion, the nervous system, pleasure producing endorphins, pain reducing encephalin and many more. The ethereal scents contained within essential oils can evoke powerful emotions that have a calming, stimulating, elevating action within the body, which in turn affects us physically.
We believe here at Thalia, that essential oils really come into their own when absorbed transdermally, sinking directly into the bloodstream, through the skin.
They are lipid-soluble, with molecules so minute, that when applied, they are capable of penetrating skin and cell membranes within minutes of application. Alone, they are some of the world’s most powerful antioxidants, protecting the skin from free radicals, stimulating cell turnover and slowing down the aging process.
Like a fine wine, we understand that certain plants thrive in particular geographical locations, climates, soil conditions and elevations. For some such as Rose or Jasmine, even the time of day they are harvested can impact their heavenly scent and their overall chemistry profile after distillation.
We have made it our mission to deliver to you the world’s very finest offerings of these ancient essences. We prioritise wildcrafted plants native to their geographical locations and grown in soils that have not been tampered with, using only an organic alternative. Wildcrafted plants have been shown to have higher levels of of therapeutic compounds, compared to their cultivated counterparts, due to their greater genetic diversity and ecosystems. This results in what we believe are more pure and powerful plant melodies.
We have embraced modern distillation techniques. A relatively new method of distillation known as Supercritical Extraction or C02, applies the pressure of Carbon Dioxide instead of steam to extract the essential oil. This method is now preferred in certain distillations, as it is known to retain more of the molecules contained within the plant.
Each and every essential oil we have carefully selected, has been chosen for a very specific purpose, each imparting the skin with particular properties that play an integral role in enhancing the health of our skin.
This is just the tip of the iceberg into this truly ancient realm. May this knowledge inspire you to experience for yourself their never-ending array of benefits, that will support you in your inner as well as your outermost life…
To your blossoming xx