Kevin and I work with essential oils more and more every day. We now have three diffusers in different areas of our home, so we are always trying new combinations of essential oils. We also spend most days creating custom blends for our clients. And more recently have been very busy formulating custom energy mists which address emotional/physical imbalances that are stuck in the energetic/auric field. Very exciting work!
When we began our journey in aromatherapy, many of our blends focused on the therapeutic and emotional/energetic properties with less concern on the final aroma. Our new area of focus is making blends that smell nice, work well for their intended use, and hold their aroma in the most balanced way possible.
I have written a couple of articles about top, middle, and base note essential oils in the past and wanted to add a few more comments.
First, let's start with a quick review. The aromas of essential oils are usually categorized as top notes, middle notes, or base notes. Some oils are associated with more than one note such as middle-top notes or middle-base notes, but I’ll stick to top, middle, and base notes for this post.
Top notes - Essential oils that are top notes are usually the oils whose aromas you will notice first in a blend as they are made up of smaller molecules and evaporate the most quickly.
Middle notes - These are also called the heart notes of a blend. They are harmonizing and smooth out the aroma of your blend.
Base notes - Base notes are rich, deep, grounding, warm and earthy. Since these types of essential oils are made of larger molecules, they evaporate slowly and last longer. One really wonderful thing about base notes is they act as fixatives for your top notes.
Let's see how this information would apply to diffusing essential oils using two different methods. In the first method, we’ll add two or more essential oils directly to our diffuser. When using this method each oil is dropped separately into the water and because oil and water don’t mix, the oils will float on top of the water and kind of apart from one another at least initially. So there may be less interaction between each oil. Over the course of a day, you may find the aroma isn’t quite the same as at the start since any top notes will evaporate more quickly.
Now let’s make a blend of 2 or more essential oils without any carrier oils added called a stock bottle. Adding multiple oils into a stock bottle is much like adding individual ingredients to make a pastry. Once blended together, they begin to interact with each other and cannot be separated. In our stock bottle, the chemistry of each of the oils starts to interact with one another and subtile changes happen. You end up with a richer blend and one that will be more stable that produces a more consistent aroma throughout your day.
A great example of this would be combining orange essential oil (top note) to sandalwood (base note) and allowing the blend to sit a couple of day before using it. The base note (sandalwood) will slow down the evaporation of the top note (orange).
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.