Aromatherapy isn’t as simple as many make it out to be. Time and time again I see people just randomly mixing essential oils and not doing basic safety. There are so many oils that have maximum dermal rates (the highest dilution numbers that are safe to put on the skin), as well as not using carrier oils or not properly diluting essential oils. All this can be a sure fire ticket to having sensitivity issues, phototoxicity, and can lead to chemical burns.

A little research and you’ll be able to check on whether that Pinterest recipe is a safe bet or a recipe in disaster. As a rule of thumb, a 10 ml roller bottle or tablespoon of carrier oil should have between 3 and 9 drops of essential oils total. The three drops would be a 1% solution which is good for long term use or the elderly, the six drops would be for any healthy person who is not pregnant or breastfeeding and over the age of 14, while the 9 drops is a 3% dilution which is good for more chronic usage.

If you are using a diffuser, a good rule of thumb is 1-4 drops per 100 ml of water. You will want essential oils without a carrier base, as carrier oils are not meant for a diffuser. Also, the 1-4 drops is total drops, so you may need to make what is called a master blend before diffusing. To do this, mix all the drops of different essential oils that you want and then take that master blend and add 1-4 drops of it to the diffuser. This keeps you from having to work in fractions of drops.

Here are five good recipes to get you started. These can be added to a 10 ml roller bottle and filled with a carrier oil to use as a perfume or can be used in a diffuser without diluting in any carrier oil.

Clover Patch – 2 drops Rosemary, 2 drops Spearmint, 1 drop Sweet Orange

Coastal Waters – 2 drops Cedarwood, 2 drops Frankincense, 2 drops Sweet Orange, 1 drop Rosemary

Flower Garden – 2 drops Lemon, 2 drops Rosemary, 3 drops Lavender

Freshen Up – 2 drops Lavender, 2 drops Rosemary, 2 drops Lemon

Good Morning – 2 drops Sweet Orange, 2 drops Lime, 2 drops Peppermint

These are safe blends when used in a diffuser or diluted in at least 10 ml of carrier oil if worn topically.

Alternatively, if you don’t have a diffuser, you can mix these recipes in with coarse mineral salt and put in a dish to passively diffuse in the home.

Namaste to each and every one of you readers in the best little city in Georgia.

Tina Samuels, a native of Rome, is a local yoga instructor and shiatsu bodywork therapist. Readers can contact her at