A couple weeks ago, a friend asked me why Lost Remedy doesn’t use fragrance in our topicals. I told her the chemicals in fragrance are toxic to our bodies and the environment. She agreed, but said what about essential oils. Aha, I thought, a potential blog. Let’s take a look at how we combine CBD, carrier and essential oils to the make the most effective topicals.
But first, let me give you a quick tutorial on fragrance so you understand our concern about using it.
According to the Food and Drug Administration, products are required to list their ingredients so people know what they are applying. Except when it comes to fragrance. Whatever has been used to make a product smell good needs to only be listed as fragrance. Generally the ingredient list is an undisclosed mixture of chemicals, which often includes diethyl phthalate, used to make plastic more flexible. The toxic soup of chemicals that is called fragrance is often associated with allergies, dermatitis, respiratory distress and potential effects on the reproductive system.
But, as I mentioned, it’s not just our bodies that are affected. An article in Forbes, based on a study led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), talks about how the chemicals used in health and beauty products affect our air quality. According to NOAA scientist Jessica Gilman, “Volatile chemical products used in common solvents and personal care products are literally designed to evaporate. You wear perfume or use scented products so that you or your neighbor can enjoy the aroma.”
It’s estimated that 40 percent of chemicals known as volatile organic compounds from cosmetics, soaps and paints disperse into the air where they react in the atmosphere to form the harmful pollutants.
CBD and essential oils
Each essential oil has unique properties that help determine how we use it. At the same time, carrier oils also have unique properties that help determine how to pair the essential and carrier oils. For instance, how easily can the carrier oil be absorbed? Does it have antioxidant properties? Anti-aging properties? Is it a humectant, which attracts and retains moisture? All these are taken into consideration before we even create the product.
Our CBD-infused products use essential oils and carrier oils to enhance the beneficial properties of cannabinoids. Both, when combined with CBD, jump-start the CBD receptors already present in our bodies (See Cannabinoids and You). Combining the essential and carrier oils with CBD makes each product most effective.
As has already been noted, CBD on its own is a real boon to our bodies. It has been used for centuries as a nutritional supplement, among other things. Essential oils, too, have been used medicinally for centuries. But, essential oils themselves are pretty strong and if you have sensitive skin, direct application could cause a reaction. Plus, diluting the essential oil in a carrier oil may increase the therapeutic benefits for two reasons.
First, essential oils are extremely volatile and tend to evaporate quickly. So, before it is even absorbed into the skin, a good chunk of it evaporates into the air. Now, given the expense of essential oils, to have most of it evaporate before the benefits can be achieved seems counterproductive. Enter the fatty carrier oil, which doesn’t evaporate at all. It will contain the essential oil and as your skin absorbs it, the benefits of all the oils are absorbed with it.
Second, by settling an essential oil into a carrier oil, such as fractionated coconut oil, sweet almond oil, avocado oil or other such oils, allows you to spread the essential oil over a more of your body, helping absorb it into a larger area.
CBD essential oil combinations
If you are familiar with aromatherapy, you may know that each essential oil has a fragrance that heralds its healing properties.
Take lavender, for instance. On its own, it is a relaxant; paired with CBD it heightens the anticonvulsant and anti-inflammatory properties. Argan oil works wonders on nourishing and healing the skin, so it’s an important ingredient in our skin care products. You can see that each oil is chosen with an eye on its healthful qualities, not for making its smell.
Because each essential oil has a unique fragrance, combining several with the CBD and carrier oils (think almond, avocado, etc.) creates a fragrance all its own. Many of our chemical-free products give off an earthy, musky smell that dissipates quickly.
I hope this brief explanation helps you understand that Lost Remedy does want you to smell good, but we’re not basing our products on helping you do that. Feel free, however, to use the contact us function on our website if you want more information or have further questions about our products. We’ll be happy to respond quickly and thoroughly.