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The Ultimate Guide to Carrier Oils and How Best to Use Them

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The Ultimate Guide to Carrier Oils and How Best to Use Them

When I was pregnant with my second child, I had severe hip and lower back pain. Towards the end of my pregnancy, I couldn’t sleep through the night because my hips were so sore. I finally gave prenatal massage a try and it was a miracle worker! The lady I went to used the trigger point method and it kept the pain away. During these sessions, she would use a lavender and peppermint essential oil blend to relax the muscles. I don’t usually like scented oils, but this one was so relaxing and the peppermint really felt like it was penetrating the muscles and relaxing my whole body. It was my first experience with essential oils and I’ve been hooked ever since. I’ve created this Ultimate Guide to Carrier Oils so that you can have the same experience at home!

The night after my first massage, I went home and started researching ways to make massage oil. There is so much information out there that is easily becomes overwhelming. In the end, I figured out that was going to need essential oils mixed with a carrier oil. But what carrier oil should I be using? I decided to start with almond oil, lavender essential oil and peppermint essential oil. Certain carrier oils work best with specific essential oils, so you will want to look in to it once you figure out which essential oils you will be using.

The list below represents the most popular carrier oils. I have had success with carrier oils, however, I do not apply these to my children. There are several cold remedies that recommend topical use on children, but I really caution against it. Their skin is so thin that they really absorb the oil. No carrier oil is safe for ingestion..


Almond oil is one of the most popular carrier oils. It is also a great choice if you are new to carrier oils. I would recommend you use Almond oil to dilute essential oils for topical use because of its mildness and lack of irritants to all kinds of skin types. It contains high amounts of vitamin E, so it is especially good for the skin and hair, and is often used in oil blends specific to massage such as geranium or lavender. It can also be used on its own to help with skin regeneration. Do not use if you are allergic to nuts..


Argan oil is another oil that is beneficial for your hair and skin. It has grown in popularity in recent years and has been showing up in commercial shampoos. It is especially effective in improving the health and quality of curly, coarse or dry hair and contains unique plant sterols that are said to help fight the signs of aging and restore lost water to aging skin. Argan oil is commonly used in cosmetics. It is often added to hair blends along with essential oils such as chamomile and clary sage. For anti-aging products, it can be found with oils like frankincense and helichrysum.


Castor oil is a very thick carrier oil that is also acceptable for all skin types. It is used in both hair and skin formulas, and is very easily absorbed into the skin, making it an ideal oil for pain management, especially with arthritis and muscle aches. Castor oil is a perfect addition to blends for arthritis including essential oils like eucalyptus and ginger and also for blends for muscle pain including oils like marjoram and juniper.


Probably the most well-known and widely used carrier oil today, coconut oil is ideal for all skin types. It has a myriad of uses. When applied topically, it is great for moisturizing the driest of skin and for preventing premature aging and wrinkles. When used to treat dry skin, coconut oil can also be blended with essential oils such as neroli and rose. It is has also been said to help prevent the spread of certain bacteria and viruses.


Emu oil is derived from the fat of the emu and has been widely used for muscle pain and inflammation. This oil has so many uses, I can’t cover them all in one paragraph! Some people like to use it for ailments such as sciatica (I wish I knew about this when I was pregnant!), carpal tunnel, shin splints and gout. It is also used for skin ailments like acne, eczema, bruising, burns, and more. It is effective at relieving dry and cracked skin and mimics the moisturizing properties of mineral oil. Emu oil is a necessary component of oil blends for inflammation including essential oils like bergamot and vetiver, and of oil blends for acne including oils like tea tree and clary sage.


Due to the fact that grapeseed oil has no smell, it is perfect for use in all kinds of essential oil blends. It is high in antioxidants, and is said to be effective in protection from UV rays. It absorbs very quickly without leaving your skin oily and is one of the lightest carrier oils on the market. I use Born Skincare products, and grapeseed oil is their main ingredient in their awesome skin repairing oil.t is ideal for use in blends for skin protection with essential oils like lavender and peppermint, or combining with aloe vera and red raspberry seed oil for a highly potent UV protectant and skin nourisher.


Jojoba oil is another very popular carrier oil for both skin and hair. It absorbs quickly, and has a lot of benefits due to its unique properties. This carrier oil won’t spoil easily due to its high vitamin E content, and it helps to balance the moisture in your scalp which relieves dandruff and dry or itchy scalp issues. It is the perfect oil for use in blends specifically for the treatment of scalp issues and hair growth including oils such as cedarwood and lemon, or rosemary and lemongrass.


Moringa seed oil is high in antioxidants and it has a long shelf life. It is becoming more popular today in cosmetic and skin care use because of its light consistency. Moringa seed oil contains zinc and copper, which are believed to be beneficial to the skin. It is a wonderful addition to essential oil blends intended to improve your skin’s complexion and providing a natural glow. It is typically mixed with essential oils such as jasmine and ylang ylang.


Neem oil is an exotic oil used for both hair and skin and it has a very distinct (awful) scent. But if you can ignore the scent,you will be amazed at how effective neem oil is in transforming dull and lifeless hair into a full and healthy head of hair! Mix it with essential oils of your choice (such as rosemary or chamomile) and use in your hair. Neem oil also has an astringent effect on the skin and is used to treat eczema, burns, rashes and acne. When used as an astringent, neem oil can be blended with essential oils like myrtle and patchouli.


Rosehip seed oil is rich in vitamin A and antioxidants and has often been touted as the secret to beautiful skin by models and actresses. The Egyptians used it for beauty and it can also be found in skincare products today. Rosehip oil helps to reduce stretch marks as well as scars and other imperfections of the skin. It is a very light oil and is easily absorbed in to the skin. It is best used in blends for stretch marks and other types of scars including essential oils such as clary sage and neroli.


Sesame seed carrier oil should not be confused with the cooking oil! This carrier oil is full of antioxidants and is very forgiving! It is used for all kinds of hair issues and even some skin ailments. Sesame Seed oil is a dominant oil and should be mixed with another carrier oil or it may overpower your blend. It CAN darken the hair with continued use, so it is not suggested if you have light hair. It can be used in blends for strong and healthy hair including essential oils like rosemary and chamomile.

Which one will you try first?

There are many more carrier oils that aren’t listed here, but this Ultimate list of Carrier Oils list will get your started! Explore the many ways of using each of these oils. They can all be used on their own, or blended with other carrier oils.

Which one are you going to try? Let me know what you think.

Find me on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. I’d love to connect!

Check out some of these blends: Pumpkin Spice Essential oil Blend  or 7 Essential oils to Spookify your Halloween

Also check out our Rosehip and HIbiscus Tea recipe!

Most carrier oils pose no harm of allergy or irritation applied to the skin due to their healthy and light nature, but caution should always be used when using any new substances on or in your body. Also, none of the statements or uses above are evaluated or supported by the FDA, and different people may experience different results, though these are typical.

By on August 30th, 2017

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