Aromatherapy Blending Tips~ When to Use Blend Equalizers, Modifiers,Enhancers and Natural Extenders

7:43 PM Posted by Jo Pedranti

                                     

Blending essential oils can be tricky and it requires practice. I learned long time ago that it is a good idea to write down the recipes of the blends so you remember the great ones. 

Blend Equalizers
If your blend is not smooth and has some sharp edges then it's a good idea to consider using blend equalizers. Blend equalizers are the essential oils that will smooth out the sharp edges in a blend. According to Battaglia, Lavabre says the essential oils of sweet orange, Spanish marjoram, fir, tangerine, pine and rosewood are considered equalizers. If your blend contains cineole rich essential oils Lavabre suggests that fir and pine needle are ideal to use.

Blend equalizers will balance the blend and this will make the blend flow harmoniously. The equalizers' main purpose is to hold the blend together without having any or very little effect on the blend's personality. Battaglia says equalizers  can be used in large amounts, if blend modifiers are also used then equalizers can be used up to 50%.

Blend Modifiers
If you realize that your blend is flat and uninteresting then it may be a good idea to add a drop of a modifier. Blend modifiers will contribute to its unique personality as well as give the blend a lift. Some modifiers are cinnamon, peppermint, clove, vetiver, cistus and German Chamomile. Even when used in small amounts the modifiers can influence the overall aroma of the blend, so it is suggested by Battaglia to use them sparingly. Don't use more than 3%.

Blend Enhancers
Blend enhancers can slightly modify a blend without overpowering it. They have a pleasant aroma and Battaglia says they can be used up to 50%. Geranium, bergamot, clary sage, cedarwood, lavender, may chang, spruce, lime, lemon, lavender, palmarosa, jasmine, myrrh, rose otto, neroli are considered blend enhancers according to Battaglia.

Natural Extenders
When you use expensive essential oils such as rose, jasmine and neroli you want to take advantage of their exquisite aroma. Battaglia says that Lavabre recommends using natural extenders to make the blend more affordable. The natural enhancers should be compatible with the expensive essential oils of course. 
Battaglia shares a formula that shows how it is possible to maintain the equisite rosy aroma of a blend by adding two less expensive essential oils with rosy and floral aroma. Battaglia chooses to add the less expensive essential oils of rosewood and palmarosa  as natural extenders to a rose absolute blend. He is using patchouli as a base note which has a rich, sweet and earthy aroma.
Palmarosa 10%
rose absolute 20%
rosewood 60%
patchouli 10%

 Essential oils are expensive and it is annoying when you create blends that don't turn out so well. Hopefully the tips mentioned above will be useful. Happy Blending!



Before you leave:

I recommend that you always perform a skin patch test when you try a new oil on your skin.

Check out my safety page to make sure you are aware of any contrindications before you use essential oils. Some oils are not suitable when suffering from certain conditions. Also, Read this Before You Start Using Essential oils. Some oils should not be applied prior to sun exposure so make sure you check this list before spending time in the sun.

Not sure how to apply the oils? Visit these pages to learn how to apply the oils:
If you're new to essential oils you might want to check out my Getting Started Guide. 

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Johanna is an aromatherapist and she is passionate about educating people about health, essential oils, real food, natural remedies, and nutrition so they make healthier choices in their lives. 
Follow Johanna on twitter and facebook for more health tips and information.


Sources:
Salvatore Battaglia (2003) The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy Second Edition.The International Centre of Holistic Aromatherapy.

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