As I was making a custom blend for a client yesterday, it dawned on me what a different direction I took with it then what the client actually asked for.
I had written an email to all my clients about a week ago explaining which oils I had on sale. Two of which happened to be Tea Tree Melaleuca alternifolia and Peppermint Mentha piperita which, because Tea Tree is antifungal & deodorizing and Peppermint cooling & invigorating, I stated that it is wonderful to combine into a lotion for the feet. A client wrote back asking me to make her a foot lotion with Tea Tree and Peppermint. I asked if she needed it to be antifungal or if there were there any other reasons. She said she needed something antifungal as well as something for her dry, cracked heels. Well, that changed everything.
Due to it’s extremely high level of Sesquiterpenes, there is no other essential oil that is better for dry cracked heels than Myrrh Commiphora myrrha. The problem is, Myrrh does not blend well with Tea Tree or Peppermint aroma-wise. While the first thing to take into consideration with Clinical Aromatherapy is the therapeutic action of the oils, one still wants to try to make the aroma pleasant (or at least somewhat pleasant!) for the mind and spirit. Since Myrrh is amazing for cracked feet AND is a strong antifungal, it really had to be the main ingredient for this blend while basing all other oil choices around it. Geranium Pelargonium graveolens and Lavender Lavandula angustifolia are high in Monoterpenols – just like Tea Tree and Peppermint- which is why I chose them. As an added bonus they blend really well with Myrrh and are antifungal, antibacterial, cooling and cell-regenerative for the skin. I chose Lemongrass Cymbopogon citratus because of its high Aldehyde content (making it very antifungal) as well as it’s cooling, antiseptic, deodorizing quality. Monoterpene rich Pine Pinus sylvestris was added as an extra antiseptic and deodorizing oil and plus, I just thought the aroma would work nicely. And it did.
This is what makes essential oils so much fun. I didn’t always feel that way towards their versatility though. When I first began my studies with essential oils, I found it a bit frustrating and overwhelming to learn that oils share many of the same therapeutic properties that can overlap one another. I mean, if Tea Tree and Geranium are both antifungals which one do I use when? I wanted concrete characteristics so I could assign what oil is good for what. But they don’t work that way and the above blend shows the beauty & benefits of that ability. The clients individual needs, chemical families, aromas & type of application all play a part in which oils to choose. Because there are many oils that are antibacterial, antifungal, cooling, antiseptic, deodorizing and soothing to the skin, I was able to mix and match making the blend personal and much more effective in the end.