Aromatherapy and essential oils have been used for centuries in healing and wellness practices, but their popularity has grown significantly in recent years. From being used to relieve stress and help with sleep issues to being used as a form of therapy or even for beauty care, aromatherapy is becoming increasingly commonplace. But what exactly is aromatherapy? And how can essential oils be utilized in the practice? In this article, we explore these questions and provide a reading list of some of the top books on the subject so that you can learn more about aromatherapy and its many uses.
An Overview of Aromatherapy and Essential Oils
Aromatherapy is an alternative medical practice that dates back thousands of years and has been used in many cultures worldwide. It is a holistic approach to health and well-being and involves using essential oils to restore balance within one's body. Essential oils are concentrated extracts of plant matter obtained through a distillation process. These aromatic compounds have a variety of therapeutic properties that can be utilized for healing and wellness purposes.
Modern aromatherapy is used to treat various physical and mental conditions from stress relief to skin care. The main methods of using essential oils are inhalation, massage, and topical application. Inhalation involves inhaling the aroma directly or diffusing it into the air with a diffuser; while topical application involves blending it with other carrier oils or lotions before applying it onto the skin. The benefits of aromatherapy vary depending on the type of essential oil used as each one has its own unique therapeutic properties.
Ultimately aromatherapy provides an effective way to treat certain ailments without resorting to medications or other conventional treatments — making it a great option for those looking for natural remedies.
Best Aromatherapy and Essential Oil Books
When it comes to learning about aromatherapy and essential oils, one of the best ways to do so is by reading books by experts. There are a lot of great reads out there that can help introduce newcomers to the practice, as well as provide more advanced guidance for seasoned practitioners. Here is a list of recommended reading for aromatherapy and essential oil enthusiasts to jump-start your summer reading:
- The Ultimate Guide to Aromatherapy by Amy Galper and Jade Shutes teaches readers the science of aromatherapy and how essential oils interact with our sense of smell, brain pathways, and skin. It also includes over 50 plant profiles, plus recipes and blends for health and beauty.
- The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy by Salvatore Battaglia covers the basics of aromatherapy, from understanding essential oils to blending them for therapeutic use. This book also offers practical advice on storing and safety precautions when using essential oils.
- Essential Oils & Aromatherapy: An Introductory Guide by Sonoma Press provides an introduction to the history and principles of aromatherapy, along with tips for getting started with essential oils. It also includes 300 recipes for your health and home.
For Intermediate-Level Readers:
- Aromatica: A Clinical Guide to Essential Oil Therapeutics by Peter Holmes is an in-depth guide for practitioners looking to expand their knowledge of aromatherapy. The book includes detailed information on over 30 different essential oils, as well as methods for use in massage therapies and other topical applications.
- The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless covers over 182 essential oils, focusing on both their physical properties and medicinal uses. It also offers recipes for blending custom remedies at home using common household ingredients such as carrier oils and honey.
For Advanced Readers:
- The Art of Aromatherapy by Robert Tisserand explores more complex techniques such as incorporating meditation into practice, creating custom blend formulas, and setting up your own treatment room or practice space.
- 375 Essential Oils and Hydrosolsby Jeanne Rose is a comprehensive guide that provides detailed botanic classification and profiles of 375 essential oils, as well as an in-depth look into hydrosols — the real product of distillation.
No matter what level you’re starting from — beginner or expert — there’s something here that can help you learn more about aromatherapy and its many benefits. In addition to aromatherapy books, you can also check out youtube videos and blog posts that specialize in the topic, such as the Professional Aromatherapist, Amy Galper’s youtube channel, and the Cliganic Blog. You can read our full list of articles here.