The oils are grouped into categories according to their type, known as Top, Middle or Base Notes. It is useful to have some idea of which group the oils fall into so that when you blend them together, you can create a balanced blend or one to suit what you need - do you need an uplift or grounding a bit, your head clearing, a good night's sleep? Remember to consider your emotional needs as well as the physical. Stress affects us in different ways, mentally, physically and emotionally - do you get headaches, hyperactive, aching shoulder muscles, fatigue, depressed, irritable? If you are feeling a bit down, use a top note but if you are hyperactive and need grounding, avoid a top note and use middle and base notes. You may not always know what you need, so trust your intuition. If there are any scents that bring up bad memories for you, avoid them.


These oils have a light, uplifting scent and include the citrus oils, Clary Sage, Sweet Thyme, Basil Linalol and Eucalyptus Blue Gum. Their scent is the first to be smelt in the blend and fastest to disappear. They have the highest evaporation rate.


These oils form the bulk of the blend, the heart of it, and their scent emerges later. These oils include Black Pepper, Lavender, the Chamomiles, Geranium, Cypress, Juniper, Sweet Marjoram, Melissa, Peppermint, Pine, Rosemary and Yarrow.


These oils help to fix the lighter oils so they don't disappear too quickly, their scent is the last to emerge from the blend and their effect longer lasting. These oils include Cedar Atlas, Benzoin, Frankincense, Myrrh, Ginger, Rose, Jasmine, Orange Blossom (Neroli), Patchouli, Sandalwood, Ylang Ylang, Valerian and Vetiver.


The best way to get essential oils into the body is by massage, either the whole body or parts of it.

Never use more than 8 drops of essential oil in your mix, regardless of the amount of base oil(s) used. Choose the base oils that will be most helpful to you and blend a couple together if needed, adding the lighter oil to the heavier. Remember the rule from Dosage and if you are doing only head and shoulders or the back, cut the amount of drops of essential oils to suit the amount of base oil being used.

You need a small container with a screw top lid to give the base oil and essential oils a good shake to ensure that they are well blended before use.

Following the massage, it is important to keep warm so wear long sleeves and legs and this helps to prevent the oils evaporating too quickly from your skin.

No bath or shower should be taken after a massage for that day, to allow the oils to sink in fully. Have one beforehand if you wish.


Add 4 to 6 drops of essential oil/oils to warm running water, get in and lie back for 20 minutes or so. The secret is to breathe deeply. The essential oils enter the body via the sense of smell.

If you have blended the oils into a bath crème/milk, just add as normal to your bath and inhale the lovely scent.


You can use a hot or cold compress, depending on what is needed.

Hot compress - for stiffness, to warm. Add 6 drops of your oil to a small bowl of hand hot water, soak pads of cotton, squeeze out and apply to the area to be treated. When the cloth has cooled, put back into the hot water and reapply as necessary.

Cold Compress - use for cooling e.g. for headaches, sprains. Add 6 drops of oil to a small bowl of cold water, soak pads of cotton, squeeze out and apply to area. When it reaches body temperature, refresh in the cold water and reapply as necessary.


Put some of your shower gel containing your oils onto a sponge and rub briskly over your body, again breathing deeply to take in the scent of the oils.

Foot Bath

Add 2-6 drops of your oil to a foot bath of warm water, whisk with your hand to help disperse the oil and soak your feet for 20 minutes. Lovely for tired feet after a busy day or a long walk. Then rub in some foot cream containing the same essential oils.

Hand Bath

2-6 drops of your oil(s) to a bowl of warm water. Soak your hands for about 10 minutes, dry thoroughly and apply hand cream containing the same oil(s).

Tissue/hankerchief Inhalation

If you have a cold, sore throat, 'flu, sinusitis or hayfever, put 1 drop of your essential oil onto a tissue and gently inhale from it as necessary. When resting, you can leave the tissue beside the bed so the oils carry on acting as you breathe.

Oil burner

Add 1-6 drops of your oil/oils to water on the top of the burner, place a tea light underneath and the scent of the oils will fill the air.

Do not leave these burners unattended as essential oils are flammable.


Blend 4-6 drops of essential oil with your water and sprinkle over the hot rocks. The scent of the oils will come up with the steam.


Add 4-6 drops of your chosen essential oil(s) to the water, lie back and enjoy the scents.

Flame the Dragon by Amanda Penrose