Carrier oils, also known as base oil or vegetable oil, is applied to dilute essential oils help carry them into the skin. Carrier Oils generally contain ingredients such as fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients that improve the look and feel of skin and hair by adding moisture, soothing irritation, and reducing the effects of dryness.
Carrier oil for essential oils are obtained mostly from nuts and seeds. Cold Pressing, Expeller Pressing, Oil Maceration, and Solvent Extraction are most common extraction process. A high-quality organic carrier oil will be as natural and pure as possible, preferably cold-pressed, because fragile nutrients in the oil can be damaged if they are extracted with heat.
Although it may seem counterintuitive, diluting essential oils is necessary for their effective use, which is why Carrier Oils are essential. Applying undiluted essential oils, known as using them "neat," can cause skin sensitization, allergic reactions due to their concentrated nature, rapid evaporation from the skin's surface without a carrier oil to aid penetration, and difficulty spreading them over a larger skin area. While there are exceptions, it is generally best to dilute pure carrier oil to avoid harm, as using them neat can render them ineffective and waste the effort and money invested. Carrier Oils not only enhance essential oil absorption but also provide therapeutic benefits through nourishing constituents like essential fatty acids that our bodies cannot produce.