Diluting Essential Oils Safely – safe dilution guidelines by age group

Diluting essential oils is done by adding a drop (or more) of the essential oil into a carrier oil.

The it absorbs into the skin and also spreads the oil over a larger surface of your skin.

Knowing how to dilute properly will help you use essential oils safely.

There are 2 very good reasons that we dilute essential oils

  1. to avoid skin reactions such as irritation, sensitization, and phototoxicity,
  2. to avoid systemic toxicity.

Here are a few general guidelines for diluting essential oils safely.

Please be aware that these are general guidelines and there may be other factors that are present which would over-ride these.

It is important that you always use the lowest dilution possible that gives you effective results.

Diluting by Age Group

6 months – 24 months – avoid unless urgent

Please only use for this age group in an urgent situation, such as a bee sting or bug bite. Otherwise, avoid using essential oils topically for children under age 2, and use herbs or hydrosols instead.

2 – 6 years – 0.25% Dilution (1 drop per 4 teaspoons of carrier oil)

Hydrosols and herbs are still a good choice for this age group, and should be considered before essential oils. It is okay to use essential oils if properly diluted for children in this age group.

Over 6 years of age – 1% dilution (1 drop per teaspoon of carrier oil; 6 drops per
ounce)

This dilution is recommended for children over age 6, women that are pregnant, elderly adults, and also people that may have sensitive skin or other serious health issues. This is also the dilution that you should use when you are applying to the face or doing a massage

Healthy adult – 2% dilution (2 drops per teaspoon of carrier oil; 12 drops per ounce)

Ideal for most adults and is also a good dilution for daily skin care.

Acute/Temporary health problems – 3% – 10% dilution (2-20 drops per teaspoon of carrier oil; 12-120 drops per ounce)

Best used short term for a temporary health issue, such as a soft tissue injury (think sprains and
strains).