Does anyone make their own essential oils, and if so, whats an easy to find base oil? I want to make Russian Olive essential oil now that the trees are in bloom so I can have my favorite smell all year round
Most people buy the essential oils and use them in various recipes, for all kinds of things. I've never known of anyone that made their own essential oils. I have dried both herbs and flowers to use in teas, cooking or potpourri. I've heard of people soaking herbs in water, oil or alcohol and then using that liquid. Maybe some of those ideas could be something you could do.
It takes TONS of plant material to make even an ounce of essential oil. You are better off buying it from the companies with the resources to make it. If you are talking about taking a base oil and infusing it with a plant to make a similar scented oil you can do that depending on what you use. This would be called an infused oil and they are easy to make. Just depends on which one you mean.
I found this one with a quick search. It's seems pretty simple.
All you really need is a an oil, some dried herbs, Vitamin E gel gaps, unbleached cheese cloth, and access to a slow cooker or hot pot. I would recommend olive oil because it can withstand the heating process used to make essential oils. Some people also use sweet almond or jojoba oils for this purpose. The Vitamin E gel caps will serve as a natural preservative for your essential oils.
Here's how to make your own essential oil:
1. Mix 1/2 ounces of bulk herbs of your choice with 2 cups of oil.
2. Stir thoroughly.
3. Add the mixture to your slow cooker and allow it to heat on very low heat (around 140 degrees) for 5-7 hours.
4. Remove the mixture from the crock pot and strain with your unbleached cheese cloth.
5. Place the strained liquid into a clean Mason jar and label it appropriately with the type of essential oil and the date. Dating your essential oil is important since the shelf life is about 6-8 months.
6. Store in a cool, dark area.
Keep in mind these oils are for use on your skin only and are not for oral ingestion.
That is whats called an infused oil not an essential oil. The two have similar properties but essential oils do not have any base oil in them. They are purely the oils found in the plant they are from.
Herbal infused oils
Herbal infused oils are made by steeping the plant material in oil, and keeping the infusion warm over a period of time to extract the beneficial constituents of the herb. In the past, herbal infused oils were extensively used for all medicinal, cosmetic and perfumery applications.
Infused oils are similar to essential oils, in that they have many of the same properties, and can also retain the benefits of other plant constituents that are not present in essential oils. Herbal infused oils can effectively replace essential oils when the herb or plant materials have a very low yield in volatile constituents, and would therefore be too expensive for the production of essential oils. Another advantage of herbal infused oils is that they can be easily prepared at home, and do not require any special equipment. Also, because they are not as concentrated as essential oils are, infused oils can often be used without further dilution.
To build your own still is no problem, even with kitchen staff you can get a good result. A laboratory flask is not a good idea because the flask is too narrow, parts of the steam will condense on the inside wall, resulting in losses of quality and amount. Distilling app. 500 g lavender you get 10 ml essential oil.
The best book for distilling essential oils at home: