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How much Laurus nobilis to use?

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Sagebrush

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I have some bay EO from Essential Depot. It is not bay rum and not bay laurel berry EO...it's Laurus nobilis. I'm wanting to make a soap with it, but can't find any information regarding how much to use. Anybody know or know where I can find information on safe amounts?
 

CanaDawn

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Um....laurel berry IS bay which IS Laurus nobilis, so I'm confused.
I don't know about EO, but with the actual oil, I've seen aleppo soaps containing up to 70% laurel berry oil.
 

DeeAnna

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Bay laurel essential oil is distilled from the leaves of Laurus nobilis, the classic culinary bay.

Bay laurel EO would be used in low dosages appropriate for essential oils -- the rough rule of thumb is up to 3% based on oil weight. That said, Bay laurel EO can be a skin irritant and skin sensitizer, however, so caution is advised. More: http://www.naturesgift.com/essential/descriptiona-b.htm#BAYLAUREL

Hopefully to add some clarity to those who might be reading this besides the OP:

Bay rum fragrance blend does include bay essential oil. Bay laurel EO can be used to make bay rum fragrance, but the unrelated West Indies bay (Pimenta racemosa) is truly the original, traditional ingredient.

Laurel berry oil is pressed from the berry of Laurus nobilis and is basically used as a carrier oil or basic soaping oil, not an essential oil, as CanaDawn explained.
 

CanaDawn

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Bay laurel essential oil is distilled from the leaves of Laurus nobilis, the classic culinary bay.
(snip)

Laurel berry oil is pressed from the berry of Laurus nobilis and is basically used as a carrier oil or basic soaping oil, not an essential oil, as CanaDawn explained.
:oops: I'm not sure I "explained" anything other than my confusion, but thanks for your generosity. :D
 

cmzaha

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I would recommend using a very small percentage. It is a very strong smelling eo and can easily overpower even when using it in a blend
 

Sagebrush

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Thanks DeeAnna and CanaDawn! I think that I was thinking Aleppo soap was made with a specific bay EO instead of the laurel berry carrier oil. So, thanks for decoding my confusing post :)
DeeAnna, your information is very helpful. I'll probably research online a bit more before I make my soap.
 

Sagebrush

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I would recommend using a very small percentage. It is a very strong smelling eo and can easily overpower even when using it in a blend

Thanks, cmzaha! I'll be blending it, so I'll make sure to start with less.
 

Lindy

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Thanks, cmzaha! I'll be blending it, so I'll make sure to start with less.
You'll want to make sure the full blend equals not more than 3%. The reason behind that is essential oils and their blends start becoming therapeutic at 3% to people with compromised immune systems, seniors, children, alcoholics and other addicts. Since we don't know who will be using it, we need to keep that in mind.

People often think that essential oils saponify with the rest of the "oils", the truth is that they don't and they become attached to your superfat. It's the superfat and glycerin that leaves our skin feeling so wonderful because it is still there after we wash our hands. Well the essential oils, which remain therapeutic according to Robert Tisserand, are now on the skin. The skin absorbs up to 40% of what we put on it. Because the molecules of essential oils are so miniscule they are easier for the skin to absorb and go through to the blood stream.

I'm sorry, I expect you weren't looking for an aromatherapy lesson, but I just wanted you to understand why the 3% is your upper limit on essential oils. Some are not allowed to even be that high, and can be as low as 0.4%.
 

CanaDawn

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I'm curious about this repeated assertion that 3% is the therapeutic level for any essential oil. How is it that ALL EOs have the same level at which they become efficacious? Do any require a higher level, or lower? Do they all absorb equally, and all have equally miniscule molecules? What is the use of therapeutic here, and is the same level the point at which adverse effects can be noted, or can that level be lower or higher?

Tisserand discusses synergistic effects and additivity, and so forth, and also mentions oils that should be used at much lower rates than 3% and compares the toxicity of lavender and tea tree to say that tea tree should be kept lower than is ok with lavender, etc. I haven't read his entire works, so perhaps I have missed the part where the 3% figure is used as the universal safety limit for EO.
 
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DeeAnna

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"...I'm curious about this repeated assertion that 3% is the therapeutic level for any essential oil. How is it that ALL EOs have the same level at which they become efficacious?..."

Um, Lindy already explained, "...3% is your upper limit on essential oils. Some are not allowed to even be that high, and can be as low as 0.4%...."

Here's my take on it, CanaDawn. Up to 3% max ppo is a fairly safe dosage level for EOs in soap -- a wash-off product -- if one must give a rule of thumb. If you think about it, 3% ppo is well under 3% by weight of finished product, so that adds a safety factor right there.

Most folks do not get into knowing much more about EOs other than they smell nice. If they're going to use EOs come heck or high water, what rule of thumb can we advise on a public forum that's reasonably safe? There's where the generic 3% ppo thing comes from, IMO. If you're going to give an inexperienced person a loaded gun, give 'em a BB gun, not a loaded 30-30.

In leave-on products, I may use 1% or even less depending on the EO and the intended use. That's where more specific knowledge about the different EOs is helpful. And that's where Tisserand & Co. and a lot more serious study are valuable resources.
 
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CanaDawn

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You missed some of my questions: What do we mean by "therapeutic"? And where do we find these limits noted? If it's "allowed" or not, where would I find that information? There's a wide difference between 3% and the 0.7% I read about for some EOs.

I suppose I should just take it on Lindy's word that that is how EOs should be used, but I am curious about more detail. It's not that I don't understand the concept of "some EOs are more sensitising or more irritating" but "therapeutic" is stalling me, because I don't know why THAT is the restricting characteristic.
 
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Lindy

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Aromatherapy is more than something that smells nice. We all know that Lavender is used to treat burns, but did you know that Anise is a Neural Toxin and can cause epileptic seizure if given at the wrong dose? Let's take a look at Rosemary (be warned I am going to give you an overload of aromatherapy here). It is used for skin & scalp care, it stimulates the nervous system, is an excellent antiseptic and discourages the build-up of acids in the joints.

Principal chemical constituents: There are four main CTs of Rosemary, although up to 8 are known to exist. CTs include Rosemary that is high in Camphor, a-Pinene, 1,8-Cineol, Borneol, and Bornyl acetate. Mainly, the following components are found. Pinene, Camphene, Cineol, Camphor, Borneol, and Sesquiterpenes. B-Caryophyllene are found in rosemary (linalool type). Rosemary Cineol: Main components: cineole, terpene hydrocarbons. Rosemary Verbenone: Main components: ketones (verbenone), cineole, terpene hydrocarbons). Rosemary CT Camphor: Main components: terpene ketone (camphor), terpene oxide (cineol), terpene hydrocarbons.

Characteristics – color/odor: The colour of this oil is pale yellow. The scent is slightly camphoraceous and fresh.

Therapeutic uses: This oil may be beneficial for skin conditions and dandruff. Rosemary restores hair loss and colour. (Note: This is not proven or claimed, possibly just an old wives tale).

Rosemary induces a positive state of mind and emotions. Its aromatic influence stimulates memory and opens the conscious mind because it is an excellent brain stimulant. This oil aids concentration, indecision, procrastination. This oil stimulates and unblocks various systems in the body.

In France it was traditionally used to fumigate sick rooms and hospitals. The practice of burning Rosemary in hospital wards persisted into the present century.

Rosemary oil discourages the build-up of acids in the joints that lead to arthritis.

Rosemary will help itchy skin, dry or sluggish skin and coat on animals (not cats) and helps fight against skin parasites as well.

Rosemary CT Camphor: Neuromuscular action that is variable depending on dose. It helps in the production of bile.

Rosemary CT Cineole: Good for bronchial-pulmonary infections.

Rosemary CT Verbenone: It is especially effective as the beginning mucolytic treatment of bronchial and cold conditions such as chest, lung, infections. An aromatherapy classic, this oil’s regenerating qualities and the way it is tolerated by the skin make it essential for skin care.

Therapeutic properties: Rosemary CT Cineol: Antibacterial especially on staph or strep germs including Eschericia coli.
Rosemary CT Verbenone: Mucolytic.
Rosemary CT Camphor: Neuromuscular

Precautions: Rosemary needs to be emphasised that in normal aromatherapy dosages, there is very little, if any, risk of negative effects with any of the chemotypes.
Rosemary CT Camphor: Rosemary CT Camphor contains oxides and can negate the effects of anesthetic. It is a nonhormonal emmenogogue. Contains ketone; not to be used by children less than 10 years old or pregnant women.
Rosemary CT Cineole: Epileptics should use with caution. If pregnant or under a doctor’s care, consult physician.
Rosemary CT Verbenone: Verbenone is considered an unknown ketone content. Epileptics should use with caution. If pregnant or under a doctor’s care, consult physician. Children less than 10 years old and pregnant women should use with caution.

Extra eucalyptol is often added to rosemary, as well as terpenes from cypress, camphor, eucalyptus, sage and synthetic terpineol.

This goes through the most basic information on Rosemary. I hope that helps to understand the basic therapeutic properties of rosemary.

All essential oils have miniscule particles that are able to bypass the blood brain barrier as well as the placental barrier which is why it is often recommended to avoid using while pregnant because it may not be the mother that is harmed (although with Rosemary because it is an emmenogogue can cause a miscarriage - emmenogogue means to bring on your period or cause the menstrual blood to flow) but it is going directly to the baby whose immune system is simply ready to withstand essential oils.


At 3% as a general guideline we know that people who have a compromised immune system, seniors, children and alcoholics it is therapeutic. For the average healthy person 5% is fully therapeutic and is the general guideline but each essential oil is different. If you were to go into the aromatherapy section here you would find pinned the banned and restricted essential oils which will talk about the limitations of use or percentage, of the extremely dangerous essential oils.

Most babies should not be exposed to any essential oils until they are at least 6 months old, not even an oil burner in their room because, again, their immune system is simply not ready, and this includes lavender.

Sorry this is such a long post, but I want to help you understand how essential oils are used and why we say that 3% is generally accepted as safe. It is far better to study each oil that you want to use so you understand the restrictions and contra-indicators.

This is only part of the information I have on it from my training.
 

Sagebrush

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"I'm sorry, I expect you weren't looking for an aromatherapy lesson, but I just wanted you to understand why the 3% is your upper limit on essential oils. Some are not allowed to even be that high, and can be as low as 0.4%."

Thanks for all the info, Lindy! I'm always looking to learn more...it never hurts to have more education or knowledge about something :)

Usually, when using a new EO I can find info about safe amounts to use, but I wasn't finding anything about bay laurel. Because I had heard that it can be a skin irritant and skin sensitizer (like DeeAnna mentioned as well), I wanted to be extra careful with how much I used.

Thanks everyone for your replies :)
 

CanaDawn

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Ah, ok, I missed where we were talking aromatherapy I think. It's best I bow out of the discussion at this point. Thanks for taking the time to explain your position. :)
 

Lindy

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You missed some of my questions: What do we mean by "therapeutic"? And where do we find these limits noted? If it's "allowed" or not, where would I find that information? There's a wide difference between 3% and the 0.7% I read about for some EOs.

I suppose I should just take it on Lindy's word that that is how EOs should be used, but I am curious about more detail. It's not that I don't understand the concept of "some EOs are more sensitising or more irritating" but "therapeutic" is stalling me, because I don't know why THAT is the restricting characteristic.
Ah, ok, I missed where we were talking aromatherapy I think. It's best I bow out of the discussion at this point. Thanks for taking the time to explain your position. :)
CanaDawn you asked where this information came from that you should just take my word for it. You don't have to take my word for it. Talk to other aromatherapists. Whenever we get talking about essential oils we are automatically talking aromatherapy as that is what it essential oils are for. So if you want to use them then you need to understand them, they're not like a fragrance oil that you can use at 5% and have no therapeutic effect.

At any rate as per your top post quoted here, you are the one who asked where this rate comes from and why.
 

CanaDawn

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CanaDawn you asked where this information came from that you should just take my word for it. You don't have to take my word for it. Talk to other aromatherapists. Whenever we get talking about essential oils we are automatically talking aromatherapy as that is what it essential oils are for. So if you want to use them then you need to understand them, they're not like a fragrance oil that you can use at 5% and have no therapeutic effect.

At any rate as per your top post quoted here, you are the one who asked where this rate comes from and why.
yes, I know I asked, and I thanked you for taking the time to explain. I wasn't thinking aromatherapy
 
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