The Art of Aromatherapyan introduction to some of the
common essential oils often used in massage

( more oils will be added )

Many plants, flowers and wood resins contain glands filled with a volatile and aromatic oil that is commonly called an essential oil. By volatile we mean an oil that quickly evaporates on contact with air in contrast to a fatty oil that sinks and tends to penetrate the surface on which it falls. For example if you rub a leaf that containing essential oils the fragrance will raise in the air and evaporate after a short while.The essential oil in a plant gives it a particular fragrance and coupled with its colour and shape also a particular action on our bodies, emotions and minds. Essential oils can be used as part of a massage, as a perfume and also to prevent and help some forms of bacterial infections. In massage essential oils need to be diluted with a base oil as they can be too concentrated and irritating to be applied undiluted unto the skin. Some of the best base oils, also known as 'carrier oil, are sunflower seed oil, almond and grapeseed. I would recommend that you purchase these oils from a health food shop which can supply you with organic oils. For a full body massage or even to apply the essential oil in a particular area you can pour enough base oil to fill a tea saucer which normally can contain up to 40-50 ml of oil. In the base oil add 4 to 5 drops of your favourite essential oil. If you are mixing 2 oils than add 2 drops of each.

As a few individuals could be allergic to some of the essential oils first apply a small quantity of the massage combination in a small area of the skin and see whether it provokes an allergic reaction such as redness, itching and swelling.

If you have prepared a full saucer of the massage combination and you have only used a smaller quantity preserve for a couple of days the oil in the fridge or pour it in a dark glass bottle and keep it in a cool place away from sunlight.In the same way you can prepare larger amounts by filling a 100 ml bottle with the carrier oil and than adding 10 drops of your favourite essential oil or oils. You could even use these combinations as a present for friends.

Points to Remember

Some people are allergic to essential oils, so always apply a tiny amount to the skin before attempting a massage.

Do not use essential oils during pregnancy unless under highly competent medical supervision.

Essential oils should never be taken internally unless under highly competent medical supervision.

Massage over the abdomen very lightly and gently as it is a very sensitive area and stop at the slightest signs of discomfort

Essential oils evaporate quickly under sunlight, heat and dampness. Always store them in dark bottles away from hear, sunlight and dampness.

Once diluted the oil combination can last up to 3 months if properly stored and even better if kept in the fridge.

When beginning a massage, pour the diluted oil into the palm of your hand, rub your hands together gently till warm and than begin your massage. At first keep on adding oil to the body till your hands can glide comfortably. <

We will next look into the properties of some of the main essential oils which can be used to enhance massage and sensuality.

Properties of the Main Essential Oils

(this section explains general properties of the essential oils
but also mentions how lovers using massage to enhance
their sensuality can use essential oils for this purpose)

I shall now describe to you the properties of the some of the main essential oils that can be used for enhancing a massage session massage. In this chapter you can deepen this knowledge by understanding how to choose the oils that are best suited to you and your recipient. However at the end of the day the best method of choice is by trying various oils and experimenting with them. If you go to a health food shop that sells Aromatherapy products you can smell a few of them and choose them according to their fragrance.The pleasant fragrance of essential oils and their stimulating and sensual properties can greatly enhance your massage session relaxing or stimulating the receiver according to their needs. If you are massaging your partner essential oils and massage can enhance your lovemaking by relaxing your lover and make them more receptive to surrendering to the joys of sensuality.

Some oils are best suited for their relaxing and calming properties if you or your receiver tends to be tensed and apprehensive or for their stimulating properties to increase warmth and circulation in people that are cold and blocked. You can also mix a more relaxing oil with a stimulating one; it is up to you to experiment till you find those oils and combinations that are best suited to your and your lover's nature.

Are essential oils very expensive?

Some of the most sensual oils such as Rose and Jasmine can seem very expensive. That is due to the fact that those flowers are expensive to buy and only contain a small amount on the volatile oil thus needing a large quantity of the plant to produce even a small amount of essential oil. However don’t let this fact put you off from choosing your favourite oil. Remember that you only need to add a few drops to a combination for administering an effective and pleasant massage therefore a very small amount of an essential oil can go a long way. The Aromatherapy combination for the purpose to enhance sensuality can just be applied to small areas such as the lower back or the lower abdomen again greatly reducing the amount needed for a sensual massage.

The Emotional and Physical Aspects of Essential Oils

The information given in this regard is derived from various sources based on many centuries of practical knowledge and experimentation.

Aniseed ( Pimpinella anisum )

This oils acts as a sedative for the nervous sytem and it is also very good for digestion thus it is very good for digestive problems cause by stress and tension. For this purpose it is often massaged over the abdomen with another oil such as Chamomile or Orange Peel to soothe nervous indigestion. It has also a mild expectorant action and its calming properties are indicated for the spasms of a cough.

To alleviate colic, rub on the stomach of a small child, but do not use more than one drop to 50 ml (2 tablespoons) of base oil; adults double this amount, but do not repeat it more than twice a week in either case because of its sedative properties.

 

Bergamot

(Citrus Bergamia) If you smell the captivating aroma od the fruit still on its tree you can immediatly guess some of its qualities. Bergamot has an affinity for the nervous system and particularly for those who are debilitated, stressed and depressed. It lifts the spirits and restores a good mood. Few people can be allergic to this oils so remember as with all the oils to apply a small ammount to the skin first.
Medical research shows that past use, diluted as a douche to treat urinary and vaginal infections, may have led to problems of the female reproductive system so be very careful if you want to use for this purpose

Benzoin (Stirax benzoin)

This oil has a dark, thick and viscous consistency with a strong sweetish aroma. It is also a good general tonic with the added value that it does not over excite the system. Its main area of action is the respiratory system for weak and debiliated persons who run out of breath easily. It is also good to strengthen the nervous system thus useful for people under stress who also feel weak and lethargic.
This oil also improves the respiratory system by mildly aiding expectoration, while calming coughing spasms. With both an expectorant and soothing action, it is useful for colds, flu and sore throats.

Chamomile (Anthemis nobilis)

These small and pretty yellow flowers have been used for thousands of years for their relaxing and digestive properties. They are used to favour digestion when upset by tension and apprehension. They also help to soothe inflammation and pain anywhere in the body.

Chamomile can be used when the person is tensed and suffers with a taut and blocked abdomen, the classical 'butterflies' syndrome. It is also reputed to dissipate irritation and resentment that can hinder relationships. Indicated for irritated and listless children ( and adults too!)

Can also be used for stress, nervous tension, stress headaches and insomnia

Excessive use of Chamomile could create a sense of debility that will promptly disappear once the use of this oil is interrupted.

Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea)

This oil is much lighter than comon Sage and therefore it is better tolerated by the body. It is an excellent all round tonic particularly useful for the lungs and for those people who suffer with weaknesses of the respiratory system. It also tends to strengthen general vitality and lift depression.

It is reputed to promote the production of the oestrogenic hormones and is indicated during the menopause however it can slightly increase the menstrual flow so women should bear this in mind

Cypress ( Cupressus sempervirens )

This oil is mainly used to improve the circulatory system. It exerts an astringent and stimulating action. It strengthens the valves of the veins and tones their tissues helping conditions such a tendency to varicose veins, cold extremities and poor circulation of blood. Do not massage over varicose veins instead apply the oil to the feet.

Due to its astringent qualities if massaged over the abdomen can soothe diarrhoea

Frankincense (Boswellia thurifera)

Reputed to lift the spirits, calm the mind and dispel depression. It also mildly acts on the respiratory system by calming a cough and expelling mucus. It improves circulation; and tones up the skin. It has a slightly astringent action thus indicated for weak muscle tone, diarrhoea and genital discharges

When massaged with lavender on an injured area it can hasten recovery and soothe the pain as it help blood flow in the area and promotes healing.

It has been reputed over the ages to dispel negative emotions, dark thoughts and lift depression promoting a more relaxed, positive and spiritual attitude to life.

Geranium (Pelargonium odorantissimum)

This oil is renown for its sweet and heady fragrance and the flowers from which it is derived for its vibrant colours. Geranium like Chamomile is also slightly calming but whilst Chamomile can create a sense of tiredness if used over a longer time Geranium relaxes but does not debilitate. It is often used for dry skin as it promotes the promotion of moisture thus in Chinese terminology we can say that it increases the 'Yin' energy of the body thus promoting moisture, coolness and a sense of energy which does not overheat the body

Geranium will relax people whilst at the same time enhancing their romanticism and the capacity to transport themselves into a world of romanticism, fantasy and relaxation. It can trigger feelings of 'sweetness' and caring encouraging overs to touch each other with care and warmth.

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Ginger (Zingiber officinale)

Warming for body and mind, this is recommended for people who suffer from cold symptoms. It can be in the respiratory area where it helps to soothe colds and acts as an expectorant. In the digestive area it speeds up digestion particularly in cold and lethargic individuals and is effective to relief nausea. It also promotes circulation warming cold extremities. It also gives warmth to the whole body and stimulates vitality.

Like all hot herbs it should not be taken for too long a period by people who tend to have body heat symptoms like a red face, dry skin and areas of inflammation either on the skin or inside the body

Jasmine (Jasminum officinale)

If you have smelled the scent from the flowers in a warm summer night you will easily understand its actions. Jasmine has one of the most livening and inebriating aromas that can fill the night with passion and joy. In my experience the essential oil of Jasmine is the most potent aphrodisiac that can be applied over the body. Mixed with a carrier oil it is best massaged over the lower back and lightly over the abdomen.

It is reputed to lift the sense of guilt and self-loathing that so much can spoil our sensuality and sexuality. It also helps in cases of depression and low vitality. If you are not using it for sensual purposes you can apply it to lift depression, debility, low spirits and apathy

Juniper (Juniperus communis)

This is a warm plant with stimulant and diuretic properties, it is contra-indicated in the case of inflammation in the kidneys. Otherwise it is recommended to promote diuresis, it also helps to alleviate rehumatic pains particularly if they are worse in cold and damp wheather. It has also a slight tonic action and can give a little extra energy

Lavender ( Lavandula officinalis)

Lavender is probably the most popular essential oil and has many qualities and applications. Its most marked action is on the nervous system where it acts as a sedative useful for insomnia, stress and any neurological pain such as trigeminal neuralgia. Applied mixed to carrier oil to the temples and neck it can often soothe stress headaches. Applied to the hands and feet it can also promote circulation and soothe inflamed veins. Prolonged use as with most sedatives can cause a sense of lethargy and fatigue that promptly disappears once its use is discontinued.

Lavender has in my experience an almost miraculous action to soothe infections and inflammation. It can be applied pure over burns, insect bites, contusions, cuts and its healing effect is almost immediate.

Lavender has also a strong anti-bacterial and anti-spasmodica action helping conditions like coughs and bronchitis.

Lavender can help people who are shy and tense and who accumulate tension and are anxious and taut during love making. In these cases it is best massaged over the shoulders, temples, hands and feet.

Mandarin peel (Citrus nobilis)

This oil decongests the liver, and is useful for pain and discomfort in the right flank accompanied by a bitter taste in the mouth. It helps digestion, alleviating flatulence and belching, and has a mild astringent quality helpful in diarrhoea. It is also used as a mild expectorant expectorant. It also a mild anti-depressant action and helps to lift the spirits.

It has a similar action to orange peel but it is more astringent, so whilst mandarin peel would be indicated in cases of diarrhoea, orange peel is more indicated for constipation.

Marjoram (Origanum majorana)

Marjoram is highly regarded for its action on the respiratory system and on the nervous system. Very few plants have such a complementary action as marjoram when there is the need to combine tonic and calming actions. For example, there are individuals who are highly stressed and tense yet at the same time feel tired and fatigued. Marjoram can solve this problem by increasing stamina while ca1ming tension. It also soothes coughing spasms, strengthens the lungs and promotes expectoration; and is used for treating muscular aches and pains and arthritis.

Neroli (Citrus vulgaris)

This essential oil has a wonderful and captivating fragrance and is extracted from the orange flowers mainly from Seville, Spain. It is one of the best calming oils without excessive sedating effects. It promotes calmness, relaxation and good sleep whilst at the same time it revitalises and soothes the nervous system.

In lovemaking Neroli calms and soothes tension and anxiety whilst at the same time creating a sense of liveliness and happiness a great combination of qualities. If you think that making love under an orange grove bathed by the warm and glowing sun of Seville is great than Neroli is for you!

Orange Peel (Citrus aurantium)

This is a popular medicament used extensively throughout the ages in most cultures and traditional schools of medicine. It promotes good digestion, alleviates constipation and soothes the nervous system helping both too soothe and stimulate. It is, though, less calming than Neroli. It is also reputed to help the liver alleviating discomfort in the right flank with bitter taste in the mouth

It is used to relax people and give them a sense of fragrant well being, it's also particularly recommended when there is a tensed and taut abdomen

Peppermint (Mentha piperita)

Acts primarily on the digestive system, stimulating the digestive processes. Alleviates flatulence, belching and abdominal swelling; has a stimulating, refreshing effect on the whole body. It is also used for colds and flu and assists expectoration. It can be used for headaches which have a digestive cause. It also imparts a livening and refreshing effect useful for pick-me-up effect

Rose (Rosa damascus, gallica)

It is rare to find someone who is not captivated by the fragrance of Roses and the essential oil encapsulates all the power and magic of this beautiful flower. Rose in anti-inflammatory, slightly astringent and tonic making it and excellent remedy for the skin used in blemishes, red spots, wrinkled and saggy skin. Rose can lift depression, promote a joyful and loving state of mind, it tonifies without tensing and it relaxes without sedating.

Rose helps to cool the body and moisten dryness and is indicated for inflammation anywhere in the system. It has a mild relaxing and anti-inflammatory action on the liver and digestive organs

Rose is reputed to help individuals who have been hurt in their love life and feel depressed, resentful and unable to trust and open their heart to love and sensuality. Rose creates trust, and opens the heart to the beauty of love and sexuality. It promotes romanticism with a sense of trust and joy of life. The Rose is all its beauty contains thorns a reminder that it is part of life and of our inner growth that we have to know both pain and happiness and that should not stop us from living life to the full.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)

The essential oil of Rosemary is warm, stimulant, it improves circulation and vitality and it should not be over-used by people who have difficulty in sleeping or have high blood pressure. Massaged over the feet and legs it improves circulation and body warmth. It has been used through the ages also to improve memory probably because it improves circulation to the head.

Rosemary is advised to those people who tend to be cold and lethargic with cold extremities and a cold abdomen that tends not to feel the warmth sensations of lovemaking. It is reputed to restore a healthy flow of blood to the abdomen and genital area.

Sandalwood (Santalum album)

The oil of this tree is widely used in the East, particularly in India, where it a paste made from the wood and applied to the forehead to promote peace of mind and meditation. It encourages clear and cool thinking and dissipates negative thoughts and bad moods. Sandalwood is also used for the relief of urinary infections and for this purpose the oil can be massaged with carrier oil over the lower abdomen. I like to add that also Lavender is very useful for this purpose.

Sandalwood brings a very important element between the lovers which is a soul or spiritual understanding, it helps them to feel closer to one another and sort differences and misunderstandings with a calm mind. Remember that it is rather difficult for a couple to have a happy sexual life when there is conflict and mental tension between them.

Tea-tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)

This is renowned for its effective action against bacteria, fungi and viruses particularly against fungi and compliments lavender very well in its anti-bacterila action. Tea-tree is the favourite essential oil for any problems arising from a candida infection.Massage over the bladder area for thrush infections or cystitis. Use in the bath to help various skin problems, particularly if fungal. A drop added to water as a face wash can improve acne.

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris)

Thyme yields a very strong, hot and pungent essential oil which should be used only in very small amounts. One drop added to a bath or to 50 ml (2 tablespoons) of massage oil is more than enough. Thyme has a very powerful action on the respiratory system; eliminates harmful germs as it is strongly anti-bacterial; is a very effective expectorant; and is good for bronchitis. It has a toning, heat producing and stimulating action; avoid in cases of high blood pressure and signs of excessive heat in the body like a red face, inflammed and dry skin.

Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanoides)

Produces a pleasant sense of languor and relaxation, while refreshing the mind. Very good for the circulation; for treating hot inflamed extremities, and inflamed dry skin conditions. It also promotes relaxation without debilitating as a matter of fact it can give energy to people who are tired, listless and suffer with hot and dry symptoms

Ylang-Ylang (Cananga odorata)

The plant from which this essential oil is extracted is very popular in countries such as the Philippines, Indonesia and the Pacific islands where it is highly regarded as a slightly stimulant agent and a very good aphrodisiac.

Its sweet scent exhilarates the senses yet at the same time it is also mildly relaxing fulfilling the need for relaxation yet at the same time for excitation during lovemaking.

It can impart more energy without creating restlesness and over-heating the system.