The term oil in 'essential oils' is not truly accurate, but it is a traditional term.
Essential oils are very volatile fragrances that easily evaporate and greatly differ in character from oils such as olive or safflower oil. Essential oils, derived from plant extracts, are complex mixtures of plant-produced chemicals. Essential lavender oil contains more than fifty plant-produced chemicals.
Pure essential oils are expensive and must be obtained from reputable sources. Adulteration of essential oils is very common since a product like rose oil yields just 0.2% essential oil.
While the finest natural French lavender oils harvested in the Haute Provence are up to 70% linalyl acetate, many lavender oils from France have higher levels of linalyl acetate. However, such oil is fortified with synthetic products and may have no traces of natural lavender. Sandalwood oil can be adulterated with diverse oils such as castor, palm and linseed.
Essential oils are remarkably free of side effects - which is reflected by their long use by humans. Some people may have allergies to oils such as cinnamon oil and juniper berry oil..
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