Basics About Diffusing Essential Oils
Diffusing essential oils is known as aromatherapy. Using an essential oil diffuser allows you to reap the benefits of essential oils, plus it makes your space smell great!
To learn more about the benefits of essential oils, read my Essential Oils Beginner’s Guide.
I have an oil diffuser both on the nightstand in my bedroom and on my office desk at work.
- At home, I mostly diffuse oils to help me get a good night’s sleep.
- At work, my office mates and I diffuse essential oils that promote focus, reduce stress and anxiety, kill germs, help with headaches, and sometimes we just pick a blend based on scents that we like.
It’s also worth noting that along with being a healthier alternative to scented candles, diffusers also provide the benefit of being much more cost-effective. You can diffuse a wide variety of essential oils and they will provide benefits at a much lower cost.
(I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.)
Diffusing Essential Oils For Sleep & Relaxation
Diffusing essential oils that promote sleep and relaxation is my favorite reason for using a diffuser.
About 10 minutes before going to bed, I start the diffuser. Usually I use a blend of essential oils that promote good sleep plus has a nice aroma. By time I go to bed, the bedroom smells wonderful and I can start receiving maximum benefit from the oils.
My favorite essential oils for relaxation.
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RELATED POST: 21 Useful Essential Oil Blends for Relaxation
Most essential oil diffusers have an intermittent setting that is particularly helpful for night use. The intermittent feature automatically puts the diffuser on hold every 15 minutes or so, assuring the blend will last all night long. Sometimes I turn on the intermittent option, other times I just let it go constantly. My diffuser lasts at least 6 hours when running constantly, and that I feel like I reap sufficient benefits in that time.
The Inner Workings of a Diffuser
There are a wide variety of essential oil diffusers available on the market– the vast majority of these diffusers are ultrasonic, which means that they vaporize and distribute the oils via vibrations, without the need for using heat.
Using heat to diffuse essential oils can interfere with the integrity of the compound, therefore ultrasonic diffusers are a safe alternative.
How to Use an Essential Oil Diffuser
Diffusers are also quick and easy to use– simply add a bit of water to your diffuser, add the recommended amount of essential oil (usually around 5-6 drops) and you’re ready to go. It’s that easy! Be sure to read the instructions that come with the specific model you purchase.
Sourcing a Diffuser
So, with literally thousands of diffusers available on the market- what should you look for?
Quality: Essential oils can have a corroding effect when used on plastics, therefore a low-quality diffuser won’t last long. A high-quality product will use polypropylene or a similar strong material to ensure your diffuser will last.
Room Coverage: Be sure to keep in mind the area of the space you’d like to cover when sourcing your diffuser– if you’re looking to fill a yoga studio, your requirements will be very different from someone who is using their diffuser in a tiny room. Be sure to check the product for this information before purchasing to avoid disappointment!
You can also get diffusers with additional features such as lighting and a timer, which can be nice. In a child’s room, the light feature can also serve as a calming nightlight. Some diffuser models have a light feature that rotates between colors, or it can be stopped on one favorite color.
Diffusers range in price, but it is vital to find a diffuser with features that are right for you.
Amazon is a great source for both diffusers and essential oils. Check out this list of Amazon’s best selling oil diffusers. I always read the customer reviews to help me decide which diffuser will fit my specific needs. In my experience, Amazon has quality diffusers that are often on sale for incredible prices.
URPOWER Essential Oil Diffuser
Several months ago I purchased Amazon’s #1 seller, the URPOWER diffuser. It’s the perfect size for a bedroom or office. This particular diffuser model is too small for a living room as the scent (and health benefits) would get lost.
It is super easy to use. I used the measuring cup (that’s included) the first few times, but quickly became comfortable just eyeing it. There’s no guessing games – it’s very obvious where to pour the water, place the lid, and how to turn it on. The electrical cord is generous in length.
Four drops of any essential oil in 100 ml of water is plenty, although I tend to add a few extra drops. It has worked perfectly and I use it almost every night.
1. The auto turnoff feature is extremely important to me. Once the water/oil mixture is gone, the diffuser automatically turns off the mist. However, the light feature continues until it is turned off manually. That is perfect for when also used as a night light. Because it makes a great night light, this diffuser would also be perfect for a child’s room.
2. The colored lights are subtle, soothing and just gorgeous. I usually select the option to have the lights scroll through the various colors, and it seems to really help me relax. If you have one color that you particularly like, there’s the option of choosing a static color. I generally turn the light option off before going to sleep because I prefer a dark room, but the diffuser continues to run.
3. The URPOWER oil diffuser runs very quietly. I can barely even hear it.
I use this diffuser for aromatherapy and it works great for me. The diffuser holds 100 ml of water, which is a good size for a smaller room such as a bedroom. I mostly use it at night to get the benefits of aromatherapy while I sleep.
My daughter has the Avaspot diffuser which is a better choice for a larger room because it holds 250 ml of water. Using the intermittent mist setting, it can work for about 8-10 hours. If using the continuous mist setting, it will work for about 6- 8 hours. My daughter is happy with her purchase, and I just placed my order today to get one for our main living area! It’s really a great price, and I think it’ll look nice in our space.
The Avaspot diffuser also states that even “without oils, use the diffuser as a humidifier, suggesting it can add moisture to your room air which is good for eliminating dry skin, chapped lips and dry sinuses. I suggest you be mindful of the size of room because I can’t imagine it would be as effective as a regular humidifier in a large room.
<UPDATE:> In addition to ordering the Avaspot differ, I also ended up ordering this SoftDigits essential oil diffuser. It is almost identical to the Avaspot diffuser but was extremely low-priced! Turns out the Avaspot is now less expensive – so look at prices when you’re ready to purchase.
This nice-looking power-house diffuser has been running non-stop during the day for the last 4 days. It’s awesome! I have it sitting on my kitchen island (where I’ve been sitting with my laptop working) and it scents the whole kitchen area. If you’re thinking about a diffuser, I highly recommended this diffuser. Buy one and discover the benefits of using an essential oil diffuser.
To sum it up, I own and recommend all three of the following dissusers.
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How to Clean an Essential Oil Diffuser
It’s important to maintain your diffuser regularly to keep it from getting gunky and not working efficiently. Regular maintenance, which I try to do at least once per month, is easy and will help your diffuser last a long time.
5 Steps To Clean an Essential Oil Diffuser:
- Fill the water reservoir with about 1/4 cup of water.
- Add 1/2 teaspoon of white vinegar.
- Run the diffuser for 5-10 minutes.
- Unplug the diffuser and empty reservoir.
- Wipe clean with a soft cloth and gently use a cotton-tip near the sensor.
Essential Oil Diffuser Benefits are a Wonderful Thing
Finding a good diffuser is a big step toward getting greater benefits out of your essential oils- both in terms of health and overall enjoyment. I use a diffuser on a daily basis and admit I’m hooked! Learn more about essential oils by browsing my Pinterest board that is dedicated to essential oils.
Do you use a diffuser? Let me know in the comments what you think about diffusers and aromatherapy.