Monday, 11 August 2008

Using an Oil Burner

Using Essential Oils in an Oil Burner
Oil burners are a great way to benefit from the healing properties of essential oils and fill your house with pleasing aromas. It has many uses – for healing, as an alternative to chemical-laden shop-bought air fresheners, as a room disinfectant in the case of colds and flu, as a room freshener, and to eliminate unpleasant odours.

With an increase in the use of aromatherapy and essential oils, oil burners have become very popular. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes, colours, and materials, and can be purchased from health food stores, chemists, department stores, new age stores, and on the internet. The type of burner you choose comes down to personal preference.

You can get metal and ceramic oil burners. I have both at home but mainly use the metal one. They both have their advantages and disadvantages. I think as long as the bowl on top is quite large and is far enough away from the candle it doesn’t matter too much what the burner is made from.

Some oil burners have a removable bowl and others are all in one. I personally prefer the ones with a removable bowl so that you only have to take that part to the tap to fill with water rather than the whole burner plus it makes it easier to clean in between use.

If you don’t feel comfortable using candles especially if you have children or pets around, you can purchase an electric “burner” known as an Aroma-Stream, which works by blowing air through a pad which holds the essential oils. It also means that you can use it at night to help you get to sleep or if you are suffering from a blocked nose or cold. The downside to the electric “burners” is they are quite expensive to buy, uses electricity, and you have to buy replacement pads.

Once you have purchased your oil burner, you will also need some small tea-light candles. Make sure that these are unscented otherwise they may mask the smell of the essential oils when they are lit. You will also need some pure essential oils of your choice and a lighter or matches.

Fill the top bowl of the oil burner with water. Add 6 - 8 drops of essential oil to the water. If you have a small room use less drops than if you have a large room. Stand the wick up on the tea-light candle, light it, and place in the base of the oil burner. As soon as the candle starts to heat up the water above it, the essential oils in the water will start to evaporate and the aroma is diffused along with the water vapour into the room.

Don’t let the oil burner burn dry as this can cause ceramic and glass burners to crack. When the water and essential oils have evaporated, either put the candle out or refill with more water and add a few more drops of essential oils.

Lighter oils (top and middle notes), such as lemon and lavender diffuse quicker than thicker oils (base notes), such as sandalwood and rose. You may want to top up the oil after a little while to maintain the aroma.

Some safety precautions. Never leave a lit candle unattended. Ensure the oil burner is secure on a flat surface and out of the reach of children and pets when in use.

The essential oils that I purchased along with my very first oil burner (way before I trained as an aromatherapist) were Lavender, Ylang ylang, and Eucalyptus. I have listed below some example blends for you to use in your oil burner.

As an insect repellent, add 2 drops each of Lemongrass, Lavender, and Tea Tree essential oils to a little water in the top of your oil burner.

To mask the smell of cigarette smoke, use 4 drops of Peppermint essential oil.

To wake you up in the morning, add 3 drops Grapefruit, 2 drops Rosemary, and 1 drop Peppermint essential oils.

To relax after a hard day at work, use 2 drops each of Lavender, Chamomile (I prefer Roman Chamomile to German and Maroc but it depends on what you are using it for as they have slightly different properties), and Sandalwood essential oils.

To help you study and improve concentration, use 3 drops Rosemary, 2 drops Eucalyptus, and 1 drop Peppermint to your oil burner.

I hope you get as much pleasure and healing from your essential oils and oil burner as I do from mine!

If you would like to purchase any of the essential oils mentioned in this post, please contact me for more details.


  1. i burnt my oil burner very badly. it is now caked with hard black burnt oil about 1/8" thick. how do i clean it?

  2. Hi, nice post. Well what can I say is that these is an interesting and very informative topic. Thanks for sharing your ideas, its not just entertaining but also gives your reader knowledge. Good blogs style too, Cheers!

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  3. Wow! it's really great post for getting deep information about oil burners. There are many ways of gettting benefits from the healing properties of essential oils and also fills your house with pleasing aromas.

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