So there are a lot of people these days interested and/or already using essential oils. However, there is a lot of information out there that is both safe and very, very unsafe. My personal opinion of essential oils, especially around kids, is that we treat them with the same respect that we treat medications and household cleaners. They are powerful and they deserve that respect. Therefore, I am a firm advocate and believer in safe dilutions rates for essential oils.
Whether you are planning on cleaning your house around the kids, or found an awesome DIY recipe somewhere on the web, it’s important to make sure we keep our kids safe as we use essential oils. It’s also important to keep yourself safe! Oils are used for aromatherapy and can alter your health and your mood… both in positive and negative ways. That’s why using oils safely is so vital and important.
ssps for diluting essential oils for safe use
- Make sure everyone in your home is wearing socks when you clean. Many time dilution rates are going to be different for dermal use vs. household cleaning. As our feet can absorbs oils, we want to make sure that bare feet do not run across freshly mopped floors.
- Stick to one oil or one blend at a time. Just like we can be allergic to plants, we can be allergic to oils. You don’t want to use too many at once just in case someone in your family gets itchy eyes or something, you want to be able to nail down the culprit.
- Diluting oil not only is safer, but it is less wasteful. For instance, a 15mL bottle of Lemon Essential Oil is 75 lemons. That means you use up an entire lemon in just four drops of oil!
- Use your best judgment. If it doesn’t seem right, don’t do it. If you’re concerned, don’t do it. If it feels safer for your family to wear gloves, do it. If you wear gloves with commercial cleaners, then wear gloves with homemade too. It’s still a powerful cleaner!
- Know about using citrus oils. Citrus can cause skin irritation if you go out into the sun. Again, oils are just like medications and chemicals. You need to be careful. So if you or your child is handling lemon, orange, or other citrus oils while cleaning, you might want to wear gloves or just ensure you won’t be in direct sunlight for a day.
- Dilution rates for essentials oils differ…Some oils require lower ratios. Oils like lemongrass need to be diluted to 0.7% or less and shouldn’t be used around kids under 2 if is going to be used on the skin. This means you need to take special precautions when making things like bugsprays.
How to dilute oils to be kid safe
The leading expert in the essential oils field is Robert Tisserand. And while many people are going to say to NOT use eucalyptus, thieves, peppermint, wintergreen, rosemary, and other stronger or hot oils around children 6 and under or 10 and under, even Tisserand mentions that it is possible to have very safe usage for some of them like eucalyptus at just 0.25% and 0.5% dilution.
No oils should ever be used on less than three months old no matter how diluted and should be used with caution and high dilution rates when cleaning or diffusing.
Quick Reference Essential Oils Dilution Chart
This is a pinnable image for you to use. Click the image to pin and save! (The arrows at the bottom are in reference to this post since the image was made for Pinterest). If you are wanting to use 0.5% dilution, just divide the second column by 2.
Kara is an author, wife, and mother of 3 children living in Boston, MA. She has her degree in Secondary Education & Adolescent Childhood Development and is passionate about connecting with and even helping other parents on their journey to raise awesome kids!