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Essential Oils Vs. Fragrance Oils- Whats the difference?

Updated on December 29, 2015

One Is Therapeutic and The Other Is Not.

One major difference between essential and fragrance oils is that there are no therapeutic plant benefits in fragrance oils.  Fragrance oils are synthetically produced by chemist to create scents, and offer no therapy to the skin through absorption or therapy through inhalation as well.   In fact you may never know what exactly you are breathing in or applying to your skin, because the  manufacturers of fragrance oils are not required to disclose the ingredients used in making these oils under the “trade secrete law”; so you never actually know what is in these oils.  This is why those who are chemically sensitive and are looking for therapeutic soaps will tend to choose handmade soaps that are made with pure essential oils.

Straight Form The Plant

Essential oils are therapeutic and are highly concentrated extracts from plants, roots, buds, leaves, twigs, bark, rhizomes, heartwood, resin, seed and fruits using distillation or expression. These oils are more expensive and are limited to selection of scents. This is a major reason why large companies will often use fragrance oils, because of cheaper cost and more scents that are widely available.

If you are shopping for just the enjoyment of your favorite scent, than fragrances oil would probably be a wise choice, however if shopping for natural skin care products or scents for aromatherapy, essential oils would be the better pick.


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    • katiem2 profile image


      7 years ago from I'm outta here

      Thanks for keeping us clear on the facts regarding healthy oils and the differences between essentials and fragrance oils. Good to know! Very good indeed, no getting the two confused for me now! :) Katie

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from NY

      We do learn a lot from each other hear on the hub, thanks MartieCoetser!

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 

      7 years ago from South Africa

      I did not know this! I thought it was merely a way of marketing those oils. Thanks a lot for this information. One of these days I'm going to be the cleverest girl in town! Thanks to HubPages and brilliant hubbers like you :)))

    • devsir profile image


      7 years ago from Earth

      Nice Post

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from NY

      You know it was only until I started making skin care products that I realized this as well. Thanks Darlene and Happy New Year!

    • Darlene Sabella profile image

      Darlene Sabella 

      7 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

      Thank you so much for clearing that up, I had no idea that there was a difference. This is a brillent hub, and very well informed. I am so happy to have learned this, thank you my friend. rate up, peace & love darski


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