Herbal Medicine
Herbal Medicine

How Essential Oils Enter the Body

How Essential Oils Enter the Body

Essential oil massage The ultimate way for your body to absorb therapeutic qualities of essential oils is actually through combination of dermal absorption and inhalation and these can be achieved through bathing and massage.

There are three known way that essential oils enter the body such as:

  • Absorption via skin’s surface
  • Inhalation through olfactory system
  • Taken internally (but not really recommended)


When essential oil is inhaled, molecules tend to rise on top of the nose and the meet the olfactory mucous membrane. This membrane got thousands of receptors which identify smells. Sensory stimulation is being sent through olfactory bulb acting as amplifier via olfactory nerve to the brain’s limbic system. It’s the oldest area of the human brain dealing with psychological and emotional responses. The whole process from initial oil inhalation up to gland secretion happens in just few seconds.

Dermal Absorption

Skin is known to be relatively permeable into fat soluble substances and impermeable to water-soluble substances. The essential oil molecules are very tiny so when applied into the skin, they are able to pass through the outermost layer of epidermis. Starting from here, oil molecules pass through the dermis, to the capillaries and straight to the bloodstream.

Absorption can also occur through sweat ducts and hair follicles. There are various factors affecting absorption of oil molecules. Both the warmth and circulation rate of the skin increases the blood flow into the surface. This therefore increases the ability of the skin to effectively absorb oil. Warmth and circulation can be enhanced and increased through massage. More benefits are available for you, just check out

There is no harm in taking essential oils and allowing these oils to be absorbed by the body however, it would still be best to consult a competent aroma therapist because this person is completely aware and knowledgeable on what best essential oil to be used.