New legislation concerning Allergens
In Essential oils and toiletry products
The Cosmetics Products (Safety) Regulations 2003 now
requires allergens of certain listed varieties to be included in the list
on toiletries in the following concentrations (as a %age of
the overall ingredients of the finished product)
Leave-on products (eg. skin creams)
Rinse-off products (eg. soaps, shampoos,
shower gels) 0.01%
list of allergens required to be included if present is as follows:-
AMYL CINNAMYL ALCOHOL
CINNAMAL (Cinnamic Aldehyde)
HYDROXYMETHYL PENTYL CYCLOHEXENE CARBOXALDEHYDE (Lyral)
ANISYL ALCOHOL (Anise alcohol)
2-(TERT-BUTYL PROPIONALDE) (Lilial)
HEXYL CINNAMIC ALDEHYDE (Hexyl Cinnamal)
METHYL HEPTINE CARBONATE
OAK MOSS EXTRACT (Evernia Prunastri)
TREE MOSS EXTRACT ( Evernia Furfuracea)
Click here for a List of Allergens in all essential oils
The case of Lavender
The pioneering figurehead, Pierre Franchomme, of the Institut des Sciences Phytomédicales in France, has done much research into the exact therapeutic analysis and chemical make-up of many essential oils. For example, he found that pure 'clinical' grade Lavender oil contains over two hundred individual natural chemical components and that each of these has a smaller or greater therapeutic effect. These create infinite healing possibilities.
It is in the enormous range of components (which are listed below in the GLC chart see figure 1) that lies the clue to the extraordinary variety of therapeutic effects the various types of lavender oil (and other essentials can have). These include helping many conditions from being anti pathogenic to helping insomnia. There are few if any reported side effects and few contra-indications. It is not surprising that Lavender oil is the most widely used essential oil in the world.
It is all the naturally contained components in essential oils that is so vital to ensuring a high grade ‘clinical oil’. If the natural balance of the oil is upset only slightly, through additives and adulterants, then not only will the oil's therapeutic properties be weakened, but the oil could be potentially harmful to the individual user.
Obviously it is far more expensive to produce pure organic 'clinical' grade oil, due to the expense of organic farming and a more thorough distillation process. For example during the distillation process of lavender oil, after twenty-five minutes, 75% of the essential oil is extracted; however, it is only after an hour and forty-five minutes that the remaining 25% of the oil is extracted. It is therefore very tempting for the less scrupulous distiller to reduce the time of distillation, saving time and money, but eventually producing an incomplete and low-grade oil.
TRACE ANALYSIS OF LAVANDULA ANGUSTIFOLA H.E.C.T. (True Lavender) Using Gas Liquid Chromatography (GLC)
The graph below illustrated the huge variety of natural chemical components found in lavender oil. There are a large number of trace components as well as the main proportional constituents of listed below. Each peak or ripple on the chart is an individual component; some are in large amounts such as Linalyl Acetate others in trace quantities, for instance, Beta Myrcine.
The numbers referred to on figure 1 correspond to the list of chemical components below.
1. Beta Myrcine
3. Trans-beta Ocimine
8. Linalyl Acetate
9. Lavandulyl Acetate
10. Beta Caryophyllene.
|TRACE ANALYSIS OF LAVANDULA ANGUSTIFOLA H.E.C.T. (True Lavender) Using Gas Liquid Chromatography (GLC)
Chemical Groups in Essential Oils
Eight predominant chemical groups are involved in the composition of essential oils and each group contributes a particular therapeutic quality. Chemical analysis using the method of Gas Liquid Chromatography (GLC) means the purity of the oil can be assessed, and the presence of any foreign ingredients can be spotted – for example, artificial fertilisers or pesticides – in oils claimed to have been organically grown.
To fully understand why it is so important to have as pure essential oils as possible, it is necessary to understand the chemical make-up of each essential oil, and the therapeutic effect of each chemical group.
The eight main chemical groups found in essential oils are Aldehydes, Esters, Ketones, Phenyl Methyl Ethers, Oxides, Phenols, Alcohols and Mono Terpenes.
||anti-infectious, analgesic, anti-inflammatory; they also help regulate the central nervous system
||geraniol, found in e.g. Rose Geranium (pelagoniun graveolens)|
||calming, sedative, and they help regulate the central nervous system they are also anti-spasmodic, and mucolytic (breaks down mucous)
||linalyl, found in e.g. Lavender (lavandula angustifolia), 40%|
||anti-infectious, skin healing, mucolytic, lipolytic (breaks down fats), aides respiratory tract infections
||verbenone, found in e.g. Rosemary (rosmarinus official)|
|Phenyl Methyl Ethers
||anti-infectious, anti-spasmodic, oestrogen-like and therefore can help regulate hormonal system as well as help regulate central nervous system
||chavicol, found in e.g. Basil (ocimum basilicum)|
||expectorant, some are anti-infectious
||cineole or eucalyptole, found in e.g. Eucalyptus (globulus) 70%. |
||linalol, found in e.g. Lavender (lavandula angustifolia).|
||strongly anti-pathogenic, stimulating. (NB, some are dermocaustic)
||thymol, found in e.g. Thymes CT thymol 30%|
||antiseptic, fortifying and strengthening anti-viral, cortisone-like
||limonene, found in e.g. lemon (citrus limone)70%|
This list of natural chemical ingredients and their therapeutic effects illustrates just how important all the natural ingredients are in essential oils. The loss of any of these ingredients, through lack of purity results in essential oils with little or no therapeutic effect, in other words as we said in the beginning, they simply do not work.