Drops of Gratitude was founded as an online aromatherapy jewelry shop on April 1st, 2014. Our lava bead infusible bracelet quickly became our flagship product…. It still is - and for good reason!
A lover and teacher of essential oils, Laura McKinnon (founder of DG) continues on her mission to educate people about the natural powers of essential oils. That’s why today – both online and in our gift shop in Southcenter Mall (Calgary) – aromatherapy is at the heart of our business.
Here are three of our favourite reasons we incorporate essential oils into our wellness products:
1) BLENDING PURE, THERAPEUTIC-GRADE ESSENTIAL OILS
When it comes to infusing your jewelry, the quality of your oil makes all the difference. That’s why we ensure all of our infusible products INCLUDE a dram of essential oil. We use only pure, therapeutic-grade oils that are sustainably sourced. Our team hand-blends a variety of oils into signature scents that support an array of emotions (or intentions).
When placing essential oils on or near your skin, you want to be confident that you’re NOT using ones made from fake fragrances containing toxins, harmful chemicals or synthetic materials.
How to tell if your essential oils are pure? Although it can be challenging to verify the purity of oils, some companies rigorously test the quality of their oils. Here are a few tips:
Look for the ingredients. It should only contain pure essential oils and/or carrier oils for safe and proper dilution (fractionated coconut oil, jojoba oil, or olive oil are good ones). Is ‘fragrance’ listed as an ingredient? Put it down - it’s likely not pure!
Google the company – learn about their reputation, their mission, where they harvest or procure their plants from, how long they’ve been in business, etc.
Can you easily find documentation on the company’s testing methods? Organoleptic, microbial, and gas chromatography are a few testing practices that you may learn about.
Laura has developed six signature essential oil blends: Calming, Energy, Focus, Gratitude, Grounding and Happiness. They’re all pure, therapeutic-grade with fractionated coconut oil as a carrier. Visit the links to see what oils are included in each blend!
(photo credit: https://doi.org/10.1002/ptr.6854)
2) HOW ESSENTIAL OILS AFFECT YOUR BRAIN
Essential oils have a natural ability to enhance our mood and well-being.
Many clinical experiments have been published on essential oils’ abilities to elevate the way we feel, and aid in the regulation of our emotions.
In a recent paper (published 2020) “Effects of essential oils on central nervous system: Focus on mental health” by Lorena R. Lizarraga‐Valderrama, “Preclinical and clinical studies have shown varying pharmacological responses in the nervous system leading to anxiolytic, antidepressant, sedative, and anticonvulsant effects.”
The study continues to highlight the influence of essential oils in physiological parameters such as blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, brain waves composition, and cortisol serum levels. How fascinating is that?!
Take a read! https://doi.org/10.1002/ptr.6854
We’ll break down just a few of the essential oils we use within our blends and how they are said to support wellness:
Lavender – promotes calming and relaxing feelings, reduces anxiety, used to help relieve headaches, relieves joint and muscle pain
Citrus – known for energizing properties, promotes uplifting feelings, boosts creativity
Mint – stimulating and said to bring energizing vibes, invigorating, helps to focus
Wood – used in grounding blends, brings feelings of peace, calm and tranquility
Therapeutic oils are commonly used by:
Diffusing in the air – usually with an essential oil diffuser or in a spritz bottle with distilled water
Placing directly on the skin (usually with a carrier oil to dilute to a safe concentration), or
Infusing them into porous surfaces like lava stone!
WAIT – HOW DO I INFUSE LAVA STONE? WHAT’S THE BENEFIT?
Drops of Gratitude infusible products include ethically-sourced lava rock for easy infusion. The lava beads we use are naturally porous. Just place a few drops and massage them into the stones using your fingers. The topical and olfactory benefits of the oil will last MUCH longer than if they were placed directly onto your skin or diffused in the air.
Why? Because the oils slowly release from the pores onto the skin and into the air (acting as a diffuser). The scent from the oils will typically last 1-2 days before having to reapply. When you apply oils directly to your skin, your body will soak that goodness right up which is great if you are using them to support healthy skin, cell rejuvenation, or body ailments; however, you won’t get to experience the emotional support that the oils provide as long. Having the oils on the lava stone will ensure you can smell them for longer periods of time.
3) FASCINATING SCIENCE OF AROMATHERAPY & OLFACTORY RESPONSE
Our sense of smell is more powerful than any other sense. Our recognition of smell is immediate and it’s the strongest link to our unconscious mind where memories are stored.
What comes to mind when you smell freshly baked cinnamon buns? How do you feel when you take a deep breath while hiking?
Make no mistake - most of your deepest memories are intact because of the smells you remember. Smelling essential oils can have a powerful influence over how you think, feel and behave.
HOW DOES AROMATHERAPY WORK?
When inhaled, essential oil molecules can have a profound effect on your:
Olfactory system - the part of your brain that’s connected to your nose (smell), and the
Limbic system - involved in your emotional response, motivation, ability to learn and the regulation of hormones
DID YOU KNOW? ESSENTIAL OILS CAN EVEN HELP TO BALANCE HORMONES!
Lavender actually helps you relax. Peppermint wakes you up. This has been proven by science! If you ever want to geek out on cool studies check out the effects of lavender oil inhalation on emotional states, autonomic nervous system, and brain electrical activity. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22612017/
**Karadag E, Samancioglu S, Ozden D, Bakir E. Effects of aromatherapy on sleep quality 2017 Mar;22(2):105-112. doi: 10.1111/nicc.12198. Epub 2015 Jul 27. PMID: 26211735.
So, to leave you with a few key takeaways:
1) If you’re using essential oils - ensure they’re pure 2) Do your homework. Know and trust the company you’re buying from. Understand their sustainability practices. Choose oils that are safe for you and the environment.
Do you know someone who sells therapeutic essential oils through a company like doTERRA or Young Living? Both are good, reputable companies (I used to rep one of them). Have questions? Talk to those you know, or drop us a line via email or through social media.
And of course, you can buy our signature blends by visiting our website.