As a business owner in the home fragrance industry, I get a lot of questions about how safe oil warmers are and how to choose the best oils.
I will concentrate on scented oils first (not essential oils, that’s a whole different ballgame).
Oils that are NOT essential are manufactured using a combination of natural & synthetic ingredients. They are carefully processed so they are suitable & safe for home or bath & body use.
So what makes one companies oils better (stronger, longer lasting) than another?
This largely depends on the manufacturer. If a distributor isn’t buying a good quality oil, it doesn’t take long to find out that it’s cheap. The oils may lose the fragrance after a short time, or have no fragrance at all when heat is applied!
Depending on what type of fragrance you get, the oils can react differently when used in a particular application.
This is why I have always stressed to people who want to start a home fragrance business to always test oils before buying a large quantity. You will know right away if it is a quality product & OK to use in your application. This will save you a lot of money & keep your customers in the long run.
I have tested many many oils from several different manufacturers & only sell the highest quality to my customers (best pricing too). Like Essential oils, fragrance oils can also have “calming” or other soothing effects on your body. I have one customer that frequently orders my fragrance “Boysenberry” because she says it relaxes her.
Another tip to buying oils, I suggest buying your base oils, custom blend yourself and test, test, test. It takes a little more time & effort, but if you buy oils in “ready to sell” bottles (which also has their label on it), you have no idea if the quality is the same bottle for bottle.
Now for the warmers. Two popular forms of oil warmers are tealight & electric. I will explain why electric warmers are your safest bet.
First, tealight warmers use a small candle with a flame to heat up the oil. All oils have a flash point, meaning if they exceed a certain degree the oil will likely catch on fire. Think of this in terms of vegetable oil in a pan on a hot stove. If you leave the stove on high, the oil will surely catch on fire at some point!
Tealight warmers can be dangerous because you have no control over how hot the flame gets, thus creating a fire hazard.
You are also wasting your oils!
I have tested my oils in tealight warmers and the oil eventually boiled, sputtered & burned in a very short amount of time. There was a nice scent at first, but it didn’t last long!
When I poured the oil out, it was a dark brownish/black color (I used French Vanilla which was clear when I started). The oil was ruined, not to mention ready to flame up!
If you prefer to use (or sell) tealight warmers, I suggest that you stay close by while burning in case you need to intercept. It is recommended that you also share this with your customers.
Most electric warmers use a 35watt light-bulb & are equipped with a dimmer switch. This invention is not only ingenious, but so much safer to use!
I usually turn my warmer on high for about 15 minutes, then turn it down halfway. The oil rarely burns (the bulb doesn’t get hot enough), and the scent is constant and fantastic!
You will see “white smoke” rising from the oil, but this is not smoke, it is vapor from the oil which is completely normal. The vapor is the oil evaporating into the air which in turn fragrances your entire home.
Also very nice (unlike candles) there is no black soot associated with burning oils.
Another tip for warming oils, if you get a fragrance that is particularly strong, you can always add water to your warmer and add a few drops of oil until you get to a comfortable level.