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How Essential Oil Diffusers Work

Sometimes we just need time to pause and relax so that we can re-evaluate our direction in life. There are many ways to make this endeavor a memorable and effective one, but the best way is arguably through meditation. Of course, adding essential oils to the equation will enhance the experience immensely due to their calming properties. Then again, they aren’t quite effective without a diffuser. In this article, we’ll find out how essential oil diffusers work and what diffusers are available today.

Essential oils have been around for centuries. They are an important part of aromatherapy, an ancient practice to boost a person’s physical and mental well-being. They can either be inhaled or used as massage oil.

Many well-known essential oils are made from the essence of plants that have gone through the process of distillation. A modest amount of extracted oil comes out after going through the procedure. The concentration also contains the fragrance and properties of the extracted plant. Watch the 13-minute video below to learn how essential oils are made:

Essential Oil Uses and Benefits

Inhalation is one of the most common and effective ways to consume essential oils, but they can be used in other ways as well. Some people use them as a massage oil, hand sanitizer, shoe deodorant, mosquito repellent, kitchen cleaner, toilet cleaner, fabric softener, or closet freshener.

Aside from the various uses of essential oils, they also have many benefits as listed below:

Pouring an Essential Oil

  • Cleanses and purifies the air around you – Some essential oils are very effective at eliminating bacteria, resulting in a healthy environment for everyone in the room.
  • Natural scent – Releasing mists of natural oil into the air is the crux of how essential oil diffusers work. The result is fragrance that leads to improvements in mood or behavior.
  • Focus and relaxation – The fragrance of essential oils can also reduce stress, thereby making concentration and relaxation easier to achieve.
  • Repels unwanted bugs – Essential oils that are well suited as insect repellenet include citronella, lemon, and peppermint. Mosquitoes are known to stay away from citronella. Likewise, spiders avoid peppermint like the plague.
  • Improve’s sleep – Those with PTSD experience sleep disruption frequently. A blend of essential oils, such as lavender and jasmine can sedate the mind, thus improving quality of sleep.

How to Diffuse Essential Oils

Diffusers are devices that disperse and infuse the aroma of essential oils into the air, resulting in an enriched and tranquil environment. Watch the video below to learn how essential oil diffusers work (an ultrasonic diffuser was used in the video):

How essential oil diffusers work is quite mind boggling. There are actually many types of them, and each one distributes essential oils differently.

Ultrasonic Diffuser

An ultrasonic diffuser is the most widely used essential oil diffuser today. It does not produce heat, does not drastically affect the ambient temperature of a room, and does not change the oil’s chemical composition. The noise it makes is also manageable. It works by releasing ions into the air. These ions are as fresh as the ones found in forests, mountains, and beaches.


The lower section of an ultrasonic diffuser comes with a fan that pushes air from the outside and upwards into the upper reservoir. This section also contains electronics and other extra features, such as a bluetooth speaker. The reservoir is where the water and oil are held. Right under the reservoir’s center is a small disk that vibrates more than a thousand times per second in order to produce ultrasonic waves. These waves, along with the air from the bottom section, create mists that eventually go out through the spout.

Many ultrasonic diffusers are priced competitively, but they also cease working pretty quickly. They are a bit difficult to maintain as well. Molds can grow in the reservoir if left unattended for a few days. Once that happens, it may be best to dispose of the unit and buy another one.

Nebulizing Diffuser

A nebulizing diffuser works by vaporizing essential oils and turning them into gas that can be easily inhaled. It’s the same mechanism used in nebulizers for asthma patients. A pump is used to produce pressurized air. The air then passes through a tube, atomizing the oil in the process, and finally forming into mists that blend with the air.


Nebulizing diffusers do not need water, that’s why they’re the best example of how essential oil diffusers work. They diffuse essential oils in their purest form. Due to that, they can also use them up very quickly.

Heat Diffuser

A heat diffuser uses heat to distribute essential oils into the air. The oil sits on top of a tray, which is close to a heat source. Any heat source can be used for this, such as electricity, candles, or gas lamps. Like cooking oil in a pan, it breaks up and begins to smoke when it reaches a certain temperature.


 

Heat diffusers are really good at spreading the aroma of essential oils quickly and silently. However, they are not as effective as the two diffusers mentioned above because heat can destroy or change the composition of oil.

Evaporative Diffuser

An evaporative diffuser uses wind to spread essential oils into the air. The concept is similar to an evaporative air cooler. There’s a reservoir at the bottom. Then, the water is pumped through a tube and rises to the filter. Finally, the water drips down through the filter, like a pachinko ball. It does this continuously while the fan is blowing through the filter.


Evaporative diffusers are also excellent at rapidly distributing the fragrance of essential oils. Even so, the oils aren’t dispersed efficiently. The lighter molecules get blown off first, then the heavier ones later.

It is rather clear at this point why an ultrasonic diffuser and a nebulizing diffuser are the two most popular choices. Their strengths far outweigh their weaknesses.

Are you looking for one? The table below lists the popular options that are available today:

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