How Do Oil Diffusers Work?

How Do Oil Diffusers Work?

If you’ve ever been to a spa or a yoga class, you’ve probably walked in and immediately been enveloped in a sense of calm and healing. They just have a certain scent that instantly seems like it lowers your blood pressure and relaxes you—the kind of scent that you automatically associate with relaxing practices and places after you’ve smelled it once. Often, that feeling of relaxation and pleasant scent comes from an essential oil diffuser.

If you’re looking for ways to work essential oils into your daily routine, or if you’ve only ever used essential oils topically and are interested in branching out, learning about essential oil diffusers is a great next step. 

Essential oil diffusers can create an amazing ambiance, and because you can choose which essential oils you’d like to diffuse, it’s completely customizable. And not only do essential oils smell amazing when diffused, but as you may know, they come with all sorts of wellness benefits. So if you’re looking for something to help get you into the right mood or mindset, an essential oil diffuser is a must-have!

And while essential oil diffusers are increasingly common devices, you may be wondering—how do oil diffusers work? Lucky for you, essential oil diffusers are super simple to use, and come in a variety of sizes and looks, depending on the atmosphere they’re trying to create. But let’s break down how they work, so you fully understand what you’re dealing with!

What Are the Different Types of Oil Diffusers?

There are actually a few different setups that fall under the umbrella of oil diffusers, and some of them may actually be familiar to you already. One of the most common types of essential oil diffusers is evaporative essential oil diffusers. 

These are those beautiful little bottles filled with a delicious-smelling solution into which you put a series of reeds. The oil then diffuses into the reeds and allows the scent to pervade the room. You might already have one of these in your bathroom!

Another type that tends to already exist in everyone’s mother’s house is a heat-based essential oil diffuser. Usually, heat-based oil diffusers use a small candle to warm a heat-safe casing that melts some wax or other medium for mixing the essential oil, which releases the scent into the room.

The main type of essential oil diffuser we’ll be talking about is called an ultrasonic essential oil diffuser. Instead of using heat or absorbent material to help disperse the oil into your environment, ultrasonic diffusers disperse essential oils through vibrations. 

This stirs up the particles within the oil and helps them to take flight into the air. Ultrasonic diffusers typically have a water tank, into which you’d pour water and your preferred amounts of essential oils to help create the mood you’re after. You could say they are all about good vibrations.

Why Use an Essential Oil Diffuser?

Now that you know how a few different types of essential oil diffusers work, you may be wondering what benefits they have for you, and how they’ll fit into your life and lifestyle. If you already like to light some scented candles to help you wind down at the end of the day, or use any other implement to make sure that your home or office smell beautiful, you may be wondering why you want an essential oil diffuser as opposed to something else.

The first thing we’d say is that essential oil diffusers, especially ultrasonic diffusers, are incredibly affordable and require way less upkeep from your wallet to keep every part of your life smelling great and get you in the mood you want to be in. Whereas scented candles can be crazy expensive, especially if you use them daily, and the same can be said for heated oil diffusers or other similar products, once you purchase the essential oil diffuser, all you need is tap water and essential oils.

This also makes them much more versatile than other products that help you set the mood! While your favorite scented candle might be great, keeping several different scents to use depending on your mood, the season, or even the time of day can add up quickly and create a lot of clutter. 

With our Big White essential oil diffuser, for example, you can fill it up with 500ML of water, and add a few drops of literally any oil that strikes your fancy, and you’re ready to go. Maybe you use an essential oil mixture that will help you get the jump on a budding headache, and then later in the day, you need a little pick-me-up to help you get through the last stack of papers on your desk. All you have to do is change out the water and add a few drops of a mix like our Energizer pure essential oil, and you’re all set!

If you already enjoy using essential oils in other ways, like applying topically to your skin to help improve skin conditions, or even in your bath as part of a luxurious bath bomb, you know that aromatherapy can have tangible, positive effects on your mood. There are even some essential oils that have been shown to have a positive impact on depression and related symptoms. If you can get all of the delightful benefits of a scented candle with the mood-boosting effects of essentials, all while spending less than you probably have on comparable products in the past, the real question is—why haven’t you started already?

What Are Some Benefits of Using Essential Oil Diffusers?

The benefits you get from your essential oil diffuser really depend on the blend of essential oils that you use. While we’re all for experimenting and finding out which oils and scents you prefer, and making your own personalized mixes, here are some suggestions for how to get the most out of your essential oil diffuser.

If You Want To Start the Day Off Right

Try a blend of citrus to get yourself moving as soon as you wake up! A couple of drops of orange, a few drops of grapefruit, a couple of drops of lemon, and a pinch of bergamot to finish it off will definitely have you jumping out of bed, ready to confront the day. 

Not only have citrus oils like lemon been shown to improve focus, so this blend will have you feeling switched on and tuned in before you even reach for your morning coffee, but they’re also thought to reduce feelings of stress, depression, and anxiety. 

If you struggle to get out of bed in the morning or you’re trying to kick a caffeine dependence, getting some citrus going in your essential oil diffuser will not only make your whole place smell amazing, but it’ll help you get up on the right side of the bed without fail.

If You Need Help Relaxing

Like we said, whether you know it or not, you’ve probably felt the calming effects of essential oils at notoriously relaxing places like spas, salons, or even some exercise studios already. Essential oils can be a great way to help convince your brain to stop obsessing over all of the emails you’re going to have to send tomorrow and to create mental separation between the end of your workday and time you should devote to relaxing, which can be especially important if you work from home.

Lavender essential oil has a great ability to soothe, as does earthy cedarwood. Orange and ylang ylang will round out this calming blend, and help put you in the right mindset to let the stresses of the day go so you can take some time to yourself to recover and be totally ready to go tomorrow.

If Allergies Are Getting You Down

If you struggle with allergies at certain times of the year, or even if you’re just prone to a winter cold, there are certain essential oil blends that can be effective in helping to reduce your symptoms and get you feeling normal a little more quickly than you would have otherwise. 

Peppermint essential oil is good for fighting congestion, so you’ll want to pair a few drops of that with wellness-promoting lavender and focus-enhancing lemon to help get you back to your usually sharp and non-sniffly self in no time. If peppermint doesn’t do it for you, you could swap it out for eucalyptus, which has a similar effect on your poor sinuses.

If You’re Trying To Focus

Whether you work from home or keep a small yet stylish essential oil diffuser in your office, coming up with the right blend to help you find your focus can be key in powering through a daunting list of to-dos. This is one of the areas that essential oils really outshine scented candles. While the warm, gentle light of candles tends to bring to mind relaxation or romance, the right blend of essential oils in your diffuser can give your brain a real pick-me-up, and keep you focused longer.

Add a healthy amount of rosemary essential oil with a few drops of sandalwood. This earthy, complex blend won’t just smell amazing—both of these essential oils are thought to have a positive impact on your ability to get stuff done. If you think this scent could do with being a bit brighter, a drop or two of lemon is a great addition to this lineup.

In Conclusion

Whether you’re a lifelong devotee of essential oils or you’re just dipping your toes into the waters, understanding essential oil diffusers are a great way to work aromatherapy into your routine in a way that’s both effective and low effort. 

Especially if your house is full of scented candles or other devices that are meant to set the mood and tone for the day, switching to an essential oil diffuser can be just as good if not better, while also being more affordable and more versatile. You can change the scent and mood your diffuser puts out whenever you want—it’s as simple as changing the water.

Whatever mood or wellness problem you’re looking to improve, even if you just want to crank that atmosphere in your home or office up a few notches, an essential oil diffuser can help. Once you figure out the right blends to suit your tastes and needs, the sky is the limit!



Effects of Diffused Essential Oils for Reducing Stress and Improving Mood for Clinical Nurses: An Interventional Time Series Study | National Library of Medicine

The Effectiveness of Aromatherapy for Depressive Symptoms: A Systematic Review | National Library of Medicine

The Effects of Olfactory Stimuli on Scholastic Performance | The Irish Journal of Education

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