Essential oil diffusers? Simple, right? I mean, how much do you really need to know about them? You just fill them with water, throw in some essential oils and away you go… don’t you? Well, it turns out there’s a little more to it than that! So, here are 5 things I bet you didn’t know about your diffuser. #5 is very cool! And along the way I’ve thrown in some great tips to get the most benefits from diffusing essential oils for you and your family.
#1 Add the essential oil first
Yes, that’s right! If you’re like me, when I first started using essential oils in a diffuser, I carefully put in the water first and then added the drops of essential oil. Don’t get me wrong, that will still work fine. But you’ll get a much more even diffusion of essential oil if you do it the other way around.
When you put the essential oil into the diffuser first and then add the water, the pressure of the water as you pour it in breaks up the oil drops and begins to spread the smaller droplets throughout the reservoir of the diffuser. Then, when you switch the diffuser on, it gives a more even diffusion of the essential oil over time.
And just so you know, this principle also applies when you use essential oils in your bath or in your water bottle. Always add the essential oils before you add the water.
#2 Filtered water is (probably) the best option (for you and your diffuser)
There are a few different views out there about what sort of water you should be using in your diffuser. When you look at the instruction booklets for Young Living’s diffusers they say different things, depending on which diffuser you’re using. So, let me make it easier for you!
Young Living says that you can use tap water or filtered water with its old Dewdrop diffuser. This is the diffuser that lots of people first started with, as it came in their Premium Starter Kit (PSK). They recommend the same for the Rainstone diffuser. But, they recommend that you used filtered water or distilled water with the Desert Mist, Lantern and Aria diffusers.
Why do I suggest filtered water as the best option? Here are a few reasons:
- Tap water has more minerals in it. That actually helps the diffuser to work better as the essential oils bind more easily to the tiny water droplets the diffuser creates. But, your tap water is likely to have more impurities in it. You’ll be breathing those in, which will also leave a residue in your diffuser. That means you’ll need to clean it more often.
- Distilled water is purer, but the distillation process also removes many of those ionic minerals. Distilled water is also expensive! But the good news is it won’t leave a residue like tap water might.
- Filtered water gives you the best of both worlds – it’s cheap, it has less impurities than tap water, but it also has more minerals in it than distilled water. That’s why it’s my preferred option to use in the diffuser.
You see, it’s hard to go wrong with filtered water. Of course, it’s totally up to you and if you have clean, ‘soft’ tap water it’s still going to work fine.
#3 Diffusers are NOT ‘all the same’
Here’s another thing I bet you didn’t know about your diffuser… or maybe you did! It makes me smile when people say to me, “I don’t need a Young Living diffuser. I’ll just grab one from Target.” Why do I smile? Because diffusers ain’t diffusers, Sol!
As tempting as it is to save money and buy an ‘el cheapo’ diffuser, here are two reasons why that might end up being a false economy:
- They make most cheap diffusers out of cheap plastic. That’s a problem because essential oils eat away at many plastics. In fact, your cheap diffuser isn’t going to last very long before the plastic starts to deteriorate. And that’s your money gone down the drain.
- Diffusers (good diffusers) create millions of micro-particles of water and essential oil by the vibration of the ultrasonic plate. You can see the plate at the bottom of the diffuser. It vibrates at a frequency of over 2 million cycles per second – a frequency far higher than you can hear or see.
But, a cheap diffuser won’t have a high-quality ultrasonic plate. This means it won’t work as effectively, nor is it likely to last as long as a better one.
By the way, it’s good to clean the ultrasonic plate every so often – Young Living recommend using isopropyl alcohol on a cotton bud to get rid of any oil residue or minerals from the water.
I was fascinated to see this visual comparison between two diffusers. That’s the Young Living Desert Mist on the left and a ‘cheapy’ one on the right. You can see how much more effective the Desert Mist is!
#4 There’s a fan that helps spread the micro-particles of water and essential oil
Yes, that stream of fragrant mist emerging from your diffuser is propelled by a fan inside. One other characteristic of cheap diffusers is they often have fans that are louder and not very effective. But there’s one other important thing you need to know about the fan.
For the fan to work properly you need to have good fan clearance underneath your diffuser. If you’ve got it sitting on a bear skin rug or woollen blanket or a pile of sand (unlikely, I know, but it’s possible!) then the fan isn’t going to be able to work well. Make sure your diffuser is sitting on a solid, flat surface.
#5 I bet you didn’t know you could get a diffuser with no water
Sometimes you may not want a diffuser that adds extra moisture to the air in your house. For example, if you have a house where mould is a problem you will want to limit the amount of moisture. That’s where an atomizing diffuser comes in.
Instead of mixing essential oil and water and then turning it into micro-particles ultrasonically, an atomizing diffuser ‘atomises’ the essential oil using a high-pressure stream of air. This has a couple of benefits. As I said, it means you’re not adding any extra moisture to the air. The other benefit is that it delivers a higher concentration of essential oil than an ultrasonic diffuser as it’s not diluted by water. This can be useful for more therapeutic uses of essential oils.
Young Living have a beautifully-designed, high-tech atomizing diffuser – the AromaLux™. It looks space-age and it has lots of options in terms of essential oil concentration, diffusion time and you can even cycle between diffusion and breaks. It also works really well with Young Living’s Thieves essential oil blend to help kill airborne bacteria.
That was just a few things you (possibly) didn’t know about your diffuser
Did you discover anything you didn’t know before? Honestly, I’m always learning something new – about diffusing or about these amazing essential oils and how they can benefit me and my family.
Tell me, what do you love about your diffuser? I’m always interested to hear your stories. You can send me an email or DM me on Instagram (@hotoilymumma).
And if you haven’t got a diffuser yet, by far the easiest and best way to get one – plus a supply of the world’s greatest essential oils – it to grab a Premium Starter Kit from Young Living. Just head to my Getting Started page – it’s SO simple! Or contact me and I can help you get started.
And for more information on which amazing diffuser to buy, check out my post here.