Aromatherapy is a term coined by French chemist René Maurice Gattefossé in the 1920's to describe the practice of using essential oils taken from plants, flowers, roots, seeds, etc., in healing. The term is a bit misleading, since the aromas of oils, whether natural or synthetic, are generally not themselves therapeutic. Aromas are used to identify the oils, to determine adulteration, and to stir the memory, but not to directly bring about a cure or healing. It is the "essence" of the oil--its chemical properties--that gives it whatever therapeutic value the oil might have. Furthermore, vapors are used in some but not all cases of aromatherapy. In most cases, the oil is rubbed onto the skin or ingested in a tea or other liquid. Some aromatherapists even consider cooking with herbs a type of aromatherapy. The healing power of essential oils is the main attraction in aromatherapy.

Index of the Properties of Oils

digestive:
carminative
cholagogue
hepatic
laxative
for:
carminative
cholagogue
hepatic
laxative
cholagogue
laxative
for:

diarrhoea

genito-urinary:
diuretic
emmenagogue
for:
menstrual cramps

respiratory:
for:
asthma
catarrh

coughing
sinusitis
sore throat

circulatory:
depurative
for:
hypertension
hypotension
to:
improve circulation

muscles/joints:
aches and pains

general:
febrifuge
deodorants

beauty care:
skin types:
dry skin 
dull, congested skin
oily skin 
conditions:
acne
broken capillaries
cellulite
hair care
inflammation
varicose veins
wrinkles

mind/emotions.
to clear the head
improve memory
for depression 
for headache 

accidents:
bruises
burns
insect bites
scars
wounds