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Discussion Starter #1
so, I've been tinkering with using essential oils the last couple of years. very pleased with the results. but, I'm interested in the actually equipment and methods of distilling them myself at home. no experience myself with how it's actually done. would like to ask for your wisdom and experience on this. thanks.
 

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Sorry, never done it. I believe you need a distiller, just like making moonshine. I’m sure you can find a blog on making a little one. You can buy a distiller for making essential oils, but they are expensive. I looked into it and realized it was way cheaper for me to just buy what I need. But, if you make it yourself you have so much control over the product. Would you sell it?
 

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I have a couple of distillers now and making essential oils out of an herb is an almost impossible process.

It takes pounds and pounds and pounds and pounds to get just a small amount of essential oil through distillation.
And even the essential oils that come in the little jars are mixed with carrier oils.

You can get a bit more oil with chemical extraction, but it's a nasty process.

When I distill I use about a liter or a bit less of herbs or blossoms and about that in water.
Out of that I get 1/16 of a teaspoon or less of pure, real, actual essential oil.
But it is pure.
Now, separating that out is an entirely different process.

I prefer to make distillates, which have the oil, but also the phyto-nutrients of the plant all in one.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I prefer to make distillates, which have the oil, but also the phyto-nutrients of the plant all in one.
What is the difference in making distilled oil vs. distillates. i'm still a total newbie collecting essential oils and playing with them to see what works for different things. just starting to try and look into how they're made and if it's something I can tackle trying. never crossed the word distillates yet.
 

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The distillate is water, the water soluble(heat sensitive) phyto-nutrients and a bit of essential oil.
It is where all essential oils come from.
First they have the distillate, the water that comes out of the distiller with the essential oils floating on top.
Then they separate the two.

What they have then is essential oil in one container and a 'hydrosol' in the other.

I call my products 'complete distillates' because I do not separate the oil from the water. I leave it all together. Complete.
 

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Piney Girl
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chickenista,

Thanks for all of the info, which of your distillers would you consider overall best? i.e. best value, easiest to use, that kind of best, lol.

Do you use any to make soap? Essential oils are soo expensive, but really make a difference in a soap.

Thanks, sorry if I am highjacking.
 

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I don't have the funds to test and play around with different varieties.
Would love to, but ain't happening.

There is a huge learning curve with it though.

With some herbs, the time is short.
With others it is long..
Finding the right temperature for each plant.

Dealing with the temperature inside the house and the volatiles of each plant.
With some I have to wrap the condenser, with others I don't etc..

And I have a BFF that makes the world's best soaps..ever. Seriously.
So I don't have to deal with it.
But if she passes, I get her business.
She also makes the world's best hair conditioner.
 
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