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What is an absolute and how is it obtained? Another method of extraction used on delicate plants is solvent extraction which yields a higher amount of essential oil at a lower cost. In this process, a chemical solvent such as hexane is used to saturate the plant material and pull out the aromatic compounds. This renders a substance called a concrete. A concrete looks and feels similar to solid wax and is insoluble both in water and in alcohol.

The concrete can then be dissolved in alcohol to remove the solvent. When the alcohol evaporates, a substance called an absolute remains. Some of the absolutes we offer are vanilla absolute, beeswax absolute, violet leaf absolute, cistus absolute, jasmine absolute, jasmine sambac absolute, lavender absolute, mimosa absolute, oakmoss absolute, rose absolute and ylang ylang absolute.

Whereas essential oils are steam distilled, absolutes are more concentrated and are extracted through the use of a solvent such as hexane. Most of the solvent is removed during the final stages of production and, if any is left, the amount is negligible. Absolutes are usually thicker than most essential oils, are highly aromatic and may solidify at room temperature. WE WILL NOT ACCEPT A RETURN of an absolute because it’s thicker than you expected and/or you cannot work with it. Please order a sample first if you have doubts.

Absolutes are used extensively in perfumery (some call them perfumery oils) rather than in aromatherapy because they do not offer any skin care benefits nor do they offer the therapeutic benefits essential oils offer. (Source: Aromatherapy: Essential Oils for Vibrant Health and Beauty by Roberta Wilson). Absolutes tend to smell more like the real plant or flower than essential oils. Some absolutes may have a consistency similar to honey while some may be extremely thick and may not be entirely soluble in alcohol.

Concretes and absolutes are not used much for making soap because (a) of the expense (b) they’re delicate to work with and (c) some soapmakers may not be comfortable using a product that has been extracted with a solvent as is the case with absolutes. If you decide to use one of our absolutes for making soap, you’ll have to find a way to make them work for you, we cannot offer assistance with this, we don’t make soap, we don’t make toiletries, we sell supplies and raw materials. You could post your questions or formulating problems on our Forum, perhaps a member can help you, please look for the link to our Forum at the bottom of all our pages.

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Best Soap Making Supplier. Top Quality Essential Oils, Perfumery & Soap Making Raw Materials Online Supplier, 5751 Halifax Ave., Unit 2 Fort Myers, FL 33912 US. Information and statements about the products on this site have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. You should not use the information contained herein for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease or for prescribing any medication. If you have or believe that you have a medical problem, contact your health care provider. All the products offered on this website are for external use only.