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Aromatherapaes Ingredient Dictionary

This is a comprehensive list of every ingredient in our Aromatherapaes products. We use the technical or chemical CTFA names verses the generalized “natural” or familiar names in all of our product’s ingredient listings. You may be sensitive to a solvent or preservative used in a familiar extract, and with this style of labeling you will be aware it is in the product when making your buying decisions.

Our goal is to use the safest, most natural and effective ingredients to make the most beneficial and healthful skincare products. Sometimes this means the synthetic or extracted form of an ingredient is safer than other alternatives. We have nothing to hide - each ingredient is reviewed for safety and benefit before our formulators incorporate it into a product.

Technical or CTFA INCI Name

Description, Common Name

Function -Purpose in Products

Abies Balsamea (Fir) Oil

Fir Essential Oil

Known for aromatherapeutic benefits for arthritis, bronchitis, colds, coughs, flu, muscle aches, rheumatism, and sinusitis.


Derived from the herb Comfrey

Encourages cell regeneration (speeds up the natural replacement of body cells).

Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice

The filtered liquid from the pulpy leaves of the Aloe Vera plant

Naturally antiseptic, encourages cell regeneration while calming skin irritations. Mild, natural sun screen benefits.

Aniba Rosaeodora (Rosewood) Oil

Rosewood Essential Oil from bark of the Rosewood Tree

Rich in linalool with smaller amounts of terpineol, nerol, geraniol

Aromatherapeutic benefits include tonic effect for entire body, an immune system stimulant and cell regenerator. Pleasant warm odor.

Anthemis Nobilis (Roman Chamomile) Oil

Chamomile Essential Oil

Topical aromatherapeutic benefits include soothing, calming irritated skin, anti-inflammatory. Calming inhalation benefits.

Bambusa Vulgaris Extract


Bamboo Extract

Natural exfoliant – polishes and smoothes skin.

Behentrimonium Methosulfate

Rape Seed Oil contains both Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids

The mildest hair detangling ingredient available.



Protects against both UVA and UVB rays.

Butylene Glycol

A common humectant and solubilizer used in cosmetic and food preparations.

Used in wash off hydrating masks and in some extracts.

Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter)

Shea Butter – the solid “oil” from the nut of the African Karite Tree.

Moisturizing, promotes cell renewal and skin elasticity, and increases circulation. Contains cinnamic acid, a substance that helps protect the skin from harmful UV rays. Contains vitamins A and E, and has demonstrated both antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.

C13-14 Isoparaffin


Low hazard synthetic thickener or gelling agent.

Camellia Oleifera (Green Tea) Leaf Extract

Green Tea Extract

The leaf of this plant is an antioxidant. When applied topically, it helps to protect the skin from the effects of free radicals in the environment. The leaf extract is also known for its soothing properties.

Canola Oil

Canola Oil

Vegetable seed oil to protect against moisture loss.

Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride

A fatty anti-oxidant made from mixing coconut oil and vegetable glycerin

Used to keep oils fresh and from turning rancid.

Caprylyl Capryl Glucoside

Vegetable foaming agent

Safe, mild foaming agent made from vegetable source. Sometimes used to emulsify essential oils (keep oil mixed into water).


Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil

Thistle Oil, Sunflower Oil. Oil presses from the seeds of the safflower plant is similar in chemistry to sunflower oil

Rich in palmitic and linoleic acid, this oil provides a non-greasy slip for massage.

Cera Alba (Beeswax)


A replenishable, non-petroleum wax used to stiffen emulsions or balms. Protects against moisture loss.

Cetearyl Alcohol

Emulsifying wax from palm oil

Supports the main emulsion system in creams and lotions and gives texture to the product. In conditioners it helps to emulsify the product and creates a thickening effect.

Cetearyl Olivate


Soap and PEG-free emulsifier made from fruit sugars

Facilitates retention of skin moisture and increases the active ingredient's resistance to water and/or sweat.

Cetrimonium Methosulfate

A cationic (non-static) emulsifier derived from rapeseed oil

Used in hair conditioners where you want slip and shine without a heavy feel. Reduces fly-aways.

Cetyl Alcohol

A waxy flake derived from coconut or palm oil

Used in the cosmetic industry as a surfactant in shampoos, or as an emollient, emulsifier or thickening agent in the manufacture of skin creams and lotions.


Vitamin D3 (vegetable source)

Works with Vitamin A to synergistically offer the best free radical protection, and to promote the growth of new epidermal and collagen cells.

Citric Acid

Citric Acid – most often derived from citrus fruits

Mild preservative and antioxidant. Can be used to lower pH in finished products to make them more skin-friendly. When mixed with bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) it creates carbon dioxide which are the bubbles or fizz in our Effervescents.

Citrus Aurantium (Neroli) Orange Flower Oil

Neroli Essential Oil from orange flower blossoms

Encourages healthy cell renewal. Aromatherapy: reduces anxiety; calming effects.

Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergamot) Fruit Extract

Bergamot Essential Oil

Light, delicate and refreshing citrus floral oil with antiseptic properties and the ability to help uplift the mind, relieving anxiety and nervous tension.

Citrus Aurantium Dulcis (Orange) Oil

Orange Essential Oil

Uplifting and cheerful aromatherapy benefits. Topical cleansing agent with warm, clean aroma.

Citrus Medica Limonum (Lemon) Peel Oil

Lemon Essential Oil

Refreshing and uplifting aromatherapy benefits. Topical cleansing agent with sharp, clean aroma.

Citrus Paradisi Oil

Grapefruit Essential Oil

A cheerful essential oil. One of the few non-sun sensitizing citrus oils

Citrus Reticulate (Tangerine) Oil

Tangerine Essential Oil

Cheerful and uplifting aromatherapy benefits. Topical cleansing agent with sweet, clean aroma.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine

A semi synthetic foamer derived from coconut oil

Mild, soap-free cleanser.

Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine

A semi synthetic foamer derived from coconut oil

Mildest, soap-free cleanser.

Cucumus Sativus (Cucumber) Fruit Extract

Cucumber Extract

Cooling and refreshing to the skin; shown to be moisture-binding and moisture-regulating with skin softening properties.





Silicones synthetically made from common sand and oxygen molecules

Inert “oils” that help spread actives on the skin.


With molecules too large for your skin to absorb, they evaporate, leaving behind the actives.

Cymbopogon Citratus (Lemongrass) Oil

Lemongrass Essential Oil

Tonic, stimulating (cell renewal), refreshing, deodorizing, antiseptic, insect repelling properties.

Decyl Glucoside

Plant based silicon replacement for hair care

Conditions hair for smoother, shinier look and feel.

Dicaprylyl Ether

Vegetable based emollient

Soft feeling skin that holds moisture longer

Disodium Cocyl Glutamate

Echinacea purpurea

An extremely gentle cleaning and foaming agent derived from  coconut oil fatty acid

 Functions as an extremely mild, gently sudsing surfactant. Protects against damage from free radicals.

Disodium EDTA

Chelating agent

EDTA binds to metals, such as nickel, copper, and iron, making them unavailable to react with other ingredients in a product. Also taken orally for chelation therapy.


Derived from vegetable glycerin; natural deodorizer and skin conditioner

Boosts preservative efficacy, while adding humectancy and a pleasant skin-feel to formulations.

Eucalyptus Globulus (Eucalyptus) Oil

Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Decongestant, antibacterial and anti-viral properties make it effective for treating respiratory infections. Effective easing sore muscles, especially after exercise or strain.

Gluconolactone & Sodium Benzoate

a naturally derived (from corn) preservative system with proven skincare benefits

 Keeps products safe and fresh.


A sugar alcohol bi-product from making soap. Vegetable soap makes vegetable glycerin.

A natural humectant and moisture magnet.

Glyceryl Isostearate

Glyceryl Stearate

Glycerin and stearic acid (see stearic acid)

Vegetable based moisturizer and emulsifier helps hold lotion products together.

Glycol Distearate

Stearic Acid and Ethylene Glycol (see)

Vegetable based moisturizer and emulsifier helps hold lotion products together.

Helianthus Annuus Seed Oil 

Sunflower Seed Oil

Vitamin E rich moisture for skin



Naturally anti-septic and moisture binding.

Hydrogenated Polyisobutene

Synthetic polymer (replaces whale source).

Used as a skin-conditioning agent and emollient.

Hydrolyzed Oats

Oatmeal, Oat Extract

Anti-irritant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein

Solid form of Wheat Protein from vegetable seed oil.

Strengthens hair and dermal layer.

Hydroxypropyl Starch Phosphate


Corn Starch

Low hazard way of amplifying active ingredients.


Guar Gum extract

Hair conditioner and smoother; helps detangle dry or damaged hair.

Isopropyl Palmitate

Palm oil based emollient

Moisturizer, thickening agent, and anti-static in lotions and hair care.

Jasminium Officinalis Flower Extract

Jasmine Flower Extract 

Stress relieving essential oil wonderful for treating extremely dry, oily or irritated and sensitive skin

Juglans Regia (Walnut) Shell Powder

Walnut shell

Natural exfoliant. We use milled “balls” that roll verses jagged chips so you don’t tear your skin.

Juniperus Communis (Juniper) Oil

Juniper Essential Oil

Tonic, purifying, diuretic and detoxifying.


China Clay

Absorbency makes it useful in masks or detoxifying baths.




Modified Palm or Coconut oil to create a synthetic

Used as a foam booster, emulsifier and thickener in foaming products.

Lauryl Glucoside

A mild coconut and sugar foaming ingredient used as a replacement for sulfates

Gently cleanses skin

Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil

Lavandula Hybrida Oil

Lavender Essential Oil

Aromatherapy: calming, balancing; promotes healing. Pleasant, clean odor.

Magnesium Sulfate

Epsom Salts

Increases circulation and detoxifies body. Helpful in reducing aches and pains, inflammation or swelling.


Rice, corn or potato starch

A sweetener and thickener in food. Used to make bath fizzies hard.

Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Oil

Tea (Ti) Tree Essential Oil

Active against all three categories of infectious organisms: bacteria, fungi and viruses.  Powerful immuno-stimulant. Useful in acne and foot care products.

Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil

Peppermint Essential Oil

Known for its physically refreshing, cooling, bactericidal and anti-irritant properties. Mentally stimulating and concentration-boosting aromatherapy benefits.


Menthol (derived from Mint)

A natural dilator that increases circulation and triggers the cold-sensitive nerves in the skin without actually providing a drop in temperature.

Monarda Didyma (Bee Balm) Leaf Extract

Bee Balm, Horsemint or Oswego Tea Extract

Antiseptic action makes useful for healing dry, irritated skin, minor skin irritations or wounds.


Green Clay

Mineral known for healing and detoxifying benefits.

Myristica Fragrans (Nutmeg) Kernel Oil

Nutmeg Essential Oil

A warming, circulation stimulant helpful in reducing muscle and joint pain.



Protects oils and essential oils from oxidizing and turning the product yellow or altering its aroma.

Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil

Olive Oil ~ the pulp of the Olive contains both saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. It is made up of a high quantity of Vitamin E-rich unsaturated Oleic Acid.

This warming oil restores moisture and nourishment to dry, rough skin. When saponified (made into liquid or bar soap), olive oil is very gentle.


Little beads of moisture found in fruit and vegetable seed oils

 Moisturizing oils similar to your skin’s own lipids keep skin soft

Palm Kernel Glycerides

Palm Oil Wax

Used to provide consistency and emolliancy.


Non-irritating form of Vitamin B from plant materials: B5

Used as a humectant, emollient and moisturizer in skin and hair care products.

PEG 7 Glyceryl Cocoate

Water and alcohol soluble emollient derived from coconut oil and glycerin 

Emulsifier: keeps water and oil in suspension so you don’t have to shake your lotion products.

PEG-100 Stearate

Natural vegetable oils combined with stearic acid 

Used as an emollient, an emulsifier and a moisturizer.



Polyethylene glycol

Binder and humectant. Used as solvent in creating herbal extracts.

Pelargonium, Graveolens (Geranium) Oil

Geranium Essential Oil pressed from the leaves of pelargoniums

Astringent, antiseptic with aromatherapeutic benefits of energy balance, adrenal regulator, lymphatic stimulant and anti depressant. Helpful for PMS and menopausal symptoms.

Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil

Avocado Oil pressed from the pulp ~ a rich and extremely deep penetrating oil rich in vitamins A, D and E, lecithin, as well as potassium

A deep penetrating oil useful in moisturizing dehydrated or undernourished skin.


Non-toxic preservative

Keeps product fresh without more irritating preservatives. Formaldehyde and paraben-free.



Binder, film former, fixative often used in hair styling or face mask products.


Non-toxic “quat”

Antistatic agent, film former and hair fixative.

Polysorbate 20, Polysorbate 6


Emulsifier for blending oil and water.

Potassium Sorbate

Potassium salt of sorbic acid

Safe, food preservative. Used to replace parabens in products with low pH.

PPG-3 Benzyl Ether Myristate

Silicone substitute

Foam stabilizer, film former, adds shine to hair and slip to lotions.


Fermented Corn Sugar *

*Can also be a synthetic glycol, but S&V uses the natural form*

Humectant, moisture binder.

Propylene Glycol

Derivative of natural gas. It is commonly used in a variety of consumer products and food products, including deodorants, pharmaceuticals, moisture lotions, and fat-free ice cream

Wetting agent for natural gums to simplify compounding. Humectant, preservative and stabilizer in diverse product applications.

Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Extract

Sweet Almond Extract

Almond Oil

Carrier oil for aromatherapy that softens and conditions the skin. Pleasant almond aroma.

Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil

Apricot Kernel Oil ~ contains essential fatty acids (Oleic and Linoleic) and is high in Vitamins A & E

Helps sooth irritated or delicate skin while also moisturizing. Readily absorbs without greasy feeling.


Corn Starch derivative

Multifunctional hair conditioning agent ~ reduces static and frizz.

Retinyl Palmitate

A stable version of Vitamin A

A skin normalizer helping to balance all skin types by penetrating the skin. A powerful anti-oxidant that increases skin elasticity, yielding younger looking skin.

Rose Canina (Rose Hips) Fruit Extract

Rose Hip Extract from the seed pod of the wild rose (rosa canina)

Naturally high in flavanoids and antioxidant Vitamin C

Rich in antioxidants, it is comprised of Vitamins A, C and E, helping to fight free radical damage and promote new cell growth. Linoleic and Linolenic essential fatty acids, supporting the skin’s elasticity and keeping it well-nourished. This easily absorbed oil is often used to heal scars and damaged skin.

Rosmarinus Officinalis Oil

Rosemary Essential Oil

Characterized by the strength of the sun’s heat, Rosemary stimulates the circulation and the metabolism. It is also used to treat poorly healing wounds and eczema. Has an overall stimulating and invigorating effect that works on both mental and physical levels.

Sea Salts

Sea Salts

Replenishes minerals in bath soak. Sometimes used to thicken foaming products or as exfoliant in scrubs.

Simmondsia Chinensus Oil

Jojoba Oil

This oil, classified as a wax, is easily absorbed by the skin and is especially beneficial in treating inflamed and irritated skin conditions.

Sodium Chloride

Sea Salts

S&V usesPacific oceansea salts that are solar dried to avoid using kiln fuel

These opaque white crystals easily absorb water and draw fluids outwards. The osmotic action of salt tones and stimulates. Salt is cleansing and purifying and improves capillary circulation. It also keeps your tub water warmer for a longer soak.


Mineral found in sandstone and clay


Sodium Benzoate

See Gluconolacatone (preservative)


Sodium Bicarbonate

Baking Soda

Cleanse, freshen, exfoliate or adjust the pH of a formula. Used in soaks, scrubs.

Sodium Borate


Buffering agent used in small quantities to adjust pH.

Sodium Coco-Sulfate

Coconut foamer. Naturally derived from coconuts – a safer alternative to SLES

Used as foaming agent in gentle shampoos and washes.

Sodium Hydroxide


Used to saponify (make soap) from oils. The process uses up the lye without leaving any residue in the finished product.

Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate


Coconut foamer – mild and biodegradable

Used as foaming agent in gentle shampoos and washes.

Sodium Polyacrylate

Salt as a water crystal

Can absorb 200-300 times its weight in water to provide “continuous” hydration in a moisturizer.

Sodium Stearoyl Glutamate


Natural skin and hair conditioner.

Sodium Tripolyphosphate

Water softener and food preservative from Phosphoric Acid

Helps ingredients blend into and bond with water.

Sorbitan Olivate

Soap and PEG-free emulsifier made from olive oil

Facilitates retention of skin moisture and increases the active ingredient's resistance to water and/or sweat.




Helps oil and water blend into creamy mixtures.

Stearyl Citrate

Food ingredient used to chelate metal ions that might be present in raw materials

Helps limit rancidity in finished products so they last longer 

Tapioca Starch

Tapioca Starch extracted from the root of the plant species Manihot esculenta.

Natural vegetable thickener.

Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter

Cocoa Butter - this vegetable oil is derived from the seeds of the tropical Cacao tree

This solid oil or butter softens the skin and protects it against environmental influences.


Vitamin E

Used as an anti-oxidant to preserve ingredients and keep them from turning rancid.

Tocopheryl Acetate

Vitamin E

The skin-usable form of Vitamin E. Antioxidant prevents inflammation. Protects skin’s natural lipids (moisture).


Synthetic made from ammonia. Used in minute levels to keep bio-activity in some natural extracts. Often not even listed on labels that list “extracts” as a whole vs breaking apart technical names of all components.

Buffer, controls or stabilizes pH.

Vanilla Planifolia (Vanilla) Fruit Oil

Vanilla Extract

Soothing scent from Vanilla Bean pods (aromachology).

Vitis Vinifera Seed Oil

Grapeseed Oil

Mildly astringent qualities help to tighten and tone the skin, making it a good ingredient for anti-aging.

Xanthan Gum

Fermented Corn Sugar

This gum agent serves as a stabilizer and emulsifier, as well as a foam enhancer and thickener.

Zea Mays (Corn) Oil

Corn Kernel Oil

Used as base for Vitamin D3.

Zingiber Officinalis (Ginger) Oil

Ginger Essential Oil

Stimulating oil used in aromatherapy to treat fatigue, and muscular or joint pain.