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Glossary of Terms

Abortifacient: capable of inducing abortion

Absolute: a highly concentrated, semi-sold or solid perfume material, usually obtained by extraction of the concrete.

Adaptogen: a substance that causes beneficial adaptive change to take place in the body

Allergy: hypersensitivity to a foreign substance

Analgesic: remedy or agent that deadens pain

Anaphrodisiac: reduces sexual desire

Anodyne: stills pain and quiets disturbed feelings

Anosmic: complete loss of smell, temporary or permanent

Antidepressant: relieves depression

Antibiotic: prevents the growth of or destroys bacteria, also known as antibacterial

Antiemetic: reduces the incidence of nausea or vomiting

Anti-fungal: reduces or prevents the growth of fungus

Anti-inflammatory: alleviates inflammation

Antioxidant: prevents or delays oxidation

Antiseptic: destroys and prevents the development of microbes

Antitussive: relieves coughs

Antiviral: inhibits the growth of a virus

Aphrodisiac: stimulates sexual desire

Aromatic: substance with an aroma or smell

Astringent: cause contraction of organic tissues, closes pores

Balsam: a resinous semi-sold mass or viscous liquid exuded from a plant

Base Oil: *see carrier oil

Carrier Oil: a non-volatile, fatty oil derived from a plant source, low in aroma and is often benign

Chemotype: Variation in the chemical composition of an essential oil produced from two or more plants of the same species.

Compress: an absorbent piece of material pressed to the skin to reduce inflammation

Concrete: a concentrate, waxy, sold or semi-sold material prepared from natural materials often which an absolute is produced

Cutaneous: pertaining to the skin

Decoction: a herbal preparation, where the plant material is boiled in water and reduced to make a concentrated extract

Decongestive: and agent for the relief or reduction of congestion

Deodorant: removes, corrects or masks unpleasant aromas

Diffuser: a glass, ceramic or metal device to put aroma into the air, usually with a heat source such as a candle or light bulb

Dysmenorrhea: painful and difficult menstruation

Emmenagogue: induces or assists menstruation

Emollient: softens and soothes the skin

Enfleurage: a method of extraction, rarely used today, a fat method to extract aromatic substances

Essential Oil: a volatile and aromatic liquid which generally constitutes the odorous principles of a plant, and is obtained by a process of distillation or expression

Fixative: a material that slows down the rate of evaporation of the more volatile components in a perfume

Fixed Oil: non-volatile, meaning no evaporation, vegetable derived

Fragrance Oil: synthetic aromatic material created in a laboratory

Hydrosol: the distillate water that is produced from the distillation process, the steam that has been cooled

Hypertension: raised blood pressure

Hypnotic: caused sleep

Hypotensive: agent that lowers blood pressure

Infusion: a herbal remedy prepared by steeping plant material in water

Olfaction: sense of smell

Pomade: a prepared aromatic substance usually obtained by enfleurage

Sedative: relaxes and/or induces sleep

Stimulant: increases the functions of the body

Synergy: two or more agents working harmoniously together

Tincture: a herbal remedy or perfumery ingredient prepared in alcohol

Volatile: unstable, evaporates easily, or an essential oil