How to Extract Essential Oil Using Acetone

by Contributing Writer

Extract Essential Oil Using Acetone

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Making you own essential oils is possible and relatively simple, though the right solvent and procedure to extract the oils is necessary for a successful batch. While it may take practice to get the exact quality of essential oil that you want, the method is straight-forward and moderately forgiving. Learn what you need to do here and now to become an expert laboratory technician of oil extraction.

Items you will need

  • Acetone (available at your local pharmacy)
  • 2 medium-sized clean bowls
  • Potato masher (or similar implement to mash plant matter)
  • Cheese cloth (to strain liquid)
  • Rubber tube siphon
Step 1

Put the plant matter in a bowl and mash it up. Plants such as basil, thyme, lavender, even the peel off a lemon can be used. Place about five of the same plant tops and stems with their leaves (if appropriate) into a bowl. Mash them so that every stem and leaf has a cut opening to its inside juice. The overall effectiveness of your finished product can be guaranteed by the consistent and thorough pulverizing of your plant matter.

Step 2

Pour the acetone solvent in the bowl containing the plant mash. Be sure that all parts of the plant mash are completely covered by the Acetone.

Step 3

Store your bowl of "solution" in a well-ventilated, cool place---preferably outside. While it is important that your solution stays cool to do its magic, be certain it is also sheltered from direct sunlight, flying insects and other such typical outside irk. A screened porch can be the perfect solution for your solution. Wait 1 week.

Step 4

Filter the mash after the week waiting period. Take the cheesecloth and cover the opening of the bowl with it. Gently separate the plant matter from the liquid by pouring the liquid substance into another bowl. You should have two liquids now, one on top of the other.

Step 5

Draw off the top liquid oil using the rubber tube siphon. This top oil is the essential oil. You may even siphon off the bottom half of the two-tone liquid---which is the left-over water and whatever impurities that were present in the solution during its process time.

Warnings

  • Don't let pets drink from the solution of plant matter and acetone. It will make them sick and could be potentially fatal.

Photo Credits

  • Free Stock Photos for websites - FreeDigitalPhotos.net, morgueFile.com