Personal Diffuser: A Household Necessity

doTERRA Pedal personal diffuserThe use of a personal diffuser in aromatherapy brings about a soothing and healthful bit of contentment to life. Diffusers offer several therapeutic benefits.  You will be eliminating stress and feel refreshed at the same time using unique blends of aromatic essential oils.  Today, personal diffusers come in all shapes and sizes for a variety of different applications.  In this post, we’ll highlight a few of the reasons why we think a diffuser is an absolute necessity, and why they are beneficial.  Plus, we take a look at the different kinds and how they work.

So, What’s a Diffuser?

First, and foremost, a diffuser is not a humidifier.   The primary purpose of a humidifier is to add moisture to the air in a room.  In dry climates and when using the heater in the home during the fall and winter, there is less moisture in the air.  Dry air creates dry skin, as well as bacterial and viral problems (not to mention static electricity).  Many humidifiers available today do not support essential oils because of the plastic components in the humidifier.

Diffusers, on the other hand, circulate essential oils into the air. reed personal diffuserYou may be familiar with a reed diffuser which works by allowing essential oil to evaporate from reed sticks (or bamboo skewers). Unfortunately, the aroma from a reed diffuser can be overpowering to begin and then weaken quickly over time.  Today, diffusers are specifically designed for circulating (or diffusing) a fine mist of essential oils into the air for aromatherapy purposes.  There are four basic types of diffusers: nebulizing, ultrasonic, evaporative and heat diffusers.

Nebulizing Diffusers work with air.  A stream of pressurized air is forced through the essential oil to atomize the oil into microparticles into the environment.  Considered the most powerful, and the aroma of the essential oil is strongest of the four types of diffusers.  All of the essential oil disperses into the air.  However, nebulizers do not work well with the more viscous (thick) oils.  When using thicker oils, it is best to blend them with a thinner oil, or a carrier oil.

Ultrasonic Diffusers are similar to nebulizing diffusers but use water to aid in dispensing the essential oils.  The oils are added to a reservoir of water. Ultrasonic vibrations agitate the water causing water particles to release the essential oil as negative ions into the air.  Ultrasonic diffusers are not as powerful as the nebulizing diffusers due to a milder concentration of oil.

Evaporative Diffusers scatter the essential oil aroma from a filter or pad as the oil naturally evaporates into the surrounding air. These are considered personal diffusers as they work best in small, confined areas.  Some evaporative diffusers have a fan to help spread the essential oil further.

Heat Diffusers as the name implies, uses heat to evaporate and diffuse the essential oil.  Heat diffusers are suitable for small, closed areas and are more of a personal diffuser.  One negative of these is the heat can affect the chemical makeup of the oil, making a low heat source (like a candle) better.

Nebulizing and Ultrasonic Diffusers work without denaturing the oils and diffuse oil into a larger area while evaporative and heat diffusers work well in scattering the fragrance in a smaller area.

Why Use a Personal Diffuser?

There are several reasons for using a diffuser, mood enhancement as a part of aromatherapy is a favorite reason. However, diffusers can also help rid an area of germs in the air to ward off illness and help make breathing easier and even repel insects.


Perhaps one of the better-known reasons for diffusing essential oils is their ability to help you unwind at the end of the day. While there are several methods for getting soothing oils into the bloodstream, the diffuser is the easiest and longest-lasting. Keep a diffuser on your bedside table to help your mind and body relax so you can sleep better at night.  We recommend using Lavender essential oil or Serenity essential oil blend to help you get a restful night’s sleep.  You can also keep a diffuser at the office to help you relax on your lunch break or during a stressful phone call.

Mood Elevation

Just as a diffuser and the right essential oil can help you to de-stress during the day, they can also create an energizing atmosphere. Use your diffuser to set a positive environment for business meetings and social gatherings, to help you get moving on a slow morning, or help when you are suffering a creative block.   You can also use a diffuser to create a romantic atmosphere.  We recommend using Wild Orange or Peppermint for an uplifting or energizing mood.

Ward off Illness

A diffuser is a great way to keep seasonal threats at bay.   The diffuser works on a couple of levels. First, many essential oils are powerfully anti-microbial and anti-bacterial.  The organic compounds within the oils can help kill airborne pathogens before they can invade your body. Additionally, essential oils can also be used to boost the immune system.  We recommend using Lemon, Melaleuca (tea tree), sage and rosemary essential oils.

Makes Breathing Easier

Essential oils are great at helping reduce inflammation and congestion in clogged airways. If you are prone to allergies or other breathing disorders, try diffusing essential oils.  We recommend using peppermint, eucalyptus and Breathe Respiratory Blend essential oils.

Pain Relief

While you can apply essential oils directly to your body for pain relief, you can also use a diffuser to extend their effects. A diffuser is a great way to help relieve head and neck tension, sore joints, and overworked muscles.

Improve Cognitive Function

Using essential oils in a diffuser is a highly-effective way to super-charge your brain cells. Again, this effect works on multiple levels. Essential oils are soothing when you’re stressed, but they can also give you a pick-me-up when you’re feeling down or sluggish.  By leveling out your mood, the oils in the air will help you to focus. We recommend trying peppermint, eucalyptus, lemon, Arborvitae, fennel, wild orange, and wintergreen

Safer Than Candles

As we have mentioned previously, burning candles or incense can be a potentially hazardous practice if you have pets or small children. With an essential oil diffuser, you can reap the benefits of aromatherapy without the risk of burns, wax spills, or other accidents.

Repel Insects

Whether your problem is mosquitoes, house flies, fruit flies or moths, you can use essential oils in your diffuser to deter these critters from entering your home.  For Mosquitoes, try Lavender or Lemongrass.  See our other post for essential oils pests dislike.

Types and Where to Buy

You’ll find diffusers large and small for your home, office, and car.  There are small, personal diffusers that run on a USB port on your computer and even smaller pendants you can wear around your neck.  You can purchase diffusers at Amazon as well the larger aromatherapy online stores.

We suggest checking out the diffusers at two of our favorite aromatherapy stores:  or  You can also find a wide assortment of diffusers at

Once you start using a personal diffuser, we think you’ll wonder how you ever lived without one!