I often get asked about essential oil conversions and how to dilute essential oils, so I thought this would be a fitting blog post! I know how it feels to be in the midst of formulating new and exciting recipes using essential oils only to discover that I have no idea how many drops are in drams, ounces, or milliliters. This inevitably leads to a lot of funny calculations that cause a headache more than anything else. Oh, and forget converting milliliters to ounces and vice versa! We’re here to simplify things amiright?
Essential Oil Conversions and Dilutions
Once you have this simple list in tow, converting essential oils into the right measurement you’re looking for should be a breeze. I’ll also go over briefly how to dilute essential oils since I’ve already written a post on that topic.
Also, keep in mind that every essential oil is different and their drops may be larger or smaller than others depending on their viscosity (thickness). I know for a fact that trying to measure out an oil such a benzoin (a lovely vanilla smelling eo) in drops is pretty much impossible. Same goes for vetiver and other thick essential oils so keep that in mind when converting!
Essential Oil Conversions
Below I’ve listed the most common units of measure you may need for converting essential oils.
1 ml (aka .033 ounces or .27 drams) – 20 drops
3.75 ml (1/8 ounce) – 75 drops
5 ml (aka 1/6 ounce – this is the common size for small essential oil bottles) – 100 drops
7.5 ml (1/4 ounce) – 150 drops
10 ml (aka 1/3 ounce) – 200 drops
15 ml (1/2 ounce – this is the common size for medium size essential oil bottles) – 300 drops if filled to the shoulder. Some EO companies do not do this and are often 250 drops.
30 ml (1 ounce – this is the common size for large essential oil bottles) – 600 drops
1 dram – 74 drops (this is a very old unit of mass from Ancient Greece that is still used in aromatherapy today)
1/8 teaspoon – 12.5 drops
¼ teaspoon – 25 drops
½ teaspoon – 50 drops
¾ teaspoon – 75 drops
1 teaspoon (aka 1/8 ounce)– 100 drops
1 TB (aka 15ml, ½ ounce, or 3 teaspoons) – 300 drops
1 ounce (aka 30 ml or 2 TB) – 600 drops
2 ounces (aka 60 ml, 4 TB, or ¼ cup) – 1200 drops
4 ounces (aka 120 ml, 8 TB, or ½ cup) – 2400 drops
6 ounces – (aka 180 ml, 12 TB, or ¾ cup) – 3600 drops
8 ounces – (aka 240 ml, 16 TB, or 1 cup) – 4800 drops
Essential Oil Dilutions
Dilutions can be a bit tricky and really boils down to a person’s constitution, age, and whether or not they are pregnant or breast feeding. These conditions alone will determine what dilution you need. Always be sure to do your research for what you need before you begin.
1 % dilution
5 ml = 1/6oz = 100 drops – 1% of 100 is 1 drop
10 ml = 1/3oz = 200 drops – 1% of 200 is 2 drops
15 ml = 1/2oz = 300 drops – 1% of 300 is 3 drops
30 ml = 1oz = 600 drops – 1% of 600 is 6 drops
5 ml = 1/6oz = 100 drops – 2% of 100 is 2 drop
10 ml = 1/3oz = 200 drops – 2% of 200 is 4 drops
15 ml = 1/2oz = 300 drops – 2% of 300 is 6 drops
30 ml = 1oz = 600 drops – 2% of 600 is 12 drops
Take a peek at the chart below for more dilution options!
Essential Oil Dilutions for Special Situations
While the above chart is suitable for everyday needs, there are some special situations to consider before using the above dilutions.
For a healthy individual that is 10+ years in age, you can use 30 drops of essential oil in 1 ounce of carrier oil to help treat chronic pain safely.
Using essential oils via any method while taking medications should be carefully considered depending on the medication you use. It is recommended to use only half strength unless you are using therapeutic doses under the guidance of a certified aromatherapist.
Pre and Postoperative
Before surgery, the dilution of essential oils should be half strength and the physician should be informed of the oils used and their therapeutic purposes. Make sure that any oils you use have no contraindications to medicines and other therapy before surgery.
After surgery, you can use essential oils dilution at full strength one again. Make sure the oils you use do not interfere with medications and inform your physician always.
If your goal is to decrease infection postop, diffuse essential oils like oregano, cinnamon leaf, or thyme.
It is recommended to avoid using essential oils during the treatment itself but can be used at half strength between sessions to help alleviate radiation burns and soreness. Make sure the essential oils are not contraindicated and inform your physician.
Use only organic essential oils.
Prescription Drug Addiction
Use essential oils at half strength during the addiction as well as recovery. Inform your physician of the oils you wish to use.
While reducing the dosage of prescription medications, use essential oils that have a calming effect on the nervous system.
Follow the general guidelines for essential oils dilution to help ease specific withdrawal symptoms.
Essential oils that have anti-anxiety and stress relieving properties may be beneficial while reducing the use of any substance.
During times of excess alcohol abuse, essential oils should be used at half strength. Essential oils that have an affinity for the digestive and nervous systems may be especially beneficial at this time. Well diluted liver toning essential oils may help with alcohol detox.
During the various stages of terminal illness, essential oils dilutions should be adjusted depending on the medicines being given. Diffusing essential oils during this type is helpful and should be relevant to the symptoms they are experiencing.
Room fragrances can be very comforting at this time for both the terminally ill and the family and friends taking care of them.
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I hope you are able to respond: I was hoping you have a printable version available? (Or, how do I print a Pinterest recipe?).
Jann Simpson says
I’m sorry, I’m still confused. Your Post says:
1 % dilution
5 ml = 1/6oz = 100 drops – 1% of 100 is 1 drop. Does this mean 1 drop of carrier oil per 100 drops of essential oil?
If I’m not putting enough carrier oil and it’s not irritating my skin, is it ok? or can too much of a good thing be bad?
I’m also confused about the measurements and ratio of carrier oil to EO. I intended to add 20 drops of EO to 2 oz of jojoba oil. I mistakenly added 40 drops of EO. In attempting to salvage the ingredients, I added another oz of jojoba oil and 5 drops of vitamin E oil to dilute the mixture. I want to make sure I do not develop a sensitivity. Should this be ok or do I need to dilute the mixture more. Your advise will be very much appreciated.
Thank you very much informative inspiring ??❤️ planning on making my own psoriasis balm and some online recipes are too conservative in the amount of EO’s
Heyy I wanted to ask here for some advice! I want to make an oil for my hair and plan to use jojoba oil should i ad another oil or is only jojoba okay? Also I want to put some eos in it but dont know what dilution to use as I am. using it for my itchy scalp and I have dreads. I plan to use tea tree, eucalyptus, lemon, lavender and peppermint.
I’ve seen the reccomended dillution of 20% for perfume making including with essential oils. I’ve also seen some sites which sell essential oils and caution recommended dilution of 1-5% sell perfumes with 20% essential oil. I’m confused- if it’s not safe to use a 20% dilution therapeutically, why would it be alright to use it for perfume?
Adamu Abdullahi says
hi, good day.
my question is how many kg of ginger will give 300ml of essential oils
Please can you tell me what to add to the beeswax, carrier oil and essential oils to make the fragrance last longer? I think I have the quantities right:
1 T beeswax
1 T sweet almond oil
10 drops ea base note (patchouli), middle note (geranium) and top note (lavender).
Hmmm, the only thing I can think of is to perhaps incorporate a fixative essential oil like Amyris, angelica root, balsam of Peru, cedarwood, cistus, clary sage, frankincense, sandalwood, vanilla, etc. Patchouli is actually a fixative essential oil and should help with the longevity of your blend 🙂
Thank you so much for this great post, you clearly know your stuff! Is it possible to ask for a bit of help? I’m creating a hair oil (100ml) using 5 carrier oils and 5 Eos (2% dilution). How many ml of essential oil can I use altogether in my blend? I am trying to work with weight rather than drops.
Hope that makes sense and thank you in advance for your help.
Let’s see, I believe that for a 2% dilution in 100ml of carrier oil you would need roughly 40 drops of essential oil. What you can do is actually weight those drops and see what that comes out to. 20 drops of essential oil weights about 1g so I’m assuming you would use 2g of essential oil. HOWEVER, essential oils rarely come out of the bottle in the same size drops and some essential oils are heavier than others.
Penny Schulze says
You mentioned liver toning EOs for alcoholics…I don’t drink but do have a fatty liver. What particular EOs do you recommend and how to use, please? I really appreciate the research, time, and study that you put into all your articles and blogs. I look forward to all your e-mails. Thanks you for all your efforts.
Thank you so much for your lovely comment 🙂
As for a fatty liver, you can use Ginger CO2 diluted in carrier over (perhaps start with just 2-3 drops per 1 oz of carrier oil to see how that feels for you) and apply it over the liver 1-2x daily. Additionally, avoid as many processed foods and drink as possible.
Hi, I am wondering if when making a sugar scrub, using coconut oil, is 20 drops of EO to 1 and 1/2 of the coconut oil a safe dilution?
If you mean 1.5 CUPS of coconut oil, then yes! But it also depends which essential oil you are using. I recommend reading this article to check the max dilution of the essential oil you want to use 🙂
Hello! I can’t figure out how many drops to add if you use multiple essential oils in one roller. I want to make a perfume for a friend. Any help is greatly appreciated! Thanks!
You would make a master blend first – meaning you would mix just pure essential oils in a separate bottle to achieve the scent you’re looking for. You would then add drops from that blend to the roller 🙂
Eloretta Wedderburn says
Thanks so very much. Takes the trouble out of blending the oils! Blessings more on you.
You’re welcome, Eloretta! 🙂
OMG! Thank you f ir this conversion information. I have been having terruble anxiety trying to add up drops, teaspoons, tablespoons & cups. I am new to using essenti oils and this is such a relief to find. Thank you so much.
You’re welcome, Rebecca! 🙂 Let me know if you have questions!
Tracy D Cummins says
Hi! Thank you for creating this blog. Conversion has become an issue for me and I am realizing that I am very likely losing a lot of the benefits that I need by not understanding how much I should use.
I have an autoimmune disease (actually several) and have a very bad eczema, atopic dermatitis as well as psoriasis. I have what feels like bad burns that won’t heal. I am treating this by using coconut oil as the carrier, frankensense, lavendar, tea tree and rose geranium for healing and relief from pain and itch.
Is it possible for you to advise me on how much to use? I believe I am using way too little. I use a 2oz bottle and use 20 drops of each eo except for the tea tree which I1 use 25. Reading above I get the sense that I should be using more like 60 drops of each. Is this correct?
Any advice I can get would be very appreciated. I have been trying to deal with this for 12 years. I finally left the doctors after they failed at every treatment (immune suppressant drug) they tried. I continued to get worse and worse. When I told them I was trying tea tree oil they got furious and tried to fire someone who was there telling them they were fired. Apparently they did not like the idea of losing their kickback.
I digress…as I said, any help would be extremely appreciated. I am all alone here.
So sorry to hear about your experience! If you are using frankincense, lavender, geranium, and tea tree, you actually will only need 9 drops of each oil in 2 oz to make a therapeutic 3% dilution. You can even use less. 60 drops of each will be far too strong and can actually burn your skin even more, so be careful!
Hi Tracy, I saw your post and was compelled to reply as well. My granddaughter suffer for several years with eczema with no relief from MD. There’s a UTUBE video by naturopathic doctor who helped us get rid of it. Finally. Search “Eczema by Dr Wallach” on UTUBE and listen to him. Its really a simple solution. I hope you find the relief we found.