Whether or not essential oils retain their therapeutic properties after being exposed to the heat of soapmaking is questionable. You can still smell them, but the discrete biological elements that aromatherapists credit for some of the healing properties are probably destroyed along the way.
Regardless of the therapeutic value of soaps made with essential oils, there is no disputing the beauty of the aromas. There are many blends given in the recipes in this book, and they should just be a starting place. You will want to experiment and create the perfect blend of essential oils that is yours alone.
There are many schools of thought regarding essential oils. If one aromatherapy specialist says that a certain oil does one thing, others will leap up to contradict her. The best way for anyone to learn about essential oils is through hands-on experience and the guidance of a reputable teacher.
If you want to use essential oils for aromatherapy other than in your soapmaking, there are a number of ways to do it in your home. You can use heat to diffuse essential oils through a few easy methods, such as in water over a flame or in a ceramic diffuser ring that sits on a light bulb. Massage, using a massage oil blended with essential oils, is another beneficial delivery system.