Steam Distillation

Essential oils are used in perfumes, handmade soaps, bath salts, lotions and other natural bath and body products. These volatile oils can be used individually or blended to create a special bouquet. One of the ways essential oils are extracted from plant material is through steam distillation. The following diagram provides an overview of the steam distillation process.


1. Fresh or dried botanicals are placed in the retort or still.

2. Pressurized steam is introduced into a lower chamber of the  retort and passed through the botanical ingredients to vaporize the volatile oils in the plant material.

3. The steam and oil vapor mixture is then passed through a condenser.

4. The essential oil is then extracted from the floral water or hydrolat in the separator.

Coconut Coast Handmade Soap Co.
P.O. Box 1173
Kapaa, Kauai, Hawaii 96746
Tel: (808) 822-2772

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