Meet Sharon Falsetto Chapman:
An aromatherapist that’s revolutionizing education
To find out more about what inspires Sharon Falsetto Chapman and to delve a little deeper into her journey with aromatherapy, we asked her a series of questions. Her answers give us a more personal glimpse into her work and life and the incredible role that essential oils play in it.
Sharon has already made a huge impact in the aromatherapy world, and she continues to educate a broad range of people on the topic. In the wake of the pandemic, she’s changed the industry for the better and is spreading awareness of the benefits of aromatherapy to people who perhaps wouldn't have discovered them otherwise.
What was your first experience with essential oils? Describe the moment when you realized this would be a big part of your life going forward.
My first experience with essential oils was through a massage in the UK, shortly after my first husband died 18 years ago. I was immediately captivated by these small bottles of healing aromas and wanted to learn more. That was when I enrolled in the Penny Price Academy of Aromatherapy.
How do you personally use essential oils today?
I use essential oils in my business day-to-day, formulating blends for clients on a custom basis. I also use essential oils personally in my skincare routine and for minor issues like stomachache, bug bites, itchy skin and pain. I suffer from fibromyalgia and find that essential oil blends can help to manage pain and skin issues associated with that.
What are things you think go well with essential oils? Yoga, meditation, dinner, drinks with friends, massage, etc?
I like to combine essential oils with herbal medicine where appropriate as I believe that the two modalities can complement each other. I also like to use essential oils in bath salts for a relaxing bath.
You’ve probably answered this question a thousand times, but what is your favorite oil? Why? What does it make you feel, or how does it help you or your clients?
My favorite essential oil varies depending on my mood and the time of year! However, neroli (Citrus aurantium var. amara (flos)) has always been a standby favorite for me. It has helped in times of shock and grief (I’ve used a bottle of it to inhale at a funeral) as it’s an uplifting aroma that can lift your spirits when you are feeling down. That intoxicating, floral-orangey aroma is almost a complex perfume in itself! However, I have found that the source of the neroli essential oil is important to retain that top-shelf quality and can affect how I feel about it.
Another important thing to note is that orange blossom is not the same as neroli. There are various extractions of this versatile flower, not forgetting that essential oil is extracted from the fruit and leaves of the orange tree as well. I think that this is why I love neroli so much as it has a whole “family” of oils standing behind it!
Neroli is also my go-to oil to inhale before presenting a class or talk, to calm my nerves and to give me confidence.
What is the most exciting thing happening in your field right now?
Since the pandemic, we have seen a rise in the number of people wanting to use aromatherapy and wanting to learn more about it, which is always a good thing! When I first moved to the United States from the UK, I often got puzzled looks when I said that I was an aromatherapist! Now the reaction is different, and most people know about aromatherapy, although educating people on what aromatherapy is (pure essential oils) and what it isn’t (for example, fragrance oils bought at Walmart) is still a challenge. Along with that is the recognition via medical professionals that aromatherapy is becoming a “valid” therapy. We still have a long way to go for it to be accepted across the board, but I think that aromatherapy’s future looks bright.
What is the biggest mistake you see people making when starting out with essential oils?
I think that I touched on this above when I mentioned understanding what aromatherapy is and what it isn’t. But to expand on that, it’s also understanding how to use essential oils safely (paramount to successful use for all). Really get to know the plant from which the essential oil was extracted as well. If you don’t fully understand what you are using, it’s difficult to use it safely and correctly. And each essential oil is different, so take your time and enjoy the learning process – we are all still learning as more is learned each day about these oils!
What tips do you have for people new to essential oils?
I think that I probably answered this question above but to add to that, get yourself a good teacher - not just one, but several. You can learn something new from each person about essential oils, and it will only expand your knowledge. However, don’t think that you can learn it all at once. Studying essential oils is a lifelong journey – but that’s what makes it so fascinating!
I have to add that I started a garden around 2016, and growing the herbs that I use in aromatherapy as essential oils is healing on many levels. I also have a still, and the hands-on process for creating essential oils is worth so much more than anything you can read about it.
Where can people find you and how do you like to connect with your audience?
You can find me on my website, on Instagram and on Facebook. You can also contact me via email at email@example.com
I also encourage people to sign up for our newsletter, as the best way to connect with our audience is through our monthly newsletters.
Anything else you'd like to share?
Thank you for allowing me to share this information with your readers! For anyone just starting out in aromatherapy, I highly recommend my book Authentic Aromatherapy, 2nd Edition (2016, New York: Skyhorse Publishing) as it covers all of the basics on what aromatherapy is and how to get started safely!
Sharing her knowledge with the world
A UK-certified aromatherapist, author and NAHA (National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy) executive board member, Sharon Falsetto Chapman has worked within the healthcare industry since the 1990s.
She’s also the founder of Sedona Aromatics: The Garden School OnlineTM and has a wealth of knowledge she’s more than happy to share with the world. Chapman strives to enrich communities and teach them about the benefits and practices of aromatherapy, even in the most challenging times.
If she’s inspired you to start your own journey with essential oils, now is the perfect time. Volant’s high quality diffusers and 100% all natural organic essential oils are an incredible introduction to what may become a lifelong passion for you too.