While shopping I noticed some kind of special offer - a 4-pack of "100% concentrate" essential oils for use in saunas. The pack contains oils of eucalyptus, tangerine, some sort of pine and papaya.
I am a little suspicious - the price is about right, that is, it is comparable to what quality essential oils would cost in what I think are reputable places. But the information on the packaging is lacking (not even a production date is listed from what I can tell) and it is being sold in a supermarket, after all.
It seemed like a good deal at first, but it got me wondering - do they actually make a papaya essential oil? I couldn't find any information on the internet, except that it might be a fragrance oil.
I'd appreciate your input on the matter and perhaps any tips on how to tell if the oils are synthetic or not. They all smelled nice but I had no reference with me and that is the only way I could tell, I think.
The simple answer is NO! There is no such thing as real Papaya Essential Oil or Absolute. Fruits generally do not distill an oil (except expressed citrus skins). A flavor/fragrance could be made by infusing or tincturing the fruit, but I suspect that it is a synthetic fragrance oil and not a true essential oil. That is not to say it doesn't smell wonderful, but do not be mislead. Read the label carefully. If it is being sold in a supermarket, chances are it is a perfume oil. True EOs give detailed info on its extraction method, botanical name, origin, etc. And they are not cheap. You get what you pay for.