Absolutes are far more potent than essential oils. Absolutes, like essential oils, offer the distinct aroma of a particular plant. They find their place in holistic aromatherapy and natural fragrance applications.
Unlike essential oils, they are not steam distilled. Instead, they are solvent extracted. A solvent is first identified, which can either be a chemical or alcohol. It is then mixed with the plant material. The solvent attracts the oil from the plant, and later the two are separated. This process of extraction is complex and needs precision. Unless carefully supervised, trace amount of solvents can remain in the final aromatic absolute.