In an earlier essay/discussion I cited some studies done with essential oils and testing them on various viruses. In those studies, in the abstracts they talked about and defined just what an essential oil is and here are those two ideas;
By definition, essential oils are a complex mixture of volatile organic compounds which are synthesized naturally in different parts of the plant as part of plants secondary metabolism. The chemical composition of the essential oils is dominated by the presence of a range of compounds including phenolics, terpenoids, aldehydes, ketones, ethers, epoxides and many others inferring that essential oils must be effective against a wide range of pathogens.
Being lipophilic in nature, essential oils can penetrate viral membranes easily leading to membrane disintegration.
There you go, for short and sweet.
End of discussion. KK