All About HEALTH > ESSENTIAL OILS
Essential Oil Uses & Benefits
Best Essential Oils and Their Benefits
by Dr. Edward Group DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM
November 17, 2016
Essential oils, also called volatile oils, are scented oils extracted from plants. Historically, they’ve been used in medicine, cosmetics, perfumes, food, and, more recently, aromatherapy. Essential oils are “essential” because they contain the “essence” of the plant, meaning the taste or odor.
Not only are essential oils popular, they have legitimate therapeutic use and the science to back it up. Although the exact benefit depends on the oil in question, some have antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory effects. Others can affect cognitive function, mood, and memory. Some can even help alleviate stiff, sore muscles and joints.
Some essential oils can be applied to the skin, others are best taken orally. However–and this is important–do not ingest or topically apply any essential oils unless you are absolutely certain that they can be used this way. Not all essential oils are safe to take internally and some can irritate the skin. Essential oils are a concentrated source of many phytochemicals and some essential oils must be diluted with an unscented “carrier oil” to be used safely on skin.
Health Benefits of Common Oils
One of the primary benefits of essential oils is that, when used properly, they offer many benefits and have few, if any, side effects. Many essential oils are effective against harmful organisms. Some can positively affect your mood and mental state. Some essential oils can even help you reduce a headache or feelings of nausea. Aromatherapy uses essential oils to improve quality of life and reduce unpleasant side effects of aggressive therapies and health conditions. Just be careful not to spill them; some surfaces, like painted wood, may react with essential oils.
Derived from fresh lavender flowers, lavender oil is one of the most well known essential oils. It appears to slow the activity of the central nervous system, improve sleep quality, promote better concentration, and help encourage hair regrowth in those suffering from alopecia areata, a type of hair loss.
Lavender may also help fight anxiety. In one study, encapsulated lavender oil was found to be effective for generalized anxiety disorder, without sedative effects or potential for abuse.
Eucalyptus oil, derived from the leaves of Eucalyptus odorata, a smaller variety of eucalyptus tree, is a powerful biocide. It’s antimicrobial, insecticidal (kills insects), herbicidal, acaricidal (kills ticks and mites), and nematicidal (kills nematodes). It’s especially effective against the bacterial strains Staphylococcus aureus, Haemophilus influenza, Staphylococcus agalactiae, and Streptococcus pneumoniae.
Eucalyptus oil is great for respiratory health. Inhaling eucalyptus steam can help alleviate a cough and congestion. The aroma of the oil acts as an expectorant, helping to loosen phlegm in the nasal passages and lungs.
In one study, researchers found that the combination of eucalyptus oil and peppermint oil boosts cognitive performance. The same study also found the scent of these two essential oils reduce headaches and promote mental and muscular relaxation.
Peppermint oil can help alleviate nausea, headache, upset stomach, gas, indigestion, and anxiety. It works on the digestive system by speeding up the rate of elimination. Peppermint oil calms the involuntary smooth muscle of the stomach, producing an antispasmodic effect, and improves the flow of bile. It can help soothe discomfort associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and studies have shown that encapsulated peppermint oil can reduce IBS symptoms in as many as 80% of people who take it. Peppermint oil is effective because it contains menthol that interferes with the movement of electrolytes across cell membranes, stopping involuntary contractions.
Beyond digestive help, peppermint oil may offer relief for HSV-1 (Herpes simplex) outbreaks by permeating the skin and acting as a virucide directly on the virus. More research is needed, but preliminary results suggest topical application may fight outbreaks.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is another essential oil with strong antimicrobial properties. Also known as melaleuca oil, tea tree oil comes from “tea” or “paperbark” trees. In Australia, it has a long history of use as an antiseptic. Bundjalung aborigines native to Australia inhaled the aroma of crushed leaves to relieve cough and used poultices to help heal wounds.
Today, we know that tea tree oil is antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antiprotozoal. It fights harmful organisms by damaging cell membranes. Tea tree oil also inhibits the growth and sporulation of yeast and fungus. The oil can be applied topically to cuts to discourage infection.
Like peppermint oil, tea tree oil seems to have an effect on HSV-1. One study revealed that, while topical tea tree oil doesn’t prevent recurrent herpes outbreaks, it may reduce viral load by up to 98.2%.
Jojoba oil is derived from the seeds of the wild jojoba shrub, a small, woody desert plant native to Arizona, California, and northwestern Mexico. Historically, Native Americans used jojoba oil to help wounds heal. Jojoba oil contains unique fatty acids and fatty alcohol esters that are similar, but superior, to those found in sperm whales.
Unlike other essential oils, jojoba oil is not a volatile oil, but still offers plenty of benefits, primarily to the skin. With respect to wound healing, researchers found that jojoba oil accelerates the closure of wounds at a cellular level. To improve skin appearance and reduce acne, incorporate jojoba oil into your skincare routine. Evidence indicates that clay-jojoba oil facial masks might be an effective remedy for mild acne.
Blue Chamomile Oil
Blue chamomile oil is extracted from German chamomile. The vibrant color of blue chamomile oil is a result of the steam extraction process—the azulene content in the oil darkens to an inky blue, brilliant azure, or deep green. This color fades and turns dark yellow during storage, but, don’t worry, the oil’s benefits don’t fade.
Chamomile has been used therapeutically for thousands of years by Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians to remedy everything from skin conditions and injuries to fever and insomnia. As a traditional medicine, blue chamomile oil may help with eczema, wounds, bruises, burns, canker sores, mastitis, and other conditions.
Chamomile is also appreciated for its anti-inflammatory effects. One study found that chamomile inhibits and prevents a chemical process in the body that incites inflammation. Further, chamomile seems to inhibit the effects of the stomach-ulcer-provoking bacteria Helicobacter pylori.
Chamomile tea can help with insomnia, and inhaling the aroma of chamomile oil produces a mild sedative effect on the brain, which makes you feel sleepy. Like lavender, chamomile oil offers a mild anti-anxiety effect for those who suffer from generalized anxiety disorder.
Rose oil is a floral-scented essential oil derived from the petals of several species of rose. In contrast, rose absolute is not an essential oil because the essence of the rose is extracted using a more intense chemical extraction processes. Like other essential oils, rose oil promotes a calm mood and fights harmful organisms. It contains tocopherol (a vitamin E compound), carotene, and high levels of phenolic compounds. Rose oil can make your skin more permeable so it’s often added to skin care products to improve efficacy.
Oregano oil contains carvacrol, a powerful organic compound with a long list of beneficial properties, including fighting harmful organisms. Carvacrol also supports liver health.
Jasmine oil is derived from jasmine flowers. While many of the essential oils mentioned are sleep aids and relaxants, jasmine oil has a stimulating effect. When applied topically, jasmine oil increases alertness, breathing rate, and vigor. These effects may promote an uplifted mood and better sense of well-being.
Copaiba oil is extracted from the Amazonian plants in the Copaifera genus. Copaiba oil contains copalic acid, which seems to halt the growth of common, but harmful, dental bacteria such as Streptococcus pyogenus, Streptococcus salivarius, and Streptococcus mutagens. Copaiba oil also has strong anti-inflammatory effects. Unlike most essential oils, copaiba oil can be taken orally.
Bergamot oil is known for its calming effects, but it may also encourage a healthy body weight and help with vascular and heart health. Researchers aren’t yet sure how, but bergamot oil encourages normal cholesterol levels and blood sugar.
Neroli oil is derived from the blossom of Citrus aurantium, also known as the bitter orange tree, which is native to tropical and subtropical Asia. The oil goes by many names but is frequently called “orange bitters” and “Seville orange.” It’s known as Neroli because a 17th-century Italian princess, Anne Marie Orsini of Nerola, took a liking to the scent. Neroli oil is commonly added to diet pills due to it’s ability to act as an appetite suppressant. One of the major benefits of Neroli oil is that it helps relieve symptoms associated with menopause and stress. It also boosts the actions of the endocrine system, fights harmful organisms, and soothes irritation.
Lemon Balm Oil
Also called valerian, lemon balm is another essential oil that helps with symptoms of menopause, especially disordered sleep patterns. Lemon balm also seems to sharpen memory and boost problem-solving abilities. Some promising research indicates that it may improve recall for people with Alzheimer’s disease.
Pomegranate oil comes from the many seeds of the pomegranate. It’s exceptionally rich in linolenic acid, an essential fatty acid. Some research suggests pomegranate oil may even delay the development of colon cancer and skin cancer. The oil also enhances the immune system.
Frankincense oil is extracted from Boswellia tree sap and has a long history of therapeutic use. Most interestingly, frankincense promotes normal cell growth.
How to Use Essential Oils
Most essential oils are safe to use, but you have to pay attention to their intended use and stick to those applications. Some oils can only be used aromatically and should not be applied to the skin or taken orally. You may have noticed that many of the oils are effective against harmful organisms. Those effects aren’t always limited to harmful organisms—they might affect gut and skin microbiota, too. Others can kill cells indiscriminately, including normal tissue cells.
There are, of course, gentle essential oils that are great for the skin. Neroli oil, for example, promotes circulation and soothes irritation. Rose oil moisturizes the skin and is used as a gentle toner. To take advantage of some of the skin benefits of essential oils, AquaSpirit® contains Neroli, rose, jasmine, and lavender oil. It encourages healthy-looking, radiant skin and promotes well-being.
Source : https://draxe.com/essential-oil-uses-benefits/
101 Essential Oil Uses & Benefits
Essential oils have been used for thousands of years in various cultures for medicinal and health purposes. Because of their antidepressant, stimulating, detoxifying, antibacterial, antiviral and calming properties, essential oils are recently gaining popularity as a natural, safe and cost-effective therapy for a number of health concerns.
There’s no wonder why, considering the high cost of healthcare bills and the side effects of conventional medications, adding essential oils to your personal medicine cabinet can make a world of difference. This is especially true because essential oils benefits are vast and their uses range from aromatherapy, household cleaning products, personal beauty care and natural medicine treatments.
The particles in essential oils come from distilling or extracting the different parts of plants, including the flowers, leaves, bark, roots, resin and peels. In fact, just one drop of an essential oil can have powerful health benefits. Typically created through the process of distillation — which separates the oil and water-based compounds of a plant by steaming — essential oils are highly concentrated oils that have a strong aroma. In fact, sometimes they are called volatile aromatic oils because of their high concentration of the aromatic compounds. (1)
By concentrating the oils of these plants, you are literally separating the most powerful healing compounds of a plant into a single oil.
So, are you ready to harness the power of the world’s most proven therapeutic compounds? Are you ready to learn which oils to use in your essential oil diffuser or in other ways? Explore the many essential oils benefits and uses, and open your mind to a whole new way of preventing and reversing health conditions that you’ve been battling for years.
11 Essential Oil Benefits
1. Balance Hormones
There are essential oils for hormones that can help to balance your estrogen, progesterone, cortisol, thyroid and testosterone levels.
Some oils, like clary sage, geranium and thyme, help to balance out estrogen and progesterone levels in your body, which can improve conditions like infertility and PCOS, as well as PMS and menopause symptoms. A 2017 published in Neuro Endocrinology Letters indicates that some essential oils, notably geranium and rose, have the ability to influence the salivary concentration of estrogen in women. This may be helpful for women who are experiencing menopausal symptoms that are caused by declining levels of estrogen secretion. (2)
Essential oils are also able to lower cortisol levels, which can help to improve your mood and reduce symptoms of depression, and increase testosterone levels, which can improve a man’s libido. (3)
2. Boost Immunity & Fight Infections
Many essential oils have anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antiseptic and anti-fungal properties that help to boost your immune system and fight infections. The chemical substances found in essential oils, such as terpenes, esters, phenolics, ethers and ketones, have the potential to fight foreign pathogens that can threaten your health. Some of the best essential oils for your immunity include oregano, myrrh, ginger, lemon, eucalyptus, frankincense, peppermint (or Mentha piperita) and cinnamon.
Studies have shown that essential oils effectively destroy several fungal, viral and bacterial pathogens, including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Helicobacter pylori and Candida albicans infections. Because antibiotic resistance is becoming such a major threat in modern health care, using essential oils as a form of independent or combination therapy can help to fight bacterial infections in a safer and more natural way. (4, 5)
Oregano oil, for instance, has powerful immune-boosting properties and has displayed both antiviral and antibacterial properties in lab studies. Oregano oil contains carvacrol and thymol, two compounds that have antimicrobial effects and can inhibit the synthesis and growth of several types of bacteria. (6)
3. Support Digestion
Another well-researched essential oils benefit is their role in aiding and improving digestion. Some oils help to relieve upset stomach, indigestion, diarrhea, stomach spasms and even conditions of the gastrointestinal system, like IBS. Essential oils can also aid your digestion by helping to stimulate digestive enzymes that make it easier to break down and absorb the nutrients, fats and protein that you need.
Ginger essential oil, for example, is known to promote your digestive health by easing indigestion, constipation and ulcers. A study published in the World Journal of Gastroenterology found that ginger oil stimulated gastric emptying in people with indigestion. Ginger oil is also used to relieve gas, reduce nausea and ease abdominal pain. (7)
Another useful essential oil for digestion is peppermint. Research shows that peppermint oil works to provide rapid relief of IBS symptoms. In a 4-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial, 72 patients with IBS received either peppermint oil or placebo. The peppermint group experienced a 40 percent reduction in total IBS symptoms after 4 weeks, which was superior to the 24 percent decrease of symptoms reported by the patients in the placebo group. After just 24 hours of using peppermint oil, the treatment group experienced a decrease in symptoms of 19.6 percent. (8)
Some other essential oils that are helpful for digestion include fennel, lemongrass, marjoram, black pepper and juniper berry.
4. Boost Energy Levels
Did you know that essential oils can help to boost your energy levels and even improve your athletic performance? Some oils have stimulating effects and can actually increase oxygen to your brain, which will leave you feeling refreshed, focused and energized.
A study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that peppermint oil increased brain oxygen concentration, improved exercise performance and reduced exhaustion in healthy male athletes who consumed peppermint oil with water for 10 days. (9)
Some other great essential oils for energy include grapefruit, lemon, lemongrass, eucalyptus and rosemary.
5. Improve Brain Function
Essential oils have neuroprotective effects and can help to improve cognitive performance. This is one of the most impressive essential oil benefits and it has helped many people who are suffering from neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia. In a scientific review published in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, researchers found that because essential oils possess powerful antioxidants that work to inhibit free radical scavenging, they help to naturally improve brain function and reduce inflammation.
Essential oils have also shown to improve learning, memory and ability to focus. Both stimulating and sedative essential oils can be useful, as oils like peppermint can improve sustained attention over a longer period of time, while oils like lavender can be useful for people going through tough exercises or situations. Furthermore, essential oils can be useful in relieving agitation in individuals with dementia. This is due to their calming and sedative effects. (10)
6. Reduce Emotional Stress & Anxiety
Perhaps one of the most well-known essential oils benefits is their ability to reduce stress and anxiety. Some essential oils have sedative properties and induce a calm, peaceful, uplifting and relaxed feeling. The best essential oils for anxiety and stress include lavender, Roman chamomile, bergamot, ylang ylang, orange, rose, frankincense and vetiver.
A 2016 randomized controlled clinical trial found that inhaling rose water for four weeks significantly decreased the state and traits of anxiety in patients undergoing hemodialysis treatment. (11)
A pilot study published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice found that the use of aromatherapy as a complementary therapy helped to reduce anxiety and depression scales in postpartum women. Women between zero and 18 months postpartum were divided into either a treatment group that inhaled a blend of rose and lavender essential oils or a control group that didn’t receive any type of aromatherapy. After four weeks, the women using aromatherapy had significant improvements in anxiety and depression symptoms compared to those in the control group. (12)
And a 2014 study involving 82 participants evaluated the effectiveness of aromatherapy for elderly people with chronic pain and symptoms of anxiety and depression. Researchers found that after four weeks of treatment with essential oils, there was a significant reduction in negative emotions, including feelings of anxiety, stress and depression, among the intervention group. (13)
These are just some of the studies that have displayed the anti-anxiety and stress-relieving capabilities of essential oils.
7. Alleviate Aches and Pains
According to a systemic review and meta-analysis published in Pain Research and Treatment, there is a significant positive effect of aromatherapy, compared to placebos or control treatments, in reducing pain. Researchers evaluated 12 studies on this topic and found that essential oils were especially helpful in treating postoperative pain, obstetrical pain and gynecological pain. (14)
There are many essential oils that can be applied topically or used aromatically to reduce body aches and pains. One study that displays this essential oil benefit evaluated the efficacy of essential oils on neck pain. For the study, the experimental group received a cream that was composed of marjoram, black pepper, lavender and peppermint essential oils, and the control group used an unscented cream. The creams were applied for 4 weeks, directly to the painful area after bathing. Researchers found that the experimental group had improved pain tolerance in the neck and showed significant improvement in the 10 motion areas that were measured. (15)
The best essential oils for alleviating aches and pains include lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, chamomile, rosemary, majoram, thyme, frankincense, turmeric, ginger and myrrh.
8. Boost Skin and Hair Health
Using essential oils in your skin, hair and beauty products is a natural and effective way to keep up your personal care regimes without having to use products that are made with chemicals and hydrogenated oils. Essential oils can calm irritated skin, reduce signs of aging, like age spots, improve acne, protect your skin from sun damage and thicken your hair.
According to a review published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, “at least 90 essential oils can be identified as being recommended for dermatological use, with at least 1,500 combinations.” What gives essential oils their skin benefits is their ability to fight against pathogens that are responsible for dermatological infections. Essential oils can also help to improve inflammatory skin conditions, like dermatitis, eczema and lupus, improve the general appearance of your skin and even aid wound healing. (16)
There are also quite a few studies that have found essential oils to be helpful for hair growth. One such study, conducted in 2015, evaluated the efficacy of rosemary oil on patients with androgenetic alopecia, or male or female pattern baldness. Patients were randomly assigned to rosemary oil or minoxidil (a medication commonly used for hair loss) for a six-month treatment period. Researchers found that both groups experienced a significant increase in hair count at the six-month endpoint. They also indicated that scalp itching was more frequent in the minoxidil group. (17)
The best essential oils for skin and hair health include lavender, Roman chamomile, frankincense, tea tree, geranium, myrrh, helichrysum, rosemary and clary sage.
9. Reduce Toxicity
Essential oils help to reduce toxicity by promoting the detoxification of your home and body. These days, we are all inhaling and ingesting a number of chemicals and environmental toxins that can be dangerous for our health. Some essential oils work as mild diuretics, thereby increasing urine production and improving detoxification. And some oils aid digestion, which also promotes the detoxification of toxins that buildup in the body. (18)
Oils that help to promote internal detoxification include lemon, grapefruit, parsley, funnel, lemongrass, peppermint and ginger.
Using detoxifying essential oils can help your body to flush out these toxins and it can clean the air of your home, too. In fact, unlike most home cleaning products that are loaded with chemicals, essential oils can naturally clean your home by destroying harmful pathogens and pollutants.
The best essential oils for reducing toxicity in your home or place of work include grapefruit, orange, lemon, lemongrass, eucalyptus, cinnamon, peppermint and tea tree.
10. Relieve Headaches and Migraines
Essential oils work as natural headache and migraine relievers because they effectively treat the trigger, addressing the root of the problem instead of masking it, like painkillers do. Essential oils for headaches provide pain relief, improve circulation and reduce stress, which can be a major cause of both headaches and migraines.
A placebo-controlled clinical trial conducted in 2012 evaluated the efficacy of inhaling lavender oil for the treatment of migraine headaches. Forty-seven patients with migraines were divided into two groups — one that inhaled lavender oil for 15 minutes and one that used a color and odorless liquid.
After asking the patients to record their headache severity and associated symptoms every 30 minutes for a total of 2 hours, researchers found that the difference between the controls and treated patients was statistically significant. From 129 headache attacks in the treatment group, 92 responded entirely or partially to lavender. In the control group, 32 out of 68 headache attacks responded to the placebo. (19)
Aside from lavender, some other oils that can help to relieve headache pain include peppermint, which has a cooling effect and stimulates blood flow, eucalyptus, which relieves sinus pressure by opening the nasal airways, and rosemary, which reduces inflammation, promotes circulation and has a calming effect.
11. Promote Restful Sleep
Some essential oils have sedative properties, which can be helpful for people who are having trouble falling asleep or sleeping through the night. Lavender oil, in particular, is known to be an effective sleep aid because of its ability to leave you feeling relaxed and calm. Some other oils that can be used to promote restful sleep include Roman chamomile, ylang ylang, bergamot and vetiver.
A 2014 systematic review conducted at the University of Minnesota evaluated 15 quantitative studies, including 11 randomized controlled trials that examined the effects of essential oils on sleep. Researchers found that a majority of the study findings suggest a positive effect of essential oils on sleep deprivation and disturbances. Lavender oil was the most frequently studied oil and of all evaluated studies, no adverse events were reported. (20)
Another recent study, this one published in Nursing in Critical Care, investigated the effects of lavender oil on sleep quality among patients in the coronary intensive care unit (ICU). Sixty patients participated in the study and they were divided into the intervention group or the control group.
The intervention group inhaled lavender oil for 15 days and researchers found that they showed significantly significant differences in their sleep quality compared to the control group that received no form of therapy. Researchers pointed out that lavender oil is a non-invasive, inexpensive and easily applicable intervention for hospital patients who are having trouble sleeping and experiencing anxiety. (21)
101 Essential Oil Uses for Health, Beauty, Home + More
Here are the many essential oil uses for your body (including oral, hair and skin care), general health (such as for allergies, digestion and sleep), the home (DIY all-purpose cleaner, mold killer, etc.) and recipes (including healthy sweets!).
Some call for carrier oils, all of which can be read about on our site. These include:
sea buckthorn oil
Acne face wash: To get rid of acne, make a homemade face wash by mixing tea tree oil (melaleuca) with raw honey and rub on your face. Then rinse off with water.
Age spot reducer: Put on frankincense essential oil three times daily directly on skin to improve sun spots and age spots.
Blistered skin healer: Mix two drops of tea tree oil with two drops of unscented oil and apply to the blistered area up to five times per day.
Body butter: Mix coconut oil, shea butter, magnesium oil and essential oils for moisturizing body lotion.
Body spray: Add 5–10 drops to four ounces of water and use as a fragrant body spray.
Breath freshener: Use a drop of peppermint essential oil (or Mentha piperita) for a natural way to freshen breath.
Bruise healer: Use essential oils as a hot compress to treat bruises or other wounds. Add five drops of lavender oil and five drops of frankincense oil to four ounces of hot water and soak. Apply to affected area.
Bug bite soother: Use lavender oil for bug bites and stings.
Burn healer: Mix lavender essential oil with aloe vera to treat burns.
Cellulite reducer: Mix five drops of grapefruit seed essential oil with 2 teaspoons of coconut oil and massage into dimpled areas.
Dandruff remover: Mix five drops of rosemary and lavender essential oils with three tablespoons of an unscented carrier oil such as jojoba oil. Massage into your scalp and leave on for 10 minutes. Shampoo mixture out.
Deodorant for women: Combine coconut oil, beeswax and your favorite essential oils like cedarwood and clove oil for men and lavender and tea tree oil for women.
Deodorant for men: Combine coconut oil, beeswax and your favorite essential oils like cedarwood and clove oil for men and lavender and tea tree oil for women.
Detox bath: Mix lavender oil, Epsom salts and sea salt to a warm bath to cleanse and rejuvenate the body.
Dry, cracked feet soother: Add three drops of lavender oil to two tablespoons of coconut oil. Apply to the feet at night and put on some socks.
Eczema/psoriasis cream: To treat eczema, psoriasis or red dry skin, apply a mixture of lavender essential oil with shea butter.
Facial scrub: Mix one-fourth cup yogurt, one-fourth cup cornmeal, and five drops of lavender, grapefruit and patchouli oils. Apply to face and wash off.
Facial sugar scrub: Mix a few drops of an essential oil with almond oil and rock salt or sugar to make your own salt or sugar scrub.
Foot bath: Add a few drops of lemon or eucalyptus oils to a large bowl of warm water to help soothe the feet.
Hair conditioner: Mix 15 drops of rosewood oil with five drops of sandalwood and lavender essential oils into unscented oil. Place mixture in a small plastic bag and dunk into warm water to heat up. Apply to hair and wrap for 20 minutes. Shampoo as usual.
Hair thickener: Add rosemary oil to shampoo to naturally thicken hair and increase volume.
Itchy scalp helper: Add lavender, cedarwood or basil essential oil to shampoo to reduce itching.
Lip balm: Combine coconut oil, beeswax and lavender oil for an amazing healing balm for chapped lips.
Nail strengthener: Mix 10 drops of frankincense, myrrh and lemon essential oils into two tablespoons of vitamin E oil, then rub on cuticles.
Oily hair reducer: Mix 10 drops each of ylang ylang, lime and rosemary essential oils with two ounces of an unscented carrier oil. Massage it scalp 2–3 times per week. Wash out as usual.
Perfume: Use 1–2 drops of jasmine essential oil on your wrist as a fresh natural fragrance. Lavender and vanilla oils also agree with most women, while cypress and clove oils work well for men’s cologne.
Sauna therapy: Add two drops of your favorite essential oil into two cups of water in a sauna.
Shampoo: To make homemade shampoo, mix lavender oil, rosemary oil, aloe vera gel and coconut milk. Use as you would regular shampoo. It lasts 2–4 weeks.
Skin toner: Mix eight ounces of water with two drops of lavender, geranium and frankincense oils.
Sore feet reliever: Add 10 drops of peppermint oil with a tablespoon of Epsom salt and add to a warm-water foot bath.
Stretch mark reducer: Mix five drops of frankincense, myrrh and grapefruit seed essential oils with coconut oil and apply to stretch marks.
Sunburn soother: Combine lavender or chamomile oil with one tablespoon of coconut oil and apply to the skin with a cotton ball to reduce swelling and pain.
Sunscreen: Mix coconut oil, zinc oxide, shea butter, helichrysum oil and lavender essential oil, then store in a squeeze bottle to make homemade toxic-free sunscreen.
Teeth whitener: Combine lemon essential oil, coconut oil and fresh strawberries, then rub on your teeth. Rinse after two minutes.
Toothpaste: Combine sea salt, baking soda, coconut oil and xylitol with peppermint essential oil to make homemade remineralizing toothpaste. Then brush.
Wrinkle reducer: Mix 3–5 drops of sandalwood, geranium, lavender and frankincense essential oils with an unscented lotion and apply to face. Avoid applying to eyes.
Achy muscle rub: Mix eucalyptus, wintergreen and cypress oils with an unscented lotion or coconut oil and apply to muscles.
Allergy fighter: Rub frankincense and lavender essential oils on your palms and inhale deeply to relieve itchy eyes and throat.
Anxiety reducer: Diffuse lavender essential oil around your home to reduce feelings of stress and tension.
Arthritis reliever: Mix two drops of wintergreen, cypress and lemongrass oils into an unscented lotion. Massage into affected areas.
Asthma remedy: Make a homemade vapor rub by combining eucalyptus, peppermint and coconut oil. Rub on your chest and neck.
Back/neck pain reducer: Combine peppermint, cypress and ginger oils with cayenne pepper and coconut oil for a homemade muscle rub.
Broken bones helper: To support the healing of broken bones, apply helichrysum, fir and cypress essential oils.
Circulation improver: Add 8–10 drops of grapefruit essential oil to warm bath water.
Cold reliever: Take three drops of oil of oregano and frankincense oils three daily for one week.
Concentration helper: Inhale bergamot, peppermint or grapefruit seed essential oils to increase concentration during the day.
Cough reducer: Eucalyptus essential oil is known for its powerful ability to fight coughs and open airways. Add a few drops into steaming hot water or diffuser. Inhale to help clear nasal passage.
Depression reliever: To boost mood and relieve depression, add rose essential oil to baths, inhalations and diffusers to improve mood.
Digestion helper: Take ginger, peppermint and fennel essential oils to support digestion and healing leaky gut.
Fever reducer: Add 1–3 drops of eucalyptus, peppermint and lavender essential oils to a cool cloth and sponge the body.
Food cravings curber: Inhale peppermint and cinnamon essential oils to reduce your appetite and balance blood sugar.
Hangover reliever: Add six drops each of juniper berry, cedarwood, grapefruit, lavender, rosemary and lemon oil into a warm bath.
Head lice remedy: Mix three drops of thyme, lavender and eucalyptus oils with unscented oil and apply to scalp. Cover head with a shower cap and leave on for 30 minutes. Shampoo out.
Immune system booster: Mix one drop of oregano oil with four drops of carrier oil and rub on the bottom of your feet before flying on a plane.
Love potion: For a cute bridal shower gift or for you and your partner, create a “love potion” with essential oils. Add 20 drops of sandalwood essential oil, and four drops of cocoa, vanilla and rose oil to unscented lotion.
Massage therapy: Use a few drops of cedarwood or lavender oil, mixed with an unscented lotion during a relaxation massage.
Migraine/headache reliever: Try combining a few drops of lavender oil and peppermint oil and apply to temples to help with headaches and migraines.
Morning sickness reducer: Add a few drops of wild orange, lemon or ginger oil to a handkerchief and inhale.
Motion sickness reliever: Use peppermint, lavender and ginger essential oils to reduce motion sickness.
Nausea reliever: Breathe in peppermint oil through your nose to get rid of nausea, and also apply to your neck and upper chest. Ginger and lavender may also help.
PMS reliever: Mix two drops of sage, basil and rosemary oils, then apply to a warm, moist hand towel and apply to abdomen.
Poison ivy/poison oak remedy: Mix three drops of peppermint oil with unscented oil and apply to affected area.
Relaxation mixture: Apply 2–4 drops of chamomile, lavender and peppermint essential oil to your temples for a cooling effect and immediate relaxation.
Ringworm remedy: Combine three drops of tea tree oil with coconut oil and massage over the affected area twice a day.
Sleep aid: Lavender oil can alleviate insomnia. Sprinkle a few drops on your pillow to help you fall asleep.
Spiritual enlightenment: Diffuse frankincense essential oil while praying, meditating or reading to increase spiritual awareness.
Teeth grinding stopper: Massage 1–3 drops of lavender on the bottom of the feet and behind ears before bed.
Tension reliever: Help to relieve anxiety by using a single drop of lavender oil on your hands, rub together, and cup your hands to your nose and let the smell flood your senses.
Upset child smoother: Help soothe and calm children by adding lavender or chamomile essential oils to their stuffed animals.
Weight loss: Combine grapefruit, ginger and cinnamon oil and take as a supplement three times daily to support metabolism.
Workout energizer: Inhale peppermint oil before a workout to reduce fatigue.
Yoga and Pilates: To relax during yoga or meditation, inhale lavender or sandalwood before class. Also, mix clove and citrus essential oil to clean yoga mats.
Air cleaner: Diffuse cinnamon essential oil in the air and enjoy its anti-microbial properties.
Air detoxifier when painting: Add peppermint and eucalyptus oil to a gallon of paint to dispel fumes.
All-purpose cleaner: Add three drops each of lemon essential oil and tea tree oil (melaleuca) to a few ounces of warm water, then spray countertops to naturally disinfect.
Bathroom freshener: Put a cotton ball soaked in lime or lemon oil behind the toilet for a bathroom refresher.
Bathtub scrub: Mix one-half cup of baking soda, one-half cup of vinegar and five drops of bergamot or lime oil; use as a scrub for a sink or bathtub.
Burnt pans cleaner: Use a few drops of lemon oil and some boiling water to help remove burnt food from pots and pans.
Carpet cleaner: Mix 20 drops of tea tree oil with Borax for homemade carpet powder.
Christmas scent: Add a drop of pine, sandalwood or cedarwood essential oil on a fire log about 30 minutes before burning.
Dishwasher fluid: Add a few drops of lemon oil to the dishwasher before washing for a spot-free rinse.
House fragrance: Diffuse clove, rosemary and orange essential oils when guests come over, and they will talk about how amazing your house smells.
Kitchen odor eliminator: Add a few drops of clove, cinnamon or citrus essential oil to a simmering pan of water to get rid of cooking odors.
Medicine cabinet: Makeover your medicine cabinet and create a family physician kit with essential oils of lavender, lemon, peppermint, tea tree, oregano and frankincense.
Mold killer: Add tea tree oil to your diffuser to kill mold and other pathogens in the air.
Mosquito repellent: Combine one drop each of lemongrass oil, citronella oil and eucalyptus oil with one teaspoon of coconut oil to make natural bug spray and rub on exposed skin. Reapply as needed.
Pest killer: Combine orange and clove oils and then spray to kill pests on contact.
Produce washer: To clean fruit and vegetables, add two drops of lemon oil to a large bowl of water, then wash.
Refrigerator cleaner: To freshen up the fridge or freezer when cleaning, add a few drops of lime, grapefruit or bergamot oil to the rinsing water.
Shoe smell eliminator: To remove the smell from shoes, add a few drops of tea tree oil and lemon oil to freshen them up.
Shower scum remover: Using a 16-ounce spray bottle, use four drops of eucalyptus essential oil and four drops of tea tree oil with warm water; spray onto your shower for natural mold-killing action.
Smoke eliminator: To remove cigarette smoke, put four drops of rosemary, tea tree and eucalyptus oil in a spray bottle and spray around the house.
Sports gear freshener: If your kids play sports, add two drops each of tea tree oil and lemon essential oil to one quart of warm water; next add four tablespoons of baking soda and mix. Use to clean ripe (!) jerseys, cleats and sports gear.
Trash can freshener: Put a cotton ball with two drops each of lemon oil and tea tree oil at the bottom of the trashcan to help decrease the odor and detoxify.
Vacuum cleaner freshener: Add 5–10 drops of your favorite oil in your vacuum bag or dust container.
Washing machine freshener: Add 10–20 drops of your favorite scent per load.
Lavender cake: Mix coconut flour, raw honey, organic eggs and lavender essential oil and bake at 350 degrees.
Lemon water: Use 2–3 drops of lemon essential oil in water for a delicious citrus flavor.
Mint chocolate cocoa: Add 2–3 drops of peppermint essential oil to hot cocoa for instant minty chocolate!
Mint tea: Use 1–2 drops of peppermint essential oil in your favorite tea for a hint of mint.
Peppermint patties: Use peppermint essential oil, coconut oil, dark chocolate and raw honey to make real peppermint treats.
Download the complete guide to these essential oil uses >>HERE << (right click / Save Link As).
Common Questions about Essential Oils
What is the best essential oil?
Choosing the best essential oil will depend on the health concern or condition that you are trying to remedy. Each essential oil is made up of different compounds and possess different properties, so while some oils are great for relaxing your mind, easing muscle tension and promoting restful sleep, other oils are stimulating, energy boosting and support cognitive function. To find out what essential oil is best for you, do some research on your specific health concern.
What are the best essential oils to start with?
The most common essential oils that everyone should have stored in their personal medicine cabinet include the following:
Lavender: heals burns, cuts, rashes, stings, reduces anxiety and promotes restful sleep.
Peppermint: improves joint and muscle pain, relieves digestive issues, reduces fevers, clears sinuses, improves asthma and bronchitis, and relieves headaches.
Frankincense: reduces inflammation, heals bruising, reduces scars, boosts immunity and promotes emotional well-being.
Tea tree: has antibacterial and antifungal properties, can be used to prevent and reduce infections, and cleans the air of pathogens and allergens.
How do I know which essential oil to buy?
This is one of the most vital things you must know about essential oils: not all essential oils are created equal. In fact, most of them are worthless to your health and often synthetic. Therefore, when buying essential oils — whether 5ml, 10ml or 15ml bottles — be certain they are certified USDA organic, 100 percent pure, therapeutic grade and indigenously sourced.
To learn more about how to use the best essential oils, check out my free, in-depth Essential Oils Guide.
Read Next: 20 Secret Ways to Use Coconut Oil for the Skin
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