Essential oils have become an important tool for many people. They can come in handy for a variety of issues including stress relief, sleep issues, headaches, muscle aches – even keeping your house fresh.
But if you’re a novice, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with all the options. From bergamot to jasmine to oregano oil, the variety of benefits that these oils offer can make anybody’s head spin. However, learning the right way to use them will help to clear up confusion and allow you to explore the many non-pharmaceutical benefits they offer.
Here are a few important notes. Never ingest an oil. Test a little on your skin first to check for any potential reaction. For use on your skin, blend an essential oil with a carrier oil (like almond). There are many quality “diffusers” that can send the aromatherapeutic benefits throughout your space, such as lavender for sleep.
While there are dozens of oils (and some experts even have “recipes” for mixing several together for very specific uses), check out these four essentials you should always have on hand.
Lavender is multi-purpose. It’s made up of anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, antiseptic (disinfectant of the body), antifungal, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties. It is also detoxifying, hypotensive (lowers blood pressure), analgesic (relieves pain), antispasmodic (suppresses muscle spasms), and has sedative effects. Whew! That’s a lot to pack into one oil.
Because lavender contains all of these properties, it’s easy to use for a number of things including:
- Promoting relaxation and sleep, while easing anxiety. Either diffuse it or put a few drops on your wrists or pillow.
- Easing pain and spasms. You can put drops of essential oil in a warm bath or mix it with a carrier oil, such as coconut, and rub it onto the areas of pain. It also can help to reduce swelling and inflammation.
- Disinfecting your home. Simply add drops of lavender essential oil to a spray bottle with water and vinegar and use it to spray counters, fabric, etc.
Related: “Herbs For Gut Health”
Peppermint oil can be used in aromatherapy and on the skin. It is often used for health concerns such as headaches, joint aches and pains, itchy skin, coughing, chronic stress, and boosting cognitive function.
Here are some uses for peppermint oil:
- Diffuse peppermint oil to help with coughing and colds, as well as headaches, stress reduction, and clearing brain fog.
- Use a carrier oil to dilute peppermint oil and apply to skin for pain reduction, especially associated with muscles and joints.
- Mix peppermint oil with water and spray around your house for an all-natural bug spray. Spiders hate peppermint oil!
The leaves of the eucalyptus plant are where the oil is derived from. And this magical oil can be used in many ways, including:
- To ease respiratory ailments such as a congested chest or a frequent cough, eucalyptus oil can be inhaled through a diffuser. You can also mix the oil with a carrier oil and rub it into your chest, similar to a homemade Vicks.
- To keep the bugs away, use a mixture of eucalyptus oil and water. Simply add a few drops to a spray bottle of water and spray on yourself to keep mosquitoes and biting bugs away when venturing outside.
- Use a diluted version on wounds to prevent infection.
Tea Tree oil, like many others, can be used for many things. However, it’s most popular in the world of beauty. This is not only because it contains anti-inflammatory properties, but also because it’s safe to apply directly to the skin.
Check out these simple ways to use Tea Tree oil:
- Since tea tree oil has antibacterial properties, you can use a few drops under your arms as a natural deodorant.
- Fight acne by mixing it with water and dabbing it onto acne-affected areas. This will also help fight redness.
- Use a few drops of tea tree oil in your shampoo to help fight and protect against dandruff.
– Laurie Riihimaki