Essential oils have been getting a lot of buzz lately, being known for healing a myriad of health conditions and helping you feel better overall. Maybe you’ve already heard about the benefits of lavender or peppermint essential oils, or perhaps you’ve received a starter kit as a gift. Either way, with a little practice and the guidance we offer below, we are sure you’ll become an expert in essential oils in no time!
If you’d like to give them a try, the first thing you need to know is that essential oils are not meant to be ingested. Instead, you can inhale them or use them topically. As they are extracts of well-known plants, these are completely natural alternatives that can help you fight stress, anxiety, and skin irritation, among other common problems. Are you ready to start using these natural compounds and send your illness packing? Keep on reading and discover the best essential oils, how to use them, and whether they will really work for you.
#1 - What Are Essential Oils Exactly?
Have you ever entered a spa and felt soothed and relaxed because of the delicious aroma of lavender and eucalyptus? Probably, the spa is using essential oils diffused to aromatize their space and make you feel the want to stay. Essential oils are unique compounds extracted from plants that successfully capture their essence, that is, their scent or flavour. These compounds are combined with a carrier oil and are made into the product we use for aromatherapy.
Research has proven that the smell of certain elements can help you overcome several health problems, such as insomnia, anxiety, stress, nausea, and even congestion. Some examples of essential oils include lavender, peppermint, lemon, and frankincense, but there are dozens more, which we are going to explore below!
#2 - How Do Essential Oils Work?
Are you ready to take the leap and start tapping into the power of essential oils to improve your health? The first step, then, is to understand how they work and the best way to introduce them into your routine. First, essential oils should never be swallowed. Instead, the chemicals in essential oils can be absorbed through your skin or can be inhaled using diffusers.
But how does therapy using these aromas work, exactly? Well, research shows that they can stimulate the part of your brain that plays a role in emotions and behaviours, triggering and forming memories (1). This explains why most people have flashback memories when smelling certain odours, like the smell of fresh bread can remind you of sitting in your grandma’s kitchen. But while inhalation is the fastest method to introduce essential oils into your body, it’s not the only one. You can also apply it to your skin, always taking all the necessary precautions.
#3 - Which Are the Most Popular Types of Essential Oils?
Many studies prove that aromatherapy can be effective when used alongside traditional medicine to treat certain conditions, like anxiety and stress (2), especially when used during a massage session (3). But the benefits of essential oils are not only limited to helping you cope with stress: there are many other conditions with which they can help, that go from digestion problems to eczema. Here we present you with the most popular types of essential oils so you can choose accordingly!
Peppermint for Better Digestion
If you suffer from nausea and digestive problems, using peppermint essential oil is certainly worth a try. Studies conducted in animals prove it’s useful when fighting bloating and indigestion (4), while many patients who suffered from Irritable Bowel System reported improvements after inhaling peppermint essential oil (5). Diffusing some peppermint will also help you cool down fatigued muscles after exercising!
Lavender to Relieve Stress
Lavender is known for having anxiety-reducing properties, which can do wonders for your mental health, especially when you’re going through a rough patch and can’t seem to be able to just sit back and relax. Next time you feel like forgetting about a stressful day at work, keep lavender essential oil in mind: you won’t regret it.
Sandalwood to Be More Focused Than Ever
Sandalwood has a delicious earthy aroma that will relax your mind, give you peace, and help you focus on any task you are pursuing. This essential oil is typically used with a diffuser, as it helps you inhale and exhale more deeply and consciously, promoting concentration. Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine have traditionally used sandalwood to treat diseases like the common cold, so whenever you feel a bit congested, you can add a few drops in your diffuser and watch your symptoms go away!
Bergamot to Improve Skin Conditions
If you enjoy floral fragrances with a spicy note, bergamot is for you. It has analgesic, antidepressant, and sedative properties too. All of this means that bergamot can help you feel relaxed and soothed but invigorated at the same time, as research proves it can be helpful when fighting fatigue (6). Just one warning: bergamot is phytotoxic, which means it can burn your skin if you are exposed to the sun after applying this oil to your body. To avoid this, it’s best to diffuse it rather than use it topically.
Rose for Better Mood & Reduced Anxiety
The purifying scent of rose is a brilliant choice whenever you are in a bad mood or need a rest from your anxiety. Rose essential oil can ease restlessness and provide you with a soothing, peaceful atmosphere. It’s also a great compound to fight depression and improve the quality of your sleep.
Chamomile for Relaxation
If you often feel stressed out or anxious, chances are you have tried chamomile tea to wind down, but this is not the only way you can enjoy the benefits of this medicinal herb. Instead, you can diffuse chamomile essential oil and absorb all of its anti-inflammatory properties while calming down and relaxing (7).
Ylang-Ylang to Forget About Headaches
With a sweet, floral aroma, Ylang-Ylang will help you treat headaches and nausea while perfuming your entire home. This essential oil is made from the plant of Cananga odorata genuina, which also has properties to improve and refresh your steam. You can apply this essential topically to tackle eczema and other skin conditions but always consult with your doctor before starting a new therapy.
Tea Tree for an Improved Immune System
Tea tree essential oil is a powerful immune stimulant and antiseptic that can help you strengthen your system against harmful germs and other pathogens. Release its fresh smell and give your immune system the boost it needs to fight infections. Plus, if diffused, tea tree will give your home a soothing, inviting ambience that will make everyone you invite over feel at ease.
Jasmine to Help with Depression and Childbirth
Jasmine doesn’t get as much attention as more popular essential oils like lavender, but it’s equally as amazing for your health and wellbeing. In addition to smelling its warm and exotic fragrance, if you diffuse jasmine oil, you’ll enjoy an enhanced self-confidence, an uplifted spirit, and renewed energy. Also, some studies prove that jasmine can relieve menstrual and labour pain in women (8).
Lemon for Better Digestion and Mood
It typically takes around 60-75 lemons to produce one tiny bottle of essential oil, and this will show as soon as you open it! Your home will be flooded with the delicious scent of lemon, usually associated with freshness and cleanliness. Plus, lemon's purifying properties clear the air and aid your digestion, help you get rid of headaches, and can even improve your mood in just a few minutes.
#4 - How to Use Essential Oils: Diffusion & Dilution
As stated above, essential oils are not to be taken orally. Instead, if you want to enjoy all the benefits of these natural compounds, there are two main ways to do so: breathing them in or applying them to your skin.
The way to breathe them in is by using a diffuser, a small device that disperses the essential oil into the air of your room as if by magic. Amazon and other sites offer a wide variety of diffusers, such as:
- Ultrasonic ones, which are filled with water and then a couple of drops of your chosen essential oil. You then just have to switch them on, inhale the delicious scent and relax.
- An alternative is to use nebulizing diffusers that don’t use water. This is the best option for those who live in damp homes and don’t want to add more water to their room.
- Evaporative diffusers use an internal fan, which makes them noisier, but they can also work as humidifiers for those who live in dryer places.
And if you’re not really into buying a diffuser, you can still make use of the delicious scent of essential oils. You can simply add a few drops of your favourite compounds to a cotton ball and place it in the place where you want to disperse the fragrance. This can be your room, your bag, and even your garbage bin.
Using Essential Oils Topically
The other option is to apply essential oils to your skin, and for this, there are also many techniques available.
- Dilute some drops of your favourite essential oil in some carrier oil (such as almond, olive, sesame oil) and get a relaxing massage.
- Add some drops to warm water and take the best bath you can imagine, nourishing your body and mind.
- You can also apply some drops of diluted essential oil to your forehead, behind your ears, the back of your neck, your temple, your wrists, and almost anywhere! For instance, if you want to relax your muscles after a long workout, you can apply some peppermint oil to your arms, legs, soles of your feet, and any other muscle groups that feel sore.
Don’t apply essential oils on:
- Open wounds
- Your eyes
- Sensitive skin
If it’s the first time you are applying essential oils to your skin, it’s a good idea to try it on a small patch of your body (maybe your arm) to make sure the oil won’t harm you.
Aromatherapy Is at Your Fingertips
Using essential oils is an amazing way to target certain health conditions in a natural way. Just make sure you consult with your physician before starting any new treatment (and be really careful when manipulating essential oils and applying them to your skin!). Don’t be afraid to try out different techniques and oils, because what works perfectly for one person may not work that well for another. Luckily, you’ll have dozens of different natural essential oils to discover and add to your wellness routine to obtain long-lasting results!
And if you are looking for more natural alternatives to stay calm and relaxed, get a good night’s sleep, and enjoy a boost of energy during the day, you can try out our Happy New You Package. This science-backed formula will nourish your body and mind, helping you get all the rest you need while you feel your best during the day! You can also take our Free Comprehensive Health Assessment to get to know more about our health supplements and decide which one works better for you.