The Best Essential Oils for the Home and How to Use Them


By Alexa Santory

 

 

In Tuesday’s Beauty School lesson, we touched on some of the most popular uses for essential oils, which included using them as aromatherapy. Burning, diffusing, and using essential oils around your home and in your space is a great way to decompress, destress, and calm the mind. It’s also a way to repel unwanted insects, cultivate a space for more creativity, and boost energy in your home. Let’s get into some of the best essential oils to keep in your space for when you just wanna relax to when you’re on a super tight deadline.

What are some ways I can use essential oils in my home/space?

The best way to get the aromatherapeutic results from essential oils is to diffuse them. This method is extremely popular because it requires little to no effort in getting the scent to fill the room. Nebulizing diffusers, or the white robotic looking ones, have become a staple in households where relaxation is the ultimate goal. These vaporize the essential oils and deliver their aromas throughout the room the diffuser is in. And then some. There are also oil burners, which require a tea light candle to be burned underneath a small pool of an essential oil. This option is nice because scented candles don’t have very obvious scents when they're being burned. Burning a candle underneath an essential oil makes the aroma that much stronger. Another great diffuser option is reed diffusers. In these, the essential oils are all blended together to get a nice balance of smells. The distance that the scent travels is much shorter than that of a nebulizing diffuser, but the results are similar -- you're space is sure to smell better and have an overall more comforting and relaxing quality about it. You can also use essential oils around the house as natural cleaning products.

If you’re stressed out and want a relaxed and calm space, try…

Lavender oil has come up a lot over throughout this lesson and that’s because it just works!! Lavender is super relaxing, it slows down the heart rate and makes the muscles relax, and it promotes good sleeping habits. I recommend diffusing lavender oil in the bedroom to create a chill environment before bedtime.
Bergamot oil has a bunch of uses for our minds and bodies, including being a really effective pain reducer. There are molecules in bergamot that promote relaxation, reduce stress, soothe nerves, and ease anxiety. I recommend applying this one topically and breathing deeply to get the full effect, especially if you’re experiencing physical pain.
Orange oil is a great mood lifter and helps promote relaxation. Citrus oils are especially helpful after a long day of work where you just want to unwind and put yourself in a better mood.
Try adding any of these, plus ylang ylang or geranium oil to a diffuser to keep your space super chill.

If you’re having trouble sleeping, try…

Roman chamomile, which is super calming. Ever drink a chamomile tea before bed? Try adding a drop of this with some coconut oil into your tea before bed and you'll sleep like a baby. If tea isn't your thing, Roman chamomile oil mixes well with other sleepy time oils like lavender and ylang ylang, which can be used in a diffuser or oil burner at bedtime!
Bergamot is especially good for those of us whose minds decide to run a marathon right when it's time for bed. Calm those anxious thoughts and breathe in some diffused bergamot mixed with cedar wood oil for a comfy, marathons free nights sleep.
Valerian is a great muscle and mind soother. It’s woodsy scent mixes well with other woodsy scents in a diffuser or you could add a few drops to an Epsom salt bath before bed for ultimate relaxation.
Lavender is on this list too, of course. We already know how deeply relaxing this oil can be on your skin, but it's probably the most widely known natural sleep aid. You can diffuse it with extra calm ylang ylang, or you can apply it topically to your pressure points before bed. After applying, breathe deeply and let the scent sooth you. It also works great as a relaxing massage oil.
If you’re having trouble focusing, try…
Ylang ylang oil is another oil that’s come up quite a bit. That’s because this floral oil is jam packed with a multitude of benefits. Ylang ylang is a great oil to diffuse in your work area. It helps promote concentration and focus, while also being super relaxing.
Basil oil is a great plant oil that increases alertness. I’d recommend applying this to a piece of fabric to inhale throughout the day, or to a diffuser.
Sage oil helps improve alertness and memory. This is a great oil to diffuse in your space in lift your spirits as well as create a productive work environment.

If you’re trying to keep insects out of your space, try…

Lavender oil repels a whole bunch of insects like flies and mosquitos, good to know since summer is here! Wear lavender oil on your skin to keep the bugs away or trying burning some lavender oil in an oil burner. You won't see a single mosquito be anywhere near your house. And as someone who's already gotten bitten this year, you're welcome.
Peppermint oil is a good way to keep spiders and other bugs out of your space. Bugs, especially spiders, absolutely hate the smell of peppermint oil. Try mixing a few drops of peppermint oil with some water in a spray bottle and spray it into the corners where bugs tend to lurk. Also, soak some cotton balls in the oil to place around the windows so bugs won't even try getting in.
Citronella oil is used in those bug body sprays and in those massive candles your aunt has on her back patio. Citronella repels mosquitoes, moths, and other insects that come out to play in these warmer months. You can make your own bug repellent by mixing a 12 ounce bottle of alcohol free witch hazel with 15 drops of citronella, 15 drops of lemongrass oil, and 10 drops of peppermint oil. Shake it up and spray it on to keep bugs away from you.

We spoke with one of our lovely supporters and stand out community members, Stephanie Rice, about her take on essential oils.

Stephanie is a distributor for Young Living Essential Oils and essential oils expert, and has some important info and perspectives to share.

How did you get into essential oils? 

As a child of seven years old, my mother noticed how much I strangely liked vegetables and my inquisitive mind about water and fasting. She blessed me with my first herbs: Burdock Root, Chickweed, Sage and Chamomile and handed me a book called Back to Eden by Jethro Kloss. This book intrigued me and blew my little mind right open with the intricacies of healthy living practices and the first mention of essential oils that my little eyes had ever seen. Although I continued my herbal teas and concoctions, the beginning of my use of essential oils and understanding their connection to
plant life, would start many years later.

Very cool! What are some of your favorite ways to use essential oils?

Besides diffusing I also use essential oils in my hair and skin concoctions. I often rub my dog, Maxine, down with Lavender as it calms her down. I add Spearmint to my body lotion for a nice refreshing scent and invigorating feeling and I make body spritzes with Geranium that supports a clear complexion and smells wonderful!! I make sure to add a little glycerin as a carrier oil in my spritz’ and teas for protection. I also adore using essential oils for my hair! My very favorite combination of oils that will remain a staple in my arsenal is Rosemary, Lavender and Peppermint. I love adding them to my oils and my teas. Those three oils together give off such a beautiful scent and their properties in supporting follicle stimulation, hair growth and better blood circulation in the scalp are amazing. I also love to use many other essential oils that promote hair health such as Sage, Lemon, Patchouli, Myrrh, Cypress and Carrot seed essential oils. The use of Carrot seed essential oil has surprisingly been suggested to Rogaine users to boost hair regrowth!

How long have you worked with them/what do you do?

In 2012, I was on a search for this water machine that made 5 different kinds of water, one of them being Alkaline. I’d soon bump into an old high school classmate who happened to be a Kangen Water Machine Distributor. She sold me my first water machine. I noticed that every time I visited her house it smelled so good and every time I’d leave I’d feel so relaxed and renewed. I’d find out later that she was diffusing Lavender and Geranium, which were the first oils I’d purchase from her. I started making my own scented sprays, oils and started having regular aromatherapy sessions at my home. I was hooked and I’d only scratched the surface. I became a Kangen Water Machine Distributor and a Young Living Essential Oil Distributor within that year!

What's the best way to purchase essential oils/things to look out for?

Therapeutic essential oils differ from synthetics in that they actually support healing in the body, while synthetics just give off a nice scent and provide the body with toxins. There are also many essential oils out there that are un-pure and laced with harmful chemicals and fillers; so make sure that the essential oils that you use are 100% pure and Therapeutic grade to ensure safety and potency. Essential oils are also both light and heat sensitive so make sure to keep them in a cool and dark place to insure its potency and effectiveness. Look for the directions of usage on the bottle to see if the oil can be applied
directly to the skin (neat) or if they need a carrier oil. For instance, Cinnamon and Peppermint oils can burn without a carrier oil…. believe me… I know firsthand lol. Also, in researching the EOs that you are interested in, it’s useful in knowing the ORAC value which measures the antioxidant level. This may help you in finding the EO that most productively suits your needs and addresses your particular ailments or concerns.

 

Again, special thanks to Stephanie for this super helpful information.

Okay, let's recap

 

  • Aromatherapy is an amazing alternative medicine method that uses our sense of smell to trigger our bodies and minds into relaxation, ease pain, promote better sleep, and boost energy. Finding the right essential oil or oils for your mind and space will promote these reactions and hopefully provide you with some relief from the everyday stress.
  • Don’t be afraid of adding essential oils to your skincare routine. As long as you dilute them properly, they’re safe to use on the skin. Make sure to spot test the oil on an inconspicuous part of the body in case you experience a reaction. If you do experience a reaction, stop using the oil immediately.
  • Adding essential oils to your hair routine can help promote hair growth and keep the scalp healthy and happy. Remember, happy scalp = happy hair. There’s a essential oil for all of your most pressing hair concerns. Spot test them before applying them, and never apply an undiluted essential oil to the scalp.
  • Essential oils can be unsafe for pets, causing them to get sick, lethargic, or pass on. If you have a pet and you use essential oils in your home, be sure to monitor your pet’s behavior. Avoid certain essential oils around your furry friend, like lavender, lemon, and eucalyptus. Your pet’s sense of smell is much more elevated than ours and certain oils can trigger illnesses. There are pet friendly oils, though, like myrrh and peppermint.

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