Sandalwood, tea tree, cedarwood, and rosemary — do these names sound familiar to you? It’s no coincidence that essential oils are having a moment right now. When used wisely, they can offer many exciting health benefits and even help cure certain ailments and conditions.

Research suggests that these oils have been used for centuries.[1] However, the modern-day popularity of essential oils is undeniable. Over the last few decades, we’ve seen an immense rise in the use of alternative and complementary medicines, such as incorporating these oils into your everyday health routine.[2]

If you’re completely new to this area, you may be wondering what all the hype is about. So, what are essential oils and how can they support your overall wellness? Within this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover the following topics:

  • What are essential oils and how do they work?
  • Which essential oils are best?
  • The core essential oils benefits
  • How to use essential oils and are essential oils safe?

When we’re done, you should have a full understanding of essential oils and how you may incorporate them into your current lifestyle. Using these oils doesn’t have to be difficult and can be a holistic part of your everyday wellness routines. Here’s what you need to know.

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Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to Get Started

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What Are Essential Oils?

Let’s start with the basics: What are essential oils? Put simply, they’re the oils extracted from aromatic plants, such as lavender, peppermint, and myrrh.[3]

Essential oils are completely natural and experts suggest that they could be a holistic alternative to contemporary (chemical-based) medications.[4] For that reason, certain essential oils are currently used pharmaceutically, but you can buy most oils over-the-counter.[5]

Later in this guide, we’ll dive deeper into the most effective essential oil uses and the best essential oils currently available. Needless to say, understanding the potential benefits of each essential oil will help you better determine whether they’ll work for your needs.

How do Essential Oils Work?

Wondering how such simple, all-natural oils can yield so many amazing benefits? You’ve come to the right place. As “woo-woo” as some folks make them sound, the numerous applications for essential oils aren’t magic-based — they’re backed by science!

First off, it’s important to note that these oils are not meant to be ingested. With that in mind, you should not consume these oils. They’re highly-concentrated and can cause you serious internal distress.

Instead, one of the most common (and easiest) ways you can use essential oils is through aromatherapy. In basic terms, that means that you inhale the aroma of the essential oils through your nose and mouth. For this method, you can also use an essential oil diffuser, which disperses small molecules of the oil — and it’s scent — into the air.

Experts believe inhaling these oils can activate parts of the limbic system in your brain. This area is related to your long-term memory, sense of smell, and your emotions.[6] Moreover, the system plays a role in some of your physical processes, including your heart rate, cognitive response, and blood pressure.[7] 

The idea behind aromatherapy is that by activating your limbic system you can positively manipulate both your physical and mental functions.

However, aromatherapy is not the only option. You can also apply some essential oils onto your skin.

Research published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests that doing so can lead to beneficial plant molecules being absorbed through your skin.[8] The underlying theory is that you can target various “trouble” areas of your body using this technique. (Please note that research is currently lacking in this particular area, and much of what we know is anecdotal.)

Who Should Use Essential Oils?

Essential oils have such a long list of health benefits that almost everyone can find a use for them! For those looking for natural ways to treat common conditions, they’re a great place to start. These plant oils contain properties that help with relaxation, anti-inflammation, and disinfection.[9]

They can help relieve a range of ailments from stress and anxiety, to bloating and indigestion, to skin acne. Additionally, these oils are also suitable for those who want to create a more health-conscious home environment. 

Essential oil blends make great all-natural cleaning products free from harmful chemicals. Diffusers are also healthier options for adding scents to your home than commercial air fresheners.

For more about the pollutants you’re exposed to on a daily basis, and how to utilize essential oils to effectively detox your home — and your body! — check out The Incredible Power of Essential Oils.

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What Are the Best Essential Oils?

best essential oils infographic

Now that you understand the basics, let’s talk about the best essential oils. We’ve highlighted peppermint, frankincense, lemongrass, lemon, rosemary, bergamot, copaiba, cinnamon, clary sage, lavender, tea tree, eucalyptus, and sweet orange as our chart-toppers.

These oils are widely available in the US, which means they’re easy-to-obtain choices to bulk up your budding collection. Better still, each oil we’ve listed offers multiple benefits — giving you more bang for your buck!

Here’s a quick glimpse of what each of our top 13 oils can do for you:

  • Peppermint: This refreshingly minty oil has been known to help with irritable bowels, nausea, and headache relief.[10][11][12]
  • Frankincense: Also known as olibanum oil, frankincense essential oil has proven useful as an anti-inflammatory, even for those dealing with pain associated with radiation-based cancer treatments.[13][14] Recent studies have shown that it also has mild "cardioprotective" elements, and can be helpful for managing your heart health.[15]
  • Lemongrass: This oil can be useful for treating some very uncomfortable (and often embarrassing) fungal-related issues, like athlete's foot, jock itch, candida outbreaks, and ringworm.[16][17] It can also be used as an effective mouthwash, helping to fight bad breath at the source by targeting gingivitis.[18] Just don't swallow any — rinse and spit to get the breath-freshening benefits without any unwanted tummy upsets.
  • Lemon: The humble lemon, when used as an essential oil, might be your new secret weapon against acne.[19] Since lemon essential oil is chock-full of antibacterial properties, it's excellent for cleansing your skin. It's also an eco-friendly addition to DIY household cleaners![20]
  • Rosemary: If you're looking to improve your memory, rosemary essential oil might help![21] Care more about what's on top of your head than what's inside it? No judgement here! Rosemary's also beneficial for itchy scalps, dandruff reduction, and hair regrowth.[22][23]
  • Bergamot: This oil's perfect if you're in need of stress reduction and mild anxiety relief.[24] It's also shown promise as a complementary treatment for symptoms of depression.[25]
  • Copaiba: Made from the oil-resin extracted from copaiba trees, this essential oil can help with both pain relief and wound care. [26][27]
  • Cinnamon: This powerhouse essential oil has antibacterial, antifungal, antioxidant, and antidiabetic properties.[28] As a huge bonus, Ladies, cinnamon oil has also proven beneficial for lessening the painful cramps and nausea associated with menstruation, making "that time" of the month more bearable.[29]
  • Clary Sage: When inhaled, clary sage has been known to reduce symptoms of stress.[30] It's also been helpful for some menopausal women as it can potentially reduce hot flashes.[31]
  • Lavender: Widely-known for its abilities to help you relax, lavender essential oil is beneficial for promoting a sense of calm, minimizing sleep disturbances, and easing your overall nervous system.[32]
  • Tea Tree: A popular medicinal oil, tea tree has been used as an effective disinfectant, wound antiseptic, and acne treatment.[33][34][35] It also works well as a chemical-free insect repellant![36]
  • Eucalyptus: The cineole in eucalyptus oil has proven to be an effective treatment for sinusitis and other sinus-related issues.[37] Adding a few drops of this oil to your essential oil diffuser is a great way to clear up congestion!
  • Sweet Orange: If you're looking for a quick boost to your mood (and your sex drive!), be sure to add sweet orange essential oil to your collection![38]

If you’re just starting out on your essential oils journey, ensure you invest in these must-have oils and also check out 

The Incredible Power of Essential Oils for more details.

10 Important Essential Oil Benefits

So, what are the main essential oils benefits? If you’ve been wondering whether these oils are right for you and your wellness, read through these science-backed advantages.

The more you understand these oils, the better. Here are 10 of the most astounding benefits you can receive from essential oils:

1. Improves Sleep

essential oils for sleep

You lie awake in bed, watching the backlit alarm clock next to you. The minutes and hours keep ticking away and you’ve still not had any sleep. Before you know it, it’ll be time to get up and you’ll have to face the day almost completely sleep deprived...

If that scenario sounds familiar, you likely struggle with maintaining a solid sleep pattern. Between 50 and 70 million American adults have a sleeping disorder so you’re not alone.[39]

Luckily, essential oils could help. There’s a wealth of research to suggest that using these oils in your bedtime practice could enable you to get a longer, better night’s sleep.

One review published in the US National Library of Medicine suggested that inhaling essential oils had a positive effect on participants’ sleep.[40] The researchers concluded that this form of holistic treatment may be used for people with “mild sleep disturbances.”[41]

Using an essential oil diffuser as an aromatherapy device can also help people with anxiety improve their sleep. One study published in the US Library of National Medicine tested the effect of lavender essential oil on both sleep quality and anxiety levels of patients with coronary issues.[42] The results of the research suggested that using lavender essential oil before bed improved people’s sleep and lowered their anxiety levels.[43] The researchers concluded that this treatment could be a cost-effective treatment for patients.

Another study suggests that lavender essential oil can improve the sleep of women who’ve recently given birth.[44] The new mothers taking part in the study were advised to keep lavender oil-infused cotton balls next to their beds as they slept each night.

The results of the study showed that this small intervention could help women improve their sleep. The researchers suggested this aromatherapy could be a beneficial part of maternal healthcare.[45]

Takeaway: Essential oils could help to improve your sleep when used in aromatherapy. They even help new mothers get some much-needed rest!

2. Reduces Anxiety

essential oils for anxiety

Anxiety disorders are the most common type of mental illness in the United States with 40 million American adults suffering from one of these conditions.[46]

While there are different types of disorders, symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder include: strong feelings of worry, becoming tired easily, feeling wound up, being irritable, having trouble concentrating, muscle tension, and sleep problems.[47]

If you have an anxiety-related disorder, doing something about it sooner rather than later is crucial to your health.

Of course, there are many different treatments you can seek out. One you may want to consider is using essential oils to help calm you down. Several animal-based studies suggest that these oils can have a positive effect on both anxiety and stress levels.[48]

One interesting study found that lemon vapor oil had anti-stress properties when used on mice performing tasks.[49] Interestingly enough, the study’s researchers concluded that this type of essential oil could have an “antidepressant-like effect.”[50]

Researchers suggest that essential oils and aromatherapy could be beneficial as a complementary therapy for people displaying anxiety symptoms.[51] One study found that smelling lavender and rosemary decreased the levels of cortisol in people’s saliva.[52] Known as the stress hormone, cortisol levels rise when people become stressed or anxious.[53] With that in mind, lowering your body’s cortisol levels may lower your overall stress.

Smelling sweet orange essential oil could also help to reduce your anxiety symptoms. Research on healthy volunteers found that this scent had a positive effect on people’s anxiety and mood.[54] The researchers suggested that the results of this study gave scientific support to the use of sweet orange in aromatherapy treatments.[55]

Takeaway: If you’re suffering from anxiety, speaking to a health professional is key. However, essential oils may help you further lower your overall stress levels.

3. Limits Headaches and Boosts Nervous System Health

essential oils for headaces

The throbbing pain is too much to handle. You’re finding it hard to concentrate on anything but the aching feeling that’s taken over you...

Headaches can be distracting and painful. If you regularly find yourself suffering with this problem, finding some form of relief is undoubtedly your top priority. Learning how to use essential oils to ease the pain of a headache and improve your nervous system’s responses, in general, is the way to go.

woman with hands on head looking down

Essential Oils and Headaches

Research from the Neurological Clinic of the Christian Albrechts University suggests that using essential oils as a holistic headache treatment could be effective.[56] 

In particular, the study highlighted the use of a combination of peppermint oil, eucalyptus oil, and ethanol for managing the symptoms of a headache.[57] However, the researchers suggested that they’d need further investigations to conclude the full effectiveness of this treatment.

A migraine is a particularly severe type of headache, which usually occurs without any reason and can be accompanied by auras or other visual problems.[58] Chamomile essential oil is used in countries, such as Iran, as a traditional treatment for these headaches.[59]

Research suggests chamomile oil, which has anti-inflammatory properties, can indeed help to ease headaches.[60]

Thanks to its relaxing properties, lavender essential oil could also combat migraines. Research found that using this essential oil for 15 minutes could help people lower the severity of headache attacks.[61] Put simply, using lavender essential oil when a migraine starts to come on could help you manage its symptoms.

A scientific review into the effectiveness of lavender essential oil suggests that — while there’s evidence it relieves headaches — more research is needed.[62] The article also stated that the common uses for this oil, i.e. aromatherapy and massage, lack solid evidence, which emphasizes the need for future trials.[63] 

The next time you’re suffering from a headache, reaching for some peppermint or eucalyptus oil could be a savvy move. Research suggests that these two essential oils could have both a muscle-relaxing and mentally-relaxing effect.[64]

The study also found that the essential oils had a positive effect on headaches, meaning lower levels of pain.[65] However, the evidence isn’t strong given that this study only included 32 participants.

Rosemary essential oil in a small bottle and fresh rosemary

Essential Oils and the Nervous System

In simple terms, the nervous system is the name given to all of the nerves in your body.[66] This system is responsible for a variety of physical and mental responses, such as pain and your moods.[67]

There’s some evidence to support that using essential oils can help you to better control your nervous system, leading to pain reduction and mood management.

For instance, research published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests that inhaling rosemary oil could affect your brain waves and impact your mood.[68] The study suggested that using the essential oil in this way could improve thought processes and enhance a person’s alertness.[69]

Another randomized controlled trial suggested that using lavender and lemon essential oils could help improve people’s moods.[70] The study looked at how inhaling the scent of these oils impacted the nervous system and, specifically, how positive people feel. While the study was small, the results suggest that using these oils could be highly beneficial.

Takeaway: Essential oils may ease headaches. In particular, inhaling lavender essence could offer noticeable pain relief.

4. Better Gut Health and Lower Inflammation

essential oils for gut health

Gut health is a hot topic. Research suggests that your gut health can impact your general overall health in a significant way.[71]

For that reason, ensuring you maintain a healthy digestive system is a smart step towards taking care of your everyday wellness. One of the most intriguing essential oils uses could be supporting your gut bacteria and health.

Initial research suggests that using essential oil diffusers could boost antioxidant and antibacterial properties.[72] That, in turn, could potentially help people to keep their guts healthy and ward off harmful bacteria.

With that in mind, let’s take a deeper look at the current research:

women with abdominal pain standing, holding the body and hands

Essential Oils and IBS

Between 10 and 15% of American adults have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), making it the most commonly-diagnosed disease by gastroenterologists.[73] Symptoms of this problem include gas, bloating, and even diarrhea.[74]

If you have irritable bowels, you should speak to a medical professional about how you can manage it. However, essential oils could help too. Research published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests that herbal and plant essential oils could be a viable treatment for bacterial bowel problems.[75] Aside from aiding the management of IBS, the study suggested that this method could also be therapeutic for people suffering from Crohn’s disease.[76]

One study published in the US National Library of Medicine looked at the effectiveness of coriander, lemon balm, and spearmint leaf extracts in managing IBS.[77] The results found that most of these essential oils have antibacterial properties, which could mean that they can help people suffering from the condition.[78] However, more clinical trials are needed to determine the full role these oils may play in disease management.

Other research into possible treatments for IBS suggests that ginger, garlic, fenugreek, and turmeric could have a positive impact on managing its symptoms.[79] The researchers concluded that small changes to a person’s diet could help them to ease the pain associated with IBS and avoid some of the symptoms.[80]

Specifically, researchers identified rosemary essential oil as potentially being effective in supporting gut health.[81] The results showed that the oil was effective in lowering colon tissue lesions in rats and could have the same effect on people.[82]

Egg shell on kitchen counter

Essential Oils and Salmonella

Salmonella is a dangerous bacterial disease, which is responsible for 420 American deaths every year.[83] 

Research into the power of cumin, cinnamon, cardamon, and clove extract suggests that these oils could have antibacterial properties, which may help to prevent this disease.[84]

The results noted that a combination of these essential oils may help to protect people from the illness and stop the harmful bacterial build-up.

Bottle of essential oil and lavender flowers in bowl

Essential Oils as Anti-Inflammatories

As if that weren’t enough, there’s a body of evidence to suggest that some essential oils also have anti-inflammatory properties. That means these oils may help people to manage a wide variety of health concerns that relate to uncomfortable inflammation.

Research suggests that lavender essential oil sports anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties.[85] That means that not only could it help improve gut health but it may also help to fight against other bacteria-based illnesses and conditions.

Tea tree oil — one of the most popular essential oils — also has medicinal qualities. One study suggests that this particular oil could have both antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory characteristics.[86] However, there’s still a need for additional research to determine this as an undeniable fact.

One animal-based study also suggests that thyme and oregano essential oils may have an anti-inflammatory effect on mice.[87] Plus, in similar research published in the US National Library of Medicine, results suggested that some essential oils may help treat osteoarthritis and IBS.[88] The latter results are due to the anti-inflammatory nature of the essential oils tested.

Takeaway: Thanks to their antibacterial qualities, essential oils may help to improve your gut health. Speak to a professional for more info!

5. Aids with Weight Loss

essential oils for weight loss

Almost 40% of American adults are considered obese, according to national statistics.[89] Losing weight can be a long, difficult journey. While increasing your exercise levels and eating well are two important factors, you may also want to consider other lifestyle changes to help propel you toward your goal.

As always, you should speak with a medical professional to get their advice when it comes to safe diet planning.

Surprisingly, how you feel each day may affect your waistline. Research published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests that stress plays a major role in people becoming and, even more crucially, staying obese.[90] For that reason, finding ways to better manage your daily stress could also help you lose weight.

Since around 50% of people suffer from either work or lifestyle-related stress, managing the problem is essential.[91] One study published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests that using roll-on essential oils could help people lower their stress levels.[92] The researchers recommended using “high quality” essential oils for the best results.[93]

Want to learn more about essential oils and weight loss? Grab The Incredible Power of Essential Oils and discover how to lose excess fat the easy way!

Takeaway: Stress is related to weight gain. Using essential oils may help you to lower your overall stress levels!

6. Kills Acne and Improves Skin Health

essential oils for skin health

Do you have adult acne? Spots and breakouts can be unpleasant and unsightly. While most of us associate this skin problem with teenagers, acne can actually occur at any point during your life, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.[94]

In fact, acne is the most common skin condition in America with up to 50 million adults having acne breakouts each year.[95]

If you’re wondering how to use essential oils to manage your adult acne, you’ve come to the right place. Research suggests that orange peel extract can have a beneficial effect on skin repair.[96]

In basic terms, that means you may be able to use orange essential oil to minimize the appearance of your acne scars. Of course, you should be sure to speak to a qualified dermatologist before attempting to treat this skin condition at home.

Takeaway: Essential oils could help to improve your sleep when used in aromatherapy. They even help new mothers get some much-needed rest!

7. Reduces Colds, Coughs, Allergies, and Sore Throat

essential oils for throat health

A sore throat and runny nose are often the first signs of a common cold. When you’re suffering from this illness, you’ll experience a variety of nasty symptoms including headaches, body aches, coughing, and sneezing.[97]

While colds tend to go away on their own in around seven to 10 days, there are some holistic treatments you can try to make your symptoms more bearable.[98] Some evidence suggests that essential oils can reduce colds, coughs, allergies, and sore throats.

First, let’s deal with the sore throat issue. One animal-based study published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests tea tree oil can help lower the impact of throat and mouth infections.[99] Some people may find that it’s beneficial to inhale this essential oil when they’re feeling ill as it could help clear their sinuses.

Doctors will often prescribe antibiotics when a person has an illness or bacterial issue, such as a throat infection. However, one of the major challenges in medicine right now is the fact that many people are becoming immune to antibiotics.[100] Research suggests that using essential oils can help lower a person’s immunity to this vital treatment.[101] Speak to your doctor about this issue for more information on how it could work for you.

One of the most effective ways to fight off colds, sore throats, and coughs is to use antibacterial medicine. Research suggests that both cumin and coriander essential oils boast astounding antibacterial properties.[102] With more research, there’s a chance these oils could prove to be effective treatments for common illnesses.

What’s more, a study published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests that using essential oils may help to support your immune system.[103] In particular, the researchers identified lavender as having immune function-boosting characteristics.[104]

The stronger your immune system is, the better your body can fight against things like allergies and colds.[105]

Takeaway: From boosting your immune system to helping antibiotics work as intended, essential oils may protect you from coughs, colds, and allergies.

8. Additional Hair Growth and Dandruff Regulation

essential oils for hair

Longing for luscious, beautiful hair? If you’re hoping to enhance your hair and avoid dandruff, essential oils could be the answer.

Research from the School of Cosmetic Science suggests that using a tonic containing lemongrass essential oil may help you avoid dandruff.[106] Study participants used the solution for two weeks and saw significant results when compared to the control group.

Takeaway: Using lemongrass essential oil in your hair care routine may help you reduce dandruff. Speak to a doctor about this issue.

9. Lowers Risk of Cancer

essential oils for cancer

Cancer is one of the main causes of death on a global level.[107] By 2030, experts predict that the number of new cases of cancer per year will rise to 23.6 million.[108]

Needless to say, everyone wants to lower their risk for getting cancer as best they can. Interestingly, there’s some evidence to suggest that using essential oils, in addition to healthy lifestyle changes, could help.

For instance, one revealing animal-based study found that lemongrass essential oil could potentially help stop the growth of cancerous tumors.[109] The researchers stated that the oil had promising anticancer activity properties.[110]

Takeaway: There’s some evidence to support the anticancer properties of essential oils, but research is limited. If you’re concerned about this issue, speak to a doctor.

10. Helps with Menopause

essential oils for menopause

Menopause is a normal part of aging for women. However, it can come with its fair share of irritating side effects. From mood swings and incontinence to night sweats and sleep problems, there’s a variety of issues you may encounter when you enter this phase of your life.[111]

Low moods are common among menopausal women and it’s important that you find ways in which you can counter this issue.[112] Lifestyle changes, such as increasing your self-care can help, but you might also want to try using essential oils at home.

Sage essential oil could be your secret weapon. Research published in the US National Library of Medicine suggests using this oil may help menopausal women have fewer feelings of depression.[113]

Participants self-rated their low moods after inhaling sage essential oil as a form of treatment.[114] The results suggest this oil could have antidepressant properties that are effective for women who’re going through menopause.[115]

Takeaway: Essential oils could help menopausal women to stabilize their moods. As always, getting expert medical advice prior to any treatment is important.

How do You Use Essential Oils?

Now that you’re well-versed in the benefits of essential oils, let’s take a look at how you can actually use essential oils.

Believe it or not, there’s more than one way to utilize these oils to reap their rewards. Here are five of the most common methods:

1. Diffuser

Investing in a high-quality essential oil diffuser is one of the easiest ways to get started. Diffusers allow you to use the oils as a form of aromatherapy, releasing their scent into the air so you can inhale it.

While instructions may differ, with most devices you’ll need to add water along with a few drops of your chosen essential oil into the diffuser. Next, put the lid on the machine and turn it on. Simple!

2. Topical

You can use essential oils during a massage by applying them directly onto your skin. Be aware that these oils are very potent! For that reason, you’ll need to mix them with a carrier oil to properly dilute them before you begin.

You should focus your attention on target areas of your body. For instance, if you’re using essential oils for back pain, you may want to massage the oil blend into your back area. Makes sense, right?

Try out different techniques and see what works for you. Note: To make life even easier, you can also purchase pre-diluted roll-on essential oils that you can usually use without a carrier oil.

3. Dry Evaporation

Perhaps one of the most low-cost, low-hassle techniques for using essential oils is dry evaporation. You’ll need a piece of dry material and your essential oils to use this method. Cotton balls (or any piece of clean fabric) generally work well for this technique.

Put a few drops of the oil directly onto the dry material and let it soak in for a moment. Next, you can inhale the oil’s aroma directly from the fabric.

Take care when inhaling and ensure you keep your face a few inches away from the oil. This will prevent you from accidentally getting your nose wet (potentially embarrassing!) or, worse, irritating your skin with the undiluted oil!

4. Steam

The steam method is pretty straightforward. Before you get started, you’ll need a bowl, some hot water, and a towel. Put the water into the bowl and then add a few drops of essential oils to the mix.

Position your head directly over the bowl so you can inhale the vapor. Make sure you don’t put your face too close to the bowl or you could risk burning yourself or hurting your eyes!

Place a towel over your head to keep the steam contained. Easy!

5. Spray

Wondering how to use essential oils as a spray? It couldn’t be easier. To get started, you’ll need a spray bottle and some water. Just mix a few drops of your favorite essential oil with the water in the bottle.

Be sure to put the lid on and shake well before each use. You can then spray the blend in your room so you can get some aromatherapy benefits.

Not the DIY type? Depending on the blend you want, you may be able to buy premade essential oil sprays online!

What Are Carrier Oils?

You may have heard the term “carrier oils” before, but what are they exactly? When it comes to using essential oils directly on your skin or in your bath, you’ll most likely need to dilute them first.

carrier oils for essential oil blends infographic

Essential oils are highly concentrated, which means their potency may not be safe for direct skin contact. Luckily, that’s where carrier oils come into play. Mixing these oils with your essential oils will ensure they’re safe to use for massages and other topical applications.

Some of the best carrier oils are cold-pressed. Examples include sunflower, sweet almond, jojoba, and grapeseed oil. Choosing the right carrier oil for your needs may take some trial and error. However, using any of these oils will help you to dilute your best essential oils more easily.

When you’ve chosen your carrier oil, you’ll need to consider the proportions. The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy boasts a wealth of information when it comes to safely mixing your carrier and essential oils. To figure out the correct dilution rates for your needs, you should look at the association’s guide and follow their instructions.

If the mixture still appears to be too strong, add in a little more of the carrier oil for better (safer!) results.

How do You Dilute Essential Oils?

Next up, let’s talk about how to dilute essential oils. The easiest way to get this right is to mix a carrier oil with the essential oil of your choice. On the other hand, you can also use an essential oil diffuser for dilution too.

Finding the perfect diffuser for your needs doesn’t have to be difficult. Below, we’ll take a look at some of the top essential oil diffusers and how you can use them.

Top Essential Oil Diffusers

InnoGear Diffuser

As the best-selling essential oil diffuser on Amazon, the InnoGear Diffuser is at once stylish and functional. The wood-grain finish means the piece looks attractive in any home — plus, it can keep going for up to eight hours at maximum function!

This essential oil diffuser also includes a 350ml water reservoir and seven colored LED lights.

Ultrasonic Cool Mist Essential Oil Diffuser

Next up, the beautiful Ultrasonic Cool Mist Essential Oil Diffuser. This one sports a chic tree leaf design as well as a sturdy metal outer casing.

This diffuser also has seven different LED light colors with the addition of an auto shut-off protection system.

Having a diffuser that shuts off automatically is especially handy if you plan to diffuse your essential oils at bedtime! You’ll be able to drift off to sleep, smelling the relaxing scents of your oils, without having to worry about manually powering down your equipment.

With a 700ml water tank and its “cool mist” mode, the Asakuki Premium Essential Oil Diffuser is one of the best essential oil diffusers you can get right now.

This somewhat larger device includes seven different LED light colors, auto color cycles, and various color modes. The additional light functions can enhance your aromatherapy experience by further setting the right mood.

The elegant and subtle SmileyDaisy Essential Oil Diffuser is well worth checking out. Its full-water capacity offers more than six hours usage, which should be plenty for most users.

Plus, the sleek and unassuming disk design comes in a variety of stylish finishes.

Tip: Choose an essential oil diffuser that suits your home decor. With so many available, there’s sure to be one that matches your personal style.

Are Essential Oils Safe?

Before you get started with essential oils, you’ll need to consider how safe they are. When you use these oils right — i.e. with a carrier oil or in a diffuser — they shouldn’t be harmful. However, when used incorrectly, the oils can be dangerous to your health.

You should never ingest essential oils. Doing so could lead to serious medical problems and, in extreme cases, death.[116]

Whenever you’re dealing with essential oils, it’s important that you take the time to read the instructions on the labels and use them correctly.

dogs and cat on floor at home

Are They Safe for Pets?

Do you have pets at home? You might want to take extra precautions when using essential oils. Information from the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) suggests that these oils could be harmful to both cats and dogs.

The report states that essential oils may be dangerous if the animal touches them. What’s more, should your pet accidentally ingest the oils, they may experience vomiting, diarrhea, and even depression.

Luckily, this doesn’t mean you can’t use essential oils at all. The ASPCA suggests using an essential oil diffuser in a secured area of your home, i.e. one that your pet cannot access. That way, you can make sure your fur baby doesn’t come into contact with the oils or their vapor.

For more information on this issue, speak to a registered vet.

children playing with blocks

Are They Safe for Kids?

If you’re using diluted essential oils in a diffuser, there’s no reason they should be harmful to children (unless your child has an ingredient-specific allergy). However, should your child ingest these oils, that can lead to serious health problems.

One report, published in the US National Library of Medicine, concluded that essential oils can be harmful and even life-threatening to children when ingested.[117] These oils have been known to cause seizures and — in one case — death in children.[118]

If you have children and you’re using essential oils, it’s vital that you take extra care. Beware of leaving bottles in reach of young kids and always make sure you supervise your children.

It’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to this issue!

essential oils safety infographic

Where Are Essential Oils Sold?

Finding the best essential oils can be super easy! If you want to start reaping essential oil benefits, you don’t need to look far. You can buy these oils online, at health stores, and even in some chain stores.

Due to their increasing mainstream popularity, essential oils are more accessible than ever before. Start shopping now.

Want to know which essential oils are truly essential? Then you’ll want to get The Incredible Power of Essential Oils hardcover book.

Free ultimate beginner's guide - WellMe

Complete List of Essential Oils

Ready to start using essential oils for your health? There’s no time like the present!

Getting to know the names of these oils is a smart place to begin. With that in mind, here’s a complete list of the essential oils you need to know about:

  • Angelica root
  • Basil
  • Bay
  • Bergamot
  • Birch sweet
  • Black pepper
  • Cajeput
  • Cardamom
  • Carrot seed
  • Cedarwood
  • Chamomile German
  • Chamomile Roman
  • Cinnamon leaf
  • Citronella
  • Clary sage
  • Clove bud
  • Coffee
  • Copaiba
  • Coriander seed
  • Cypress dill
  • Eucalyptus citriodora
  • Eucalyptus
  • Eucalyptus radiata
  • Fennel sweet
  • Fir needle
  • Hyssop
  • Immortelle
  • Jasmine
  • Juniper berry
  • Lavandin
  • Lavender
  • Lemon
  • Lemongrass
  • Lime
  • Linden blossom
  • Mandarin
  • Marjoram
  • May chang
  • Melissa
  • Myrrh
  • Myrtle
  • Neroli
  • Niaouli
  • Orange
  • Oregano
  • Palmarosa
  • Patchouli
  • Peppermint
  • Petitgrain
  • Pine needle
  • Ravensara
  • Rose
  • Rosemary
  • Sandalwood
  • Spearmint
  • Tangerine
  • Tea tree
  • Thyme
  • Thyme wild
  • Vanilla
  • Vetiver
  • Ylang-ylang
  • Ylang-ylang extract

Get Started Today!

This insightful guide has given you a baseline knowledge of essential oils and how you can use them in your everyday life.

As we’ve covered, there are many benefits to gain from these oils — including a myriad of ways they may support your physical and mental wellness. Armed with this vital knowledge, you can confidently begin your journey toward better health.

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