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7 Beneficial Essential Oils and How to Use Them

If you read natural health news and blogs from time to time, you’ve undoubtedly read about the healing benefits of essential oils. However, there are so many different types of essential oils, each with its own uses and promises, that all those tiny bottles can be very overwhelming. To help you navigate the world of essential oils in a simple and no-nonsense way, here are some of the most beneficial ones to try and how to use them.

Photo credit: Cushy Spa via Flickr

  1. Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender is probably the most commonly used essential oil in Western culture. Lavender has been widely studied for its calming and soothing benefits to the body and mind. This is a great essential oil to start with if you just want to try one because the scent is very pleasant, and the oil has anti-anxiety, anti-inflammatory, anesthetic, and immune-boosting properties. Lavender is also used for insect bites, sunburns and to promote restful sleep.

  1. Lemongrass Essential Oil

Lemongrass is a tropical plant that is native to India and Sri Lanka, and it’s commonly used as an essential oil around the world. It is used for gastrointestinal discomfort, fever, and even boosting mood with its energetic scent. This oil also has antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial properties, and anti-fungal properties, which is why it’s a common ingredient in dandruff scalp treatments.

  1. Tea Tree Essential Oil

Tea tree oil is unique because of its properties used to heal wounds and skin ailments, as well as cold and flu symptoms. This essential oil has antiviral and anti-inflammatory components and is widely used to treat everything from acne to skin tags, psoriasis, influenza, and as a natural insect repellent.

  1. Eucalyptus Essential Oil

If you’ve ever taken a walk through a eucalyptus forest, then you know how fragrant this plant can really be. Many people compare the scent of eucalyptus essential oil to Vicks Vapor Rub, but that fresh and minty scent is great for freshening up a room. It is also used to treat inflammation, boost the immune system, and to open up clogged sinuses.

  1. Orange Essential Oil

Orange essential oil is the oil of happiness and good moods. This oil has a sweet smell that is mood-boosting and energy-boosting too. Diffuse some of this oil into your home first thing in the morning for a good start to the day. Orange oil is also used as a wound disinfectant and for cold and flu prevention.

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  1. Peppermint Essential Oil

Peppermint is a scent often reserved for tooth care and the winter holiday season, but you can reap the benefits of peppermint all throughout the year with essential oils. This is a good oil to have on hand if you suffer from headaches or just want to improve your memory and concentration. Peppermint is great for keeping you awake and for aching muscles too. Beauty products, such as lip balms and lotions, often utilize natural peppermint oils.

  1. Rosemary Essential Oil

Rosemary is commonly used in recipes that you eat, but it is also an herb that works great as an essential oil. Rosemary stimulates the body and promotes a healthy heart, lungs, and brain. It is also known to help decrease stress, promote healthy hair, and improve blood circulation.

How to Use Essential Oils

There are few different ways to use essential oils, and some are easier than others. If you invest in a diffuser that allows you to add a few drops of oil to water, you can enjoy various scents and benefits every time you put a new mixture into it. It’s also easy to simply add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to a warm bath. A fun way to experience essential oils on-the-go is to buy a bracelet made with gemstones and lava rocks, which soak up and naturally diffuse oil. With a roll-on applicator, you can apply oil to the lava rock beads to enjoy throughout the day.

But as a general rule, avoid placing essential oils directly onto your skin unless they are diluted in a carrier oil or until you’ve tested the oil on a patch of healthy skin to ensure there are no adverse reactions. Common carrier oils to mix these essential oils with are coconut oil and almond oil.

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