The holistic nature of aromatherapy creates a happy medium in life. Now more than ever, healthcare professionals are suggesting essential oils for healing and others are turning to them to connect deeper with self-care practices. If you are aiming to boost aromatherapy studies or involve plant medicine into your daily routine, look no more. Want to finally take care of skin problems? Reduce stress? Delete mucus from the lungs? Read on for the fun facts of 10 must-have essential oils that make the best home based apothecary!
An oil with a super long history, roman chamomile was a known disinfectant and antiseptic during World War II. Its odor is strong and possesses an apple like aroma, which explains its past names from ancient Greece and Spain, and is a very vulnerary, nervine, and anti-inflammatory that soothes the nervous system. While typically noted safe, patch test on those who are sensitive to ragweed, which is included in the same botanical family. With the ability to calm the mind, grab roman chamomile when feeling overly active, misunderstood, or angry.
2. Clary Sage
Often called ‘clear eye’ due to the seeds’ power to healing eye infections, clary sage has a nutty, earthy, and natural scent that is very soothing. In fact, it’s often 20% linalool, which is very sedating. Clary sage is one of the most powerful muscle relaxers, and is used to conquer spasms. It aids in help for the reproductive and endocrine systems—balancing hormones and supporting PMS and menstrual cycle.
All the way from Australia, aboriginals call it ‘malee.’ The odor is camphor and balsamic- like, and should be used with extreme caution around children and elderly due to its high 1,8 cineole oxide composition. It’s a first go to for decongestion and anti bacterial.
Favored since ancient times, Fennel was traditionally used to promote long living and protect against spirits: the evil ones. Its licorice-like odor aids itself to digestive healing. It’s the best oil for indigestion, gas, constipation, and general colitis. Distilled from the seed.
The name, frankincense, originates from French meaning ‘pure incense.’ Once considered more valuable than gold, this woody aroma was mostly used in religious rituals and offerings. An all-around healer, frankincense is a spiritual oil that touches with higherpower. Additionally, it can be useful for those prone to illness.
Lavender is the heart of essential oils. There are about 20 species of lavender and they all navigated in the Mediterranean. During the middle ages, Lavender was used to battle the plague and has been traditionally used to relieve headaches and aid in sleeping. Many aromatherapists assert that there is no health condition for which lavender would not provide some relief—it helps nearly every symptom with some kind of relief. Perhaps the most notably, it relieves inflammatory conditions.
Cold pressed from the peel of the fruit believed to have originated in Asia, it is a regarded antiseptic, and mood enhancer. Historically, lemon was a purifying agent, still considered today. Its sharp citrus scent snaps your senses into auto-focus. A potentially photo-toxic oil, avoid direct sunlight and be cautious when using it in baths as it may irritate the skin without proper use. A must have oil for detoxing and stimulating circulation in the body, lemon has also been shown to reduce vomiting.
Noted as ‘golden apples’ in Greek mythology, oranges were a treat for the well-to-do. The cleansing, citrus aroma leaves one feeling happy and cheerful. Like many citrus essential oils, it’s cold pressed from the fruit’s rind, but it is not photo-toxic and is considered a non-irritant. A must for handling depression, it elevates all spirit. Interestingly, just inhaling has been shown to increase comfort and relaxation.
Usually distilled from dried leaves, patchouli is an oil that has been used in Chinese, Ayurvedic, and Greek medicine. Its strong, musty scent lends itself well as an insect repellant. It’s calm nature is helpful for those struggling with detachment, and can help focus oneself to re-connect with nature.
10. Tea Tree
Like eucalyptus, tea tree is from Australia where it was traditionally used in indigenous medicine to heal skin infections. It’s balsamic scent calms respiratory ailments and is gentle enough to use purely in small amounts on healthy, adult skin not children. It’s a go to oil thanks to its immune enhancing properties as an anti-bacterial.