Perhaps the most well known and versatile of all the essential oils, and for good reason – Lavender has been used for thousands of years for its healing, antiseptic and sedative properties.
Lavender oil likely sparked modern interest in therapeutic essential oils after the ‘father of aromatherapy’, René-Maurice Gattefossé, attributed the healing of his hand from gas gangrene to Lavender. He went on to successfully use it in on wounded soldiers in the First World War.
Lavender has a scent that’s a wonderful blend of fresh, floral, clean, and calm. This dynamic aroma that has made the flower a classic for perfumes, soaps, fresheners, and beauty products.
Distilled from the plant Lavandula angustifolia, the oil promotes relaxation and believed to treat anxiety, fungal infections, allergies, depression, insomnia, eczema, nausea, and menstrual cramps.
While there’s currently a lack of large-scale clinical trials testing lavender’s effects on people with anxiety, a number of studies show that the oil may offer some anti-anxiety benefits.
Several studies have shown lavender essential oil may help promote sleep and fight insomnia.
Possible Side Effects
Lavender essential oil may cause skin irritation or an allergic reaction in some individuals. If you experience nausea, vomiting, or a headache after using lavender, discontinue use immediately.
Because consuming lavender essential oil can have toxic effects, this remedy should not be ingested unless under the supervision of a medical professional.
Dosage and Preparation
There is no recommended daily allowance for lavender essential oil. According to the principles of aromatherapy, breathing in the scent of lavender essential oil or applying lavender essential oil to the skin transmits messages to the limbic system, a brain region known to influence the nervous system and help regulate emotion.
One popular approach involves combining lavender oil with a carrier oil (such as jojoba or sweet almond). Once blended with a carrier oil, lavender essential oil can be massaged into your skin or added to your bath.
You can also sprinkle a few drops of lavender essential oil onto a cloth or tissue and inhale its aroma, or add the oil to an aromatherapy diffuser or vaporizer.
When buying pure lavender essential oil, check the label for its Latin name, Lavandula angustifolia. No other oils or ingredients should be listed. If you see another oil, such as fractionated coconut oil, jojoba oil, or sweet almond oil, the lavender is diluted and should not be used in a diffuser.
Essential oils should be packaged in a dark amber or cobalt bottle and stored out of sunlight.
• Add a few drops to lotions, shampoos, and skin care products for a classic aroma and more youthful complexion.
• Add 10 drops of Lavender and 1 cup of Epsom salt to a bath to create a relaxing environment.
• Unwind in the evening with a calming, Lavender-infused neck or back massage.
• Use Lavender as part of a bedtime routine by rubbing it on the bottoms of your feet or diffusing it next to your bed.
• Create a DIY room freshener with Lavender or diffuse it to help banish stale odours.
• Use Lavender essential oil to remove sticky residue and permanent marker stains from solid surfaces.
• Add 5-10 drops of Lavender essential oil to a small, slightly damp washcloth. Place it in the dryer while drying towels for a clean, fresh aroma.
• Diffuse Lavender in your bathroom to make your bathroom smell fresh.
• Put 3-5 drops of Lavender oil in each of your shoes to keep them smelling fresh. If your shoes have plastic or leather soles, put the oil onto a cotton ball and leave it overnight.
• Keep your carpet or rug smelling fresh with Lavender essential oil added to baking soda. Sprinkle the mixture into the carpet, let it sit for at least 15 minutes, and then vacuum it up.
• Add to food and drink recipes for a beautiful floral taste.