Lavender is an incredibly versatile oil that soothes both physically and mentally.
Lavender is the most widely used essential oil in the world. Its calming aroma is easily recognizable, and it is used in many cultures to improve personal health and foster a peaceful state of mind. Lavender is made from the purple flowers of the lavender plant, grown in Mediterranean climates. It takes over 60 pounds of flowers to create just 16 ounces of therapeutic grade lavender oil.
Here are some ways in which to use this incredibly versatile oil. You can do so aromatically (using an essential oil diffuser, available at health food stores or holistic medicine providers) or topically (applying the essential to your body by means of a carrier oil).
Promote better sleep
In need of some quality sleep? Lavender has a well-known reputation to promote a good night of sleep. Its relaxing properties are perfect for helping to reduce feelings of stress after a long day and help you drift into dreamland.
Diffusing Lavender in your bedroom for about 30 minutes is a great way to incorporate Lavender into your nighttime routine. Or, simply add a few drops to a cotton ball and place near your pillow. Either way, arming your bedside table with Lavender is a great idea for a good night’s sleep!
Help yourself relax
Lavender can reduce stress and anxiety and soothe intense emotions. Apply a drop of pure oil to your neck, wrists, and chest, in place of perfume or cologne. Diffuse throughout a room, or put a drop on a clay pendant that hangs around your neck.
It is a natural air freshener
Is your house not smelling as fresh as you want it to be? Lavender is a fantastic way to freshen up even the stinkiest of places. Diffuse to help obliterate the stink of a stale room, or add a few drops to a cotton ball and place where stinky smells may linger.
Think – a musty closet, under the kitchen sink, a gym bag – you name it! Lavender’s air purifying properties also make this a great choice if you have a case of the “ickies” going around the house and want to freshen up the air.
It’s great for headache relief
Headaches are a great way to ruin, well, everything. No matter what you’re up to, a throbbing head makes every task a little more unpleasant. Thankfully, with its calming and sedative effects, Lavender can provide wonderful relief if you are experiencing head and neck tension.
It is also known to reduce stress and helps relieve feelings of restlessness, which are often contributors to a headache. One placebo-controlled clinical trial found that a majority of participants responded positively to inhaling Lavender when in the midst of a headache, and it was also found to help soothe and lessen the more severe migraine headache symptoms.
Reduce allergic reactions
Lavender has a powerful antihistamine effect, especially when used together with lemon and peppermint. Inhaling lavender oil can relieve symptoms of hay fever and allergies to cats, dogs, dust, etc. I recommend the following routine:
“Drop a drop in my hand and dab a bit under my nose, with my index finger. Then I rub some in a very large circle around my eyes, keeping the oil above my eyebrow and under my cheekbone to stop it getting into my eye. I find this really effective for when eyes are swollen and itchy. Then I rub my hands together and cup them over my face and take a deep inhalation several times. Repeat as soon as the sneezing starts again. This could be in 20 minutes to several hours.”
These recommendations do not replace a physician’s care. Please see your doctor if you have any health concerns.