The benefits of lavender have been accepted and used for centuries. More recently, studies have confirmed what history already knew: lavender is a pretty cool plant. But it can be daunting if you don’t know how to use lavender essential oil. So, here are 10 ways to use lavender oil.
Lavender essential oil is generally deemed safe for use on skin; however, it may cause irritation for those with sensitive skin. For best practices, dilute pure lavender oil with a small amount of a carrier oil. This can be jojoba oil, olive oil, coconut oil, even some vegetable oils! Our blend for our roller bottle contains 70% pure lavender essential oil, 30% carrier oil.
1. Reduce Stress
Of course this one has to be first on the list! It is common knowledge that the scent of lavender can have a calming effect on people. This has also been backed up by studies, including one (led by Woelk and Schläfke) that found that lavender has similar effects on people as the drug lorazepam, or Ativan by its brand name (1).
2. Focus agent
In a 2015 study conducted by Shimizu et al, the effects of lavender essential oil were tested for sustained attention. The group who enjoyed the influence of lavender essential oil “sustained attention during prolonged and exigent exercises” (1) (2). Lavender was also more effective than other, more stimulating scents. A scent that excites and stimulates can have an adverse effect, as the subject has too much alertness.
3. Insect Repellent
Lavender is a natural insect repellent! It deters mosquitoes and other unpleasant pests. To take advantage of this quality, you can have lavender plants around your home, keep lavender by windows, or spray lavender oil around the area you want to be protected (3).
4. Pain relief
Lavender has been found to reduce headache pain, menstrual cramps, carpal tunnel, arthritis pain, sore muscles, and more (4) (2). Though you can apply a few drops topically to the affected area, you can also make an oil blend with carrier oils, add some drops to your bath, or pair with a hot compress.
There is some discussion about what makes lavender’s anti-inflammatory properties most potent. This study found that lavender essential oil made from lavender harvested in its early stages of its blooming can be anti-inflammatory (5). This quality of lavender pairs extremely well with its pain relief effects, and works in tandem to improve ailments.
6. Sleep aid
If something can help reduce stress, it follows that it also helps with falling asleep. Put a few drops of lavender oil on top of your pillow at night, or use a diffuser to disperse the scent. That lowered heart rate will have you off to dream land in no time. Keep in mind that a regular bedtime routine can improve sleep hygiene–the more you repeat this practice, the more effective it becomes (4).
7. Hair care
Lavender essential oil has also been found to stimulate hair growth. It works best when applied to the scalp–this is not for the hair that’s already growing! To take advantage of these properties, create an oil blend for use on your head, or add a few drops of lavender essential oil to your current hair products. You can also combine lavender oil with rosemary oil, black castor oil, or tea tree oil to create an even more potent hair serum (3).
8. Memory aid
Don’t pull out the lavender for your next quiz just yet! Though pilot trials have found that inhaling the scent of lavender can improve working memory during stressful situations, the scent of lavender actually reduces working memory while under normal circumstances. So, put it away for Scrabble, but do pull it out the next time you need to put some thought into a solution for a pervasive problem (4) (7).
9. Cleaning agent
Is this any surprise, with lavender as an impressive antibacterial and antiseptic agent? Pairing lavender essential oil with a few DIY house cleaning recipes, including an all-purpose surface cleaner, a carpet deodorizer, or a moderate cleaning scrub. Check out this article by HelloNest for these DIY house cleaning recipes.
Lavender can help with a lot of problems… including your body odor! First and foremost, lavender smells nice. Take advantage of this by creating an oil blend and applying it to your skin, or just buy one of our nice cosmetic roller bottles. Or, if you’re curious about the different signatures of lavender essential oils, you can try out our Riverina Thomas essential oil, or our Miss Katherine essential oil.
With so many ways to use lavender essential oil, this wondrous plant could end up following you around all day. Start with a de-stressing sniff, end with a sleepy time diffuser. This article should not be taken as medical advice, and should never supersede the advice of medical professionals. But if people across history agree, you know it has to be good.