I feel compelled to make a list of all the ways we use essential oils in our house currently (or have used them in the past). I love sharing my experiences with oils with my friends and family and hope that this list will educate you, if even the slightest bit. I didn’t have all of these oils on hand in the beginning. I started building a stash over time and before long I had found the “staples” to my collection that we most frequently use and share. Perhaps something on this list will be useful to you and your family. There really are a lot of random lifestyle changes we have made by replacing common household products on our shelves with these little brown bottles.
In no particular order, in fact I will start how my day started. Everly was burning up…
- High Body Temperature – I rubbed Peppermint oil down her spine every half an hour, basically all day long. Her temperature never went over 101 and she remained comfortable for the most part throughout the day. I put 10 drops in a roller bottle and filled it to the top with fractionated coconut oil. Any carrier oil will do, it doesn’t necessarily have to be this kind.
- Teething – I rub Clove Bud oil directly on the gums. I put 10-15 drops in a roller bottle and top it off with fractionated coconut oil. I put a little bit on my (clean) finger and rub it directly on Everly’s gums. She loves it, and it keeps her gums from itching and driving her nuts.
- Immune Boost – during the season when anyone in my house is sick (feeling unwell and clammy, vomiting, night sweats) I rub everyone down with a mix I can’t live without. This is 7-10 drops each Lemon, Oregano, On Guard ( Protective Blend), Frankincense and Melaleuca (Tea Tree Oil), topped off with fractionated coconut oil. Each of these oils has different properties that make it useful and although this blend doesn’t smell the best, we live by it during sick periods and generally speaking to keep everyone well. I also put 3-4 drops of On Guard in a veggie cap (basically I make my own supplement) and take it daily to help keep my immune system strong. I’ve only been doing this for about 10 days and have felt 100% aside from a migraine yesterday.
- Head/Neck tension – depending on the kind of head pain I am having will determine which oil I grab. Yesterday’s head tension was a whopper and I tried several things before I got it right. First I grabbed Past Tense, a blend that is a mix of peppermint, lavender, wintergreen, chamomile and lots of other yummy smelling plants. I carry this in my purse and use it frequently; I put a dab on my temples and behind my ears, sometimes on the back of the neck, too. It really all just depends on where my head tension is coming from. Next I grabbed Deep Blue (a blend that acts similarly to Icy Hot or Ben Gay — you get a yummy cold and then warm sensation). When this didn’t offer much relief, I put a drop of Frankincense on my thumb and pressed it in the roof of my mouth. This usually works all of the time for and did offer some relief for a little while. The final straw yesterday was Clary Calm, a blend that is filled with Clary Sage (my favorite), lavender and bergamot. This blend is fantastic for menopause, period cramps and unbeknownst to me until yesterday MIGRAINES. I slathered it across the back of my neck and on my forehead, and finally found relief after almost 2 hours of pacing around my house pulling my own hair, throwing up and wondering how on Earth I would survive with a 14-month-old needing me, too! Thankfully, after essential oils combined with a dark room, a warm therapeutic pillow and a little peace and quiet, my head tension went away.
- Mood/Aromatherapy – this one really does depend on who has what going on. Liquid Xanax is currently the front-runner around here. It’s equal parts Balance (Grounding blend) and Serenity (Calming blend) , topped off with fractionated coconut oil. When Sadler (age 4 1/2) is being a jerk, I rub this on the back of her neck and put a dab on each wrist. It smells so good that I tell her it’s perfume. Then I usually put some on myself. We all use this one, a lot. Wild Orange is a favorite also for just calming down if I’m feeling stressed or just need “to take a chill pill”. Literally opening the cap, closing my eyes and taking a big whiff will calm me down every time. This one is nice to diffuse when you work with a bunch of difficult people, it generally will make everyone pretty happy (and if no one else, it will make YOU happy as it blows in your face as you sit at your desk).
- Seasonal Threats – Lavender, Lemon and Peppermint combined with fractionated coconut oil in a roller bottle are great to have on hand for seasonal allergies, bug bites and any other time when you would tend to reach for an antihistamine. Admittedly, my husband still believes that his over-the-counter allergy pill works best for him, but if you put these three oils in a veggie cap and take one daily it will do the same thing without all of the harmful side effects of a man-made pill. But we are programmed to reach for pills and it takes a village to re-program ourselves and our loved ones.
- Seasonal “Blues” – I tend to feel some blues in the colder months and last year was the first time I tried this. I put equal parts Wild Orange, Frankincense and Lavender in a roller bottle and applied it to my wrists and the back of my neck. It smelled so yummy and really made a difference. I shared this one with co-workers and they fell in love with it, too.
- Deodorant – I am slowly but surely learning how harmful deodorant can be to our bodies and sweating in the armpit area is an unfortunate thing for me. I’ve been blending equal parts Patchouli and Ginger in a roller bottle and applying it to my pits in the mornings rather than use deodorant — I call it “Patchouli Pits”. It keeps me from sweating and smells very nice (I realize Patchouli is an acquired smell to love, and it happens to be on my favorites list these days. Smells like a dirty hippie and I can’t get enough of it.)
- Congestion – Breathe (Respiratory blend) is one that we use religiously. It is a blend with Eucalyptus, Peppermint, Cardamom and Lemon that will legit open your nasal passage the second you inhale it. This is our go to when anyone is snotty, has a cough or showing signs of a cold. I use this one straight from the bottle and don’t always dilute it (especially on myself and Reid). I apply it to the chest, down the spine, bottoms of the feet, under the nose…and I diffuse it almost every single night in our bedrooms. It’s great for people who snore and makes your bedroom smell nice while you’re sleeping.
- Rest/Relaxation – diffusing at bedtime is a great way to increase your chances of getting a restful night’s sleep. We have a diffuser in each bedroom and may not always diffuse the same things in each room. Almost all the time, I diffuse Serenity at bedtime. It’s a blend with Lavender, Ylang Ylang, Vetiver, Vanilla and Cedarwood (it’s the same blend that goes in Liquid Xanax). It has such a great calming effect and is even great to diffuse in rooms where your pet sleeps. I also have a roller bottle of Serenity, about 15 drops, topped off with fractionated coconut oil. I use this on Everly at nap time and will use it myself if I feel a restless night of sleep ahead. I’ve given this blend to friends to use during times of sleepless nights and they have also reported better nights’ sleep.
- Muscle Aches – if Reid has a back ache or I am sore after hot yoga, I will grab Deep Blue. I have a bottle of this oil, and it also comes in a lotion that has a full bottle of the oil in it already. It’s just easier to apply if you want to cover a larger surface area, but both are good to have on hand. Similar to Ben Gay or Icy Hot, once you put this stuff on you feel a cold sensation, followed by a really warm one. It feels very nice and offers immediate relief. I’ve recommended this product to friends who Cross Fit and they swear by it. I also know some firemen who use it and think it’s good stuff for muscle soreness.
- Germs/Unwanted Pathogens – when I was pregnant with Everly, I developed a very temperamental climate downstairs. I started using Melaleuca in the shower, just a drop on my wash cloth before I washed my lady parts, and it kept me free from anymore nasty yeasties. (Sorry if TMI – you will always run that risk reading my blog). Doing this daily became more of a preventative measure rather than treatment and I have told several friends about the benefits of this one.
- Cooking – since essential oils come from plants, I was pleasantly surprised to learn all of the different oils that you can purchase to use when cooking. These are a few we have cooked with before or that I have on hand to cook with when I need that ingredient: Dill, Cumin, Oregano, Ginger, Lemon and Lime. We have even used Ginger to spice up some “white liquor” we were gifted; added a few strawberries to the jar with just about 5 drops of Ginger essential oil…tasty stuff.
- Splinter Removal – Sadler got a splinter in her foot over the summer. I immediately went on Pinterest just to satisfy my curiosity and searched for an essential oil to remove a splinter. Turns out, you can make a paste with baking soda and Lavender essential oil that will draw out/dissolve a splinter. I tried this, and it worked! I mixed about a thimble-full of baking soda with 3 drops of lavender and used my finger to spread it over the splinter, put a Band-aid on it and the next morning it was gone! Granted, this was not a very big splinter and I realize we might not have been so lucky if the splinter were a little worse, but thankfully this did the trick for us when we needed it. I knew better than try to use tweezers (or even my finger) to pluck that thing out of her foot. That would have sent her straight over the edge and I pick my battles 😉
- Cuts/Scrapes – my littlest is crawling and pulling up on anything that she can get her hands on and has bumped her head a time or two in recent weeks. The most recent incident left about an inch long scrape on her head that did not bleed, but the skin was cracked. I put a drop of Frankincense on it immediately when it happened and have done so every day since. It quickly scabbed up and the scab has almost fallen off completely; you can barely see the spot and I feel pretty good about it disappearing completely in just a few more days if I keep doing this. On Guard is also great to use when you have a fresh scrape, simply to keep the risk of infection at bay.
- Skin Care – I have not always had a good skin care regimen. In fact, I am guilty of going to bed without washing my face on a nightly basis – unless I shower at night, which happens but isn’t that common. My point is, I haven’t always done the best job at taking care of my face. I just turned 35 earlier this year so there isn’t a better time to start taking care of myself, right?! Frankincense is great for wrinkles. You can put a drop directly into whatever product you have on hand, or you can use dilute it with a carrier oil and apply it directly to your neck, forehead, around your mouth – any part of your skin that you want to take care of, just careful not to get it in your eyes. (One thing to note about using essential oils, if you get them in your eyes remember: oil and water do not mix. You will naturally go to water for rinsing out whatever oil you get in your eyes but will definitely want to grab your carrier oil instead. Using another oil will assist the oil that’s in your eye with leaving your eye as quickly as possible.) Rose is also good for your skin and I have used it personally. There are other oils that greatly benefit your skin that I have not tried personally. However, I do use the anti-aging skincare line that the company sells and have found it to be pretty amazing stuff.
- Breath Freshener – a drop of Peppermint oil on your tongue is a great way to freshen your warm, afternoon mouth. It’s great to do after you’ve had too much coffee, or even when you need just a little afternoon pick-me-up. I’m thankful that these come in a nifty beadlet form; basically a drop of Peppermint essential oil inside a little tiny capsule like a breath mint that you just pop between your teeth – it’s powerful stuff and really will wake you up! I’ve heard that others use Peppermint on the tongue for allergies. It makes sense to me, considering that an effective blend I’ve been using personally and mentioned earlier has Peppermint in it. These little beadlets are just easier to take, compared to turning a bottle of peppermint up in your mouth (which is totally doable, by the way).
- Room/Air Freshener – diffusing essential oils has really become by standby when the house stinks. I use a great blend called Purify (Cleansing blend) that is fresh like clean linens; this one has been handy since we got the new dog 😉 Lemon and Lime are also great odor neutralizers. My hubby loves the smell of lemongrass, so we tend to diffuse that
- Nausea/Vomiting – whenever I have a tummy ache or someone is puking God forbid, I always grab the Digestive blend — its blended with Ginger, Peppermint, Fennel, Coriander and Fennel (it smells very similar to licorice). I rub it clockwise around the belly button (I don’t recall why I do it this way but it has something to do with the direction in which our digestive tracks flow).
- Mosquito Repellant – hands down best bug spray I have ever used. TerraShield (Outdoor blend) combines Lemon, Eucalyptus, Ylang Ylang, Vanilla and other essential oils and it doesn’t smell nearly as awful as your common bug spray. This comes in a 15ml bottle or a pre-mixed spray bottle that use for simplicity sake.
- Cleaning – I make my own cleaning supplies generally and have been for a couple of years now. A quick and easy recipe: equal parts white vinegar and hot water with 10-20 drops of whatever essential oil I am in the mood for: Wild Orange, Lemon, On Guard, Purify, Lavender, Lemongrass…I also love making my own vacuum powder by using an empty glass jar. I poked some holes in the lid to the jar, filled it about 3/4 full with baking soda and 20 drops of any of the oils mentioned above. I sprinkle this on the rugs and couch about 15 minutes prior to vacuuming — it really does help to deodorize in my house at least! I make my own furniture polish with equal parts olive oil and vinegar and 15 drops each Wild Orange and Lemon. I also make an all-purpose cleaner with borax, washing powder, blue Dawn dish soap, white vinegar, hot water and 15 drops of your favorite essential oil. All of these items are safe for my kids and pets, I know exactly what is in them and they actually do work to clean.
Feel free to leave your thoughts and ideas in the comments! Happy oiling!