We have all been to a spa at least once in our lives. It might have been to destress or to detoxify, but no matter which spa we might have gone to, the intoxicating aroma of the oils would be something to remember when we go back to our mundane daily existence. Those are essential oils we can all use in the comfort of our own homes instead of shelling out big bucks for a fancy treatment. So what are essential oils, and how can we make our lives better by incorporating them in our daily routine?
Essential oils have been in existence for centuries and have been used through the ages in various cultures for their health and medicinal benefits. While the most common use is in aromatherapy, essential oils can be used in personalized beauty care products, for natural medicinal treatments and shockingly, even in cleaning one’s house. These highly concentrated oils are extracted from different parts of plants (bark, roots, flowers, leaves, peels, and resins) by distillation, which separates the oil and water-based components. The high concentration of aromatic compounds is the reason why these volatile aromatic oils are referred to as Aromatherapy oils. Even one drop is highly potent.
Following are a few of the essential oils that are nothing if not essential for our daily existence:
- Lemon Oil: The most commonly found essential oil, it can be found in almost all products that scream out with their citrusy nature as we walk down the grocery aisle. Lemon has been synonymous with freshness and cleanliness for as long as anyone can remember. Like its nature, the oil acts as a strong astringent, antiseptic, and antibacterial agent. A diluted version can be used for daily skin care routine as it helps in reducing wrinkles and increasing circulation and in turn, toning the skin. The oil is also known to alleviate one’s moods due to its antidepressant nature.
- Cinnamon Oil: The sweeter sibling of Lemon oil is derived from the bark and leaves of Cinnamon tree, and its usage dates back to the Ancient Egyptian scrolls, making it one of history’s oldest among essential oils. While in ancient times, this was highly expensive and available only for the super-rich, it’s no longer an exotic fantasy for the common man. The most common usage is to clear chest colds, but due to its analgesic and antispasmodic nature, it soothes muscle and body aches.
- Clary Sage Oil: Extracted from a plant that grows throughout the year in the Mediterranean areas, this oil has major usage in skin care products due to their antiseptic nature. The sweet-smelling oil also has the ability to regulate hormones and alleviating menstrual cramps and pain if massaged properly.
- Tea Tree Oil: Grown naturally and in abundance in Australia, this oil can treat common cold and skin problems along with moderating dandruff and also has the ability to slow tumor growth (as seen in mice.) It comes as an effective acne treatment and prevents excessive drying of the skin.
- Rosemary Oil: This is a magic herb oil that can increase the shelf life of a product and is commonly found in natural skin products. More of a stimulant, this oil helps in boosting immunity along with increased heart rate and respiratory rate. The smell is known to decrease cortisol (stress hormone) levels and mixed with eucalyptus can make any room smell like a forest.
- Eucalyptus Oil: The smell of this oil is very distinctive and uber strong. Along with being a good air freshener and bug repellent, it also helps in boosting immunity.
And last but not least: Lavender Oil. This is a pretty versatile product and has multiple uses. It’s a powerhouse essential oil packed with large proportions of camphor, eucalyptol, linalyl acetate, and linalool. It’s best used in a diluted form. Let’s have a look at some of its usages of this young living lavender extracted from Lavendula officinalis :
- It’s a natural antioxidant and prevents free radicals from shutting down the immune system and helps in healing cuts and burns.
- A stress-reliever, this oil helps in improving mood and treating headache and insomnia.
- Helps in treating neurological diseases and improving brain function.
- It’s also known to reduce hair loss and improve various skin conditions.
- It has been known to reverse diabetes if applied topically to the neck and chest.
So bring the aroma of these oils into your life and rejuvenate yourself daily.