Aromatherapy has been getting a lot of buzz lately. People are turning towards natural sources of transforming the spaces they live in. A few pieces of research suggest that aromatherapy can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression, improve quality of sleep, and reduce overall levels of stress. If you are searching for ways to improve your health and calm the mind and body, this article is for you. It discusses how aromatherapy works and the best essential oils that tend to perform most effectively.

Aromatherapy – 15 Best Smelling & Effective Essential Oils

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Aromatherapy has been getting a lot of buzz lately. People are turning towards natural sources of transforming the spaces they live in. A few pieces of research suggest that aromatherapy can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression, improve quality of sleep, and reduce overall levels of stress. If you are searching for ways to improve your health and calm the mind and body, this article is for you. It discusses how aromatherapy works and the best essential oils that tend to perform most effectively.

Aromatherapy - Essential Oils

The natural compounds extracted from plants have been known to promote health and well-being as long as you use them safely. The base of aromatherapy is essential oils. Amazingly, essential oils have been in use for medicinal purposes for nearly 6000 years. These oils can be used alone or blended to make different aromas and effects.

Essential oils are known to have antimicrobial and antioxidant properties amongst other interesting effects like nematicidal (being able to kill nematodes), antifungal, antiviral, and insecticidal (destroying or controlling insects). However, it’s important to understand that even “natural products” have chemicals in them and they can be hazardous if not used in a prescribed way.

How Aromatherapy Work:

As the name suggests, aromatherapy is the practice of using essential oils either directly or via a medium like candles and burners. It is normally used through the process of inhalation or sometimes as a topical application. Let’s discuss each so that you can find out which one may work better for you.


The oil molecules evaporate into the air using a diffuser, burner, candles, or sprays. When inhaled, these molecules travel from the olfactory nerves (sensory nerves that convey the sense of smell) straight to the amygdala (the part that processes emotions) in the brain and other body parts like the lungs, mouth, and nose.

Inhaling the essential oils (in a small and controlled quantity) can help with disinfection, decongestant, and multiple psychological and environmental benefits. It also affects the Limbic System in our brain, linked with the heart rate, breathing, memory, stress, hormone balance, and emotions.

Topical Application

This application surrounds applying the diluted and blended essential oils to the skin either by itself or blended with other products. Essential oils are too pungent to be applied on their own. In most cases, an ounce of oil carrier is added to dilute a few drops of essential oils. Sweet almond oil and olive oil are the most commonly used oil carriers. Massage oils and skincare products are an example of topical applications. The oils get absorbed into the skin when massaged in a circular motion increasing blood circulation.

Some argue that you cannot put essential oils anywhere on the body. They should be applied to areas that are richer in sweat glands and hair follicles. While some say that you can use diluted essential oils on your neck, the crown of your head, behind the ears, and even your temples, these places on your body have a slightly warmer temperature and can help the essential oil be more effective. Plus, regardless of where you place the oil, you have to be very informed about the functionality of the oil, its concentration, as well as where you can put them.

I would suggest…

Doing an allergy test by diluting the essential oil in a carrier oil and rubbing the mixture into an area of a quarter on the inside of the forearm. Wait for 24 to 48 hours. If there is no allergic reaction then it should be safe to use. Generally, a 5 percent concentration is considered safe for adults to use.it means diluting 30 drops to one ounce of oil carrier.

People can develop allergies to essential oils even after years of usage. If you feel you might be allergic to essential oils then it’s best to stop using them and get yourself tested.

The Best Essential Oils for Mind and Body – Benefits of Aromatherapy

Although there are several health benefits of aromatherapy, it does not provide a cure to a disease, illness, or rashes. It is a complementary therapy that can support conventional treatments.

Let’s have a rundown of the most effective essential oils for your mind and body.

The Best-Selling And Best-Smelling Essential Oils

1. Basil

Sweet basil oil is used in aromatherapy to calm, fortify, stimulate, and clarify the mind and provide some environmental benefits.

Basil Essential Oil Benefits
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  • Eliminated odor
  • Repel insects
  • Soothe headaches and migraines
  • Relieves digestive comforts
  • Improves respiratory health
  • Improves concentration
  • Fights against inflammatory diseases
  • Facilitates normal liver functioning

2. Eucalyptus

It is an evergreen tree native to Australia. Eucalyptus has several impressive benefits. However, many people are allergic to eucalyptus. So be careful while choosing it for your aromatherapy.

Benefits of Eucalyptus oil
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  • Reduces symptoms of flu
  • Soothes irritated skin
  • Repel insects
  • Disinfects wounds
  • Freshens breath
  • Soothe cold sores
  • Makes breathing easy
  • Controls blood sugar levels

3. Chamomile

Chamomile is a flower in the daisy family. It is native to Western Asia and Europe, but can now be found around the world. It smells like an apple which also derived its name – chamomile, the Greek word for Earth apple. Chamomile essential oil is used widely for almost everything.

Uses of Chamomile Oil
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  • Reduces inflammation
  • Treat eczema
  • Slowing down osteoporosis
  • Helping with sleep and relaxation
  • Improving mild skin conditions
  • Reduces menstrual pains
  • Controlling diabetes
  • Clearing the respiratory tract

Chamomile should not be used by pregnant or nursing moms, children, and people with kidney or liver issues. Chamomile aromatherapy should be discontinued at least 2 weeks before scheduled surgery or dental work as it may increase the risk of bleeding.

4. Cloves

Cloves are aromatic flower buds of a clove tree. The plant is native to Maluku Island in Indonesia. It is a spice full of antioxidants that are believed to provide many health benefits when consumed in a safe and prescribed amount. It smells warm and spicy with a note of bitterness. You will get a woody aroma from the clove’s essential oil. 

Clove Essential oil benefits
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  • Acts as an antimicrobial
  • Relieves toothache and muscle aches
  • Fixes the digestive upsets
  • Helps in alleviating cough and asthma
  • Reduce neurological issues like memory loss, anxiety, and depression
  • Improves concentration
  • Enhances the overall energy

5. Bergamot

Citrus Bergamia (Bergamot) is a citrus fruit that is native to Italy. The essential oil is extracted from its peel. Bergamot essential oil has a lot of active chemicals which provides several benefits. Its fragrance is refreshing and well-rounded. You will get a touch of citrus with floral and herbal notes.

Bergamot Oil Uses
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  • Fights Infection
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Antiseptic
  • Improves the speed of healing
  • Clears signs of acne
  • Cleanses the aura
  • Alleviates minor pains

6.  Lavender

Lavender is a plant that belongs to the mint family, native to countries bordering the Mediterranean. It is a very popular plant as it has multiple medicinal benefits and it is widely used in aromatherapy. It smells delicate, woodsy, herbal, with a note of sweet florals. Sometimes you will also get a powdery, soft, and smokey feel with it.

Lavender oil
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  • Promotes relaxation
  • Reduces the signs of anxiety
  • Aids allergies
  • Acts as a fungal disinfectant
  • Relieves menstrual cramps
  • Improves quality of sleep
  • Treats skin problems like eczema, acne, uneven skin tone, etc
  • Calming effects on mood
  • Soothing effects

7.  Geranium

Pelargonium graveolens are a species of plants native to South Africa. The essential oil is derived from the leaves through steam distillations. It has a very floral scent with some herbal and peppery notes to it. The bases, however, almost smell like a rose scent. The geranium essential oil has been used to treat health conditions for centuries and there are solid studies to prove that it works.

Geranium Essential Oil
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  • Stops minor wounds from bleeding
  • Reduces hyperglycemia
  • Topical use may reduce itching
  • Eases allergic reactions
  • Helps reduce labor pain
  • Lessens shingles pain
  • Improves the production of estrogen in women
  • Reduces cell deaths in the brain

8.  Jasmine

Jasmine is a plant from the olive family. It is native to warm and tropical regions. Jasmine is a very popular flower known for its fragrance and several other characteristics. Jasmine essential oil lends a rich, strong, and sweet floral scent. It is often combined with other essential oils to get the right touch.

Jasmine Aromatherapy
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  • It is an antidepressant
  • Acts as an antiseptic
  • Improves the intimate mood
  • Treats spasms in various parts of the body
  • Decreases menopause symptoms
  • Calms the nerves
  • Promotes healing wounds
  • Improve lactation

9.  Lemon

Lemon is a citrus fruit from a small species of trees native to Asia. It is widely used in flavoring ingredients, cosmetic, and health industries for its million benefits. Like other citrus fruits, its essential oil is also derived from its peel. The smell is very similar to fresh lemons just a tad bit stronger.

Lemon Aromatherapy Oils
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  • Cleanses the negativity
  • Provides a calming feeling
  • Can ease morning sickness
  • Improve the quality of your skin
  • Effective against bacteria
  • Acts as a minor pain reliever
  • Soothe a sore throat
  • Enhance concentration
  • Antifungal properties

10.  Sandalwood

Sandalwood comes from the genus Santalum trees. The wood is originally very fragrant and has been considered one of the most expensive woods in the world. The trees are native to India and Australia. The smell of sandalwood is sweet, soft, rich, balsamic, woody, and surprisingly floral. It has been a prime scent that’s a part of many best-selling perfumes and candles.

Sandalwood Oil Benefits
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  • Treats common cold
  • Reliefs Urinary Tract Infections
  • It is an anti-inflammatory
  • Supports wound healing
  • Fights bacteria
  • Reduce anxiety
  • Uplifts the mood

11.  Rosemary

Rosemary is a plant from the mint family native to the Mediterranean and Asian regions. This herb is often used to make perfumes, culinary condiments, and for its numerous health benefits. The flavor and scent of rosemary are similar to Eucalyptus. It is described as a strong pinewood scent, more like charred wood and pungent.

Rosemary Essential Oil Get It From Amazon
  • Eases stress and anxiety
  • Increase blood circulation
  • Reduces joint inflammation
  • Stimulates blood circulation
  • Wakes you up
  • Repels certain bugs and insects
  • Promotes energy
  • Improves brain functions

12.  Tea tree

Tea tree essential oil is derived from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia plant which is native to Australia. The smell is very close to peppermint or eucalyptus. It has a variety of benefits including keeping your body and mind healthy.

Tea Tree Benefits
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  • It is a natural hand sanitizer
  • Acts as an insect repellent
  • Can be a natural deodorant
  • Anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, and antiseptic
  • Fights acne
  • Kill bad odors
  • Help kill head lice
  • All-purpose cleaner
  • Relieves psoriasis

13.  Thyme

Thyme is a herb with small leaves on clusters of thin stems. It is also native to the Mediterranean and has been used for ornamental, medicinal, and culinary requirements. Thyme essential oil fragrance is reminiscent of spicy, fresh, and leathery.

Thyme Benefits of Aromatherapy
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  • Reduces acne-causing bacteria
  • Prevent hair loss
  • Treats respiratory tract infections and cough
  • Eliminates food-related fungi and bacteria
  • Improves oral hygiene
  • Acts as an anti-inflammatory
  • Boosts positive emotions
  • Keep nightmares at bay

14.  Yarrow

Commonly known as Achillea, Yarrow is a plant that grows all over the world. The dark blue essential oil is extracted from the flower. Yarrow exudes sharp, fruity, woody, little sweet, and largely herbaceous notes. It is rather an uncommon one but offers a variety of benefits.

Yarrow Essential Oil Aromatherapy
Yarrow Essential Oil Get It From Amazon
  • Treats circulatory diseases
  • Helps with skin issues
  • Extremely effective antiseptic
  • Eases bodily spasms
  • Improves oral health
  • Helps release toxins
  • Clears congestion
  • Keeps skin healthy and smoother

15.  Black pepper

Black pepper is a plant that belongs to the family of Piperaceae. Although it is cultivated for its fruit known as peppercorn, the plant is dried to serve as the popular spice we all know as black pepper. The essential oil is extracted through steam distillation. The aroma conveys spicy, musky, warm, and peppery notes.

Black pepper essential oil benefits
Black Pepper Essential Oil Get It From Amazon
  • Stimulates healthy appetite
  • Cleanses the body from toxins
  • Eases anxiety and stress
  • Soothes pain
  • Helps clear the digestive tracts
  • Fights against germs and several bacteria
  • Improves skin imperfection
  • Relaxes muscles
  • Improve mood and balances emotions

Risks Of Essential Oils

Essential oils are strong and effective chemicals that’s can stir positive changes in your body. Similarly, they can also cause a train of allergies and side effects. It is best to talk to an aromatherapist, doctor, or professional in the field to help you select an essential oil that fits your needs perfectly.

There are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. It is not suitable for lactating and/or pregnant moms
  2. All essential oils may not be safe for babies or pets
  3. Always conduct an allergy test
  4. A few may have adverse effects when combined with medication
  5. Not every essential oil is good for you, people with blood pressure issues should avoid rosemary oil
  6. Be informed about your decision
  7. Never use pure essential oils – always blend with carrier oils

 A Word From Me

Aromatherapy is a great complementary treatment that applies a holistic approach. The essential oils are recommended based on the individual’s physical and mental needs. Some people often use aromatherapy as a self-care ritual. Given this, aromatherapy can help you in a variety of ways. But it is important to perform due diligence while selecting the oils for yourself.

I would suggest taking it slow and then working your way according to how your body responds to aromatherapy and essential oils. I have also included my favorite brands and products for you to consider.

Although these are affiliate links, I value your trust and viewership more than anything. I will not endorse anything that is not valuable or loved by me and my family.

I hope you find the article helpful. If you do, please share to help others. And don’t forget to join our social media family – you can find the links at the bottom of the page.  

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