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Essential oils are no longer just for earth-loving hippies and new-age spa-goers. The therapeutic benefits of the oils for fatigue, stress, nausea, and other common ailments have everyone from soccer moms to athletes using the aromatic oils. Always to be diluted with a carrier oil, like grape seed, and ingested only after consulting a physician, we got the skinny on which essential oil to use for which issues from Amanda Wells, staff herbalist and manager at Apothecary Tinctura.
Wells, who has a bachelor’s degree in Integrative Therapeutic Practices from Metropolitan State University of Denver, suggests applying a few drops of the diluted mixture to the palms of hands, temples, or bottoms of feet for quickest entry into the bloodstream. While the list of essential oils is upwards of 100 names long, we honed in on a few to get you started. And if you don’t see your ailment listed, pop into any apothecary for advice or even a custom blend.
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Lavender: Well’s described lavender as an “all-arounder” that could be applied to bee stings, bug bites, and sunburns—which is especially helpful during the summer months.
Grapefruit or Mandarin: Most citrus oils are good for insomnia or sleep issues. Grapefruit, in particular, can also help with, ahem, hangovers or to curb appetite.
Peppermint: Peppermint could replace many items in your medicine cabinet as it can be used to alleviate an upset stomach, headaches, rashes, muscle pain, and heartburn.
Ravintsara: Ravintsara is derived from cinnamon, has a scent similar to eucalyptus, and can be used for symptoms of the common cold, congestion, and flu. It can also be used on cold sores and small cuts and wounds.
Rose: As if the flowery, perfumed scent wasn’t enough incentive to apply a few drops, essential rose oil can help with stress, anxiety, and menstrual cramps.