You’ve smelled a few essential oils before. You may have even picked up a bottle of pure lavender in hopes that having it on your dresser would cure your anxiety through osmosis. But if your exploration of mood-boosting oils stopped there, let Christine Allmer, aromatherapy expert for Desert Essence oils and cosmetics, shed some light on a few easy habits that can help you put those pretty little bottles to practical use.
The Oil: Lavender
How to use it: “Sprinkle a few drops of the oil on your pillow before bedtime,” advises Allmer. Not only will you feel crazy-calm as you drift off, but the quality of your zzz’s will be better, too, since the scent of the oil will help lull you back to sleep if you’re fitful, says Allmer.
The Oil: Eucalyptus
How to use it: According to Allmer, a few drops of this oil in your bath is the perfect cure for post-workout soreness. Add eight to ten drops to a cup of epsom salts, drop the mix in the bath, and your muscles will instantly feel like Jell-O, says Allmer.
The Oil: Tea Tree
How to use it: You might’ve noticed tea tree as an ingredient in some natural blemish treatments. That’s because the oil is astringent, says Allmer, which means it has purifying and detoxifying qualities. While it’s not always advisable to use the essential oil form of this stuff directly on your skin, according to Allmer, you can take advantage of its astringent properties for odor removal. To instantly freshen up, say, a not-so-plesant smelling pair of shoes, add two to three drops of tea tree to each sole.
The Oil: Frankincense
How to use it: Frankincense promotes peace and serenity, says Allmer. That in mind, her favorite way to take it in is by way of a water-based diffuser (we like Muji’s Ultrasonic Aroma Diffuser, $69.50; muji.com), which will emit the scent throughout the day for an ultra-calming ambience.