If you’re a fan of do-it-yourself remedies for your hair and body, you probably notice that many of the recipes you come across call for the use of “your favorite essential oils.” Not only do essential oils offer a wide variety of benefits when added to natural DIY products, many are also used to preserve your products to guarantee a longer shelf life. Because I’m a self-proclaimed “MIXtress” who has been making my own natural products for the hair and body for many years, I’ve pretty much discovered which essential oils offer the greatest benefits and work the best for multiple purposes. If you’re not sure which essential oils you should use the next time a DIY recipe calls for it, check out my list of faves and why I recommend using them.
Tea Tree Essential Oil
Tea tree oil has always been one of my holy grail products. I don’t care what type of product you’re making, tea tree oil is probably going to be a welcomed ingredient. I love that tea tree essential oil is an antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antiviral, fungicide, insecticide, and stimulant. That means you can use it to treat almost anything that may be ailing you. I’ve used it in DIY hair and body products to treat eczema, acne, dandruff, dry skin, and arthritis, just to name a few things. This is one of the stronger essential oils on the market and many people may find the smell a bit off-putting. Also, don’t confuse tea tree essential oil with the tea tree products sold by many large chain and beauty supply stores.
Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender oil is an anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and antifungal, and offers many of the same benefits as tea tree oil, but it’s also a calming, analgesic that’s often used as a topical pain reliever. I love using lavender oil in hair and skin care products to soothe the scalp and skin, and increase blood circulation. Lavender oil is also great for adding a nice fragrance to your products.
Rosemary Essential Oil
I love rosemary oil because it almost seems like it’s an essential oil born from the marriage of tea tree oil and lavender oil. It offers most of the same benefits as those two oils, but I find it to also be a very powerful stimulant with regenerative properties. That’s why it’s a favorite for stimulating hair growth. Many people also find rosemary oil useful in treating headaches and joint pain.
Manuka Essential Oil
Manuka isn’t really a “popular” oil that you hear about very often, but it’s definitely one that’s worth trying. Manuka oil is an antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, etc, but it’s really great for treating both acne and dandruff. Instead of buying a bunch of products that treat dandruff, you can just add a few drops to all your hair care products. Manuka is also great for skin care products because it promotes the regeneration of cells and helps clear up scars and blemishes. Lastly, if you’re a fan of natural deodorant, this oil is great for eliminating body odor.
Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
Although Ylang Ylang is often used as an antidepressant and aphrodisiac, it’s great for skin care products because it’s known for relieving stress and soothing inflammation. I love it for hair care products as well because it’s often used to protect hair strands and help promote hair growth and thickness.
Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint oil is used in countless DIY health, hair, and skin care products, as well as DIY household cleaners and ant, insect, and rodent repellents. It’s also great for treating poison ivy and allergic reactions, clearing sinuses, soothing headaches, and stimulating the scalp and hair follicles to promotes hair growth.
Keep in mind that there are nearly 100 essential oils that offer many different benefits. Don’t be afraid to experiment to see which ones you prefer using. It is also important to remember that most essential oils should never be used on your hair or skin without being diluted with a carrier oil (coconut oil, castor oil, etc) or added to some type of hair or skin care product. Using essential oils alone can cause adverse reactions since they’re so concentrated. Pregnant women should also consult a doctor before using essential oils or products containing them, especially during the first trimester.