When I was a little girl, I got into the habit of telling my grandmother that I didn’t feel well, when really I was fine. I wasn’t doing it to get out of doing something I didn’t want to, as many children do, but because I knew that I would get to apply some of her special essential oils. They always helped me to feel better when I was sick, but I also loved the way they smelled. This was my early introduction to the healing benefits of Aromatherapy. I learned at that young age that Aromatherapy is not just a luxurious add on to a spa treatment, but something can contribute to overall wellbeing.

For anyone who isn’t familiar with Aromatherapy, here are some basics: Aromatherapy is practiced by inhaling or topically applying essential oils to the skin, to receive the healing benefits of the plants they are derived from. These oils, unlike synthetic fragrances, are naturally extracted from the roots, leaves, and even blossoms of various plants. Different oils or combinations of oils have different healing benefits. They can enhance mood and energy levels or even reduce pain and inflammation, among many other things. My favorite thing about them is that they can be incorporated into products you already use daily, like soaps, lotions and bath soaks, to enjoy the wonderful aromas and nourishment they offer.

There are many different essential oil aromas out there, and I know that getting started can seem a little intimidating at first, but that’s what I’m here for. I’ll share with you some of my very favorite oils, a few of the healing properties they have, and either some products I love which already contain them, or a way you can use them, on their own, at home.

Buying products you use every day that already contains essential oils is incredibly smart. You get a natural product that you use anyway, natural fragrance, and extra nourishment, without even thinking about it. Vineyard Hill Naturals is a company that makes products, which already contain these wonderful natural oils. Their products are made with the best natural and certified organic ingredients, with absolutely no sulfates, parabens, or synthetic fragrance and no animal testing. You can read more about them at vineyardhill.com and find their products on Amazon.

Anyway, lets get to it. Here are my top five essential oils.

1. Lavender- Lavender is definitely one of the most popular. The aroma is mild, floral, and very soothing. It has been known to help with anxiety, depression, headaches, inflammation, insomnia, skin irritation and even easing muscle cramps. I actually rub it on my wrists and temples every night before I go to sleep, and I never plan to stop. I also love using lavender in lotions. I would recommend trying Vineyard Hill Naturals Lemon Verbena Hand and Body Lotion 

2. Lemon Verbena- This oil has a fresh aroma, with healing benefits believed to soothe indigestion, boost the immune system, and stimulate the senses. I love using the Vineyard Hill Naturals Hand and Body Wash in the morning. It helps me feel aware and refreshed before I begin my day.

3. Rosemary – That’s right, Rosemary isn’t just for spicing food. The oil has a very nice and subtle woodsy aroma, and it is beneficial for skin irritation, headaches, and boosting the immune system. I would recommend the Vineyard Hill Naturals Rosemary Thyme Body Butter. While the seasons are changing, or if you live in a dry environment this body butter is amazing for keeping your skin moisturized and smelling great.

One of my other favorite things to do with essential oils is to enjoy them in a luxurious bath while winding down at night. I usually use either Patchouli or Eucalyptus. I just add a few drops to the water along with some bath salts and enjoy.

4. Patchouli- This oil has a rich and earthy aroma. I love incorporating it into baths because it is great for muscle soreness and fatigue, which I often need some help with by the end of my day. I’m sure many of you can relate. It is also known to help with depression and inflammation. Who couldn’t use an all-natural mood boost once in a while?

5. Eucalyptus – This oil has a crisp woodsy aroma, which reminds me a little of peppermint. It is my go-to oil when I’m not feeling well–particularly when I have a respiratory ailment like a cold, as it is known to help ease the respiratory system. It is soothing, and great for fevers and nose and sinus congestion as well. I would even suggest adding some Rosemary for a nice blend. The two smell great together, and can both help you get feeling better faster.

I hope this helps you to get started with Aromatherapy, or give those of you who are already somewhat familiar with some new ideas on how to incorporate them into your daily routine.