Our top 3 essential oils for skin, sleep and wellbeing
Lavender essential oil is one of the more popular oils and for good reason. It has so many uses and is one of the only oils that can be used directly on the skin undiluted.
Sleep – Lavender is best known for its calming, sedative, sleep-inducing and hypnotic properties. When used in a diffuser or applied directly to your pillow it can help induce sleep and promote better quality sleep. One study found that lavender essential oil improved sleep quality for students with self-reported sleep issues. Good quality sleep is essential to overall health and wellbeing and the appearance and integrity of the skin and general immune function.
Skin – Lavender oil is excellent when applied topically to the skin. It has antimicrobial action and reduces inflammation which is beneficial for those with acne and other inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema. For acne, it is best to dilute lavender oil with a carrier oil such as coconut oil and apply it before bed to a clean face.
Lavender is also excellent for those who want to reduce wrinkles. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, it helps to reduce free radical formation on the skin. Excess free-radical formation can contribute towards wrinkle formation. Lavender oil also has antioxidant properties which further helps to reduce wrinkling by supporting the function of collagen in the skin – the main protein that maintains bounce and elasticity.
Frankincense is made from Boswellia and has anti-inflammatory properties. The essential oil of frankincense has many uses for the health of the body.
Skin – Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, frankincense can aid the healing of the skin in inflammatory conditions when applied topically with a carrier oil. Frankincense oil can be used in cases of sunburn, acne rosacea and acne breakouts and encourages skin healing.
Frankincense essential oil is known for its astringent properties. That means it has skin tightening and contracting affects and can be excellent for helping to slow down the formation of wrinkles and tone the skin. The tightening affects on the skin increases the skins barrier function which helps to prevent the entry of bacteria and therefore helps to reduce the chance of developing skin infections.
Frankincense oil is very potent, so it should always be diluted when using it on the skin - 1 drop of frankincense should be mixed with 1 teaspoon of carrier oil. There are many excellent carrier oils which suit frankincense oil including jojoba oil, coconut oil or almond oil.
Immunity – Frankincense oil is used in a few remedies thanks to its anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties. As well as being antiviral, it may support overall immune function which benefits many diseases. When inhaled from a diffuser, frankincense may help to break up excess mucus in the lungs.
Rose essential oil has a delicate and feminine smell along with a wide range of uses.
Stress relief – Rose oil when inhaled reduces stress and induces a state of relaxation. Researchers found that rose oil also decreases the symptoms of stress such as high blood pressure, increased breathing rates and lowered the level of cortisol (stress hormone) in the blood.
Rose oil may also help those who suffer from feelings of depression. After you have cleared it with your doctor, rose oil may provide some relief. Research into those with depression has found that rose oil may provide some relief for the symptoms of depression. Rose oil stimulates the release of dopamine which helps individuals who feel depressed. You may need to persist with rose oil however, as it can take up to 8 weeks to see benefits.
Anti-microbial – Studies have shown that rose essential oil has demonstrated some anti-microbial properties against a few infections. Rose oil may be a great addition to your skincare routine when mixed with a carrier oil, especially if you are prone to skin infections.