Ah, lavender! Just the sound of this beautiful flower’s name invokes an image of pleasant color and a scent as soothing as it is refreshing. Lavender is a time-honored herb that's enjoyed around the world in many natural health practices, with uses ranging from skin care to aromatherapy to supporting restful sleep. Here are two of the most popular ways you can experience lavender oil benefits.
The essential oil of the lavender flower contains the active compound and the "medicinal magic" of the plant. It has potential benefits for the outside of your body -- your skin -- as well as for the inner realm of your mind and spirit. This is because lavender essential oil contains compounds that can not only soothe and nourish skin, but also positively affect your nervous system and emotions.* Let’s take a closer look at lavender’s benefits in each of these vital areas.
Lavender for your skin
Lavender supports naturally healthy skin because its essential oil is the ideal skin tonic, with its gentle and nurturing effects on this vital exterior organ. It can help ease the pain of sunburn, and assist in soothing dry, chafed and irritated skin. It can also serve as the perfect complement to massage; lavender massage oil is used in elite spas around the world.
Lavender for your emotions
As an emotional tonic, the essential oils of lavender have been widely used to calm the spirit, nourish the mind and promote restful sleep.* We all know what an irritated, stressed-out nervous system can feel like. For times when you’re on the go and need to unwind, use a few drops of the oil in your bath, or spritz your body with some aromatherapy lavender oil spray, to bring your nervous system down a notch before you go to bed.
Because essential oils can impact the olfactory system, which is closely linked with the limbic system -- the “emotional center” of your brain -- using lavender in a diffuser or an air freshener can help to gently remind you to pause, take a deep breath and remain calm during the hustle and bustle of a busy day.*
Using lavender oil
One simple trick for increasing the scent of lavender in your living space is to put one or two drops of the essential oil onto a light bulb. The heat from the bulb helps to disperse the oil into the air.
To increase the scent of lavender oil in your car, moisten a cotton ball with the oil and keep it near your car seat in a small plastic container or cup. Add fresh essential oil to the cotton ball two or three times a week. You can also use a car-ready diffuser.
The pure essential oil of lavender also can be simply added to any unscented massage oil, laundry detergent, liquid soap, lotion, conditioner or shampoo. Just add a few drops and mix, and keep adding drops until you reached the strength of the scent you desire. Alternatively, you can purchase products already containing lavender, such as Glonaturals Lavender Liquid Castille Soap, Lavender Scented Fabric Softener or Glonaturals Essentials Collection Hand Sanitizer.
Lavender can also be ingested as a tea, and there are many brands on the market. Traditional Medicinals combines lavender in tea with chamomile to create a lovely calming and nourishing tea. You can also try Lifestyle Awareness Serene Slumbar Organic Tea to support restful sleep, or Celebration Herbals Organic Lavender Tea, which can be purchased in bulk so you can make your tea in extra strong doses.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.