As far as I’m concerned, therapy should be free for anyone and everyone. It’s been years since I started weekly sessions and having that outlet has done wonders for my overall mental health. Still, I have enough common sense to know that it isn’t a miracle cure for completely avoiding bad days. Those definitely still happen. Everyone has their own way of coping with stress, but I’ve found that the little mood-boosters add up and matter just as much. For me, that includes the best essential oil for whenever my anxiety is on 100.
No, it doesn’t instantly kill panic attacks or get rid of anxiety completely, but essential oils remind me to simply breathe in and out when I’ve lost my focus. Sometimes I take a whiff straight from a teeny bottle and sometimes I slip a couple drops in the diffuser. Either way, it helps me to calm TF down when the going gets tough or when I simply want the house to smell good. To be honest, there aren’t many essential oil smells I don’t like, but a few are specifically touted as stress relievers.
Whenever friends inquire about the best scents to try, I almost always direct them to my personal favorite Saje who not only makes high-quality essential oils but killer blends that I’ve grown to love too. The website is also a treasure trove of essential oil facts, including recommendations for getting yourself into a relaxing or meditative state; lavender, frankincense and sandalwood included. But of course, there are plenty of others too. Keep scrolling for the quick 411 on each.
Lavender is one of the most popular essential oil options for fostering feelings of calm and relaxation. Personally, I love that it’s obviously floral, but not so floral that it feels as though your nostrils are being assaulted.
Sandalwood is a heavier scent that’s somewhere between floral and woodsy. Though it’s typically used as a base note in fragrances, its warm and powdery ambiance is the equivalent of a big, warm blanket.
According to Saje, frankincense is a top pick for meditation practices as it is thought “to bring deep peace and balance and to bring clarity to the mind as you explore a meditative state and deeper spiritual understanding.” Personally, I love that this woody scent has a very subtle sweetness to sort of balance things out without taking away from its earthiness.
Clary sage is an arguably controversial scent that people either love or hate (at least, according to my experience). Think “the earthy version of lavender.” And though I can’t confirm it, it’s been said that clary sage can help with period cramps as well.
On the other hand, if you prefer a scent that will put some pep in your step, peppermint is not only soothing to sore muscles, but a quick and easy way to awaken the senses when you need a mood boost too.
Not only is lemongrass essential oil a great source of antibacterial properties; it lends a purifying-like smell to the air when it’s too cold to open the windows.
Eucalyptus oil smells like the toned-down version of a Christmas pine tree with a hint of honey. A couple of drops in bath water or along the shower floor will make you want to stay in longer.
If you’ve ever taken a whiff of Chanel No. 5, the fruity floral scent of ylang-ylang shouldn’t be new to you. The invigorating smell will remind you of a tropical vacation…and may actually convince you to book one.
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