Lavender Oil

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Lavender Oil

Lavender oil is one of the most widely used essential oils on the planet. This stems from the fact that lavender is very popular as a herb in many parts. Lavender essential oil is a marvelous oil that has a plethora of uses for personal and home use. Its most powerful use is aromatherapy, where it is used to calm the mind, relieve anxiety, and induce sleep. People who have insomnia use it on their pillows to bring rest, and this too has come from the traditional remedy of keeping lavender flowers by the bedside for better sleep.

Source

Lavender essential oil is obtained from two sources. It can be extracted from the flowers of the plant, called lavender flower oil. Another variety of lavender oil is obtained from a specific species called Lavendula latifolia ( Spike Lavender ). This comes from the Mediterranean and is called spike lavender oil. This oil has got a higher percentage of camphor, so it smells cooler and sharper.

The lavender plant is native to the western Mediterranean region. In many places, this beautiful violet flower grows wild, like in Australia. There, you can see fields and fields of lavender dancing in the wind. Lavender is still cultivated primarily for its essential oil, which has such an immense therapeutical value.

Lavender oil is also used as an ingredient in many perfumes and bath products. 

Properties

These are the therapeutic properties of lavender essential oil.

  • Anti-Inflammatory – lowers inflammation topically
  • Anti-bacterial – kills many kinds of bacteria
  • Anti-viral – effective against some virus species
  • Cicatrizant – aids wound healing
  • Anxiolytic – relieves anxiety attacks
  • Antiseptic – prevents chances of infection on a wound or cut
  • Anti-rheumatic – relieves arthritic pain
  • Carminative – helps the body pass out intestinal gas
  • Deodorant – Its smell is amazing. Gets rid of foul odor
  • Analgesic – mild pain reliever
  • Anti-depressant – Its smell stimulates mental faculties and uplifts mood
  • Anti-convulsant – relieves a seizure
  • Hypotensive – lowers the blood pressure a notch
  • Nervine – beneficial effect on the nervous system
  • Cholagogue – promotes the release of bile from the liver
  • Sedative – helps a person relax by lowering irritability
  • Anti-spasmodic – prevents muscular spasms
  • Sudorific – increases sweat production
  • Rubefacient – reduces redness on the skin
  • Diuretic – promotes the release of urine
  • Adaptogen – improves the ability to combat stress

The properties of lavender essential oil are diverse. That makes it useful for so many conditions and health issues.

Uses and Health Benefits

Due to an amazing lineup of beneficial therapeutic properties, lavender oil can be used in the following ways.

Reduce Your Anxiety

If you feel an anxiety attack coming up, open your bottle of lavender essential oil and smell it for about 10 seconds. The volatile compounds from lavender enter into the system and provide relief from anxiety. People prone to anxiety can keep the vial of lavender oil in their purse and sniff it whenever they feel the need. It is so convenient and easy to do. This practice also aids in relaxing and lowering mental stress. Lavender oil has potent anxiety-reducing effects. [1]

Combat Hair Loss

Lavender essential oil is one of the best natural treatments for hair loss. Along with rosemary oil and a few other oils, it is one of the select few identified to promote hair growth[2]. It is beneficial in Alopecia areata, which is hair loss caused due to autoimmune reasons. This is how one can use lavender essential oil for hair loss.

  • Ingredients
  • Lavender essential oil
  • Rosemary essential oil
  • Jojoba oil
  • Directions / How to use
  • Take about 100 ml of jojoba oil. Add 8 – 10 drops of lavender oil and rosemary oil each. Mix it well. Take a small amount of this oil and massage it on the balding patches. The results will not be quick to show up. It can take six months for significant results to be seen.
  • Why does it work?
  • Rosemary and lavender essential oil boost blood circulation to the scalp, eliminate blockages, and promote hair growth. They also treat any fungal infection on the scalp which might be causing the blockage of hair follicles.

Lavender essential oil provides many health benefits for the scalp skin. It is also used in hot oil treatments and shampoos to treat head lice.

Lavender Oil For Acne

The oil of lavender is brilliant for reducing acne. It may not be able to help with new breakouts, but it reduces the redness of pimples. This reduces the overall redness on your face, thus making acne much less prominent.

  • Ingredients
  • Lavender essential oil
  • Jojoba oil
  • Directions / How to use
  • Take about 10 ml of jojoba oil and add 2 – 4 drops of lavender oil. Smear this oil on the face after cleansing. It acts as a moisturizer. The lavender oil reduces red, inflamed pimples.
  • Why does it work?
  • Lavender oil has rubefacient properties. That’s why it reduces redness caused by inflammation. Lavender oil is even more effective for cystic acne.

There is a reason for choosing jojoba oil in this combination. Jojoba oil has a unique property. It resembles the natural oil of skin ( sebum ) brilliantly. So, when it is applied to the skin, there is not much oiliness created by that. This prevents blockage of pores as it is non-comedogenic. As a result, there is no breakout caused by this oil. Jojoba oil is great for acne. [3]

People who suffer from acne should look into the comedogenicity of various products they use.

Curb the Cough

Add a few drops of lavender oil to a vaporizer. Let its smell invade the entire house. This air suppresses cough and feels good to the human psyche.

Lavender Oil For Headaches

Take your bottle of lavender oil. Invert it on the palm. Using a finger, rub the small amount of lavender oil on the palm on the upper lip. It might feel a bit stingy. Applying it on the upper lip allows one to breathe lavender continuously. This remedy relieves headaches and migraines. [4]

Lavender Oil For Body Pains

Lavender oil, as mentioned above, is an Analgesic. It provides pain relief. One can make use of this to relieve any pain. Add a few drops of lavender essential oil to a cold compress. Use this compress to massage the area of pain. This works great for pain in the back, neck, shoulders, arthritic pain, gouty pain in any joint, abdominal pain, and even headache.

For arthritis pain, say in the knees, one can get extended relief by applying a cold wrap instead of just a compress.

Treat a Sunburn

Lavender oil quickly heals a sunburn. It cools the skin, takes the sting out of the burn, and also promotes faster healing. The entire recovery period from a sunburn comes down drastically, and there is much less discomfort. There are various ways in which lavender oil can be used for this purpose.

  • Put ten drops of lavender oil in a spray bottle with cool but not cold water. Spray this solution all over your skin. It feels very cooling and relieving.
  • Add few drops of lavender essential oil to aloe vera gel. This increases the effectiveness of aloe.
  • Add about 20 drops of lavender oil to cool, but not cold bathwater. Take a bath in this water to relieve a sunburn.

This treatment is also effective for sunstroke.

Home Remedy For Insomnia

Lavender oil is excellent for inducing sleep. Apply a few drops of lavender oil on your pillow. This reduces the restlessness or agitation in the mind, calms the spirit, and allows one to get sound sleep [5]. If you apply some oil on the feet in diluted form, it helps with restless leg syndrome.

Minor burns

First-degree burns can be treated with undiluted lavender oil. Just apply a few drops of lavender essential oil pure on burnt skin. Make sure you do a patch test on healthy skin, as lavender oil can irritate some people. In that case, your burn would worsen instead of healing.

Take the sting out of an Insect Bite.

Put lavender oil on a cotton bud and place it right on the insect bite. This quickly reduces redness and takes the sting out of the bite. There is much less pain. It works for mosquito bites, spider bites, fleas, ticks, bed bugs, etc.

Lavender Oil For Asthma

Diffuse lavender oil smell inside the house using a vaporizer. This smell promotes relaxation of the respiratory muscles. It helps alleviate bronchial spasms that occur in asthma and many other respiratory conditions like bronchitis and pneumonia. The lavender aroma in the air helps a person breathe better, which helps in COPD and any breathing difficulty.

Eczema

Dilute the lavender essential oil in coconut oil. Add about 20 drops of lavender oil per 200 ml of coconut oil. Use this oil on skin affected by eczema. It should improve the condition of the skin. [2]

Lavender oil can be used in a bath, aromatherapy, vaporizer, creams, and lotions. It is just so versatile. There are many other health benefits of lavender essential oil.

  • Relaxes the nervous system – Lavender oil can slow down the nervous system, making a person feel anything slowly. This is good when you want to relax, not good when you are driving.[2]
  • When used in shampoo, it eliminates dandruff.
  • Motion sickness – Lavender aroma helps to calm motion sickness or even any other kind of vomiting.
  • Hay fever – Lavender smell relieves the symptoms of hay fever.

Lavender Oil Products For Home

Lavender is a popular ingredient in many products. One can easily get lavender soaps, lavender hand wash, lavender oil shampoo, potpourris, incense sticks, chimes, and many other products containing lavender oil.

Lavender Oil For Dogs And Cats

Lavender oil has great use for pets. Applying a bit of oil near the face calms anxious or irritated dogs and cats. People use this to calm dogs on a flight, in a public place, or while training.

Side Effects and Toxicity Issues

Lavender oil is generally safe to use topically in undiluted form. It is one of the safest essential oils. However, one should not use it internally. Although many food products contain lavender as a flavoring agent, drinking an essential oil can be very dangerous. It can cause very severe inflammation inside the body. Keep lavender essential oil away from kids, as they can drink it.

Lavender oil should not be used by people who are allergenic to it. In some people, lavender oil can be very irritating. It causes contact dermatitis upon contact in such people.

The lavender essential oil can be used Neat ( undiluted ) for many skin conditions.

Nutritional Information

Lavender essential oil is mainly composed of two nutrients – linalool and linalyl acetate. Together they make up a large portion of any lavender essential oil.

Linalool – is a naturally occurring compound found in many essential oils. It has a sharp smell with a hint of flowery odor. It is used in perfumes and other hygiene products. It is also a natural flea repellant.

Linalyl acetate – It’s a fragrant compound found in lavender oil and bergamot oil. Both of these compounds have anti-inflammatory activity. [6]

Chemical composition of Lavender Essential Oil ( from Lavandula Angustifolia )

NutrientPercentageProperty
Linalool 28.92 %Anti-inflammatory, Aromatic
Linalyl Acetate 32.98 %Anti inflammatory, Fragrant
Lavendulyl Acetate 4.52 %
Camphor 0.85 %Rubefacient, Anti-irritant
β – Ocimene 3 %Pleasant odor
Lavandulol 0.78 %Slight Lemony Odor
1,8 – cineole –Cough suppressant, Insecticide
Caryophyllene 4.52 %Strongly anti-inflammatory
Myrcene 0.46 %Analgesic
Terpinen-4-ol 4.32 % Anti- Cancer, Anti-inflammatory

Source: Wikipedia

These are just the major chemical compounds found in lavender oil. It contains many more beneficial compounds which provide subtle health benefits.

Also Read – Chili Oil Best Health Benefits

References

1. Anxiolytic effects of lavender oil inhalation on open-field behavior in rats. D. Shawa, J.M. Annettb, B. Doherty, J.C. Leslie. Phytomedicine.

2. University of Maryland Medical Center – Lavender

3.Clay jojoba oil facial mask for lesioned skin and mild acne–results of a prospective, observational pilot study. Meier L, Stange R, Michalsen A, Uehleke B. NCBI.

4. National Institutes of Health NIH – Lavender

5. Lavender As Sleep Aid – Health Psychology Home Page, Vanderbilt.edu

6. Anti-inflammatory activity of linalool and linalyl acetate constituents of essential oils. Peana AT, D’Aquila PS, Panin F, Serra G, Pippia P, Moretti MD. NCBI

7. Terpinen-4-ol, The Main Component of Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree) Oil Inhibits the In Vitro Growth of Human Melanoma Cells. Annarica Calcabrini, Annarita Stringaro, Laura Toccacieli, Stefania Meschini, Manuela Marra, Marisa Colone, Giuseppe Salvatore, Francesca Mondello, Giuseppe Arancia and Agnese Molinari. Journal of Investigative Dermatology.

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