Eucalyptus Essential Oils #AtoZChallenge

Welcome to the letter E post in my #AtoZChallenge on aromatherapy. Today I will share what I know about eucalyptus essential oil.

Let me start by saying that my use of the singular word “oil” when referring to eucalyptus, is incorrect. There are several types of essential oils derived from different species of eucalyptus. These various types of eucalyptus essential oil are similar, but still each have their own somewhat different uses. The most common types of eucalyptus used in aromatherapy are eucalyptus globulus, eucalyptus radiata, lemon eucalyptus and peppermint eucalyptus (eucalyptus dives). I only own eucalyptus globulus.

Eucalyptus oils that contain large amounts of cineole should not be used on children under age ten. These include eucalyptus globulus and eucalyptus radiata. Lemon eucalyptus and eucalyptus dives can be used on children age two and up.

According to Valerie Ann Worwood, in her book The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy, eucalyptus radiata is the safest essential oil out of the various eucalyptus species to be used by people with chronic health conditions.

Eucalyptus is perhaps best known for its effectiveness in relieving common cold symptoms such as a stuffy nose. However, it also has antiviral and other antimicrobial properties. It also works as a natural pain reliever, particularly for arthritis.

According to Worwood, eucalyptus helps relief sunburn and cools the body in summer. By contrast, in winter, eucalyptus warms the body and keeps infection at bay.

Eucalyptus has a fresh, somewhat sharp scent. The aroma of eucalyptus globulus, the one I own, is described as herbaceous, menthol and camphorous with woodsy undertones. Personally, I never thought of it as a camphorous scent (that reminds me of cinnamon, but I might be wrong). It has deodorizing properties.

Eucalyptus, particularly the lemon variety, can be used as an insect repellant. Eucalyptus essential oil is energizing and helps with focus and concentration.

Eucalyptus essential oil blends well with lemon and other citrus oils, rosemary, peppermint and tea tree essential oil. If you want to sleep peacefully and breathe easily at the same time, blend eucalyptus essential oil with lavender. It also blends well with woodsy essential oils such as cedarwood or sandalwood.

Do you like the scent of eucalyptus?

Essential Oils and Fragrances: My Favorite Scents #AtoZChallenge

I am very late posting my letter E post in the #AtoZChallenge, because I’m struggling quite a bit. I won’t go into details about that now. My letter E post is about essential oils and other fragrant products.

Essential oils are oils that are extracted from plants. They are called essential, because without them the plant will die. Essential oils are often believed by natural medicine-minded people to help with a variety of health issues. There are no placebo-controlled, double blind research studies on their effectiveness though. I in fact doubt that’d be possible, as patients would be able to tell by smell whether they’d get the EO or a placebo.

That being said, essential oils do smell good and, even if you don’t believe in their effectiveness for health issues, you can still use them in self-care. Here are some of my favorites.

1. Ylang ylang. This sweet-smelling essential oil is reported to be an aphrodisiac. It is also said to help with relieving anxiety, sadness or tension. It can be used as a relaxing oil. I just love the smell of this oil!

2. Sweet orange. This oil is reported to be good for lifting your mood. It is my favorite of the citrus essential oils.

3. Eucalyptus. I don’t know what type of eucalyptus EO I own, as I bought it at a soaping supplies store that didn’t specialize in aromatherapy. There are several commonly-used eucalyptus varieties, such as eucalyptus globulus and eucalyptus radiata. I particularly like to smell eucalyptus when I’m having a cold or congested sinuses.

4. Peppermint. This is another oil that helps when I’m having a cold. I bought it at the same soaping supplies vendor I bought the eucalyptus EO at. They recommended peppermint oil should not be used in baths, as it is very strong.

5. Lavender. Though I don’t particularly care for strong lavender scents, I like to diffuse a little lavender EO when I can’t sleep. I don’t know whether it works, but it does help.

Besides essential oils, other products that have strong scents can be used in self-care too. For example, when I still lived with my husband, I would often burn a wax melt. These are a relatively safe alternative to scented candles. That is, the melting wax doesn’t get very hot, but it still makes a mess at times and you don’t want to spill it all over your hands. It may not leave burn marks, but it’s definitely uncomfortable.

Wax melts come in a ton of different scents. I particularly liked the bakery smells, though my husband found most way too strong.

What are your favorite scents?