For years, people around the world have used the power of scents to heal, uplift, and energize. Aromatherapy
is a form of alternative medicine that uses scents to aide, cure, and soothe a variety of conditions.
was discovered quite accidentally, in the 1920’s by French chemist Rene Maurice Gattefosse. After inadvertently setting his arm on fire, Rene dipped his burning flesh in the nearest vat of cool liquid. This cool liquid was not water, as he expected, but was lavender essential oil
. This wasn’t the first time poor Rene had burned himself, but this time it was different. His pain level dropped suddenly, and unlike his previous burns, this one healed nicely without blisters or scars. The difference, of course, was in the treatment – lavender, of all things. Following this fateful incident, Mr. Gattefosse devoted his career to studying the benefits of essential oil. Shortly thereafter, aromatherapy grew in popularity and was used in World War 1
to heal the wounds of fallen soldiers.
Nowadays, we have many ways enjoy the benefits of aromatherapy
and essential oils. Thankfully, we don’t have to go into the woods and collect tree branches and flowers – we can purchase essential oils that are ready to use, in a variety of forms. During a simple trip to the grocery store, we see it everywhere: in candles, sprays, bath salts
, lotions, and medicine.
Essential oils are oils made from the leaves and flowers of plants. You can buy bath products or home fragrances containing the oils, or you can purchase the oils on their own. Each oil has its own, unique healing properties. Once you know the benefits of each essential oil, you can use them to your full advantage.
As our friend Rene Gattefosse can tell you, Lavender essential oil
is known as a powerful antiseptic, soothing cuts and burns. Lavender also has a calming effect and is a wonderful stress-reliever. Lavender is also known to diminish the pain of migraine and common headaches.
We’ve all smelled the sweet, pleasant scent of Eucalyptus trees. Eucalyptus is much more than a pretty scent, however: as an essential oil, Eucalyptus is used to clear sinus passages during a bout of the common cold or flu. It is often used in combination with Peppermint essential oil, which is also known to clear nasal passages, the throat and the lungs. Peppermint is also rejuvenating and uplifting.
Geranium essential oil has many uses and applications. Geranium oil is a perfect treatment for many skin conditions and is one of the few treatments that help both oily and dry skin. Geranium gently opens the pores, clarifies and cleans the skin while acting as a moisturizer. When used as an air freshener, it is known to balance and calm us.
You don’t need to set yourself on fire to reap the benefits of aromatherapy. Take some time and find the essential oils
that are right for you!