The 6 Best Essential Oils for Relieving Anxiety: Benefits, Uses, Recipes, and Precautions

About 40 million people in the United States alone suffer from anxiety disorders. At its core, anxiety is an emotion involving fear, apprehension, nervousness, and the anticipation that something bad might happen. While these are things that occur in the mind, anxiety also translates to physical symptoms like increased heart rate and sweating.

Anxiety is a natural response to certain triggers. Not only is it natural, it was also actually necessary for survival. Our early human ancestors were likely able to avoid attacks by predators due to their “flight-or-fight” response, which dictates the body’s reaction to imminent danger.

Of course, predators are no longer a concern for most modern humans. Nowadays, things like work, school, and other stressors can trigger anxiety attacks as well, though they are hardly life-or-death situations.

When you have a disproportionate reaction to a certain event or stressor, you may have an anxiety disorder. It’s best to make an appointment with a therapist to be sure, but just because you don’t have an official diagnosis doesn’t mean that you can’t find ways to deal with feelings of anxiety.  Aroma Foundry is offering the Calming Collection, an Essential Oil Six-Pack for anxiety. It includes six essential oils, all with properties that can help you relax and ease anxious feelings. If you are a nervous flyer or waiting in line for your job interview, these essential oils are exactly what you would want to have tucked inside your bag.

We did a side-by-side comparison with two of the world's biggest essential oil brands.

 

Essential Oils for Anxiety Relief

All of the oils in the Calming Collection Essential Oil Six-Pack have the ability to help ease anxiety and induce relaxation. There are also a number of ways you can use the oils in order to keep yourself calm and keep symptoms of anxiety at bay. Dealing with anxiety can be difficult, so it’s worth it to try different kinds of remedies.

anxiety reliefLooking for a way to leave your anxieties behind? Find the best essential oils for anxiety relief here.

 

Some essential oils are better than others at relieving anxiety. Of course, these essential oils aren’t good for relieving anxiety alone. They each have a host of other benefits that can also help you deal with a range of different issues.

1. Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender is one of the most versatile herbs, and its essential oil is no different.

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) is known to have many health benefits. It has a long, storied history that stretches back over two thousand years, and ancient civilizations have been found to have used lavender for various purposes. The plant is native to the areas around the Mediterranean Sea, though it has been cultivated in many other parts of the world. It is easy to grow, and sprigs of its purple-blue flowers have been used for sanitation and deodorizing purposes.

Both the plant and lavender oil are versatile, though they may be known for some uses more than others. Lavender essential oil in particular is good for a number of different uses due to its variety of properties. It has antimicrobial, analgesic, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic effects that can help you deal with different issues. Other than those effects, lavender oil also has anxiolytic properties that can help you calm down and relieve symptoms of anxiety. 

Lavender oil has also been found to be able to reduce cortisol, the stress hormone. Stress, in turn, can affect the circulation of blood, but lavender oil can help improve circulation and lower high blood pressure.

One study has found that lavender oil capsules can work just as well as lorazepam, a type of medication that treats anxiety disorders as well as sleep problems. However, the difference is that there is little chance that lavender oil capsules will be addictive to those who take it.

Even the simple inhalation of the aroma of lavender oil can already have soothing effects. You can also apply a few drops of the oil onto your skin, but be careful not to use too much as pure essential oils can be irritating to the skin. If you want to apply more than a few drops of the oil topically, make sure to dilute it in a carrier oil. You also should not ingest pure lavender oil -- or any other essential oil -- in any amount without the supervision of a health professional.

Learn more about lavender essential oil benefits 

2. Bergamot Essential Oil

It's said that bergamot is a hybrid of bitter orange and lime. Still, however bergamot came to exist, it's known for its citrusy scent and calming properties.

 

Bergamot (Citrus bergamia) is perhaps best known for its fragrance. It is a fruit plant that resulted from the cross-breeding between lemon and bitter orange. The plant originated from Southeast Asia, though it has also been cultivated in Italy. In fact, the name “bergamot” comes from Bergamo, a city in Italy’s Calabria region.

Interestingly, it can take about 100 bergamot oranges in order to produce all of three ounces of bergamot oil. That can come up to just about six bottles of the oil. Fortunately, the effort it takes to produce the oil is well worth it. Bergamot essential oil has many beneficial active compounds, including linalool and linalyl acetate. It also has extremely effective analgesic, antispasmodic, antibacterial, and antiseptic properties.

While these are beneficial properties that lend bergamot oil many abilities and uses, another important thing about the oil is that it can also be soothing. Thus, it can be a great tool against anxiety and its symptoms.

Researchers have found that using bergamot oil is a great way to help decrease heart rate, given that increased heart rate is a symptom of anxiety. It has also been found that bergamot oil has anxiolytic effects comparable to those of diazepam, a type of medication known to induce calmness in those who take it. Other than that, bergamot oil was also found to be able to reduce the production of corticosterone, a hormone involved in inducing stress responses.

Thus, if you have an anxiety disorder, or if you feel like you have a disproportionate response to stressful situations, bergamot oil may be able to help you. You can enjoy the effects of bergamot oil through the inhalation of its aroma, and you can also apply it topically onto your skin. However, make sure that you dilute the oil with a carrier oil before you use it topically. You also should not ingest in the oil in any amount, big or small, without the guidance of a health professional.

Learn more about bergamot essential oil beneifts.

 

3. Ylang Ylang Essential Oil

ylang ylangThe name "ylang ylang" is derived from the old Tagalog term for "flower of flowers." Photo by Karen Blix/Flickr

 

Ylang ylang (Cananga odorata) is a tropical tree that produces yellow flowers. The tree originated from Indonesia, though it eventually spread to other countries in Southeast Asia and the South Pacific. It is perhaps best known for its flowers, which are in turn best known for their sweet, delicate fragrance. Because of this fragrance, the flowers are used in making cosmetics and perfumes.

However, the best uses for ylang ylang aren’t purely for cosmetic purposes. Its essential oil, which is extracted from the flowers, is known for its fragrance as well as its medicinal and calming properties. Ylang ylang essential oil is full of potent active compounds, such as methyl benzoate, linalool, and sesquiterpenes, the last of which refer to compounds involved in the oil’s fragrance as well as its medicinal capabilities.

Ylang ylang oil is antiseptic and can also lower high blood pressure. It has also been proven to be able to help regulate the production of sebum, which in turn can help you have healthier skin and hair. Of course, ylang ylang oil is also known for being able to reduce stress, depression, and anxiety while inducing calmness as well.

Researchers also found that if you use ylang-ylang oil along with lavender and bergamot oil, you can reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and ease hypertension. Thus, ylang ylang’s reputation for being associated with optimism and calmness does indeed have a very strong basis.

The best ways to use ylang ylang oil is topically or through aromatherapy. You can also simply inhale its aroma right out of the bottle. While ylang-ylang oil has been found to be generally safe to use in proper amounts, it’s still best to be careful when using it undiluted on your skin. If you plan to use more than a few drops of the oil on your skin, it may be best to dilute the oil in a carrier oil like coconut or olive oil.

Learn more about ylang ylang essential oil benefits.

 

4. Lemongrass Essential Oil

lemongrassLemongrass is a perennial plant that has about 55 different varieties. Each variety has great culinary, medicinal, and many other beneficial properties.

 

Lemongrass (Cymbopogon flexuosus) is a tall grass that grows mainly in tropical and subtropical regions. You’ll commonly find them in countries like India, Malaysia, Cambodia, China, and Sri Lanka. The culinary traditions of these countries feature lemongrass in a variety of dishes, most especially curries. You’ll also be able to find the peeled stems of the grass in supermarkets, though leaves themselves are commonly used in cooking. However, the plant goes farther than lending flavor to food. It also has uses in herbal medicine, skin care, and repelling insects.

In India, people take fresh lemongrass leaves, crush them, and soak them in water used for washing hair and flushing toilets. The plant has a fresh, lemony scent that works well as a deodorizer and air freshener. Lemongrass is also known to be an effective insect repellent, because its distinctive smell can confuse the olfactory senses of various insects, particularly mosquitoes.

This scent also features prominently in lemongrass oil. Lemongrass essential oil can be effective in relieving many types of body pain, and it has also been used as a prominent ingredient in insect repellents as well. Among those and many other uses, lemongrass oil has also been found to be able to help manage symptoms of anxiety and stress, and it can induce sleep as well.

Sleep is an important factor in managing anxiety. Anxiety can often lead to sleep deprivation, while sleep deprivation can also lead to a poorer ability to handle stressful situations. Thus, lemongrass oil can help beat this vicious cycle because it can help manage both problems. Using lemongrass oil in this situation is a lot like hitting two birds with one stone.

It’s best to dilute any amount of lemongrass oil if you intend to use it topically. It may also disrupt the effects of medications for diabetes and hypertension.

Learn more about lemongrass essential oil benefits.

 

5. Patchouli Essential Oil

patchouliPatchouli plants grow in warm, tropical climates, but they thrive away from direct sunlight. Photo by Forest and Kim Starr

 

Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin or Pogostemon patchouli) is a plant that’s commonly found in Southeast Asia and other tropical regions. Though patchouli oil is often associated with hippies and the groovy 1960s, it actually has a much longer history. Ancient Romans used patchouli oil to stimulate appetite, while East Asian civilizations also used it to help treat issues like dermatitis, acne, and dandruff.

Europeans also considered patchouli oil to be a very valuable trade commodity, so much so that it was worth as much as gold. In 19th century India, meanwhile, patchouli oil functioned as a moth repellent for fabrics and clothes. Eventually, the scent of patchouli oil became an indicator that fabric and garment exports from Asia did, in fact, come from Asia.

In more modern times, patchouli oil features in a wide range of products, like incense, perfumes, and personal care products.

Of course, patchouli essential oil isn’t just fragrant. It also has antidepressant, diuretic, astringent, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory properties that enable it to have many other benefits. Some of these benefits can help manage symptoms of anxiety as well as emotional stress.

Patchouli oil is one of the more common essential oils used in aromatherapy. Its aroma can stimulate the production of serotonin and dopamine -- hormones that regulate mood and the brain’s reward centers. With the presence of these hormones, symptoms of anxiety and depression may be able to disappear.

In general, patchouli oil is safe to inhale or apply topically. However, you should avoid using the oil in amounts more than those recommended. Still, if you have sensitive skin, it’s best to dilute the oil with a carrier oil. You can first apply the oil to a small patch of skin on your arm or leg and wait for a few minutes to see how your skin would react. This way, you’ll be able to avoid adverse reactions to the oil.

Learn more about patchouli essential oil benefits.

 

6. Mandarin Essential Oil

mandarinMandarin oranges have a thinner peel than many other citrus plants, making it easier to get to the flesh.

 

Mandarin oranges (Citrus reticulata) have been around for thousands of years, having been first cultivated in China and Japan. Mandarin oil has also been used for a long time, going back to 400 AD. The plant also made its way from East Asia to Europe, particularly Italy, which has become one of the biggest producers of mandarin oil.

Unsurprisingly, mandarin oranges were used for traditional medicine in China, India, and Europe. According to traditional medicine, the peel of an unripe mandarin orange can treat a wide range of conditions, from hiccups to gastrointestinal disorders and liver cirrhosis. Mandarin essential oil, meanwhile, can help fight microbes, treat digestive problems, ease muscle spasms, and more.

Of course, mandarin oil has also been found to be able to help manage the symptoms of anxiety. It has sedative properties that can calm not just anxiety and stress, but convulsions and epilepsy as well. Thus, if you’re experiencing particularly bad anxiety symptoms, mandarin oil may be a good choice if you’re looking for something to help you calm down.

Mandarin oil can also help you get over insomnia. Insomnia or trouble sleeping can be a problem in itself, but it can also be linked to anxiety and stress. Anxiety over something can affect sleep, which can then lead to more anxiety when sleeplessness begins to affect you in various ways. Thus, mandarin oil can allow you to deal with these problems in a natural way that doesn’t require medication.

Make sure to dilute mandarin oil before using it topically. Remember that it’s also best if you do not go out into the sunlight after using the oil topically, as this may cause a negative reaction. However, you can also use mandarin oil in aromatherapy or as an ingredient in various concoctions you can make with essential oils.

Learn more about mandarin essential oil benefits.

Aroma Foundry Calming Collection

Precautions

Even though the best essential oils are all-natural and come from verifiably good sources, that does not mean that you can use them in any amount you may deem suitable. As a general rule, it’s unsafe to use more essential oil than recommended or necessary. The aroma of some oils may become too strong and overwhelming if you use too much, and you should also apply no more than a few drops of essential oil onto your skin to prevent negative effects.

If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, it’s best to avoid using essential oils. While there is little evidence that essential oils are unsafe for pregnant women to use, there is also little evidence that it is safe. Thus, it’s best to avoid essential oils while pregnant until more conclusive information is available.

You also should not use oils on very young children, as their bodies have not yet developed enough to withstand the more potent effects of the oils.

Certain essential oils may also interfere with certain medications. If you have a health condition and are taking medication for it, you should first consult your doctor if you can safely use essential oils.

 

How to Use Essential Oils for Anxiety Relief

anxiety reliefThere are a lot of ways you can use essential oils to induce calmness and help yourself relax.

 

While every oil in this Six-Pack can work individually to help relieve anxiety, you can also have fun with discovering how they can work with each other. Each oil in the package has been chosen for their abilities to help manage anxiety, but they also have many distinct characteristics. Thus, this Six-Pack isn’t just for anxiety, but it can also provide you some relief for a wide range of other problems and issues as well.

Take a look at the recipes below to see how you can mix and match the oils in the Six-Pack for the best results possible.

 

Calming Aromatherapy Blend

Aromatherapy is one of the best ways to fully enjoy the effects of essential oils. With the right combination of oils, you can induce a variety of effects like boosting energy, sharpening focus, and fostering creativity. You just need to make sure that you use oils with properties that can induce your desired effects.

For anxiety relief, you can try out different combinations of oils in our anxiety relief Six-Pack. You can start with this:

  • 4 drops of mandarin essential oil
  • 2 drops of lemongrass essential oil
  • 2 drops of ylang ylang essential oil

Here’s another possible combination:

  • 3 drops patchouli essential oil
  • 5 drops lemongrass essential oil
  • 2 drops ylang ylang essential oil

While you can use a diffuser, you can also go the steam inhalation route. Simply boil a pot of water and pour it into a large bowl. Add the essential oils and inhale the steam.

 

Easy Zen Room Spray

Sometimes, a quick fix for anxiety is necessary. You won’t always have the luxury of a diffuser, and it’s easier to simply spray a mixture around a room. You can mix a few essential oils with water and witch hazel in order to come up with with a room spray that can help you relieve symptoms of anxiety.

You can mix and match different essential oils in the Six-Pack until you come up with a combination you like. Until then, however, you can try this:

  • 6 ounces of distilled water
  • 2 ounces of witch hazel (preferably the paraben-free version)
  • 24 of drops lavender essential oil
  • 12 drops of ylang ylang essential oil
  • 4 drops of bergamot essential oil

Take a glass spray bottle to mix the ingredients in. It’s best to use durable ultraviolet glass bottles, since this type of glass filters ultraviolet and infrared light in while blocking visible light. This can then extend the shelf life of natural products like Aroma Foundry’s essential oils.

If you don’t have a suitable ultraviolet glass spray bottle, you can find one with Infinity Jars.

Once you have a spray bottle, pour in the water first before adding the witch hazel. You can then add the essential oils into the mixture. Screw the cap on and shake the bottle until all the ingredients have mixed together. You can then spray the mixture around the room and wait for its relaxing effects to kick in.

 

Relaxing Essential Oil Roll-On

Essential oils can get a little messy. If, for example, you feel an anxiety attack coming on while you’re in a moving vehicle, uncapping a bottle of essential oil may be a little like tempting fate. One way you can neatly apply your essential oil blend anywhere you are without the risk of a small mess is to use a roller bottle. You can make sure that you won’t use too much, and that the application of essential oils will remain neat.

Here are the things you’ll need:

  • 10 drops of lavender essential oil
  • 7 drops of ylang ylang essential oil
  • 5 drops of patchouli essential oil
  • 3 drops of bergamot essential oil
  • 6 ounces of carrier oil (coconut oil or jojoba oil)

For this recipe, you’ll need an ultraviolet glass roller bottle, preferably with a stainless steel ball roller. The UV glass will protect the contents of the bottle since it keeps harmful visible light from filtering through. This can help extend the shelf life of the contents.

Infinity Jars has exactly the kind of bottle you need. It’s made of UV glass, and its stainless steel ball roller is guaranteed to be protected from the effects of essential oils.

You can now mix all the ingredients in the bottle. Apply the mixture onto your temples, on acupressure points, or any other spots you may think of.

Something you need to remember, however, is that the carrier oil in this recipe is vital. You should not apply more than a few drops of pure and undiluted essential oil onto your skin, as this can cause irritation or dermatitis. Carrier oils make sure that you’ll be able to apply the essential oils onto your skin without problems.

Find the ingredients you need for your recipes from our collection of 100% pure and all-natural essential oils!

 

Summary

Calming Collection Essential Oil Six-Pack

Aroma Foundry’s Essential Oil Six-Pack for anxiety is like a box set of books. Each entry has its own personality, story, and set of characteristics, but they all drive to the same conclusion. There are ones that you like best, and others that you may not be too fond of, but without them the set is incomplete.

And like a good set of books, this Six-Pack is something you’ll keep coming back to.

Immerse yourself in a new world with Aroma Foundry’s Essential Oil Six-Pack for anxiety relief. Anxiety can be a very unpleasant thing, and it can also be quite difficult to deal with. However, with the right blend of essential oils, you’ll be able to find an effective way to keep calm and zen even in the most stressful of times.

Bibliography

  1. Anxiety: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments The Team - https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/info/anxiety
  2. How To Use Essential Oils - A Guide For Beginners https://www.essentialoilhaven.com/how-to-use-essential-oils/#diffuser
  3. Why Lavender Oil Is Superior To Many Prescription Medications https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/lavender-oil.aspx
  4. Herbal Oil: Bergamot Oil Benefits and Uses https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/bergamot-oil.aspx
  5. Herbal Oil: Ylang Ylang Oil Benefits and Uses https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/ylang-ylang-oil.aspx
  6. Herbal Oil: Lemongrass Oil Benefits and Uses https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/lemongrass-oil.aspx
  7. Herbal Oil: Patchouli Oil Benefits and Uses https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/patchouli-oil.aspx
  8. 15 Amazing Benefits Of Patchouli Essential Oil https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/essential-oils/health-benefits-of-patchouli-essential-oil.html
  9. Herbal Oil: Mandarin Orange Oil Benefits and Uses https://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/mandarin-orange-oil.aspx
  10. A multi-center, double-blind, randomised study of the Lavender oil preparation Silexan in comparison to Lorazepam for generalized anxiety disorder Woelk H, Schlafke S - Phytomedicine - 2010
  11. Relaxation effects of lavender aromatherapy improve coronary flow velocity reserve in healthy men evaluated by transthoracic Doppler echocardiography Shiina Y, Funabashi N, Lee K, Toyoda T, Sekine T, Honjo S, Hasegawa R, Kawata T, Wakatsuki Y, Hayashi S, Murakami S, Koike K, Daimon M, Komuro I - International Journal of Cardiology - 2008
  12. Citrus bergamia essential oil: from basic research to clinical application Michele Navarra, Carmen Mannucci, Marisa Delbò, and Gioacchino Calapai - Frontiers in Pharmacology - 2015
  13. Aromatherapy benefits autonomic nervous system regulation for elementary school faculty in Taiwan Kang-Ming Chang, Chuh-We Shen - Evidence-Based Complementary Alternative Medicine - 2011
  14. The effects of the inhalation method using essential oils on blood pressure and stress responses of clients with essential hypertension Hwang JH - Taehan Kanho Hakhoe Chi - 2006
  15. Cymbopogon essential oils: Chemical compositions and bioactivities D. Ganjewala - International Journal of Essential Oil Therapeutics - 2009
View all resources

 

Author Profile

Fagjun Santos is an avid reader who eventually decided to try her hand at writing her own stuff. After spending her teen years writing what can be considered to be Vogon poetry, she now writes things that aren't a pain to read. Her favorite Aroma Foundry scent is peppermint, with lavender coming in a close second.

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