Use Basil essential oil whenever you need a lift in aromatherapy, cooking delicious meals, and disinfecting surfaces or spaces. Learn more about how you can make the most out of this versatile oil in this article.
- Brief History
- Benefits and Uses
- Improves Skin and Hair
- Excellent Insect Repellent
- Air Freshener
- Improves Digestion
- Antibacterial and Antifungal
- Helps Treat Urinary Tract Infections
- Cold and Flu Treatment
- Provides Wound Relief and Prevents Infections
- Provides Pain Relief
- Muscle Relaxant
- Relieves Anxiety and Provides Emotional Benefits
- Flavor Enhancer
- For Oral Health
- How to Use Basil Essential Oil
Brief History of Basil Essential Oil
Basil essential oil is most popular in Southeast Asia, Central Asia and Europe. The basil plant is also considered sacred in India as it is such an amazing source of antioxidants, antibacterial agents, and anti-inflammatory compounds. It is also used extensively in Mediterranean cuisine, such as in making pesto, pasta and salads.
In history, Basil was used in Ayurvedic medicine to treat cough, constipation, indigestion, diarrhea and skin illnesses.
Fresh basil herbs are used widely, but some find that the essential oil is much more effective in flavoring as it is more concentrated and potent. The oil is also much more powerful than the leaves for medicinal uses in respiratory, muscular, and joint support.
The medicinal parts of the basil plant are the leaves and the seeds. Basil essential oil is steam distilled from fresh basil leaves, stems and flowers to form an extract that contains high levels of antioxidants and other beneficial phytochemicals. This makes it much more beneficial than fresh or dried leaves alone.
In history, Basil was used in Ayurvedic medicine to treat cough, constipation, indigestion, diarrhea and skin illnesses. In the 16th century, the leaves were used to treat migraines and chest infections due to its natural anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibiotic and diuretic properties.
In history, basil was used in Ayurvedic medicine to treat cough, constipation, indigestion, diarrhea and skin illnesses. In the 16th century, the leaves were used to treat migraines and chest infections due to its natural anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibiotic and diuretic properties.
Basil essential oil also has proven antioxidant effects that can fight chronic infections and respiratory illnesses like bronchitis. Mixed with other essential oils such as rosemary or eucalyptus, the blend can help stop infections that lead to coughing, swelling and pain. It's strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties can also benefit heart health and cognitive function. It has also been investigated for its properties in reducing cancer cell formation.
Benefits and Uses of Basil Essential Oil
The health benefits of basil essential oil are multifold, including its ability to treat nausea, motion sickness, indigestion, constipation, respiratory problems, and diabetes. Basil oil is also a good source of Vitamin A, magnesium, potassium, iron, and calcium.
Here’s a run-down of some of its characteristics, uses & benefits.
1. Improves Skin and Hair
Basil essential oil is well known in treating symptoms of acne and other skin infections. As skin breakouts are mainly caused by built-up bacteria, excess oil and small infections, basil oil can help with its antibacterial properties. It is used extensively in numerous skin care formulas that are made to improve skin tone. The oil can also be diluted in a carrier oil and massaged onto the skin. It effectively enhances the luster of dull-looking skin and hair.
You can apply basil essential oil with a clean cotton ball. Mix one to two drops of basil oil with coconut or jojoba oil and apply to the affected area once or twice daily.
You can add a drop or two of basil essential oil to your shampoo to strip away excess grease or buildup and add a lustrous quality to your hair . You can also mix it with baking soda and apple cider vinegar to naturally remove bacteria, grease and residue from the hair.
2. Excellent Insect Repellent
The volatile oils found in basil can repel mosquitoes and prevent bug bites, just like citronella oil and thyme oil. To make a homemade bug spray or lotion, dilute several drops of Basil essential oil with a carrier oil and massage into skin, or on swollen bites as needed. Basil is also excellent in treating itchiness from mosquito bites and stings. It is also known as a treatment for snake bites.
3. Air Freshener
The word basil is derived from a Greek term which means “to smell.” In India and the Mediterranean, Basil essential oil has been used for many culinary applications, including eliminating odors and cleaning kitchen equipment. Basil can effectively eliminate odor-causing bacteria and mold from your home, car, appliances and furniture. If you want to do this at home, you can run several drops through your kitchen appliances, or add it to your dish washing soap. You can also combine it with baking soda to remove stains and bacteria from pots or pans; or spray it inside your toilet, shower and garbage cans.
4. Improves Digestion
Basil is well known as a digestive tonic to help treat several digestion problems. It is used to reduce indigestion, constipation, stomach cramps and excess gas. It can also be used to alleviate lower bowel pain by providing immediate relief from gas in the stomach and intestines. Basil essential oil can also naturally relieve constipation.
Since Basil essential oil is a diuretic, it helps increase the production of urine, thus reducing water retention and uncomfortable bloating. It also has antispasmodic properties which can reduce cramps associated with PMS, stomach illness or food poisoning.
The essential oil can also be used to prevent vomiting, particularly when the source of the nausea is motion sickness.
Pure basil oil can be taken internally by adding one to two drops to warm water or tea. You can also inhale it or massage it directly onto painful areas such as the abdomen and lower back. Do take note that you shouldn’t ingest basil oil directly as it can be dangerous.
5. Antibacterial and Antifungal
Basil essential oil has been proven to be extremely effective against microbes, food borne bacteria, yeasts and mold. In laboratory research findings, it was found to inhibit the growth of six forms of bacteria and three strains of fungi. It can also be used to clean and treat wounds (more on this below). Moreover, it can prevent viral infections that enter the body through cuts or wounds.
You can use Basil essential oil in your home to remove bacteria from kitchens and bathrooms, prevent contamination, and purify the air. You can make a highly effective antibacterial spray by combining Basil essential oil with water in a spray bottle. You can then use this to spray and wipe down surfaces in your home.
6. Helps Treat Urinary Tract Infections
Basil essential oil helps remedy urinary tract and bladder infections. The antibacterial, antiviral and disinfectant properties of this essential oil are known to be effective against bacterial infections. Add two drops of Basil essential oil made for internal use together with an herbal tea recipe (see below) to help detoxify the urinary and digestive tracts. This can also speed up the healing process of painful infections.
7. Cold and Flu Treatment
Basil can help remove bacteria and viruses from the body while fighting inflammation, pain and fatigue. It is also regarded as a go-to natural cold and fever remedy. You can relieve the symptoms of your cold or flu by diffusing Basil oil or adding one or two drops to a hot bath. You can also make a very potent homemade vapor rub by mixing it with eucalyptus essential oil (make sure that you dissolve it with a carrier oil) and massage it onto the chest to open up nasal passages and provide relief.
As it is an antispasmodic, Basil essential oil is also frequently used to treat the symptoms of whooping cough, asthma, bronchitis and sinus infections.
8. Provides Wound Relief and Prevents Infections
Basil oil helps in treating skin cuts, wounds and infections as it is a great antibacterial and antiviral agent. It’s a good idea to include a bottle of Basil essential oil in your home medical kit.
9. Provides Pain Relief
Basil essential oil is also an analgesic which provides relief from pain. This is why the multifunctional oil is used frequently in the treatment of injuries, burns, bruises and surgical recovery.
10. Muscle Relaxant
You can make a relaxing muscle balm by mixing a few drops of basil essential oil with a carrier oil (such as coconut oil) and rubbing it into fatigued or aching muscles. Painful or swollen muscles and joints will greatly benefit from this treatment.
You can also take a hot bath with Epsom salts, Basil essential oil and Lavender essential oil. Soaking in this bath will provide instant relief, and also help relax tense areas that result from an intense workout.
11. Relieves Anxiety and Provides Emotional Benefits
Basil has a deep, warm and spicy aroma that has been widely used in aromatherapy for centuries. It is well known to reduce anxiety, fear, nervousness and tension. This essential oil, when diluted and applied to the temples and back of the neck, can greatly help both mind and body. The oil’s calming qualities make it perfect to reduce overwhelmed emotions, stress, and fatigue. It may even help a person in their efforts to overcome an addiction. Regularly using this essential oil provides mental strength and clarity.
Basil essential oil is called the oil that "uplifts and renews.” You can diffuse it in your home to deal with stressful situations, or to relax and unwind. This can also work quickly as a natural headache relief. Massage one or two drops with a carrier oil onto your feet or over your adrenals every night.
12. Flavor Enhancer
Basil leaves have been frequently associated with Italian cooking. The highly potent oil can also be used in recipes instead of fresh or dried basil leaves. Try adding one or two drops to your recipes and taste the difference!
It has also been studied that significant doses of Basil oil are able to protect against colitis and ulcer damage. Use 1 – 3 drops of basil oil in place of fresh or dried herbs in your favorite recipes.
Note: Make sure that you’re only using pure, high quality, and therapeutic-grade Basil essential oil in food recipes to ensure safety and efficacy. Do not use synthetically made essential oils or synthetic fragrances in cooking.
13. For Oral Health
Basil essential oil was part of a clinical trial on oral health mouth rinses last 2014. Basil, together with tea tree oil and clove in a mouth rinse was found to inhibit gingivitis, plaque and other harmful microbes in the mouth.
How To Use Basil Essential Oil
1. Sore Muscles: Mix a few drops of basil essential oil with a carrier oil. Apply to sore or fatigued muscle and joints for relief.
2. Aromatically: Diffuse or apply topically to support clear breathing.
3. Insect Repellent: Add a few drops of basil essential oil to your linen spray and spritz over your beddings and curtains at night. This will repel mosquitoes and other pests from your sleeping area.
4. Fatigue: Apply on your feet or diffuse aromatically to relieve yourself from fatigue. To experience more relief, inhale the essential oil first and then apply to the crown of the head, forehead, chest and navel.
5. Skin Irritations: Dilute the essential oil with fractionated coconut oil. Apply to the tip of your nose, temples or location of bites and stings.
6. Mental Clarity: Diffuse basil essential oil to focus on studying, reading or working at home.
7. Food:Use 1–3 drops in a recipe instead of using fresh or dried basil leaves for optimum flavor.
8. Menstrual Cramps: Put 1 drop of basil oil in a veggie capsule and take internally to help soothe and relieve cramps during a menstrual cycle.
9. Emotional Wellness: Use aromatically with an oil diffuser or massage over the heart and solar plexus to lessen feelings of fear.
10. Mouth Cleanser and Breath Freshener: There are commercial toothpaste and mouthwash products that contain basil essential oil, but you can also make one for yourself at home. Add a few drops of basil essential oil to a cup of water for gargling. You can also mix 1 – 2 drops of essential oil to your toothpaste or mouthwash for optimum oral hygiene and fresh breath.
11. Acne Treatment: Add a drop or two of basil oil to your toner and apply with a cotton swab to problem areas. You can also use coconut oil as a carrier oil for your basil essential oil and apply on your face to help clear bacteria that clog pores.
Note: Basil essential oil should always be mixed with a carrier oil like coconut oil or jojoba oil. If you’re going to apply topically, dilute first before applying to areas such as the face, neck, etc.
Basil Essential Oil Precautions
Consult a health care practitioner first before using basil essential oil alongside with your medication or treatment.
1. Patch Testing: Make sure you do a patch test on your skin for sensitivity prior to using on more areas of your body or for a long term period. Make sure to do the patch test on your feet or forearm to ensure you don’t experience irritation like redness, burning, hives or allergic reactions. Keep the Basil oil away from your eyes and the insides of your ears or nose.
2. Pregnant or Breastfeeding Women: Basil essential oil should be avoided by pregnant or breastfeeding women as it can have an impact on hormonal levels, muscle condition, or nerve functioning. It’s also not appropriate for anyone with epilepsy.
3. Infants and Children: Keep out of reach from children. Avoid using the essential oil on infants and young children.
4. Cooking Recipes: Make sure that you’re only using pure, high quality, and therapeutic-grade essential oils in food recipes to ensure safety and efficacy. Do not use synthetically made essential oils or synthetic fragrances in cooking.
5. Blending with other Essential Oils: Basil essential oil blends well with other essential oils, including the following: Bergamot, Cypress, Cedarwood, Fennel, Geranium, Helichrysum, Grapefruit, Lavender, Lemongrass, Lemon, Peppermint, Rosemary and White Fir.
Basil Essential Oil Recipes
Here are some great recipes you can try at home using Basil. From aromatherapy blends to pick-me-up solutions, you can incorporate Basil essential oil to your daily living.
- 2 cups of filtered water
- 1 cup of organic distilled white vinegar
- 20+ drops of lemon essential oil
- 15+ drops of basil essential oil
Combine all ingredients in a glass spray bottle and use as needed for household cleaning. Works well on windows and stainless steel, as well as flat surfaces like tile and counters.
Customize essential oils to your preference by adding more, less or even omitting completely. The vinegar smell will disappear once the spray dries and only a faint scent of lemon and basil will remain.
- 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
- 1 cup of water
- 2 drops of Basil essential oil
Add 1 tablespoon of basil leaves to a teacup. Bring one cup of water to a boil and pour into the cup. Cover and allow it to infuse for 10 minutes. Strain the leaves and add 2 drops of basil essential oil that is permitted for internal use (check the label). Drink 3 cups a day for 14 days. After that, stop drinking for one week and start again for another 2 weeks.
Add these essential oils to a diffuser whenever you need a boost:
- Basil: 8 drops
- Orange: 9 drops
- Peppermint: 4 drops
- Rosemary: 4 drops
Add the following essential oils to help you focus on your study time:
- Lemon: 3 drops
- Basil: 3 drops
- Rosemary: 2 drops
For an invigorating aroma that will improve, stimulate and refresh your mood, add the following essential oils to a diffuser.
- Basil: 2 drops
- Lime: 2 drops
- Bergamot: 2 drops
Whenever you feel tired or lethargic, add the following essential oils to a diffuser to increase your energy levels:
- Basil: 4 drops
- Grapefruit: 5 drops
- Rosemary: 2 drops
- Lavender: 3 drops
- 3 teaspoons of carrier oil (jojoba or coconut)
- 7 - 8 drops of basil essential oil
Instructions:In a bottle or dish, add the basil essential oil first, and then pour in the required amount of carrier oil. Mix well before use.
- 2 drops of Basil essential oil
- 5 drops Geranium essential oil
- 5 drops Bergamot essential oil
- 25 ml sweet almond oil
Instructions: Pour 25 ml of sweet almond oil in a glass bottle. Add the above essential oils to the almond oil. Apply to your torso and extremities after an intense workout, or whenever you need an energy boost.
Check out a variety of essential oils you can use in these recipes here in Our Shop
Using Basil Essential Oil as a natural antibacterial agent helps us combat harmful bacteria without having to experience the side effects of over-the-counter synthetic drugs. It is also advisable that we use natural products such as Basil because overly using antibiotics could lead to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Going for natural healing can promote overall health and holistic well-being in the long run.
To cap it all off, Basil, just like other powerful essential oils, have a wide variety of uses and benefits that you can take advantage of. Nature has indeed given us great blessings to help heal, renew, and enlighten ourselves. Keep a bottle of Basil Essential Oil at home and take note of its benefits. You can also print out this resource as a reference whenever you have a particular issue that Basil can help remedy.
- 10 Basil Essential Oil Uses and Benefits | Essential Oil Sanctuary - http://essentialoilsanctuary.com/10-basil-essential-oil-uses-benefits-plus-10-recipes-tips/
- 10 Recipes with Basil Essential Oil – Ocimum basilicum. Suzanne R. Banks - https://suzannerbanks.blog/2014/03/05/10-recipes-with-basil-ocimum-basilicum/
- 11 Amazing Benefits Of Basil Essential Oil | Organic Facts - https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/basil-essential-oil.html
- Herbs and Spices in Cancer Prevention and Treatment. Christine Kaefer - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK92774/
- Lemon Basil Natural Cleaning Spray | Wellness Mama. Katie - https://wellnessmama.com/24566/natural-cleaning-spray/
- Mucoid Pseudomonas and the Cystic Fibrosis Lung. N Russell - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2502454
- Urinary Tract Infection Remedies & Causes | The Green Healer - https://thegreenhealer.com/Natural_Cures/Urinary_Tract_Infection
- Uses for Basil Essential Oil: Stop Inflammation, Bacteria, & Mosquitoes | Dr. Ericz - https://drericz.com/uses-for-basil-essential-oil/