Top 6 Essential Oils for Motion Sickness: Travel Essentials for Ease and Comfort (Updated 2020)

Beautiful weather, clear skies, and fresh, crisp air⁠—summertime means funtime! It means hitting the open road and traveling to far-off summer destinations. 

For most people, this is the best time to go on an hours-long trip on a plane, car, or boat. But for some cursed with motion sickness, this can be a sweet yet nightmarish disposition.

With the best essential oils for motion sickness in your travel purse, there won’t be any need to pull over. While these essential oils do not cure car sickness completely, they’re great for helping relieve and prevent any symptoms! Enjoy the journey ahead with the Car-Omatherapy 6-Pack.

Quick Rundown: 6 Best Essential Oils for Motion Sickness
Spearmint Essential Oil is known for its cool, refreshing scent that can help you breathe better and in turn, ease your nausea.
Eucalyptus Essential Oil can alleviate headaches caused by motion sickness and re-energize you during long journeys.
Grapefruit Essential Oil has properties that help prevent nausea and treat other motion sickness symptoms, among many other ailments.
Lemon Essential Oil has an invigorating, mood-boosting scent that can ease dizziness, nausea, and vomiting.
Mandarin Essential Oil has a sweet, citrusy scent that helps relieve nausea as well as stress and anxiety.
Rosemary Essential Oil offers an herbaceous fragrance that helps ease headaches, dizziness, and other motion sickness symptoms.


All About Motion Sickness

Before you get to know more about the best essential oils for motion sickness, let’s find out what causes motion sickness and what its symptoms are. This way, you can better understand how to deal with your queasy stomach while traveling.

What Is Motion Sickness?

Motion sickness, as the phrase suggests, is a nauseous or dizzy feeling caused by movement. It is often triggered by trips on cars, planes, boats, trains, and other modes of transport. Theme park rides, such as roller coasters and orbiters, and even 3D movies, video games, and virtual reality simulators can also cause motion sickness. 

While motion sickness isn’t fatal, it can turn your supposedly fun travels into not-so-comfortable ones. But it typically stops once the movement stops.

Motion sickness is common among children, elderly, pregnant women, and people with migraines. Some underlying conditions, such as inner ear problems and Parkinson’s disease, can also cause people to experience motion sickness.


Why do we experience motion sickness? Well, motion sickness, in a nutshell, happens when the central nervous system gets conflicting messages between what you see and what you feel. 

If you’re sitting in the backseat of a car, for instance, your body feels upward, downward, and sideways motions. Your eyes, meanwhile, see a steady chair in front and perceive the sense that you aren’t moving. This contradicting sensory message sends mixed signals to the brain, thus causing motion sickness.


The common symptoms of motion sickness include: 

  • Malaise
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Paleness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Drowsiness

It is, without a doubt, a totally unpleasant experience! Luckily, you can use essential oils for motion sickness to help alleviate these symptoms.


6 Best Essential Oils for Motion Sickness

If you love to travel but despise the frequent bouts of nausea, you might want to try some of the best natural remedies for motion sickness: essential oils. Read on and find out the top six essential oils for dizziness, nausea, and other motion sickness symptoms:


1. Spearmint Essential Oil

Spearmint oil is one of the best essential oils for nausea. Since it contains menthol, it can help you breathe better, which in turn can help relieve nausea caused by motion sickness. Plus, spearmint’s menthol scent, cooling sensation, and antispasmodic property can ease your upset stomach.

Spearmint Essential Oil

Breathe better and relieve nausea with the refreshing scent of spearmint essential oil.

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Known as the gentler mint, spearmint essential oil contains less menthol content and smells a lot less strong than peppermint oil. It’s ideal for essential oil enthusiasts who find the scent of peppermint essential oil too intense for their liking. Most importantly, it’s a safer choice of essential oil to use around young children than peppermint.

Learn more about the benefits of spearmint essential oil.

2. Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Like spearmint essential oil, eucalyptus oil is widely known for its cooling quality and ability to ease physical aches, including headaches. For those suffering from headaches caused by motion sickness, this is your best go-to essential oil.

Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Restore your energy and ease headaches caused by motion sickness with eucalyptus essential oil.

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Feeling drowsy because of car sickness? The fresh scent of eucalyptus essential oil can rejuvenate and energize you! This is especially helpful for drivers who need to stay awake and alert for safer trips. 

While drivers aren’t generally prone to motion sickness, many can still get car sick during long road trips. So if you need a natural pick-me-up and car sickness remedy while driving, eucalyptus essential oil is your perfect travel buddy.

Learn more about the benefits of eucalyptus essential oil.


3. Grapefruit Essential Oil

Most people use grapefruit oil to relieve stress and fatigue, which is great for long drives. But did you know that grapefruit oil can also be used for helping prevent nausea? 

Grapefruit Essential Oil

Avoid nausea and other motion sickness symptoms with the energy-boosting grapefruit essential oil.

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Grapefruit essential oil can help treat a variety of ailments, one of which is motion sickness. This essential oil for car sickness not only gives drivers an energy boost during long journeys, but it can also help travelers avoid nausea.

Learn more about the benefits of grapefruit essential oil.


4. Lemon Essential Oil

Feeling queasy during your journey? Lemon oil can make your trip easy peasy lemon squeezy.

Lemon Essential Oil

Relieve motion sickness and improve mental alertness with the invigorating scent of lemon essential oil.

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Lemon essential oil, along with its uplifting, invigorating scent, has properties that can ease dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. 

But it isn’t only a great travel essential for passengers⁠—drivers can also benefit from this essential oil for car sickness! 

This essential oil for dizziness and other motion sickness symptoms can improve focus and mental alertness. Moreover, it can serve as a natural mood-booster if you’re feeling cranky during long journeys⁠, especially if you’re prone to road rage!

With lemon essential oil, you can safely drive from point A to point B in one piece.

Learn more about the benefits of lemon essential oil.


5. Mandarin Essential Oil

Fresh, citrusy, and sweet⁠—mandarin oil can calm your stomach just like how sweet sugary drinks do. The difference is that mandarin essential oil is all-natural, and it isn’t meant to be drunk (no matter how tempting it might be!).

Mandarin Essential Oil

Ease your queasiness while relieving stress and nausea with mandarin essential oil.

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Like lemon essential oil, mandarin offers an uplifting scent that can relieve stress, anxiety, and even nausea. One of the best essential oils for nausea, mandarin is a great natural remedy for motion sickness.

Learn more about the benefits of mandarin essential oil.

6. Rosemary Essential Oil

Migraine, weakness, and dizziness are some of the things you might feel when you get car sick, and these symptoms can unfailingly make one miserable. Fortunately, rosemary oil is here to save the day.

Rosemary Essential Oil

Make an unpleasant road trip a whole lot better and relieve motion sickness symptoms with the energizing scent of rosemary oil.

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This essential oil for motion sickness can help alleviate fatigue, headaches, dizziness, and even depression. With its energizing, herbaceous aroma, it’s no wonder why rosemary is one of the most useful essential oils for car sickness. It not only helps make the symptoms go away⁠—it also helps you turn that frown upside down while dealing with the otherwise unpleasant situation!

Learn more about the benefits of rosemary essential oil.

How to Use Essential Oils for Motion Sickness

Whether you got sick from a road trip, long flight, or a boat ride, essential oils for motion sickness are here to the rescue. But how can you use these natural remedies for motion sickness while traveling?

Topical Blend

The easiest way to use essential oils for dizziness and other motion sickness symptoms is to dilute them in a carrier oil and pour them into an airtight, travel-friendly glass roller bottle


Creating a roller blend for traveling can make it a lot easy for you to deal with motion sickness. You can bring it anywhere you go! Simply pull it out of your bag once you start feeling sick, dab it a few times on your skin, and let the soothing fragrance waft around you throughout your trip.

What You’ll Need:

  • 10mL travel-friendly roller bottle
  • 3 of the abovementioned essential oils for motion sickness
  • Carrier oil of your choice

Add 3 drops of each of your chosen essential oils to your bottle. Then, fill the bottle with a carrier oil and shake it well.

Inhaler Blend

Another easy way to use essential oils for motion sickness is to make an inhaler blend out of them. Like a topical blend, you can easily chuck your aromatherapy inhaler in your pocket or travel bag, pull it out, and smell the refreshing blend whenever, wherever.

What You’ll Need:

  • Essential oil inhaler
  • Small glass dish
  • Tweezers
  • 7 drops of eucalyptus essential oil
  • 5 drops of spearmint essential oil
  • 3 drops of rosemary essential oil
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Add the essential oils to the glass dish. With the use of tweezers, roll the cotton wick of your inhaler on the dish to absorb the oils. Then, put the wick in the inhaler using your tweezers. Lastly, seal the cap back on the bottom of your inhaler.

To use this blend, remove the inhaler cover, place the inhaler near your nose, and inhale.

Relaxing Spray Mist

Still feeling a bit woozy after a day’s journey? Then spray your hotel room or pillow with a relaxing spray mist.

A spray made with essential oils for motion sickness is pretty versatile and easy to bring anywhere. Bring this handy blend in your travel purse, and you can easily mist your car, room, or on a travel pillow with soothing fragrance to ease your nausea. You can even spray it on a DIY hanging car air freshener, but we’ll get to that later.

What You’ll Need:

  • Glass spray bottle
  • 1 ounce of distilled water
  • 3 drops of lemon essential oil
  • 2 drops of grapefruit essential oil
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Pour the distilled water in your spray bottle. Then, add the essential oils and place the cap back on the bottle. Shake the mixture well before use. 


Hanging Air Freshener

Finding the perfect hanging air freshener for your car can get tiresome. It takes trial and error before ending up with that right scent that is neither too dizzying nor too mild.

But have you ever thought of making your own hanging air freshener with essential oils for car sickness?

It’s easy, fun, and customizable to boot. You can choose the essential oils to blend the perfect car freshener scent. Or if you’re not quite sure which essential oil to use, you can also simply follow the recipe below.

What You’ll Need:

  • Ribbon or string
  • Felt
  • Hole punch
  • Scissors
  • Glass spray bottle or a glass dish and a paintbrush
  • 1 ounce of distilled water
  • 3 drops of lemon essential oil
  • 2 drops of grapefruit or mandarin essential oil

First, cut your felt material to the size and shape you want. Then, punch a hole at the top of the material. Next, thread the ribbon through that hole and make a knot to secure it.

Tip: If you want to craft several car freshener blends with different essential oils for car sickness, choose the color and shape of your felt fabric that is reminiscent of each of those scents. In this case, you might want to use yellow felt for the lemon and green felt for its leaves, then cut the material to the shapes of both these elements.


There are two ways to put the essential oil blend on your hanging air freshener:

  1. Make a spray blend. If you’ve already made a relaxing spray mist blend just like the one mentioned previously, you can simply spray that on your hanging car air freshener. If not, just add water and essential oils in your glass spray bottle and mix well. Then, spray an even coat on the felt material and let it dry.
  2. Blend the ingredients in a dish. Pour an ounce of water in the dish and add the essential oils. Dip the paintbrush in the mixture and stir. Then, using that paintbrush, spread the essential oil blend on the felt material.

If you’re going with the second option, you’ll most probably want to reuse the blend once your hanging air freshener loses its scent. For this reason, you might want to choose a lightproof glass dish with a cover that can protect your essential oil blend against both air and sunlight.

Soothing Jar Air Freshener

Not a fan of a hanging car air freshener? Then make your own air freshener with essential oils for car sickness in a jar.

Having a jar air freshener is super convenient. If you need to relieve your queasiness, then you just have to remove the cover and release the soothing fragrance. Or, if you don’t want to smell your air freshener any longer, simply put the cover back on and open the car windows.

What You’ll Need:

Remove the cover from the glass jar and place the jar upside down on your cardboard. Trace the shape of the jar’s mouth on your cardboard and cut the material to that shape. 

Then, fill your jar with baking soda and leave about a third of the jar empty. Next, add the essential oils. Place the cover back on the jar and shake well.

After that, use a glue gun to bond the edge of the cardboard to the mouth of the jar. Using the thumbtack, poke some holes on the cardboard. Finally, try screwing the cover back on the jar to see if it fits and cut the edges of the cardboard lid to make the necessary adjustments.

Stow your jar air freshener in your cup holder or glove compartment. Open the jar and let the scent diffuse as needed.

Car Diffuser Blend

If your car comes ready with an aromatherapy diffuser, make the most out of it and blend an easy essential oil diffuser recipe!

You can choose any of the essential oils for car sickness, or you can use this diffuser blend for nausea:

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 drops of spearmint essential oil
  • 2 drops of lemon essential oil

Simply add the essential oils to your diffuser and diffuse away. Remember to turn the diffuser off from time to time and crack your window open a bit to let the fresh air in.


Essential oils for motion sickness can no doubt ease your queasiness and make your trip a lot more comfortable. Just remember the don’ts of traveling if you’re prone to motion sickness: 

  • Don’t read or watch movies while traveling.
  • Don’t drink or eat too much.
  • Don’t travel on an empty stomach.
  • Don’t spray your essential oil blend in public.

Of course, you have to remember the dos as well:

  • Bring snacks every time you travel.
  • Breathe fresh air every now and then.
  • Take medicines for motion sickness if your symptoms still haven’t subsided.

Most importantly, always be ready with an essential oil blend in your travel bag. Make your blends first with these essential oils for nausea and other motion sickness symptoms before you go ahead and set off on your journey.

Our Car-Omatherapy Essential Oil Six-Pack can not only help you drive safely—it can also help relieve symptoms of motion sickness. Have far better and more comfortable trips by land, air, or even sea with these natural remedies for motion sickness!

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Author Profile

Diet Immarie Salazar

Diet Immarie Salazar lives and breathes (and writes about) all-natural living. As a free spirit, her favorite Aroma Foundry essential oil is patchouli. But thanks to the saving graces of lavender oil, she can go about her day despite the inevitable stress and frequent headaches.

  1. Overview
  2. All About Motion Sickness
  3. 6 Best Essential Oils for Motion Sickness
    1. Spearmint Essential Oil
    2. Eucalyptus Essential Oil
    3. Grapefruit Essential Oil
    4. Lemon Essential Oil
    5. Mandarin Essential Oil
    6. Rosemary Essential Oil
  4. How to Use Essential Oils for Motion Sickness
    1. Topical Blend
    2. Inhaler Blend
    3. Relaxing Spray Mist
    4. Hanging Air Freshener
    5. Soothing Jar Air Freshener
    6. Car Diffuser Blend
  5. Summary