Cedarwood is a favorite among essential oil users for promoting deep, restful sleep. This essential oil includes sesquiterpenes, which can deprogram wrong information in the cells and bring oxygen to the cells, helping to circumvent any recurring sleep issues and get you fast asleep! You can place one drop under the big toes before bed, or mix with lavender and diffuse while sleeping or getting ready for bed. Cedarwood can also promote healthy hair growth, and can been used in homemade conditioners (often paired with Lavender and Rosemary oils) to help reverse thinning of hair.
Cedarwood can be used for balancing the muladhara (root) chakra, which is associated with survival issues, self preservation instinct, and the fight or flight response. This oil is also associated with the svadhishthana (sacral) and manipura (solar plexus) chakras, which are the next two chakras moving up through the body, and can be used to balance these chakras and enhance a grounding yoga practice. We diffuse and apply this oil to vita flex points in my aromatherapy flow classes to aid with rooting and centering as we flow through practices sequenced specifically for grounding through these first three chakras.
Here are my top 5 uses for Cedarwood Oil:
Clarity is my absolute FAVORITE oil for concentration! A blend of stimulating oils, including peppermint and rosemary (which have been used for many years to promote mental sharpness), it is known for promoting a clear mind and alertness. A study performed by Dr. William N. Dember of the University of Cincinnati found that inhaling peppermint oil increased the mental accuracy of students by 28 percent (!); that paired with the help of rosemary for memory retention makes Clarity the perfect blend for long days at the office, library, or lecture hall. This blend can also be used to help restore mental alertness or wakefulness when you are experiencing fatigue or drowsiness.
The scent is somewhat of an acquired taste to some (you can mix it with some extra peppermint to help if you are one of those people!), but I actually LOVE the smell as is. I have a full time job and teach yoga on the side, so I often get home in the evening drained from a full day of work at my “day job.” Clarity helps get me into the mindset I need to teach and tackle anything else I have going at the end of a busy day. I keep it in a roller bottle diluted with fractionated coconut oil. Just a little bit on my temples and the back of my neck helps to keep me focused and alert throughout my evening classes.
Clarity can be used:
Aromatically: Diffuse or inhale directly from the bottle to promote mental clarity and focus
Topically: Apply to the temples, wrists, back of the neck, or vitaflex points to promote focus and mental alertness
Here are my top 5 uses for Clarity:
Usually I showcase a single oil or blend, but this week I am highlighting one my favorite combinations to diffuse for a nice balance of calm energy: Stress Away + Peppermint!
I love diffusing this when I get home in the evenings and want to relax, but still need to get stuff done. It’s the perfect combination of energizing and relaxing! Plus it smells AMAZING.
Using Stress Away + Peppermint to Enhance a Yoga Practice
I like to diffuse this combo in my aromatherapy yoga classes to relax, center, and promote focus during a manipura chackra-focused practice. Peppermint is associated with the manipura chakra, or solar plexus, which is the center of self-confidence, so it can really be beneficial when practicing poses for that chakra. And since Peppermint is super energizing and we generate heat with flow centered around the solar plexus, we balance that energy with the calming properties of Stress Away.
While Stress Away and Peppermint together can help to increase energy levels and promote calmness and focus during the practice, they also offer unique advantages on their own. Stress Away applied to the wrists or back of the neck or added to your water can reduce stress and help to center the mind while fostering balanced emotions and positive self-esteem both on and off the mat. Then a cooling Peppermint body spray helps cool off and balance the manipura chakra after some steamy vinyasas!
Everyday Uses for Stress Away + Peppermint
Stress Away and Peppermint are two of the most popular oils because they are so, so versatile. In addition to being great oils to use in yoga classes, they are both staples in my oil arsenal that I use to help alleviate headaches, ease anxiety, and even wear as a natural perfume! Plus, they are both included in the “Everyday Oils” in Young Living’s Premium Starter Kit. The “Everyday Oils” definitely live up to their name – you will find yourself using these oils every single day for a variety of reasons, whether on their own or as a combo!
Both Stress Away and Peppermint essential oils can be used aromatically (either inhaled or diffused), applied topically (remember to dilute), and ingested.*
Here are some more tips for using these oils together:
Valor. I'm not ashamed to admit that this is an oil that I hoard. There's an order limit of one per month, and you better believe I order it Every. Single. Month. Known as "chiropractor in a bottle" and "courage in a bottle," I find a few drops on my wrists calm me right down and help me tackle the task at hand when I am feeling overwhelmed. It's a a very grounding essential oil blend of spruce, rosewood and frankincense along with coconut oil.
Valor can be used directly (neat) on the skin, or if you have extremely sensitive skin, it can be diluted with a carrier oil. Valor can also be diffused.
Top 10 Ways to Use Valor:
1. Alleviate a Stiff Neck
Rub two drops of Valor directly onto your neck to help alleviate stiffness.
2. Realign Your Spine
It's called “Chiropractor in a Bottle” for a reason! Rub a few drops of Valor on the bottoms of both feet, then do the same with several drops up and down the spinal column. If applied before a chiropractor adjustment, you will hold the adjustment longer!
Anyone who knows me knows that the holiday season is my absolute favorite time of year. I love everything about it, from the lights and music to the traditional meals (warm alcoholic beverages included!) and holiday parties. Of course, the scents of the season become a huge part of the memories we create while spending time with loved ones during this time of year. If you want to smell Christmas in a bottle anytime of year, get yourself some Christmas Spirit! It is the perfect combination of spruce, cinnamon, and orange, and whenever I diffuse it, my home instantly smells of Christmas morning! Everyone who walks in comments on how good it smells. And of course, it's my favorite blend to diffuse while decorating my home and preparing gifts for the holidays.
Additionally, this blend offers several therapeutic benefits, including:
Spruce: This oil helps you to feel grounded and balanced. It has anti-inflammatory properties and can help stimulate the immune system.
Cinnamon: Also anti-inflammatory, this oil is powerfully antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal. (Cinnamon is one of the single oils that makes up the super-popular Thieves blend.)
Orange: This oil is relaxing, uplifting, and is often used to help with anxiety and insomnia.
So, as you can see, while diffusing essential oils can make your home smell wonderful and reminiscent of this joyous season, it also offers real therapeutic benefits. You can’t say that about your average Christmas candle!
If you want to experience this blend in person, be sure to pop into one of my aromatherapy yoga classes around the holidays! See you on the mat!
This week I’m featuring my absolute favorite blend to use around the house: Purification! When you invest in the Premium Starter Kit, you’ll get to try it out as it’s one of the “Everyday Oils” included in the kit, and it seriously is such a versatile and powerful oil that you'll use it EVERY SINGLE DAY. In fact, when I purchased my first kit, it was the oil that I ran out of first. It's that good.
Purification is an essential oil blend comprised of citronella, lemongrass, rosemary, tea tree, lavandin and myrtle. When I diffuse it, I always pick up on the lemongrass first - it smells SO fresh and clean. I diffuse it regularly around the apartment, but especially when I notice the pet smells taking over. I love my little piglet pup, but I do not love her smells!
In addition to diffusing, purification can be used topically. Dilution is generally not necessary for adults. (Dilution is typically recommended for children for all essential oils and blends.)
Top 10 uses for Purification:
Peace & Calming is one of Young Living’s most popular essential oil blends, made up of tangerine, orange, ylang ylang, patchouli, and blue tansy.
My favorite way to use Peace & Calming is to diffuse it while I’m sleeping. I combine 2-3 drops P&C with 4-5 drops of lavender, and it is heavenly. The first time I diffused it, I was amazed at how quickly I fell asleep and how well-rested I felt the next morning. I woke up in the same position in which I fell asleep, telling me that I didn’t toss and turn in my chronic sort of way. As an added bonus, I've noticed that Lola (my fur baby) also sleeps through the night better when this is diffusing - I know because when she wakes up and shakes around, I usually wake up too!
For these reasons alone, I always keep Peace & Calming in stock in my home. But of course, as with all of these wonderful oils, the blend can be used in many ways.
How to use Peace & Calming:
Top 10 uses for Peace & Calming:
Usually I showcase a single oil or blend, but this week I am highlighting one my favorite combinations to diffuse: Lemon + Peppermint!
I love diffusing this in the mornings, or when I'm cleaning and organizing the apartment. It’s the perfect combination of motivation and clean house smell!
Using Lemon + Peppermint to Enhance a Yoga Practice
I will diffuse this combo in my yoga classes as well as offering topical application to energize my students and enhance a flow focused on detoxing and balancing the manipura chakra. Both lemon and peppermint are associated with the manipura chakra, or solar plexus, which is the center of self-confidence. While lemon and peppermint can both help to increase energy levels and promote focus during the practice, they also offer unique advantages on their own.
A drop of lemon applied to vita flex points or added to your water (remember to use glass when adding citrus oils to water!) helps to stimulate and cleanse the digestive system. Paired with cleansing twists and solar plexus balancing poses, lemon can help foster a balanced digestive system, balanced emotions, and positive self-esteem.
Then a cooling peppermint body spray helps cool off and balance the manipura chakra after some steamy vinyasas!
Everyday Uses for Lemon + Peppermint
Lemon and Peppermint are two of the most popular oils because they are so, so versatile. In addition to being great oils to use in yoga classes, they are both staples in my oil arsenal that I use to help alleviate headaches, stomachaches, allergies, and as a detox aid when I am cleansing. Plus, they are both included in the “Everyday Oils” in Young Living’s Premium Starter Kit. The “Everyday Oils” definitely live up to their moniker – you will find yourself using these oils every single day for a variety of reasons, whether on their own or as a combo!
Both lemon and peppermint essential oils can be used aromatically (either inhaled or diffused), applied topically (remember to dilute), and ingested.*
Here are some more tips for using these oils together:
I'll admit that when I first got Geranium oil, I wasn't the biggest fan. In the bottle, it smelled super strong and overly floral, but when you use just a few drops in the diffuser, or mix it with citrus oils like Citrus Fresh or Jade Lemon, the scent is absolutely heavenly!
Geranium is one of the essential oils associated with the fifth chakra, or vissudha (throat) chakra, which is the center of communication. When the throat chakra is blocked, people may have a difficult time expressing themselves and speaking up for themselves (or others!).
I like to diffuse this in my aromatherapy flow classes as we practice poses to balance the vissudha chakra such as uttana shishosana (extended puppy pose), sarvangasana (shoulder stand), halasana (plow), and matsyasana (fish pose) to release throat chakra blockages and foster open and honest communication.
See below for other ways to use this lovely essential oil!
Top 5 uses for Geranium Oil:
Add a few drops to your nighttime moisturizer to help with dry skin and acne.
Dilute with a carrier and apply to help alleviate cradle cap.
Diffuse to purify the air, aid in stress relief, and foster a peaceful environment.
Mix with a coconut oil and apply as an after shave moisturizer.
Apply neat or with a carrier oil to help minimize the appearance of scars.
Melaleuca Alternifolia, better known as Tea Tree Oil, is an amazing oil to have around the house. It is gentle enough that it can be applied directly to the skin, but powerful enough to help with some not-so-nice stuff:
Soothe discomfort from rashes and bug bites.
Mix with apple cider vinegar to help combat mold in and around the house. (Keep some in a spray bottle for bath tile/grout.)
Add a couple drops to 1/4 cup of white vinegar to freshen laundry.
Apply 1 drop directly to acne blemishes (this works wonders for me!).
Diffuse to cleanse the air and help relieve asthma and congestion.
Place 1 drop on a tick to unlatch (can be used on humans and pets).
Apply to feet to help alleviate toenail fungus and Athlete’s foot.
Apply 1 drop to cuts and scrapes to facilitate healing.
Massage around the outside of the ear to help relieve earaches.
Apply 2x daily to fingernails and toenails to help them repair and regain a healthy look after being damaged by harsh polishes or fake nails.
In addition to all of these everyday uses, Melaleuca can be used in your yoga practice to balance the fifth chakra, known as the throat or Vissudha chakra. This chakra is the center of communication, and when it is blocked it can be difficult to maintain clear and honest lines of communication or to speak up for yourself (or others!).
Diffuse tea trea to cleanse and purify the air as you practice poses with Jalandhara Bandha (the throat lock) and throat-opening poses such as puppy and fish pose to release blockages and allow truth to flow through the Vissudha chakra.