7 expert-approved essential oil recipes aromatherapists use in their homes

Discover essential oil recipes that experts approve of to assist with hair growth, concentration, sleep hygiene and much more

A selection of glass bottles with dropper tops on colorful light pink, teal, sky blue and yellow geometric background
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They say there's power in numbers, so when looking for essential oil recipes online, don't just settle for a single aromatherapy scent with a neutral carrier oil. Inhale the benefits of a scented oil bouquet with these invigorating essential oil recipes for diffusers. 

As well as just smelling nice, essential oil recipes can be used holistically. Some of the best essential oil diffusers might come with a starter pack of oils to get you started, but you shouldn't feel obliged to keep topping up with the same fragrance...Especially if you can make your own for much cheaper.

Essential oil recipes can also be used with wax to create scented candles. So wick for wick, you're getting more bang for your buck.

We spoke to one aromatherapy expert who shared seven essential oil recipes she swears by. From healthy tresses to reliving stresses, there's a blend of organically-derived botanical oils to suit everyone. 

Essential oil recipe to get a good night's sleep

'To get a really good night's sleep, just add a few drops pure lavender essential oil onto your pillow before you go to bed,' says Aromatherapy expert and founder, Emilie de Block, Bio Scents.

'The relaxing experience of lavender fragrance led to its deliberate, therapeutic use in aromatherapy to relieve mild anxiety when experts started using the scent. Lavender has been also used internally for mood imbalances such as anxiety, insomnia, and gastrointestinal distress, including “nervous stomach". 

'It's also a great oil to blend with other scents, we love blending it with Cedarwood for a great night's sleep and to ground us after a long day at work.'

An electric and reed diffuser on round wooden table

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Essential oil air freshener

As we become more conscious of the environmental impact of our purchases, some of us are steering away from synthetic fragrances and conventional aerosol air fresheners.

By purchasing pure essential oils, you can control what is in the air in your home – something you might be particularly wary of if you have a young or immunocompromised family.

There are a number of ways to distribute an air-freshening essential oil concoction around the home, which may come in handy if you've got an open-plan kitchen where smells can travel to other rooms. You can simply spritz the air with a plant sprayer (available on Amazon), which delivers a fine continuous spray, or if you're watching your dollars, the best reed diffusers are typically cheaper than their electronic counterparts.

Fancy being a little more thrifty? By learning how to make a reed diffuser, you can pour your cocktail of oils straight into the container with a bespoke ratio of oils to suit the strength you like. The advantage of mixing your own recipe is that you know exactly how much of it is essential oil concentrate, and how much (if any) is odorless carrier oil.

Essential oil blends for housekeeping

A laundry room with green palm print wallpaper wall decor and washing machine with green rubber basket

(Image credit: Future)

Using essential oil recipes in the washing machine

Even the best laundry detergents can leave your skin feeling irritated, so if that's he case, it might be time to make your clothes smell great by other means. While you could learn how to clean without commercial products, you could also use an eco-friendly laundry detergent for a more natural approach to cleaning the contents of your washing basket.

'Add a few drops of essential oil to the second detergent drawer of your washing machine (where you add softener) for an amazing scent,' says de Block.

'Specifically orange and lemon essential oil is great for its antibacterial properties and will eliminate smells like no other.'

You will need:

  • Orange oil
  • Lemon oil

Kitchen French doors opening onto decking area with wicker garden furniture and terraced garden beyond

(Image credit: Future)

Using essential oils to clean wooden tables

You will need:

We all love the end-result of cleaning and polishing wood tables. But when you have a family with toddlers and teens in the family, it can be a hard task of cleaning up crumbs and sticky spills without reaching for the best cleaning supplies you have in your under-sink space.

The trouble with some of these market leaders, is the toxic ingredients they're composed of. Equally, the best eco-friendly cleaning products can have a premium price point that's not accessible to everyone. So DIY your own wood cleaner by mixing oils that can kill germs on your wooden dining and coffee tables.

de Block says: 'Any essential oil with antibacterial properties is perfect to clean your wooden tables. Add some oil to a carrier oil and rub it into your wooden table to make it shine and bacteria-free.'

As always, spot test an inconspicuous area to check that this solution is suitable for your furniture first. If no damage is done, go ahead and use tea tree / melaleuca oil, known for warding off salmonella and E.Coli, and therefore perfect for spots where family members grab a snack or sit down for a meal.

A modern traditional home office with houseplants and white office chair

(Image credit: Katie Lee)

Essential oil recipes for improving concentration

Whether you're working from home temporarily, or live the WFH life five days a week, there are various ways to feature essential oil recipes in your professional working schedule.

We know that drinking enough water, adopting proper posture and taking regular screen breaks are essential to working well, but have you ever thought of using essential oils as a home office idea or in the kids' study area to help them hone in one their homework?

'Rosemary, sweet orange and peppermint (one third each) in a diffuser will help you concentrate and stay alert. The perfect mix at the end of the office day or to study with.' says de Block.

If you've got young children who are completing a class project with this herbaceous scent lingering in the air, you might be wondering: 'are essential oils safe?' The answer is yes, but be sure they don't drink or orally ingest the fluid. If in doubt, store your diffuser up high where they won't be able to reach it. Think of these containers as having all of the benefits of the best candles, just without the heat or fire hazard. 

To fully capitalize on this well-being zone, reap the benefits of houseplants by investing in the best indoor plants to oxygenate the area. If your home happens to be situated in the city, you might suffer from extra noise, light, or air pollution so it's important that you bring nature into the home.

Essential oil recipe for winding down

Our time-poor schedules often mean that we've little-to-no-time to take five to rest and rewind. Whether it's a tight work deadline, the kids are getting on your nerves, or you've had a little squabble with your significant other, there's a multitude of reasons as to why you might need to set aside some time for self-care. And we promise you, that sweet treat or long bath will feel even more indulgent with this expert-approved essential oil recipe permeating around your pad. 

'Orange, lavender and peppermint is an amazing relaxation blend. Just add the oils into an oil burner or to an oil diffuser for the ultimate relaxation fragrance in your home,' says de Block.

Peppermint oil in particular is a great essential oils for headaches as it is proven to increase blood flow in the body and open up the sinuses for better oxygen flow.

Essential oil recipe for optimal hair growth

You will need:

Whether you've seen your fave Hollywood star sporting a new hair do, or are praying to the hair gods for some extra inches, essential oils can help to accelerate the growth process... On healthy hair. So, once you've treated yourself to a good haircut to get rid of any broken, damaged or split ends, use this concoction in your self-care regime to revive your roots.

'Lavender and rosemary (50/50 of each) are a great mix to add to a carrier oil or shampoo and rub into your scalp to improve hair growth and reduce stress at the same time,' says de Block.

'Rosemary is one of our favorite oils for hair loss, and is especially loved by our male clients who suffer from hair loss within their beard. Known to support hair growth and increase thickness, adding a few drops of Rosemary to a carrier oil and massaging it directly into the scalp or skin will help promote hair growth in the areas required. Repeat twice weekly for best results.'

However, if you're noticing hair loss or a change in your hair growth pattern, it's always best to consult a medical professional.

How to store essential oil recipes

'When blending essential oils, it’s important to be patient and allow your blend time to rest for a few days. This allows the essential oils to combine and the fragrance to develop,' says Sam Andrew, head of e-commerce and operations at Freshskin Beauty LTD.

'To store your blends you’ll need a few amber bottles. Amber glass helps to keep essential oils from deteriorating and protects their aromatic and therapeutic properties.'

These amber glass bottles from Amazon have droppers which are great for precise application. Alternatively, you could make your own essential oils for headaches and apply this with a dispenser that has a roller ball like those from Vivaplex, who also have a store on Amazon.

Christina Chrysostomou
Former acting head ecommerce editor

Hi, I'm the former acting head ecommerce editor at Real Homes. Prior to working for the Future plc family, I've worked on a number of consumer events including the Ideal Home Show, Grand Designs Live, and Good Homes Magazine. With a first class degree from Keele University, and a plethora of experience in digital marketing, editorial, and social media, I have an eye for what should be in your shopping basket and have gone through the internal customer advisor accreditation process.