Uses of Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender Essential OIl has been described as a First Aid Kit in a bottle as it has so many healing properties.  For a detailed description on how best to use lavender essential oil please refer to the fact sheet below which was written by Phillip Simms of NZ Lavender from material he sourced at the Otago University medical library.  Phillip has kindly given me permission to use his sheet.

Lavandula angustifolia is the most therapeutically active and the safest lavender essential oil. (Lavandula 'Grosso' comes in at a very close second and you can also use it in the ways listed below.)  Lavender Essential Oil  is one of the most commonly used essential oils in aromatherapy; producing a pharmacological and psychological effect on our bodies through its calming, soothing, healing and balancing properties. It is absorbed into the body through the skin, the lungs and the nasal chamber. Safe to use, cost effective, easily available, holistic, lavender essential oil is the ideal complementary therapy for self medication and home use.


Application of Lavender Essential Oil

There are several different ways in which lavender essential oil can be applied:

Application to the skin:

Baths – add up to 5 drops of oil to your fully run bath water.

Neat – 1 or 2 drops can be applied neat to the skin.

Massage – gently massage the body with a blend of 10 - 15 drops of lavender oil and 30ml of sweet almond oil.


        Steam – add a few drops of oil to a bowl of hot water, inhale under a towel.

        Neat – add 1 or 2 drops to a handkerchief and place inside your pillow case.

        Indirect – place a few drops in a room vaporiser or diffuser.


Uses of Lavender Essential OIl

Skin conditions

Used to assist treatment of: acne, insect bites, minor burns, bruises, sunburn, scarring, stretch marks.

Application:  apply neat for minor burns, insect bites and cuts. Apply in massage oil blend to bruises.

Nervous system

Properties: soothing, calming, balancing, relaxing, sedative, analgesic, antidepressant, tonic.

Used to assist treatment of: headaches, insomnia, nervous tension, anxiety, mood swings, stress related disorders, PMS.

Cancerused palliatively to improve wellbeing and reduce anxiety.

Application: apply 1 or 2 drops neat to the temples or back of the neck for headaches, migraine and insomnia. Use in baths and gentle massage, applied directly to pillow or indirectly in vaporisers and diffusers.

Respiratory system

Properties: expectorant, decongestant, antiseptic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, sedative.

Used to assist treatment of: bronchial congestion, coughs & colds, influenza, sore throats, croup, laryngitis.

Applicationchest rub using massage oil, steam inhalation, applied directly to pillow or indirectly in room diffusers.

Babies & Infants

Properties: analgesic, antiseptic, sedative, soothing, calming, relaxing

Used to assist treatment of: fretfulness (e.g. with teething problems), insomnia, eczema, nappy rash

Application: Massage:  newborn baby 1 drop, 2 to 12 months 3 drops in 30 ml sweet almond oil. Massage baby’s body avoiding eyes, mouth and genitals. Inhalation: 1 or 2 drops in a room vaporiser/diffuser. Bath: add 1 drop to bath water.


It is recommended that essential oils are only used during pregnancy under the guidance of a qualified aromatherapist.

Adverse Effects

generally regarded as non-irritant and non-sensitising. However over-use of the oil in sensitive individuals could lead to contact dermatitis/contact allergy, especially with the use of neat oil.

Interactions:  could potentiate effects of sleeping tablets, sedatives and antidepressants taken concurrently.


References: University of Otago, Canterbury Medical Library, Complementary & Alternative medicine section.