Interested in using essential oils to improve your sleep but not sure where to start? I was in the same boat when I fell in love with essential oils and wanted to put them to good use in my life.
When I started, I only knew of 1 essential oil that was beneficial for sleep - lavender. You've likely heard this one, too. Though I absolutely adore lavender, I've since found that there are plenty more essential oils that can help improve sleep.
In this post, we're sharing our favorite essential oils for sleep. You'll learn how essential oils can affect your sleep, which essential oils are best for sleep, and how to use essential oils for sleep (even for beginners).
How Do Essential Oils Affect Sleep?
The organic compounds in essential oils have the ability to directly affect our mind through our olfactory system. Similar to, for example, when you smell something that reminds you of your childhood and are immediately comforted.
Often times, getting better sleep is a purely mental game, so using essential oils to calm your mind can actually improve sleep.
There are other essential oils that affect our bodies in a way that improves sleep. For example, peppermint can help open up your airways so you're not trying to fall asleep while you're all stuffed up.
How Can You Use Essential Oils for Better Sleep?
There are 2 main ways that we can use essential oils for better sleep - inhale it or apply it to your skin mixed with a carrier oil like jojoba oil.
Diffusing essential oils is one of the best ways to use them. Start your diffuser about an hour before bedtime and diffuse throughout the night. I love diffusing a bedtime blend while I do my evening ritual and cozy up with a book.
Check out this post for a list of bedtime diffuser blends you can make yourself.
You can also create a DIY bedtime linen spray using this recipe.
To apply essential oils topically, combine essential oils with your favorite carrier oil and apply that to your feet, down your spine, on your wrists, and on the back of your neck before bedtime.
You can also add a few drops of essential oil to your favorite moisturizer or to a warm bath.
If you're up for a project, make yourself a batch of DIY bedtime body butter.
Best Essential Oils for Sleep:
Lavender is a classic when it comes to improving sleep.
It’s well known for its calming and relaxing properties. I always feel a little cliche every time I hype lavender up, but the hype is well deserved.
Use lavender essential oil if you have trouble winding down or calming your mind at night.
For a soothing bedtime bath, add 5-10 drops to an Epsom salt bath for a quiet, self-care evening (or try our Lavender + Geranium Bath Salts).
Cedarwood is a great essential oil for sleep because it can help calm your nerves, thus making it easier to fall asleep.
Cedarwood essential oil is a great choice when you need a break from the smell of lavender.
It's woodsy scent is grounding and blends well with most of the others on this list and helps balance out diffuser blends.
Orange essential oil has a bright, citrusy aroma that is uplifting and mood boosting. Citrus essential oils are a good alternative if you're not a big fan of lavender for sleep.
Add orange essential oil into your bedtime routine if you feel sad, lonely, or just a bit down at the end of the day. It can help improve your mood and make it easier to fall asleep.
I love diffusing orange essential oil while making a gratitude list. This one is great diffused, or just inhaled straight from the bottle.
You can add 5-10 drops to an Epsom salt bath to feel uplifted (or try our Orange + Cedarwood Bath Salts).
Eucalyptus essential oil isn't necessarily known for aiding in sleep. But it does help sooth and open up your respiratory system.
Eucalyptus is great to use when you feel stuffed up, because that can make it hard to fall asleep and stay asleep. It's fresh scent also blends well with other bedtime essential oils
Frankincense makes this list because it is a grounding essential oil, making it ideal for a bedtime ritual. Frankincense can help get you out of your head and reconnected with your body and the present moment before bed.
Though some varieties of frankincense are expensive, you’ll find that the boswellia serrata variety is rather affordable so you can easily work it into your evening self-care every night.
Frankincense essential oil has a warm, woody, comforting aroma that provides a sense of calm and grounding. Many massage practitioners use frankincense for its ability to deepen breathing and aid in relaxation. (1a)
Peppermint essential oil can help relax the nerves and soothe tired muscles. It is also good for uplifting the spirit and helping and its fresh scent can keep you grounded in the present.