Written by: Katie Stritmater
One of my favorite things to talk about is how the use of essential oils can help support the body and mind. I have been working with essential oils for 2 ½ years now and I still love teaching about oils and learning new ways to use them! There is something really cool about using nature to help your body find balance to do all the amazing things it was meant to do.
Let’s start with a little background information. Essential oils are the aromatic compounds found in plants; if you have ever smelled the scent of an orange peel, you have experienced the aromatic quality of essential oils! There are 3 main ways to use essential oils; aromatically, topically and internally. Quality and sourcing matters and it is important you are using a brand that is tested and certified as pure, potent, and authentic.
Spring is a time of year where everything begins again - it represents resiliency and strength. Essential oils have the power to renew and refresh not only your home but your body too! Let’s look at the oils that you can use to help spring-clean all aspects of your life.
Spring-Clean Your Allergies
When spring blooms, so do allergies for many people. Not to worry! There are certain oils that can help protect the body against seasonal and environmental elements. Lemon, lavender and peppermint are a power trio when it comes to allergies. These can help by placing 1 drop of each under the tongue, in a glass of water, or in an empty veggie capsule. This trio can be put into a diffuser to be experienced aromatically as it purifies the air. The trio can also be placed on the bottoms of the feet, forehead or chest. Lemon decongests and reduces mucus, Lavender has anti-histamine properties and calms irritation, and peppermint breaks up phlegm and reduces inflammation. Eucalyptus is another good oil choice for allergies as it helps to maintain clear breathing and open airways. This works well diluted with fractionated coconut oil and rubbed on the chest. I also like to put a few drops on the edge of the shower so that I can inhale deeply as the steam rises.
Spring-Clean the House
Essential oils can help you clean your physical space without adding toxicity to your world. Most cleaning can be done simply with baking soda, vinegar, maybe some castile soap, and essential oils.
Take the toilet bowl for example. Remember that erupting volcano science project present at every science fair? Well, use the same properties to clean the toilet. Put ½ cup baking soda, ¼ cup white vinegar and 10 drops of melaleuca (I also add some lemon for freshness) into the toilet bowl. Let it sit for 5 minutes and watch the bubbles erupt. Scrub, then flush. Easy, inexpensive and non-toxic!
To clean the tub with a homemade soft scrub, simply add 1cup baking soda, ¼ cup liquid castile soap, and 10 drops each of lemon, lime, and wild orange to form a paste.
For an all-purpose cleaning spray, add 2 cups white vinegar, 2 cups water, 1 teaspoon natural dish soap (not castile), 30 drops of melaleuca and 20 drops of lemon to a quart-sized glass spray bottle.
Spring-Clean the Body
To clean the body is to help it gently detox. Essential oils affect you on a cellular level. When excess toxins overwhelm the body, it stores those toxins in the fat cells to keep harmful substances away from organs. Essential oils can help release these toxins from fat cells, break them down and help flush them from the body. Citrus oils are particularly good for cleansing the body. Grapefruit and Lemon are great detoxifiers. A good boost to your morning routine is a glass (important that it is glass, not plastic) of warm water combined with 1tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon honey, 2 drops lemon, 2 drops ginger, and 1 drop cinnamon.
Spring-Clean the Mind
As the weather gets warmer, I find myself craving all the beautiful smells of the citrus oils. Perhaps this is because my body is ready to get out of hibernation and start moving more again and needs something clean and fresh.
If you’d like to feel uplifted, go to your citrus oils; bergamot, lemon, and grapefruit for example. My favorite combination in the diffuser is doTERRA’s joyful blend and lemon. It is so clean and instantly lifts my mood. Simply place a drop or two in your hands, gently run together, cup in front of you face, close your eyes and inhale the aroma. Whatever I have left on my hands I like to rub on the back of my neck or my chest. This is a great mood changing practice.
To feel calm and relaxed, find your earthy oils like lavender, frankincense, and vetiver. These are good in times of high stress and to help combat sleepless nights. To get the benefits here you can place a drop of the oil on the bottoms of each foot and gently massage before bed or when you feel overwhelmed.
I hope you use essential oils as a way to find balance in your world and create a sense of calm to start a new season. Whether you are cleaning your surroundings, your body, or your mind, the idea of starting with a blank slate is exciting. Allow yourself to begin anew with a fresh canvas, and fill it only with positivity.
Katie Stritmater is an essential oil lover, teacher and avid user. She teaches workshops at Soul Flyte so look out for her next one to learn even more about the magic of these oils.