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Zoom on 4 soothing Essential Oils

Essential oil

In case of stress, emotional shock, or even depression, the use of Essential Oils can be beneficial. The power of their fragrance can relieve many ailments. Discover the properties of 4 soothing essential oils and their use.

True Lavender EO has anti-anxiety properties

The properties of True Lavender EO (Lavandula angustifolia)

Lavender essential oil– soothing of the nervous system

– eases stress and anxiety

– relaxes the mind (stress, sleep, anxiety…) and the body (soothes the cardiac system and the respiratory system…).

It is a gentle and well-tolerated EO. However, its odour can sometimes be unpleasant, especially when it is overused in cleaning products or poor quality home perfumes.

How to use it?

-in diffusion: 2 to 4 drops in a diffuser

-in inhalation: breathe in the vapours in a large bowl of boiling water to which you have added a few drops of EO. Repeat this several times a day.

What science tells us

A systematic review of several studies published in 2012 has confirmed the therapeutic effects of lavender essential oil on both stress and anxiety.

How Strong is the Evidence for the Anxiolytic Efficacy of Lavender?

Another study conducted in 2007 even showed that olfactory exposure to True Lavender EO had calming effects equivalent to those of diazepam, a drug with anxiolytic properties. Its soothing and relaxing virtues make it also effective in treating insomnia problems.

Ylang-ylang EO for the relief of depressive conditions

The properties of Ylang-ylang EO (Cananga odorata)

ylang ylang-tranquilliser

-strengthens the nervous system

Useful in case of emotional shock or anxiety, this EO lowers blood pressure, slows down the rhythm of breathing and calms possible palpitations at the same time.

It is the EO of “letting go”: it helps to unplug your brain in case of cogitations or excessive mental load. Its action on the cardio-vascular system will make it possible to bring down the rhythms. Basically, its perfume of flowers of the islands involves an immediate relaxation of the muscular tensions.

How to use it?

In the case of anxiety, emotionality or stress, Ylang-ylang essential oil is used in different ways:

  • olfaction: apply the EO diluted in a VO on both wrists then rub the wrists against each other and breathe in;
  • diffusion: 2 to 4 drops in a diffuser;
  • inhalation: breath in the vapours in a large bowl of boiling water to which you have added a few drops of EO.


What science tells us

Evaluation of the harmonizing effect of ylang-ylang oil on humans after inhalation

In 2006 the team of T Hongratanaworakit researched the effects of Ylang-ylang EO on the skin in 40 healthy volunteers. The results showed that, compared to the control group, the EO massage resulted in a decrease in blood pressure and an increase in skin temperature. The volunteers reported feeling more calm and relaxed. Ylang-ylang EO could therefore be effective in relieving conditions of stress or depression. (Hongratanaworakit T; Relaxing effect of ylang-ylang oil on humans after transdermal absorption. Phytotherapy Research: PTR [Phytother Res] 2006 Sep; Vol. 20 (9), pp. 758-63)

In 2016, the Chinese Academy of Sciences evaluated the anxiolytic effect of Ylang-ylang EO on mice and determined its main active constituents. It emerges that exposure to ylang-ylang and its constituent molecules (benzyl benzoate, linalool and benzyl acetate) promotes the regulation of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. It positively affects behaviours such as anxiety, stress, mood, concentration, learning, energy and self-esteem (Zhang, Nan, Zhang, Lei Feng, Linyin Yao, Lei, The anxiolytic effect of essential oil of Cananga odorata exposure on mice and determination of its major active constituents; Phytomedicine 15 December 2016 23(14):1727-1734)


Petitgrain bigarade EO to fight against anxiety


The properties of petitgrain bigarade EO (Citrus aurantium)

– Calming, relaxing (linalyl acetate): the synergy of the molecules of this EO favours vasodilatation by increasing the diameter of blood vessels, which contributes to nervous appeasement.

– Nerve balancer: linalool has anxiolytic properties: it inhibits the release of certain neurotransmitters involved in nervous balance.

– Promotes sleep through its calming properties, it is a powerful emotional harmonizer.


How to use it?

  • bath (5 to 10 drops diluted in a neutral base)
  • relaxing massage
  • diffusion 

What science tells us

Aromatherapy Improves Work Performance Through Balancing the Autonomic Nervous System

Very close in its composition to the EO of true lavender. It will be a good alternative for people who do not appreciate its smell. Calming and soothing, this EO, just like lavender, will lift muscle spasms and release nervous tension.

From within the same family, you can replace it by:

-Sweet orange (citrus sinensis), contains among other components, such as linalol which has a sedative, calming and anxiolytic effect.

-Green mandarin (citrus reticulata), has a relaxing action thanks to the N-methyl anthranilate of methyl. Therefore, this relaxing essence is sedative and has anti-stress effects.

Beware, they can cause skin reactions if being in the sun.

They combine perfectly with EOs such as Ylang-ylang or Petit Grain bigarade.

Noble chamomile EO against distress and anxiety

The properties of noble chamomile EO (Chamaemelum nobile)

roman chamomile-calms down excitement,

-relieves nervous tension and stress.

How to use it?

To soothe nervousness,

  • massage: 10 ml of VO of your choice (calendula, sweet almond, sunflower…) + 3 to 5 drops maximum of roman chamomile EO. Then, massage at the level of the solar plexus, but also at the level of the neck if you are experiencing tension. You can do it up to 4 times a day if the symptoms are serious then decrease to twice a day (once in the morning and once in the evening), as soon as there is an improvement.
  • In the bath, at the rate of just a few drops diluted in bath oil.
  • Diffusion,
  • Olfaction, at the level of the wrists or on a neutral stick. Breathe in several times a day while combining it with breathing techniques (breathe in on a count of 3, breathe out on a count of 6). Therefore, this will trigger the parasympathetic nervous system, the one that causes us to relax.

To help you fall asleep or get back to sleep

  • in diffusion or simply on a handkerchief (2 drops) placed on your bedside table.
  • in massage: 10 ml of VO + 3 to 5 drops maximum of roman chamomile EO. Then, massage the solar plexus, the neck, the temples… Apply it at night, every hour, from 19h/20h onwards to bring you to a state of relaxation.

What science tells us

Long-term chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla L.) treatment for generalized anxiety disorder

Recipe of some preparations for a relaxing massage

Do a massage of the solar plexus with a few drops of the mixture. You can also carry out a relaxing massage in the evening before bedtime.

Choose an odourless Oil (Hazelnut, Sesame or Apricot Kernel for example) that penetrates to the hypodermis, and also the muscles

Preparation n°1 :

  • Lavender: 30 drops
  • Orange: 15 drops
  • VO: 50 ml

Preparation n°2: for those who do not like lavender but need to let go:

  • Ylang ylang: 5 drops
  • Green Mandarin: 15 drops
  • Petit Grain Bigarade: 10 drops
  • VO: 50 ml

Preparation n°3

  • Roman chamomile, 10 drops
  • Orange, 10 drops
  • Lavender 30 drops
  • VO: 30 ml


Precautions for use: EOs are not recommended for pregnant, breastfeeding women and children under the age of 8. Refer to a doctor or a pharmacist trained in aromatherapy.

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