It’s no secret that we love searching for ways to improve the quality of our sleep. We are always on the lookout for organic mattresses, natural sheets, and the coziest of pajamas. But eco-friendly and toxic-free bedding can be pretty costly. And while we hope to turn our bedrooms into dreamy oases someday, we want to find affordable and conscious ways to better our sleep… preferably as soon as possible!
This is why we love essential oils. Not only are oils relatively affordable and natural, but they are also easy-to-use. And with so many incredible benefits—including stress-relief and deeper sleep—it’s no wonder our ancestors have been relying on them for years.
For a natural way to get your best night’s sleep, here are seven essential oils to incorporate into your evening routine.
Be sure to check use instructions for each oil before ingesting or using topically—depending on the source and the blend, not every oil is suitable for every type of application. If you’re avoiding topical use, here are our favorite diffusers to consider.
Origin | Lavender shrub
Scent | A floral aroma with hints of pine
Lavender, one of the more popular essential oils, is most commonly used for relaxation and sleep. When used before bed, studies have shown that lavender oil can not only help you fall asleep but also improve the overall quality of rest. Begin diffusing lavender oil an hour or so before turning in for the night. You can also rub one or two drops on your pillow, or apply directly to your feet, temples, and wrists. A little goes a long way with this powerful scent.
Our Favorite Method | Create a bed spray with 2 cups distilled water, 1 tbsp witch hazel, and 10-20 drops of lavender. Mist a bit lightly over your sheets before going to bed.
Origin | Ylang-Ylang tree flowers
Scent | Floral with hints of roses & jasmine
Ylang ylang essential oil comes from the Cananga tree native to Asian and South Pacific rainforests—the oil is especially fragrant and known for its sedative effects. Diffuse a few drops of this oil in the evenings to create a relaxing environment in your home or add to a warm bath to alleviate stress and tension.
Our Favorite Method | Combine a few drops of ylang ylang essential oil with fractionated coconut oil and massage into your shoulders each night.
Origin | An herb native to the Mediterranean & North Africa; similar to oregano
Scent | Spicy with notes of pepper
Marjoram essential oil has many uses including its ability to aid sleep. It can be applied topically to the nape of your neck to relieve stress, and it is a popular oil to calm children before naps. Diffuse in your room before sleep, or mix 3-5 drops into our recommended lavender linen spray for a calming mist.
Our Favorite Method | Using a roller bottle, combine fractionated coconut oil with 10-20 drops of marjoram essential oil. Roll on the bottoms of your feet and the back of your neck for a deeper night’s sleep.
Origin | Resin of Boswellia Sacra trees
Scent | Sweet & woody with notes of citrus & spice
Historically thought to be the most valuable oil of all, Frankincense was used in Egypt as incense. Frankincense is a wonderful sleep aid because of its aromatherapeutic benefits, relieving stress and promoting relaxation. Place a few drops of oil into your hands, rub your palms together, and inhale before laying down to sleep.
Our Favorite Method | Once or twice a week, we love adding a few drops of Frankincense to steaming water for a mini nighttime facial. This is wonderful for your lungs and skin!
Origin | Cedarwood tree bark
Scent | Earthy & slightly smoky with hints of balsamic
If you struggle with insomnia, you may want to try incorporating cedarwood into your nightly routine. An essential oil with natural sedative properties, it’s believed that cedarwood is emotionally grounding and promotes the feelings of safety. Diffuse or apply this oil directly to your pillow to aid with sleep. Cedarwood can also fight off colds and repel household bugs.
Our Favorite Method | Cedarwood mixes well with lavender oil for a potent and relaxing blend. Mix 3-5 drops of each oil in your diffuser before bed.
Origin | Bitter orange tree blossoms
Scent | Clean floral aroma with undertones of pepper & orange
Neroli essential oil is a wonderful sleep remedy as its hypnotic and soothing properties can help relax your mind, as well as relieve insomnia, grief, and feelings of despair. It has also been shown to reduce blood pressure, ease agitation, and benefit your overall wellbeing. We recommend using neroli sparingly, as it is one of the most expensive oils in the world.
Our Favorite Method | Neroli essential oil is a known remedy for menstrual cramps. Massage a few drops onto your abdomen before bed to alleviate pain.
Origin | Chamomile plant
Scent | Soft, herbal, hints of apples
You may be familiar with drinking chamomile tea before bed, but did you know chamomile essential oil can also be a helpful sleep aid? Most commonly applied topically to the bottoms of feet, this oil has stress-relieving properties and also works well in a diffuser after a long day. Soothing anger, irritability, and agitation are also known to be benefits.
Our Favorite Method | Add a few drops of chamomile essential oil to your favorite lotion and apply in the evening to help you unwind before bed.
Blog post by The Good Trade