Lavender is a wonderful plant native to the Mediterranean. Lavender and its oil have been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. Lavender is widely used with herbs such as chamomile in aromatherapy. Lavender oil has anti-septic and anti-inflammatory properties in it. Lavender oil has been used in perfumes, cosmetics, salves, balms and topical applications.When we say lavender, we are immediately reminded of its lovely fragrance. But beyond this property of the fragrant herb, it has various health benefits to offer. Let us explore some of the benefits of lavender and its usage.
Lavender oil – DIY
- Get fresh lavender leave and cut the leaves along with stem.
- Sundry the leaves.
- Once dried, crush them and store in a jar.
- Pour virgin olive oil over the dried flowers.
- Heat the oil and lavender mixture well.
- Strain the oil.
- Add few drops of vitamin E oil to increase shelf life of the oil.
- Store the oil in a dark glass bottle or jar.
Key health benefits of lavender
To handle motion sickness
The mild scent of lavender can be used to fight motion sickness. A few dried lavender petals in a paper bag is always in my bag. Inhaling the aroma provides a relief from nausea – it may also be used for nausea due to an upset stomach although this may not work for everyone. If you really like the perfume, you could also spring in for a car freshener with a lavender fragrance. Some potpourri could also do the trick!
Use lavender oil as a sleep aid
Lavender oil which is one of the essential oils has the power to soothe, calm and relax the mind. I personally have the feeling that in today’s fast moving world, although we plan and plan to do yoga or go for a nice massage, we never have the time for it. A few drops of lavender oil in the bath tub or lavender oil scented candles lit up in the evening could have a calming effect and help you sleep better and it may even be a cure for insomnia.
Use lavender oil on cuts, mild burns and scrapes to kill bacteria
The antiseptic properties of lavender oil makes it very effective in the treatment of minor injuries. It is quite often that your child comes back home with scratches and bruises from a great day of play!
Keep lavender oil handy and apply just a little oil on the affected area after washing the dirt well. You can also use it on minor burns and scrapes as they kill bacteria effectively.
Treats insect bites
Insect and bug bites are itchy and irritating. Lavender oil is well known as a cure for insect bites.
- Take few drops of lavender oil.
- Mix with carrier oil.
- Apply it on the bite.
- Reapply once in two hours to prevent further symptoms.
Lavender oil may not be suitable for children. Consult with the doctor before using for kids.
“According to The University of Arizona, lavender oil must not be used on children below the age of 2 years”.
To treat acne
For anyone with an acne prone skin, treating it might seem like a nightmare. I for one have always been prone to acne and it felt like the worst years of my life. Not here to say that lavender oil just changed my life, but one thing is sure. It did make them a little better.
I had to be consistent in applying it though. I used the age old steam treatment and clubbed it with the benefits of lavender. For those with oily or combination skin, this treatment will definitely work.
- In steaming hot water, add a few drops of lavender oil.
- Place your face over the steam and ensure you get a good steaming session for three to five minutes.
- Wipe off your face with moist cotton.
Do this twice a week and you can see good results.
Word of caution: For some, lavender oil causes skin irritation. So do a test before you dive in!
Lavender oil for glowing skin
Lavender has a tendency to relieve stress and at its oil moisturizes skin well. A few drops of the essential oil, a few drops of coconut oil, a pinch of turmeric and some aloe vera (preferably raw aloe extract from the plant) makes for a great face pack. Not only does the aroma make you feel rejuvenated, it also makes your skin look great.
A ton of lavender products are available these days – but make sure you choose the best for your skin type.
Lavender oil contains anti-inflammatory, anti-septic and anti-fungal properties. Applying lavender oil on the affected area can give you good relief.
Method of application:
- Take a cup of water.
- Pour into a spray bottle.
- Add 10 drops of lavender oil.
- Mix well or shake the solution.
- Spray on the affected area.
- Boil a glass of water in a bowl.
- Add lavender buds to the water.
- Cover the bowl.
- Leave the brew to steep for a few hours.
- Drain the water, allow it to come to room temperature.
- Wash your face.
- Dip a cotton ball in the lavender water and gently wipe your face with it
- Store the balance water in the refrigerator.
- Use as and when required.
Using lavender water as a facial toner gives number benefits to our skin.
- Protects from bacteria that causes infection.
- Heals inflammation and prevents scars.
- Makes your skin firm by improving blood circulation.
Controls hair loss
The major causes of hair loss are stress, depression, insomnia, and anxiety. Lavender oil treats all these problems, and thereby it controls hair loss.
Regular massage with lavender oil on the scalp increases blood circulation which also helps in improving hair growth.
Removes head lice
To get relief from head lice, apply lavender oil and gently massage on your scalp. Doing this procedure 20 minutes before shampooing will relieve you from lice, nits and lice eggs.
As a conditioner
- Boil 2 cups of water.
- Add ¼ cup dried lavender.
- Add few drops of lavender oil.
- Boil for sometime.
- Allow it to cool down.
- Rinse your hair using this water.
This gives a good fragrance to your hair, makes your hair silk and shiny, and also treats dandruff.
Treat dandruff with lavender oil
Lavender oil is the best oil to treat dandruff. The oil lifts the dandruff from the scalp and the lavender helps with any itching or irritation. Mix 2 tablespoons of olive oil, almond oil or coconut oil with around 20 drops of lavender oil. Warm the mixture slightly in the microwave. Cover head with shower cap and leave for 40 minutes. Finally, shampoo and condition as normal.
Lavender oil is effective in treating migraine. Lavender oil massage on your forehead, neck and your temples will give you great relief from headache.
“An Iranian study involved 47 individuals who suffered from migraine headaches. They were divided into two groups – case group and control group. The patients in the case group were made to inhale lavender oil for 15 minutes, while the ones in the control group inhaled liquid paraffin for the same time period. It was found that the individuals in the case group had reported a decreased severity of migraines”.
Aids proper digestion
Indigestion has become a common problem these days due to our food habits. It causes vomiting, stomach pain and burning sensation leading to peptic ulcers.
Lavender tea is a great remedy to get rid of indigestion and intestinal disorders.
How to make lavender tea:
- Boil a cup of water.
- Add 4 teaspoons lavender buds in a sachet to this boiling water.
- Place the boiled water and sachet into a tea cup.
- Leave it for 10 minutes.
- Add sugar if needed and drink.