Essential oils have become a popular household item in the last few years, but once you've invested in some, how do you actually use them? While that oil diffuser can make your house smell great, many essential oils, such as eucalyptus, have uses way beyond their scent. Here are some of the incredible uses and benefits of eucalyptus oil.
1. Natural Cleanser
Washing with soap and water is one of the best tools you have to prevent bacteria and viruses from spreading among your family. Using a natural soap doesn't mean you have to give up on antibacterial properties, either. According to a study in the Journal of International Society of Preventive & Community Dentistry, eucalyptus oil has a strong antibacterial effect against several types of bacteria.
To make the most of the cleansing benefits of eucalyptus oil, look for a eucalyptus soap or body wash. For example, Tom's of Maine Natural Beauty Bar in Fresh Eucalyptus is gentle on skin while also helping maintain your skin's natural moisture.
2. Household Cleaner
Those same antibacterial properties can also help you keep your home clean by reducing bacteria on household surfaces. Look for natural cleaners that contain eucalyptus oil, or you can easily make your own. Add fifteen to twenty drops of eucalyptus oil to one cup of water and half a cup of vinegar for a handy, all-purpose house cleaner.
3. Immune System Booster
No matter how much you clean your home and wash your hands, germs will inevitably make their way into your life, especially if you have young kids. But you can fight back and build a stronger immune system with the help of eucalyptus. According to research published in BMC Immunology, eucalyptus oil can boost your immune system by increasing phagocytic activity, which is a cellular response that protects your body from bacteria. Use eucalyptus oil in a diffuser to take in those immune-boosting vapors during cold and flu season, or when allergens run high in your area.
4. Sniffle Reducer
If your family has constant sniffles due to house dust mites, you're not alone. Children who sleep with soft toys can become particularly sensitive to dust mites, since soft toys are known to harbor the allergens. Luckily, a study in Pediatric Allergy and Immunology explains that washing and drying these toys with eucalyptus oil can reduce the presence of dust mites and curb those sniffles!
5. Cold Buster
If a bug does manage to hit your household, eucalyptus oil may help soothe and minimize your symptoms. A review in the Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine shows that eucalyptus can be an effective line of defense against the symptoms of sinusitis. It may also help clear your respiratory tract during asthma flare-ups or coughing bouts. When you feel that stuffy nose or scratchy throat coming on, light up your diffuser and add in a few drops of this essential oil to help ease your symptoms naturally.
6. Headache Reliever
Allergy season always brings on sinus headaches for me—which eucalyptus can help with, as well. A study conducted by the Neurological Clinic of the University of Kiel shows that, when used in combination with peppermint oil and applied to the forehead, eucalyptus oil can be an effective muscle relaxer, as well as mentally relaxing.
On days when my head is pounding, I've also found it helpful to use an oil diffuser necklace; just a few drops of oil on the fabric disk inside the locket and I'm set! The necklace works great for moms like me who are always on the go.
7. Skin Soother
The anti-inflammatory properties of eucalyptus oil make it especially helpful for skin prone to acne or eczema, according to a study in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Being both anti-inflammatory and antibacterial, eucalyptus oil offers the perfect solution to help soothe dry or itchy skin while removing dirt and bacteria.
8. Bug Repellent
Choosing a natural bug repellent can be a great alternative to artificial substances when you're trying to keep pesky insects away. Eucalyptus oil has a natural repellent effect for many insects, including houseflies, according to a study in the journal Environmental Science and Pollution Research.
Set up a diffuser with eucalyptus oil in your backyard or wherever bugs are a problem. You can also easily create your own natural bug spray, too. Just fill a spray bottle with equal parts distilled water and witch hazel, then add twenty to thirty drops of eucalyptus oil and ten to fifteen drops of lavender oil. Give the mixture a shake and spray it around doorways, outdoor seating areas, or on your clothes and shoes.
Give these different uses a try and see where you can incorporate the benefits of eucalyptus oil into your daily routine. Not only will you be helping your family and your household stay healthy and clean, but by opting for this naturally derived ingredient over artificial alternatives, you'll be doing your part for the planet, too.
How do you use eucalyptus oil at home? Share your ideas with us on Twitter!
Image Sources: Unsplash | Sher Warkentin | Sher Warkentin
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Why It's Good
Essential oils have many uses beyond simply keeping your house smelling great. You can easily make the most of this powerful natural ingredient by testing out the benefits of eucalyptus oil around your home and in your daily routine.