What exactly are essential oils? These powerful plant extracts have been used for thousands of years for their health, cosmetic and emotionally uplifting properties.
Essential oils benefits include:
- An excellent addition to skin care routine
- An alternative to harsh household cleaners
- Support for immune system
- Support for digestion
- Energy booster
- Aid to reduce anxiety
- Aid to improve mood
From cooking and cleaning to pet care and home remedies, essential oils can help you create a non-toxic environment for your family. Essential oils are an effective, natural way to help you meet your goals and find life balance. Whatever you are looking to support physically, mentally, emotionally or in your home – you’ll find there is an oil for that!
When choosing which brand of oils to use therapeutically for your health, I encourage you to ask these three questions first:
- How does the company test its oils? (And make sure they do!) Is the company transparent about its testing results? Do their oils test out to be 100% pure? Purity is crucial when you are using oils therapeutically.
- Are the oils are sourced indigenously? This ensures the oil is at its maximum potency for therapeutic benefit.
- Is the company creating a sustainable economy in the locations where oils are sourced (impacting the world for the greater good)?
Sherry’s and my recent Facebook Live chat focused on using essential oils to help remove toxic chemicals from your home. So, let’s first discuss the importance of removing toxic chemicals from your life!
In the United States, toxic chemicals bombard us all day long. From the chemicals in our skin care, hair care, cleaning products, and the foods we eat, toxins surround us constantly. Carefully and conscientiously selecting cleaning and skin care products is a simple way to lessen toxic load.
The body works hard to maintain balance, or homeostasis. Even a healthy immune system has a hard time when overloaded by toxins it can’t handle. Chemical ingredients and artificial fragrances in our cleaning products vary in the type of health hazard they cause. Some cause immediate reactions (e.g., skin irritation, headache, watery eyes, coughing, sneezing, upset stomach) while others are associated with chronic, or long-term disease.
“Other ingredients in cleaners may have low acute toxicity but contribute to long-term health effects, such as cancer or hormone disruption. Chemicals that are so-called “hormone disruptors” can interfere with the body’s natural chemical messages, either by blocking or mimicking the actions of hormones. Hormone disruptors zap the immune system. A weakened immune system leads to inflammation in the body.” (1) This just emphasizes the importance of removing toxins from as many products as possible.
I started eliminating toxins from my home not only for myself but for the health of my small children. “Children are often the most vulnerable to chemicals because their organs and immune systems are still developing. Certain chemicals may interfere with the development of their neurological, endocrine and immune systems, a problem that can be detrimental to even their adult lives.” (2)
Baking soda, white vinegar and castile soap are three basics for nontoxic household cleaning.
- Benefit: Absorbs and eliminates odor.
- Use as: Non-abrasive cleanser to clean countertops, sinks, and tubs.
- How to: Sprinkle some baking soda on carpet and vacuum after 15 minutes for a fresher look and feel. For scent, add a drop or two of lavender to the baking soda.
- Benefit: Contains natural antifungal and antibacterial properties that cut grease and dissolve mineral deposits.
- Use as: Cleanser for coffee maker, floors, refrigerator and so much more! (NOTE: Do not use on marble. Test a small area of your countertops before using)
- How to: Add some white vinegar to your spray cleaners for an extra punch. Use half vinegar to half water to clean out your coffee maker.
- Benefit: Lifts dirt, cuts grease, and eliminates tough stains.
- How to: Pour a small amount over baking sheets and pans then scrub for a few minutes for clean, shiny results. You can use this to make your own detergent, foaming hand soap and more.
BEST ESSENTIAL OILS FOR CLEANING:
- Wild Orange
- Cleansing Blend
- Protective Blend
And now, drum roll please… here are my nine favorite recipes using the oils above (but many other oils can be used for cleaning, as well)!
ALL-PURPOSE HOUSE CLEANER:
In a 16 oz. glass spray bottle, combine 1/4 cup white vinegar, 1 3/4 cups water, 30 drops essential oil (combos could be 15 drops each, lavender and lemon; 10 drops each, eucalyptus, peppermint and wild orange; 15 drops grapefruit and 15 drops lavender; or 30 drops Protective Blend). You can also just use water and 30 drops Protective Blend; this is my go-to. Be sure to add oils first and then the liquids to keep the bottle from overflowing. Use a little less than 16 oz of liquid to keep from overflowing.
YOGA MAT or WORKOUT CLEANER:
In an 8 oz glass spray bottle, combine 3/4 cups water, 1/8 cup witch hazel, 5 drops lavender and 3 drops melaleuca (or tea tree oil). Be sure to test the spray on a small corner to be sure oils don’t damage your brand of mat.
In an 8 oz. glass spray bottle of distilled water, add 7 drops wild orange, 7 drops grapefruit and 7 drops lemon for a citrus blend. Shake well before each use.
Other options include:
- 15 drops of wild orange and 15 drops of peppermint for a citrus mint.
- 10 drops cedarwood and 10 drops sandalwood.
- My favorite: 10 drops bergamot, 10 drops lavender and 5 drops ylang ylang.
EASY SOFT SCRUB:
- For cleaning sinks and tubs, mix 5 drops lemon, peppermint, or wild orange essential oils with baking soda and enough water to make a paste.
- Store cleanser in a covered glass jar because essential oils will break down plastic.
- Scoop out cleanser with your hand as needed, and scrub and wipe down as usual—a soft scrubbing brush works great!
In a 4 oz glass spray bottle, combine 1 tablespoon aloe vera gel, 20 drops Protective blend, fill the rest with water, and shake well before use. This is a great all-natural option for kids to use.
In a 4 oz bottle of distilled water, add 5 drops lavender, 2 drops wild orange, and 5 drops Melaleuca (or tea tree) essential oil. Another option: 15 drops Protective Blend.
Use to disinfect hands, counters, doorknobs, toilet seats, and more. Shake well before each use.
Sprinkle baking soda and 1-2 drops of lemon or Melaleuca (or tea tree) essential oil into the toilet bowl. Scrub with toilet brush and spray toilet seat and bowl with Disinfecting Spray or All Purpose Cleaner.
Diffuse 3 drops lemon, 3 drops orange
I would love for you to join me for my next Introduction to Essential Oils live webinar at 8 p.m. on June 20. To register for the online class go to:
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to makeover your cleaning cabinet. If you are looking for a recipe I didn’t mention, email me! firstname.lastname@example.org
Next time, we’ll discuss oils to support the body in managing stress and reducing anxiety. Who is excited?!