Meditation can be challenging, especially when you need it the most. Fortunately a few drops of essential oils can help you get the most out of your meditation practice. There are many aromatherapy essential oils that can reduce stress and tension, boost your focus and concentration, deepen your breathing, and help eliminate negative thoughts. We have found ten essential oils that you can use individually or in a blend to make your meditation time more effective and enjoyable.
How To Use Oils For Meditation
There are two main ways to use essential oils in your meditation. The first is by diffusing it in the air. For this, you can use an aroma oil diffuser, to allow the scent of the essential oil to permeate the room. You can also find scented candles or incense that you can burn during meditation. The second method is to rub diluted essential oils into your skin. Be aware that essential oils are extremely volatile, and will need to be diluted with something like skin cream, carrier oil, or water, in order to be used safely. If you’re using a new oil, try a tiny test spot on your skin with the diluted oil. If your skin has a reaction, you should see it in 45 minutes. If you have a reaction you will need to dilute the oil further or choose a different scent.
The Best Essential Oils to Enhance Mediation
- Sandalwood oil.
Sandalwood has a sweet woody scent and has been used for thousands of years in the spiritual rituals and practices of Asia. Sandalwood oil has a wide range of properties, from antiseptic to aphrodisiac, and it’s calming scent also works as a natural sedative. That makes it perfect for relaxing your body and clearing your mind for a successful meditation practice. Unfortunately, Sandalwood is being over-harvested and becoming endangered, so we recommend choosing another scent with similar properties (like lavender, chamomile, vetiver, frankincense, myrrh, or palo santo) if possible.
- Patchouli oil.
Patchouli is a traditional scent used in meditation for a sense of protection, groundedness and warmth. This calming oil has a round, full-bodied scent. It also blends well with sandalwood, lavender, and many other oils we recommend, so you can use it as a base for a meditation essential oil blend.
- Lavender oil.
Lavender is popular oil that is most often used for relaxation and to promote a good night’s rest. Many people use lavender in “dream satchels” which they place under pillows to promote good dreams and restful sleep. If you meditate to reduces stress and anxiety, or to help you sleep, lavender is a great choice for an essential oil.
- Chamomile oil.
Chamomile, especially roman chamomile, is another essential oil that is perfect for promoting rest and sleep. As anyone who is familiar with chamomile tea can tell you, chamomile is great for relaxation and can help you battle anxiety and achieve clarity of mind. This oil is helpful when meditating while experiencing stress, anger, insomnia, headaches or depression. Note that chamomile is contraindicated for use during pregnancy.
- Peppermint oil.
Peppermint is a familiar scent that helps calm nerves and is deeply cooling and soothing. If you often feel dull or drowsy during meditation a few drops of this oil will boost your wakefulness. If you feel a bit congested or just want to enhance your breathing, put a small amount on your chest or under your nose before you sit. It’s also great for promoting mental clarity, and it will aid you in concentration and mental focus.
- Ylang Ylang oil.
Ylang Ylang is a powerful floral scent that has been known to reduce tension in the body. It’s also been suggested that ylang-ylang is helpful for improving flexibility during your yoga practice, and even helps release negative emotions, like depression, frustration, and sadness. Use this oil to add a bit more joy and happiness in your meditation practice.
- Rose oil.
If you’re looking for a boost in the self-confidence department, try your next meditation session with some rose essential oil. Rose is known as the fragrance of love. It can help open your heart and leave you feeling open and receptive to romantic and spiritual connection. Rose oil also reduces stress, anxiety, pain and mensural cramps.
- Sage oil.
If you’re having trouble staying in the moment, or you’re feeling overwhelmed by the negative aspects of your life, clary sage is great for clarity, and for banishing negative influences in your life. It’s also good for restoring energy, keeping you grounded, and providing overall mind-body balance.
- Orange oil.
Orange works well with many of the scents we’ve listed, and like peppermint, it’s another scent that wakes up the senses and mind. This oil is excellent for improving your energy level and promoting cognition, focus, and concentration. It’s also a great mood booster, and is helpful for stress, insomnia, anxiety, pain and depression.
- Cedarwood oil.
Cedarwood is a woody, sweet and grounding scent that can protect you from negativity, chaos and instability. It’s great for fostering the mind-body connection that’s so important for your meditation. If you’re finding it hard to sit and focus on your breathing, this calming oil can help put you in the right frame of mind.
Meditation promotes good health, lessens the impact of stress on your body, and helps you get a restful sleep, stay more productive at work, and improve your circulation and immune system. You can boost the benefits of meditation and make it easier to meditate by using one or more essential oils. Bonus—add one or more of these meditation scents to your yoga mat spray to give your yoga practice a similar boost!