There’s one essential oil that I believe should be in every household: lavandula angustifolia more commonly known as lavender. This beautiful “mother of all essential oils” has a multitude of practical uses. I have certainly put the so-called beneficial properties to the test time and time again and have never been let down.
My first encounter with lavender oil was when I was studying aromatherapy. I was making pasta for dinner and as I was transferring the pot of freshly boiled water to the sink my oven mitt got caught on a protruding part of the stove, causing the pot to tip and splash boiling water all over my forearm.
The pain was excruciatingly relentless and as I looked closely, it had actually burnt away layers and layers of skin. Luckily for me, I had just been learning about the healing properties of lavender, in particular the historical uses for the treatment of burns and wounds of soldiers at war.
One drop of lavender oil on my burn, morning and night, for a couple of weeks was all it took to completely heal my wound. I suffered neither infection nor scar. There is no evidence of the burn whatsoever. Amazing, don’t you think?
~ Lavender is the essential oil most commonly associated with the treatment of burns and healing of the skin. It has cytophylactic properties that promote rapid healing and help reduce scarring.
~ Lavender is beneficial in alleviating inflammation such as acne, dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis and boils.
~ Lavender is beneficial in treating sunburn, helping to reduce redness.
~ Lavender is beneficial for relieving muscular aches and pains.
~ Lavender has a harmonising effect on the nervous system, reputedly acting as a sedative in conditions of mental and emotional agitation and unrest, calming the mind, while also being uplifting when feeling of depressed.
~ Lavender is regarded as the first choice in the treatment of insomnia.
~ Lavender is also beneficial in helping to prevent itching and scratching of insect bites.
I know it sounds too good to be true, but I urge you to believe me, and many far greater practitioners than I who also regard this oil in the highest esteem. My favourite reference to lavender is from internationally acclaimed aromatherapist Philippe Mailhebiau who compares lavender to Mother Teresa:
“Tireless, always even-tempered, with unfailing gentleness and devotion, lavandula cares for and clams, listens to and remedies a thousand ills,” Mailhebiau says. “She takes care of children, adults and elderly, animals, plants, the earth and sky. She looks after everyone with equal love and if there is anyone in the world whom she neglects, it is herself.”
My favourite everyday uses for lavender
~ Before bedtime to help promote a peaceful night’s sleep add 10 drops of lavender oil to a warm bath.
~ When you have a headache, gently rub one drop of lavender oil to your temples.
~ When you get sunburnt, add 20 drops of lavender oil to 15ml of jojoba oil and gently apply to sunburned area (or any good quality base oil such as rosehip, sweet almond or avocado oil).
* Lavender is included in all Be Genki Tranquility products designed to be used in the evening when you’re unwinding from the day and preparing yourself for bedtime.
** Please don’t confuse or lavandula angustifolia (lavender) with lavandula spica (spike lavender) as they are not the same. They have different properties and applications.
*** If you would like further reading, two brilliant, comprehensive and easy-to-read books on aromatherapy, and the source of the above facts about lavender are The Complete Book of Essential Oils & Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood and The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy by Salvatore Battaglia.
Click here to read the version on NineMSN