With essential oils, Christmas shopping doesn’t have to be difficult.
There are countless varieties of essential oils available, and each offers unique benefits.
With this guide, you can find the right essential oil for everyone on your list, helping to make their holidays merry and bright.
Essential Oils for New Moms
If you have an exhausted mother of a newborn in your life, she will appreciate receiving essential oils for Christmas, particularly lavender and orange oils.
A 2008 study in Early Human Development compared infants bathed with lavender oil to those bathed without the oil, and results showed that infants bathed in lavender oil had lower cortisol levels, cried for less time, and spent more time sleeping deeply after their baths. (1)
Mothers also benefited from the lavender oil, as they demonstrated lower cortisol levels when infants bathed with it.
Moms can also benefit from orange oil, as a 2016 study in the European Journal of Integrative Medicine found that women who had recently given birth enjoyed improved sleep quality when they consumed water containing orange oil with each of their three daily meals, compared to women who received a placebo. (2)
Essential oils can give new moms the gift of sleep this Christmas.
Essential Oils to Fight Against Headaches
A friend or relative who suffers from headaches can benefit from evening primrose or eucalyptus essential oils.
A study published by the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that eucalyptus essential oils exerted a pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory effect. (3)
A study included in a 2013 publication of the Journal of Functional Foods provided support for the use of evening primrose oil for headaches, finding that this type of essential oil had an anti-inflammatory effect and improved pain sensitivity. (4)
Essential oils could take the place of over-the-counter medications for headaches.
Essential Oils Providing a Calming Effect
For loved ones who are in need of some relaxation, several essential oils can have positive effects.
For example, a sweet orange essential oil can quell anxiety, according to a 2012 study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. (5)
Participants in this study inhaled either sweet orange essential oil, tea tree oil, or water, prior to undergoing a stressful situation.
Study results showed that participants who inhaled the sweet orange oil did not experience significant changes in anxiety or tranquility during the stressful situation, whereas participants in the other groups did, suggesting that the sweet orange oil had a protective effect against anxiety.
A 2009 study in Holistic Nursing Practice demonstrated that rosemary and lavender oils could also have a relaxing effect, as both oils were found to reduce heart rate and anxiety among students who were taking a test. (6)
Essential Oils for Fitness Fanatics
Those interested in health and fitness will also appreciate the gift of essential oils this Christmas season.
Loved ones who are trying to slim down can benefit from grapefruit oil in particular, as a 2005 study in Neuroscience Letters found that the aroma of grapefruit oil was effective for decreasing both appetite and body weight. (7)
Essential oils can also help fitness lovers to improve their exercise performance.
In a 2001 study in the Journal of Sport & Exercise Physiology, athletes who were exposed to the scent of peppermint oil were able to run faster, complete more push-ups, and exert greater grip force compared to those who did not experience the aroma of peppermint. (8)
Based on the results of the research, essential oils are an ideal gift for those looking to lose weight or improve their exercise performance.
Essential Oils for Beauty
Beyond benefits for those interested in fitness, essential oils can be useful for those interested in health and beauty.
For those suffering from irritated skin, chamomile oil can be especially useful.
A 2010 study in the Journal of Veterinary Science indicated that chamomile essential oil was effective for treating eczema. (9)
Friends and relatives who want to maintain a youthful appearance would enjoy receiving lemon essential oil; a 2013 study in the European Journal of Medicinal Plants demonstrated that lemon oil could treat skin damage and therefore have an anti-aging effect. (1o)
The results of the study suggested that lemon oil was more effective for this purpose than vitamin E, which is often used in anti-aging creams.
Energy-Boosting Essential Oils
If someone in your life has been experiencing low energy or fatigue, essential oils can provide relief.
A study in a 2004 publication of the Journal Planta Medica found that when participants inhaled ylang ylang oil, their attention and alertness levels improved when compared to those in a control group. (11)
Peppermint oil can also be useful for those who need an energy boost.
In a 2005 study in the International Journal of Psychophysiology, subjects who inhaled peppermint odor demonstrated less sleepiness when exposed to a dark room when compared to those who were not exposed to peppermint odor. (12)
Peppermint oil could, therefore, increase energy during times of sleepiness.
Based on the research, essential oils can be effective for fighting against sleepiness and for a variety of other purposes.
Studies with essential oils have shown a number of benefits, ranging from improved sleep to enhanced exercise performance.
The numerous varieties of essential oils and their multiple uses make them a thoughtful Christmas gift for just about anyone on your shopping list.
You can purchase essential oils online or in health food and drug stores; you can also support small business owners who sell essential oils as consultants for larger companies.
You can find essential oils in various sizes and prices, and you can even buy sample packs that contain multiple oils for one affordable price.
With something for every budget and lifestyle, essential oils truly are an ideal Christmas gift!