Can essential oils help you sleep better? Yes, they can.
I found out the hard way by experimenting on myself. I learned about the best essential oil recipes for sleep. But I had been a skeptic until my circumstances made me desperate.
You see, a death in the family made me an insomniac. I had so much stress and anguish in my life that it spilled over into my dreams. Sleeping wasn’t restful anymore.
A friend knew my anxiety was through the roof. So she gifted me a bottle of doTerra’s Serenity oil.
- The First Time I Tried Essential Oils for Sleep and Anxiety
- What Happened Once I Learned about Essential Oil Blends for Sleep
- The Top Essential Oils for Sound Sleep and Relaxation
- My Top Recipes for Restful Sleep
- Where to Buy Essential Oils to Make the Sleep Blends
- Recipe for Winding down at the End of the Day
- Get a Kit to Simplify Blending Essential Oils for Sleep
- A Cheap and Simple Recipe for Relieving Stress Before Bed
- An Easy Essential Oil Recipe to Prepare Your Bedroom for Sleeping
- Recipe to Clear the Mind Before Sleeping
- Recipe for Saying Goodnight to Insomnia
- A Recipe for Pleasant Dreams
- Drift off to Sleep in Paradise
- Recipe for Sleeping Better During Perimenopause and Pms
- How to Do Aromatherapy for Better Sleep
- Blissful Thoughts at Bedtime
The First Time I Tried Essential Oils for Sleep and Anxiety
It smelled like dirt and lavender, and it wasn’t especially appealing. I didn’t have a diffuser, and I wasn’t sure I’d want to make my house smell like that anyway.
But at some point in the middle of a restless night, I went to the bathroom and pulled the Serenity oil out of the medicine cabinet.
I unscrewed the plastic top of the little amber glass bottle and let some drops fall into the palm of my hand. At the time, I didn’t know anything about carrier oils either. I just slathered the liquid on both wrists and dabbed some underneath my nose for good measure.
That was the first night I slept more than four hours without waking up.
What Happened Once I Learned about Essential Oil Blends for Sleep
I admit I became addicted to the stuff. Some people snort drugs, but I was sniffing essential oils. First, I experimented with straight lavender. Then I moved on to the more expensive stuff like frankincense.
I was lucky in that I never had an adverse skin reaction–possibly because I was careful which brands of essential oil I used.
Once I bought a diffuser, I learned about the blending essential oils in recipes. I’m not talking about the kind you can use for cooking. I mean recipes for aromatherapy.
In other words, I found out it was possible to combine certain oils to obtain the results I desired.
It was all downhill from there. Pretty soon I had at least one bottle of practically every essential oil on the market. I looked forward to mixing blends for sleeping with all the obsession of an addict.
I refilled empty bottles with my custom recipes and handed them out to friends who complained about their lack of sleep.
Now it’s time for me to share with you my favorite essential oil recipes for restful sleep. I hope you find exactly what you need for sweet dreams tonight.
The Top Essential Oils for Sound Sleep and Relaxation
|Oil||What it’s like||What it does||Where to find it|
|Frankincense||Earthy||Relieves stress and pain|
|Geranium||Floral||Restores balance (and repels mosquitoes)|
|Jasmine||Floral||Improves mood (also ancient aphrodisiac)|
|Lavender||Floral and woody||Soothes, reduces pain and anxiety|
|Marjoram||Woody, camphoraceous||Comforts and calms|
|Sandalwood||Woody||Warming and uplifting|
|Vanilla||Sweet||Warming and calming|
|Vetiver||Woody and musky||Empowers other aromas|
|Ylang Ylang||Floral, woodsy, tropical||Calming, promotes patience, relieves pain|
My Top Recipes for Restful Sleep
I never found out the exact formula for Serenity essential oil. I did come up with a recipe that’s pretty close (I think it smells better):
- 5 drops of lavender
- 4 drops of Roman chamomile
- 6 drops of ylang-ylang
- 3 drops of sandalwood
- 2 drops of marjoram
- 1 drop of vanilla
- 1 drop of cedarwood
If you compare these ingredients to what’s written on the bottle of Serenity, you’ll see that I leave out Ho Wood Leaf and vetiver. This helps the blend smell less earthy.
Where to Buy Essential Oils to Make the Sleep Blends
Now you might be wondering which brands of essential oils I’d recommend to make these recipes. Honestly, although I started out using oils from doTerra and Young Living that was because those were the only brands I knew about.
Since then, I’ve branched out. Throughout this article, I’ll suggest sets and individual oils to help you make these recipes.
Recipe for Winding down at the End of the Day
Part of the trick to sleeping better is unwinding before bed. The next recipe is ideal for diffusing after dinner at least an hour before you go to sleep.
This recipe has oils that you’re not likely to find in a starter set. Therefore, you’ll probably have to get them individually.
The multi-level marketing companies that sell essential oils put a high price on frankincense. Try this one instead:
NOW Essential Oils, Frankincense Oil
NOW Foods steam-distills the resin from the Boswellia Serrata tree. I like their products because they have careful quality controls and sell at very reasonable prices.
Frankincense is an ancient remedy with a woody fragrance. Generally speaking, people either love it or hate it. If it’s not your thing, skip down to the next recipe.
NOW Foods Geranium Oil
Geranium is an aroma that can help with helping you find a calm balance. Again, it’s made by a reputable company and won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
In fact, NOW offers recipes on their website. Here’s one they call “Calming Night” (1).
- 4 drops cypress oil
- 4 drops lavender oil
- 4 drops marjoram oil
Add those to your diffuser, fluff your pillow, and enjoy.
NOW Essential Oils, Marjoram Oil
Marjoram isn’t a delicious scent on its own unless you like camphor. But it promotes peace and calm like a walk through the forest.
Get a Kit to Simplify Blending Essential Oils for Sleep
Now Essential Oils, Let There Be Peace & Quiet Aromatherapy Kit
Up to this point I’ve mostly talked about blends you can make yourself. Feel free to experiment with the premade blended oils, too.
This kit comes with the Peaceful Sleep Blend made with chamomile, lavender, Ylang Ylang, sandalwood, tangerine, and orange oils. It smells delightful.
You’ll also find lavender, eucalyptus, and peppermint individual oils. The latter two come in handy if you need a little respiratory relief from a stuffy nose.
A Cheap and Simple Recipe for Relieving Stress Before Bed
If you’ve had a day, you’d rather forget, try the next blend to put a smile back on your face. It uses basic oils found in many starter packs. They’re both low-cost.
- 6 drops of lavender
- 4 drops of lemon
As you can see, you can make more or less of this recipe by keeping the same proportions of 3:2.
An Easy Essential Oil Recipe to Prepare Your Bedroom for Sleeping
- 5 drops of lavender
- 3 drops of chamomile
Again, it’s easy to alter the amount depending on the size of your diffuser. If you have a nebulizing diffuser that doesn’t use water, then you only need a few drops. But if you have an ultrasonic diffuser with a large water tank, you can double or triple the recipe.
Here are a couple more inexpensive kits of essential oils to get you started.
Natrogix Bliss Essential Oils – Top 9
In the box, you’ll find lemon, lavender, frankincense, eucalyptus, tea tree, lemongrass, rosemary, peppermint, and orange oils. All of them are tested by gas chromatography and mass spectrometry to be pure. Plus, there are bottled in an FDA-certified facility in the USA.
Lagunamoon Essential Oils with Travel Bag
Lagunamoon includes an exciting variety of oils like jasmine, vetiver, sandalwood, tea tree, lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, sandalwood, orange, lemongrass, and chamomile. They test the oils with mass spectrometry and gas chromatography and offer MSDS sheets if you request them.
Recipe to Clear the Mind Before Sleeping
Why is it that when we lay down to go to sleep, our minds start working harder? If you need to calm the chattering monkeys and focus on getting rest, use this:
- 2 drops rose
- 2 drops grapefruit (or bergamot)
- 2 drops clary sage
The fresh and natural scent will clear out the confusion.
Be aware that citrus scents don’t just reduce stress; they may also make you more alert. Take advantage of this recipe by breathing deeply and writing out a to-do list for the next day.
Recipe for Saying Goodnight to Insomnia
If you can’t fall asleep on a regular basis, it’s smart to talk to your doctor about solutions. But if you have occasional bouts of insomnia, give this one a try:
- 2 drops Roman chamomile
- 2 drops clary sage
- 2 drops sandalwood
- 2 drops rose
Instead of diffusing it, you can put it in your bathwater if you use oils that are appropriate for topical treatment. Be sure to read the fine print to make sure the manufacturer says the oils are appropriate for massages and using on the skin instead of just aromatherapy.
Plant Therapy Top 6 Organic Essential Oils Set
Plant Therapy makes essential oils that are safe to use topically. Moreover, their oils are USDA organic, which is a major bonus.
Each one is quality-checked by third-party laboratories and approved by Robert Tisserand, a world-renowned expert who does organoleptic testing.
This kit features sweet orange, tea tree, lavender, eucalyptus, lemon, and peppermint.
A Recipe for Pleasant Dreams
I dream a lot. When I’m under stress, my dreams tend to be disturbing. If that describes you, too, see if the next recipe helps you have sweet dreams.
Vetiver oil is one I put off trying until I discovered it’s used as a fixative in perfumes. It smells both musky and woody.
By itself, it’s not the most attractive scent. But when you combine it with other oils, it seems to give them more staying power.
Edens Garden Vetiver Essential Oil
Edens Garden is a family business owned by women. They sell directly to the public. Additionally, they test both raw ingredients and finished oils for purity. You can request the batch analysis directly from them.
Drift off to Sleep in Paradise
I once spent ten days in paradise. I went to Hawaii for a wedding and didn’t want to come home again. Every once in a while I diffuse the following recipe and pretend I’m back in the islands.
For bonus points, enjoy it on Aloha Friday.
Edens Garden Jasmine Essential Oil, 100% Pure Therapeutic Grade
Brace yourself before you view the price of pure jasmine essential oil. This is the good stuff; the real deal.
Why is jasmine essential oil so expensive? For one, each flower has to be hand-harvested so that it’s not bruised. Bruised blossoms have a disagreeable odor.
Next, it takes 8 million blooms to make about 2 pounds of absolute oil. (And you thought gas was expensive.)
Edens Garden sources their jasmine from India. It’s extracted with solvents from the flowers. Dilute it before using it on your skin.
On the bright side, it has a shelf life of 4 years.
NOW Jasmine Oil
If you want the pleasure without the high price, try this fragrance oil from NOW Foods. It’s synthesized but still has a strong scent.
Sandalwood 100% Pure in Jojoba (30%/70% Ratio)
Sandalwood is another essential oil that’s costly in its pure form. This bottle is 30% Caledonia sandalwood and 70% jojoba oil, so it’s prediluted but not synthetic.
Edens Garden Vanilla Oleoresin Essential Oil
Yes, there really is a vanilla essential oil. I wasn’t expecting you to use the flavoring you put in cookies. It was extracted without the use of hexane and has a deep brown color.
Recipe for Sleeping Better During Perimenopause and Pms
When one of my friends described restless sleep, hot flashes in the middle of the night, plus anxiety attacks, I researched a solution. Now she enjoys a little aromatherapy before bedtime.
She commented that her teenage daughter finds that this recipe helps with PMS as well.
- 4 drops lavender oil
- 2 drops ylang-ylang
- 2 drops cedarwood
- 1 drop sweet orange (you can leave this out if you prefer)
Ylang-ylang magnifies the sedative effect of the lavender. It’s also a traditional remedy for female troubles.
Plant Therapy Ylang Ylang Complete Essential Oil
This ylang-ylang was steam-distilled from tree blossoms. It’s floral, woodsy, and tropical.
Artizen Cedarwood Essential Oil
Its delightful aroma may remind you of new shoe trees…but it’s a pleasant sedative that will lull you to sleep. You can relax knowing that Artizen offers a lifetime warranty and satisfaction guarantee on their oils.
How to Do Aromatherapy for Better Sleep
We’ve talked a lot about the essential oils that help you sleep better. Although you can mix them up in a spray bottle with water or rubbing alcohol and spritz them on your pillow, there is a better way to enjoy them.
Here are two kinds of diffuser to help you fragrance your home.
Nebulizing Pure Essential Oil Aromatherapy Diffuser
This simple but beautiful nebulizing diffuser disperses nothing but pure essential oil into the air. You don’t need water, alcohol, or any other carrier oil to use it.
It’s extremely quiet, a big benefit when you’re trying to calm down to sleep. It hums softly for two minutes as it atomizes the oil. Then it stops for one minute before it runs again. The full cycle lasts two hours. Then it shuts down automatically.
It’s perfect if you don’t want to add more humidity to your house, or if you want the undiluted aroma at full strength.
URPOWER 2nd Version Essential Oil Diffuser
The other option is an ultrasonic diffuser with a water tank like this one. It holds 100 milliliters and runs up to six hours.
The settings allow you to choose between continuous or intermittent misting. It’s also a very quiet device. Furthermore, it serves as a nightlight if you like. It hypnotically changes between seven different colors.
For a 100 mL liter tank, you only need a few drops of essential oil. Try cutting the recipes in half if they’re too strong.
Blissful Thoughts at Bedtime
You may be happy to know that many medical studies found that essential oils (especially lavender) have a positive effect on sleep (2).
Just like a favorite scent can bring back blissful memories, essential oils can trigger your brain to relax.
We hope you discovered a new oil or blend to try tonight. Let me know in the comments below how it worked for you.
- https://www.nowfoods.com/now/recipes/relaxing-diffusion-recipes accessed 22 April 2019
- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24720812 published June 2014, accessed 22 April 2019
- https://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/natural-medicine/aromatherapy/aromatherapy.htm by Kathi Keville, 11 April 2007, accessed 22 April 2019