Hello, I’m Anna, and I kind of don’t like summer.
I mean, I really want to. Who doesn’t love summer? It’s warm, it’s sunny, the days get longer, and you get to wear sundresses EVERY DAY if you want to. There’s nothing not to love! Except for, you know, sunburn, bug bites, poison ivy, dehydration, heat exhaustion...etc. etc.
I’m sorry. I said it.
Fortunately, it’s possible to not just survive summer – we can thrive, too, thanks partly to the incredible essential oil market that we have access to today. Here are 5 essential oils to help you love summer even more (post-sunburn stinging no longer included).
*Here’s your disclaimer: nope, I didn’t ask the FDA for approval in giving you this advice. But I got a little feedback from Mother Earth and she seems to know what’s up. If you are planning to ingest essential oils, please always purchase oils that are labeled as an “essential oil supplement” and “therapeutic grade”. We at Uprise recommend DoTerra (and no, they didn’t pay us to say that, either).
Clary sage is useful for more than just its deep, sweet, nutty fragrance (even though it does smell hella good - which is probably why it's the main ingredient in the famous Eau de Cologne). When salt water, chlorine, or dry summer days dry out your locks, you can add it to shampoo and conditioner to promote healthy, nourished hair. And because we never know when things might get a little sweaty, you can also use it to deodorize on the fly. Combine 1/4 cup aloe vera gel (or juice), 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, and 10 drops clary sage essential oil in a glass spray bottle for a crisp, refreshing, natural deodorant.
But one of clary sage's ~juiciest~ qualities is its reputation of being an aphrodisiac. (Allegedly, it can "seriously increase performance and interest in sexual activities".) Try massaging it into the bottoms of the feet or adding some to a warm bath next time you're going for a little nooky. I don't know about performance, but clary sage can diffuse tension, balance out-of-whack hormones that may result in a low libido, and ease you into a sweeter, more sensual state of mind.
Lavender is probably THE perfect summer oil. It’s an anti-bacterial – meaning it’s great for cuts and scrapes – and it’s safe enough to use even with children. It can fight athlete’s foot when you’ve gone on one too many sweaty midsummer runs, heal burns from the when you got a little too excited flipping burgers on the new grill, reduce stinging from bug bites, soothe sunburned skin, and ease sore muscles and sprains. Seriously, is there anything it can’t do??
For anything skin-related (cuts, burns, bug bites, sunburns, chapped lips, etc.) a few drops of lavender oil, plus a carrier oil if you like, will work wonders. You get bonus points if you add a little to your next glass of sparkling water, mojito, or homemade ice cream – nothing adds an “oomph” like lavender!
Summertime calls for outdoorsy summer fun - hiking, biking, getting your beach on, and the like - and accidents can happen. Lemongrass is an incredible addition to your first aid kit. It's an anti-microbial, meaning it fights bacteria that can enter the body through cuts and scrapes, and an analgesic, meaning it offers immediate topical pain relief and reduces inflammation. A few drops applied to your clothes (or your pup's bandana!) can ward off ticks and fleas. Plus, when massaged into the skin with a carrier oil, it can relax sore, knotted, or pulled muscles after a long hike or bike ride. To supercharge your relaxation, add lemongrass oil to an Epsom salt bath. Amazing!
More reasons to love lemongrass? It can fade headaches from those hot summer days when rubbed into the back of the neck or diffused into the air. As an added bonus, lemongrass will also ease fatigue and boost your mood when massaged into the temples - perfect when long hours of sunshine wear you out.
If you think like me, then summer calls for camping, which calls for s’mores. But life is unfair, and too many s'mores make for one unhappy tummy. Fortunately, marjoram is an effective digestive. It can stimulate the secretion of digestive juices, just like it helps to remove toxic elements, excess water, and salts from the body. (Goodbye, post-margarita bloat.) You can add a few drops to a shot glass of water and knock it back if you got a little indulgent at that barbecue, or drip it into cool sparkling water.
Another plus? Marjoram can soothe tense muscles after a hard summer workout. Add it to a carrier oil or lotion, rub all your sore spots away, and say a thank you to the “herb of happiness”.
Rose oil is a luscious, cooling oil with an incredible array of uses. Long summer days can dry out skin, but a swab of rose oil several times a day can even out your skin tone, balance out the moisture levels in your skin, and give you a glowing complexion. Rose oil is also magnificently cooling. Add some to a spray bottle and mist your face, neck, and chest to prevent overheating. If you’re planning a serious outdoor adventure this summer, you may also want to include rose oil in your first aid kit: in case of emergencies, rose oil acts as a powerful hemostatic, speeding up blood coagulation to prevent excessive bleeding after a bad fall or injury.
Or, if you’re just planning a danger-free evening at home with someone special, rose oil is said to have the highest energy frequency of any oil. Diffusing it or rubbing it onto the wrists and neck can help you to open your heart and promote a spiritual connection...or maybe a ~different sort~ of connection.
There you have it! Five incredibly useful, very versatile, and occasionally sexy oils for all your summertime fun. You can thank me later when clary sage jazzes up date night or marjoram helps you out with that post-bonfire bloat. Go forth and thrive.
Have any questions about more incredible uses for these oils? Or did we miss one of your favorites in this list? Leave us a comment below!
Anna Squires studies political science, journalism, and creative writing at Colorado College. There is nothing she enjoys more in a yoga class than laughing so hard she falls out of a pose, especially since then she doesn’t have to hold it anymore. She hails from Atlanta, GA.