An Essential Oil Use Chart

Many of our projects call for natural oils as ingredients, so here’s a comprehensive list of essential oils and their uses, along with some detailed information on more than forty of the most popular oils to explore, I have listed their properties along with pairings, substitutes, descriptions, and my recommended choice.

essential oils

savvyhomemade.com is reader-supported, if you buy via the links here we may earn a small affiliate commission at no cost to you, please read our full affiliate disclosure here.

M to P Essentials

Mandarin

Fragrance: Warm, citrusy and fruity with a dense floral odor
Note: Top to Middle
Blends Well With: Basil- black pepper- cinnamon- clary sage- clove- frankincense- geranium- grapefruit- jasmine- juniper- lemon- myrrh- neroli- nutmeg- patchouli- petitgrain- rose- sandalwood- ylang ylang

About:

This oil smells good enough to eat, so it’s not surprising that it’s used to treat stomach problems. Dilute with olive oil and rubbed on a child’s tummy in a clockwise circular movement to calm an anxious child. This oil is very good at reducing stretch marks and scarring. However mandarin does tend to increase your appetite so if you are trying to lose weight give this one a miss.

I Recommend:
Mandarin Essential from Plant Therapy
Mandarin Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Marigold/Tagetes

See Tagetes
Fragrance:
Note:
Blends Well With:

Marjoram

Fragrance: Bright, sweet, balsamic
Note: Middle
Blends Well With: Basil – bergamot – black pepper – cedarwood – chamomile – cypress – eucalyptus – eucalyptus lemon – fennel – juniper – lavender – lemon – orange – peppermint – pine – rosemary – tea tree – thyme

About:

Marjoram is used equally as a culinary and therapeutic herb. It’s regarded as a soothing herb, since it calms digestive, breathing and anxiety conditions. With regard to pains and aches, and also as a relaxing agent, add marjoram to your massage oil blend. Ideal for bronchitis, bruises, common colds, bowel irregularity, coughs, dysmenorrhoea, wind, headache, congestion, high blood pressure, sleeping disorders, leucorrhoea, menstruation issues, muscle pains and tightness, sore throats, strains, and vertigo.

I Recommend:
Marjoram Essential from Plant Therapy
Marjoram Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Myrrh

Fragrance: Hot and smoky, herbaceous with a touch of dry wood
Note: Base
Blends Well With: Bergamot- clove- cypress- eucalyptus- frankincense- geranium- grapefruit- jasmine- juniper- lavender- lemon- neroli- patchouli- pine- rose- rosemary- sandalwood- tea tree- ylang ylang

About:

With its deep and warm woody fragrance, it is useful for dealing with grief, anger and rejection by promoting feelings of peace and tranquillity. Myrrh is a very powerful antiseptic and is especially good at treating fungal infections such as athletes’ foot. Along with helping to ease asthma, coughs, gum infections and thrush, this is also a good oil to boost your immune system.

I Recommend:
Myrrh Essential from Plant Therapy
Myrrh Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Neroli (Orange)

Fragrance: Sweet, fresh and camphoraceous
Note: Middle
Blends Well With: Bergamot- eucalyptus- lavandin- lavender- lemon- tea tree

About:

Promotes healing of the skin, its suitable for all skin types (especially mature) and is particularly good at healing scars, stretch marks and nappy rash. Neroli is an antidepressant and aphrodisiac giving a feeling of inner peace and contentment.

I Recommend:
Neroli Essential from Plant Therapy
Neroli Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Nutmeg

Fragrance: Spicy, warm, and nutty
Note: Middle
Blends Well With: bay – clary sage – coriander – geranium – lavender – lime – mandarin – oakmoss – orange – peru balsam – petitgrain – rosemary

I Recommend:
Nutmeg Essential from Plant Therapy
Nutmeg Essential from from Mountain Rose

Oakmoss

Fragrance: Dry and earthy like bark
Note: Base
Blends Well With: Anise – bay – bergamot – clary sage – eucalyptus – ginger – lavender – lime – orange – palmarosa – tea tree – vetiver – ylang ylang

About:

This oil is used within the perfume industry for its fixative properties, it is quite viscous, and will need to be heated up to aid pourability.

I Recommend:
Oakmoss Essential from Amazon
Oakmoss Essential from Mountain Rose

Orange

Fragrance: Sweet, sugary, and citrus
Note: Top
Blends Well With: Bay- bergamot- black pepper- cinnamon- clary sage- clove- coriander- eucalyptus- frankincense- geranium- ginger- grapefruit- jasmine- juniper- lavender- lemon- marjoram- myrrh, neroli- nutmeg- patchouli- petitgrain- rose- sandalwood- vetiver- ylang ylang

About:

As with other citrus oils is very good for the skin, and is often be found in a wide range of skincare products, perfumes and detergents, and can be especially good for dull and oily skin conditions. It can help to eliminate, stress, nerves, palpitations, water retention and toxins.

I Recommend:
Orange Essential from Plant Therapy
Orange Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Palmarosa

Fragrance: Fresh and light
Note: Middle
Blends Well With: bay – clary sage – coriander – geranium – lavender – lime – mandarin – oakmoss – orange – peru balsam – petitgrain – rosemary

About:

This essential oil will bring a mild, rosy scent to your recipes as well as a burst of citrus. This fresh and light essential oil blends perfectly with all our other oils, giving the finished recipe the aroma of fresh summer flowers.

I Recommend:
Palmarosa Essential from Plant Therapy
Palmarosa Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

 

Patchouli

Fragrance: Earthy and smoky, spicy and musky
Note: Base
Blends Well With: Bergamot- black pepper- cedarwood- cinnamon- clary sage- clove- coriander- frankincense- geranium- ginger- grapefruit- jasmine- lavender- lemongrass- mandarin- myrrh- neroli- oakmoss- orange- rose- sandalwood

About:

A good aphrodisiac that will help relieve depression. Makes a first-rate skin tonic for dry flaky skin and can be used to treat eczema, acne, dandruff and athletes foot. Patchouli also makes a good insect repellent.

I Recommend:
Patchouli Essential from Plant Therapy
Patchouli Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Peppermint

Fragrance: Fresh and incredibly minty, hot, herbaceous, with a vegetative hint
Note: Middle
Blends Well With: Basil- benzoin- black pepper- cypress- eucalyptus- geranium- grapefruit- juniper- lavender- lemon- marjoram- niaouli- pine-rosemary- tea tree- other mints

About:

A stimulating oil that can be used to ease both headaches and migraines when used at the start of an attack. It can assist memory and combat fatigue. With its warming qualities, peppermint is very good at easing muscle pains along with colic, stomach cramps, colds, coughs and flu symptoms.

I Recommend:
Peppermint Essential from Plant Therapy
Peppermint Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Petitgrain

Fragrance: A fresh and floral citrus scent, with a woody-herbaceous trace
Note: Top to Middle
Blends Well With: Benzoin- bergamot- cedarwood-clary sage- clove- cypress- eucalyptus- frankincense- geranium- jasmine- juniper- lavender- lemon- mandarin- marjoram- neroli- orange- patchouli- rose- rosemary- sandalwood- ylang ylang

About:

This oil has a gentle calming effect so if you are suffering from nerves, mild depressions, anxiety or stress then look no further. Often used in skin products to help control acne and oily skin problems.

I Recommend:
Petitgrain Essential from Plant Therapy
Petitgrain Essential Oil from Mountain Rose

Pine

Fragrance: Strong and balsamic smells a bit like turpentine
Note: Middle
Blends Well With: Bergamot- cedarwood- clary sage- cypress- eucalyptus- frankincense- grapefruit- juniper- lavender- lemon- marjoram- niaouli- peppermint- rosemary- sage- sandalwood- tea tree

About:

Apart from its warm woody fragrance that smells wonderful when added to a bath, this oil has great detoxification properties that can boost circulation helping to break down and reduce cellulite. And is excellent for treating colds, sore throats, chest infections, cystitis, urinal infections, and excessive perspiration (try adding to washing detergent or blending in some homemade soap to combat the latter).

I Recommend:
Pine Essential from Plant Therapy

Photo of author

Hi I'm Angela

I make most of the homemade things here. I'm an experienced soap maker, skincare formulator, author, busy Mom of 3, and recently a Grandma! Welcome to SavvyHomemade, it's my true passion.

Subscribe & Download 5 Free eBooks

Soap Made Easy, Three Steps To Perfect Skin, & The Natural Oils Series.

Free Soap Making eBook
Free DIY Skincare eBook
essential oil use chart
comprehensive essential oil guide
carrier oils their uses ebook

Discussion (14 Comments)

  1. Hi Angela, I love your site, great information! I was wondering if you have a good recipe for those of us who suffer from migraine? I noticed that chamomile, peppermint and lavender are recommended, but they are all middle notes and I’m not sure what I should mix them with to get the best result. I’d appreciate if you could post a good recipe as I am very much a beginner 😉 Thank you so very much!

    Reply
    • Hi Helen,

      It’s great to see you experimenting with aromatherapy! Those choices sound wonderful, but I agree you really need a base note. In fact, if you want a well rounded fragrance, I’d also add a top note as well. But that’s just me.

      For your base note, I would recommend Vanilla Absolute. It’s has a rich, smooth fragrance that goes well in just about any blend. My friend uses it in her PMS aromatherapy blends and she swears by it. It’s excellent for bringing down inflammation, but also to reduce high blood pressure (which can be a cause of some people’s awful headaches). Whatever you do, don’t buy a vanilla fragrance oil, it must be the real thing for aromatherapy to really work.

      For a top note, consider something citrus. It’s uplifting and helps fight off those blues we get when we’re not feeling so great. Blood Orange would be a wonderful choice, as it’s completely non-phototoxic. But you don’t have to, the addition of a base note will probably round everything out quite well.

      Hope this helps!

      Reply
  2. I appreciate the information and the time that you have put into this site. It is quite helpful to me. I intend to order any needed product from your provided links to help support your efforts. That said, I do have a question. I do realize that there is no “one recipe suits all” and that, in many cases, there is more than one to achieve the same goal for the same person. However, is there a possibility of causing harm to a person by mixing “not so agreeable” oils?

    Reply
    • Hi Candace, thanks for your kind words and support! 😀

      This is a really interesting question, and something definitely worth discussion. From my research and experience, I’m going to give you a short answer of no, it’s not possible to combine two essential oils that will ultimately harm someone. However, this is only the case if we’re using essential oils properly and taking the normal precautions.

      First, it’s important to remember why only a small percentage of our final product can be essential oils. This is because essential oils are powerful botanical extracts. More specifically, it’s because essential oils contain substances that are known ‘sensitizers’, meaning if too much is used it’s possible for our skin to become hyper sensitive to these substances over time, which can lead to an unpleasant allergic reaction.

      Now, how does this relate to your question? Well, essential oils share some of the same sensitizers. So, it’s possible to combine two essential oils that have a high concentration of a single sensitizer. Providing you’re keeping the concentration of essentials oils in your recipes to below 1-2%, you probably won’t have any issues. However, if someone does have very sensitive skin, it could cause a tingling sensation on the skin or a mild reaction.

      Furthermore, it is possible to unknowingly use two essential oils that are counter productive to each other. For instance, lemon and rose essential oils have opposite properties. Lemon is great for oily and complex skin, whereas rose is great dry and mature skin types. If you use these together, it’s likely they will cancel each other out. While this isn’t dangerous or harmful, it is a complete waste of your time and money, and definitely something worth considering when selecting lovely essential oils for your lovely recipes.

      I hope this has answered all of your questions. Let me know if you need me to clarify anything. <3

      Reply
  3. Angela,
    Thank you for the information you have provided here. I found your site when looking for oils to combine with Frankincense and boy was I happy to land here. Anyway, I have a question. In the descriptions of each oil, you have “Note” listed. Could you explain to me what “Note” means in reference to the oils?

    Reply
  4. Hi, again, I just got eNotified due to your other commenters, and my above comment is past history by now, even though i’m still predisposed to those symptoms and way more, due to my life situation.

    FYI, i also have severe varicose veins plus severe neuropathy, tarsal tunnel, plantar fascitis, tendinitis, tailors bunions, and spinal osteoarthritis. I’ve tried many permutations of oils, including cypress, lemon, rosemary, marjoram, witch hazel, as well as a raved-about ointment on amazon which appeared greenish-herbal and smelled citrusy.

    Despite their rave reviews online, none of those oils really helped, and in fact, some made me feel more constricted.

    What does offer a bit of relief, is indeed eucalyptus or eucalyptus/ginger, as well as =red= tiger-balm (the American one, =not= the high-camphor ebay product), as well as the combo of grapefruit, geranium and lavender oils, approx. 2-drops each (in a 2 oz. glass jar) – swirled into a bit of carrier oil. While sitting with legs immersed in a hot tub, i dip my fingers into EITHER the tigerBalm, OR into aforesaid oil-combo, and lightly massage it into my painful areas, especially my right foot/leg/knee/etc.

    For my back, I use a cheap-junk lotion applicator (omitting the fabric covers:
    https://www.dhgate.com/product/2-pink-blue-back-rubs-massager-bath-brush/552303888.html
    It’s also on aliexpress and amazon.
    Unfortunately, i found this junky applicator way more usable and effective than a high-end “recommended” one which looks sorta like a white-rubber spatula. The pink-plastic is already starting to break and loosen. Why on earth couldn’t they make the same contraption in a non-junky construct, and with no removable parts/or/fabric? Par for the course these days.

    Reply
  5. Have not found so much information anywhere else with the minutest details and pictorial. Million thanks for helping beginners like me. Appreciate your good work.
    Looking forward for more

    Reply
  6. Hi, by the time you might respond to my email, it will be too late, but for the record, i’ve been spending a very very very very long time, trying to find a consistent bath-recipe for severe calf-pain (other people probably call it leg cramps, or permanent leg-charley-horse).

    Confusingly, I’ve seen various combo’s advised:
    (1) lavender, majoram, eucalpt, rosemary, pepermnt
    (2) ginger/or/clary, lavender, majoram, clove
    (3) ginger, eucalypt, majoram

    It happened as a result of walking tensely & gingerly, for quite awhile, in freezing weather, on a horrible icy-sidewalk near an ill-kept road w/wild drivers. Due to a stupid family invitation i couldn’t weasel out of (since her husband, my nephew, had recently died of cancer). I hadn’t arrived yet, when I developed stomach cramps too, and no bathroom nearby. When i arrived, it was a madhouse (nowhere to relax or sit, basically a nightmare).

    I also have severely painful pin-prick chilblains all over the uppermost joint of my pointer-finger, including the underpart. I tried everything,
    after priming with alcohol or peroxide or NaphthaSoap:
    one or more of these:
    wound-honey, bacitracin, calendula, aloe, silvadene, jojoba-oil, pure-lanolin, Aveeno-Anti-Itch, Blue-Star-ointmt

    The doctor told me to just (before bedtime only) put:
    bacitracin+loose-breathy-gauze
    I’m skeptical because it kills without covering it.

    P.S. i’m a senior fyi.

    Reply
    • Hi there,

      Yeah, it can be confusing with conflicting information. The truth is that many of these combinations can actually work quite well. It really depends on you and how you respond to different essential oils. I personally would try either 1 or 3, as I know anything with eucalyptus tends to be quite good for pain. Be sure to follow IFRA guidelines for individual essential oils to ensure you’re not overloading your skin with too many sensitisers.

      Ultimately, I would follow the advice of your doctor. While I know lots of people have extensive experience with using essential oils in home remedies for pain, I personally don’t. My experience is mostly related to using essential oils in cosmetics. So I’m ever so sorry I can’t give you any further advice. Let me know how you get on and how your pain responds to different essential oils. I think it would be a great learning experience, for both you but also myself and other SavvyHomemade readers.

      I’m so sorry you have to deal with this. Pain can be so debilitating, and I hope you find something to help ease it soon.

      Reply
    • Hi ND,

      Yeah, starting something new can be frustrating sometimes, but if you stick with it there’s no reason you can’t master it! Good luck, and thank you for your kind words.

      Reply

Join the conversation