Some studies have shown that essential oils may help with boosting your mood, improving your sleep quality, and reducing anxiety. So let’s focus on the do’s and don’ts of aromatherapy to help you get out of the wintery grumps with the help of essential oils!

As we face the change of seasons and we see days get colder and shorter, some of us are hit by the so called "winter blues". You might notice feeling less motivated to complete tasks, or to be socially active. Suddenly it's more difficult to get out of bed and out in the cold, and all you want to do is spend your time sipping on a cup of hot cocoa, reading a book in the comfort of your home.

This is due to the lack of sunlight that as a consequence reduces the levels of serotonin (happy hormone) in our bodies and boosts melatonin (sleep hormone) levels, hence the sleepiness and lack of motivation. Apart from trying to stay active, having a healthy routine and considering light therapy, something that could help you boost your mood is aromatherapy.

Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils as a "healing" treatment. You can inhale the oils through a diffuser that mixes the oil with water and then disperses the particles in the air. You can also apply some oils directly onto your skin when mixed with a carrier oil (such as olive oil, jojoba oil, coconut oil,…) but beware, because you might be allergic to some oils!

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Don't use concentrated essential oils on your skin to avoid any allergic reaction or irritation! If you want to apply it directly onto your skin, do the necessary research beforehand or talk to a specialist about it!

If you’re completely new to this, do use lavender oil, as it is one of the most frequently used oils for its calming and balancing properties. It's a must have when it comes to essential oils, as it is very versatile to use! You can add 3-5 drops to a diffuser, add some drops to your bath in the evening, or mix it with water to spray on your pillow before sleeping! A great deep sleep is guaranteed after that!

Don't expose your oil to sunlight as it reduces the therapeutic value. If you mix oils yourself, store them in a dark bottle and away from sunlight.

Do use citrus oils to lift your spirits! Lemon, orange, mandarin,… the crispness of citrus oils helps you get out of a bad mood, and that zesty smell also you a boost of positivity! Best to use if you want to be productive! Add 4-6 into your diffuser and up your happy brain function!

Don't ingest essential oil. Oils that are specific to food-use can be used for taste enhancing-purposes, but therapeutic essential oils cannot.

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Do use ylang ylang oil for it's floral aroma, as well as natural calming effect. You don't need much of it, as it's a very potent smell and might cause a headache if used in large portions. Only a drop or two in your diffuser will suffice! Fun fact: Ylang ylang cal also act as a potent aphrodisiac, and is also one of the top notes of the famous Chanel No 5 fragrance!

Don't let essential oils get to your mucus membranes: always wash your hands after using essential oils and don't let it get into your eyes as it can be very irritating!

Do use eucalyptus oil, especially during colder seasons! It helps with a stuffed nose, and helps you breathe easier. Adding a few drops to your bath can work wonders if you suffer from congestion.
It can also be used to stimulate your brain if you feel tired, so next time you catch yourself sleepy in the afternoon, try out some drops of eucalyptus oil in your diffuser!

Also, don't put essential oil close to a flame, as they are very flammable and it can be dangerous to do so!