WAYS TO USE OILS IN A MASSAGE BLEND

Ideal for: aching joints, digestive problems, period pain You can take yourself for an indulgent treatment with an aromatherapy-trained massage therapist but, equally, you could self-massage – for example, massaging your abdomen to ease period pain or your temples to soothe a headache – or ask your partner to massage you. If using your own blend, add two tablespoons of a base oil to a saucer (jojoba, avocado and wheatgerm oil are great for dry winter skin), then add four to six drops of your chosen essential oils. Generally, you shouldn’t apply oils directly to your skin without diluting them in a base oil. + TRY: Adding cinnamon essential oil to a base oil and massaging into your abdomen to ease bloating. + Espa Restorative Body Oil, £34 forlOOml; espaskincare.com.

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IN AN INHALATION

Ideal for: clearing congestion ‘In dry inhalation, all you need to do is to breathe in a tew drops placed on a tissue to quickly benefit,’ says Pacchioni. ‘Or you could try a humid inhalation – add one to two drops to a bowl of simmering water. Lean over the bowl with a towel over your head and inhale tor 10 minutes.’ + TRY: Adding a couple of drops of eucalyptus or thyme oil to a humid inhalation. + BUY: Puressential Respiratory Steam Inhalation, £8.99 tor 50ml; amazon.co.uk. Ideal fo r: meditatio n, relaxatio n Diffusing oils – either in an old-school oil burner or an electric diffuser – disperses tiny molecules of the oil into the air in a tine mist. It can still your mind and create the perfect atmosphere tor meditation or yoga. + Adding traditional mystical oils such as mugwort, sandalwood or frankincense to a burner when you’re meditating. + BUY: Neal’s Yard Remedies Meditation Aromatherapy Blend, £17.50 tor 10ml; nealsyardremedies.com. Ideal for: soothing stress and anxiety jl.

ORALLY

Oral lavender oil has been shown to be as effective as conventional medications in soothing anxiety. ‘Essential oils do not dissolve in water, so blend them with a little bit of honey, plant oil or place them on a neutral tablet or a piece of sugar,’ says Pacchioni. Only ingest essential oils that state they are sate to be taken internally and don’t exceed the dose unless guided otherwise by a qualified aromatherapy practitioner. + Adding a drop of food-grade lavender oil to a teaspoon of honey. + BUY: Kalms Lavender Oil Capsules, £6.49 for 14; boots.com. Ideal for: melting away tension or reviving you before a night out Warm water relaxes your muscles and also opens pores, allowing the oils’ properties to penetrate quickly. Use one tablespoon of a light base oil, such as sunflower, and add four to six drops of your chosen essential oil or oils – even though the water will dilute the oils, you still need to add them to a base so they disperse properly Swirl the blend in onoe you’ve finished running the bath as they evaporate quickly in the heat. + Adding four to six drops of uplifting mandarin or lime essential oil to a gloss of m k or o nos de ry e :ornative – then swirl into your bath water once it’s run. + Elemis Life Elixirs Clarity Bath and Shower Oil, £55 for 100ml; elemis.com and department stores. Safety first! Check ” with your doctor or I midwife before using oils when pregnant. If you’re using topically, even when diluted, carry out a patch 62 Health & Fitness // coachmag.co.uk

AS A MIST OR SPRAY_

Ideal for: defoxmgyour home, preparing for sleep Room sprays and mists work in a similar way to diffusion, releasing tiny molecules into the air. They’re great for cleansing stuffy rooms and blitzing mould – many oils have anti-fungal, antiseptic properties. Misting oils onto your pillow is also a perfect way to unwind before bed. TRY: To make a room spray, combine 20 to 30 drops of essential oils with two tablespoons each of mineral water and vodka, and transfer the solution to a sterilised atomizer bottle. Citrus oils are especially refreshing in a spring clean, or reach for soothing aromatic oils such as lavender and sandalwood for relaxing in your bedroom. BUY: Mauli Sleep Dharma Pillow Mist, £22 for 50ml; maulirituals.com. Frankincense. Isabelle Pacchioni shares the.

AS SKINCARE

Ideal for: treating skin conditions, moisturising, youth boosting The perfect option for anyone who wants more natural skincare. Oils always need to be used very carefully on the skin, though. ‘True lavender and tea tree oils can be applied pure onto small areas of skin,’ says Pacchioni. ‘But even with these, if the surfaces to be treated are large or you’re going to use the oils for more than a few days in a row, it’s better to dilute them in a base oil such as macadamia or jojoba. All other oils should be diluted.

And don’t worry – it doesn’t reduce their effectiveness.’ You can also add your favourite essential oils to plain creams and balms. + TRY: Adding a blend of frankincense and neroli to an oil or ointment for a skin-smoothing, fragrant body lotion. BUY: Neal’s Yard Remedies Frankincense Nourishing Cream, £30 for 50g, nealsyardremedies.com and johnlewis.com.

OF BEST DIFFUSERS

Tisserand Aromatherapy Aroma Spa Diffuser, £29.95; tisserand.com Ultrasonic technology and chromatherapy combine to give a fine, silent mist of fragrance and soft coloured lights to suit your mood. Neom Organics Wellbeing Pod, £90; neomorganics.com At the touch of a button, this delivers the perfect amount of scent to help you work, rest or play. Humidifies air and includes a night light. Sanatio Naturalis Ultrasonic Aroma-diffuser, £75; sanationaturalis.com This porcelain diffuser creates a soft mist via ultrasonic vibrations. Boosts humidity to moisturise skin. oils everyone should have in their bathroom cabinet. Eucalpytus is anti-infectious, expectorant, anti-inflammatory and a respiratory decongestant, so it’s ideal against colds, coughs and allergies.

It’s also very refreshing to diffuse. Lavender is really versatile – tranquilising, soothing and balancing for the mind, it induces sleep and also repairs and soothes the skin. Peppermint is analgesic, decongestant, relieves headaches, migraines and neck tension, plus it’s also great for digestion. Tea tree is anti-bacterial and antiseptic. It can be used neat on the skin for acne and fungal infections, plus it soothes sunburn. Wintergreen is excellent if you play sport or train, because it’s amazing for muscle recovery and for preventing aches and inflammation.

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