Best Essential Oils For…

Best 5 Essential Oils For Anxiety and Stress

Best Essential Oils For Anxiety & Stress

Let’s face it we have all been stressed and anxious at one point in our life.  Different problems will make us stressed out or anxious. In this article, I am going to show you some essential oils that can alleviate your anxiety and stress levels.  Different essential oils will react differently with different people.  It’s important to test them out and see what works for you.

Down below are 10 essential oils that help combat stress and anxiety.


Lavender has been used for a long time to help alleviate stress and anxiety. It’s no surprise that this essential oil is used at so many spas.  It’s a very relaxing essential oil.  It’s been used to help people fall asleep for years, treat pain, etc.

The main way this works is by affecting the limbic system.  This is the part of the brain that actually controls your emotions.   Lavender contains linalool which does have some sedative effects.  This will help relax your muscles, lower cortisol in your blood, and lower your blood pressure.

One study shows that patients that were suffering from anxiety disorders showed an improvement of restlessness, disturbed sleep, and had an increased quality of life when lavender was given orally.

Topically. To use it for topically, all you do is mix a few drops with a carrier oil.  I recommend creating a roll-on this and rubbing into your skin for about 1-2 minutes.

Inhalation/Diffuser. For inhalation, you can inhale it right from the vial. If you want to use a diffuser, all you have to do is put a few drops in and let it run.

Hot Bath. Run a hot bath and put a few drops right in the water.

Ylang Ylang

Ylang ylang has a floral smell and has been used in aromatherapy for many years. It’s great for helping people relax and ease anxiety. In addition, it can help lower things like blood pressure, which can help decrease your anxiety levels. Ylang lang lowers your stress responses and your cortisol which leaves you feeling much more relaxed.

Ylang ylang is a mild sedative.  Those that are having feelings of anger, anxiety, and nervousness can experience the relaxing effects of this powerful essential oil.  It’s commonly used along with meditation because it calms your mind and allows you to relax. Here is proof that it reduced stress levels and allowed people to feel more relaxed when being applied topically.

Topically. You can add a few drops to a carrier oil (3% – 5% dilution) and massage it right into your skin.

Diffuser. You can either put a few drops of just ylang ylang in a diffuser and let it run or you can mix it with some lavender and bergamot. Either way, it will help you relax and ease your anxiety.

Inhalation. You can inhale the essential oil right from the vial or from an inhaler to help get some quick stress relief.


Sandalwood is one of the more expensive essential oils.  With anxiety and depression, you could have trouble focusing and experience mental fog. Sandalwood is great for helping with these things and it also works with the limbic system. This system is what helps stabilize your moods and keeps everything in balance.

Sandalwood is a mild sedative and can even be used to help you get a good nights sleep.  It contains satasnols which are compounds which give it it’s sedative properties.  Sandalwood has been burned in Hindu, Buddhist, and Ancient Egyptian ceremonies because it reduces restlessness and provides inner peace.

Inhalation. You can inhale the oil right from the vial or use an inhaler.

Diffuser.  You can add 3-4 drops of sandalwood into your diffuser which will help you unwind when your mind is racing.

Topically. Rub the sandalwood oil into your wrists and ankles when you’re feeling stressed.

Massage. For a massage, you can make a mixture of 6 drops of sandalwood oil, 2 drops of rose oil and 4 teaspoons of carrier oil (recommend sweet almond with sandalwood).


Vetiver is an earthy essential oil that is very dense. It’s a grounding, calming, and stabilizing essential oil. People that are nervous and jittery and have frequent panic attacks will find vetiver to be a lifesaver. Along with helping with stress and anxiety it has been used to alleviate insomnia, depression, trauma, and even hysteria.

It’s a base note essential oil. Which means it has a low evaporation cycle. Meaning, the smell from vetiver sticks around for a couple of days. It has been studied extensively and has been proven to lower anxiety.

Diffuse. You can add 2 drops of vetiver and with 6 drops of lavender in your diffuser to help calm you down.

Inhale. Inhale vetiver right out of the bottle or use an inhaler to inhale throughout the day.

Topically. You can make a roll-on, lotion, or make a shampoo and apply it topically 3 times a day.


Orange essential oil is another one of those oils that smells like the real thing and can start working immediately. The way it works is by working with your brain to help stabilize your emotions and get you in a better mood. It’s a citrus oil that leaves us feeling happy, relaxed, and has been used as a mood lifter for years. A lot of people have used orange essential oil to relieve their depression symptoms.

Studies have been conducted on orange essential oil and it’s shown to reduce your pulse rate and salivary cortisol. Cortisol is released when our body is in a state of panic.

As an added plus orange essential oil is one of the cheaper essential oils that you can purchase.

Diffuser. You can put a few drops in a diffuser and let it run for a few hours.

Inhalation. You can inhale the oil right from the bottle to help you get almost instant effects.

Massage. To use it for massage, make a mixture of 6 drops of orange oil, 2 drops of lavender oil and 4 teaspoons of carrier oil.

How Should You Use Essential For Stress & Anxiety

There are three ways which are commonly used to help alleviate your stress and anxiety. Below I will discuss them.


First, let me start off with a little science on why inhaling different scents calms our body down. We process so much information through our sense of smell. It’s an area which is adjacent to our brain which is the limbic region.  It is responsible for processing our memory and emotional well-being. Simply put, when we inhale essential oil molecules it comes in through our nasal cavities. This then fires a mental response in our limbic system. This will then stimulate our brain which will help control our heart rate, blood pressure production of hormones, and breathing patterns. Different scents will allow our body to relax. Essential oils can help relieve our anxiety and stress levels.

One common way that people use essential oils is to diffuse them in a diffuser. You can do this by adding 7-10 drops to your diffuser. Personally, I have used essential oils in my URPOWER 500 ml & InnoGear 150 ml diffuser. Additionally, you can use a heated tea light diffuser, too. It’s very common for people to take a hot bath and put in 10 drops of essential oil, too.

Lastly, you can use an inhaler ( I recommend Plant Therapy’s inhalers). You can carry this with you an breathe it in (for 1-2 minutes) whenever you want throughout the day.


You can apply essential oils topically. This isn’t as simple as just putting a couple drops of essential oil on your body and rubbing it into your skin. Instead, you want to use a carrier oil to dilute the essential oil. It’s recommended that you use anywhere from 3% to 5% dilution. Some of the carrier oils that I recommend you use are jojoba, sweet almond, avocado, and my favorite coconut oil.

Essential oils that are applied topically get absorbed by the body quickly. You can apply these topically on the rims of your ears, behind your ears, temples, at the base of your skull (on the back), your neck, and even the bottoms of your feet.


There is a lot of debate on ingesting essential oils orally. The reason being is because the essential oils need to be pure if you want to ingest them. For instance, Radha Beauty and Green Health are examples of essential oils that are synthetic. They have been adulterated with chemicals.

Again, if you are going to take essential oils internally make sure they are pure. Don’t overdo it and only do it once a day. Some good brands that I recommend that sell pure essential oils are Plant Therapy, Aura Cacia, and Young Living.

To take essential oils orally you want to put a drop or two with raw organic honey. Additionally, you can put them in a capsule and swallow the capsule. Always make sure you drink an 8 oz glass of water after ingesting the essential oil, though. Many people think you can add essential oils to your water and drink them. However, this isn’t accurate because water and essential oils actually separate from each other. Meaning essential oils are not water soluble.

27 thoughts on “Best 5 Essential Oils For Anxiety and Stress

  1. One of my children suffers from anxiety, and another has problems sleeping. I never thought about using essential oils, and I’m so happy I found your website in my search to help them. I can’t thank you enough, and I’m going to order some for them right away.

    Should I play it safe with the kids meaning use a lower dilution? Can you explain?

    1. Hey Babsie,

      Glad you found I have written lots about essential oils and like to educate people on them properly. I think a lot of people don’t realize just how much there is to learn about essential oils.

      You should certainly play essential oils safe with kids. Luckily, Plant Therapy has a brand called “Kid Safe”. The essential oils are approved to be safe with children.

      As far as diluting essential oils and using them topically I would recommend 1% if the kids are below 5 years old. You could try 2% if they are older than 5 years old.

  2. I heard a lot about the benefits of essentials oils but I did not know exactly how they help to relieve stress and anxiety. I know about Lavender and orange oil. I was not surprised Ylang ylang is included in your list. It is an aromatic flower in my country. I think I need these essentials to relieve my stress from my job;) My wife is suffering from sleepless nights that she always complains to me. Can you recommend which is the best to induce sleep?

    1. Hey Dan,

      There are an absolute ton of essential oils. Different people respond to them differently. But, for me, ylang ylang has worked wonders when my mind is stressed and I can’t stop obsessing about the same thing.

      As far as inducing sleep lavender and Roman chamomile seem to be the top two essential oils. Roman chamomile is also a floral essential oil and I have found that them two mix quite nicely. Also, there have been studies conducted and it looks like people that were in the clinical trial responded positively to those two, as far as sleep is concerned.

  3. Let me first say that I absolutely love using essential oils at home. I have found them to be pleasant and I love the fresh, inviting, lingering scents. With that said, I was excited to read this article. I use lavender oil a lot, but, I had no idea it too could aid in lowering my blood pressure. I just assumed it was only due to my lifestyle changes. I appreciate this information, which really makes a lot of sense when you think about it. Since it relaxes me and makes me sleep, then this alone will help in lowering my blood pressure. A million thanks for this information. Do you know if there are essential oils that could help diabetics?

  4. I seem to hold on to stress and I think a lot of people do. However, how do you find that benzos or anxiety drugs aid in alleviating anxiety and stress?

    1. Hey JB,

      A lot of people are looking for the “quick fix” to relieve their anxiety. What is sad is doctors prescribe benzodiazepines for anxiety to quickly. Literally, all you have to do is go into a doctors office and tell them you’re having anxiety issues and they will write you a prescription within minutes. Benzodiazepines are the most prescribed medication in the United States. There are actually over 2,000 benzodiazepines but only 15 of them are approved by the FDA.

      While I’m not a doctor and I’m certainly not giving you medical advice I can tell you that these drugs only temporary mask stress and anxiety. These drugs will sedate you, come with a long list of side effects, and can even lead to abuse.

  5. Wow, I did not know a few of the oils you mentioned. But I will be looking into it. I just love my essential oils. I believe when I’m done with this comment, I’m going to light some.
    Informative article and thank you. We all need help with stress and anxiety.
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge,

    1. Hey Laura,

      Essential oils are truly amazing! There are so many other uses for them other than just diffusing them, though. I use them in a lot of different products that I make.

  6. Hi, I have never heard of vetiver before; what plant, tree, whatever .. Does it come from? I’ve always wanted to try a diffuser but just haven’t yet. I do seem to suffer from too much agitation so thinking a relaxing essential oil and a diffuser could be a good purchase for me. Thank you for the info!

    1. Hey Lynne,

      Vetiver essential oil is extracted from the roots. It contains over 100 components. It’s one of those essential oils that has a long shelf life, too.

      But you should really try using some of the essential oils mentioned in this article to help you relax. They can change your life for the better.

  7. Thanks, I have been pretty stressed lately and will be trying some of these essential oils out.

    Can you use essential oils for acne, too?

  8. Okay, you have given me a great list. Due to health issues, I am experiencing right now, I have been somewhat stressed and anxious. I would love to relax a bit and try to not worry as I can’t change it, that is for sure. Which one would you say is the best option? I will be using it in a diffuser.

    1. Hey Matts Mom,
      Everyone is going to respond differently to different essential oils. From my personal experience I can say that ylang ylang and vetiver are my top choices. Ylang ylang just seems to relax my mind when something is really bothering me. Vetiver is just such a grounding essential oil that relaxes me big time. I feel much more relaxed when I smell vetiver and it does wonders for my sleep issues, too.

  9. I love my diffuser running as I work, and it just provides a great smell all through my house! I typically use lavender, orange and peppermint. Thanks for the info on vetiver, I’ve been hearing a lot about it lately and plan to try it.

    1. Hey Andrea,

      Lavender, and orange are very good essential oils to use. They help with stress and anxiety. But, are also useful for sleep issues, too. But, peppermint is one of my favorites to use throughout the day. It’s has a stimulating effect on the body and can be used for so many different things. I have actually written about peppermint (which you can check out here). Also, one other essential oil you might want to try is rosemary. It’s a great essential oil to mix with peppermint. You can read about the health benefits of rosemary, which I have already written about.

      Certainly, try vetiver. It’s one of my favorite essential oils, too. Such a grounding essential oil!

  10. I really like the advice you have on here. I tried getting into essential oils a while back and found a lot of advice to be a bit dangerous. But your post seems well advised of the potency of essential oils and full of safe practices.

    1. Hey Nicole,

      There is loads of information on essential oils online. However, a lot of it is false or very misleading. Essential oils aren’t the “cure all” but they can really help with problems you have been having with stress and anxiety and other problems.

  11. I’ve been using essential oils for about a year now, and I am glad that you showed organic ones in your article. I think it is one of those things that people take for granted, but ORGANIC is all I use.  Some of the oils out there have some really undesirable ingredients.

    Vetiver is my favorite one, it has a more masculine scent to it, and it isn’t too powerful.

    1. Hey James,

      Just to clarify the ones I have mentioned are not organic. However, you can purchase organic essential oils. They are available from Plant Therapy and many other brands. However, do expect to pay a little more for organic essential oils.

      Try a mix of vetiver and cedarwood. That’s about as manly as you can get.

  12. We actually always use a combination of Lavender and Orange, these oils are very good for my wife, since she has anxiety and lack of sleep in some nights.

    These 2 combined make sure she can have a good rest, and also me because I’m not so worried anymore since we have it.

    1. Hey Emmanuel,

      Lavender and orange are a fantastic combination for combating stress and anxiety. Also, those two are actually used for sleep issues, too. Hence, the reason why you don’t have any trouble sleeping. Our sleep is very important.

      Think about it when your sleep deprived it affects everything you do. Having a clear mind makes you so much more productive and healthy.

  13. Hi. Great post. I am a massage therapist and can attest to the effects of all the oils you stated. I often find they get into my system because I am massaging them into other people so it has a mutual beneficial effect for me and the client. A few questions…what about the new rage CBD oil? Also, is burning these oils by candle equally as effective? And lastly, if you use them regularly does your body get used it thereby lowering it’s benefits? Thanks for the great info and I look forward to hearing your answers.

    1. Hey Melo Ann,

      I haven’t ever used CBD oil, but it does have a lot of health benefits, too. Some of the best CBD oil benefits are:

      Pain relief.

      But, to answer your question yes burning essential oils is a great way to get the chemicals into the air quickly. For instance, you can use a tea light burner, which I have used for many years now. I have actually written about all the different kinds of diffusers here.

      No using them regularly doesn’t decrease their benefits. You’re body doesn’t get used to them where they will ultimately lose their effectiveness, though.

      Hope this helps and thanks for your awesome questions. Hopefully, I have answered them so you can benefit more from them.

  14. I myself suffer from anxiety on occasion, as well as sleepless nights.  I love using Lavender oil, it is so relaxing and smells great.  I  am fairly new to essential oils, and am glad I found your article, I learned quite a bit.  I have not heard of Vetiver, and the idea of making a shampoo with it is great.  I will have to try that, but first I have to ask what it smells like?  After reading your post, I’m very excited to try some of the essential oils you have mentioned.  Thank you.

    1. Hey Jenny,

      A lot of people suffer from anxiety and I have personally suffered from it in the past. It’s really a big problem which I believe doctors are so quick to prescribe benzodiazepines to quickly for. These benzodiazepines can be very dangerous to your health, though.

      Here is some good information on the benzodiazepines and how they can affect your body:

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