Holistic Medicine

12 healing bath recipes to eliminate back pain, headaches and more

essential oil bath
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essential oil bath

This article is shared with permission from our friends at naturallivingideas.com.

A relaxing bath is the best way to unwind after a hectic day, but what’s even better is enhancing the experience with essential oils hand picked for your mood and needs.

Essential oils are concentrated plant essences that have the power to influence our body and mind. They are a complex mix of highly potent volatile substances, some acting as muscle relaxants or pain relievers while others may be stimulants or mood enhancers.

When used in diffusers or candles, essential oils permeate the air and enter our system mainly through the olfactory channel. While soaking in a bath infused with them, the skin becomes another channel to absorb their goodness, making them even more effective.

I like to add some mineral salts for a detox effect, and calm lighting and background music to create the right atmosphere.

Below, you will find every single essential oil to meet each one of your needs. That’s because each of them is comprised of active ingredients unique to them, as well as several others that are common to many other oils.

1. For Restful Sleep

Insomnia is a common problem in today’s world. Half the adult population in America complains about some type of sleep problem, with about 30% qualifying as insomniacs. The inability to have a long and restful sleep at night results in daytime drowsiness and diminished work efficiency. Depression and bipolar disorder are associated with insomnia as well.

Other health risks of insomnia include high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems. About 10 million people resort to prescription drugs for temporary relief, despite the risk of developing dependency.

A warm bath at bedtime with some soothing essential oils can relax both body and mind and gently induce restful sleep. They may be just as effective as any medication, if not better.


  • Lavender essential oil – 10 drops
  • Roman chamomile essential oil – 5-6 drops
  • Sea salt – a handful
  • Lavender buds – a handful (optional)


  1. Mix essential oils with the sea salt and stir well.
  2. Add the mixture to a hot bath.
  3. Add in the lavender buds.
  4. Relax in the bath for at least 30-40 minutes.  

Lavender oil is analgesic and antidepressant. It removes any aches and pains and general discomfort that stand in the way of complete relaxation and sleep. Roman chamomile eases tension and frustration, calming the mind. It is even effective in calming down hyperactive children. And sea salt reverses fatigue.  

2. For Relieving Anxiety

Being anxious about anything – no matter how big or small – makes us restless, preventing us from focusing on tasks or relaxing. Chronic anxiety can cause spikes in blood pressure, inability to sleep, and even depression. An essential oil bath to relieve anxiety can not only help you relax, it can also improve your focus to tackle the problems at hand.


  • Frankincense – 10 drops
  • Lavender – 5 drops
  • Bergamot – 5 drops
  • Full-fat milk* – 1 cup

*Editor’s note: Use whole, organic milk so you’re not absorbing additional hormones and toxins in your bath.


  1. Mix the essential oils in the milk, stirring well to form a uniform emulsion.
  2. Add it to the hot bath.
  3. Relax in the bath for half hour to one hour.

Frankincense helps ease anxiety and bring on a contemplative or spiritual mood. It is known to reduce mental trauma and depression in patients with terminal diseases and bring down their anxiety. Bergamot has also proven to be effective against anxiety; it is known to reduce the production of the stress hormone cortisol in laboratory rats. Lavender acts as a relaxant and antidepressant.

3. For Reducing Stress

A busy day at work can zap your energy and leave you fatigued physically and mentally. Coming home in this state of mind can lead to problems on the domestic front since you may feel too tired to give attention to those who really count.

If you cannot leave your stress at work where it belongs, drain it in the bath tub, and come out refreshed and ready for some quality family time.


  • Rose essential oil – 10 drops
  • Frankincense essential oil – 10 drops
  • Coconut oil – 2 tablespoons
  • Sea salt – a handful


  1. Mix all the ingredients thoroughly and add to the bath water.
  2. Sit in this invigorating bath for half an hour and it should perk you up for the evening.

The floral aroma of rose is enchanting and uplifting. Frankincense is warm and comforting and can help you overcome work-related anxieties. The anti-inflammatory properties of coconut oil and sea salt would work together to relieve physical fatigue. 

4. For Sore Muscles

As we age, our bodies naturally become weaker and we may experience bouts of sore or aching muscles. But don’t be quick to reach for over-the-counter analgesics when you have these essential oils for sore muscles on hand.


  • Lavender oil – 10 drops
  • Peppermint oil – 5 drops
  • Citrus oil – 5 drops
  • Clove oil – 2 drops

Lavender oil is analgesic and anti-inflammatory; it will soothe both the body and mind. The cooling effect of peppermint oil on the skin is accompanied by an increase in blood circulation that aids tissue repair and regeneration. Clove oil provides a temporary numbness while citrus oil has a rejuvenating effect.

For Headaches

woman headache

There’s nothing like a prolonged headache to make you irritable and incapacitated. The cause of your headache could be anything from seasonal allergies and sinus congestion to a migraine from anxiety and stress. Hormonal fluctuations associated with menstrual cycles and lack of sleep can also precipitate a headache.

Here are a couple of different essential oil elixirs depending on the type of a headache you have. 

5. Sinus Congestion Headache


  • Peppermint oil – 10 drops
  • Eucalyptus oil – 5 drops
  • Sesame seed oil – 1 Tbsp


  1. Mix all the oils together and add them to warm bath water.
  2. Soak in the bath for 30 to 40 minutes to melt away the sinus congestion as well as the headache.

Eucalyptus oil helps clear the airways and the sinuses while peppermint oil provides pain relief. Be careful not to splash water in your eyes. Eucalyptus oil is a very strong essential oil can cause irritation if it ends up in your eye.  

6. Tension Headache/Migraine Due to Lack of Sleep and Hormonal Problems


  • Peppermint oil – 10 drops
  • Chamomile oil – 10 drops
  • Sandalwood oil – 5 drops
  • Baking soda – 2 tablespoons


  1. Mix the essential oils with the baking soda and add to the bath water.
  2. Relax in the bath until the water becomes cold.
  3. It is likely that your headache will be gone by this time.

It helps to dab a bit of peppermint oil on the forehead. The cooling effect of peppermint helps stimulate blood flow to the forehead, giving you the effect of pain relief. It can also stop muscle contractions that cause throbbing pain.

7. For Premenstrual Syndrome

It is not unusual for women to respond differently to the hormonal changes taking place throughout the menstrual cycle, but things often become pretty bad in the week preceding the periods.

Bloating, cravings, irritability and muscle cramps are some of the common symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). In addition, some women may feel sluggish or wake up to a puffy face due to sudden weight gain from water retention.

Using essential oils to regulate hormonal imbalances helps keep PMS under control. 


  • Clary sage oil  – 5 drops
  • Chamomile oil  – 2-3 drops
  • Lavender oil  – 2-3 drops
  • Geranium oil  –  2 drops
  • Epsom salt  – a handful


  1. Mix the oils with the salt and add to the warm bath.
  2. Spend at least 45 minutes in the bath for good results.

Clary sage can regulate estrogen production during the menstrual cycle. It also has the ability to relieve muscle cramps and pain caused by uterine contractions during PMS, periods and labor.

8. For Mental Stimulation

Overworking the brain can result in mental fatigue that translates to disinterest, lack of motivation and the inability to think clearly and productively.

When you have lots of work to do, especially of an intellectual nature, but don’t seem to have the energy and inclination, essential oils can be of help. Some of them can increase the ability to focus while others enhance cognitive function and memory.


  • Rosemary essential oil – 10 drops
  • Basil essential oil – 5 drops
  • Lemon essential oil – 5 drops
  • Olive oil – 2 tablespoons


  1. Mix all the oils together and add to the warm bath.
  2. Relax in the bath, allowing the smell of citrus to waft over you and clear out your mind.

Lemon oil has an invigorating effect on the body and mind. It can increase your mental clarity. The memory-enhancing power of rosemary is well known. The essential oil of basil can sharpen the mind and act as a mental stimulant.

9. For Gaining Control Over Your Emotions

You may occasionally feel restless for no apparent reason and find your mind wandering. Loss of control over emotions, especially failure to control anger, can have undesirable consequences. Whenever you feel the need to have a good grounding or a better control of your emotions, you can turn to essential oils for help.


  • Vetiver essential oil – 10 drops
  • Cedar wood oil – 5 drops
  • Sandalwood oil – 5 drops
  • Jojoba oil – 2 tablespoons


  1. Mix all the oils together.
  2. Add the mixture to a warm bath and soak in it.

Vetiver extracted from the fibrous roots of a grass is known as the oil of tranquility. This cooling oil can calm your mind and relax the body. Oils of sandalwood and cedarwood are extremely grounding and relaxing. They help bring a sense of control over your emotions.

10. For Boosting your immune system

Cold and flu season may find you coming down with a bout of illness, but it is up to your immune system to defend you against these contagious diseases. Taking precautionary measures as soon as you experience the first symptom of a cold or flu may save you a lot of trouble.


  • Lemon eucalyptus oil – 5 drops
  • Lemon essential oil – 5 drops
  • Pine needle oil – 2 drops
  • Tea tree oil – 2 drops
  • Virgin coconut oil – 2 tablespoons


  1. Mix all the essential oils with the coconut oil and add it to a bathtub filled with hot water.
  2. Get in immediately because the hot water can cause the volatile oils to evaporate faster.

Lemon eucalyptus oil extracted from Eucalyptus citriodora has antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial properties. It is particularly effective in preventing respiratory infections. The essential oil of lemon stimulates the immune system by promoting white blood cell production.

Pine needle oil is an insurance against the aches and pains associated with cold and flu while the antimicrobial action of tea tree oil is legendary.

11. For Allergy Relief

Hay fever season can be a nightmare for allergy sufferers. For some bizarre reason, the immune system goes into overdrive, reacting to pollen, dust, and other allergens. Often people with severe allergies and asthma require corticosteroids to control their symptoms, but essential oils may be an effective option.


  • Lavender essential oil – 10 drops
  • Basil essential oil – 5 drops
  • Sesame seed oil  – 1 tablespoon
  • Himalayan salt – a handful


  1. Mix all the oils with the salt and add to the bath.
  2. Stay in the bath for 30 minutes or more to reap all of the great benefits of this healing oil mixture.

Lavender oil contains natural antihistamines, which are used to treat allergies. It can soothe not only respiratory allergies but skin allergies as well. Basil also has a calming effect on the body. The pale pink/grey colored Himalayan salt is full of beneficial minerals that aid detoxification.

12. For Increasing Sex Drive

Essential oils can be helpful when there’s a need to rekindle romance and passion. While some act as an aphrodisiac increasing desire, others help with performance.


  • Ylang ylang oil – 5 drops
  • Cinnamon oil  – 5 drops
  • Sandalwood oil  – 5 drops
  • Jasmine essential oil – 2 drops

Sandalwood with its earthy, woody smell goes well with the strong floral scent of Jasmine to increase desire and sexual attraction. Ylang -ylang increases libido and cinnamon provide physical and mental energy.  

A Note About Essential Oils

Essential oils are powerful tools in your hands, but they should be used with caution and discretion. Always test them for allergic reactions by applying a drop to the skin 12 hours before using them in a bath.

Always use the minimum quantity required for the most effective results. When it comes to essential oils, less is more. Get the purest essential oils you can; they may be expensive, but they are worth every penny.

Where to Buy Essential Oils

All of the essential oils mentioned in this article are available for purchase on Amazon. The most trusted suppliers of essential oils include Plant Therapy and Edens Garden. Visit their respective marketplaces here and here and add all the oils you need to your basket.



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