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My Top 4 Essential Oils

by Marge Maghoney

I like the stuff I put on my body like the food I put in it -- smells divine and has a purpose. Sure, we can use products that are plain and unscented, but where's the fun in that?

And if we need to fix something specific, we need a remedy purposely made to solve that problem. If you're sleepy, you drink coffee. If you need muscle, you eat lots of protein. If you're breastfeeding, you choose foods rich in iron. You get the idea.

Things you put on your body works pretty much the same way. And we can customize our "vitamins" with the type of essential oils (EO) used in our choice of soap, shampoo, lotion and other products we use to take care of ourselves.

Below are my favorites:

1. Lavender

I was not always a fan especially when I was younger. My first impression of lavender was that it smelled like old people. For some products that use cheap lavender EO or worse, an artificial lavender scent, it could still ring true. But if you get to smell real quality lavender EO, it is quite the opposite. It's far from old. It's fresh, clean and just straight up relaxing. I personally carry a tiny pouch of dried lavender flowers laced with good lavender essential oils in my bag and sniff the heck out of it when I'm in the middle of some crazy traffic or whenever I need to calm my mind and need to take it to a happy place. You'd be amazed at how instantly it takes you there. Right after a shower, I also love to massage some lavender butter on my feet before I go to bed. Not only do my heels feel soft when I wake up, but the beautiful scent is still there. 

2. Vanilla

We think of vanilla and we think plain and boring. It is not my personal flavor of choice with cake and ice cream but an absolute yes in pampering. Its rich, warm and sweet aroma brings me comfort than any other EO. It's like coming home and smelling something good baking in the kitchen, only to realize it's you. I first fell in love with vanilla when I first got a whiff of Bath and Body Works' Warm Vanilla Sugar. It was like vanilla plus a dozen plush pillows. I couldn't get enough of it. I love layering my vanilla cream with an apple blossom and lavender spray. Mmm-mmm good.

3. Peppermint/Spearmint

There's a fine line between the two, spearmint having a slightly sweeter take on mint while the other with a more menthol element. It lifts you up and has a very soothing effect. My first choice in pampering my feet. When my feet are super tired, I love treating them to a simple but oh-so-worth-it foot spa. I don't even have to leave the house and only need about half an hour and it makes a freaking difference. First, I soak my feet in a peppermint foot soak diluted in some lukewarm water. I have a HoMedics Bubble Bliss that I once listed on my Valentine's wish list and that bad boy has served me well since. After about 10-15 minutes, I wipe my feet off then gently scrub them with a peppermint foot scrub that also has honey and olive. I scrub each toe, missing not a square inch. The scent keeps me in that spa zone and the honey and olive work their magic as they're easily absorbed after the 10-minute soak. When I'm done, I rinse it off. No need for soap but you may do so if you like. I could actually stop here since at this point, my feet already feel so relaxed and so soft but I take it a step further and seal the deal with a peppermint foot cream. You can't beat that. I'm in the comfort of being at home, in a peaceful and private space not beside any strangers, didn't have to drive nowhere and shell out mooh-lah I could spend on something else.

4. Lemon

Turning out to be my summer favorite. There's just something about lemon and warm weather. It's just a perfect match. Not only do I love to drink it, I love using it on my face and body. There's an energizing quality about it that makes me feel recharged and ready to tackle projects and make things. It's fresh and fruity and also great for acne (that rhymed on purpose). Even if you don't have any, it's a great help preventing it. I thoroughly enjoy washing my face with lemon soap and simply using the Dream Cream right after.