I’ve always dabbled in essential oils but didn’t really get interested in them until I attended massage school. At our school each day, the rooms were filled with the intoxicating fragrance of lavender. By the time we graduated, most people would never seek out the lavender smell again, but I love it. And it seems to do exactly what it’s supposed to.
Lavender, as an essential oil used on a personal level is most likely is used for relaxation, sleep, or to calm. Upon researching, I came across a paper by Pubmed that shows promise that it can also be used in other forms for pain management, anticonvulsant, tremor reduction, and as an antidepressant and antianxiety ‘medicine’. More studies have to be done regarding the use of lavender when dealing with these conditions, but the results of some studies are promising. In fact, during medieval times, doctors used it to help treat epilepsy and migraines, so it’s historically promising as well.
What does it do, if anything, to enhance your message? Pubmed published a study that says lavender, when used topically, does show up in your plasma. This means that it does penetrate your skin. The massage, it can help you relax. It can help lessen the anxiety of getting your message, and can even promote sleep. If I run lavender in my office, I definitely feel calmer and if it’s around 3pm in the afternoon, I can find myself starting to get drowsy.
Personally, I’ve used lavender at home as aromatherapy, in homemade soaps for bathing and during my own massages, I have inhaled it before my massage starts. What’s really cool is you can buy a plant at your local nursery and plant in your yard. Lavender is hearty and grows more beautiful and more fragrant each year. I have one growing near my front door so when I walk by, I rub a few pieces in my hands and inhale deeply. It’s a cool thing to have at your fingertips.
When looking for essential oils: do your research. Find a company that’s reputable. I always purchase human or food-grade and certified organic (and I personally recommend Simplyearth.com since they also donate a portion of their profits to eliminate human trafficking). Most sites will have someone to consult with and answer your questions. Ask for it at your next massage!