The Best Essential Oils For Anxiety, Stress And Depression

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The Best Essential Oils For Anxiety And Depression

Scents can have a very powerful effect on our emotions and mood. Essential oils are volatile oils that contain aromatic molecules that are able to cross the blood/brain barrier. Hence their direct effect on the parts of our brain that control stress, anxiety, fear, and depression.

Although severe cases of depression or anxiety cannot be cured through the use of essential oils alone, they can definitely help you on your way to reduce stress and relax body and mind.

Always contact your doctor before you decide to stop your medication and solely rely on aromatherapy to ease your symptoms and negative emotions. You can also refer to my previous article about stress and anxiety, as well as my article about depression for more natural options to treat these issues.

Essential Oils For Anxiety, Stress And Depression

There are many EOs (Essential Oils) available that can help you to ease symptoms of stress, depression, and anxiety. It is important though that you use the ones you like the most. Scents are very personal and they mustn’t upset or stress you even more because they don’t smell right or make you too emotional.

Here’s a list of essential oils and their benefits. Don’t let the list overwhelm you! Try the ones you enjoy most.

BergamotBergamot has a refreshing scent that uplifts the spirit and helps with feelings of pain, anxiety, depression, and sadness.

Basil -Uplifting refreshing scent that works against depression, fatigue, and anxiety.

Clary Sage – Clary sage can help with insomnia, anxiety, and depression.

Frankincense – One of the best essential oils to slow down your breathing which helps to reduce feelings of fear, nervous tension, stress, and anxiety.

Geranium – Works as a natural sedative to lift the spirit and release negative emotions. It works great to ease symptoms of depression and stress.

Jasmine – Jasmine has a relaxing flowery scent that is known for its antispasmodic and uplifting properties.

Lemon – Lemon’s refreshing scent has purifying and uplifting properties. It helps to combat negative emotions, stress, depression and boost your immunity. Read more about the amazing uses of lemon EO here.


Lemon balm. A study published in the Mediterranean Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism found that extracts from lemon balm (Melissa officinalis L.) can also help deal with anxiety. Researchers found that lemon balm can help to improve anxiety disorders and help a person enjoy a better night’s sleep.

Lavender -Lavender is a true cure-for-all. It helps with headaches, migraine, fear, anxiety, depression, nervousness, hypertension, and insomnia. It has a calming and relaxing effect on body and mind. Read more about the uses of lavender EO in my previous article.

Mandarin – Mandarin has antispasmodic properties and works emotionally to uplift the spirit.

Marjoram – Marjoram has been used for ages to ease feelings of fear, loneliness, grief, rejection, and anxiety.

Wild Orange – Just as all the other citrus EOs, orange has a refreshing, energizing, and mood lifting effect. It works great to ease feelings of panic, anger, irritation, and nervousness.


Palmarosa – Palmrosa can help you reduce nervous tension and anxiety.

Rose – Its great fragrance has a stimulating effect on the entire nervous system and helps to create a sense of well-being.

Roman Chamomile -Works calming and relaxing for body and mind. It is often used to treat depression and stress.

Sandalwood – Sandalwood’s comforting scent has sedative properties that can help you to ease tension and fight inner stress. For more information, read my post about the best uses for Sandalwood essential oil.

Ylang-Ylang -Has a relaxing scent that balances male and female energies. Its scent restores confidence and equilibrium and can be used to treat insomnia, anxiety, and depression.

PatchouliPatchouli oil may help to alleviate depression. A hot relaxing bath is a great antidote for a stressful day and adding a few drops of patchouli oil to your bath can help to alleviate depression and to relieve the stress.

How To Use Essential Oils For Anxiety, Stress And Depression


Add a few drops to your diffuser and diffuse throughout the day to uplift your spirit or calm your mind. Diffuse at night in your bedroom to promote a better night’s rest or to ease your thoughts. Or add a few drops to your pillow to inhale while you sleep.


Add 1 to 2 drops of your favorite EO into the palms of your hands and rub them together to spread the oil. Cup them over your nose and take 4-6 deep and slow breaths to reduce feelings of stress, depression, or anxiety.


Add 2 to 4 drops of EO(s) on a cotton ball and secure in a zip lock bag to take with you or take a small bottle of EOs with you to take a sniff whenever you need.


Add 10-12 drops of your favorite EO or EO blend to 2 oz. carrier oil (sweet almond, jojoba, or grapeseed oil are all good examples) for a relaxing and uplifting massage.

Calming EO Rub

Add 5 to 10 drops of EO to 2 tablespoons carrier oil or natural unscented lotion. Rub the mixture onto your neck, chest, bottoms of your feet, wrists, and behind the ears to find relief.

Relaxing Bath

Add 5 to 10 drops of EOs to your bath tub to alleviate feelings of stress, anxiety, or depression. If you have a sensitive skin, dilute the EOs in 1 tablespoon carrier oil of your liking before adding them to your bath tub.

This will give your bath an added moisturizing effect and protect your sensitive skin. Do not add the oils to running water as they will evaporate at a higher rate. Add them after you have run the bath and gently mix them in by hand.

Surround Yourself With The Fragrance Of Healing EOs

  • Add a few drops to your favorite lotion.
  • Add a few drops to a tissue or cotton ball and place in your car.
  • Add 2 drops of your favorite EO on a cloth and put it in the dryer for nice smelling clothes.
  • Add 2 to 3 drops on a cotton ball and put in the vacuum cleaner.

Powerful Essential Oil Blend For Anxiety, Stress And Depression

  • 4 parts ylang-ylang EO
  • 4 parts clary sage EO
  • 2 parts basil EO
  • 3 parts geranium EO
  • 1 part sandalwood EO

Combine these EOs into a small glass bottle, use dark glass to avoid oxidation. Whenever you feel the need, open the bottle to take a sniff or add 1 to 2 drops to the palm of your hands and inhale the vapors. You can also use this blend in your massage oils or add them to your bath tub.

If you are interested to learn more about essential oils you can find useful information in my e-book Magical Aromatherapy. This e-book will help you to discover the power of essential oils and the most effective ways to use them.

14 Effective Natural Remedies for Stress and Anxiety

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21 Responses to The Best Essential Oils For Anxiety, Stress And Depression

  1. Charlie says:

    Nice page! Thank you

  2. Lisa says:

    Just wondering if the essential oils for anxiety and depression can also be put differser the 4 parts ylang-ylang??

  3. Cyndi says:

    Lisa, the wonderful thing about EOs is that, since they’re all natural, you can experiment to find what YOUR senses prefer! Blend away! But I’d suggest to ALWAYS use a carrier oil (fraction ed coconut oil and olive oil are my faves). Reason is some of these oils can irritate the skin, especially if you put 2 stong oils together. I found that out the hard way when I used peppermint and lavender together without a carrier, for a headache. You rub on temples, forehead or wherever the pain is. It tingled my forehead tremendously to say the least! But the headache was gone in about 5 minutes! Since then I have learned to use a carrier oil for every mixture! Good luck and happy blending!

  4. Alissa Pathe says:

    I use lavender oil and olive oil for a foot massage

  5. julie says:

    My son is battling depression and anxiety attacks he is 26 years old he is currently taking Padilla what essential oil would best help him and where might I get it in Minnesota? He is currently taking paxil

    • Jenny says:

      Hi Julie, generally speaking you can buy essential oils (EOs) in some drugstores, health food stores or online (like Amazon). It’s hard to pinpoint a specific EO to suit a person, as there are many EOs available that can help you to ease symptoms of anxiety, and since scents are very personal, it’s important that a person uses the ones he/she likes the most. Many health food stores that stock EOs have also test bottles so a person can try and sniff and see what he/she likes.

    • Trisha says:

      Hi Julie, just coming across this website now, I highly recommend Young Living Oils. They are therapeutic grade oils. Joy is one I like for uplifting. Plus there are many more you can use for anxiety and depression. You can have a look on their website. I have been a member with them for over a year now and order oils mostly to try new ones and absolutely love it. You can start up your own wholesale account yourself, that way you can try different oils in your start kit. I hope this helps. Peace and Calming is great one too but is popular and is on back order.

      • Alicia Schriber says:

        I second that! If you use anything else, you don’t know what you are getting! A manufacturer can slap about any kind of label on there and you could be breathing in toxic chemicals.

  6. Marcy Coning says:

    Love that you wrote this article and highlighted the fact that natural remedies, like using essential oils, can be effective in battling anxiety and depression. Too many people jump straight to pharmaceuticals based solely on advice from their doctors. If they would just do a little research, they might find that they could save money with more natural remedies and also reduce risks that come with putting unknown chemicals into their bodies.

  7. Ekta verma says:

    While using eucalyptus oil in bathing tub and soking foots in hotwater with eucalyptus it gives postive effect on me

  8. Jaleesa says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this!

  9. Robyn cain says:

    Purity is key! DoTerra grown in indigenous country, which adds to its purity. Also by doing so, they aid economy of those countries!

  10. ziva says:

    I would like to buy this online but I want to know some trusted sites can any 1 help me pls

  11. Esmeralda says:

    I get anxious and/or claustrophobic when riding in the back seat of a car; is there an oil I can use to help me. (people aren’t always happy to let me ride in the front and think is all in my head 🙁 )

    • Jenny Hills, Medical Writer and Researcher says:

      There is no specific oil that can help. Any EO that eases anxiety and makes you feel more relaxed is good for that purpose.

  12. Emily says:

    Which oils help with anxiety, depression, stress relief, clearing your mind, and sleep smell really good but aren’t too strong and can be used in a diffuser and away from home(smell, massage, etc.) I have anxiety, depression, get stressed very easily, have trouble clearing my mind, and have trouble sleeping.

    • Jenny Hills, Medical Writer and Researcher says:

      Hi Emily, there are many EOs for these purposes and many of them are mentioned in the article, but the smell itself and whether it’s too strong for you is a matter of experimenting and seeing what you like and what not, and it’s something different for each person.

  13. Ron B says:

    Perhaps I am just no seeing it but in the formula for the blend for depression and anxiety the various EO’s are dosed out in parts. I am used to seeing drops listed to tell me how much of each oil to use.

    Could someone help out a beginner here and explain to me what a part is and how I would measure it out?

    Thank You in advance for your time.

    • Jenny Hills, Medical Writer and Researcher says:

      Hi Rob, the word “part” is used for ratio, and is the relationship between two or more groups. For example, if a diluted solution contains double the amount of water added to substance A, then you use 1 part substance A and 2 parts water. Part can be translated into teaspoon, tablespoon, cups, drops etc. So in the EO recipe, you can decide that 1 drop equals to a part, or if you want a larger amount you can decide that 1 teaspoon equals to one part. In the case of this recipe the ratio is not important and is used as an example. You can create your own blend or experiment with several blends to see what your favorite EOs are.

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