4 Best Essential Oils for Headache Relief and How to use them

Using essential oils for headache relief. Are you fed up with trying different home remedies for headache relief? Looking for something more effective to get rid of your headache? Might just be time to try essential oils. Certain essential oils are good for headache relief.

Essential oils are scented and potent oils that have become an important component of the pain management tool kit. They are concentrated botanical extracts with the right aroma that play an important role in the treatment of various ailments. Studies show that some essential oils may act as major stress relievers.

Here we have discussed some of the most common essential oils for headache relief.

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Essential Oils for Headache Relief

1. Lavender oil

Lavender essential oil has been used as an anxiolytic drug, a mood stabilizer, a sedative, spasmolytic, antihypertensive, antimicrobial, analgesic agent as well as a wound-healing accelerator. Lavender oil is one of the most effective natural remedies to manage headaches and migraines. It helps to reduce stress and allows individuals to enjoy a relaxed sleep while reducing headaches triggered by stress. This study revealed that the inhalation of lavender oil may be an effective and safe treatment in the acute management of migraine headaches.

How to use: Put oil in a warm bath and soak your stress away. Another way is by direct application on your skin. You may also choose to inhale the oil directly from the bottle.

Essential Oils for Headache Relief
Essential oils for headache relief

Caution: While lavender essential oil is generally considered safe to use without dilution, it is always safer to dilute essential oils before applying them directly to your skin. See dilution guide here.

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2. Peppermint oil

Do you often experience tension headaches? Well, peppermint oil must be your top priority. According to Healthline, a tension headache is the most common type of headache. It can cause mild, moderate, or intense pain behind your eyes and in your head and neck. Some people say that a tension headache feels like a tight band around their forehead.

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Peppermint oil has proven to be effective against tension headache. The oil’s cooling effect prevents muscle contraction of the neck and head areas while promoting blood flow to these regions. Solutions of 10% peppermint oil in ethanol are licensed for the treatment of tension-type headache in adults and children above 6 years.

How to Use: Topical application of diluted peppermint oil on to affected area. Also you may opt for direct inhalation of the oil.

3. Rosemary oil

Rosemary is not only a savory food seasoning herb, it is used for many purposes. Researches reveal that rosemary oil possesses anti-inflammatory properties that relieve pain. It improves blood flow and treats headache.

According to this study, rosemary essential oil is also useful for opioid withdrawal symptoms because it helps to relieve pain and insomnia, which relate to headaches. Another study shows that rosemary essential oil is also great for soothing pain and injury.

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4. Geranium oil

According to Pubmed, geranium essential oil improves blood circulation, treats congestion, cleans the lymphatic system, strengthens the immune system, and is effective in combating nervousness, constipation, insomnia, anxiety, and high blood pressure.

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Also, headaches may accompany premenstrual syndrome (PMS). The changes in the hormonal levels before the menstrual cycle might likely cause headaches. To get relief, add geranium essential oil in a carrier oil and circularly massage it on the abdomen. Another way is by adding 5 to 8 drops of geranium oil in a bath with 1tbs of carrier oil.      

Best Essential Oils for Headache
Best Essential Oils for Headache

How to Use Essential Oils for Headache Relief

  1. Put a few drops of whichever essential oil you are using on a cotton ball and inhale it directly.
  2. Put essential oil drops on a cold washcloth and place the cloth either at the back of your neck or on your head.
  3. Add diluted essential oils to a hot water bath; this helps to treat headaches.


Your essential oil cabinet may not be the first place you would go for pain treatment. However, essential oils can prove to be beneficial for many ailments, including headaches. Although over-the-counter medications like paracetamol or ibuprofen help you deal with routine headaches, they may produce various adverse effects.

So, the next time you get a headache, try using essential oils instead of pain killers.

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