10 Best Essential Oils for Baths

Love taking baths? Essential oils can be a great addition to help boost your mood, soothe your skin, and so much more. Find out the 10 best essential oils to use in the bath, and recipes to use in your everyday routine.

amber essential oil bottle

Essential Oils in the Bath vs. Store-Bought Bubble Bath

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Nothing beats a relaxing soak to escape the stresses of everyday life. However, the bubbles and bath bombs you’re adding may be causing more harm than good. Unfortunately, those store-bought bath products often release toxic ingredients due to artificial dyes and scents.

Alongside artificial dyes and scents, there are ingredients such as talc (often used in bath bombs) which is a known carcinogen and parabens which are harmful preservatives. Worse yet, these ingredients are usually undisclosed, listed simply as “fragrance” or “coloring” making users unaware of the damage their dip in the bath is causing.

Thankfully, switching these products for essential oils in the bath will avoid steeping your skin in unknown chemicals. Not only that, but they also offer a wealth of benefits that far surpass any store-bought bubble bath.

tincture bottle with two bath bombs

Benefits of Essential Oils in The Bath

Boost Your Mood

While we all know closing the bathroom door to the outside world and embracing some self-care is guaranteed to boost your mood, there is actually some science as to why. The scents in essential oils help to stimulate the limbic area of the brain, which is tied to your mood.

Taking a bath with essential oils is like an aromatherapy session in your own bathroom and depending on the oils you choose you can leave your bathroom feeling relaxed, calm, revitalized, uplifted etc. 

Soothe Your Skin

If your skin suffers from inflammation or dryness, essential oils in the bath can help to soothe and replenish. Essential oils such as lavender, rose, sandalwood and ylang-ylang are excellent choices for the skin. Each one offers various hydrating properties that will naturally support and nourish the skin. 

Relax Tired Muscles

A warm bath helps relax tired muscles as it encourages blood circulation around your body. The addition of essential oils in the bath heightens this and with the increased blood flow, your muscles are provided with more oxygen and nutrients which relieves muscles of pain, tightness, or cramps. Marjoram and rosemary in particular benefit muscle fatigue and are ideal essential oils for baths.

Clear Your Sinuses

Essential oils like eucalyptus are excellent for opening the sinuses if you’re feeling stuffed up and one of the best ways to enjoy this benefit is by adding it to your bath. Not only does the steam increase humidity which thins the mucus causing your stuffy sinuses, but eucalyptus is a natural decongestant, so the combination can do wonders for your sinuses.

feet in bath with essential oils

10 of The Best Essential Oils for Baths

Before you start using essential oils in the bath, be sure they’re made for topical use (most are not), and do not have synthetic ingredients or pesticides. You can get all of the essential oils below from my favorite brand at up to 60% off + free shipping on US orders.

  1. Eucalyptus
    As mentioned eucalyptus is a natural decongestant which helps to helps to clear the sinuses. Its refreshing scent is an added bonus that many people find calming as it reminds them of nature.
  1. Jasmine
    Jasmine is one of the best essential oils for romance as it is an aphrodisiac. It also pairs well with ylang ylang and the combination is a renowned stress reliever. These jasmine and rose bath salts are a great way to add this oil to your routine.
  2. Marjoram
    Marjoram essential oil is one of the best ways to balance hormones naturally. Other benefits include; soothing tired muscles, calming the skin from hormonal breakouts and aiding stomach cramps. A few drops in your bath can also help support a healthy respiratory system.
  1. Orange
    This uplifting scent pairs well with florals like jasmine, rose, and ylang-ylang. Orange essential oil is ideal for the bath as it can help increase collagen production and blood flow which boosts anti-aging. Note, it can make your skin photo-sensitive (or prone to sunburns) so you may want to avoid the sun for 24 hours after use.
  1. Roman (or German) Chamomile
    Roman Chamomile pairs well with Lavender for a relaxing, calming experience. It is a great essential oil for baths as its soothing benefits help promote youthful, glowing skin. 
  1. Lavender
    There are many uses for lavender essential oil including these DIY lavender bath salts. It is one of the most popular essential oils for baths due to its calming  and sleep inducing properties which are particularly beneficial for those suffering with insomnia, depression or anxiety.
  2. Rose
    Not only is rose essential oil a warm, floral scent that’s calming to the mind but it is excellent for the skin too. It helps reduce inflammation, relax muscles, and regenerates the skin all while you sit and soak.
  1. Rosemary
    Rosemary essential oil is another oil that is great for both body and mind. It is believed to help provide clarity and relieve stress – ideal after a tough day. It also helps to soothe tired muscles and pairs well with lavender and marjoram.
  1. Sandalwood
    This grounding scent is great for calming and boosting your mood making it an excellent essential oil to use in the bath. It pairs well with floral oils like ylang-ylang, jasmine, and lavender for an overall relaxing, sleep-inducing soak.
  1. Ylang Ylang
    This sweet, floral scent is both romantic and uplifting. Like jasmine, it is a great essential oil for baths with a partner as it is an aphrodisiac. Not only does it promote relaxation but it is also used in aromatherapy to aid memory and lower blood pressure.
two amber essential oil bottles

Where to Buy Essential Oils For Baths

While there are many benefits to essential oils in the bath, not all essential oils are made equal. It is vital you purchase from a reputable brand to ensure the essential oils you are using are safe and of the best quality to maximize benefits. Young Living is the only brand of essential oils that I recommend using. Learn why you should use Young Living and how to get the oils mentioned at up to 60% off with free shipping.

Tips For Using Essential Oils In The Bath

  • Don’t add directly to the bath. Essential oils are not water soluble, so pouring them in directly will create a film on top which when in contact with your skin may cause irritation. Instead, you need to disperse the oils within the bath water. The best way to do this is by using a carrier.
  • Combine essential oils with a carrier oil. A carrier oil helps the essential oils reach your skin more safely than if they were on their own. Carrier oils such as coconut, olive, jojoba, or almond oil also have their own skin nourishing properties, so the combination will heighten the bath benefits.
  • Choose essential oils wisely – Not all essential oils in the bath are soothing. Some can be too irritating or feel hot to the skin like black pepper, cassia, cinnamon, clove, hyssop, lemongrass, oregano, peppermint, thyme, and wintergreen. Stick to the list above for best results.

How to Add Essential Oils to Baths

  1. Fill tub with warm water to the temperature you want. 
  2. Combine 5-10 drops essential oils with 1 tbsp carrier oil (like almond or avocado oil).
  3. Add carrier oil + essential oil combination to the bath water. 
  4. Swish the bath water around to mix essential oils well in the water. 
  5. Carefully get in the tub (be careful as the tub floor could be slippery). 
  6. Soak in tub for 20 minutes.
  7. Exit tub when you’re done soaking and drain. 
  8. If the tub bottom has an oily residue, use this soft scrub cleaner to clean it. 
essential oil bottle with towels

Essential Oil Bath Recipes

You can mix and match essential oils to add to the bath but keep it at 5-10 drops of essential oils total per bath time. Here are some recipe ideas: 

  • Sleepytime: 6 drops Lavender, 4 drops Roman or German Chamomile
  • Romantic: 4 drops Orange, 3 drops Jasmine, Ylang Ylang or Rose
  • Tired Muscles: 3 drops Marjoram, 2 drops Rosemary, 3 drops Lavender
  • Clear Sinuses: 5 drops Eucalyptus, 2 drops Lavender

Can I Use Shampoo and Body Wash in the Tub? 

You can use your favorite natural shampoo or body wash to wash your hair and body in the tub. You may want to rinse your hair in the faucet or do a quick rinse in the shower if there’s excess soap in the tub. 

Can I Use Essential Oils for Kids’ Baths? 

Yes, just adjust the amount of essential oils for the age of the child and talk to your physician or health care practitioner as well for recommendations. For ages 2-5, use 2-4 drops of essential oils in a bath. For ages 5-10, use 4-6 drops in a bath. For ages 10 and up, use as you would for an adult (5-10 drops in a bath). Be sure to learn how to use essential oils safely for kids

Can I Add Epsom Salts to the Bath? 

Yes! Epsom salts pair well with essential oils in the bath. Read our Ultimate Guide to Taking a Detox Bath which includes 6 Detox Bath Recipes.

bowls of epsom salts and blue towel

Want More DIY Recipes?

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How to Get Started with Essential Oils

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