I love diffusing essential oils since it’s one of the easiest and safest ways to use them. In fact, as I write this, I’m diffusing a potent anti-germ blend to help me out with this virus I’ve been fighting off. It’s incredibly simple to diffuse essential oils while you’re at home, but have you ever considered diffusing them in your car as well?
For me, having essential oils and a car diffuser has been a life-saver quite a few times. It’s come in incredibly handy for cranky babies and sick kids, as well as to help perk me up on a long drive. Car diffusers are great for your daily commute, while you’re out running errands, or even on a long trip!
How to use essential oils in the car
Even just 5 minutes of diffusing essential oils in the car on your way home, to the store, before your next appointment, or even when you’re grabbing a quick bite to eat can make all the difference in your day. Essential oils have a plethora of benefits [source], so why not utilize them while you’re driving? Essential oils that help you to feel more energetic, calm down when you need it, settle an upset stomach, fight germs, and boost your mood are all excellent choices to use in the car.
Don’t forget to take breaks
However, it’s also worth mentioning that long exposure to essential oils in a small space isn’t recommended, so it’s really best to diffuse during shorter trips in the car—like going to work or running errands. Although it’s not recommended, if you decide to diffuse on longer trips, make sure to give yourself a break every 15 minutes or so for at least the same amount of time by removing or turning off the diffuser and cracking a window.
Don’t diffuse with young kids or pets
Most car diffusers utilize passive diffusion—meaning the aroma isn’t as strong as other types of diffusion methods, such as heat, electricity, or water. However, because the inside of a vehicle is a very small, confined space, even a lighter aroma can become quite overpowering and may cause an adverse reaction. This is especially true with the more potent essential oils. For these reasons, essential oils shouldn’t be used with pets, infants, or young children in the car.
If you’re noticing that the aroma is too strong for you, roll down a window until you can safely pull over to remove and empty out the diffuser. Utilizing safe diffusing practices and following the manufacturer’s instructions for your diffuser are very important and can greatly reduce the chance of adverse reactions.
Car diffuser options
Diffusing in your car can be achieved in a few different ways. The simplest is just to place a cotton ball with essential oils on it near the air conditioner vent. There are a number of very good car diffusers on the market that come in a variety of shapes and styles or you can make your own.
I really like the design of this car diffuser. It’s made so that the essential oils are placed in the bottle, and the wooden sticks absorb and pull the oils up and out of the bottle. Then, the air blowing in your car vents helps disperse the aroma throughout the car.
12 Essential Oil Blends for the Car
Below, I’ve listed twelve essential oils blends that are enjoyable for diffusing in the car. Just remember that these recipes are just a general guide to get you started, so make sure you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations and adjust the number of drops in each recipe accordingly. As always, feel free to substitute oils based on your preferences.
If you’ve had a long day at work (or at home!) and need to decompress a bit, try one of the following blends to help you wind down and transition to a more relaxed state of mind. These are relaxing to use after any stressful situation when you just need a little help chilling out a bit.
1. Long Day
2. Wind Down
3. Stress Less
If you’re feeling sluggish on your morning commute and need some help mentally preparing for your day, or if you’re completely worn out from your never-ending to-do list, try one of the following three blends. They can all help you feel more awake for your day or perk you up for the evening ahead.
4. Mood Boost
5. Energize Me
6. Liquid Sunshine
If you’re on a road trip and you or someone else in your car is getting car sick, consider using one of these next three blends. Each one has different essential oils that can help your stomach feel more settled, and each one is unique in its own way. Feel free to prepare these blends ahead of time to have them ready to go, or simply grab two or three of the oils listed below to take along for your next trip.
7. Tummy Troubles
8. No More Nausea
9. Minty Fresh
Have you been exposed to illness while at work, visiting a friend, or staying at a family member’s house? If so, try one of the following anti-germ blends while you’re in your car. Each blend contains at least one oil that has antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal effects, as well as supportive oils that contain additional therapeutic properties.
10. Go-To Germ Blend
11. No Thyme for Sickness
12. Easy Antimicrobial Blend
As you can see, there are a number of ways that essential oils can be beneficial to use in the car. From creating a more calm and relaxed atmosphere to fighting off germs, essential oils can be incredibly helpful even while you’re driving. Tell me, do you diffuse while driving? If so, which are your favorite oils for use in the car?
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Gina Jansheski, a licensed, board-certified physician with over 20 years of experience in practice. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical reviewers here. As always, this is not personal medical advice, and we recommend that you talk with your doctor before using this recipe to determine what’s best for you.6