I love essential oils, and I’ve been known to use them for everything. Green cleaning? Skincare products? Staying healthy? Check, check, and check.
But I especially love them for taking care of everyday aches and pains like sore joints, insomnia, and bug bites. And don’t even get me started on using them for headaches! An essential oil roll-on remedy is a great option for headache relief!
These days, instead of popping a pill when I feel a headache coming on, I reach for some of my fave oils to help relieve tension and ease the pain. Simply combine them in a little roller bottle, dilute with the carrier oil as directed in the recipe, and apply directly to the forehead.
Let the oils sink in and do their thing for a few minutes, and kiss your headaches goodbye.
DIY Essential Oil Headache Roll-On
The magic ingredients in this headache concoction are lavender, peppermint, and cajeput oils. While they’re helpful at relieving headaches by themselves, when combined, they create a migraine-busting blend that can stop most headaches in their tracks.
Here’s how it works:
Lavender essential oil has been shown to effectively treat migraine headaches by decreasing the severity of symptoms [source] as well as by preventing the onset altogether [source]. Lavender oil is thought to be effective because of its sedative effects on the nervous system [source].
According to one study, peppermint oil is significantly more effective than placebo at curing tension headaches [source]. When applied to the temples, the menthol in peppermint oil has a significant analgesic effect [source], which in turn decreases pain and inflammation.
Cajeput is much like eucalyptus in that it contains a natural chemical called cineole, that when applied directly to skin, causes it to get warm and become slightly irritated. This helps “confuse” nerve endings in the skin and mask pain [source]. It’s often used to treat toothaches and joint pain, but when applied to the temples, it can relieve head pain as well.
How to Use Essential Oils for Headaches
This headache relief roll-on works by applying a small amount of the essential oil mixture (essential oils that have been diluted in a carrier oil) to the temples, forehead, jawline, and neck—pretty much anywhere you might feel tension in the face and head.
The oils serve two purposes: to relieve tension by way of aromatherapy and to confuse pain receptors in the skin.
1. Next time you feel a headache coming on, roll a small amount of the diluted essential oil mixture directly onto the temples and forehead. Using your fingers, massage the oil mixture into the skin (it helps if you also try to relax your body at the same time.)
2. Apply the oil anywhere else you notice tension, such as along the jawline or at the base of your head where it meets your neck.
3. Lastly, apply it to your wrists (your pulse points) and breathe deeply, inhaling the fragrance directly into your lungs.
4. Re-apply the diluted essential oil mixture every 1–2 hours as needed until your headache is gone.
As a bonus, this essential oil headache roll-on also works for other aches and pains like joint pain, toothaches, and general soreness. Just apply directly to the problem area and massage into the skin.
Headache Essential Oil FAQ
Is this essential oil blend good for sinus headaches?
Yes, the eucalyptus and peppermint oil compounds in this blend work well for alleviating sinus headaches!
Can I use this blend in a diffuser?
Yes, you certainly can. Keep in mind, however, that this essential oil mixture contains menthols from peppermint and cineole from cajeput, so it may be best to avoid diffusing around very young children or pets. For some other excellent diffuser oil blends, try this calming lavender, the stress blend, or a soothing headache blend.
Do I have to use all the essential oils called for in this recipe?
Nope! Feel free to save a little money and leave out oils that you don’t have or can’t afford.
Where is a good place to get high-quality oils on a budget?
Can I adjust the recipe for larger roller bottles?
Yes, it’s okay to scale the recipe up or down, depending on the size of your bottles. Our recipe calls for a 10 ml roller bottle, but if you’re using a 20 ml bottle, simply double the amount of essential oils used. Then fill the rest of the roller bottle with carrier oil to keep the same dilution so it will be safe to use on the skin.
Need some more natural headache remedies for when tension hits? Here are some more of our favorites.
Essential Oil Headache Roll-On
- 10 ml roller bottle
- Combine the essential oils in a 10 ml roller bottle and mix. Fill the bottle the rest of the way with a carrier oil (we like jojoba, almond, or grapeseed oil).
- Whenever you feel a headache coming on, apply the oil directly to the temples and massage into skin.
- Next time you feel a headache coming on, roll a small amount of the diluted essential oil mixture directly onto the temples and forehead. Using your fingers, massage the oils into skin (it helps if you try to relax your body at the same time.)
- Apply oil anywhere else you notice tension, such as along the jaw line or at the base of your head where it meets your neck.
- Lastly, apply essential oil to your wrists (your pulse points) and breathe deeply, inhaling the fragrance directly into your lungs.
- Re-apply the oil every 1–2 hours as needed until your headache is gone.
This post was medically reviewed by Dr. Holly Smith, a board-certified physician in nephrology and internal medicine with a background in nutrition. 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.208