We’ve talked about essential oils for gorgeous skin and staying healthy, but now that it’s almost January, we’re all thinking about detoxing and getting rid of the various holiday excesses. Adding essential oils to your daily routine can help put you in the right mindset to start a detox, as well as support your body during any detoxes you may try. Quality matters here, so make sure you’re working with pure essential oils.
Here are 11 essential oils that can help support your detoxing efforts.
As always, please talk to your doctor before using essential oils or detoxing if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.
Top 10 Essential Oils for Detox
This citrus oil is a great one to have on hand for detoxing. Its refreshing and regenerating aroma can help brighten your mood if you’re feeling down, but it’s also a powerful antioxidant. Lemon is great for scavenging free radicals [source], which makes it a fantastic choice for supporting the liver through the detoxification process.
Everyday use: Add 1–2 drops of diluted lemon oil to the bottom of your feet. For tips on how to safely dilute essential oils in a carrier oil before placing them on the skin, read this important article.
Lavender essential oil has a calming scent, which makes it an excellent tonic for the nerves. It has a long history of use for treating migraines, headaches, anxiety, depression, nervous tension, and emotional stress.
While it’s true that the nervous system has a natural affinity for this relaxing aroma, it has also traditionally been used for digestion, sleep, and even pain relief [source].
Everyday use: Put 2 drops of diluted lavender oil on the wrists twice a day to support the nervous system or apply to the soles of the feet before bedtime.
Grapefruit contains antiviral, antiseptic, and diuretic properties, and animal studies show it may even help with weight loss [source]. It has traditionally been used to support the lymphatic and digestive systems. Like other citrus oils, the crisp, invigorating aroma of grapefruit can help refresh and uplift the mind, helping to disperse negative energy.
Everyday use: Add to homemade body wash or to a carrier oil for an Ayurvedic massage to help get the blood and lymph moving.
Peppermint is great if your detox has you feeling sluggish, as its cool, minty aroma is incredibly uplifting. It’s also stellar at supporting the digestive system in a number of ways [source].
Everyday use: Add to homemade toothpaste or make your own teeth whitening scrub.
This is a powerful antibacterial oil, which is helpful because most of us are harboring pathogens, bacteria, parasites, and more. This oil is also high in antioxidants and is wonderful to have on hand during cold and flu season [source].
Everyday use: Add to coconut oil for an instant hand sanitizer.
Lemongrass is a multi-purpose oil that can be used to support a healthy detox in a number of ways. Some of the therapeutic properties of lemongrass include analgesic [source], anti-fungal [source], anti-inflammatory [source], antioxidant, antibacterial [source], antiseptic, astringent and sedative, and in a very recent article, it is seen even to fight scabies [source].
Everyday use: Also a great beauty essential oil, lemongrass can be used on the skin diluted in your body lotion or other carrier oil.
Cold-pressed from the orange peel, sweet orange essential oil is excellent for helping you to feel more energized and revitalized, which is super beneficial if your detox has you feeling a bit tired as many do. It is also considered an effective oil for uplifting one’s mood, as well as reducing feelings of anxiety [source].
Everyday use: Use orange essential oil on its own or in combination with other essential oils in your diffuser for an uplifting aroma. Orange oil also makes an excellent household cleaner.
Ginger has long been used as a stomach soother, especially to aid digestion and help with feelings of motion sickness and nausea [source]. When I do a detox, my stomach tends to get upset in the beginning as my digestive system adjusts to toxins being removed from my body. If you’re in the same boat, ginger may be the way to go.
Everyday use: Diffuse ginger to help with feelings of upset stomach or whip up a simple massage oil and give your abdomen a light massage.
9. Juniper berry
Juniper berry is believed to help the body to throw off toxic wastes, as well as support health in a number of ways [source]. The herb has traditionally been used to improve elimination and support liver function, but it has a number of uses to support health as everything from an anti-inflammatory to an analgesic [source].
Everyday use: Add 2 drops of diluted oil to wrists twice a day to help support detox or use it in a scrub to get the lymph moving and aid detoxification.
10. Fennel seed
Fennel herb has historically been used for a number of gastrointestinal issues such as nausea, flatulence, and constipation and is lovely as an afternoon tea [source]. Like the herb, the essential oil is also commonly used to help with feelings of stomach upset which is helpful during a detox since the digestive system works overtime to help eliminate toxins.
Additionally, research has shown that fennel essential oil has the ability to scavenge free radicals [source] which makes it a fantastic choice to help support your detox.
Everyday use: Inhale fennel straight from the bottle or use it to give yourself a foot massage.
Stress is a major contributor to illness and disease, and bergamot happens to be one of the best essential oils for helping the body cope with different types of stress such as infection, inflammation, and it even works on the nervous system when your thoughts are out of whack [source]. It is often found in formulations for anxiety, and the uplifting aroma can even help lift your spirits if you’ve been feeling down in the dumps [source].
Everyday use: Apply diluted bergamot essential oil to the bottom of the feet at bedtime to promote restful sleep or add to a warm bath—read this article to learn how to add essential oils to the bath safely.
This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Gina Jansheski, a licensed, board-certified pediatrician who has been practicing for more than 20 years. Learn more about Hello Glow’s medical review board here. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.487
I only use Youngliving Essential oils and I put these oils in their veg capsules and take them every day ! I only trust Youngliving, and they are helping and working in me ,and making a difference in my health . Youngliving is Grade A purity!
Tanya McBryde says
These are just my thoughts I have an issue with high liver enzymes because of a gallbladder issue that I’m not going to go into . I use just pure lemon and squeeze it in my water and that seems to me that would solve a lot of these problems I think the lemon oil is fine to rub on your feet but I wouldn’t ingest it
Bill and Shauna Buxton says
I only use doTERRA.
Elizabeth Desrochers says
1 drop of synthetic oil is harmful to the DNA.
Be sure you are using the best brand… do your homework.
The best way is to learn Dowsing & that way, no one can ever lie to you.
Dowsing is so much more than finding water…
May God bless you on your Journey with Love and Blessings for all.
I put a few drops of the essential oil’s like lemon In an empty capsule i get at the health store. I also put in a little olive oil with it Which I keep in a little squirt bottle. Ithink this might be better than putting it with water which it doesn’t mix with. Any thoughts?
Try Dr. Soles aromatherapy foot pads on Amazon infused with pure essential oils. They work amazingly.
As a new EO user, I learned a lot from just reading the posts, i.e. I am a daily spring water bottle drinker so glad I came across the post warning not to put EO in a plastic water bottle; and wanted to say thank you to those that replied with their experiences and knowledge.
Never ingest unless you’re working with the certified aromatherapist! By putting lemon oil in your water you are running the risk of completely damaging and burning yourself agus in stomach lining. Water and oil don’t mix so you’re simply taking a shot of it. Never ingest!!!! Check out the online group using essential oils safely and you’ll have more guidance on this topic.
*burning your esophagus and stomach lining*
This happened to a friend of mine.
Captain D` says
i know first hand from my second cousin whose neighbor had a kid who went to school with this other kid and their mother’s friend from the book club almost died! I mean their is your proof right there! Well it burned a hole right through her throat and in her stomach. Sorry not trying to be a smart ass, but i hear a lot of stories on many things. I heard a lot of stories and still do from my doctors who have limited knowledge and any treatement outside their scope of training is dangerous for you. Just like pink sugar packets cause cancer. I have to take hormone replacemnt therapy due to a tumor and i heard how dangerous it was going to be. there are more ER visits for Vitamin C than many of the common “dagners” out there. scientists conduct studies and then ireesponsible reporters/writers want to get the big headline so they publish studies that are taken WAY out of context. oils are so dangerous to swallow…SHOW ME! don’t tell me what you heard or tell me what someone said…show me the actual study! Show me the actual evidence. now anecdotal stories do have their place, but usually it is debunking what doctors say lol. I remember when chiropractic care was considered quack treatment and no insurance covered it. Now Do Terra is a good product but they are so full of **it! I have been part of it..on the inside so yes i do know, but don’t take my word for it lol. Find out yourselves. however, posts about people who know someone who had this or that happen..straight gossip 98% of the time. most people love to play the victim and get attention so they exaggerate things greatly. Some people are just unhealthy or are predisposed to certain conditions, but that isn’t mentioned when discussing that they were negatively impacted by something. Oh and the sweet n low. you’d have to consume COPIOUS amounts on a daily basis if you are average person. Taking rat studies and not compensating for certain factors is lying IMO.
Judy Rowe says
I drink a 100 pure and potent lemon eo everyday. 4 drops at a time and i have done it daily for 2 years with zero side effects. Blood pressure is the lowest it has ever been. 106/69
You’re blessed. A friend did this for years, too, and fast forward years later, has horrible symptoms from having done it.
When ingesting EO you have to make sure it is 100% pure Therapeutic grade and specifically designated as a “dietary supplement” or “vitality” as in Young Living Essential Oils. The majority of the “retail store” products are synthetics that are NOT safe and may contain more chemicals that can create more harm. — Best rule of thumb – if the ingredients contain “fragrance”, “perfume”, or words you can’t even pronounce – it’s a synthetic. A pure oil has only one ingredient!
Elizabeth Desrochers says
1 drop of synthetic oil is harmful to the DNA. Know your oils
What brand? A common mistake is not using a pure brand.
doris pacheco says
I read that the lemon oil is ok to take with water and you say it can burn stomach lining which one . Take or don’t take.
Holly Thibodeaux says
You should never take essential oils with water it can cause severe burning in the throat and in your intestines you should always dilute your essential oils
Sara Y says
Lemon essential oils is derived from the rind and not the acidic fruit. It is deliciously fresh in fragrance and soft in flavor, not sour. It is safe for ingestion, it’s lemon! My guess is most people use one drop per 8 or more ounces of water or tea, although I had an upset tummy last night and ingested 1 drop of fennel EO to 3 ounces of water and I felt better soon after. Make sure you buy pure grade essential oils with no additives, organic is even better. Colleen, I would love to know your source that sites lemon oil ingestion as dangerous. I drink water all day everyday flavored with essential oils such as lemon, grapefruit, fennel, peppermint, and bergamot. No ill effects, just health and vitality!
Sara Y says
PS: You must mix and drink essential oils and water (or tea) in glass or stainless drink ware. The oils are potent and will breakdown plastic and leach leach harmful additives. Never, ever mix in plastic or add oils to plastic water bottles.
I religiously drink a cup of water with 4 drops OnGuard & 3 drops Lemon flavored with Organic Honey every morning since 2014 and thank God all is good. It’s kept me away from the Doctor’s office including my ENT whom I was seeing every 3 months. Of course, I eat better as well but at far as the EO’s being harmful, I don’t agree.
Tanya McBryde says
These are just my thoughts I have an issue with high liver enzymes because of a gallbladder issue that I’m not going to go . I use just pure lemon and squeeze it in my water and that seems to me that would solve a lot of these problems I think the lemon oil is fine to rub on your feet but I wouldn’t ingest it
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I just bought your book. Enjoying it. Could you please recommend a brand of EO? Is Now Foods a good brand? Can the oils be ingested?
Thanks in advance.
Amanda Page says
I would strongly recommend Young Living Essentials
Oils instead. I’ve used both I like the Now brand to clean and deodorize but for health benefits I’d go with Young Living.
I have used Young living but have switched to DoTerra for the last two years and extremely happy with them. Will not switch again, the blends offered and the wealth of benefits received by EO is phenomenal.
Do not ingest Now brand EOs!! Go with Young Living. They have the Seed to Seal guarantee which means they are in control of the entire process from planting carefully-chosen seeds on carefully-chosen soil, to distilling, bottling and sealing the bottle. The founder was the father of the modern-day Essential Oil movement and is essential oils to United States over 35 years ago. Every other company has copied him.
Sorry typo- He is esponsible for having brought essential oils to the United States over 35 years ago.
Millie | Add A Little says
Love all these scents – especially lemon!
Perfect timing for all of us who had a little too much over the holidays. :)