What is eucalyptus?
Eucalyptus is an evergreen plant native to Australia. It’s fast-growing and can be planted in the UK in a spot that gets full sunshine. There are a number of benefits of eucalyptus for your health and around the home.
It’s a medicinal plant meaning that it can be used to help treat a number of symptoms including coughs and colds. You’ve probably tasted eucalyptus in cough sweets or in vapour rubs such as Vicks.
In my opinion, it’s one of the most ‘essential’ of the essential oils because it can be used in so many different ways.
How to use eucalyptus
One of the benefits of eucalyptus is its so multi-purpose.
It can be used in two forms: as an essential oil (the leaves are steam distilled) or you can use the actual plant itself.
Here are some ideas for you to try
A eucalyptus shower
I buy bunches from my local florist (they usually sell me some clippings for about a fiver), tie into a knot and hang above the shower head. It smells absolutely divine anyway, however, the steam helps release the eucalyptus scent and is like being in a spa. I also like seeing greenery in my bathroom.
Steaming to help ease coughs and colds
Suffering with a cough or a bunged up nose? Try adding a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil to a sink of hot water, putting a towel over your head and breathing in the steam to help clear your airwaves.
I also add eucalyptus to my essential oil diffuser to help soothe any cold symptoms.
A natural insect repellent
I’m one of those people who mosquitoes tend to love and I don’t know why. I’ve tried so many ideas over the years including eating my body weight in Marmite after reading it would help (please note, it doesn’t but it will make you very popular amongst backpackers).
Eucalyptus plants are supposed to be a natural insect repellent, which is why I’m spending this weekend down my local garden centre. According to the RHS website, they should be planted in Spring / Summer and like a nice sunny spot.
Also try diluting eucalyptus essential oil with witch hazel (you can buy witch hazel in health food shops, larger chemists, or online) into a spray bottle for a natural insect repellent.
Where to buy eucalyptus
Eucalyptus is often used for greenery in flower arrangements so you should be able to buy clippings from your local flower shop. I’ve found it costs anything from £5-15 depending on the size of the bunch – but a fiver’s worth is enough for a eucalyptus shower.
I also think they look great in a vase on their own.
As always with essential oils buy from a reputable supplier to make sure you’re buying a proper product (and not one mixed with cheaper ingredients).
10 benefits of eucalyptus
Eucalyptus has antiviral, anticatarrhal and antibacterial properties. It helps you breathe easier and clears any mucus from your chest. It can be used to treat symptoms of sinusitis, colds, and cough.
Use by putting a few drops on your pillow or pyjamas if you’re feeling bunged up and struggling to sleep at night to help ease congestion.
It can be made into a salve for achy muscles. Eucalyptus also acts as pain relief and reduces inflammation. It can also be used for headaches by rubbing the temples. Tiger Balm is made from Eucalyptus.
Add a few drops of eucalyptus essential oils to coconut oil to create a quick and easy muscle rub.
Eucalyptus has natural disinfecting properties. It can be used for cleaning wounds (always dilute first) as well as around the home.
Mix eucalyptus essential oils with water into a spray bottle and use as a natural disinfectant cleaning spray.
Recreate a home spa and create a luxury bathing experience.
Put 1-2 cups of epsom salts (helps ease achy muscles), a tablespoon of carrier oil (such as sweet almond, coconut or jojoba oil) and a few drops of eucalyptus oils into a hot bath. Mix before getting in, then relax and enjoy.
Research has found eucalyptus may help reduce anxiety and stress. A 2014 study found one of the properties of eucalyptus was effective in decreasing anxiety.
Add a few drops of eucalyptus to an essential oil diffuser.
There are a number of benefits of eucalyptus for our emotional health as well. It’s said to have a positive impact on our mental wellbeing.
Eucalyptus can help open up a room that feels a bit closed or needs brightening.
Eucalyptus helps us think clearer and brings about feelings of positivity and optimism.
Try adding a few drops of eucalyptus essential oils to distilled water into a spray bottle and create your own uplifting spray.
It also rids us of trapped emotions and long term beliefs that no longer serve us.
Try adding a few drops to a carrier oil (sweet almond, jojoba or coconut oil) and massage your temples to release negative emotions.
It’s also known as the ‘herb of protection’ helping to guard us from situations and people who may be harmful.
Mix with a carrier oil and rub on your pulse points for an extra confidence boost.
The herb can be used as a tool for expanding your boundaries and moving forward confidently and without fear.
Add a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil to a carrier oil and rub into your body’s 6 pressure points: right behind your ears; place onto each side of your nostril; massage onto your shoulders; temples; hairline; and between your eyebrows and crown of your head for your 3rd eye.
Things to note
Essential oils should be diluted to stop them causing irritation to the skin. Also be mindful if using when pregnant or on a child.
I’ve also included some affiliate links to products I have bought in the past and can verify for. I’m not suggesting Amazon is the only place to buy from – this is just to help give you some ideas.