Essential Oils 101: Lavender

There comes a time when things that our moms did when we were younger finally makes sense. For me, that moment came when I realized why my mom loved lavender so much. This is a woman who used to put little sachets of fresh lavender in each of her (and my) dresser drawers, and hide a bar of lavender-scented soap in the back of every closet to keep linens and towels smelling fresh. 

So let’s dive into some lovely uses for lavender:


Perhaps one of the most widely-known benefits of lavender is its calming properties. Add a few drops to lotion, hair products, or other skin-care products to help unwind from a stressful day. Lavender oil can also be diffused or simply inhaled to soothe your body before bedtime as a sleep aid.

Health Benefits

Lesser-known uses for lavender oil include its topical properties. A drop of oil on an insect bite, bee sting, or minor burn can reduce swelling or itching, and even ease pain. Lavender oil can also be utilized as a home remedy for eczema or dermatitis. Placing a drop of lavender oil on the end of your tongue, behind your ears or around your belly button is also a trick to alleviate nausea or motion sickness.

Food and Beverages

As the use of edible floral elements has become more popular, I’ve noticed a few food and drink products including lavender. One of my favorites is a lemon lavender granola that I found at Whole Foods a while ago. Also increasing in popularity is lavender lemonade - an addition to menus in a few coffee shops I frequent. Adding a few drops of lavender oil to recipes can heighten flavor and transport you to a field of lavender in France on the spot. I definitely recommend giving it a try.

Fun Facts
  • It takes 27 square feet of lavender plants to make one 15ml bottle of Lavender essential oil

  • Lavender grows in regions of France, Spain, Utah, and Colorado

  • Lavender is part of the mint family

  • The word ‘lavender’ is rumored to have come from the Latin words “lividus” meaning “bluish color” and “lavare” meaning “to wash”

  • Egyptians and Romans often used lavender as a perfume

I may be a little biased because I’ve made a point to attend Colorado’s annual Lavender Festival (with my lavender-loving mom, of course) the past three years in a row, but can you blame us for being BIG fans? Not only does it smell incredible, but it has other properties and uses that make it one of the best–and most versatile–plants out there. I feel more calm just thinking about it.