Peppermint essential oil is one of the most popular and versatile essential oils out there. It’s made using a CO2 or cold extraction method on a combination of spearmint and water mint. For thousands of years, peppermint oil has been used for a wide variety of medicinal and household purposes.
Essential oils are the very essence of a plant, and they’re incredibly potent, volatile, and versatile. Like all other essential oils, peppermint oil has antimicrobial, antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties. Not only that, but research shows that it works as a strong antioxidant with anti-tumor, anti-allergenic, and painkilling effects.
Its refreshing smell, cooling sensation, and relaxing effect on the body make peppermint oil a must in every household. These are some of the many beauty, health, and home uses of peppermint oil.
1. Sinus and Respiratory Care
Peppermint oil works as a decongestant and expectorant, meaning that it clears the sinuses and helps to break up mucus in the lungs so that it can more easily be coughed up. Using peppermint oil for the sinuses is a great way to prevent a cold from becoming a full-blown sinus infection.
People with the flu, cough, cold, sinusitis, asthma, and bronchitis can benefit from using peppermint oil to open up airways.
Create a facial steam bath by filling a large bowl halfway with hot water (not boiling). Add a few drops of peppermint oil to the water, and put your face over the bowl. Drape a towel over the back of your head so that it falls to either side of the bowl, trapping the steam in. Breathe normally and observe how quickly your airways open up.
2. Digestive Health
Probably the most popular use of peppermint oil is in the treatment of digestive problems such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), nausea, indigestion, bloating, and gas.
Since peppermint oil has antispasmodic properties, it soothes the muscles in the GI tract and allows for more effective and efficient digestion. Even the smell alone is known to soothe the stomach and relieve symptoms like nausea.
Many studies confirm that peppermint oil is an effective treatment for IBS, which includes symptoms such as cramping, diarrhea, constipation, gas, and bloating. (1)(2)(3)
RELATED: Peppermint Oil for Upset Stomach
3. Muscle and Joint Pain Relief
Peppermint oil has an extremely soothing effect on painful and sore muscles and joints. Its antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, and cooling properties make it a natural painkiller and muscle relaxant.
Use peppermint oil to help relieve aches, pains, and spasms associated with muscle injury, overexertion, arthritis, or chronic pain conditions like fibromyalgia.
Simply add a few drops of peppermint oil to a warm bath and soak in it for up to half an hour. Alternatively, you can mix a few drops of peppermint oil with a carrier oil (almond oil, coconut oil, jojoba oil, etc.) and apply it directly to the skin. Test it first on a small patch of skin on the arm to ensure that you are not sensitive to peppermint oil.
4. Headache Relief
The anti-inflammatory and cooling effects of peppermint oil make it a perfect remedy for tension headaches. You can use it aromatically, smelled straight from the bottle or from a diffuser, or apply it topically to the temples, forehead, behind the jawbone, and at the nape of the neck after it is mixed with a carrier oil.
5. Oral Hygiene and Care
Peppermint oil acts as a painkiller, so it can be used to help relieve toothaches and pain in the gum.
Its antibacterial and antifungal properties work to fight off any bacteria or fungi that may be hanging around in the mouth, causing bad breath or threatening infection.
You can make your own homemade mouthwash using water, baking soda, and peppermint oil.
6. Natural Pest Repellent
While you may enjoy kicking back to the fresh smell of a peppermint oil diffuser, many bugs, critters, and pests don’t.
Peppermint oil can be used to repel ticks, fleas, mosquitoes, lice, cockroaches, spiders, and mice. Combine peppermint oil with other essential oils that are also known to repel pests, and you can make your own foolproof, homemade insect repellent. (4)
Other essential oils that can be used as repellents include citronella, eucalyptus, rosemary, tea tree, lemongrass, cedar, patchouli, and clove.
7. Skin Care
The pleasant cooling sensation that peppermint oil provides can counteract itchy, hot, and irritated skin. It can be applied to bug bites, rashes, bruises, and minor cuts as an antimicrobial to prevent infection.
Acne can also be treated using peppermint oil, because it helps to keep the skin clean and bacteria-free, preventing new pimples and blackheads from forming.
Use peppermint oil to make your own clarifying face wash that will leave you feeling fresh and rejuvenated after every wash. To make the face wash, mix together water, unscented glycerin soap, lemon oil, and peppermint oil. Add it to your natural beauty routine every day for a clear and radiant skin.
8. Hair and Scalp Care
For a natural hair growth remedy, apply peppermint oil mixed with a carrier oil directly to the scalp and massage it in for 5–10 minutes. Its antiseptic, regenerative, and stimulating effects help to unclog any blocked hair follicles and stimulate the growth of new hair.
It can also help to heal a dry, flaky scalp, reducing dandruff and giving the hair a shinier, healthier look.
You can use peppermint oil to help neutralize odors in the places around your home that tend to collect funky smells.
The peppermint oil kills bacteria and fungi that have settled in your shoes, laundry basket, or your pet’s favorite spot.
Make your own deodorizing spray by mixing water, fabric softener, baking soda, peppermint oil, and tea tree oil in a spray bottle.
To make deodorizers that you can place in shoes or in the laundry basket, mix a few drops of peppermint oil with some baking soda and pack in a cheesecloth, diaper cloth, or in the feet of an old pair of stockings and tie tightly with string. Place in an area that could use some deodorizing.
10. Reduce Stress and Reenergize
Essential oils like peppermint oil have the unique ability to both soothe and energize at the same time. Put a few drops of essential oil in a diffuser and watch your stress levels drop and your energy rise.
Peppermint oil helps to clear the clutter in your mind, boosting mental activity and enhancing clarity of thinking.
It is often used in aromatherapy and can serve as a great supplement to enhance meditation, yoga, and other stress-reducing activities.
Peppermint oil is an extremely useful thing to have around the house. Because of its versatility, it’s a perfect addition to your medicine cabinet, your natural beauty regimen, and in many natural home products. Every home needs a bottle of natural, organic peppermint oil.