Is it safe to use essential oils during Pregnancy? 

The answer is yes!  👍

Provided we follow safety guidelines.


Women are the primary caretakers of children and elders in every country of the world. International studies demonstrate that when economics and politics create change, women take the lead in helping the family adjust to new realities and challenges.


Pregnancy and motherhood are amazing. At same time they’re challenging experiences for any woman. Here we have another opportunity to use aromatherapy as a natural tool to support us throughout, remembering that synthetic medicine must be kept to a minimum during pregnancy.


Aromatherapy techniques are safe and beneficial to maintain the general health of the expectant mother. They help minimise the discomforts of pregnancy, such as nausea, backache, general aches and pains, swollen legs and ankles, insomnia, emotional stress – and also looking after the little ones we may already have at home.

What are the “Pregnancy Safety Guidelines”?

The key point to remember is that the expectant mother is still a human being and the body is still able to metabolise and excrete the essential oils which are found in every-day food and drink. The body knows how to break them down and use them to balance the human physiology.

Many oils are suitable for use during pregnancy; the real danger comes when the dosages are incorrect, especially if too much. Essential oils work with the body, not against it. With low doses of oils, the body always remains in control.  

Essential oils should be avoided during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. After that, they bring much needed support from the second trimester onwards, including during childbirth and postnatal care.

That said, please stay away from the “No Go” list of essential oils: Oregano, Thyme, Clove, Cinnamon, Fennel, Sage, Hyssop, Peppermint, Cumin, Aniseed, Fennel, Star Anise, Sweet Birch and Wintergreen. 

Concentrations of Essential oils 

Robert Robert Tisserand, founder of the Tisserand Institute, Aromatherapy’s leading research and education centre,  recommends a 1% dilution for the expectant mother. This works out at 1 drop of essential oil to every 5ml of carrier oil (1 teaspoon of carrier + 1 drop essential oil). In addition, during pregnancy the sense of smell may be heightened, so a 1% dilution blend will provide a more comfortable level. 


We must use this guideline for topical massage, compresses and bath. To diffuse, we can still use eight drops, making sure we diffuse just a couple of hours a day.


Let’s see how to use Essential oils & carriers safely

Essential oils should be avoided the first 12 weeks of pregnancy

However, from the second trimester onwards, Aromatherapy helps to minimise nausea, backache, general aches and pains, swollen legs and ankles, emotional stress, and insomnia, as well also looking after the little ones we may already have at home.


Nausea & morning sickness:

Mandarin, sweet orange, Petitgrain



Sandalwood, Roman chamomile, Petitgrain.  Remember: Peppermint essential oil is not recommended.

Aches & Pains:  

Aromatherapy can help relieve pregnancy aches and pains and be a great de-stressing tool too. The hormone “Relaxin” is involved with relaxing the muscles and ligaments in the body, allowing the growing of the baby. Unfortunately, Relaxin softens all the joints in the body which can lead to various muscular aches and pains. 

A massage oil made with 25ml Jojoba and 5 drops of essential oil helps relieving the pain when applied to the areas of discomfort, like hips, neck, shoulders and lower back. Jojoba carrier oil has a similar molecular structure to sebum – so it’s balancing for the skin, even the oily one, without clogging pores.

Suggested blend: 2 drops of Roman Chamomile + 1 drop of French Marjoram + 2 drops of Mandarin. 


As hormones change throughout pregnancy, this can have a huge effect on us emotionally. Some women feel tearful while others experience anxiety and low moods. Flower essential oils are particularly good at supporting women at this time. Their aromas are sweet, soft, and ultimately feminine. Combined with woody essential oils, they are supportive of emotions and will enhance the respiratory system, allowing us to feel relaxed yet alert. 


Suggested blend in 25ml of Jojoba: 1 drop of Geranium + 1 drop of Frankincense + 3 drops of Grapefruit (bonus: Curbs cravings!). Simply massage this blend into your upper chest and inhale the calming aroma. 

Diffusers are a great way to support your emotional health as you can still go about your daily routine while getting the benefit of the essential oils.

The suggested blend for an Aroma Diffuser is 2 drops of Geranium + 2 drops of Frankincense + 4 drops of Grapefruit.

Remember to diffuse only a couple of hours a day.


Stretch marks: 


A lot of women are concerned about stretch marks developing whilst pregnant. This tends to be a familial thing;  if your Mum or sister were prone to stretch marks then it may be something you will develop too.


To help minimise stretch marks, from the beginning of the second trimester, apply a blend every other day to your abdomen, across your lower back, and to your thighs.  


You may add the following essential oils to 25ml of Jojoba oil: 2 drops of Neroli – for its effect on the growing layer of the skin + 3 drops of Mandarin. OR 3 drops of Lavender + 2 drop of Frankincense.


Aromatherapy doesn’t just nourish the skin –  the uplifting and calming essentials oils can also provide much-needed relief after a stressful day.


The lively baby:

Very often the developing baby responds positively to the massage of the belly given by its mother. A lively baby which may be causing its mother some discomfort, will calm down and be still for quite a while when its mother has been massaging her belly with a soothing and calming oil.

Better sleep:

Diffuse Lavender, Ylang Ylang (supports sadness), Vetiver (boosts sleep), Roman Chamomile (releases anger), Sandalwood (tackles fears), Spikenard (one of the best sedatives) or Frankincense half an hour before bedtime.  


Swollen legs & ankles: 

Are often a problem in the later months of pregnancy. Puffiness of the ankles after standing up and at the end of a day can be relieved by a leg massage with Geranium essential oil. Use smooth firm strokes, and move always from the ankles towards the thighs. For water retention, use Petitgrain, Orange, Juniper Berry or Cypress. 

Varicose veins:

The weight of the growing baby may cause pressure on the veins and arteries of the lower abdomen and give rise to circulatory problems, such as varicose veins and haemorrhoids. Lemon or Cypress are good choices for a massage.  


Tiredness & Fatigue:

Growing babies take a lot of energy from their mothers, so many pregnant women feel tired. From the second trimester, you can boost energy with invigorating essential oils and provide deep relaxation in the third.

When you need that “hug moment” during pregnancy don’t forget about GeraniumIt’s considered the mother of all essential oils. It brings a sense of balance and you feel “someone is taking care of you”.

Aromatic baths are the greatest luxuries and forms of relaxation for the expectant mothers. A massage with oils afterwards will nourish the skin and provide further relaxation. Once again, avoid the risky oils and over-hot water.


For Labor & the delivery room:

Bath or a massage with arnica carrier oil, and Arnica homeopathy to cope with the contractions.

Lavender is one of the most popular essential oils during childbirth and has been found to reduce maternal anxiety, to relieve pain and to lighten the mood.

Jasmine is another useful oil to use during childbirth. If it is massaged on the abdomen and lower back in the early stages of labour, it will relieve pain and strengthen the contractions. It helps with the expulsion of the placenta after delivery, and aids in postnatal recovery.


Postnatal care:

We may have to fight Baby blues: try Frankincense, Clary sage, Geranium, and Bergamot. Simply massage a blend into your upper chest and inhale the calming aromas.




The lower back muscles will remain tight, even for another few weeks after delivery. Relieve the pain with bath oils: use a 1% dilution if you are breastfeeding. Otherwise, it’s safe to go back to normal levels. 


We have nourishing carriers oil for crack nipples: Almond, Calendula, and Avocado. Apply after every feed and wash it before the next one . 

Jasmine and grapefruit can also help with Milk production. For Mastitis or blockage of milk ducts, apply a cold compress with German Chamomile and “cold Frankincense hydrolats,”  to draw heat out.


Use Rosehip or Calendula carrier oil for scaring, stitches and healing. 


Aromatherapy with Essential Oils is part of your holistic self-care – and helps care for others too


Because we are working with the safest essential oils they are also good for the little ones we may have at home. Whatever relaxes and helps the mother, relaxes and helps the whole family, making our journey more than just manageable!


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