Aromatics Wellness Blog

Top 10 essential oils for kids!

10 Essential oils for kids that are safe & effective. And kids love how they smell!

Using essential oils for kids vs adults

It goes without saying that kids are smaller than adults! But it sometimes needs to be said that, because they’re smaller, we can use essential oils for kids differently than we do for adults. Their systems tend to be more sensitive and responsive.

A child doesn’t usually need as much essential oil as an adult.

An adult’s blend for digestion might call for 15 to 18 drops of essential oil in 1 oz (30 ml) of carrier oil. (That’s a 3% dilution.) A child’s blend for the same issue would only need 5 to 6 drops of essential oil in 1 oz (30 ml) of carrier. (That’s a 1% dilution.)

And some essential oils are simply too strong for children altogether.

They’re full of potent components that can easily irritate children’s sensitive skin, or overwhelm their systems—causing issues like headaches, sniffles, nausea, irritability, and drowsiness. Kids don’t always have the vocabulary to tell us when something isn’t right, so we need to take extra special care with them.

Here are our top 10 essential oils for kids!

These essential oils for kids are gentle yet effective, even in small amounts. And kids tend to love how they smell!

black spruce oil1. Black Spruce Oil (Picea mariana)

Black spruce oil contains a-pinene, a natural purifying component. It’s also rich in bornyl acetate, which is relaxing. Use black spruce to calm kids down while boosting their immune health.

Black spruce oil shines in the Exotic Immune Support Lotion.

cedarwood atlas oil2. Cedarwood Atlas Oil (Cedrus atlantica)

Full of soothing sesquiterpenes, cedarwood atlas has a familiar, fresh, soft woody smell that can help kids feel safe and secure. It’s also excellent for clearing their breath during cold and allergy seasons.

Use cedarwood atlas oil in the Kids Sweet Dreams Diffuser Blend.

roman chamomile oil3. Chamomile (Roman) Oil (Chamaemelum nobile)

Children tend to love the floral, warm-apple smell of Roman chamomile! It helps calm anxious feelings. It’s also rich in esters, which can soothe achy bellies. Add a few drops to jojoba and massage kids’ tummies to ease spasms.

Chamomile (Roman) has a soothing presence in Rumbly Belly Relief Lotion.

frankincense oil4. Frankincense Oil (Boswellia carterii)

Frankincense’s unmistakable aroma helps children center their minds and emotions (not easy when you’re a small person with big feelings!) It’s rich in α-pinene, meaning it supports clear breathing as well as emotional security.

Try frankincense in the Kids Smile Inhaler.

juniper berry oil5. Juniper Berry Oil (Juniperus communis)

Fresh, woodsy juniper berry oil has an invigorating hint of spice in its scent. Like several others in this list, it’s rich in α-pinene. Use juniper berry to support kids’ immune strength and encourage healthy breathing.

Juniper berry blends with foresty oils in the Cold & Cough Buster Diffuser Blend.

lavender oil6. Lavender Oil (Lavandula angustifolia)

A classic oil with a soft floral aroma that makes children smile! Lavender contains linalool and linalyl acetate. It’s gentle, yet powerful enough to instill relaxation, ease nerves, and soothe sensitive, irritated skin.

Use lavender oil in the Back to School Calming Inhaler.

Lime oil7. Lime Oil (Citrus aurantifolia)

Bright, citrusy lime oil smells just like a piece of bright green lime candy! It contains d-limonene, which has been shown to boost the mood. d-Limonene also soothes sore, achy issues (including tummy aches)!

Lime adds its bright, cheery scent to the Muscle Strains Oil.

*Safety Note:

Lime essential oil that’s been produced by cold pressing is phototoxic. This means it can cause negative skin reactions if it’s applied to the skin, and that skin is then exposed to sunlight (or a tanning bed).

Learn which other essential oils are phototoxic.

However, DISTILLED lime essential oil is NOT phototoxic. All of our lime oil here at Aromatics has been produced by steam distillation, so you don’t have to worry about phototoxicity when using it (for adults or kids).

If your lime oil is supplied by another company, please make sure you know how it was produced! Check their website or email their team for the information.

Keep learning!
Learn more about kids’ essential oil safety issues! Read our blog: Essential oils and kids: what you need to know!

Orange (Sweet) Oil8. Orange (Sweet) Oil (Citrus sinensis)

Just like lime, orange (sweet) oil is rich in d-limonene. Kids love its familiar, fruity scent, and it helps them stay smiling even during emotionally difficult days. Depending on how it’s used, orange (sweet) can calm kids down or perk up their energy.

Use Orange (Sweet) Oil in the Energizing Citrus Diffuser Blend.

Sandalwood oil9. Sandalwood Oil (Santalum album)

Soft, sweet, and woody, sandalwood contains soothing sesquiterpenols that can ease anxious feelings, support restful sleep, and calm spasms. Try adding a few drops to lotion when kids are coughing at night!

Diffuse Sandalwood Oil in the Cold & Kids Cold & Flu Diffuser Blend.

tea tree oil10. Tea Tree Oil (Melaleuca alternifolia)

A famous purifying oil, tea tree is brimming with terpinen-4-ol—a molecule proven to reduce the presence of harmful microbes. It’s gentle enough for little itchy feet and toes, and strong enough to clean surfaces that kids touch a lot.

Tea tree has a purifying effect in the Kids Go Away Dirt Hand Gel.

These essential oils for kids are useful year round!

But kids may need extra support during specific times, such as when school starts back up in the fall. During that time, children deal with big adjustments to their schedules, new environments, additional responsibilities, and more.

Learn 5 Ways essential oils help kids adjust to back to school

Questions about using essential oils for kids? Ask in the comments! We’re here to help you use essential oils safely and effectively for your whole family.


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Astani A, Reichling J, Schnitzler P (2010) Comparative study on the antiviral activity of selected monoterpenes derived from essential oils. Phytotherapy Research 24(5):673-9. doi: 10.1002/ptr.2955

Buchbauer, G., Jirovetz, L., Jager, W., Plank, C. and Dietrich, H. (1993) Fragrance compounds and essential oils with sedative effects upon inhalation. Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 82, 6, 660-664.

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Enshaieh, S., Jooya, A., Siadat, A.H. and Iraji, F. (2007) The efficacy of 5% topical tea tree oil gel in mild to moderate acne vulgaris: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy 73, 1, 22-25

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Hirota, R., Roger, N.N., Nakamura, H., Song, H.-S., Sawamura, M., and Suganuma, N. (2010) Anti-inflammatory effects of limonene from yuzu (Citrus junos Tanaka) essential oil on eosinophils. Journal of Food Science 75, 87-92.

Matsubara E, Fukagawa M, Okamoto T, Ohnuki K, Shimizu K, Kondo R. (2011) (-)-Bornyl acetate induces autonomic relaxation and reduces arousal level after visual display terminal work without any influences of task performance in low-dose condition. Biomedical Research 32, 151-157

Moss, M., Howarth, R., Wilkinson, L. and Wesnes, K. (2006) Expectancy and the aroma of Roman chamomile influence mood and cognition in healthy volunteers. International Journal of Aromatherapy 16, 2, 63-73

Sadraei H, Asghari GR, Hajhashemi V et al. (2001) Spasmolytic activity of essential oil and various extracts of Ferula gummosa Boiss. on ileum contractions. Phytomedicine 8,370-376.

Woelk, H. and Schläfke, S. (2010) A multi-center, double-blind, randomised study of the Lavender oil preparation Silexan in comparison to Lorazepam for generalized anxiety disorder. Phytomedicine 17, 2, 94-99

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