We\u2019ve all heard of essential oils, and how they\u2019re used in aromatherapy. These oils can also be used around the home and to help calm and relax you for better sleep, as well as to help you clean your home using natural, chemical-free products.\r\n\r\nHere we take a look at some of the best ones to use around your home, as well as discover exactly what essential oils are.\r\n\r\n\r\nWhat are Essential Oils?\r\nEssential oils are naturally found and extracted via compression, steam distillation, or a solvent process from the roots, leaves, bark, nuts, seeds, flowers, berries, and nuts of plants. Essential oils are what typically give a particular plant its distinctive smell\/aroma. These oils are commonly found in personal care and green cleaning products.\r\n\r\nThere\u2019s a difference between essential oils and fragrance oils though, as the latter are often synthetic and are therefore not eco-friendly. The essential oils you need to look for are ones that are made entirely from plants with no other ingredients added.\r\nUses in the Home\r\nTwo of the most common uses for essential oils in the home are for aromatherapy (to promote calmness, relaxation, and sleep naturally) and cleaning (to clean the home naturally).\r\n\r\n \tAromatherapy, Relaxation, and Sleep. Essential oils are aromatherapeutic, so they can affect you on both a physical and mental level. Essential oils that are used to help promote sleep are Vetiver, Valerian, Ylang Ylang, Majoram, and Cedarwood, and Roman Chamomile, to name a few.\r\n\r\nLavender is one of the most well-known essential oils for its sleep-inducing properties, and backed by some research. You can simply spray a few drops on a tissue and tuck it under a pillow, use a lavender infused pillow, or purchase lavender-infused sleep masks and\/or bed pillows.\r\n\r\n \tAn essential part of green cleaning, essential oils are a useful and natural way to destroy mildew, mold, viruses, germs, bacteria, and fungus. For this reason, they\u2019re often found in eco-friendly cleaners, disinfectants, and air fresheners, and are also often used as preservatives in said formulations.\r\n\r\nWhich Essential Oils are Good for Cleaning?\r\nYou can create your own green and safe eco-friendly cleaning products using natural and inexpensive ingredients from the store, as well as with essential oils. Not only will your home smell great, but it\u2019ll be clean too. Popular oils for cleaning purposes include:\r\n\r\n \tNot only does lavender smell amazing, but it\u2019s also an anti-bacterial insect deterrent.\r\n \tPine. Pine has a very clean scent, is deodorizing., and has disinfectant qualities.\r\n \tTea tree oil. This essential oil works very well on mildew and mold. It\u2019s also excellent for destroying musty smells.\r\n \tEucalyptus is a very good surface and air sanitizer.\r\n \tLemon removes stains, and is excellent for cleaning floors due to its antibacterial properties. Simply add a few drops to your water and mop as usual. Grapefruit and orange oil are also good for cleaning floors.\r\n \tPeppermint oil can help to repel insects and purify the air.\r\n\r\nEssential Oil Cleaning Product Recipes\r\nNow you\u2019ve read all about how great essential oils are for cleaning your home, here are a few recipes to get you started.\r\n\r\n \tToilet cleaner. Mix a cup of liquid Castile soap, a cup of water, and 20 drops of lemon essential oil in a spray bottle, and simply spray the mixture onto your toilet bowl as required.\r\n \tCarpet cleaner. Mix 20 drops of the essential oil of your choice into a cup of baking soda. After letting the mixture sit overnight, so the oil is completely absorbed by the powder, sprinkle it onto your carpets before you vacuum.\r\n \tDryer sheets. Cut up some old cotton cloths, an old tee shirt will do, and pour a mixture of seven drops of an essential oil of your choice, mixed with 110mls of vinegar on top of the fabric, until it\u2019s damp, but not soaking. Place the dampened fabric in an airtight container, and use them whenever you need to. The vinegar makes your clothes soft, and the essential oil with give them a lovely fragrance.\r\n \tInsect repellent. Take two ounces of sweet almond oil and add eight drops of cedar oil, five drops of eucalyptus, two drops of eucalyptus, two drops of lavender, and two drops of peppermint, and apply to exposed areas of your body, keeping away from your eyes.\r\n\r\nHow to use essential oils for cleaning? There are so many ways you can utilize essential oils for cleaning and freshening your home, including these simple ways to create your own eco-friendly and aromatic cleaning products.\r\n\r\n \tCleaning your bathroom. Add some drops of an oil, like tea tree, into your cleaning solution. This adds extra germ fighting power, as tea tree is considered to have insecticidal, bactericidal, antiseptic, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties.\r\n \tCleaning your kitchen. By adding a few drops of lemon essential oil into your dish soap, you can give it an extra germ-fighting kick. Lemon oil also enhances your mood, as well as having bactericidal, antimicrobial, and antiseptic features. You can also deodorize your refrigerator by adding grapefruit or lemon oil directly into your fridge\u2019s baking soda box.\r\n \tFreshening the air. Add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to your oil burner to make your home smell amazing.\r\n\r\nAre Essential Oils Safe for Cleaning?\r\nYou should never use essential oils on your body or to treat a health issue without first researching your chosen oil or seeking advice from your doctor. That said, in eco-friendly cleaning terms, essential oils are generally considered to be safer than synthetic fragrance oils.\r\n\r\nThere are certain atmospheric conditions that essential oils should not be used in, specifically on smoggy days when high levels of ozone are present. According to a recent study published in the Journal of Epidemiology, the terpenes within essential oils have the potential to interact with ozone and create formaldehyde.\r\n\r\nFor this reason, it\u2019s important never to use essential oils when levels of ozone are high, and to always use good ventilation.\u00a0 If you\u2019re concerned about the specifics of any essential oil, the International Chemical Safety Card database contains more information.\r\nHow to Choose the Right Oils\r\nNot all essential oils are created equally. The composition and quality of essential oils can vary, so it\u2019s important to look for the following when you\u2019re looking for high quality oils:\r\n\r\n \tReputation. Only buy from brands that have a good reputation in their field.\r\n \t\u00a0Purchase only oils that are extracted through mechanical cold pressing or distillation, as these will have been changed the least by the process of extraction.\r\n \t\u00a0Purchase only oils that contain no synthetic oils or additives. Good quality oils usually have the botanical name of the plant on the label. Look for certified pure therapeutic grade if possible.\r\n\r\nThe uses of essential oils are practically endless. They can be used in the form of one single essential oil or they can be blended together for desired experience and benefit. The tips above offer you plenty to get started with to enjoy the amazing benefits of essential oils.\r\nLink to Us!\r\nIf you found this article useful and shareable, please copy and paste the following into the html code of your website or blog: Learn More About Going Green at the <a href"https:\/\/www.plushbeds.com\/blog\/green\/about-essential-oils-and-their-uses-in-an-eco-friendly-home\/">PlushBeds Green Living Blog<\/a>.