Inhalation Use up to 8 drops on a tissue or handkerchief for inhalation throughout the day (or onto a pillow for night use). For respiratory complaints, make a steam inhalation by adding about 5 drops of lavender to a bowl of steaming water. Cover your head with a towel and breathe deeply for about 5-10 minutes with your eyes closed.
Before being applied to the skin for massage purposes, lavender (like other essential oils) should always be mixed with a light vegetable oil carrier or base such as sweet almond oil, jojoba or grapeseed – although sunflower or soya oil would also suffice. Jojoba oil, being a liquid wax, does not go rancid – otherwise a little wheatgerm oil should be added to the blend to prolong its shelf life. The dilution should be in the region of 2-3 per cent – though sometimes 5 per cent may be used for a
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concentrated effect, as in the case of local muscular pain, for example.
A rough guideline is to say that 20 drops of essential oil is equivalent to one millilitre, so an easy way of calculating the proportions for general use is to measure the carrier oil in millilitres, then add about half the number of drops of essential oil to give a 2.5 per cent dilution:
Shampoo and Hair Care
Buy a good, neutral pH value shampoo and add your own lavender to it. To a 100-ml bottle add about 60 drops of lavender oil. An alcohol-based scalp rub can be made by adding 5 ml of lavender to 100 ml of vodka – this can be used to rid the hair of fleas and lice (though it should not be used on irritated skin).
For vaginal and genito-urinary infections, add 6-8 drops of lavender oil to a shallow bath or bowl of warm water and bathe the affected area.