Should You Use Essential Oils During Pregnancy?

By: Chris Freytag, CPT // April 27, 2016

Expecting a baby is one of the most joyous moments in life, but we can think of a few aspects of pregnancy that aren’t so joyous—yes, we’re looking at you, morning sickness, fatigue, and stretch marks. While pretty much everyone from your neighbor to your mother to your best friend will be ready and willing to give you their advice, let us chime in with one natural wellness option that might benefit you: prenatal essential oils.

There are a lot of different opinions about whether or not essential oils should be used during pregnancy. Many medical resources (like WebMD) outline that there are a few essential oils to avoid when pregnant, mainly because the oils are extremely concentrated. This doesn’t mean, for example, that since you should avoid basil essential oils or that you need to stop cooking with basil. It just means there are certain oils that may be too concentrated for your pregnancy.

Also, there are certain essential oils that are safe, but generally should only be used in your second and third trimester. At the end of the day, though, everyone is different. You should always consult with your doctor about what’s best for your individual body! On that note, there are certain essential oils that have been found to alleviate common prenatal symptoms—and we’re all about natural options for treating symptoms like nausea, headaches, and fatigue. So let’s get to it! Here’s how to use essential oils during pregnancy for natural relief of morning sickness and more.


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    How To Use Essential Oils During Pregnancy

    When considering using prenatal essential oils, it’s generally agreed upon that you should avoid the use of any essential oils during your first trimester. It is also important to pay attention to what brands of essential oils you buy as many are not suitable to be taken internally. Young Living and DoTerra are a couple popular and reputable brands that can be used internally. After the first trimester, here are the general guidelines for which oils to avoid and which are considered safe for prenatal use:

    AVOID the following oils when pregnant:

    • Rosemary
    • Fennel
    • Clary Sage
    • Juniper
    • Basil
    • Wintergreen
    • Jasmine
    • Sage

    USE the following oils when pregnant—generally considered safe for your second and third trimesters.

    • Citrus oils like neroli, lemon, or grapefruit
    • Lavendar
    • Chamomile
    • Bergamot
    • Frankincense
    • Peppermint
    • Ylang ylang
    • Eucalyptus

    Related: 37 Surprising Uses For Essential Oils

    A Quick Note On Carrier Oils

    When you read essential oil recipes, you’ll often see instructions to dilute a few drops of the essential oil with a “carrier” oil. These oils include coconut oil, almond oil, or olive oil. You can combine a teaspoon of the carrier oil with a few drops of the essential oil so that it is more diluted or milder, for your pregnancy. This also comes in hand when using essential oils in moisturizers—for example, for stretch marks you can combine lavender with coconut oil to make a natural stretch mark remedy.

    As always, know your body and what works for you—and if you have any specific medical concerns, address them with your doctor. Here are a few of our favorite essential oil remedies for treating those not-so-pleasant pregnancy symptoms. Give one a try to find natural relief from some of those more uncomfortable symptoms of pregnancy today.

    Essential Oil Remedies For Common Pregnancy Symptoms

    Morning Sickness

    Peppermint: Take a whiff or swallow a drop of peppermint to combat nausea or morning sickness.


    Lemon: add a drop or two into water or take a whiff to feel refreshed and more alert.

    Stretch Marks

    Frankincense: Add 1-2 drops of frankincense to coconut oil or cocoa butter and use as a moisturizer to prevent stretch marks.


    Peppermint: Combine 1-2 drops of peppermint oil with almond or coconut oil and massage along your forehead to relieve tension headaches.

    Mood Swings

    Lavender: Simply take a whiff of lavender or combine a few drops of lavender with your favorite carrier oil like coconut oil or olive oil.


    Lavender: Add a few drops of lavender to an aromatherapy diffuser during the night to help you sleep.

    Aches and Pains

    Frankincense: Combine 1-2 drops of frankincense to coconut oil and massage over achy joints.

    Learn which essential oils are harmful for pregnancy.

    READ THIS NEXT: Prenatal Yoga Flow Workout

    Lifestyle, Pregnancy

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    on Reply

    You're telling people to consume essential oils while not even explaining that some essential oil brand should never be taken internally. That can be very dangerous. Especially while pregnant. Doterra and young living are the only ones I'd even reccomend taking internally. Plant therapy oils reccomend not using any essential oil internally because of how concentrated they are. Please be careful when telling pregnant women to consume essential oils without properly explaining that not every oil is equal in quality.

      on Reply

      Hi Dani - sorry that wasn't clear enough! We agree with you and have always used DoTerra and Young Living for these purposes. I added a note in the blog post to make sure it's clear. Thanks!

    (This will help us personalize your experience so that you can get the best advice possible from us!)
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