Peppermint (Mentha x piperita)
The Ancient Greek Pliny said the very smell of Peppermint “recovers and refreshes the spirit.”
In The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, Salvatore Battaglia says Peppermint may be beneficial for people who have mental fatigue, and can help us be clear-headed.
In Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit, Gabriel Mojay says Peppermint “enhances our receptive capacities on both mental and spiritual levels.”
I’ve found all this to be true, and I bet you will, too.
In Peppermint's Essential Oil Spotlight, you'll learn how to use Peppermint for:
- Body butter
- Cooling down
- Pain relieving massage oil
- Reducing swelling
- Refreshing, cooling body spritz
Before we jump into the recipes, let's cover a few important safety notes on Peppermint:
- Based on the research, we take an extra cautious approach and do not recommend using Peppermint topically with babies or children under five years old. I wrote an article about Aromahead's approach to safely using essential oils with children, and it includes some great recipe suggestions. Feel free to email me if you want a copy. firstname.lastname@example.org
- Peppermint can be irritating if applied to the face or near the eyes.
- Wash hands well after use so you don’t accidentally touch your eyes.
- Peppermint can be quite skin irritating if used in the bathtub.
- To avoid potential irritation, always dilute Peppermint essential oil before applying it to your skin. I tend to use 5 to 6 drops per 1 oz (30 ml) of cream or carrier oil.
The recipes shared in this article are intended for adults only. However, Peppermint its best to avoid using for people who have cardiac fibrillation or a G6PD deficiency.
Cooling Peppermint Essential Oil Body Butter
Peppermint is ultra-cool, and always leaves a good impression on new friends. It loves to relieve stress and have fun, and its upbeat energy is hard to resist.
One way Peppermint keeps things "chill" is by cooling down overheated muscles.
How many times have you put a little bag full of ice on a painful, swollen area . . . or just used a bag of frozen peas?
The cold can feel so good, and it helps reduce inflammation to encourage healing.
You just have to be sure to keep that ice bag full!
If you don’t have a friend around to fetch fresh ice for you every fifteen minutes, Peppermint essential oil will be happy to fill in! (And it promises not to get you all wet with condensation.)
Peppermint is one of the best oils I know for soothing inflammation. It’s cooling, comforting, and encouraging. In this recipe, I’m using it in a body butter for painful, swollen areas.
"I'm So Cool!" Body Butter
- 3 oz (84 g) Babassu butter (Orbignya oleifera)
- 3 oz (90 ml) Trauma Oil
- 1 oz (28 g) Beeswax (Cera alba)
- 28 drops Peppermint essential oil (Mentha x piperita)
- 10 drops Lemon essential oil (Citrus limon)
- 15 drops Grapefruit essential oil (Citrus paradisi)
- 25 drops Lavender essential oil (Lavandula angustifolia)
- 28 drops Cypress essential oil (Cupressus sempervirens)
Make your blend in two 4 oz (120 ml) glass jars. The blend makes about 7 oz (210 ml).
- First, prepare yourself a “stovetop double boiler.” Put a Pyrex measuring cup in a cooking pot that’s about ¼ full of gently boiling water. Your ingredients will go in the Pyrex.
- Melt the beeswax in the Pyrex.
- Add the babassu butter. Babassu reminds me of coconut oil, since it’s a liquid or a solid depending on the temperature it’s stored at. It has so many healthy fatty acids for the skin! It also absorbs quickly.
- Add the Trauma Oil. Trauma Oil is a skin nourishing, pain reducing oil made by infusing three herbs (arnica, calendula, and St. John’s wort) in a base of carrier oil—usually that’s olive oil.
- Stir all your melted butters and carrier oils together gently with a glass stirring rod.
- Remove the Pyrex from heat and turn off the stove.
- Add your essential oils, stirring gently.
- Pour your blend into your 4 oz (120 ml) jars. Set them aside to cool for at least an hour.
You’ll be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t love Peppermint after getting to know it! I think you'll see what I mean when you try this body butter. Use it as often as you need to throughout the day to reduce swelling, cool heat, and ease pain.
"I'm in Mint Condition" Massage Oil
Peppermint essential oil has a lot of energy. That means it can help us with a lot of things . . .
headaches, sore joints and muscles, digestive issues and nausea, swelling and inflammation, respiratory issues, low energy, anxiety, helping you hang shelves . . . just kidding!
I like to use Peppermint essential oil in massage blends for muscles or joints that are a little sore (just sore enough to keep you down for the count and ruin your “hanging the shelves” day . . . so maybe Peppermint really can help with that!)
Trauma Oil is a wonderful carrier for Peppermint. We used Trauma Oil in the "I'm So Cool" Body Butter above, so you can check that recipe (step 4 in the directions) to learn what Trauma Oil is made of.
It's a fantastic choice for easing pain and calming inflammation! You can even use it all by itself and experience relief.
Together, Trauma Oil and Peppermint can have you feeling in mint condition in no time.
But let's take the pain relief even further for this blend! Let's add Rosemary and Roman Chamomile essential oils.
Rosemary has a fresh, herbaceous scent that complements Peppermint, and it helps tight muscles relax.
Roman Chamomile is one of my favorite essential oils for relaxation and calming muscle spasms.
"I'm in Mint Condition" Massage Oil
- 1 oz (30 ml) Trauma Oil
- 6 drops Peppermint essential oil (Mentha x piperita)
- 7 drops Rosemary essential oil (Rosmarinus officinalis ct. camphor)
- 5 drops Roman Chamomile essential oil (Chamaemelum nobile)
Make your blend in a 1 oz (30 ml) glass bottle. Massage sore, tight muscles, painful joints, or any achy area as needed.
Roman Chamomile has a relaxing effect on the nervous system, but Peppermint and Rosemary are more enlivening and invigorating. The overall effect of this blend is to help you feel alert and energized, with the ability to settle into what you're doing. Undistracted, focused, and upbeat!
Recharge with Peppermint Hydrosol Spritz
Peppermint has the compassionate capacity to help us release stress and recharge. So this recipe is for a refreshing hydrosol spritz that helps to open your heart and leaves you feeling ready for fun.
Not familiar with hydrosols?
They are so different from essential oils!
Learn 5 Ways to Use Hydrosols here.
Recover and Refresh Hydrosol Spritz
- 2.5 oz (75 ml) Peppermint hydrosol (Mentha x piperita)
- 1 oz (30 ml) Lemon Balm hydrosol (Melissa officinalis)
- ½ oz (15 ml) German Chamomile hydrosol (Matricaria recutita)
Make your spritz in a 4 oz (120 ml) glass spray bottle.
Keep it with you and spritz it on your neck, especially the back of your neck, whenever you feel tired or run down (physically or mentally). I love having this spray with me in hot weather.
Hydrosols offer a lot of nourishment and comfort to skin.
In addition to being cooling, this blend can soothe irritation (such as itchy or inflammed areas). Keep it with you to calm itchy bug bites, to refresh your skin after it's been exposed to sun, or to spritz on achy, overheated feet after a day of walking.
I recommend making this blend fresh every few weeks. Hydrosols are water based, and we're not using any preservatives in this blend. So we definitely want this to be fresh.
I hope these Peppermint essential oil recipes "recover and refresh" your spirit!
Peppermint is one of those essential oils that's incredibly popular . . . but Peppermint would never describe itself as "common!" It stands out from the crowd, and in Aromatherapy blends just a few drops of Peppermint go a long way. (Too many drops and Peppermint will "grab the spotlight" for itself, its aroma outshining the other oils.)
Look to this essential oil anytime you need an infusion of energy, a cool touch, or even mental focus.
Before we end this Spotlight, I want to give you one more way to use Peppermint . . .
The pure hydrosol makes an excellent mouthwash!
It freshens breath so well (no surprise there!) And if you like, you can blend 3 oz (90 ml) of Peppermint hydrosol with 1 oz (30 ml) of Frankincense hydrosol, which has a reputation for being great for oral care (teeth and gums love Frankincense!)