“The basics, like lavender, peppermint, and grapefruit, are all excellent in the shower,” explains Villafranco. For their sensorial appeal, sure, but also because of their aromatherapy benefits: Lavender is great for promoting sleep and managing stress; peppermint can help increase alertness (for those of you partial to a morning rinse); and citrus oils, like grapefruit, have antimicrobial properties that can manage airborne germs.
For more specific shower bliss, Villafranco has her own favorites: “If I’m tired, I like black spruce,” she says (it has an invigorating scent). “For a headache, I love to use basil.” And let’s not forget about eucalyptus; along with its refreshing, spa-like aroma, the essential oil has promising anti-inflammatory and antifungal benefits—it may even ease sore throats and coughs.
Feel free to test and see what’s best for you; of course, what works for you might not work for everyone. And if you do have any underlying health conditions (like asthma, heart disease, or seizure disorders, Villafranco mentions), you should chat with your doctor or a professional aromatherapist before incorporating any essential oils into your shower routine.