6 Essential Oils to Use During Labor |

6 Essential Oils to Use During Labor

virginia February 25, 2016

6 Essential Oils to Use During Labor

by Virginia George, Contributing Writer

Labor is a powerfully intense time, and it is different for every woman and every birth. I remember approaching each and every birth (4 of them) with apprehension because I didn’t labor in a predictable pattern, and even in my 4th labor I didn’t know exactly what to expect.

The beauty of essential oils is they can help us to cope with our fears and bring emotional as well as physical support during this life altering experience. Before we jump into which oils to use, a few words on safety.

Essential Oil Safety During Labor

There is always a lot of dissension among aromatherapists about the proper dilution and usage of essential oils. In my opinion, essential oils should only be used aromatically and topically during pregnancy and labor, unless you’re under the care of a practitioner who knows a lot more than I do. When using essential oils topically, be sure to dilute them in a carrier oil. Learn about carrier oils here.

I typically dilute my essential oils to no higher than 10% for adults. When you are pregnant and in labor, I would recommend diluting much further and starting from there. Dilute down to 1% or 2% and see if it’s effective. If not, you can always add another couple drops of oil.

How do you know how much to dilute your essential oils? | Virginia George at Modern Alternative Pregnancy

And as always, know your source. Not all essential oils are created equal, and some are in fact, not essential oils at all. Find a company you can trust; there are a lot of them out there. Feel free to contact me if you’d like to know which oils I use. In the end there are a lot of solid brands out there, you just have to find them.

Essential Oils to Use in Labor

There are a variety of oils that you can use during labor. You don’t need them all, and you may find that the smell of some is less than appealing to you. The beauty of essential oils is that they’re versatile, and it’s likely that if you can’t stand the smell of one, there’s another out there to support the same thing that you can tolerate.

Some essential oils are used for their emotional effect on the body, while others provide great emotional support. Here is a partial list of essential oils people have found helpful during labor.


Basil essential oil promotes alertness and can help ease anxious feelings, while also encouraging focus; all things important during labor! You can use basil essential oil diluted in a carrier oil for back and belly massages.

Black Pepper

Black pepper essential oil is also a great oil to use for easing anxious feelings and to encourage alertness and focus. Black pepper supports healthy circulation and can be used with a carrier oil for back and belly massages during labor. You can also diffuse it to get the mood supporting benefit of black pepper essential oil.

Clary Sage

Clary sage essential oil is contraindicated during pregnancy as it can encourage contractions (which isn’t a good idea until you’re in labor, or at least to term).

Interestingly, clary sage is great for relieving muscular tension, which seems contradictory for encouraging contractions. During labor, clary sage can be used in a massage blend or bath to support labor. Start slowly (and dilute!) with clary sage and discontinue use if contractions become more difficult to work through.

6 Essential Oils to Use During Labor pinterest


Orange essential oil is a favorite around these parts, partly because it smells amazing. Additionally, orange essential oil is energizing. Use orange oil in a diffuser when you’re getting tired and need an emotional pick-me-up!


Peppermint essential oil can be used during labor to ease nausea. Peppermint also supports focus, is energizing, and can be used in a compress to cool the body when overheated.

Peppermint essential oil should be used with caution toward the end of pregnancy and in labor because for some women it decreases their milk supply.

Ylang Ylang

Ylang ylang essential oil is another powerhouse to use during labor. Emotionally, ylang ylang promotes a positive outlook, and is calming and uplifting. Physically, ylang ylang can be used in a carrier oil for massage to reduce feelings of stress.

That’s a lot of choices, and if you search on the internet you’ll likely find a dozen more. You don’t need to use them all or have them all on hand. Choose the ones you have or the ones you will have the most use for after labor.

Have You Had Success Using Essential Oils During Your Labor? Which Oils Would You Like to Try?

This is the writings of:

Virginia is a firefighter wife and mother of 4. She loves Jesus, coffee, dark chocolate, essential oils, and inspiring women to love the Lord and themselves. Find her on her blog, Periscope, Instagram, and Facebook for encouragement in faith, motherhood, mental, and natural health.
  1. […] can find more information about using essential oils during pregnancy, labor, and with newborns right here on MAP! Check out my other essential oils posts […]


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Hi, I’m Kate.  I love medical freedom, sharing natural remedies, developing real food recipes, and gentle parenting. My goal is to teach you how to live your life free from Big Pharma, Big Food, and Big Government by learning about herbs, cooking, and sustainable practices.

I’m the author of Natural Remedies for Kids and the owner and lead herbalist at EarthleyI hope you’ll join me on the journey to a free and healthy life!

Meet My Family
Love our content? Sign up for our weekly newsletter and get our FREE Nourished Living Cookbook!