In all of the years I have practiced the craft, I have only rarely used the beneficial properties of essential oils for the purposes of magick. Not because I haven’t been interested in them, but because I have always been more interested in herbs and used them in place of where essential oils could be used. When I was about 21 yrs old I became very interested in essential oils and bought several from Aura Cacia, but found that I very rarely used them for magickal purposes. More often than not, I used them in my bath or in potpourri blends as an air freshener. Since then, I’ve not purchased many oils at all (unless you count my extensive fragrance oil collection from Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab).
I wanted to explore what makes an essential oil, ‘essential’, what makes them appropriate for magickal purposes and what magickal properties many of the most popular ones imbue.
Essential oils are composed of the concentrated liquid that contains the volatile aromatic essence of a plant. It must be ‘volatile’ in order for our olfactory senses to register the scent. The most common way to extract essential oils is through the process of distillation. This process consists of taking the raw plant (leaves, bark, flowers, wood, seeds or peel) and placing them in the distillation apparatus suspended over water. The water is then heated, steam passes through the plant material vaporizing the volatile compounds. The vapors flow through a coil, where they condense back to liquid and is then collected in a separate vessel. The liquid that is collected is the essential oils of the plant. Since extracting essential oils requires distillation, many of them require a large amount of plant material in order to even fill a small 5ml vial and thus are a bit expensive. The one that comes to mind automatically is rose. Due to the labor-intensive production process and the low content of oil in the rose blooms, rose oil commands a very high price. The flowers are harvested by hand in the morning before sunrise and material is distilled the same day.
- Steam distillation, which produces an oil called rose otto or attar of roses.
- Solvent extraction, which results in an oil called rose absolute.
- Supercritical carbon dioxide extraction, yielding an essential oil that may be marketed as either an absolute or as a CO2extract.
It takes approximately 60,000 roses to produce just 1 oz of Rose Otto. That’s about two & half dozen roses to make one drop.
Of course, not every essential oil requires so much of a plant, many of them are reasonably priced. All of them can add a special boost to whatever magick you’re working on. Obviously if you’re going to work on spells related to love, rose otto would be complimentary, but it’s only one of several essential oils that can enhance spells that deal with matters of the heart.
So why should you consider essential oils for spellcrafting?
The same reason you would consider using herbs. Working with natural elements can bolster any magickal work because of the inherent properties of the plant you’re using. Like each herb has a magickal property, so do essential oils. After all, they are derived from herbs, fruits & plants. The only difference is that they are the concentrated form. This means that you can use much less to achieve the same goal. Not to mention, they take up way less space! (Always a plus for the witch with limited storage space)
Some ways you might consider using essential oils in magick:
- Single note focused spells
- Blended oil spells to address multiple issues
- To boost the potency of incense blends
- When crafting candles for ritual use
- To bless or consecrate tools
- Anointing circle mates as they enter circle
- To wear as a reminder of spell intent
Inhale this spicy scent to clear your mind, refresh your mental connections and reduce mental fatigue.
This wondrous scent is also great to sniff when you want to uplift your mood. Simply inhale and imagine happy times – your mood will follow.
To increase business success – place a few drops in a diffuser or in the money drawer.
To attract more money – inhale while you imagine your pockets bursting with cash, you writing checks with ease to pay your bills and you living a stress free life.
NOTE: This oil can be very irritating to the skin, do not apply directly. PLUS – can be toxic if ingested.
For psychic awareness, put a few drops on a cotton ball. Sit comfortably in a chair or on the ground. Relax your body and push the busyness from your mind.
Inhale the scent. Visualize your conscious mind letting go of your psychic mind. Allow the odor to engulf your mind and body.
Once you’ve made a connection between the two halves of your mind, discover what you need to know.
Inhale this warm, vanilla-like scent to give your physical body an extra boost during times of exertion or when you need a few extra moments of energy.
By sniffing this scent, you will also produce a larger reserve of magical power since increasing your physical energy automatically produce this result.
The scent of benzoin also stimulates the conscious mind.
This oil soothes frazzled nerves and over stressed bodies. It is uplifting to our inner self or soul.
Inhale the oil, with or without visualization, to relieve depression and the tension of every day life.
At night, inhale the scent to produce a restful, relaxing sleep.
Sniff this powerful scent for when you need to sharpen your mental faculties and energize the body. It is also beneficial when you need to stay awake – especially when driving.
For protection – place two drops of oil onto a cotton ball. Strongly visualize a psychic force surrounding you so powerful (like a mini tornado), that it knocks away all incoming negative energy. Merge and solidify this scent and visualization into your conscious mind for 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat once a day for a week. When danger threatens – recall the scent and the visualization.
Inhale this luxurious scent to increase your sexual appetite.
For love – inhale and visualize yourself in a mutually beneficial relationship. It’s important to create this image in your conscious mind to allow cardamom to stir your unique energies. After you inhale – put the thoughts aside to allow your charged power to go out and do its work.
Let cardamom’s spicy scent clear your conscious mind to new heights in unexpected ways.
This wonderful woody scent is excellent to promote spirituality. Inhale the soothing aroma before any religious rituals to strengthen your connection with the Divine.
You may also inhale the scent to bring yourself into balance. Smell the fragrance and visualize yourself as centered, calm and in control of your life.
At night, take a few deep whiffs to induce sleep.
During the day, smell to promote peace and to remove the effects of stress and tension.
For meditation – if you have trouble slipping into the proper state, smell chamomile to reduce tension and facilitate meditation.
Inhale the warm, sweet and spicy scent with the imaginative view that you have a strengthen physical body.
You may also inhale, with the proper focus and visualization, to tap into your psychic mind.
This same scent can be inhaled to increase your financial base or you can dress a green candle and burn it for the same results.
NOTE: This oil can be very irritating to the skin, do not apply directly.
Inhale the oil to find strength and comfort through transitions of all kinds – especially through the loss of friends, loved ones or the endings of relationships.
Place a few drops on the bedding of your dog to “banish” the fleas (never add the undiluted oil directly to their skin).
Inhale the fresh, healthful-like scent to maintain or regain your health.
Add a few drops to a diffuser or potpourri simmer to purify – heal – a room or house of negative psychic energy, particularly when people have been engaged in emotional, physical or mental abuse.
You can also smell the crushed fresh leaves or fresh seed pods to induce health and to speed the healing process. A vase of leaves is helpful in a sickroom.
Inhale to achieve a heightened sense of awareness of the spiritual realms or to deepen any religious experience.
The aroma also helps to reduce stress and tension by pointing out that our lives revolve on many realms – not just the physical.
The scent also calms the physical form and awaken the higher conscious. Use before meditation.
**Word of caution – placing undiluted Frankincense directly on your skin can cause irritation**
To inhale this scent is said to increase one’s lifespan.
In order to get a boast of courage, smell the oil and imagination yourself having that courage already.
For purification, whiff the scent as you imagine your inner self being purified.
Inhale this light, sweet scent while imagining yourself in a loving relationship. Let the scent mix with your own energies, and allow a transformation to occur in you that will have you be a person who is willing to become involved in a satisfying relationship.
This wonderful energy transforms doubts about the possibility of love into positive, life attracting energies.
If tense, sniff the fragrance and allow the knots in your body and the frazzle in your mental state to unwind.
(AKA Rose Geranium)
Place a few drops on a cotton ball and inhale when you are weak and most likely to get ill. As you inhale the aroma, visualize peace spreading through your body as it dissolves depression and uplifts your world weary soul.
To help gain control over your own life and/or to guard your home against outside negativity – place a few drops in a diffuser to allow the scent to spread throughout your home.
Inhale before magical rituals of any kind while you visualize the scent stimulating your physical body, to excite muscular contraction which will produce bioelectrical energy.
Inhale and visualize to promote courage, confidence, aggression (needed for self-survival), purification and success on all levels.
Because of its vibrate scent – it is best not to inhale before you go to bed, that is unless you plan on being up most of the night!
To help you lose weight – sit back and imagine the way you will look after you lose the weight. Intensify your imagination while you inhale the sweetness of this oil.
Whenever you feel the urge to cheat on your diet or to ignore your exercise routine, once again inhale the scent with proper imagining.
You may also sniff this fine scent to strengthen your psychic awareness. Sit quietly and allow the scent to lull your conscious mind into letting go of your psychic mind.
If you are battling grief, inhale the aroma as you imagine yourself as a poised and confident person. Do this 3x a day until the grief has dissipated.
Can be used in spells & sachets to draw love to you.
Use the scent to ward off nightmares. Drop off to sleep smelling the aroma and no bizarre dreams should disturb your rest.
Hyssop is deemed to be scared to the gods and goddess of ancient Greece.
Inhale the sharp scent for purification. Or, place a few drops in a bowl of water and leave it in the home to purify the surroundings.
Sniff to heighten your spirituality prior to all religious rituals or ceremonies.
You can inhale to clear your head and strengthen the mental process.
With visualization, use in love rituals, either by inhaling or by anointing candles to enhance a current relationship or to draw one to you.
Simply inhale the soothing scent to lift your spirits, remove depression, still nerves and silence worries.
To induce sexual desire in both yourself and/ or your partner, inhale the aroma with visualization to stimulate the mental, emotional and physical responses needed to have a fulfilling sexual experience.
The uses for Jasmine far outweigh the heavy price tag for pure essential oil.
Inhale and visualize to detoxify the body and for internal purification. The scent can also be used for helping you to eat correctly, exercise and think positive.
Place in a diffuser, to purify your home and to protect it from negativity.
For individual protection – inhale and visualize its energies guarding you from danger and negativity.
Take a lavender bath once a week to induce health maintenance – add nine drops to your bath water while you visualize good heath.
Lavender is associated with spiritual love as its power seems to lie in that it can reprogram our conscious mind on the way we think about love via our chakras. Inhaling this scent with proper visualization lets you send out signals to others on your need for love.
Inhale to induce peace and put depression at bay. It also calms stormy or uncontrolled emotions by centering and controlling our conscious mind with a shot of reality.
Rub on the temples to rid yourself of a headache.
Inhale this uplifting scent to activate the body and dispel sluggishness. Smell first thing when you awaken as an aromatic substitute for a cup of coffee.
Inhale to maintain health as an add on to conventional medical treatment. Visualize its energies strengthening your body as well as your mind. For an illness – feel the fragrance fighting off the infection. For a wound – visualize the scent encouraging cell growth and the resultant healing.
Drop a few drops into a diffuser to fill your home with vibrant and pure energy.
Inhale straight from the vial, or place a few drops on a cotton ball to help relieve depression and calm raging emotions.
Most money problems are the direct result of our own poor decisions. Keep this in mind as you inhale the scent while visualizing yourself allowing money back into your life. This works by removing the blockages we either consciously or unconsciously set up in our mind and energy field.
Use this crisp and clean scent during a weekly personal purification ritual.
Inhale this intense lemon scent, combined with your imagination, to stimulate your psychic awareness.
Use for personal purification rituals or spells, but be careful if you intend to apply this oil directly to your skin as it can be irritating if not diluted first.
To heal from a broken heart – inhale the scent while imagining yourself as a happy, well-adjusted person who can get along just fine in life without your ex partner.
Place a few drops ion a diffuser to invite peace into your space.
To connect to the Goddess within and above – sniff the aroma while seeing the feminine part of you come alive, active and allowing you to take control of your life.
Inhale this full-bodied, sharp scent to energize and revitalize the body.
Place a few drops in an diffuser for all-over home purification.
Dap a few drops on your body while imagining a wall of safety around you for personal protection.
The aroma of marjoram causes a relaxed state – just as if you had taken a sedative. It’s useful to help with anxiety, grief, love (obsession) and any heart wrenching emotional reaction.
Marjoram can help lull you into a restful sleep. Inhale straight from the vial or place some drops into a diffuser.
Inhale a small bit of marjoram before you start a ritual. It helps to connect the conscious and psychic minds.
Self-purification: Inhale while you visualize the scent burning away negative thought patterns, harmful habits and other misuses of your energy and mind.
Joy: Simply sniff the scent to lift up your spirits and temporarily settle emotions.
Sex: Inhale while you visualize your physical, emotional, spiritual, mental and psychic connection with the person you will be intimate with. Not an aphrodisiac, but calms the conscious mind and smoothes the path to mutual satisfaction.
Inhale this warm and stimulating scent prior to any magical activity that requires a tremendous release of bioelectrical energy. Visulaize the scent mingling and enticing your own preparation for the magical act at hand.
Smell and visualize money coming into your life. Or tap into the scent to tap into your psychic mind.
*NOTE: Nutmeg can be toxic in large quantities. Do not inhale for long periods of time, or add to bathwater.
Add a few drops of this oil to a sexual inducing blend to give it an earthy scent.
Inhale the scent, with the use of your imagination, to increase cash flow and to expand upon personal prosperity. As you smell the scent, imagine yourself with the extra cash and/or more prosperity. See the image – feel the emotions, live the moment.
The oil, as well as the herb, seems to be soaked with money energy.
With proper visualization: Whiff from the bottle, place a few drops on a cotton ball or in a diffuser for self-purification, for transforming depression into peace – even happiness – and to produce an increase in bioelectrical energy for both physical and magical tasks.
Too much orange oil can cause an overwhelming desire to sleep.
Inhale during love-attracting spells while you visualize the outcome you desire. Make sure you focus your intent and remember to bring no harm to none.
This oil also speeds healing when used with visualization and of course, proper medical treatment. Smell the scent at least once a day while you visualize your body in a healthy, healed and whole state.
If suffering from gout, rub pennyroyal on the affected areas 3x daily.
Mix with wormwood oil and inhale the combination to prevent seasickness during travel.
Sniff pennyroyal to clear the cobwebs from the conscious mind as well as strengthen it and to still dizziness.
Take a whiff or two of the oil for protective purposes. As you inhale – imagine yourself being protective from what worries you.
Breathe in the vibrant scent to awaken your conscious mind and/or to halt negative thoughts.
Inhale as you imagine in your mind’s eye for self-purification or place drops in a diffuser for all-over home purification.
Do not use before bedtime unless you prefer not to sleep!
Pine is a wonderful aroma that can speed the healing of your physical body. Inhale in conjunction with treatment or place a few drops in the sickroom.
For purification, especially during the winter months, inhale and enjoy. Better yet, grab some pine needles – crush – and enjoy the fresh and vibrant scent.
Inhale the scent as you visualize money being drawn to you. See – feel – hear what having the money can do for you and release those thoughts into the Universe.
To stamp out fear and depression – inhale this sweet, lemony scent as you imagine yourself with a peaceful attitude.
Place a few drops in a diffuser or in a spray bottle w/spring water and spritz rooms to manifest loving relationships.
Put a few drops in a diffuser to spread loving energy throughout your home. The scent will calm domestic problems and instill peace and happiness.
Inhaling the scent is helpful to the psychological impotence in men and may increase sperm count.
Inhale the scent and visualize its energies leading you into a mutually satisfying emotional relationship.
Smell the scent while you visualize a long, healthy life.
When you need to clear your conscious mind – inhale the scent.
Place a few drops on a cotton ball and keep it next to you when you are studying and have to memorize the material – sniff often. When you need to recall, smell the oil again and the information will make itself available.
This somewhat foul smelling scent has been used for centuries to calm raging emotions such as: jealously, depression, love-obsession, anger, hatred, bigotry and frustration.
This scent can also ease the pain of broken relationships and ease the sting of unrequited love. Take a whiff of the oil and push the thoughts from your mind.
If you receive too much psychic information or feel that a hex has been placed on you – smell rue and it will shut down the psychic receptors and push away any hex.
Sniff rue once a day to maintain good health.
**Pregnant women SHOULD NOT use this oil or herb**
Smell its powerful aroma in the morning to kickstart your body and energize your soul. It’s a wonderful pick-me-up for the day’s activities.
With the proper imagining of prosperity and abundance, sniff the scent and let what you desire be drawn to you.
Dap some of the oil on our neck and wrists prior to magic and let its energies give you a power boast in manifestation.
Place a few drops in a diffuser for all over home purification. Add a couple of drops to boiling water and pass stones/crystals through the stream for cleansing and purification.
For prosperity manifestation, inhale the scent while you imagine what money can bring you in your life. Do not imagine money – rather what it can pay off and what items it can bring to you – make sure you feel the emotions associated with this.
Place a few drops on a cotton ball and inhale prior to taking a test or some other mind bender. This same wondrous scent can also be inhaled prior to studying for accelerated retention.
Inhale the fragrance before a religious ritual and/or meditation to create the proper mood.
With proper visualization, the scent of sandalwood can be used to stimulate sexual activity. In cases of emotional or mental sexual dysfunction, this aroma can effect a cure.
To speed healing, add a few drops to your bath water and visualize its aroma and energies doing their work.
Inhale the fresh scent of spearmint and couple it with your imagination of a fit/healthy body in order to speed up the healing process.
Take in the scent as you fall asleep and imagine it wrapping you with protective energy.
It is also helpful and refreshing to the bereaved.
This essential oil is excellent for heightening psychic awareness and/or waking your dormant psychic abilities.
Before you do a reading, cast a spell or dispense healing, inhale this licorice scent while you quiet your mind.
Allow the energy of the star anise to enter your conscious mind, soothing it, to awaken your sleeping psychic abilities.
This oil can bring forth an explosive amount of psychic awareness which can lead to headaches and increased dreaming.
Use it with care.
To instill courage – inhale thyme as you imagine yourself full of courage and being able to face the situation or person without fear.
Place a few drops in a diffuser to ensure that your household is full of energy to revitalize health.
To stimulate the conscious mind, inhale the sharp scent. But be warned that it has been known to prevent sleep, so make sure that you use it at least 3 hours or more before bedtime.
Note: Thyme can be toxic – pregnant women should avoid this oil.
Inhaling the warm aroma of vanilla will produce a sexual arousal when accompanied by proper imagination/visualization. In a broader sense, this wonderful aroma can be sniffed to manifest a loving sexual relationship. It appeals to both men and women.
This scent produces bioelectrical energy which can be channeled into physical exertion or magical rituals. Sniff prior to making the extra effort.
For personal protection, inhale the aroma while visualizing a protective field sealing you from negative energies. For your home, place a few drops in a diffuser or potpourri simmerer and visulaize.
This scent is great for the manifestation of increased money in your life. Simply visualize this needed change as you inhale this rich scent. Use it to anoint candles, money or charms for the same outcome.
To hone in on your psychic awareness, sniff this full-bodied scent while you imagine your conscious mind quieting down. This allows psychic communication to take place without hesitation.
Inhale the scent while you imagine yourself filling up with courage. Then go face your daunting situation.
Yarrow magnifies love of self and others so it is great to use in love-attracting spells.
Wear or inhale it’s soothing scent prior to anything nerve-wracking like job interviews or public speaking.
Ylang – ylang also helps to calm anger and all negative emotional states, transforming such blackness into positive, white light manifestation.
Inhale the scent or apply it to your wrist, ankles & temples to create sexual desire. It’s a wonderful oil to help one overcome sexual problems.
You can also use this scent to attract love!
This, of course, is not the definitive list, but just an example of some revised info that I’ve complied (courtesy of Allie Theiss). You may find that some of these oils can be used for other purposes and that’s great. Use them as you see fit. As soon as finances allow, I intend to start purchasing essential oils for the purpose of using them in magickal work. Currently I only have lavender & eucalyptus. I purchased them years ago for help with insomnia & decongestion purposes, however, I’ve also used the lavender in spellcasting.
Which essential oils do you think every witch should have on hand? What ways have you used essential oils in your practice? Do you have favorites that you find yourself using often?
Cautionary disclaimer: Essential oils are concentrated and should not be applied directly to the skin in their undiluted form. Some can cause severe irritation, provoke an allergic reaction and, over time, prove hepatotoxic. They must be diluted with passive carrier oils before topical application. Water cannot be used in this case as all essential oils are not miscible with water. Essential oils should not be used with animals, as they possess extreme hepatotoxicity and dermal toxicity for animals, especially for cats. Instead, essential oils should be blended with a vegetable-based carrier oil (as a base, or “fixed” oil) before being applied. Common carrier oils include olive, almond, hazelnut and grapeseed. Ingestion is NOT advised. Please use caution and common sense when using essential oils at all times. If you are pregnant or nursing, use of essential oils is not recommended.