At our house, lavender is a constant friend, helping to keep our home and its occupants safe, clean, and comfortable. Rich with antimicrobial essential oil, lavender helps to naturally clean and refresh the home. Lavender has a relaxing, yet refreshing action, so it is wonderful to have around the house to welcome home weary souls after a long day.
Lavender For Cleaning & Refreshing The Home
Beloved by humanity for centuries, lavender finds its roots in the Latin word lavare, which means “to wash” (Keville, 1995). And indeed lavender’s antiseptic properties come to good use in the home. Use lavender in any of these homemade spring cleaning products to bring the properties of lavender into your home, or try out the recipe below.
Lavender Infused Cleaning Solution
This recipe is my favorite all-purpose spray. I use it to clean hard surfaces, such as counters, tables, doorknobs, floors, bathrooms, and even spritz it over the couch after someone has spent a sick day cuddled up there.
2 ½ to 3 cups of white vinegar or hydrogen peroxide
1 cup lavender flowers
1 to 2 lemon rinds
20 drops of lavender essential oil, optional
- Choose either white vinegar or hydrogen peroxide for your base. Both are good for sanitizing, without using harsh chemicals. The vinegar, of course, has a strong smell which some people find off-putting. If this is you, choose peroxide instead. Keep in mind, however, that hydrogen peroxide can be a bit harsh on skin, so I advise you to wear gloves when using it.
- Place 1 cup of lavender blossoms and the lemon peels in a quart jar.
- Cover the lavender with either the vinegar or peroxide.
- Place a lid on top and give it a good shake. If you are using a metal lid, add a piece of wax paper between the lid and the infusing herbs when using vinegar to avoid corroding the metal.
- The lavender will most likely absorb some of the vinegar/hydrogen peroxide. So check back in an hour or so to see if you need to add more liquid and top it off, if necessary.
- Shake your jar regularly.
- Infuse the lavender and lemon for one week in hydrogen peroxide and up to one month in vinegar.
- Then strain the solution into a clean jar and store it in a cool, dark place.
- When you are ready to make your cleaner, mix ½ cup of hydrogen peroxide with 2 ½ cups of water, or 1 cup of vinegar with 2 cups of water.
- Add the 20 drops of lavender essential oil if you wish, and give the jar a good shake.
Sachets stuffed with lavender can gently scent clothes and linens in dressers and closets, while also deterring bugs. Tossing one of these simple sachets in the dryer is another great way to scent and refresh clothing. Keep a simple lavender aromatherapy spray (see below) on hand to refresh stale or stinky air, or to rid airborne germs when someone in the house is ill.
Lavender essential oil is one of my favorite things in my family’s first aid kit. It is incredibly useful and easy to use, making it the perfect helper when dealing with minor injuries or illness. Read about using essential oils safely here.
Lavender’s analgesic and antimicrobial properties make it a good choice for skin issues, such as burns, cuts, rashes, and insect bites. A few drops mixed with a carrier oil and added to the bath can be soothing when a large portion of the skin is irritated due to rashes, sunburns, or multiple insect bites.
Inhaling lavender essential oil can help to ease headaches, stress, and exhaustion. A few drops of the essential oil can be added to massage oil or lotion to help relax tight, sore muscles.
Emotional Support With Lavender
Calming lavender is a classic herb for helping to ease stress, anxiety, and depression. Its lovely scent simultaneously relaxes and stimulates, making it very useful for exhaustion. As a “specific for central-nervous-system problems,” the benefits of lavender makes it a useful ally for emotional support (Keville, 1995).
Help for Insomnia
Everyone experiences sleeplessness now and then. Maybe your kiddo struggles with nighttime anxieties. Or perhaps something is going on in life that is worrisome. Or it could even be an illness that makes sleeping difficult. Using lavender at bedtime can help to ease little ones (and their parents) right off to sleep. Use the room spray below at bedtime, or even as a pillow spray.
Lavender Aromatherapy Spray
Lavender essential oil
Distilled or filtered water
Bottle with spray top
- Add 5 to 6 drops of essential oil for every ounce of water to your spray bottle.
- Shake well before each use and enjoy the relaxing scent of lavender in your room.
Lovely Lavender Massage
Lavender is wonderful infused in oil (learn how to make your own here) and can be used for relaxing massage. A simple foot massage before bed from mom or dad is a great way to foster a connection between family members. Massage also helps to improve lymph flow and immunity, making it a great practice to use during cold and flu season.
Bathing With Lavender
Another way to enjoy the relaxing properties of lavender during times of stress is to invite lavender into the bathtub!
Lavender Bath Salts
4 to 10 drops of lavender essential oil, use less for kids and more for adults, if desired.
2 cups Epsom salt
1-2 tablespoons of oil (olive, jojoba, rose hip, sweet almond, etc)
- Place the salt in a bowl.
- Mix the essential oils into the carrier oil and add to the salt.
- Mix well to break up any clumps.
- Add to the bath and enjoy!
When anyone in my family is nervous about something coming up in their day–a test at school, a big presentation at work, or a performance that night–we call on lavender essential oil. Simply put 1 to 2 drops of oil on a hairbrush before brushing. It will lightly scent the hair and create a sense of calm.
Keville, Kathi and Green, Mindy. (1995). Aromatherapy: a complete guide to the healing art. California: The Crossing Press.
Lawless, Julia. (1992). The encyclopedia of essential oils. Great Britain: Element Books Limited.