The scent of lavender can be described as having a slightly floral overtone. It truly is one of the most versatile oils in nature and because there are dozens of different varieties of lavender, grown all over the world, they all smell different according to the environment they are grown in.  In the perfume industry lavender is used widely to add a top or middle note and is described by professional sniffers as having ‘a green, hay-like sweetness’. Lavender is widely grown in England and in the Provence region of France for commercial use particularly in perfume, essential oils and luxury scented candles.

The early use of lavender was recorded 2,500 years ago when it was customarily used for mummification and perfume by the Egyptians, Phoenicians, and peoples of Arabia. The Romans then used lavender oils for bathing, cooking, and scenting the air. The flower's soothing qualities, and the fact that it a useful insect-repellent were already recognised as valuable commodities among Arabians and the Ancient Greeks. The cultivation and use of lavender spread across Europe from Greece and was introduced into France, Spain, Italy and England in the 1600s, and from there to the American colonies.

From Medieval times, lavender was always popular in monastery gardens because of its various healing properties. Pure lavender oil for example can soothe skin irritations such as sunburn, eczema, and minor cuts and scrapes. You can use it for athlete’s foot too as it’s an antibacterial. Lavender is one of the very few essential oils that can actually be applied directly to the skin, although it is quite potent so only a couple of drops are necessary.  It’s amazing at treating minor burns too and fantastic at helping to stop the itch of mosquito bites. Simply apply a drop to the bite and let it soak in. Repeat this step three times in order to stop the itching and help to reduce swelling. To ease headaches and tension, simply apply a few drops to your forehead and rest quietly.

In England lavender is widely used to scent drawers and clothing because moths, fleas and the like do not like lavender so it is a natural insect repellent. It’s also an excellent natural air freshener, so you can use lavender in a scented candle or in a wedding candle, or use fresh, dried or lavender in oil form to scent your room. We have essential oils online that you can use in a diffuser, along with aromatherapy candles and luxury scented candles.

Perhaps the most famous commodity of lavender is that it is a ‘mood balancing’ herb prescribed by aroma-therapists to aid in reducing stress, anxiety, insomnia and mild depression because of its unbeatable sedative and calming effects. At the same time it can also be uplifting, refreshing and rejuvenating. Use lavender in scented candles, diffusers, eye pillows, or a few drops of essential oils in your bath; then lie back, breathe in and enjoy the soothing effects of this amazing herb.

Lavender is a herb of many uses. Relaxing and rejuvenating; deodorising and great for the skin and hair; an air freshener and an insect repellent; in our opinion lavender is the one essential oil no self-respecting kitchen or holiday bag should be without!

Interesting Facts

Christian lore tells us that the lavender plant was taken from the Garden of Eden by Adam and Eve.

According to legend, the clothing of baby Jesus was laid upon a lavender bush to dry and so the plant is regarded as a holy safeguard against evil. In many Christian houses, a cross of lavender has been hung over the door for protection, and during the Great Plague in London in 1666 lavender was fastened to the wrist to protect against the awful disease. In 16th-century France, lavender was also used to resist infection. Glove-makers, for example, added the perfume to their gloves and escaped cholera.

In Medieval and Renaissance Europe, washing women were known as "lavenders" because they would dry their laundry on lavender bushes and use the herb to scent draws.

One of the most useful functions of lavender is that it repels mosquitos. When sunbathing in the early evening, try putting a few drops on to your towel and enjoy the soothing fragrance whilst being left in peace from the mossies! At home try lighting your luxury scented candles and keep pests at bay.

Find out where to buy lavender essential oil and other goodies from the Healing Room on the AromaWorks website