Can women use essential oils for sex or to boost libido? It’s a good question, and one that a lot of women are asking.
You may have heard people talk about using essential oils in the bedroom, and you may even have heard them mention specific oils, like ylang ylang or clary sage. But do they work, which ones work, and how do you use them?
Before we jump into talking about essential oils for sex, let’s first acknowledge that the path to embracing and enjoying our sexuality as women often seems very difficult to navigate. (Am I right?!?!) Everything pulls us in the opposite direction – the direction that leads to stress, fatigue, and little or no interest in sex.
And the sensual woman inside of us, the one who used to show up with some frequency, seems to have disappeared. Very often, it seems like finding her will take more effort and energy than we have to give.
For me, finding that inner sensual woman has been very difficult at times. In trying to find her, I’ve taken a number of steps, including taking better care of my health, exercising regularly, and getting my mind around the fact that sex is important for me, not just my husband.
But I wanted more, and so I started thinking about essential oils for sex and sensuality.
I knew a little bit about essential oils, but not much. I believed they could help promote physical and emotional health in some cases, and so I started to wonder if they could be used to increase libido or sexual energy. As it turns out, it seems likely that they can. After some reading and study, here’s what I learned:
People have used essential oils to increase sensuality and libido for thousands of years.
The idea of using essential oils for sex and sensuality, and the belief that oils can increase interest in and enjoyment of sex, is not new; people have been using them for those purposes for a very long time.
Ancient Egyptian writers and artists often created sensual images by referring to scents and fragrances in the context of sexual relationships. And the Song of Songs in the Bible refers to scents, perfumes and anointing oils as part of its sensual imagery.
While many oils are considered to have sensual properties, several emerge as the top sensual oils for women.
Although a woman’s response to scents is very individual and personal, certain scents are considered to be particularly sensual or evocative for women. Modern Essentials, 5th Edition lists ylang ylang, clary sage, rose, geranium, and jasmine as essential oils for sex or sensuality for women, ones that may promote sexual energy or enhance libido.
Other sources mention sandalwood, cinnamon and the citrus oils. Some companies create blends of oils that are designed to promote sensuality and sexuality in women, using the sensual scents they consider most effective.
For example, one of those blends, my current favorite sensual essential oil blend, contains patchouli, bergamot, sandalwood, rose, jasmine, cinnamon bark, vetiver, ylang ylang, geranium, and cocoa and vanilla bean extracts. (And purchasing it as a blend is much less expensive than purchasing all of those oils separately.
Oils can be used in several ways to enhance sensual feelings.
Generally, these methods involve applying diluted essential oils to the skin, inhaling the scent of the oils, or both. The oils should be diluted in a carrier oil (such as almond oil, light olive oil or liquid coconut oil) and can be worn as a perfume.
The same oil mixture can be used as a massage oil. In addition, oils can be added to a warm bath or shower, diffused or sprayed into the air, or spritzed onto bed linens. (Don’t add carrier oils to a bath or shower, as they can be slippery.)
Different oils appeal to different women.
Some women love floral scents, such ylang ylang, jasmine or rose. Some feel energized by spicy scents, like cinnamon, or energizing scents, like lemon or orange. Some women may consider a relaxing scent to be sensual, while others may find that an invigorating scent increases their sexual energy.
So, armed with this information, I tested some of these oils and blends:
I diluted all of these in a carrier oil, either fractionated coconut oil or almond oil. I wanted to try ylang ylang because it came up repeatedly in my research as a primary essential oil for sensuality in women.
But it’s very strong and very floral, so I added wild orange or bergamot (a light citrus scent) to “soften” it. I’ve used all of these mixtures as a perfume (separately, not together); I put some of them in roller bottles for easy application and the rest in regular oil bottles.
I also used a couple of the combinations as a bath oil and a massage oil. I talked my husband into giving me several massages (it wasn’t that hard!).
And I took the advice of a midwife friend, who suggested rolling or massaging the oil mixtures onto the lower abdomen (over the ovaries). After several weeks of experimentation, here’s what I learned:
Essential oils can reduce stress and elevate mood, which can promote increased feelings of sensuality and sexual energy.
Although they weren’t the magical cure I was seeking, the essential oil mixtures increased sensual feelings and interest in sex – but not on their own.
So, for example, if I worked hard all day, never took a break, worked until bedtime and fell into bed exhausted, no amount of ylang ylang (or anything else) was going to conjure up a sensual mood! It just wasn’t going to happen.
But, if I used the oils as part of a plan, taking some time to unwind, relax, have a glass of wine, or enjoy a warm bath or massage – then it was fairly easy to feel sensual and create some sexual energy.
Now, you might be thinking, “Well, making a plan and taking some time to unwind could put you in the mood without essential oils.” And you’re right – it could. At this point I can’t say for certain that something inherent in the oils increases sensuality or libido, or if they create a placebo effect.
Either way, for a small investment of money and time, I think the results were worth the effort. I plan to keep experimenting, and if I learn anything new I’ll let you know.
If you want to experiment with essential oils for sex or sensuality, consider first trying ylang ylang oil or a blend designed to promote sensuality. If you have a friend who sells essential oils, ask to try some samples. You can also sometimes test them or try samples in health food stores and high-end grocery stores.
The oils I tried are doTERRA, which you can purchase from a doTERRA consultant or on Amazon – Whisper Blend, Ylang Ylang and Wild Orange. I particularly like Whisper and find it to be a very sensual scent.
( Please note: This post does not provide medical or counseling advice. If you’re experiencing significant problems related to sexuality, please talk with a physician or professional counselor. Essential oils are not without risks, so use them carefully and sparingly. Don’t ingest them, don’t apply them to sensitive tissues, and don’t use them on children without consulting a physician. )
More about essential oils and increasing your sexual energy
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This course can help you figure out why your libido or your sex life have gone way off track. It can help you answer the question, “Is there something wrong with me?” (I’ll give you a hint – the answer is no! But you may need some new information and strategies to get things going again.) And it provides practical strategies to help you find give your libido a boost, starting today.
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