Aromatherapy tips for study & exams

It's the time of year when thousands of students are frantically revising for forthcoming exams. We know how stressful it can be so we thought we'd pull together a few tips on how aromatherapy can help support you during this 'high-pressure' time. We hope you find them useful...

General revision advice

Before we get started on aromatherapy, we thought we'd recap on a few basic tips to help you revise:

  • Give yourself enough time to revise. Make a schedule and don’t leave everything until the last minute.
  • Organise your study space and make sure it is well lit, comfortable, and tidy. Research has shown that ‘mess equals stress’ so make sure your notes are neat and organised and your desk decluttered.
  • Take breaks from studying every ninety minutes or so to improve your focus and attention. Choose a break activity that will help you return refreshed and ready to go again e.g. a walk, stretch, tidying up or eating a healthy snack. Avoid activities like taking a nap, eating junk food, having a coffee, or browsing the web, which can all hinder your ability to concentrate.
  • Eat and drink healthily. Improve your concentration and memory by feeding your body and brain with natural, fresh, vitamin rich foods! Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water and avoid caffeine and energy drinks. Food and drinks that can help boost your ability to focus include blueberries, avocados, leafy green vegetables, fatty fish, dark chocolate, flax seeds, nuts, green tea, and water.
  • Ensure you are getting sufficient sleep. Healthy sleep is essential for optimal learning and memory function. Sleep deprivation means you can’t focus your attention properly or learn efficiently. Sleep also plays a role in the consolidation of memory, which is vital for learning new information.

Aromatherapy blends to help you revise

Aromatherapy essential oils can be extremely useful for boosting concentration and energy levels, relieving anxiety, stress and tension and helping you sleep. 

To aid concentration and memory

Inhaling a mix of stimulating essential oils can help to focus your mind and increase alertness whilst studying. Some of these oils also have 'cephalic' properties which means they actually help to stimulate the mind and improve memory and concentration levels.

The strongest cephalic essential oil is Rosemary – but Peppermint, Basil and Cardamon can also be used. Other stimulating oils include Grapefruit, Lemon, Lemon Eucalyptus and Spearmint.

For a simple solution and a 'quick hit' pop a few drops of Rosemary essential oil on a tissue and sniff at regular intervals.

If you’d like to experiment with a combination of these oils, we recommend using 20 drops of Lemon essential oil, 6 drops of Basil and 2 of Rosemary. Use a few drops in an aromatherapy diffuser, oil burner or inhaler to help boost flagging energy levels and to aid concentration. Or simply pop a few drops of the blend on a tissue and sniff regularly.

For a ready-made solution you could try our Focus pure essential oil blend or Focus Spritz both blended with May Chang, Basil, Sweet Marjoram and Sage.

To help relieve stress

Essential oils are amazing stress relievers. The most useful oils are: Lavender, Roman Chamomile, Neroli or Petitgrain (Petitgrain is a more affordable option), Sweet Orange, Marjoram, Bergamot, Frankincense, Clary Sage, and Benzoin. Ideally when choosing oils, you should select the ones that appeal to you the most (i.e. the ones that you like the smell of) as these will be the ones that your body needs the most! If you’re not sure though, here are some ideas to try:

Relaxing Room Spray: 

Take 100ml of Orange Flower Hydrolat in a spray bottle and add 10 drops of Sweet Orange, 5 drops of Geranium and 4 drops of Petitgrain. Shake well before use and spray liberally into the room.

For a ready-made solution try our Balance Spritz with Orange Flower Hydrolat and pure essential oils of Neroli, Bergamot, Sweet Orange and Petitgrain.

Calming Pulse Point Balm:

In a small jar mix 20ml of Aloe Vera Gel with 4 drops Petitgrain, 4 Bergamot and 2 Benzoin. This can be used as a pulse point balm, to soothe nerves and anxieties and help you feel ‘on top of everything’.

Stress Busting Massage Oil: 

Regular aromatherapy massages while you're studying can help both mind and body to relax and unwind. An appointment with a professional aromatherapist is the best option however you could try self-massage at home (or ask a friend/partner). Take 20ml Grapeseed Oil and 10ml St John’s Wort Oil and add 8 drops of Lavender essential oil, 2 Roman Chamomile and 2 drops Petitgrain. Or try one of our pre-blended massage oils.

Soothing Bath Blend:

If you have a bath at home then a warm soothing, soak before bed is great to help you relax and unwind (and help you sleep). Make your own aromatherapy bath blend with 15ml of fragrance-free Bath Oil or SLS Free Bath & Shower Gel, 4 drops of Lavender essential oil, 4 Bergamot, 2 Petitgrain and 2 Roman Chamomile and add to the bath once the water has run. 

If you don't have time to make your own massage or bath blends why not buy our Relaxing pure essential oil blend with Frankincense, Cedarwood, Mandarin and Yarrow. This can be diluted with a carrier oil for massage and can also be added to the bath.

To help you get a good night's sleep

A good, restful night's sleep is essential. Before you go to bed, vaporise 5 drops of Lavender, 5 Sweet Orange and 3 Petitgrain in your bedroom. You could also pop 5 drops of Lavender on a tissue and place this inside your pillowcase when you go to bed. You will then breathe in its calming, soothing aroma all night long. If you are feeling particularly stressed, you could also massage 5 drops of our diluted Neroli Light essential oil on to your chest and neck just before you go to bed. Neroli light is pre-diluted with Jojoba Oil so is perfectly safe to apply direct to your skin!

Alternatively, you could try our Sweet Dreams Spritz or Sweet Dreams pure essential oil blend.

Good luck and do get in touch if we can be of further assistance!

Joannah Metcalfe
Consultant Aromatherapist

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