Today we’re continuing our series on must-have essential oils by focusing on one of our favorites – peppermint oil. Peppermint’s cool, refreshing scent always reminds us of the holidays, but that’s only one of the reasons why we love it. This potent oil is an important component of many natural health remedies and is a popular ingredient in homemade skin care.

When you take a sniff of something that smells like peppermint, what do you think of? At first its bracing aroma makes us think of chilly winter days, but then something amazing happens: its scent turns from cool to comforting, making us feel like we’re wrapped up by the fire with a cup of tea. This comfort is echoed in the impact that peppermint oil has on the digestive system.

HolidayTeaPeppermint has been used for millennia as a method to address indigestion. This highly regarded herb is sometimes referred to as the world’s oldest medicine, and with good reason: it contains menthol, a substance that helps to smooth the muscles in the digestive tract. Peppermint oil home remedies can be as simple as adding a drop of oil to a cup of tea or water to help soothe away an upset stomach.

Our peppermint essential oil is also well worth having nearby during cold and flu season. A few drops of oil in a humidifier can help everyone in the room enjoy clearer sinuses and lungs. For even more relief, pour boiling water and two drops of peppermint oil into a metal bowl. Position your face so it is about a foot away from the bowl, place a towel over your head, and breathe in the steam.

One of our favorite ways to use peppermint essential oil is as a stress reliever. We’ve been incredibly blessed here at Better Shea Butter: our homemade skin care ingredients have been flying off the shelves (in fact, three products have sold out altogether!). When the excitement becomes a little overwhelming, the refreshing scent of peppermint always helps us relax and get back on track. Peppermint oil improves mental clarity and energy levels while minimizing the effects of stress and exhaustion, helping to keep your mood balanced. We know we can’t get enough!

A final thing we love about peppermint essential oil is how well it goes into homemade skincare products. We love mixing it with shea butter and aloe vera to create a soothing moisturizer. Peppermint’s relaxing aroma makes it a great addition to products you plan to use at the end of the day. As an added bonus, menthol’s cooling effects can help ease away sore muscles and inflammation. Peppermint essential oil is also the perfect scent for holiday-themed skincare gifts. Alexis has a recipe for an adorable peppermint oil based sugar scrub gift on her blog: check it out at Jac o’lyn Murphy.

Whether you love its wintery scent or its ability to calm your stomach after a holiday feast, peppermint essential oil is such a useful thing to have on hand. Pick some up from our shop, and get ready to enjoy its numerous benefits.