What you need to know about Essential Oils for Pregnancy

Most oils are safe to use when pregnant, but please use common sense! A few oils, such as:


tarragon, tansy, sage, clary sage, rosemary, nutmeg, hyssop, fennel and basil
should be used with caution and with a thorough understanding of how and when to use them. Some of these oils may help to accelerate labor once it has begun, which isn’t something to mess with early, before baby and your own body are ready. But right now we are going to focus on oils that are generally considered to be safe and useful during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

So what do you need to know about Essential Oils for Pregnancy?

Please keep in mind that anything you put in or on your body bears some risk, but if you have stopped to read the ingredients label on your shampoo, body wash, deodorant and make-up, you will see long lists of toxic chemicals that are not tested on humans for long term safety. We assume they are safe if they are sold in the store, but the truth is, there are chemicals and toxins that can build up in our bodies over time and by using them ourselves, we are passing these on to the most fragile and vulnerable ones. Our babies. The cleaners you use in your house, the products you put in your body and the scents and fragrances we find in all of these products are NOT good for us. And they are not good for our babies.

Please also keep in mind, that all of the information in this post is specific to Young Living Essential oils and they are the only brand I completely and 100% trust to put in or on my body or that of my baby.

Young Living is the oldest and most well respected essential oils company in the world. They own their own farms and have amazing farming practices that go beyond terms like “organic” and “natural”. They select the finest seeds, plant them, harvest them, distill the oils and do multiple tests for quality assurance. There simply isn’t any other company I trust the way I trust them. I have visited their farms and seen all of this first hand!


So, let’s talk about common uses essential oils during pregnancy  and how to safely use them.

Digestive Support

  • Peppermint
  • Ginger

These can be added to tea, taken with honey or in a capsule. They support the digestive system and are very soothing. If a mom is close to term, she may want to be careful with peppermint, as it has been known to decrease milk supply in some lactating moms. Many moms also report that drinking Ningxia Red really makes their bellies feel great too!

Oils that are comforting to rub on the belly

  • Sandalwood
  • Lavender

These are both gentle and can be applied neat (undiluted) or with a few drops of carrier oil to help them go further.

Respiratory Support
It’s perfectly normal to need a little bit of extra respiratory support while pregnant. Breathing can become increasingly challenging when the baby gets bigger, which we can’t prevent! But we can help maintain clear, open sinuses and airways!

  • Lemon
  • Peppermint
  • Thieves

These can be added to water, tea or taken in a capsule.

Some of my favorites to diffuse during the day that feel invigorating to breathe

  • Lavender
  • R.C.
  • Myrtle
  • Frankincense
  • Ravinsara

Many essential oils can be either diffused or applied topically, depending on your preference. Because of our unique biochemical makeups, different oils will affect each of us differently. All of these can be diffused and the lavender and Eucalyptus Radiata can be be swabbed inside the nose using your pinky. Each of these also make a wonderful chest rub when mixed with coconut oil.

Oils for pregnant legs
Some oils that feel amazing rubbed on the legs. You can massage your own legs are make a massage oil and have someone massage them for you!

  • Peace and Calming
  • Lavender
  • cypress (some sources say to wait to use this one until after the 5th month) 

What about Skin?
Oils that are great to rub on the skin:

  • Frankincense (may ease stretch marks)
  • Lavender (soothing)

Both of these oils are very gentle and can be applied directly (neat) or diluted in a carrier oil.

Sometimes a pregnant momma just wants to get a good night’s sleep. While essential oils cannot make your bladder larger or your baby less wiggly, they can help you relax and feel calm. Some oils that may help you fall and stay asleep when diffused or rubbed on the feet:

  • Peace and Calming
  • Lavender
  • Valor
  • Tranquil roll on
  • cedarwood

Oils to support Circulation and healthy muscles:

  • Tangerine
  • Roman Chamomile
  • Orange

Take in water, honey or a capsule

Immune Support
Pregnant and nursing mommas spend all of their energy nourishing another human being and sometimes that leaves their own bodies depleted. Obviously, good nutrition and plenty of rest is the first key to staying healthy, but there are a few oils that can really help as well! One key is being really regular about using the oils, half hearted efforts won’t keep me well! This has to be part of my daily routine!

Oils that will help maintain overall immunity:

  • Thieves
  • Oregano

Add to tea, take in a capsule. Thieves is also delicious added to a cup of whole milk! Tastes a little like eggnog and the fat in the milk makes it less spicy!

Oils that are great to diffuse to purify the air:

  • R.C.
  • Purification
  • citrus fresh
  • Idaho Balsam Fir
  • Frankincense

Pregnancy can be an overwhelming time to figure out what is and isn’t safe for you and your baby. Up until now, you might have been able to coast along, not worrying about your choices affecting anyone but yourself. But now you are responsible for the tiny human you are growing and every choice you make has an impact. I hope this info has been helpful to you and given you a clearer idea of which essential oils to use and how to safely and effectively use them!

For more information, enjoy my free video class:


Want to know which oils you need for Labor and Birth?

Learn more about The Best Essential Oils for Breastfeeding.

If you are not already using Young Living Essential Oils and are interested in getting your own wholesale membership, let me tell you a little bit about how that works. 


photo credit: Jennie Pyfferoen Photography http://www.jenniepyfferoen.com)

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DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor and the statements on this blog have not been evaluated by the FDA. Any products or techniques mentioned are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I am just a mom who shares what works for me!