Orange essential oil boasts beaucoup physical and mental health perks. It’s also super versatile and can be added to your daily routine in lots of wonderful ways. Here’s a rundown of the top 10 benefits plus the deets on how to use it safely.

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Here are the 10 top ways orange essential oil may benefit your overall health.

  1. May improve the appearance of skin. Orange essential oil can help give your skin a glow up. Its antimicrobial properties might reduce your risk acne when applied topically. Some folks also claim it can help unclog pores and reduce inflammation, but we need more research to prove this.
  2. Might promote healthy hair. Orange essential oil can provide some zesty TLC to hair, too! It’s a rich source of natural antioxidants which may promote hair health. Some folks also think it can ward away lice and might help dandruff flake off, but there’s not enough research to back this up.
  3. Aromatherapy. Aromatherapy can be relaxing AF. It might help reduce anxiety and enhance your mood. Research also suggests some scents can help improve sleep quality. Just keep in mind, we need more studies on orange essential oil to show how well it works on its own.
  4. Antibacterial and antifungal properties. Studies show orange essential oil has some pretty dope antibacterial and antifungal properties. That means it can be used to stop the growth of certain types of bacteria including E. coli and Staphylococcus aureus. A 2016 study also found it may help preserve food, cosmetics, and medications.
  5. Eases anxiety. A 2018 review of nine clinical studies found that inhalation or ingestion of certain kinds of orange essential oil reduced anxiety. Another study on mice found that the limonene — a compound found in the oil of citrus fruit peels — had an antidepressant effect. But we def need more research to prove these perks.
  6. Pain relief. A 2014 study found that orange essential oil aromatherapy helped ease labor pain 👶. But again, we need more research.
  7. Anticancer and antioxidant properties. According to a 2021 study, orange essential oil contains antioxidants that can combat disease-causing free radicals in your body. So in theory, orange essential oil might help slow or destroy certain cancer cells. But a lot more studies are needed to prove if this is legit.
  8. May boost athletic performance. Several animal and human studies show that aromatherapy with orange essential oil can boost positivity during exercise. It may also help reduce fatigue and improve post-workout recovery.
  9. Promotes weight loss. A pair of recent animal studies examined the effect of orange essential oil microcapsules on rats fed a high fat diet. In the first study, the oil cut weight gain by over 41 percent. And in the other study, orange essential oil protected the gut lining and reduced gut toxins which slashed inflammation and led to weight loss. But we need way more studies on humans. DO NOT ingest orange essential oil!
  10. Bug repellent. Studies show orange essential oil can help ward away ants, mosquitos, and bed bugs. You can just dab some on your body or use it in a candle diffuser to get pests to buzz off.

Essential oils are concentrated plant extracts (though they aren’t actually “oily”). Generally, orange essential oil is created by cold pressing the oil out of the rinds. Each variety can boast its own unique benefits. Some popular types include:

  • blood orange
  • sweet orange
  • wild orange

The essential oil can be used in your aromatherapy regimen or as a topical treatment when diluted with a carrier oil or cream.

Just like there are different kinds of oranges, there are different kinds of orange essential oils. Each variety has its own vibe and comes with a unique set of pros and cons. Here’s the squeeze.

Blood orange essential oil benefits

This variety of orange essential oil might have cancer-fighting and prevention properties. It’s also thought to be a mood elevator and helpful for metabolic and skin health. A lot of the blood orange benefits come from anthocyanins, the pigment that makes these fruits red inside.

Sweet orange essential oil benefits

While bright and energizing, sweet orange essential oil has a milder scent compared to other orange essential oils. When inhaled, it can have an invigorating and soothing effect. Sweet orange oil is also touted for supporting the immune system, but we need more proof.

Wild orange essential oil benefits

Diffused wild orange essential oil might help you relieve stress. It’s also being studied as a way to reduce dementia. But once again, we need more proof to show the benefits are for real.

Orange essential oil is very, very versatile. Here’s a breakdown of the different ways to use essential oil and tips on how to do so.

Diffusers for aromatherapy

Diffusers are a great way to breathe in the benefits of essential oils. Lots of diffusers use heat to turn essential oils into vapor. But others use water and ultrasonic vibration to create an infused mist. You can also keep it old school with a reed diffuser or terracotta.

Topical uses

There are tons of ways to use topical essential oils at home. You can:

  • Apply a few drops to your hands and inhale.
  • Sprinkle some on your shower floor or in the tub.
  • Dot a few drops on your neck or wrists as a personal fragrance.
  • DIY an air freshener by adding some essential oil to a spray bottle filled with water.
  • Add some orange essential oil to your regular body lotion. (Just be sure you really like it first.)

Using orange essential oil for aromatherapy or topical treatment tends to be safe. Orange essential oils are classified by the FDA as generally recognized as safe (GRAS). But there are still some risks to watch out for. For example, orange essential oils might trigger skin irritation. Topical use can also make your skin more sensitive to the sun.

Also, essential oils, including orange essential oils, should never be ingested. It can cause diarrhea, cramping, and even severe poisoning.

Here are some more tips to keep your orange essential oil use safe and effective.

  • Read the label. Make sure you opt for a high quality essential oil. If it says it contains “fragrance” it’s not a pure essential oil and could contain harsh chemicals.
  • Dilute it. A lot of essential oils are sold premixed with carrier oils, but pure products need to be diluted in a carrier oil before you apply them topically. Olive, coconut, or almond oils are all top-notch options. No need to dilute first if using in a diffuser for aromatherapy.
  • Avoid sensitive areas. Don’t apply essential oil near your eyes, mouth, or private parts. Trust us.
  • Storage. Store your oils in a dark, cool area. Also be sure to keep them out of reach from kiddos or pets.

While research suggests there are health benefits, the FDA doesn’t monitor or regulate the purity or quality of essential oils. It’s important to talk with a healthcare professional before you begin using essential oils and be sure to research the quality of a brand’s products. Always do a patch test before trying a new essential oil.

Who should avoid orange essential oil?

Everyone should avoid eating orange essential oil and if you’re preggo or breastfeeding, talk with your doctor before using topically or in aromatherapy. There aren’t enough studies to show if it’s safe for bébés.

You should also talk with your doc about aromatherapy if you have a condition that affects your respiratory system. This includes asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), lung cancer, and chronic bronchitis. Certain essential oils can trigger breathing problems.

Oh, and it might not be right for you if you’re prone to migraine. Some smells can trigger an attack — though, on the other hand, some essential oils might offer relief from headaches.

Orange essential oils have tons of potential perks and applications. Popular varieties include sweet orange, wild orange, and blood orange. All of them can be used as a topical treatment or as aromatherapy. It’s also important you stick to high quality products that don’t contain additives that can irritate your skin or respiratory system.