What Oils Are Best for a Vaporizer?

Essential oils enhance the positive impact of a home vaporizer.
Essential oils enhance the positive impact of a home vaporizer. (Image: Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Vaporizers are an effective tool for increasing the humidity of air within a home. Vaporizers work by heating water into steam, which forms a mist that adds moisture to the air. They help treat common skin and breathing problems such as dry or sensitive skin, chest congestion and bloody noses caused by dryness. Vaporizers also reduce static electricity. Essential oils added to a vaporizer enhance the appliance's beneficial qualities by utilizing the power of aromatherapy. The benefit varies according to the type of oil added.

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The oil from this flowering plant has a sweet, mellow odor and has relaxing qualities. It is used in aromatherapy to calm and soothe. Lavender is a traditional sleep aid and has antiseptic properties, making it effective for use in bed and bath areas. Chamomile essential oil enhances the relaxing effect without strongly affecting lavender’s scent.


This oil has a strong, fresh herbal aroma and possesses antiseptic qualities. Eucalyptus helps to clear congestion, making it suitable for use by anyone who is sick. Eucalyptus, along with menthol and camphor, is one of the main ingredients of Vicks VapoRub.


Lemon essential oil has a bright, clean smell that energizes and enlivens. Lemon has an uplifting quality when used as aromatherapy oil, as do other citrus oils such as orange and grapefruit. It also has the ability to hide less pleasant odors, so it is good for use in kitchens.


This Mediterranean herb has a sharp, sweet herbal aroma that is clarifying and stimulating. One of its aromatherapy benefits is improvement of memory loss and concentration, making it beneficial for use in work areas and during studying.


This bright, lemony, grassy oil is well known for its insect-repelling properties. Its strong scent is energizing and uplifting, which makes it ideal for use outdoors -- especially during outdoor activities. Its strong scent blends well with basil without diluting its stimulating effect.


This essential oil has a woodsy, sweet smell that balances and relaxes frayed nerves. It is also an effective insect repellent, along with citronella, but has a milder odor that some find preferable to citronella. Its relaxing qualities make it more suitable for indoor use, particularly in sleeping areas.


The warm, earthy, sweet essential oil has relaxing qualities. Aromatherapists often use patchouli as an aphrodisiac in aromatherapy, and to induce a romantic atmosphere in a bedroom. Patchouli is also blended with other oils such as cinnamon, sandalwood and bergamot to enhance its effects while providing a more sophisticated aroma.


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