To be succinct: If You Are Not Using Essential Oils In Your Life, You Should Be.
To be less succinct: the uses and benefits of essential oils are so numerous, a great big portion of the internet is dedicated to its discussion and exploration and education. This is only a small part of that larger whole. Essential oils are easy to use once you have an established collection. They come in small bottles due to their intense concentration, which are both easy to store and long-lasting. Little bits of essential oils go a very long way. The more exotic oils can be expensive (and be careful not to be fooled the ‘great deal’ that offers expensive oils quite cheaply; those are probably not genuine), but many of the basics are perfectly affordable and will cover all of your needs. Eucalyptus, lavender, grapefruit, any mint oil, and rose are just a few obvious examples.
Their most obvious and most surface use are for scenting things—put a few drops on your candles and enjoy the aroma as the candles burn, in your dryer, in your baths, or use the special roll-on applicators as a personal perfume. The scents of high-quality essential oils are pure and natural, with no worries about the chemical composition of whatever ‘fragrance’ means on the back of your regular perfume bottle. Mix and match to create your own scent, or buy pre-made blends from reputable sources, and stop worrying about whether or not all those chemicals are harmful in any way. I always start with simple flower/citrus combinations, because I like how they work together; lavender and lemon, rose and grapefruit, lime and jasmine. Mint bases, while less common in every day perfumes, work beautifully with softer floral scents during the fall.
But, oh, essential oils are so much more than just a scent. They are a way of life. Oil diffusers can be used to blanket your bedroom in lavender as you prepare to sleep, which is a surefire way to send your lovely self off to dream land as quickly as you can close your eyes. Yes, lavender oils promote relaxation and fallings asleep; rosemary promotes remembering things; the wonderfully varied mint family help a whole host of lung-and-sinus related issues (clogged nose? Take a great big whiff of peppermint, it’ll clear you right up!); citrus oils will brighten any room up while destroying bacteria; frankincense oil can be used to aide digestion. On that note, most essential oils are antibacterial, and therefore perfect for use in cleaning sinks, countertops, clothing, toys, and kitchen appliances. Pick an oil that is not harmful to ingest at such high concentrations, combine with some kind of carrier (another oil, alcohol, or even just well-shaken water), and get to disinfecting without pulling out the significantly worse-smelling bleach.
While essential oils can’t (yet) cure cancer, they can treat a whole host of minor maladies, from anxiety (lemon balm) to immune health (basil). Take the time to learn how to prepare a soothing mint-lavender diffusion to sooth your headache away rather than reaching for a bottle of pills that will just force the pain away. It is well worth the effort.