Thieves Oil is one of my new favorite family “remedies” in my holistic medicine chest arsenal. A blend of five essential oils, I was introduced to it last year from a friend of mine who swore by it’s effectiveness in battling everything from headaches to mouth sores to coughs and colds. Anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-septic and anti-fungal, thieves oil is safe for children (when administered by a caring, knowledegable adult) and I use it in my home as a hand sanitizer, rubbed on little (and big) chests and necks when they are down with winter colds, and even as an air purifier during cold and cough season.
Not to mention, it makes your house and hands smell like Christmas.
Thieves oil is named as such because it is rumored that the original blend was given to the King of England after a band of thieves who had been stealing from the ill, dying and dead during the plague, were caught. Demanding to know how they stayed well even after being intimately close with those who were infected, the thieves explained that they had been spice merchants and traders pre-plague and had developed this blend of herbs and spices, and rubbed it on their throats, ears, noses and hands before going out on their raids.
You can buy Thieves Oil online, but I prefer to make my own – much more economical and I never have to re-order because one “batch” lasts a long, long time!
I bought most of these oils and supplies last year from a local store, but they are also available via Mountain Rose Herbs.
The ingredients :
- 1 Tablespoon (15 ml) Clove Essential Oil
- 1 Tablespoon (15 ml) Lemon Essential Oil
- 2-1/2 teaspoons (12.5 ml) Cinnamon (Cassia) Bark Essential Oil
- 2 (10 ml) teaspoons Eucalyptus Essential Oil
- 2 (10 ml) teaspoons Rosemary Essential Oil
- A carrier oil of your choice*
- Dark-colored bottles with droppers (I have the 1-ounce size, some with regular screw tops and a few dropper tops)
*The carrier oil I tend to prefer is Sweet Almond Oil because it’s easily available, is safe for newborns on up and I always have it on hand for use as a massage oil, carrier oil or just after-bath oil for those sensitive-skinned ones living among us. It also sinks into the skin easily without being greasy, and can be used at 100% dilution. Other carrier oils you can use at 100% dilution include grapeseed and apricot kernel or if you want to blend carrier oils, try 10% avocado or jojoba, mixed in, among others.
In a glass measuring cup, measure out all of the essential oils.
It ends up making around an eighth of a cup of essential oil blend.
But remember, these are essential oils we are talking about. They are POTENT and are almost never, ever used without being diluted into either a carrier oil or in water. An eighth of a cup of undiluted essential oil blend is A LOT. It has lasted me over a year and I’ve given a few (diluted) bottles away. Just saying.
How to use Thieves Oil
I use Thieves Oil, if not daily, then at least several times a week. I keep two bottles handy at all times : one undiluted (or, “neat”) and another diluted with my favorite carrier oil (I tend to favor almond or jojoba oil) for use topically. Please make sure that your undiluted and your diluted bottles are CAREFULLY and CLEARLY marked as such!
To dilute your Thieves Oil for use topically, simply blend :
12-30 drops of essential oil blend with 2 Tablespoons of carrier oil, or up to 5 drops per teaspoon of carrier oil,
You can use your DILUTED Thieves Oil, topically :
- As a hand sanitizer
- Massaged onto the bottom of the feet to ward away cold and flu
- Massaged onto the small of your back and the back of your neck to minimize aches and pains during cold and flu season
- Rubbed into the chest, neck and ears to ward away the cold and flu and help open up the sinuses
- Dab a drop on your temples to help ward away a headache
- Dab a drop on an insect bite to make it stop itching
You can use your UNDILUTED Thieves Oil by adding :
- 1-9 drops in a bowl of just-boiled water or a humidifer for room purification
- 1 drop per ounce of water for use as an all-purpose disinfecting spray (you can also use this as a room or fabric/mattress spray at this ratio)
- a few drops mixed in to your steam vacuum or steam mop water,
- a few drops mixed with baking soda to use as a disinfectant scrub (sinks, bathtubs, etc.),
- a maximum of 8 drops in a bath or shower (less for children, more for adults)
- 8 drops to a diffuser to clean the air (I do this all the time during cold and flu season)
- 5-10 drops in your washing machine to disinfect toys, sheets, etc.
- add a drop or two to a soft cloth to clean and disinfect items like cell phones or computers
Make sure to err on the low side of dilution for children or pregnant women**, and on the higher side for adults.
Make sure that you clearly label your essential oil blends and keep them away from children. Yes, they are safe to use, sparingly on children***, but they should be administered by the hands of a knowledgeable adult.
I’ve seen stories online from people who use Thieves Oil for all manner of things from a foot bath when dealing with athletes foot (due to it’s anti-fungal properties), mixed with vinegar as a mouthwash (do NOT ingest) and even for clearing up mold in the home. I haven’t tried any of these options, I don’t necessarily support or recommend them, but they are out there if you are interested.
Have you ever used Thieves Oil? What other oil blends do you keep in your holistic medicine chest?
Curious about using other essential oils for holistic purposes? These are my favorite resources:
** When I first made this blend I investigated each ingredient to find out it’s safety for pregnant women. They all came back safe but this year, when I wrote this post, I’m finding differing opinions on cinnamon bark oil. From what I read last year cinnamon leaf oil and cinnamon oil are not safe for pregnant women (they can cause contractions and potentially induce labor) but cinnamon bark oil was okay. Depending on the source, I’m finding different information this time and, as I’m not a trained herbalist, I’m not going to tell you it’s 100% safe however I used it while pregnant (diluted with a carrier oil) with no problems.
***Note : I would not use this topically on children under 18 months (and at that age, heavily diluted) and would only use it sparingly on small children.
Thieves® is a registered trademark of Young Living Essential Oils, LC. heartland Renaissance is not affiliated with Young Living Essential Oils, LC in any way.