There are many essential oils available, which can make it overwhelming to know where to begin. However, I aim to help you get started with just five essential oils for improving focus and productivity. While these oils are not the only ones that can help with focus, the goal is to provide a simplified list to help you take advantage of the benefits that essential oils offer. The intention is not to cover every single essential oil available, but rather to give you a starting point.

As a mom, you always want to make sure your family is in tip-top shape. Now, more than ever, as we face the challenges of remote schooling and work, it is essential that we keep our minds sharp and focused.

Did you know that some scents have been proven to increase brain function? 

Yes, that's right. You can use the power of smell to boost your thinking abilities. In this blog post, I'll guide you through some of the scents that will help you and your family stay focused, creative, and alert.

You can inhale these in a diffuser (follow your diffuser’s instructions for the number of drops) or mix with some coconut oil and rub on the wrists, on the ears, or a little dab on the nose. You can even mix all those listed below (except cinnamon and peppermint) with Epsom salts and make a relaxing and brain-stimulating bath!!

Let’s get started!

Rosemary: This herb is not only great on roasted potatoes, but it's also an excellent enhancer of memory and concentration. Research has found that rosemary has a compound called 1,8-cineole, which stimulates brain activity. 

A study found that rosemary oil helps improve speed and accuracy for mental tasks, which is excellent news for those seeking a natural way to improve focus. (Moss, M., Cook, J., Wesnes, K., & Duckett, P. (2003). Aromas of rosemary and lavender essential oils differentially affect cognition and mood in healthy adults. International Journal of Neuroscience, 113(1), 15–38.)

PeppermintI'm sure you're familiar with the refreshing smell of peppermint. This scent does more than just freshen your breath, though. Peppermint has been found to improve thinking performance, particularly in tasks that require lasting attention and vigilance. 

One study found that the aroma of peppermint oil improves memory and increases alertness. (Moss, M., Hewitt, S., Moss, L., & Wesnes, K. (2008). Modulation of cognitive performance and mood by aromas of peppermint and ylang-ylang. International Journal of Neuroscience, 118(1), 59–77.)

Another study found that inhaling peppermint oil could lead to improved cognitive function, suggesting improved focus, alertness, and memory. (Raudenbush, B., Grayhem, R., Sears, T., & Wilson, I. (2009). Effects of peppermint and cinnamon odor administration on simulated driving alertness, mood and workload. North American Journal of Psychology, 11(2))

LemonThe bright, zesty scent of lemon can improve mood and increase concentration. The scent of lemon can reduce errors in cognitive tasks and improve alertness. 

Research has shown that lemon oil also affects dopamine and serotonin activity in the brain to reduce stress and boost thinking function. (Komiya, M., Takeuchi, T., & Harada, E. (2006). Lemon oil vapor causes an anti-stress effect via modulating the 5-HT and DA activities in mice. Behavioural Brain Research, 172(2), 240-249.)

Lavender: If you need to de-stress and calm your mind, try lavender. This scent has been found to reduce anxiety and increase relaxation. Lavender can also boost thinking function (probably because the brain is more relaxed), particularly in memory and attention tasks. 

CinnamonThis spicy scent is not only delicious in your baked goods, but it also enhances cognitive processing. Research has found that cinnamon can help improve attention and working memory, making it an excellent scent for studying and working. Because cinnamon essential oil is considered a “hot” oil to the skin, only add this to your diffuser.

Experimenting with different combinations of essential oils is one aspect of their usage that I thoroughly enjoy. Whether it's creating personalized favorites or purchasing pre-made blends, the possibilities are endless. Enjoy these possibilities!

  • Focus Blend: 2 drops each of peppermint, rosemary, and lemon oil
  • Energizing Blend: 2 drops each of eucalyptus, basil, and lemon oil
  • Minty Focus Blend: 3 drops peppermint, 2 drops eucalyptus, and 1 drop rosemary
  • Calming Blend: 2 drops each of lavender, frankincense, and bergamot oil
  • Citrus Energy Blend: Combine 3 drops of lemon, 2 drops of orange, and 1 drop of grapefruit. Citrus oils are known for their uplifting and energizing properties, which can help fight fatigue and boost productivity. (Kiecolt-Glaser, J. K., Graham, J. E., Malarkey, W. B., Porter, K., Lemeshow, S., & Glaser, R. (2008). Olfactory influences on mood and autonomic, endocrine, and immune function. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 33(3), 328-339.)
  • Herbaceous Calm Blend: Combine 2 drops of basil, 2 drops of rosemary, and 2 drops of lavender. This blend is calming, yet mentally stimulating, promoting a sense of balance and mental clarity. (Koulivand, P. H., Khaleghi Ghadiri, M., & Gorji, A. (2013). Lavender and the nervous system. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2013.)
  • Grounding Focus Blend: Mix 3 drops of cedarwood, 2 drops of vetiver, and 1 drop of lavender. The woodsy, grounding scents of cedarwood and vetiver have been used traditionally for promoting focus, while lavender adds a calming balance. (Inhibitory effects of the essential oil from SuHeXiang Wan on the central nervous system after inhalation. Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin, 26(4), 485-489. And Axe, J. (2016). Essential Oils: Ancient Medicine. Destiny Image Publishers.)
Final Thoughts
As a mom, you have a lot on your plate, and ensuring you and your family have sharp minds is essential. The good news is you can use the power of scent to boost thinking function. Whether you need to increase memory, focus, or reduce stress, there is a scent for that. Try incorporating these scents into your daily life and see the difference it makes. Happy sniffing and thinking!

If you are interested in using essential oils to help with focus and ADHD, please reach out to me so I can help create a custom cart for your specific needs. I'm here to help.

I’m a proud affiliate for some of these tools and products that are suggested on this page and throughout my site. If you click on a product and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. My recommendations are based on knowledge and experience and I recommend them because they are genuinely useful, not because of the small commission I may receive


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