I use a lot of essential oils – Frankincense burning in the living room; Lavender oil neat on burns or on my pillow to relax; Tea Tree and Eucalyptus in hot water during a steamy shower when I have a cold… But once pregnant, I was warned against using any at all. Not worth the risk, I was told. Is that another old wives’ tale, or should we really avoid aromatherapy during pregnancy? I asked Amanda Lacey – legendary facialist, aromatherapy expert and Gwyneth’s favourite – for a definitive answer: are essential oils safe?
“Don’t use any essential oils in your first 12 weeks of pregnancy, and always avoid the following: Rosemary, Basil, Cedarwood, Glove, Fennel, Thyme, Parsley, Cinnamon, Myrrh, Pennyroyal, Cypress, Juniper.”
“After week 12, several oils can be hugely beneficial. Lavender blended into a base oil and massaged into the skin can induce sleep; ease headaches, and also hydrates the skin beautifully. Organic Persian Rose Oil is also hugely hydrating. For morning sickness try Lemon Oil as an inhalant, sprinkled on your pillow. Neroli is another great soother of aches and pains, as well as depression. Chamomile tackles muscle pain and indigestion, Grapefruit’s excellent for water retention, and Eucalyptus helps ease coughs and colds.”
PBG PRODUCT TIP: I love Amanda’s Oils of Provence Face Oil £88 – light, soothing and relaxing for post-week-12 facial massage.