Cooling Essential Oils for Hot Summer Days | Nikura

5 min read / 9 July 2024 / yasmin sharp

Cooling Essential Oils for Hot Summer Days

Discover the best cooling essential oils for hot summer days and learn how to use them to stay refreshed and comfortable.

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Although you never truly know where you stand with the British weather, it’s always a good idea to be prepared – for the worst and the best.

Temperatures can start to soar in July and August and using cooling oils like lavender, peppermint and eucalyptus can offer a natural way to keep your body temperature down.

We run through some of the best cooling essential oils to use this summer, along with a few suggestions on how to apply them.

What are the best cooling oils for the summer?

We’ve picked out some of the most effective cooling essential oils for you to beat the heat during the summer:

Peppermint oil is ideal for treating sunburn

The main active ingredient of peppermint essential oil is menthol, which contains anti-inflammatory, antifungal, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.

It’s one of the best essential oils for the summer, with one 2015 review finding that the oil could be effective at relieving pain spasms and also reducing inflammation, a common side effect caused by overexposure to the sun.

Calm skin soreness and overheating with spearmint oil

Menthol is also the active ingredient of spearmint, which gives you another alternative for keeping cool during the summer.

When applied topically, it can offer relief to calm skin irritation and inflammation, with researchers noting that it can reduce swelling and also provide analgesic activity.

Eucalyptus oil keeps you refreshed and energised in the sun

Eucalyptus oil is regarded as one of the most effective cooling essential oils, with many people using the oil as an after-sun spray, which can help to lower your body temperature and fight off heat fatigue.

The minty-fresh scent is well known for its cooling and cleansing properties and it also contains a compound called cineole, which some studies have found can be useful in opening airways to improve breathing.

So, if you suffer from allergies that affect your nose or chest, this could offer some relief.

Keep your skin bug free by applying tea tree oil

Bugs and insects are at their height during the summer, so if you have sensitive skin or can’t seem to get away from annoying, itchy bites, it’s a good idea to keep some tea tree oil to hand.

One test-tube study found that topical application (after dilution) of tea tree oil allowed it to work as a more effective mosquito repellent than DEET, the most common active ingredient used in commercial insect products.

Lavender offers protection against UV rays

Lavender essential oil has a natural SPF of 5, which although very low, does offer a small level of protection against the sun’s rays.

It is often used in homemade, natural sunscreen recipes (the NHS advise that you should use a sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30 to protect against UVB).

Lavender essential oil also works well at treating sunburn as it contains antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory qualities.

Soak in the refreshing and cooling properties of lemon oil

If you are feeling a little weary from the heat and need a quick and natural pick-me-up, then lemon essential oil is a reliable friend.

Inhaling or applying the oil to your skin can give you an instant energy boost and improve mental clarity – much needed if you are out and about for most of the day in the sun. Make your own lemon spray and spritz as needed, while also enjoying the bright and positive scent it leaves behind.

Lemongrass oil contains temperature-lowering properties

According to one study published in 2011, lemongrass oil is the best way to lower body temperature.

The same study also noted that it can work effectively as a vaporiser, making it a useful anti-cold and flu agent. Its natural properties have also seen it suggested as a potential therapeutic candidate for allergic and inflammatory diseases.

How to use cooling oils

There are a few different ways you can keep cool during the summer when using essential oils. For instance, you could try:

Topical Application

  1. If you are using cooling essential oils for skin for the first time, it is a good idea to complete a patch test. Add a small, diluted amount of the mixture to the inside of your elbow and cover with a plaster for 24 hours. If you do not see any signs of irritation, you should be fine to continue using the oil.
  2. For every 2-3 drops of your chosen essential oil, mix with one tablespoon of carrier oil such as almond oil or jojoba oil).
  3. Apply carefully to the skin and leave it to absorb.

If you are using citrus-based essential oils, check if they are phototoxic, as this may mean you will have to keep out of the sun for a few hours to avoid potential irritation.

Cooling Mist

Lavender oil and peppermint essential oil work well for this one:

  1. Mix 1/4 cup of unscented, alcohol-free witch hazel with 10 drops of your chosen essential oil inside a glass spray bottle.
  2. Screw on the lid and shake well.
  3. Spritz the solution on your skin as and when needed.


Diffusers are easy to use and can be a lifesaver on hot days:

  1. Add a few drops to an essential oil diffuser.
  2. Let the scent slowly rise to cool the air and create a refreshing environment.

Cold Compress

If you need something a little more direct, you could make your own cold press:

  1. Add a few drops of essential oil to a bowl of cold water.
  2. Soak a cloth in the mixture until it is lightly damp.
  3. Apply it to your forehead, neck, or other areas to cool down.

Final thoughts

Adding cooling oils to your summer routine could make all the difference on a sweltering hot day.

Whether you opt for topical application, diffusion, sprays or cold compresses, when the humidity is high, the likes of tea tree, lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus and peppermint essential oils could be just the thing to keep you cool.

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Medical Disclaimer

The content in this article is for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to take the place of medical advice. Please consult your personal physician for any advice or treatment regarding specific health questions. Neither the article editor, writer, nor the organisation of Nikura takes any responsibility for possible health consequences following the information given in any article. All readers should consult their physician before taking any advice given within these articles.

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