We all like something that smells great – a freshly baked bread, the earthy smell after the rain, or the smell of a fragrant English rose – because it does something to you, it makes you feel good. Aromatherapy utilizes this power of smell on a person by using fragrant essential oils extracted from plants and herbs to treat various ailments and conditions. Below is a list of popular aromatherapy herbs that have been used across the globe for this purpose.

Popular aromatherapy herbs



This herb is so widely used that its name always comes up in lists of anything related to scent and aroma. Lavender is an evergreen herb with silver-green, linear leaves and spikes, and blue or purple flowers. Even though it is mostly known and used for its calming effect, it is used for the treatment of many conditions from acne to depression.


Most varieties of mint are creeping plants and can be quite invasive in a normal garden. They have purple flowers and textured leaves that smell of spearmint. The extract of this herb is used for treating a large number of ailments like skin diseases, asthma and cough, dyspepsia and flatulence, nausea and migraine, and other conditions the list of which would fill this page.


The antiseptic, antioxidant properties of rosemary leaves have always been beneficially used for a long time. They have green, fragrant, needle-shaped leaves and blue flowers. The use of rosemary in aromatherapy includes for treatment of skin diseases, muscular pain, poor blood circulation, colds, headaches, infections, etc.


Thyme has, among its many uses, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and antiseptic properties. It also has scientifically proven immune-boosting ability. Considered a good lung-cleansing agent, it is also used to treat coughs. It relieves headaches and you can even use thyme for getting rid of your hangover.


These sweet-smelling herbs with white flowers are well-known for their sedative effects and used to make tea to help induce sleep. The extracts also have great soothing properties and are used for treating skin rashes. The essential oil of chamomile is also used as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory agent.


Inhaling the essential oil extract of basil helps refresh the mind and improves concentration. They are also used for treating depression and for easing severe headaches, as well as to aid digestion.


The essential oil is extracted from the leaves and flowers of the marjoram. The oil is generally used as an antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic agent. They are also used for treating chilblains, insomnia and stress-induced nervous tension.


Cypress is an evergreen tree with small, dark green leaves and characteristic brown bark. The essential oil is distilled from its leaves and cones. It is used in skin care, treatment of menopausal conditions, improvement of blood circulation, and as an astringent.


This citrus-fruit-bearing plant is often confused with bergamot mint. The oil of bergamot is used as an anti-depressant and as an anti-parasitic agent for treatment of insect bites and infectious diseases.


3The cardamom tree bears flowers with seeds from which the essential oil is extracted. The seeds themselves are very expensive as spices. They are widely used to treat nausea, coughs, headaches and as a digestive tonic. They are also used as an aphrodisiac.

The list above is only a small fraction of the total number of aromatherapy herbs known to man. The benefits of each plant can be as varied as the herbs themselves and recognize each plant is not an easy task for anyone. Fortunately, the extracts and essential oils are available in the market. So, if you want to try and enjoy the benefits of these aromatherapy herbs, you can easily do so, starting with a visit to the neighborhood market with the list we have compiled for you.