Essential oils for immune boosting – recipes and diffuser blends to guard against illness.

by Alison Angold CIDESCO ITEC

The best essential oils for immune boosting

There are many essential oils that can help the immune system in different ways, which we will discover in this article, but these oils are some of the best;

  • Eucalyptus
  • Clary sage
  • Thyme
  • Tea Tree
  • Myrrh
  • Bergamot
  • Chamomile
  • Grapefruit
  • Lemon
Essential oil bottles on a shelf.  Essential oils for immune boosting

Each of these essential oils has a varieties of properties or therapeutic action meaning that it can have an effect within the skin or the body.

Essential oils are the pure oils that are extracted from flower petals, leaves, fruit or herbs, and are so fine and pure that they have the ability to penetrate through the skin’s surface.

From here, they can enter the bloodstream and travel around the body to have an affect. Using essential oils for immune boosting, could be the natural way to give this system the strength it needs to prevent and protect against illness.

What is our immune system?

Our immune system is a collection of organs, vessels, and tissue in our body that help to prevent infection, either invading the cells or tissues, or preventing infection from getting worse.  If there is an infection present in the body, then these components are able to fight together to help stop the infection spreading, helping it not to get worse, or stop it in in its tracks.

If we are well and healthy our immune systems usually works well on its own – that’s not to say we will never get ill – but should have minimal illness’s, or minimal symptoms of an illness.

If our bodies are more unhealthy or congested; poor diet, poor fluid intake, over-under weight, stress, poor elimination, emotionally stressed,  etc, then our immune system will struggle to keep infection or illness at bay – because the body struggles to fight illness, pathogens thrive in the body when it is weak, tissues can begin to degenerate  and our usual immune responses, are weakened.

How can essential oils help boost the immune system

Many essential oils are antibacterial, antiviral or antiseptic, meaning they have the ability to reduce or remove bacteria, virus or infection.

Other oils, work at strengthen particular areas of the body – so we want to look for oils that can target these areas or organs so that they are revitalised and kept healthy, and better equipped to fight of infection when needed.

Certain oils have good detoxifying abilities, so these are ideal at cleansing a congested body, which will in turn strengthen the immune system to cope better with illness or infection.

Stress and anxiety can have a detrimental effect on the immune system, so using essential oils to relieve the symptoms of stress can have a knock-on effect of boosting the immune system.

How to use essential oils to boost immunity

Massage oil

Creating a body massage oil is a great way to use essential oils to boost immunity.  You can produce a tailor-made blend to use regularly.  Applying essential oils topically, means that they are absorbed into the skin, reaching the blood stream and able to have an effect.


Inhaling the oils by way of a diffuser or burner is an effective way of using essential oils to boost immunity when you feel you have an infection or illness coming on.  The molecules of the oils are absorbed through the membranes in the nose and here the aromas and the molecules themselves can have an effect.

Immune boosting essential oils

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Generally speaking these oils have a good all round effect at boosting immunity and strengthening the system as a whole;


As well as being antiviral and antiseptic, eucalyptus helps stimulate the body’s immunity against infection.  A distinctive aroma that you really feel is having a positive effect on your body!  Great for inhalation but can be used in small amounts in massage oils too.

Clary Sage

An antiviral oil, that strengthens the immune system.  Useful for building up the immune system after detoxing or while convalescing after an illness. More about Clary sage here.


A great all round essential oil for boosting immunity, thyme is antiviral, antibacterial, antiseptic and helps stimulate the production of white blood cells, which is one of our bodies main defences against illness and infection.

Tea tree

Tea tree boosts the immune system, and can help shorten the length of an illness and helps the body fight back against illness and infection.


An antiseptic and anti-inflammatory oil that is good for all infections, especially associated with the respiratory system.


A wonderful, light citrus oil that is not only antiviral and antiseptic, but has an overall strengthening effect on the immune system. See more of Bergamots wonderful properties here.


Chamomile stimulates the whole immune system, and due to its light fragrance, is a good oil to create blends.


A wonderful smelling oil, that helps to stimulate immunity to strengthen the body against illness and infections.


Another essential oil to boost immunity by stimulating the production of our protective white blood cells.

Essential oil Recipes for immune boosting

Use these blends on a regular basis to keep your immune system, and therefore your health, in tip-top condition! Massage into the body in the place of your usual body lotion, or add a small amount of the oil to your body lotion daily. Blend together in a tinted amber bottle. For more instructions and information on blending, read here.

50ml Sweet almond oil, 8 drops Bergamot, 6 drops Clary sage & 6 drops Grapefruit

50ml Sweet Almond oil, 8 drops Thyme, 6 drops Chamomile & 6 drops Lemon

Alternatively, this gorgeous E’spa, ready blended Fortifying body oil, is rich with nourishing body oils and strengthening essential oil and is ideal to use when you are feeling run down or in of a boost.

Diffuser blends for immune boosting

Use these blends in a diffuser or burner, to inhale the benefits of essential oils to boost immunity. These are ideal to use when warding off illness’s. All these blends smell amazing – so refreshing, with a medicinal note!

Eucalyptus, thyme & grapefruit

Tea tree, bergamot & lemon

Myrrh, tea tree & grapefruit

Detoxifying the immune system essential oils

If you have been feeling unwell, or you feel your digestion/elimination process is not great, or you know you have been leading an unhealthy lifestyle, use these oils to aid in the detoxification process within your body.  They can help the release of unwanted waste and toxins in the body, relieve water retention and treat digestive conditions such as constipation, irritable bowel syndrome.  By detoxing of all the unwanted waste, your body can begin to recover and the immunity is strengthened.

Rosemary – rosemary acts as a diuretic so helps to flush out excess fluid in the body.

Juniper – another diuretic essential oil, which will help to flush out excess fluids.

Eucalyptus – this essential oil is a depurative oil, which means that it helps flush out impurities and toxins from the body

Fennel – fennel is a great oil for promoting a detox process in the body, as it helps to cleanse the kidneys, cleans out the intestines, relieves digestive issues such as constipation and generally detoxifies the body.

Lemon – A good all round oil for detoxifying the body

Detoxifying the immune system recipes

Create your own massage oil blend to use on a regular basis to help to begin to detoxify your system. Or alternatively, buy a ready made detox oil. E’spa is a fantastic spa brand that uses essential oils as the base in all their products. The products smell amazing and have great, effective benefits.

50ml Sweet almond oil, 4 drops Eucalyptus, 3 drops Juniper, 5 drops Lemon, 5 drops Grapefruit

Fighting against infection – antibacterial & antiviral essential oils

All these oils have antiviral and antibacterial properties, so use these oils, during cold and flu season, if you have been in contact with an unwell person, or if you begin to feel run down or unwell.  These oils all complement each other so most blend well together, but see below for specific blends.

  • Bergamot
  • Eucalyptus
  • Lemon
  • Lemongrass
  • Niaouli
  • Pine
  • Tea Tree
  • Thyme

Antiviral/antibacterial diffuser blends

Bergamot, eucalyptus, lemon & thyme

Lemongrass, niaouli, bergamot & thyme

Tea tree, lemon & lemongrass & pine

Another alternative for antiviral and antibacterial blends are to use an essential oil inhaler tube to carry with you.  These allow you to create blends and transport them safely with you wherever you go!  Ideal for preventing infection and illness on the go!

Essential oils with a diffuser on a shelf.  Essential oils for immune boosting

Stress relieving essential oils

Stress and anxiety can have a detrimental effect on our immune system.  So, by treating and alleviating the symptoms of stress and promoting a calmer environment within ourselves, we can help to boost our immunity and allow our body to have a better response to infection and illness.

Lavender – a great all round essential oil, that not only has antiviral, bactericidal and antiseptic properties, but also helps the body de-stress and relax.

Basil – basil is an uplifting and warming oil and good for lifting stress and depression.

Petitgrain – this essential oil soothes anxiety and tension, and helps relieve physical problems relating to stress; rapid heartbeat and rapid breathing.

Geranium – lifts the spirits and relieves the symptoms of anxiety and depression, stress.

Neroli – relieves stress related conditions, especially anxiety and insomnia

Stress relieving recipes

Use these oils either to massage into the skin or to use in an indulgent relaxing bath.

25ml sweet almond oil, 25ml avocado oil, 8 drops lavender, 6 drops clary sage, 6 drops neroli

25ml sweet almond oil, 25ml sunflower seed oil, 8 drops petitgrain, 6 drops geranium, 6 drops bergamot

Alternatively, this E’spa Soothing Bath Oil, is rich with Sandalwood, Geranium & Frankincense, to allow the body to relax and unwind.

Stress relieving diffuser recipes

Lavender, basil & neroli

Petitgrain, frankincense, geranium

Lavender, Melissa, sandalwood

Another alternative for antiviral and antibacterial blends are to use an essential oil inhaler tube to carry with you.  These allow you to create blends and transport them safely with you wherever you go!  Ideal for preventing infection and illness on the go!

3 essential oils on a shelf with a burner

Buying guide

Always store your blended essential oils in tinted bottles like these.

Sweet Almond oil – an ideal base for any essential oil blend.

Avocado oil – so nourishing and hydrating for the skin, a good alternative to nut & seed oils.

Sunflower seed oil, contains nourishing ingredients as well as anti-inflammatory properties.

A diffuser is a great way to benefit from essential oils – this Neom one is expensive, but works beautifully.

A burner, like this is a simple and pretty way to warm essential oils for inhalation.

For inhalation on the go, these inhaler tubes are ideal. Add in your chosen essential oils, pop it in your pocket or handbag, and off you go. Inhale the aroma’s as and when needed.

Just one of the essential oils for immune boosting, suggested in this article. All essential oils can be purchased through this link.

About the Author
Alison Angold is a fully qualified (certified) beauty therapist, massage therapist, and aromatherapist from the UK. She has over 25 years of experience in this industry and has worked in a variety of beauty salons, spa’s as well as running her own successful beauty and massage business. Her career has allowed her to treat many, many clients, with skincare concerns, medical conditions, and a whole variety of other ailments and issues, which has enabled her to work closely with essential oils, prescribing specific blends for these clients to help with these conditions. Her qualifications in the use of essential oils and aromatherapy, allow her to share this knowledge with others, in a safe, reliable way.