It’s no secret that pregnancy is a strain on a woman’s body. At times, I remember feeling like I was going to rip open if my baby grew one more inch, and all the extra weight caused seriously achy joints and muscles. Thus, there’s no better time to pamper yourself then during pregnancy! And since you’re saving money by not purchasing margaritas and merlot, why not splurge on a professional massage from time-to-time (or all the time)! It’s one of the simple pleasures that expectant mothers are actually allowed to indulge in.
Paired with the right essential oils, a prenatal massage can not only ease achy joints and muscles but also be an incredibly relaxing experience. However, not all essential oils are safe to use during pregnancy, as some are capable of causing uterine contractions. For precautionary reasons, all essential oils should be avoided during the first trimester.
If you’re unsure whether or not your massage therapist is using a massage oil that’s safe for you to use, most places will allow you to bring along your own oil. But if you can’t afford to, or you can’t find the time to escape your household long enough to go and get a professional massage, then I strongly suggest that you encourage your significant other to watch this YouTube video on how to perform a basic, prenatal massage! If they aren’t overly enthusiastic about the idea, remind them that you’re the one who’s sacrificing your body to bring their child into the world 😉
Essential oils SAFE for pregnancy (second and third trimesters):
Bergamot, Black Pepper, Roman Chamomile, Cypress, Eucalyptus, Frankincense, Geranium, Ginger, Grapefriut, Lemon, Lemongrass, Lime, Mandarin, Neroli, Patchouli, Peppermint, Rose Otto, Rosewood, Sandalwood, Sweet orange, Tea Tree, Tangerine, Ylang Ylang.
Essential oils to AVOID during pregnancy (partial list):
Arnica (homeopathic is fine), Basil, Birch (sweet), Bitter almond, Boldo leaf , Broom, Buchu, Calamus, Camphor (brown or yellow), Cassia, Cedarwood/thuja, Chervil, Cinnamon, Clary sage, Clove (bud, leaf or stem), Coriander, Costus, Deertongue, Elecampane, Fennel, Horseradish, Hyssop, Jaborandi leaf, Juniper berry, Melilotus, Mugwort, Mustard, Nutmeg, Origanum, Parsley, Pennyroyal, Pine (dwarf), Rosemary, Rue, Sage, Sassafras, Savin, Savory (summer), Tansy, Thyme red (large doses), Tonka, Wintergreen, Wormwood.
Note: I’m just going to say NO to Lavender, because it’s a tricky one and some strains are “allowed” while others aren’t. So to play it safe, just opt out of it for the next few months.
Essential Oil to Carrier Oil Dilution
For pregnant women, I’d suggest keeping the dilution at about 1% and use 6-7 drops per 30 ml of carrier oil.
DIY Massage Oil for Pregnancy
Making you own massage oil is as easy as DIY’s come!
To make a 60 ml (2 oz) bottle of massage oil, use 30 ml of each carrier oil (60 ml in total), sunflower, and sweet almond, and approx. 12-13 drops of your favorite combination of pregnancy-safe essential oils! Mine is lemon, bergamot, black pepper and sandalwood
The carrier oils that I use (sunflower and sweet almond) are light and have a very mild odour, which is why I like to use them in my DIY massage oil, however, you can substitute for whatever carrier oil you’d like. Fractionated coconut oil is also quite popular in massage oils, as is safflower and grape seed oil. And it doesn’t have to be a blend either – if sweet almond oil is all you have lying around from another DIY project, then just use a full 60 ml of that!
*Note: when topically applying citrus essential oils (like lemon, lime, neroli, grapefruit and bergamot) avoid sun exposure. Citrus can burn your skin in the sun.
How to Make My Personal Favourite DIY Massage Oil for Pregnancy
- 30 ml (1 oz) Sweet Almond Oil
- 30 ml (1 oz) Sunflower Oil
- 3 drops Lemon essential oil
- 3 drops Bergamot essential oil
- 3 drops Sandalwood essential oil
- 3 drops Black Pepper essential oil
How to Make a Generic DIY Massage Oil for Pregnancy
- 60 ml of carrier oil (aim for a light, mild-odour oil)
- 12-13 drops of (essential oil) pregnancy safe – see list above)