Enjoy benefits of lavender for sleep and see how to make relaxing DIY lavender sleep spray! The calming homemade pillow mist promotes relaxation and restful sleep. This easy aromatherapy recipe includes tips for sleep spray with and without essential oils and a sleepy time blend for kids slumber spray.
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DIY lavender sleep spray recipe
I don’t know about you but the last few months have been stressful and straining. I can handle stress relatively well but with one exception: sleep! Stress can take a toll on the quality of sleep. It’s no fun laying awake in bed with a busy mind, contemplating your worries and frustrations. Sounds familiar?
Well, the essential oil recipe I’m about to share today can help with that. My DIY lavender sleep spray is very calming, allowing you to slip into slumber smoothly, fight insomnia and enter relaxed, restorative sleep.
This homemade lavender pillow mist recipe smells so much better than store-bought, and it’s full of natural ingredients – no artificial fragrances, aerosols, or preservatives with this fragrant slumber spray.
Benefits of lavender for sleep
Fun fact: Lavender essential oil was the first oil I used. My mum bought me a small bottle when I had trouble sleeping as a teen.
I’ll admit that I was a little skeptical to try lavender at first, because I had no idea what to expect. Guess what? I put a few drops on my pillow and to my surprise, fell asleep easier and faster.
Since then, I do not only believe that essential oils work but can improve the quality of life. But let’s put anecdotal evidence aside, and look at was science has to say about lavender and sleep.
A study with ICU patients showed that the quality of sleep in patients was significantly improved after aromatherapy with lavender oil. The authors conclude that lavender essential oil is, in fact, beneficial for sleep and health. (source) Researchers studying the nervous system in women with insomnia came to similar conclusions. (source)
A study showed that continuous exposure to lavender has an anticonflict effect and significantly reduces anxiety and depression. (source)
Why does lavender help you sleep?
Lavender essential oil has a long history of therapeutic use and is a popular choice for relaxation, sleep and anxiety. And research backs this up. But how exactly does lavender improve sleep?
Linalool, a major constituent of lavender oil, produces a sedative effect and seems to interact with the neurotransmitter GABA to help quiet the brain and nervous system activity, reducing agitation, anger, aggression, and restlessness.
Ingredients for sleepy spray
How do you make lavender sleep spray? Now that we know more about the benefits of lavender for sleep, let’s explore the ingredients we need to make this natural slumber spray recipe:
- high-proof alcohol – Ideally, you want to use an odourless, high-proof alcohol, for example, perfumers alcohol, grain alcohol (Everclear, Century or Graves), or vodka.
- distilled water – Distilled water is best for DIY lavender pillow spray. Otherwise, use boiled, cooled tap water.
- lavender essential oil – Use a high-quality organic lavender essential oil for the best sleep spray.
- vegetable glycerin (optional) – Glycerin acts as a solubiliser, meaning the ingredient helps the essential oils and water mix better. It’s optional, and you can omit it.
Read my homemade room spray post to learn more about the role of each ingredient, where I go into more detail.
There is no need to unpack your entire essential oil collection for this easy pillow mist spray. Lavender essential oil on its own is all you need to create a fragrant and soothing lavender spray.
But if you feel adventurous, try the following lavender essential oil blends for sleep:
- nighty night: 17 drops lavender + 8 drops melissa + 5 drops neroli*
- sleep tight: 15 drops lavender + 7 drops chamomile + 7 drops marjoram sweet
- bedtime: 17 drops lavender + 8 drops mandarin + 5 drops ylang ylang
- twilight**: 12 drops lavender + 12 drops tonka bean absolute + 6 drops ylang ylang
*Neroli essential oil is one of the most comforting and calming oils, and if you have it, I highly recommended. But it’s also quite expensive. Sweet orange or mandarin are good alternatives for neroli.
**This scent combo was inspired by Lush’s Twilight body spray, which smells heavenly. Tonka bean absolute is a stable in natural perfumery, but you don’t see it used very often in DIY projects. Tonka bean has a warm, caramel-like scent that is incredibly comforting and relaxing.
Below, I also share a bedtime formula for kids and show how to make sleep spray without essential oils.
You only need a spray bottle and small funnel, no extra equipment required. The recipe is enough to fill one 4-oz / 120 ml spray bottle. Amber, blue, or ultraviolet glass bottles are best. A clear bottle or frosted bottle (like in the pictures), works too, but you have to follow the storage instructions below.
I used measuring cups to measure the liquid ingredients, but the use of those is optional. Since the ratio of alcohol to distilled water is 1:1, you can simply fill the spray bottle half with water and half with alcohol. Easy!
How to make DIY lavender sleep spray
How do you make lavender pillow spray? This calm sleep pillow mist spray recipe is not only easy, it’s also ready in less than 5 minutes. Let’s talk about the easy steps to making this lavender aromatherapy spray:
- Fill the alcohol, essential oils and glycerin (if using) to a spray bottle and shake.
- Then top off with distilled water. Shake until the liquids are blended.
How do you use lavender pillow spray?
Where to put lavender oil to help you sleep? There are several ways to use your homemade lavender sleep spray:
- Always shake the spray bottle before each use.
- Spritz a fine mist on your pillow or sheets before you sleep.
- You can also refresh the air in your bedroom with a few pumps of lavender spray.
- Another idea is to use this recipe as lavender body spray.
Less is more
You may want to add a lot of sleep spray thinking the effect will be more impactful. But the opposite is true.
At night, our body needs to rest, and our thoughts slow down. During this time, the brain is less responsive to the outside world. Having too much scent in the air can be a distraction, because the scent molecules are constant stimuli and keep the brain from entering deep sleep.
To prevent your body and nervous system from being overloaded, it’s safest to use only 1 to 2 pumps of sleep spray.
Sleep spray for kids
You can easily adapt this lavender spray for kids. Since children are more receptive to scents, lower the essential oil concentration. It’s best to cut the amount of essential oils in half when you make a DIY sleep spray for children. Of course, adults can use it too!
Here’s a sleepy time blend that is perfectfor getting your little ones ready for a good night of sleep:
- 7 drops lavender + 5 drops vanilla oleoresin + 3 drops marjoram sweet
Use the bedtime spray for kids only lightly. One spritz near the headboard or on the bedding is enough. For babies over 1 and small children, avoid the bed or cot but spritz in the air instead.
Lavender sleep spray without essential oils
The ability to detect odours varies from person to person. Even diluted, essential oils can be too intense for some. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the benefits of a homemade lavender sleep spray.
Enter lavender hydrosol. Hydrosols are a byproduct of steam distillation of plants, which is how most essential oils are made. They only contain trace amounts of the volatile oil (= essential oil) but also have other constituents in gentle plant water.
To make sleep spray without essential oils, simply fill lavender hydrosol and a small amount of alcohol into a spray bottle, and you’re done. The alcohol helps the aromatherapy spray dry faster and to preserve it better.
Of course, you can also create variations with hydrosols. I find that other hydrosol, such as chamomile, neroli, or rose, blend beautifully with lavender hydrosol.
Can I use the lavender spray while pregnant?
Yes, but it depends on where you are in your pregnancy. Here is what you need to know:
Experts suggest to avoid all essential oils in the first trimester as there is a small risk that they cause uterine contractions that may adversely affect the fetus.
Pregnancy can change the sense of smell, and pregnant women often become more sensitive and reactive to odours, especially in the first 13 weeks.
As I mentioned earlier, lavender is a mild essential oil and can have a calming effect on your body and mind. So if you are in your second or third trimester, you can give my essential oil spray recipe a try.
My best advice is to find those scents that make you feel calm and relaxed and avoid smells that ramp up nausea and other pregnancy symptoms. And proper dilution is a must.
Hydrosols are considered safe at any stage of pregnancy, so sleep spray with lavender hydrosol could be an option.
For more advice on using essential oils during pregnancy, consult a physician or health care provider.
Is the DIY sleep spray safe around pets?
If you have pets, it’s best to prepare this aromatherapy recipe exclusively with lavender essential oil. Lavender oil is generally safe for pets, including cats.
But remember that a pet’s sense of smell is much greater compared to a human’s, meaning they sense smell a lot more than you.
If you’re using this lavender spray with pets around, leave a door open so they can leave the room or open a window to provide ventilation.
Over to you!
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