The yarrow plant is found across most of the northern hemisphere and has been featured in traditional folk medicine for centuries. It is a flowering plant purportedly named after the hero Achilles and was used to treat wounds in ancient times. That is but one of many of the benefits and uses of yarrow essential oil.

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The yarrow plant is found across most of the northern hemisphere and has been featured in traditional folk medicine for centuries. It is a flowering plant purportedly named after the hero Achilles and was used to treat wounds in ancient times. That is but one of many of the benefits and uses of yarrow essential oil.

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Yarrow Essential Oil Benefits

Yarrow may seem like a small country flower, but it hosts a range of health benefits that have been documented since the Trojan War. It may help with keeping skin healthy and healing wounds, as well as reducing spasms in the digestive system, making this essential oil worth having in your collection.

1. Skin health

Healthy skin is the first defense the body has against outside infections. Many issues can injure the skin, from simple wounds to autoimmune diseases such as eczema that cause open sores and chronic pain. These conditions can be treated with prescribed medication, but the side effects can sometimes be as bad as the condition itself. Essential oils may be an alternative therapy. In 2017, a group of rats was treated with yarrow essential oil for the speed of wound healing. There was a reduction in the physiological markers of inflammation and fluid retention in the injured areas. (1) Yarrow may also reduce the pain associated with wounds and disease, allowing the body to heal more quickly.

2. Muscular and joint comfort

Muscle and joint discomfort can be as simple as pain from exercise, leaving us with minor aches throughout the day. The pain may even come from more severe conditions such as arthritis that can attack the joints and lead to chronic pain. Over the counter medications may provide temporary relief but are limited by how frequently they can be used. A 2018 study looked at pain reactions in mice and whether or not they were reduced by using yarrow essential oil. Due to several factors, such as yarrow having anti-inflammatory constituents, topical analgesic, and anti-spasmodic, the mice showed reduced writhing and paw licking. (2)

3. Calming

In a world of deadlines and working multiple hours, we can start to feel the effects of anxiety or even low mood. These feelings can have an impact on our work and personal relationships. Many times, these feelings are minor enough that they don’t require medication and can be relieved through choices. In 2012, researchers studied the calming effects of yarrow essential oil using mice and a series of tasks that mimic the physiological responses of stress and depression. Results showed that there was a lower level of stress in the mice who were exposed to yarrow essential oil, comparable to the effects of diazepam, a medication used to treat anxiety disorders, alcohol withdrawal, and muscle spasms. (3)

4. Digestive support

Everyone experiences digestive issues of some kind, experiencing cramping, bloating, and excessive gas. This may be caused by diet or, even more serious, diseases like irritable bowel syndrome. Gastric distress can be relieved by over the counter solutions, but they may present their side effects if used too frequently. Yarrow essential oil has been used in folk medicine to ease intestinal distress, and a study in 2015 observed its ability to calm the muscle spasms in the smooth muscles of a rat’s ileum, the muscle that makes up the intestines. The results showed that spasms were significantly reduced in the tissue where it was exposed to yarrow essential oil, making it effective in lowering the gut spasms that can cause pain with stomach upset. (4)

Yarrow Essential Oil Uses

The uses for yarrow essential oil have been documented for centuries in cultures where it grows abundantly. It has a use as a topical application for skin health as well as benefits in aromatherapy for affecting mood. Here are a few suggestions for using this oil in your everyday life.

Aromatic Uses

  • Combine 5 drops each of yarrow, wild orange, and lavender with distilled water in your diffuser. Use about 15-20 minutes before going to sleep to help wind down from your day.
  • Add 3 drops each yarrow, lavender, and chamomile to dried potpourri to create a centerpiece that releases a relaxing scent.
  • Add 8 drops each of yarrow, cedarwood, and nutmeg to the 4-ounce spray bottle. Top with distilled water to create a mist that can be sprayed in your home or office to promote a relaxing mood.

Topical Uses

  • Combine 1-2 drops to a teaspoon of carrier oil of your choice. Apply to minor skin injuries to help reduce redness and prevent infection of the wound.
  • Dilute 2 drops in skin-friendly oil such as jojoba and apply to your face and neck to promote healthy skin.
  • In a 2-ounce squeeze bottle, combine 5 drops each of yarrow, helichrysum, and peppermint with 8 drops copaiba. Fill with jojoba oil and mix well before applying to sore muscles for relief.

What is the Best Yarrow Essential Oil?

Yarrow is a common enough oil that it can be daunting to try and find the best possible product to use. And when counting on the benefits of an oil, quality does matter. To help you choose the best yarrow essential oil, we’ve researched the available brands and have narrowed the selection to the few listed below.

Plant Therapy Organic Blue Yarrow Essential Oil

This oil is independently tested to be free from synthetic chemicals and dyes, as well as GMOs, as it is listed under the company’s organic label. This particular oil has already been diluted for you using jojoba oil but should be diluted further. It does not include a KidSafe seal from the company, so caution is recommended around children.

Best for: Diffusing Around the House to Lift Mood


Florihana Organic Yarrow Essential Oil

This oil has been produced using a lower temperature distillation method, which may allow for the presence of more beneficial constituents in the final oil. It is made from plant material that is grown organically and independently tested to be free from synthetic substances such as dye or adulterants.

Best for: Massage Over Aching Joints


Edens Garden Yarrow Essential Oil

Sourced from plant material that is grown as organically as possible, this oil is then independently tested using gas chromatography to assure it is 100% therapeutic grade and free from any extraneous chemicals or fillers. This leaves just the woody scent that may help you wind down from a rough day.

Best for: Massage on the Abdomen for Digestive Relief


My Favorite Uses For Yarrow Essential Oil

It seems strange, but I was already familiar with yarrow even before I started using essential oils. As an avid reader, I’d come across references to it in historical health books as well as historical fiction, where the author tried to be as authentic as possible to natural remedies available in the time before modern medicine. It was eye-opening to find the rich history behind this plant and its essential oil.

I am always looking for oils to use in my ongoing treatment for depression and some anxiety. I use essential oils as a supplemental therapy to what my health care provider recommends since the medication doesn’t always alleviate every symptom. I often use yarrow in my office diffuser as a base note under chamomile and lavender for my most stressful days.

I also use yarrow in massage oil that is helpful for tension headaches, since I carry a lot of stress in my shoulders and neck. I can just feel the muscles tighten, and my shoulders hunch towards my ears as the day goes on. Applying this oil to my neck helps alleviate the pain and tension there.

Recommended Yarrow Oil-Based Products

1. Alaffia Everyday Coconut Shampoo and Body Wash with Yarrow Oil

Alaffia Everyday Coconut Shampoo and Body Wash - Babies and Kids, Gentle and Non-Irritating Support...
  • SHAMPOO & BODY WASH. Alaffia's nourishing, sulfate-free kids lemon...
  • GENTLE FOR DAILY USE. Gentle and non-irritating for all hair and skin...
  • COCONUT CHAMOMILE. A soothing, sweet and hydrating blend of creamy...

This product is a combination of a shampoo and body wash formulated just for kids. It includes skin-friendly oils such as coconut to help keep skin moisturized instead of over dried by cleansing agents. This can be especially beneficial for babies and children. Essential oils of chamomile and yarrow help keep the body clean by reducing the number of surface bacteria and may help treat areas of redness or swelling. Both oils are known for helping to treat skin conditions.


2. All Good Organic Lip Balm with Organic Yarrow

All Good Organic Lip Balm for Soft Smooth Lips - Calendula, Lavender, Olive Oil, Beeswax, Vitamin E...
  • ORGANIC - Our coconut flavor created with a blend of organic USDA...
  • SMOOTH & CREAMY - A deliciously soothing and creamy herbal infusion...
  • ALL GOOD INGREDIENTS - Made with an infusion of soothing herbs,...

Our lips seem to suffer most in the environment and can very easily become cracked and dry. Protecting your lips is as important as other areas of your skin, and a lip balm is an easy way to achieve this. This lip balm offers all-natural ingredients such as beeswax to help seal in moisture, which can help keep lips from cracking or peeling. Essential oils can reduce swelling and redness as well as helping to control the number of bacteria found on the surface of the skin.


Caution of Yarrow Essential Oil

  • Do not use yarrow essential oil if you are pregnant or nursing. There is a risk of miscarriage as yarrow may thin the blood.
  • Do not use if you are allergic to aspirin as yarrow oil contains salicylic acid.
  • Yarrow essential oil may interfere with medications used to treat the blood, such as thinners. Do not use if you take these types of medications.
  • Stop using yarrow oil 2 weeks before major surgery to prevent problems with bleeding.
  • Yarrow oil may interfere with the metabolization of certain medications as it can disrupt enzymes produced by the liver. (Tisserand and Young, 2014)
  • Avoid yarrow oil if you have allergies to plants in the Asteraceae family, which includes ragweed and goldenrod.
  • Never apply yarrow oil directly to the skin. Always dilute with a carrier oil to prevent skin sensitivities.
  • Yarrow essential oil may increase the sleepiness associated with prescribed sedative medications.
  • Due to a possible diuretic effect, yarrow may interfere with how the body metabolizes lithium.
  • Always choose quality yarrow essential oil from reputable suppliers.


I hope you enjoyed learning about yarrow essential oil. As a healing herb that has been around for centuries, it may certainly have an impact on your life as well. Please be sure to share this information with anyone who may be looking for ways to boost their mood or just get some relief from digestive issues. Be sure to leave your comments and let us know what you think.