Top 10 Essential Oils for Sore Throat and Antibacterial Recipes

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While there are many steps you can take to prevent cold, essential oils for sore throat (and other ailments) should always be part of your arsenal.

During the winter season, it’s almost inevitable that someone in your family will catch a cold. So it’s always a good idea to be prepared.

The use of essential oils for therapeutic purposes is not something new. Nowadays, there are more natural quality products in stores available to you.

Likewise, essential oils used for aromatherapy and medicinal purposes must meet a series of requirements and high-quality standards.

For example, these oils are 100% pure extracts from natural sources and are properly biochemically defined (in which molecule concentrations are known).

Thus, they’re not only used as scents at an olfactory level; they are also suitable for oral and topical application on the skin.

In any case, and before you try them out, consult with your health professional to avoid allergies and other potential contraindications.

We all know that over-the-counter drugs can help relieve colds and stuff. But in case you want to stick with good old natural home remedies, then stay with us; we’ll show you the best alternatives.

Here are the 10 best essential oils for sore throat

essential oils for sore throat

1- Peppermint essential oil

This is one of the most popular essential oils for sore throat being used today. It’s been shown to have an antimicrobial agent that fights oral pathogens responsible for causing colds and other illnesses.

In addition to its antimicrobial properties, peppermint oil contains menthol, an active ingredient in most cough drops and throat lozenges. Peppermint is also a natural decongestant, meaning it can help with the stuffy nose when it’s diffused in the air.

Suggested use for peppermint essential oil

Use an essential oil diffuser to disperse it in your home. If you don’t have one, place a pot of water on the stove over low heat and add several peppermint oil drops.

In addition to being a remedy for sore throat, inhaling its vapors can also help relieve chest congestion.

Furthermore, peppermint oil can also be used as a gargle to help relieve pain. Put a few drops in a glass of warm water, with or without salt, and gargle gently for up to a minute. Be sure to spit and rinse when you are finished.

Alternative uses for peppermint oil

  • Peppermint oil is ideal for aromatherapy
  • Topical application for muscle pain relief
  • Gargle with peppermint oil mixed with water to help with bad breath and support tooth decay

2- Ginger essential oil

essential oils for sore throat

Used as a natural expectorant, one of ginger’s main characteristics is its power to fight and bring up mucus and phlegm. Likewise, ginger oil relieves nasal congestion, discomfort, and infections.

How to use ginger oil?

  • Add two drops of oil to a cup of your favorite tea (we recommend a fresh lemon infusion with honey), up to 2 times a day
  • Apply topically to the chest. If your skin is a little sensitive, use a vegetable oil base, such as almond

3- Rosemary essential oil

Rosemary oil relieves the most common respiratory disorders: cough, asthma, sinusitis, and bronchitis. Mixed with eucalyptus, it is best for respiratory issues.

A study published in The Wall Street Journal in 2013 found that rosemary oil is very effective against drug-resistant bacteria. It allows for cough dissipation, congestion, and colds when traditional medicine cannot go any further.

4- Basil essential oil

Basil oil is known to diminish inflammation due to allergies. A study published in the Microbiology Journal of Germany in 1997 found that five basil oil varieties showed potent antimicrobial activity against most of the tested bacterias.

  • To reduce coughing and congestion from allergies, add a drop of basil oil to soups or salad dressings
  • You can also aid the respiratory system by diluting two to three drops of basil oil in equal parts of coconut oil, and then applying that mixture topically to the temples, chest, and back of the neck

5- Eucalyptus essential oil

Eucalyptus leaves possess strong anti-bacterial qualities that can help stimulate the immune system and shorten the cold duration.

Eucalyptus can also be found as the leading ingredient in conventional cough and cold products to relieve congestion with additional analgesic properties.

Along with many others, these benefits make eucalyptus one of the best essential oils for a sore throat to keep in your cabinet.

Suggested use for eucalyptus oil

Because eucalyptus helps with congestion and sore throat, it is best to use it as an inhalant. It can be mixed with other oils and diffused to create a pleasantly scented mist for breathing or mixed into a pot of boiling water and inhaled by mouth.

You can also mix it with shea butter and coconut oil to rub on the chest and help with congestion.

Alternative uses for eucalyptus oil

  • Mix the oil in a spray bottle to use as a disinfectant cleaner
  • Inhaling eucalyptus oil can also bring asthma relief
  • The pleasant smell of eucalyptus makes it an excellent choice for aromatherapy

6- Thyme essential oil

This culinary herb can also be used as a home remedy for sore throat. Its antimicrobial properties are known to reduce harmful household pathogens that can weaken the immune system.

essential oils for sore throat

Thyme essential oil is not only used in “all-natural household cleaners” but can also be applied for soothing muscle spasms caused by coughing. (which is the source of sore throat.)

Suggested use for thyme essential oil

Mix thyme oil with a carrier oil (the best is coconut oil) for massaging the chest. This will help relieve congestion and sore throat. Also, you can add it to a diffuser and allow thyme oil to air out.

Alternative uses for thyme oil

  • Its disinfectant properties make it an excellent household cleaner
  • Treat minor wounds and skin conditions using thyme oil as an antiseptic
  • Stimulate hair growth and relieve dandruff by adding a few drops of thyme oil to your shampoo or conditioner

7- Tea tree essential oil

The antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory aspects of this essential oil help reduce the pain and prevent the spread of harmful bacteria that can significantly reduce cold durations.

The pleasant aroma of tea tree oil will guarantee a soothing and relaxing effect.

Suggested use for tea tree oil

Tea tree oil is best used as an inhalant. Add a few drops to a humidifier or a pot of boiling water on the stove. It helps if you gently inhale the steam vapors as they rise from the source.

tea tree

It can also be used as an antiseptic and topical pain reliever. Mix with a carrier oil, or use shea butter and coconut oil to create a rubbing ointment on your chest or around your nostrils.

Alternative uses for tea tree essential oil

  • The strong aroma of tea tree oil makes it ideal for aromatherapy
  • It makes an excellent insect repellent

8- Lemon essential oil

Have you ever had a cup of tea with lemon to soothe a sore throat during a cold? This remedy has been passed on for centuries because lemon juice contains astringent properties that help reduce inflamed throat tissue.

Lemon essential oil possesses antioxidant properties that can help prevent or eliminate bacterial infections and viruses.

Suggested use for lemon essential oil

While you can add lemon oil to your diffuser or a pot of water over low heat, it is best to use it as an ointment for congestion or ingestion.

The best way to ingest lemon oil is to put a few drops in a little warm water with honey to relieve a sore throat.

Alternative uses for lemon oil

  • Use lemon essential oil as wood furniture polish
  • Disinfect your kitchen and keep a fresh scent by adding a few drops of lemon oil to your regular cleaner
  • It serves as a stain-free dish detergent

9- Clove essential oil

Clove oil contains natural analgesic agents that relieve aches and pains. Furthermore, it’s been shown to reduce the likelihood of catching the flu.

This makes clove essential oil not only good for fighting sore throats, but also for general cold and flu symptoms.

Suggested use for clove essential oil

Add a couple of drops to an ounce of water and place it in a small spray bottle for an “all-natural throat spray.”

Because this oil is very potent, it is best to start with smaller amounts until you find what works best for your body.

Alternative uses for clove oil

  • Clove oil is one of the oldest natural remedies for indigestion and nausea
  • To use as an anti-inflammatory, add to a carrier oil such as almond or coconut oil and rub into the affected area
  • In small amounts, clove essential oil can be used as an effective method for toothache relief

10- Cypress essential oil

Cypress essential oil can eliminate nasal congestion and the accumulation of mucus (phlegm) in the lungs. It’s highly valued for its ability to support the respiratory system and fight infections.

Its antispasmodic properties can treat respiratory ailments such as coughs and nasal congestion due to colds, bronchitis, and asthma. A British study published in 2004 found that camphene, a component in cypress oil, inhibited nine different bacterias’ growth.

Essential oils for sore throat: BONUS

cypress oil

Mixing and using essential oils for other ailments

The anti-infectious and immunostimulant properties of certain essential oils are beneficial for fighting repeated infections; without damaging the intestinal flora.

Let’s see a few examples:

Thyme essential oil is ideal for reducing inflammation and reducing throat discomfort.


  • Take 2 drops of thyme essential oil with honey, 3 times a day for 5 days

For children 3 to 6 years old, make the following mixture:

  • 1 ml of thyme essential oil
  • 1 ml of tea tree essential oil
  • 1 ml of rosewood essential oil
  • 7 ml of almond vegetable oil
  • Apply 5 drops of the mixture to the neck 4 times a day

6-12 years old:

  • 1 drop of thyme essential oil with a little honey, 3 times a day for 5 days

To relieve yeast infections (fungal infection):

Take two capsules of oregano essential oil (Origanum compactum), preferably with meals, 3 times a day for 10 days.

Apply 10 drops of the following mixture to the chest and back, 5 times a day for at least 3 days:

  • 3 ml of tea tree essential oil
  • 3 ml of ravensara essential oil
  • 1.5 ml of laurel essential oil

Children 3 to 10 years old:

  • Apply 5 drops mixed with 5 drops of almond vegetable oil on the chest and back, 4 times a day for 3 days

When the first signs of herpes labialis show up, do the following:

1 to 2 drops of the following mixture should be applied every hour to the affected area or where the sensation is felt.

  • 1 ml of lavender essential oil
  • 1 ml of niaouli essential oil
  • 2 ml of ravensara essential oil
  • 1 ml of calendula vegetable oil

To improve general symptoms (headache, congestion, fatigue…) of sinusitis:

Apply a few drops of the following preparation on the forehead and repeat the application up to 8 times a day.

  • 1 ml of tea tree essential oil
  • 0.5 ml of lavender essential oil
  • 0.5 ml of peppermint essential oil

Massage with 2 drops of the following mixture into the ear, 3 times a day:

  • 4 ml of apricot kernel oil
  • 1 ml of tea tree essential oil
  • 1 ml of niaouli essential oil
  • 1 ml of thyme essential oil
  • 1 ml of lavender essential oil

Children 3 to 6 years old:

  • A single drop in the form of massage around the ear, 3 times a day

The most effective essential oils for sore throat and other infections that should not be missing from your medicine cabinet are:

  • Tea tree: It has great immunostimulant power and is effective in treating respiratory infections and flu
  • Thyme: This oil is an excellent anti-infectious and immunostimulant. Perfect for treating angina
  • Ravintsara: Essential against viral infections. In winter, it prevents and treats flu and colds. It also treats annoying herpes quickly and effectively


essential oils

The ability of essential oils to cope with viruses and bacteria opens a way to treat all kinds of infections, which can sometimes be resistant to antibiotics; and without damaging the intestinal flora.

Its application is effortless, and the effects in some cases are really spectacular and very fast.

Good aromas that make you stronger

Essential oils have many therapeutic properties, but the best known and most studied are the antibacterial ones.

The first scientific studies were published in 1888 by the Pasteur Institute (Cadeac and Meunier), although their power against bacterial proliferation had already been known empirically for thousands of years.

The Egyptians were probably the greatest experts on the subject and demonstrated it with their mastery of complex embalming techniques.

A complement to antibiotics

The limitations that some antibiotics currently present against multi-resistant bacteria offer a window of opportunity to the forgotten essential oils, which have proven their effectiveness both preventively and therapeutically.

<<Anti-infective essential oils stimulate immunity and tone the body>>

But not only that: the anti-infectious and immunostimulant properties of certain molecules present in essential oils are highly effective in recurrent infections, such as bronchitis, candidiasis, etc.

Against infections

Essential oils with anti-infective properties are usually immunostimulants, toners, and body revitalizers. And they don’t damage the intestinal flora (something that happens with antibiotics).

The essential oils rich in phenols are oregano, savory, thyme, clove, and cinnamon leaf.

Oils rich in monoterpenes are tea tree, niaouli, laurel, rosewood, palmarosa, peppermint, thyme linalool, rosemary cineol.

Both of these types present a remarkable biological activity fighting infections. They are broad-spectrum anti-infectives; that is, they act on numerous bacteria, fungi, parasites, and, to varying degrees, viruses.

Nevertheless, essential oils rich in oxides also offer interesting antibacterial properties to treat numerous respiratory system infections.

In general, these essences are very safe in physiological and therapeutic doses, but they must be used carefully, especially if the oils are rich in phenols.

However, it’s always best not to take them on your own. Consult with a qualified professional who will guide you depending on your symptoms, pathology, and allergy profile.

essential oils for sore throat
Top 10 Essential Oils for Sore Throat and Antibacterial Recipes

Joel & The Wellness Team

Hey! Joel here; A graduate of Herbalism & Naturopathic Medicine School. My team and I are passionate about finding ways to improve our lives on a daily basis and truly believe in natural alternatives of doing so before seeking traditional medications. However, always consult with your Doctor/Physician first before taking any actions regarding your health. Stay Safe and Healthy!

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