essential oil blends to harmonize emotions




Many may be familiar with the plant-based herbal formulas of Classical Chinese Medicine. These water-based, formulas, often utilizing 6-10 herbs, give us one of our most important healing tools in Chinese Medicine.

Less well-known are Chinese Medical essential oil blends, which can also be used for their healing effect. Essential oils provide intense, targeted treatments; the strong oils are to be used very sparingly and should be applied to the body in ‘micro’ doses.

I’ll share a selection of essential oil blends I've designed to treat various psycho-emotional states and disorders. The designs are based on information gathered from Dr. Jeffrey C Yuen's workbook Materia Medica of Essential Oils (Based on a Chinese Medical Perspective).

This information includes the Note of the oil (top, middle or base), Taste, Nature (temperature), Channel Affinities, Actions and Contraindications. Many of the pairings and combinations of oils follow suggestions found in Dr. Yuen’s lectures and seminars on the therapeutic use of essential oils.

Featured Blend for Fall '19

'COLORS' – Neroli (Orange Blossom), Lavandin, Fir and Sandalwood

Tonify Lung Qi, Tonify Spleen, Assist Kidney in grasping the Qi, Clear damp-heat and Regulate Liver Qi.  Use for migraine headaches that come when the weather is changing. Apply small amount w/the tip of a toothpick to: LU-5, LU-7, Sp-6, Ki-3, ST-36, PC-6, LR-3, CV-12 (choose 2-4 points; rotate selection); Contraindications: caution w/empty Yang.

Take care in application - essential oils may stain clothing or damage synthetic fibers. Do not apply essential oils directly to clothing.

Featured Blend for Winter '19-'20

'REALM OF THE SENSES' - Rosemary (Verbenone), Marjoram, Clary Sage and Lavender.

Eliminate phlegm, Balance Lung/Kidney relationship, Descend Stomach Qi and Liver Yang; Clears Liver Yang rising; treats winter migraines; panic attacks, fright and paranoia. Apply small amount w/the tip of a toothpick to: HT-5, PC-7, PC-6, LR-14, LR-3, GB-34, LR-5, LR-1 or CV-2.  (Choose 3 or 4 points) Use 6% dilution of Marjoram (50%), Rose (20% and Frankincense (30%) for feelings of loneliness and isolation in winter. Contraindications: Asthma, Cancer, Pregnancy

Featured Blend for Spring '20

'ROSE-COLORED GLASSES' – Clary Sage, Lavender, Rose, Tumeric and Vetiver

Open the Senses and Calm the Shen Clears Liver Fire and Cools the Blood; Subdues Wind and Nourishes Yin; Opens the Portals and Releases Fear.  Apply small amount w/the tip of a toothpick to: LR-2, LR-3, PC-6, SP-4, KI-6, KI-3, CV-14; (2 - 4 points; rotate point selection); Contraindications: pregnancy, cancer, pre-pubescent children; hypothyroidism

Take care in application - essential oils may stain clothing or damage synthetic fibers -

Featured Blend for Summer '20

'UPLIFTING' – Neroli (Orange Blossom), Orange Peel, and Sandalwood

Clear Heart Fire and Transform Damp to uplift mood; Descend Stomach Qi to promote peristalsis.  Benefit insomnia, anxiety, restlessness and hypertension; Regenerate cells (Neroli) and promote production of white blood cells (Sandalwood).  Apply small amount w/the tip of a toothpick to: HT-7, PC-6, ST-36, SP-9, CV-3, CV-14, GB-34; (2 - 4 points; rotate point selection); Contraindications: none.

Take care in application - essential oils may stain clothing or damage synthetic fibers -

More about using essential oil blends

Essential oils are very concentrated and have a strong effect on the body. Use the oils sparingly. Overuse of the blends can lead to unpleasant side effects such as nervousness or insomnia.

Take breaks when using essential oils medicinally. For example, apply essential oils 3 days in a row on 2 - 4 of the suggested points and then take a break for 3 days. Do not apply the oils directly to clothing or on the skin underneath synthetic undergarments; essential oils may stain fabrics and damage synthetic fibers.  


Some essential oils stimulate the production of estrogen and therefore are contraindicated for use in pregnancy and in medical conditions such as breast or prostate cancer. Estrogenic oils are also contraindicated for pre-pubescent children. The contraindications are noted for each formula; be sure to check and follow the guidelines.

Chinese medical view of emotions

Chinese Medicine recognizes a relationship between our body’s organs and our emotions. In Chinese Medicine theory the Heart is related to Joy (or excess Joy, Mania), the Lung to Grief, the Spleen to Worry, the Liver to Anger and the Kidney to Fear. Chinese Medicine sees the experience of emotions as a natural aspect of life. Daoists say emotions direct the unfolding of one's Curriculum (Karma); positive and negative emotions both play a role in directing our movement in life.

Emotions become “emotional disorders” when vectors of an emotion become constrained (often amplified by Heat or Fire) and unable to naturally disperse or transform due to accompanying patterns of Qi Stagnation, Dampness and/or Blood Stasis. These static physiological patterns can create a kind of stasis of the emotions, limiting productive social interactions and the development of a flexible, innovative sense of self. A sensitive and attuned use of high quality essential oils may help shift held emotional patterns.

How do the essential oil blends work?

Essential oils, or aroma therapies, work on the level of our perceptions, through the sensory portals. Other therapies that work in a similar way are color therapy, sound therapy (music, singing, chanting or mantras) and therapies based on touch and movement. These therapies change our perceptions about the world and our relationship to the world. The essential oil aromas have an effect on the brain and through the autonomic nervous system, an effect on the organs.  Or, to express the functioning through the language of Chinese Medicine, each oil has a specific signature and effect on the body's Qi, Blood, Fluids, Yin and Yang. 

Suggested Use:

apply a small amount of oil to 2 to 4 acupuncture points suggested for a blend. Use the clean tip of a toothpick as an applicator to protect the oil from contamination. If symptoms of overuse develop (headache, respiratory irritation, nervousness, insomnia) discontinue use until symptoms subside.  Explore and enjoy the essential oil blends; remember - less is more!

Copyright RoseAnne Spradlin 2018 Updated Nov 2018


Remember these cautions when using essential oil:

Use the oils sparingly.

Do not apply oils directly to clothing; be cautious when applying essential oils to your body underneath your clothing.  Essential oils  may damage fabrics with synthetic fibers, particularly if those garments are dried in dryers with high heat.