The Best Essential Oils for Poison Ivy and How to Use Them

Calendula (Calendula officinalis)

Calendula, also called marigold, is a yellow flower that’s been used to sooth irritated skin for centuries. A 2011 review found that calendula helped with symptoms of contact dermatitis.

In addition, there’s lots of anecdotal evidence that calendula’s soothing properties help with redness, dryness, itching, and pain.

Chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile, Matricaria recutita)

Chamomile works similarly to calendula, which makes sense since they’re from the same plant family. While you might be familiar with drinking chamomile tea for relaxation, you can also use it in the form of an essential oil to calm down irritated skin.

A 2012 study suggests that applying a compress containing chamomile twice a day is more effective than applying a 1 percent hydrocortisone cream once a day for painful, itchy, or inflamed skin.

Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus)

Eucalyptus is a native Australian tree. A 2013 study found that eucalyptus was effective for rehydrating skin and preventing dryness. These properties may help during the later stages of a poison ivy rash, when your skin becomes dry and itchy.

Juniper (Juniperus, all species)

Juniper is another plant historically known for its skin-soothing properties, especially for itchy skin. This may be due to the presence of thujone, which a 2015 study found in juniper essential oil.

Thujone has antimicrobial properties, which can help to prevent infection, speed up healing, and reduce inflammation.

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Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)

Lavender is one of the most popular herbs, due to its soothing scent and medicinal properties. A 2012 study confirmed the anti-inflammatory effects of lavender essential oil on the cellular skin level.

In addition, a 2015 study concluded that lavender essential oil also has analgesic properties, meaning it relieves pain. This aspect makes lavender essential oil a good choice for painful, inflamed rashes from poison ivy.

Myrrh (Commiphora, all species)

Myrrh, a resin that can come from several types of trees, has long been used to treat pain and inflammation.


A 2014 animal study found that myrrh extract worked as both an analgesic and anti-inflammatory, which may help with the pain and swelling that often accompany poison ivy rashes in their early stages.

Peppermint (Mentha piperita)

Peppermint’s minty fragrance makes it another popular essential oil. Similar to lavender and myrrh, it’s considered to have both analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, a 2012 study found that peppermint oil reduced symptoms of itchy skin in pregnant women.

Pine (Pinus, all species)

Constituents of pine, such as pine tar, are common ingredients in soaps made to treat poison ivy rashes. While there’s plenty of anecdotal research that these pine-containing soaps work, there haven’t been any studies that prove pine’s effectiveness in treating poison ivy rashes.

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However, a 2012 study confirmed that essential oils of two types of pine had strong wound-healing properties, especially compared to other types of essential oils.

Tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)

Tea tree oil is one of the most effective essential oils for skin conditions. A 2013 review of tea tree oil’s uses in dermatology noted its use as a treatment for dermatitis. It may also speed up the healing of wounds, including rashes, and prevent itching.

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In addition, tea tree oil’s antimicrobial properties may help to prevent infection as your rash heals.


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Hello, my name is ThienBao. I am a freelance developer specializing in various types of code.