Have you ever had these painful, itchy, oozy blisters on your lips, nose or elsewhere?

If your answer is yes, I have bad news for you. You might be genetically prone and vulnerable to cold sores or fever blisters. Cold sores are a type of viral infection caused by the contagious herpes simplex virus (HSV).

Chances are you will occasionally be suffering due to these disgusting-looking blisters for the rest of your life! [1]

Hey now, do not worry. I will be giving you the best suggestion ever. I will tell you, how to use essential oils for cold sores.

These blisters are not treatable. But they are manageable using remedies. Doctors prescribe antiviral cream and medications to take orally. But, the best of the remedies at our disposal is the essential oil remedies.

The essential oil remedies can help you out with these weepy culprits because nothing keeps cold sores at bay like the essential oil.[2]

Today I will be talking about:
• What are cold sores?
• What are essential oils?
• How does essential oil fight cold sores?
• 19 essential oils for cold sores home remedy.
• Precautions while using essential oils for cold sores.

What are Cold Sores?

Cold sores or fever blisters have nothing to do with cold or fever. Cold sores are caused by HSV viral infection and take up to 10 days to recover naturally.[3]

Once you have a cold sore, you become incredibly contagious. People coming in contact with you can get these too if they are prone to HSV. So, no kissing your loved ones until the yellow crusts over the blisters fall off completely. [3]

But, the thing is not all of us are vulnerable to HSV virus. Only 90% of the people get affected by it. If you are blessed, you will get it once, and your body will grow an immune system against it. [4]

The cold sores can make you severely self-conscious and turn you into a PR nightmare.

Again, make people around you exposed to HSV. Worry not, I am not suggesting you go into exile as soon as you have one. I am
suggesting; you use essential oils for cold sores.

Take these home remedies to save yourselves the pain, itchiness, and irritation. By taking these, you can protect others from the risk of getting the sore as well. [5]

Related: 12 Home Remedies to Get Rid of Cold Sores Naturally

What is essential Oil?

If you are somebody whose olfactory nerves are working correctly, you must have smelled the beautiful aroma or fragrance of any flowers, fruits or plants now and then. [6]

These smells are naturally occurring volatile aromatic compounds. We find these in different parts of the plant, say, seed, stem, flower, kernel, root, leaves, flowers or any other part. [7]

These aromatic compounds are called essential oil and are volatile. Due to the volatile nature of this oil, if stored, these oils start losing their fragrances gradually. [6,7]

Scientists have identified around 3000 different types of essential oils until this day. Most of these are helpful for humans in different ways.
We use a number of these for DIY skin, hair care products, and various home remedies. [8]

Also Read: 10 Research- Backed Essential Oil Remedies for Back Pain + Directions

19 Essential Oils for Cold Sores

The HSV causes all sorts of cold sores, so the anti-viral qualities of different essential oils help to fight the symptoms and severity of the situation. In some cases, the use of essential oil can reduce the number of days, the infection lasts. [3]

In most cases, using essential oils are better than using antibiotics, as essential oils have fewer side effects.

Here are 19 essential oil remedies which work miracles while managing cold sores:

1. Tea Tree OilTea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil contains antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. It can cut off the lifespan of a cold sore to only one or two days. [9]
You need to act fast for the best result. You should use tea tree oil in the very early stage of your infection, and it just might make the sore smaller, less itchy and less noticeable. [10]

You need to take 1 or 2 drops of diluted essential oil on a clean cotton ball or swab and dab it gently on the sore. [9,10]

Apply the oil three to 4 times a day and every time dispose of the cotton ball or swab as soon as you are done with it. Also, make sure, the cotton swab doesn’t come to contact with any other part of your skin. [11]

Also Read: Tea Tree Oil for Scabies : 6 Home Remedies + Tips

2. Lavender OilLavender Oil

Lavender oil is something that you can use for different types of skin problems, like itch and inflammation. [12]

While, in case of cold sores, the lavender oil does not have any antibacterial properties, but it can help with the pain and inflammation.

Different studies have shown lavender has the quality of reducing pain and inflammation. [13] If you haven’t used lavender oil ever before, you should dilute the oil in a carrier oil and then apply 1 or 2 drops using a cotton swab as I said for tea tree oil. [13]

After using once, if you feel like this oil creates no irritation on your skin, you can use it without diluting it furthermore.

Also Read: 11 Health Benefits of Lavender Oil That You Should Know

3. Peppermint oilPeppermint-Oil

Two types of HSV that can infect your skin, simplex type 1 and type 2. Peppermint oil helps fight both the viruses. It can kill the active virus. [14]

But unlike tea tree essential oil, you should not use the peppermint essential oil on open sores. You should wait for the wound to be a little less fresh and then use diluted peppermint oil on the sore.[12,13]

Using it daily will ease the sore by fighting with the Herpes Virus. [12,13,14]

4. Lemon Balm OilLemon Balm Oil

We also know lemon balm oil as Melissa essential oil.

This is one of the most popular and widely used essential oils for cold sores. As I have mentioned earlier, cold sores have nothing to do with cold or fever. But it has some triggering factors, like physical or mental stress, period or flu can cause the outbreak of
sores. [15]

Melissa oil is a member of the mint family. Applying this essential oil on cold sores eases the sore.

Daily use can also help you prevent frequent breakouts of sores. [16]

You can apply this essential oil like the other oils, i.e., externally or mix 1 or 2 drops of it with your herbal tree and drink weekly. [13] Some studies show that this particular oil prevents the virus from penetrating the cells.

Apply some of the oil on your lips or drink some herbal tea with the oil when you feel the first tingle of the sore. Chances are, the sore will not develop at all. [17]

5. Eucalyptus oilEucalyptus oil

This essential oil has an anti-inflammatory quality that will soothe your sore and can alleviate the pain.

This oil has a very soothing and calming fragrance that feels good during a cold. If you have a cold sore inside your nose, you can opt for this essential oil. [12]

The antibacterial quality will help you against the herpes simplex 1 type virus. If your cold sore feel uncomfortable, you can use this essential oil to calm the uncomforting and noticeably reduce the sore within a few days. [13]

You should dilute this essential oil mixing with some light carrier oil like olive oil and then use it. But you should keep the use of this oil limited to 4 times a day.

6. Chamomile oilChamomile oil

It would be wise if you start using chamomile essential oil, as soon as you feel the first sign of cold sore.

This essential oil decreases the amount of herpes absorption into the skin at a different rate than antibiotics. Moreover, this oil fights the drug-resistant strains of herpes and helps to soothe the skin when applied. [18]

Using the diluted version of this essential oil will alleviate the pain and heal the sore quickly.

7. Clove oilClove oil

Clove essential oil is widely favorite as an analgesic. We have known it as a natural pain reliever for a long time. [14]

Clove essential oil is very strong; hence you should dilute it with a carrier before using. The antimicrobial and antiviral qualities of this oil fight against herpes, soothe the pain, inflammation; and burn caused by the sore. [13]

You can use the diluted oil to clean the sore and the adjacent area with it. But you should not use it if you have any allergic reaction to it.

Another thing to remember is, do not use it frequently. Excessive use of the oil can irritate your skin.

8. Oregano OilOregano Oil

Pop quiz for you. How often do you see any insects or pests on the oregano plant? The answer is, almost never. The reason behind it is, essential oregano oil has extreme anti-microbial quality. [19]

Applying diluted oregano oil with sterilized cotton on your sore will kill the virus inside the blister. Moreover, if used in a severe case, it will alleviate the severity of the situation in no time and soothe the pain and inflammation. [13]

While essential oregano oil is one of the most effective ways of managing cold sores, it is far more expensive than the other remedies. But, do not shy away from it, if you have a severe cold sore and are ready to spend accordingly to get rid of it as soon as possible. It will be worth it!

9. Geranium Oil

Geranium is another essential oil that you can use for cold sores. This oil possesses astringent, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties. [13]

This oil is mostly used to restore skin balance. In case of cold sores, it is used to dry up the blister and promotes quick healing. On the top of that, it can shrink the size of the blister in no time.

If you have sensitive skin, mix 3-4 drops of water with 2-3 drops of the essential oil, before applying it on the sore. Keep using, until the condition is gone.

10. Hyssop Oil

Hyssop essential oil comes from Hyssop tree, which is abundant in Mediterranean region.

It is one of the mildest natural oils there are. So, if you have sensitive skin, this is the perfect solution for you. You can apply this essential oil directly on the sore. [20,21]

You can also add 2-3 drops of hyssop oil with your herbal tea and soothe your cold sores.

11. Ginger Oil

We all know about the medicinal properties of ginger. I have news for you. Most of these features are due to the essential oil present in ginger. [13]

If extracted and applied, ginger oil will feel warm on your skin. Apart from serving a dozen of skin benefits, ginger oil shows the anti inflammatory property. Using ginger oil will ensure your quick remedy and less irritation. [20]

You should add some carrier oil with to dilute the ginger essential oil before you apply it anywhere near your face.

12. Myrrh Oil

We get myrrh essential oil by drying up the resin which the farmers gather from the Commiphora Myrrha tree. Along with having many medicinal properties, myrrh essential oil works magic against cold sore, and if you use it, you can avoid the risk of further scarring. [22]

You should use the diluted version of myrrh essential oil and wash your face properly before applying the essential oil.

You can use this 2-3 time a day until the scar fades away.

13. Bergamot Essential oil

You can use a diluted version of bergamot essential oil to fight against outbreaks of cold sores. Some people claim that bergamot is toxic and can be the reason for child death. The claims are baseless and irresponsible. [23] You can add the oil extracted from the peel for managing your cold sore problem.

Do not use more than 6 drops of bergamot in 5ml of carrier oil and apply the diluted mix around your cold sore.

14. Anise Oil

The anise essential oil can be one of your remedy options when it comes to the cold sore. This specific essential oil possesses antispasmodic and anti-viral property. [24]

You need to make sure, whether you are allergic to it or not. Initially, apply the diluted version of it.

If your skin does not show any sign of irritation, you can go ahead and apply 2-3 drop of the crude oil on the sore. If you use it correctly, you will not even feel the slightest tingle of these annoying and disgusting blisters.

15. Thyme Oil

As I have mentioned earlier, cold sores have some triggering factors, like stress, fever, flu or extreme sun exposure. Thyme oil is more of a potent agent and has antiviral property. If you take thyme oil, it will inhibit the growth of the virus, but the triggers will stay the same. [20,25]
Even after the trigger passes, you should be careful, because the virus might still be reactive.

So, you better watch out for that tingly sensation you feel on your lips, nose or another part of the body before getting a core sore.

If you see any sign of cold sore, just take 1-2 drops of thyme oil and apply gently on the spot.

16. Sandalwood Oil

Sandalwood essential oil contains strong anti-viral properties. [13] Feel free to apply this oil directly to your sore skin. But if your sore is anywhere near your nose, the strong smell of sandalwood can irritate you. If so, you can dilute it by mixing it with a carrier oil. You will get the same result. [20,26]

Mix 20 drops of sandalwood oil with 1 cup of water and apply around the affected area. The oil will help you with the itch and inflammation.

 17. Lemongrass Essential Oil

Due to having antiviral properties, lemongrass essential oil can fight against herpes simplex type 1 virus. If you use it in the early stage of the cold sore, it can inhibit the replication of viral growth. [27]

You can use lemongrass oil in the form of lip balm or use the diluted version of this essential oil directly on and around your sore.

To use the diluted version, take a cup of warm water and put 2-4 drops of lemongrass essential oil in it. You can also store this diluted essential oil for further use.

18. Thieves Oil

Thieves oil is not one of your directly extracted essential oil. Instead, it is a complex essential oil blend. Cinnamon, clove, rosemary, lemon, and eucalyptus are the main ingredients of this essential oil blend.

We are blending here 5 different essential oils, each of which separately contains medicinal characteristics like antiviral, anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.

It is easily understandable that how rich the blend is as per pharmaceutical properties. Some people find it to be the best remedy for cold sores, as it is all in one type of deal. You can opt for this if you have all these ingredients handy.

Apply the blend with Q-tip on and around the affected area.

Related: 15+ Fascinating Uses & Benefits of Thieves Oil + Directions

19. Synergistic Blend

This is another one of these essential oil blends.

You are going to need 8 drops of tea tree oil, 6 drops of chamomile oil, 3-4 drops of
lavender oil, 3 drops of lemon oil and 8 drops of geranium essential oil.

This blend also contains various pharmaceutical properties and ideal for cold sore
treatment.

Things to Keep in Mind Before Using Essential Oils for Cold Sores

• There are numerous essential oils out there with the same pharmaceutical property. Not each one of these will work for you. Again, if something works for someone else, does not necessarily mean, it would work for you as well. So, find out which suits your skin and use only these to avoid further skin problems.

• Always use a sterilizes and clean cotton swab or bud to apply the essential oil on your skin. Do not forget to dispose of the used cotton bud or swab and be very careful so that the used swab does not touch any of your body parts.

• In case of strong essential oils, use water or carrier oils like olive oil and coconut oil to dilute the oil before using.

• In case of having sensitive skin, you should dilute even the milder oils, just to be safe.

• If your cold sore is severe, painful, and does not go away even after using home remedies, you need to see a doctor.

Bottom Line

We all love to incorporate natural and chemical free remedies to solve our health issues as long as possible. But you need to remember that, these might not be enough in some cases. In case of that, you should contact your physician.

Some of these oils can work slowly than popular antibiotics, but you have to be patient. True, most of these do not have any side effects, but sometimes these remedies can take some time.

Also, do not use any of these on your babies without consulting with your pediatrician first. If you follow all that and do exactly as I said, then you can get rid of these blisters in no time.

Also Read: 10 Essential Oils for Cold Sores Relief

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