The best essential oils for lymphatic drainage have the power to transform your health.

In my experience as a lymphatic massage therapist, at least five essential oils have an excellent effect on the lymph system.

Our lymphatic systems are responsible for detoxifying the body of waste products.

Want to know which ones you should be using?

Keep reading to discover the best essential oils for lymphatic drainage.

My Pick for Best Essential Oils for Lymphatic Drainage


There are hundreds of different essential oils out there, but only a handful offer quality support for lymphatic drainage.

I see significant improvements in clients when I use these essential oils:

  • Cypress
  • Lemon
  • Grapefruit
  • Orange or Tangerine
  • Bay Laurel (Laurus nobilis)



Cypress essential oil stimulates healthy circulation, aids detoxification, and benefits varicose veins. For some, it may even reduce fluid retention.

Our lymphatic system is responsible for eliminating toxins in our body. Cypress aids in this process.

I like using cypress essential oil in a diffuser or adding a few drops to my bath water with Epsom salts.



In general, lemon and citrus essential oils stimulate lymphatic drainage and promote detoxification. An added benefit is the delightful uplifting aroma!

This delicious citrus essential oil also benefits cellulite and the removal of toxins from fatty tissues.



Grapefruit essential oil stimulates the lymphatic system, supports detoxification, and may enhance immune function. It has a unique aroma profile, as well. I call grapefruit my “happy” oil. It smells so yummy when diffused.

The benefits of using grapefruit essential oil include reducing cellulite and seasonal discomforts. It may even help with acne breakouts and congestion.



Orange or tangerine essential oils can stimulate the lymphatic system, reduce toxins, and support your immune system. Are you starting to see a theme here with citrus?

Keep in mind that all citrus oils are photosensitive and should be used cautiously if the area is exposed to direct sunlight within 48 hours of application.

Where do I apply the best essential oils for lymphatic drainage?


Get the most out of your essential oils by applying them to your neck, armpits, abdomen, behind your knees, and around your feet and ankles.

Use a gentle massage technique to apply the oil towards the collarbone. I do this with my clients to encourage healthy lymphatic flow.

If you’re applying the oil to your armpit region, dilute the oil with a fatty carrier oils, such as almond oil, before application.

For abdomen application, use a gentle clockwise massage technique after diluting it.

The citrusy essential oils are great for applying behind the knees to simulate lymphatic flow in the legs.

Use gentle massage pressure to enhance circulation by applying essential oils to your feet and ankles.

Anyone at home can use these techniques.

How can I tell if my lymphatic system is blocked?


Not sure if your lymphatic system needs to be drained? Here are some common symptoms I see in clients with clogged lymph systems:

  1. Swelling
  2. Feeling Fatigued
  3. Recurring Infections
  4. Skin Issues
  5. Digestive Issues
  6. Persistent Pain and Soreness
  7. Brain fog
  8. Sinus congestion
  9. Abdominal bloat
  10. Chronic headaches

If you notice these symptoms, your body may struggle to eliminate toxins. Anything from itching and dryness of the skin to bloating or constipation could indicate a struggling lymphatic system.

Still not sure if you’re facing lymphatic issues?

Try tracking your energy levels and any changes to the health of your skin. If you notice chronic issues, it could indicate you need lymphatic drainage.

What causes my lymphatic system to clog up?


I have seen a wide range of causes for lymphatic system blockages, but the most common are:


Our bodies demand proper hydration to function. Dehydration can hinder the movement of lymph flow, leading to congestion of the lymph vessels.

Poor Diet

Consuming a highly-processed diet, high in sodium, and inadequate fiber all contribute to lymphatic congestion.


Ongoing stress compromises the lymphatic system’s function, leading to congestion.

Sedentary Lifestyle

The lymphatic system requires muscular contraction and movement to propel the lymph efficiently. If you are sitting all day or lead a sedentary lifestyle, it places additional stress on the lymphatic system.

Medical Conditions

Hormonal imbalances and surgeries can cause the lymphatic system to malfunction. A lymphatic drainage massage can help restore proper function to get you living your best life again.


As we age, all aspects of our body tend to slow down, including our lymphatic system. If you’re experiencing poor circulation, there’s a chance your lymphatic system needs more support.

Try Them Out for Yourself


Essential oils can greatly improve your lymphatic system with regular use. I highly recommend non-citrus blends if you struggle with skin/sun sensitivity, but any of the options in the list above would make a great choice. I love the aroma of cypress and bay laurel.

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If you wish to learn more before scheduling an in-person appointment, I offer complimentary 15 minute phone consultations.

You may also take advantage of video consultation appointments if you live out of state. I look forward to hearing from you!