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Herbal Roll-on Remedies for Headache, Sleep, and Cold & Flu

Whenever I feel a little under the weather or sense that I’m coming down with something, these essential oil roll-on remedies are the first thing I turn to. These essential oil roll-on recipes are super simple to put together and really work. I’ll show you my favourite recipes to help relieve symptoms from headache, insomnia, and cold and flu viruses naturally! 

Roll On Remedies for Herbal Healing

What are Roll-On Essential Oils For?

Roll-on remedies are a quick and natural first line of defense against common (yet super annoying) ailments: headaches, disrupted sleep, and cold and flu viruses. They are made with high concentrations of herbs and essential oils in a gentle dilution of carrier oil that is convenient to use.

Today I’ll share the three essential oil roll-on recipes that I turn to so I can avoid popping pills.

Do They Work?

In a word…yes!

Somehow, I’m always surprised at the effectiveness of my homemade roll-on remedies. Even though I use a lot of essential oils and remedies on myself and with my family, still I have the tiniest jolt of awe every time they work.

And why shouldn’t they? Herbal healing has been around for longer than me, or you, or Western Medicine for that matter. The power of plants is something that you can easily harness into a pocket-sized roll-on bottle to help with little ailments before they get out of control.

iHerb Online Order of Essential Oils

Selecting Essential Oil for Your Roll-On Recipes

Before I give you the recipes for my roll-on remedies, I want to share a little about essential oil brands and my online shopping spree. I’m not affiliated with any essential oil network marketing companies and, to be honest, I’ve only tried a few of the products they offer.

Over the years, I have tried a large number of brands from traditional stores, though, and like to shop around for different brands to experiment with. I use my nose and other senses to evaluate how the oils work for me.

I have researched and even chatted with the makers of a number of brands and have learned two things:

  1. There is no certification or industry standard for essential oil brands, meaning the quality of the products is all over the map.
  2. More expensive oils are not necessarily better. Some brands that have high price points have far inferior products than those with lower price points. Yes, ingredients are one reason for the price of the bottle, but that number is also influenced by marketing, customer demand, and supply scale, among other things. I used to bypass the inexpensive essential oils brands, thinking that they were of poor quality, when in fact the price of brands like Aura Cacia is low because they produce so much that they are able to gain more economies of scale.

That brings me to my shopping spree. For most of my essential oils, I turn to iHerb. I really do love online shopping (so I can get it done and get back into the garden!) and they have a fantastic selection.

I usually drive around town looking for the supplies I need to make remedies and plant-based beauty recipes, but I found every single thing on my list there, plus a whole bunch more.

Are Roll-On Essential Oils Safe?

Essential oils are compounds extracted from plants, meaning they are supercharged with the plant’s aromas and herbal benefits. They’re potent and strong, one of my favourite herbal ingredients, and completely safe for use when used right.

When using essential oil roll-ons, it’s important to get the dose right. Typically, you never want to place pure essential oil directly on the skin. That is why I dilute it with a high-quality carrier oil to make it completely safe for skin application. Certain essential oils should also be avoided for skin use, such as cinnamon bark and oregano.

And as mentioned above, you want to make sure you’re using high-quality essential oils. So do your research into any brand before buying, regardless of price point. This will make certain that you’re actually getting results from your roll-on oil!

Grapeseed oil as a career oil for essential oils

How to Use an Essential Oil Roll-On

I made three of my favourite roll-on remedies from the essential oils and I used grapeseed oil as the carrier oil to dilute them. The essential oils all have slow-release dropper caps and the grapeseed oil has a small opening in the cap so no funnel or droppers were needed.

To apply your roll-on oil, make sure to perform a patch test beforehand to see how your skin will react. To do this, wash your forearm with soap and pat dry. Roll on your essential oil remedy and wait 24 hours to see if there is any kind of reaction.

I apply every one of my roll-on essential oils differently. Some I like on my face, behind my ears, on my chest, and even on the bottom of my feet. I noted for each roll-on oil how I like to use it but experiment for yourself. Just make sure to keep the oils far enough away from your eyes!

So let’s put these oils to good use, shall we?

Headache Roll On Remedy

Headache Relief Roll-on Remedy

Add the drops of essential oil into the roller bottle and fill with grapeseed oil, leaving a bit of headspace for the roller cap. Pop the roller into the bottle and add the cap.

How to Use

When I first feel a headache coming on, I use this roll-on for headaches by creating a halo around my head. Rolling it around my hairline from my forehead to temple, around the nape of my neck, and back up to the starting point. If I catch a headache before it gets momentum, this remedy will help take it away.

Sleep Well Roll-on Remedy

Add the drops of essential oil into the roller bottle and fill with grapeseed oil, leaving a bit of headspace for the roller cap. Pop the roller into the bottle and add the cap.

How to Use

I apply this remedy before bed to help promote restful sleep. To use, I roll it behind my ears, the back of my neck, and the soles of my feet. I also apply hand and foot lotion at night so I roll the ball in the palm of my hand, mix it in with the lotion, and then rub it into my hands and feet.

Cold and Flu Roll On Remedy

Cold and Flu Roll-on Remedy

Add the drops of essential oil into the roller bottle and fill with grapeseed oil, leaving a bit of headspace for the roller cap. Pop the roller into the bottle and add the cap.

This one has a lot more ingredients, but every drop is worth its weight in gold! Having gone through every single virus the last few years that my son was in daycare, I stopped getting 80% of them when I started using this combination.

How to Use

I apply this remedy in cold and flu season and when there is a virus going around. Usually, I roll it on my chest and the soles of my feet. I also use it as a hand sanitizer when I’m out in public and can’t wash my hands.

Herbal Roll on Remedy with Rosemary

For fun, I added some fresh herbs to my essential oil roll-ons to help me identify them. I added a tip of young rosemary to the cold and flu remedy, and a few small peppermint leaves to the roll-on for headaches.

I also added small lavender flowers on the stem plus some purple Centaurea Classic Artist Mix petals (because lavender doesn’t hold its colour in oil but Centaurea does) to the sleep remedy.

Herbal Roll on remedies with herbs

But…you can go a bit more traditional by using a label maker to identify the name of each of the essential oil roll-on recipes, too.

Roll on Remedies Head Aid Sleep Well and Immunity Boost

Either way, you’ll be sure to love these fantastic essential oil roll-ons. I recommend mixing them up so they are ready for you the next time you feel symptoms coming on. You’ll be thankful you did!

More Ways to Use Essential Oils:


  1. Great post!! Like you I use rosemary in my migraine mixes. Itsvthevonly one that works for me. I do want to mention that rosemary eos should not be used for children at all and Peppermint/Eucalyptus should never be used for young children as it can affect their respiratory systems. (Peppermint has a high amount of menthol, and some chemotypes of Eucalyptus and Rosemary have high amounts of 1,8-Cineole, which are not safe for use around children.) I use separate rollerbottle and/or a inhaler for myself. Personally I use another company (not mlm’s) that’s affordable and has a line of child safe oils designed by Robert Tisserand.

    I have used some of Now & Aur Cascia oils when I don’t have time to order as the health food store carry them locally.

    There are some great recipes here – can’t wait to try the cold/flu one this fall. I never thot to add herbs to them Great idea!! I’ll go check out iherb. I need some sweet almond oil!!

  2. We unfortunately lost our local Rocky Mountain Soap Company shop here in Victoria and they make a really effective headache roll-on. I probably can order online but prefer supporting businesses locally where I can.

    However making my own is something I’ve been thinking of. I’ll have to try your recipe. I kept the roll-on bottle so I can reuse that. I grow my own rosemary, lavender and mint so wondering if it is worth trying to make my own essential oils as well from the herbs?

  3. Thank you for the recipes, I will be trying them out, just need a couple more essential oils as I have most of them.


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