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20 Of The Most Practical Ways You Can Use Lemon Oil

collage of images showing Practical Ways To Use Lemon Oil

The Many Uses For Lemon Essential Oil

Although I love pretty much every citrus fruit, I do have a special place in my heart for lemon, and not only because it’s of my all-time favorite scents and flavors. It certainly doesn’t hurt that lemon essential oil (one of my favorite oils, along with lavender, peppermint, and tea tree) is so useful around the house!

To give you an idea of all the great ways you can put it to good use, I picked some of the best ones to share with you today. Below, you’ll learn about 20 ways to use lemon essential oil around the house, including to treat laundry stains, clean greasy messes, and much more!

20 Practical Ways To Use Lemon Oil

putting lemon oil onto a toothbrush

1. Sanitize Your Toothbrush

Add a drop of lemon oil to your toothbrush about once a week. It will help sanitize and deodorize your toothbrush (an important aspect of oral health), plus help keep your mouth fresh and clean!

Related: 22 Health Benefits Of Lemons

2. Treat Nail Fungus

Lemon oil makes a great treatment for fingernail and toenail fungus. Just add a drop or two to the affected nail several times a day as needed.

Related:  20 Of The Best Practical Uses For Tea Tree Oil

putting lemon oil into a pot of boiling water

3. Eliminate Food Odors

Are food odors lingering in your kitchen? Just bring a small pot of water to a boil on your stovetop, then add a few drops of lemon essential oil to the simmering water. The steam will carry the citrus aroma into the air and freshen it in no time!

4. Remove Gum From Hair

When someone has gum in their hair, lemon essential oil can be a real lifesaver! Work a few drops of lemon oil into the gum to loosen it from the hair, adding more oil as needed until you’ll able to pull the gum free.

putting lemon oil into a bowl of water with raspberries

5. Wash Your Produce

Fill a large bowl with cold water and add 2–3 drops of lemon oil to make a simple and effective produce wash. Swish your fresh produce around in the water to remove dirt and grime and enjoy clean, healthy fruits and vegetables.

6. Kill Aphids

Kill aphids and other pesky little bugs on contact with a simple oil spray. Fill a big glass spray bottle with water, add 3-5 drops of lemon essential oil, then shake to combine. (The oil and water will separate over time, so just be sure to shake it up again before each use.)

Related:  20 Powerful Uses For Peppermint Oil You Need To Know

dabbing lemon oil onto an envelope and a woman smelling an envelope

7. Personalize A Letter

Add a dab of lemon oil to the envelope the next time you send a letter or card in the mail. The recipient will love the little personal touch!

8. Make Your Dishes Sparkle

Add a drop of lemon oil to your natural dish soap or your dishwasher detergent when you run a load of dishes. There are a couple of benefits to this: they’ll come out sparkling clean, and they’ll smell nice and fresh too!

Related:  13 Highly Practical Essential Oil Cleaning Hacks You Need To Know

woman putting lemon oil onto her hands

9. Clean Your Hands

Out and about and forgot to bring your hand sanitizer along? A drop of lemon oil can help sanitize your hands in a pinch!

Related: Make These To Keep Your Hands Germ Free On The Go

10. Highlight Your Hair

You can use the photosensitivity of lemon essential oil to your benefit by using it to highlight your hair. Just work a drop or two of lemon oil through you hair with a brush or comb before spending time in the sun. (Just be careful to keep the oil well away from your scalp—having lemon oil on your skin out in the sun can lead to serious burns.)

putting lemon oil into a bucket of water

11. Clean Hard Floors

Add 5-10 drops of lemon essential oil and 1/4 cup of white vinegar to a bucket of water, then dip your mop into the solution and use it to clean hard floors. If your floors are especially dirty, add a few drops of dish soap to help cut through the grease and grime.

Note: When cleaning with vinegar, especially on porous surfaces like hardwood floors, it’s important to dilute it properly to avoid accidental damage.

Related: 10 Homemade Cleaners Made From Citrus Peels

12. Treat Calluses & Corns

Lemon essential oil is great for softening and exfoliating areas of tough, dry skin like corns and calluses. Rub a drop of lemon oil onto a corn or callus daily until it disappears.

spraying a chair with a glass spray bottle with lemon oil

13. Freshen The Air

Fill a small spray bottle with distilled water, add 6 drops of lemon essential oil, then shake well. Use the spray to freshen the air in your bathroom, laundry room, kitchen, or any room around the house.

Related: This Is The Easiest Way To Freshen Up Any Room

14. Soften Dry Heels

Add a drop of lemon oil to a teaspoon of your favorite carrier oil and massage it onto the soles of your feet before bed. Repeat nightly as needed for softer, more moisturized feet!

putting lemon oil onto a sharpie line on a table

15. Erase Greasy Marks

Use 1-2 drops of lemon essential oil to erase oily marks left behind by gum, oil, grease, or crayons. This works well on most hard surfaces! (It actually works on fabrics too—check out the link below to learn my favorite lemon oil laundry hack!)

Related: This Is The Best Way To Remove Stains You Forgot To Pretreat

16. Boost Your Mood

Feeling a little blue? Add lemon essential oil to your diffuser and your disposition will be sunnier before you know it!

putting lemon oil onto a container of baking soda

17. Deodorize Your Fridge

Add a few drops of lemon oil to a fresh box of baking soda and place it in your fridge or freezer. The baking soda will absorb unpleasant odors and replace it with the fresh scent of citrus.

18. Breathe Easier

Add a few drops of lemon oil to your humidifier to help ease a cough or other respiratory symptoms.

rubbing a leather jacket with a cloth with lemon oil

19. Shine & Protect Leather

Add a drop of lemon oil to your cloth whenever you polish or condition leather items, including shoes, bags, jackets, or even sofas. The lemon oil will add shine and help prevent the leather from splitting.

20. Conquer Cold Sores

Apply a drop of lemon oil to a cold sore to help promote healing. The antiviral properties of lemon oil may help fight the virus that can cause cold sores.

Don’t take just my word for it! Here’s how OGT Readers feel about the lemon essential oil from my shop:

“I’m a big fan of lemon and this scent is close to fresh squeezed! Some essential lemon oils smell like lemon furniture polish, but this one is crisp and fresh.”


“I love this oil. It makes a great DIY cleaner for floors, counters, and it smells so good in my diffuser. It’s so much better than the lemon oil I buy at some home stores.”


“Since I started making my own household cleaners (thanks to Jillee’s great how-to’s), I rely on the fresh, clean scent and antibacterial properties of this lemon EO as an essential ingredient.”


“I bought this as part of the recipe for a stain remover, and it worked on hair dye that had splashed on my BRAND NEW WHITE bathroom carpets. Amazing!!”

Susan G.

“I tried the mix of a little olive oil and several drops of lemon oil mix for my table that had awful water spots and WOW worked wonders!”

Bonnie S.

More Fresh Ideas For Using Lemons

What are your favorite ways to use lemon oil?

Jill Nystul Photo

Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.
I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee

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Bright Ideas

  • Does lemon oil have real lemon essence in it? If so, please don’t use it on your toothbrush. The acid eats away enamel. I’m a dental hygienist.

    • Lemon Essential Oil is produced by steam distillation or cold pressing only the rind, it is not made from lemon juice.
      It is essential oil is pH neutral, meaning it is not acidic. It needs over 2000 lemon rinds to make 1kg of essential oil.
      Hope this helps

  • An added tip, if you reuse jars for decorations, storage, or bulk shopping lemon essential oil takes the sticky label residue right off! Remove the label from the jar, spread a few drops of lemon essential oil around the jar so all the residue is covered, and leave for 15-30 minutes. The residue will come right off with a cloth, paper towel, or even your nails.

    If you are having trouble removing the label fill the jar with boiling water past the label line and leave for 5 mins :)

  • I’m not fond of the idea of using an essential oil in my garden. You can plat a small clump of chives near the plant you wish to protect. Not only is this an organic way of repelling aphids, you can also use the chives in cooking. Besides, what about the other ESSENTIAL pest controls – beneficial insects like ladybugs? Can you promise me that this (non)essential oil won’t kill any beneficial insects? What about honeybees?

  • My favorite use for lemon oil is for runny noses and nose drip. I just use a little carrier oil on a swab and rub it on the sides of my nose. This usually helps me most if the time. It’s also great to use with lavender and peppermint oil when my seasonal allergies are bad. I usually use this in my diffuser. I think lemon oil is one of my favorite oils.

  • Love love love oil posts. I’ve become quite obsessed. How about cinnamon leaf? I’m waiting for my order of it to be delivered. And I never properly thanked you.. One day I clicked on one of your oil links and it brought me to Eden Gardens, which I have now become obsessed with. I was having trouble finding a brand that was affordable and actually genuine. Now every payday I order one for my collection. So thank you, without you I probably would have given up on oils.

      • She does, but her selection is quite limited. I don’t mean this mean, but that is why I buy my oils elsewhere.

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