Saline Nasal & Sinus Rinses: What You Need To Know Plus Beneficial Essential Oil Recipes

When your head feels like a beating drum and you can’t breathe, nothing feels better than using a nasal and sinus rinse to get the junk out.  This method of treatment is wonderful if you wish to avoid medications, which quite often, can make matters worse.

I use a combination of store bought, premixed saline packets and essential oils to ease what ails me.  Although it can take some getting used to, before long you will come to enjoy breathing easier after a rather gratifying sinus and nasal rinse!


Before trying your first nasal rinse there are a few key things you need to know about the process.  It is important you use the proper tools and ingredients.  These things can vary depending on how experienced you are.


All waters are NOT created equal.  Straight from your tap this life giving liquid can be full of things that may not harm you via regular consumption.  However, if a rogue microbe makes its way through your nasal passages into your brain, it could be life threatening.

When choosing a water to create your nasal rinse it is preferred that you use distilled water.  The distilling process ensures your water is sterile and does not contain chemicals such as chlorine.

If you still wish to stick with regular tap or bottled drinking water, just know you run the risk of not knowing what you are getting.  For safety sake, it would be best to boil the water in order to sterilize it.  Allowing it to cool prior to use.  This can be done simply enough in the microwave or on the stovetop.

**Note** In the case of untreated well water it is recommended you always boil it prior to use.


Two highly regarded methods of nasal rinses utilize either the Neti Pot or a Nasal Irrigation Bottle.  In either case, choose what you are comfortable with as the two methods are radically different.

In the case of the Neti Pot, this product uses the natural flow of water into and out of the nostrils.  Many physicians would say this is the preferred method because there is less risk of causing accidental damage with increased water pressure.

Rinsing with a Neti Pot takes practice and patience.  There is some skill required to coordinate the tilt of the head to facilitate flow out of the pot, into the nostril and back out the opposite nostril.

Find the NeilMed Porcelain Neti Pot HERE! It is safe to use with Essential Oils! As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

With a Nasal Irrigation Bottle the ease of use is much more simple for the novice.  Its design draws water up from the bottom of the bottle with applied pressure to the body of the bottle or via a battery operated pump.  The water is not left to flow by gravity, which if your nose is super plugged, would get you nowhere.

For most, this is the rinse of choice because of its user friendly operation.  I personally enjoy the ability to regulate the pressure to assist in removal of thicker blockages.  By using manual hand pressure I can adjust the water flow to what I like or what I need.

Find the NeilMed SinuFlo squeeze bottle starter kit HERE! Or, find the NeilMed Sinugator HERE!

**Note** By retaining the saline in the sinus it can help loosen thick mucus.  Simply allow saline to flow into the nose, pinch the nose closed with your hand and stand up.  Hold for 30 seconds prior to continuing the rinse.


For anyone wanting worry-free saline solutions, single-use, premeasured and premixed packets are the way to go.  There are a number of manufacturers out there and again, the choice is totally up to you. Click HERE for a great deal on NeilMed Packets!

When deciding what product you’d like to use, always pay attention to the final solution volume.  Some brands make varying volumes per premixed packet depending on the total volume of the Irrigation Bottle or Neti Pot they sell.  Too much water and not enough salt can be an nose burning experience you will not soon forget!

Another option I am not a fan of is creating your own dry saline mix.  A quick Google search to find recipes will reveal ingredients ranging from baking soda to Himalayan Pink Salt and so on.  I’m not saying that this is a terrible idea but unless you know your source it is hard to guarantee the safety of your end product.

I’ve heard many sellers passing off fake Himalayan salt lamps as natural products.  Who would want to purchase the same granular “Himalayan Pink Salt” only to be flushing salt, color dyes and Lord knows what else into their head?!  No thanks.


After reading my fears about Himalayan Pink Salt you’d think I’d be one of those who makes her saline by-the-book.  For the most part I do.  However, when it comes to the tooth-throbbing threat of an oncoming sinus infection, I do things a little differently.

Essential Oils are a great way to introduce healing ingredients without having to succumb to pharmaceuticals.  I try to avoid using antibiotics whenever possible.  Over the past few years I’ve fought off colds and sinus infections using the nasal rinse method.  Getting the junk out is only the first step.  Repairing and preventing further infection is the key to feeling better.

When choosing an Essential Oil it is VERY IMPORTANT you use quality oils.  You DO NOT want fragrance oils which are typically man made scents and are not an Essential Oil.  When I make my rinse recipes I use Young Living Essential Oils.  They can be expensive, but I know the oils are tested and they are pure.

Recipes using Essential Oils, would be best used with a porcelain, ceramic or glass Neti Pot.  Essential Oils, over time, can degrade plastic.  Because the oils I use are not citrus based, a NeilMed plastic Nasal Irrigation Bottle can be used without damage.  Just be sure to mix your rinse, use it immediately and wash the bottle well afterwards.  Replacement of your Irrigation Bottle is recommended every year. The following recipes are for an 8oz application.

**Note** Start with a clean, sanitized bottle or netipot.  This can be done by washing well and sanitizing in boiling water.

Basic Feel Good Rinse

  • 8 oz Distilled Water
  • 1 Premixed NeilMed Saline Packet
  • 1 drop Eucalyptus Globulus

Healing Sinus Rinse

  • 8 oz Distilled Water
  • 1 Premixed NeilMed Saline Packet
  • 1 drop Eucalyptus Globulus
  • 1 drop Frankincense
  • 1 drop Rosemary

Now that you have my top two sinus support recipes you can come up with more on your own.  Again, Google is a great resource but don’t let them lead you astray.  Here are a few oils I have used in nasal rinses and a few…well.  Lets just say, from experience, oils you are better off NOT trying in an internal saline rinse – they are great for sinus support in a diffuser.


  • Eucalyptus Globulus
  • Frankincense
  • Rosemary
  • Tea Tree
  • Lavender


  • Peppermint
  • Oregano
  • Citrus


*Disclaimer – I am not a doctor and my recipes have not been physician approved.  I personally use these recipes and methods of nasal irrigation.  Any treatment, direction or usage of this informational content is at your own risk.


    1. Yes, quality essential oils only (I use Young Living oils). There are different versions of Neti Pots and I’d recommend using a ceramic or glass version when using my recipe. I have used the plastic squeeze bottle with oils but over time the oils will degrade the plastic. Combine your water, salts AND add a drop each of essential oils such as Eucalyptus Globulus or Rosemary into the mix. Shake to combine and use as you normally would.


  1. So when use eo with sinus rinse neil med , u use neti pot porcelain/ceramic?

    Can i use bottle plastic from Neil Med, coz i already use with the plastic bottle of neilmed same with ur picture behind eo and mixed premixed sachet ?

    Its hard to fine neti pot ceramic in indonesia/singapore


    1. In a pinch you can use the plastic bottle – I have before. Typically with added essential oils you want to avoid using any type of plastic as the oils will start to degrade the container. Glass or ceramic is best.


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