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A Holistic Approach for Stay-at-Home Dads


A Holistic Approach for Stay-at-Home Dads

More men than ever are stay-at-home dads, suggesting that this Father’s Day would be a great day for making everything all about him—something that most moms crave on their special day.

According to a Pew Research report from 2013, 2 million U.S. dads are currently serving as the primary caregivers for their kids while moms work outside of the home. 1

A few years earlier, in 2011, the U.S. Census estimated that 7 million fathers, or about 32 percent of married dads, were primary caregivers for their kids, although that figure included dads who were caregivers just one day out of the week.

Either way, there are plenty of men who take their role as dad pretty seriously.

Who Are Stay-At-Home Dads?

There's a wide range of reasons why so many men are becoming stay-at-home dads.

For one, parents need not stick to traditional roles. In fact, being open to switching roles is one of the most effective ways to promote female empowerment, according to one legendary feminist. “The deepest change begins with men raising children as much as women do and women being equal actors in the world outside the home,” said Gloria Steinem.

While many families are two-income households, it makes sense that if parents want someone at home to raise the kids and the mom of the house can earn more money, traditional roles would be reversed.

But parenting isn’t all about the Benjamins.

Some dads are more effective at parenting, period. While many moms were born to the role, some just aren’t as interested in parenting as their partners.

Stay-at-home dads are nothing new, however. The annual At-Home Dads Convention—an event specifically for dads who are the primary caregiver—has been held for 24 years.

For these guys—and any special dad, of course—a spa-inspired bit of relaxation is a great way to help him stretch out the celebration beyond Father’s Day.

And what parent doesn’t deserve to relax a bit?

Scents to Soothe

Essential oils are a wonderful way to not only calm down unruly kids (a study by Dr. Terry S. Friedmann found that vetiver, cedarwood, and lavender were the most effective oils at calming kids, including those with ADHD 2 ) but also bring a sense of calm to stressed-out men on dad duty.

Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender is always a good choice for relaxation, not only for kids but also for dads that need to calm down and reset for a moment. 

Clary Sage Essential Oil

The clean, uplifting aroma of clary sage helps ease stress and anxiety. Clary sage contains linalool, which helps lift away tension. 3

Wild Orange Essential Oil

While citrus scents are known for their ability to boost energy and mental clarity, wild orange offers myrcene, alpha-pinene, and linalool, a three-compound mix of terpenes that work as well as drugs in the benzodiazepine class at easing anxiety, without the sluggishness and other side effects that can prevent your stay-at-home dad from being his best self.

Scents to Energize

Peppermint Essential Oil

Peppermint is a great choice to boost energy, especially if the kids wake up early and you’ve been burning the candle at both ends. A 2008 study appearing in the International Journal of Neuroscience found that peppermint oil helped improve alertness, cognitive function and mood. 4 (Peppermint has also been shown to increase exercise endurance and act as an excellent after-workout muscle rub when mixed with a carrier oil such as coconut, which reduces inflammation.) 

Sweet Basil Essential Oil

Sweet basil not only eases mental fatigue, but it also helps fight off illness, which makes it a great addition to any busy dad’s essential oil collection.

Lime Essential Oil

Like all of the oils in the citrus family, lime helps provide an energy boost that can zap afternoon sluggishness. While lime has a masculine edge, other citrus oils that can help elevate energy levels include orange, lemon, bergamot, grapefruit, mandarin, and tangerine

Essentials for better skin

Stress can be just as damaging to men’s skin as women’s, but essential oils can help repair the damage.

Sandalwood Essential Oil

Sandalwood is especially great for dry skin, and its woody aroma has a masculine appeal.

Helichrysum Essential Oil

This classic essential oil has been used to help improve the appearance of skin for centuries. Not only does helichrysum offer powerful antioxidant benefits, which means it can help fight off free radicals that damage the skin proteins collagen and elastin, it also acts as an antimicrobial, so it can help ease acne in those with oil-prone skin. 5

Vetiver Essential Oil

Vetiver helps encourage normal sebum production, making it suitable for easing acne outbreaks for those with blemish-prone skin.

Photo credits: EvgenyAtamanenko/

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