Essential Oil Spotlight: Cardamom

Cardamom essential oil (Elettaria cardamomum) is steam-distilled from the seeds of the plant. It has a sweet, spicy, balsamic scent with floral undertones.

It has antibacterial, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, decongestant, diuretic, expectorant, stomachic, and tonic properties.

Anciently, cardamom was used for epilepsy, spasms, paralysis, rheumatism, cardiac disorders, all intestinal illnesses, pulmonary disease, fever, and digestive and urinary complaints. It is said to be able to neutralize the lingering odor of garlic.

If you are acquainted with Indian food, you may associate the flavor and smell of this oil with sweet Indian dishes such as rice pudding, as the cardamom spice is a common ingredient in this dish and gives it a cool, minty aroma and taste. It may be that rice pudding is often served at the end of the meal because of cardamom’s ability to neutralize lingering odors that cause halitosis.

Today cardamom is commonly used for coughs, digestive support, headaches, inflammation, muscle aches, nausea, and respiratory ailments. Cardamom may also help with appetite loss, bronchitis, colic, debility, dyspepsia, flatulence, halitosis, mental fatigue, heartburn, sciatica, ulcers, and vomiting. It may also be beneficial for menstrual periods, menopause, and nervous indigestion.

Cardamom is most known for supporting the digestive and respiratory systems of the body.

Applications of Cardamom Essential Oil and Safety Data

Topical Application: Cardamom essential oil is safe to use without dilution, but it can also be diluted as needed. Apply to reflex points and/or directly on area of concern.
Aromatic Application: Diffuse, or inhale cardamom essential oil directly. The aroma of cardamom is uplifting, refreshing, and invigorating. It may be beneficial for clearing confusion.
Internal Application: Cardamom essential oil can be taken internally and is often used as a flavoring in cooking. Put 1–2 drops of cardamom oil under the tongue or in a beverage. It can also be taken in capsules.

5 Ways to Use Cardamom Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
Try these blends in your diffuser to increase your mental alertness, open your airways, and enjoy the scent of autumn leaves:

2. Use in Roll-on Blends

Cardamom essential oil is helpful to the respiratory and digestive systems. It can also help relieve a headache. Rub the respiratory blends (below) on the chest, throat, back, and/or sinuses to help open airways and clear coughs. Rub the digestive blends on the abdomen to help reduce flatulence, bloating, belching, hiccups, and heartburn. Cardamom is a safe essential oil to use with children, so it is a great choice over peppermint to open their little airways and support their digestive systems.

Respiratory Support (6+ years):
5 drops eucalyptus
5 drops peppermint
5 drops lemon
3 drops cardamom
2 drops rosemary
2 drops melaleuca
(20% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
10% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
Little Lungs Respiratory Support (Children):
1 drop cardamom
1 drop frankincense
(2% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
1% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
Digestive Support (6+ years):
5 drops cardamom
3 drops ginger
3 drops peppermint
(10% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
5% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
Tiny Tummies Digestive Support (Children):
1 drop cardamom
1 drop orange
1 drop fennel
(3% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
1.5% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
Headaches:
4 drops peppermint
3 drops cardamom
3 drops rosemary
(10% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
5% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)

Add oils to a 5 ml roll-on bottle or 10 ml roll-on bottle depending on desired dilution percentage. Fill the bottle the rest of the way with a carrier oil. Common carrier oils for use in a roll-on bottle include Fractionated Coconut OilSweet Almond Oil, and Jojoba Oil.

3. Use in a Bath or Shower:

Cardamom essential oil is excellent as a bath oil. Combine one of the following oil blends with 1/4–1/2 cup (60–120 g) epsom salt, and evenly disperse throughout the tub. Alternatively, you can add these essential oil combinations to these bath bombs.

Muscle Aches:
2 drops cardamom
1 drop peppermint
1 drop clove
1 drop copaiba
Congestion Bomb:
2 drops eucalyptus
2 drops peppermint
2 drops cardamom
2 drops Douglas fir (or another fir oil)

If you prefer taking showers, try adding the Congestion Bomb blend or cardamom essential oil to these shower disks. The steam from the shower and the cardamom essential oil can be beneficial to clearing congestion.

4. Use in Breath Mints

Cardamom is beneficial in helping halitosis (bad breath) and is said to be able to neutralize the odor of garlic. Try adding cardamom essential oil to homemade breath mints, or use in a breath spray.

5. Add to Cooking Recipes

Cardamom essential oil is often used in Indian cooking, but it is great to add to any of your favorite recipes. It pairs well with chocolate, rice, honey, coconut oil, spices like cinnamon and clove, and works in both savory and sweet dishes. This oil can taste strong, so start with a toothpick and add more to taste. Here are some of our recipes that use cardamom essential oil:

Sources: Modern Essentials™: The Complete Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 9th Edition, p. 45.

Essential Oil Spotlight: Neroli

Neroli (Citrus aurantium) essential oil is extracted from flowers of the bitter orange tree. Its scent is somewhat floral with citrus undertones. It smells sweet, delicate, and slightly bitter at the same time.

The orange flower was named after the princess Anne-Marie, countess of Neroli, who used it to perfume her bath water. It is now considered one of the finest perfumery ingredients and is particularly important in eau-de-cologne toilet water. The flowers were once popularly used in bridal bouquets to symbolize innocence and fertility.

Some properties of this oil include antibacterial, antidepressant, anti-infectious, antiparasitic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antiviral, aphrodisiac, deodorant, sedative, and tonic.

Historically, neroli has been regarded by the Egyptian people for its great attributes of healing the mind, body, and spirit. It brings everything into the focus of one and at the moment.

Today, neroli essential oil is commonly used for anxiety, emotional balance, relaxing, sensitive skin, and stress. It may also support the digestive system and may help inhibit bacterial infections, parasites, and viruses. Other possible uses include insomnia, menopause, PMS, stress-related conditions, and skin conditions.

The body systems affected by neroli essential oil include the digestive system and skin.

Applications of Neroli Essential Oil and Safety Data

Topical Application: Neroli essential oil can be used neat (with no dilution). Apply to reflex points and/or directly on area of concern.
Aromatic Application: Diffuse, or inhale the aroma directly. The aroma of neroli has some powerfully soothing psychological effects. It is calming and relaxing to the body and spirit. It may also help to strengthen and stabilize the emotions and bring relief to seemingly hopeless situations. It encourages confidence, courage, joy, peace, and sensuality.
Internal Application: Neroli essential oil can be taken internally. Try diluting 1 drop of neroli essential oil in 1 tsp. (5 ml) honey or 4 oz. (125 ml) of beverage (such as non-dairy milk). It is not to be used for children under 6 years of age and should be used with caution and in greater dilution for children over 6 years of age.
Safety Note: Consult with a physician before using if pregnant or being treated for a medical condition.

5 Ways to Use Neroli Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
Here are a few great diffuser blends to help you calm down when stressed, anxious, or needing to sleep:

2. Use in a Massage Oil
Neroli essential oil is very calming to the body and mind. When you get feeling too stressed or anxious, try massaging one of these blends into your tense muscles.

Relaxing Massage Blend:
3 drops neroli
3 drops petitgrain
3 drops marjoram
1 drop spikenard
2 Tbsp. (30 ml) carrier oil
Calming
Massage Blend:

6 drops petitgrain
5 drops orange
4 drops neroli
2 Tbsp. (30 ml) carrier oil

Common carrier oils to use for massage include Fractionated Coconut Oil, Coconut Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, or Jojoba Oil.

3. Roll on for quick help in calming down or soothing digestive pains.
Stress and anxiety follow us wherever we go, so making this Stress Relief Roll-on for on-the-go use can help during those difficult times. Neroli is also beneficial for those who suffer from insomnia or sleep issues, as it helps to relax the mind and calm any emotions that prohibit sleep. Try the Sleep Restfully Roll-on when you have restless nights. Aside from its calming and relaxing properties, neroli is also helpful for the digestive system and may help inhibit bacteria, infections, parasites, and viruses. If you are experiencing digestive pains, chronic diarrhea, colic, or intestinal spasms, try rolling the Digestive Support blend on your abdomen.

Stress Relief Roll-on:
3 drops bergamot
2 drops orange
2 drops lavender
2 drops neroli
1 drops lemongrass
2 tsp. (10 ml) carrier oil*
Sleep Restfully Roll-on:
4 drops orange
3 drops cedarwood
3 drops neroli
2 drops Roman chamomile
2 tsp. (10 ml) carrier oil*
Digestive Support Roll-on:
5 drops neroli
4 drops orange
2 drops peppermint
2 tsp. (10 ml) carrier oil*
Add oils to a 10 ml roll-on bottle. Fill the bottle the rest of the way with a carrier oil.

Note: These recipes are formulated for 5–6% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on bottle (perfect for daily use if needed). For a stronger dilution, simply cut the amount of carrier oil in half, or use a 5 ml roll-on bottle.

*Common carrier oils for use in a roll-on bottle include Fractionated Coconut Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, and Jojoba Oil.

4. Add to a Relaxing Bath
Neroli calms and slows the mind and is useful for insomnia, hysteria, and all states of anxiety and depression. Combine one of the following oil blends with 1/4–1/2 cup (60–120 g) epsom salt, and evenly disperse throughout the tub. Alternatively, you can add these essential oil combinations to these bath bombs. These blends can also be used in a diffuser, roll-on, or linen spray.

Calming Peace:
5 drops neroli
3 drops Roman chamomile
2 drops petitgrain
Insomnia & Sleep:
4 drops neroli
2 drops juniper berry
2 drops chamomile
Nervous Tension:
2 drops bergamot
2 drops marjoram
1 drop neroli
2 drops sandalwood

5. Create a Peaceful Atmosphere for Romance or Meditation
The reputed aphrodisiac quality of neroli stems from its ability to calm any nervous apprehension that may be felt before a sexual encounter. Neroli can be a means of overcoming sexual difficulties that rise from anxiety or tension. The traditional use of orange blossom in bridal wreaths arose from this property of neroli, though it has long been forgotten.
Try diffusing this blend or use it in a linen spray:

Peaceful Romance:
5 drops neroli
1 drop sandalwood

Neroli also helps in creating a peaceful atmosphere when it is used in meditation. Diffuse neroli essential oil (or the Peaceful Romance blend above), and rub a drop of the oil over the heart to achieve a calm heart and relaxed mind.

5. Nourish Your Skin
Neroli is beneficial for all skin types, especially if there is dryness, redness, or irritation. Neroli stimulates the regeneration of new cells and the elimination of old ones, improving skin’s elasticity. It is generally helpful for all kinds of skin problems such as thread veins, scarring, and stretch marks. Try using the blend below as a facial cream or skin cream to help nourish your skin.

Improved Skin:
3 drops neroli
2 drops frankincense
2 drops Roman chamomile
1–2 tsp. (4–8 g) Coconut Oil

Sources:
Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 9th Edition, p. 96.
Healing Oils: 500 Formulas for Aromatherapy by Carol & David Schiller
Aromatherapy: An A–Z by Patricia Davis
Aromatherapy Blends & Remedies by Franzesca Watson

Essential Oil Spotlight: Lavender

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) essential oil has a wonderful, sweet, floral aroma with herbaceous, balsamic, and woody undertones. The aroma of lavender has been used for many years in sachets, pillows, and potpourri to help promote feelings of serenity and peace.

Lavender essential oil is a universal oil that has traditionally been known to balance the body and to work wherever there is a need. The list of common primary uses, historical uses, French medicinal uses, and other possible uses contains over 120 conditions. So, if in doubt, use lavender!

Lavender essential oil possesses analgesic, anticoagulant, anticonvulsant, antidepressant, antifungal, antihistaminic, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antimutagenic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antitoxic, antitumor, cardiotonic, regenerative, and sedative properties.

Body systems often affected by lavender essential oil include the cardiovascular and nervous systems, emotions, and the skin.

Research being conducted on lavender continues to show new possible uses and therapeutic benefits that lavender may possess. To learn more about a number of these research studies, including summaries and sources, please see the book Modern Essentials.

Applications of Lavender Essential Oil and Safety Data

Topical Application: Lavender essential oil is one of the gentlest essential oils and can be used safely on children, pregnant women, elderly people, animals, and those with sensitive skin. It can be applied neat (with no dilution) when used topically. Apply directly on area of concern or to reflex points.
Aromatic Application: Lavender essential oil can be diffused or inhaled directly. Lavender oil promotes consciousness, health, love, peace, and a general sense of well-being when inhaled. It also nurtures creativity.
Internal Application: Lavender essential oil can be taken internally. Try placing a drop or two under the tongue, taking it in a capsule, adding a little to a beverage, or using it as a flavoring in cooking. If adding lavender to a food or beverage, try using just a toothpick at first, and add more to taste.

5 Ways to Use Lavender Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
The scent of lavender blends well with most oils, especially with citrus oils and other floral oils. As an antihistamine, lavender essential oil is beneficial for relieving allergy symptoms. Its sedative properties make it a great option for promoting a good night’s rest. Try diffusing one of the following blends in your diffuser. You could also add a drop of lavender essential oil to a cloth, tissue, nasal inhaler, or the palms of your hands and breathe in the aroma.

Continue reading

Essential Oil Spotlight: Lemon

Lemon essential oil (Citrus limon) is cold expressed from the rinds of the fruit. In order to get a kilo (2.2 lbs) of oil, 3,000 lemons are required.

Lemon essential oil has many uses since it has the following properties: anticancer, antidepressant, antiseptic, antifungal, antioxidant, antiviral, astringent, invigorating, refreshing, and tonic.

It is used primarily for air pollution, anxiety, atherosclerosis, bites/stings, blood pressure (regulation), brain injury, cold sores, colds (common), concentration, constipation, depression, digestion (sluggish), disinfectant, dry throat, dysentery, energizing, exhaustion, fever, flu, furniture polish, gout, greasy/oily hair, grief/sorrow, gum/grease removal, hangovers, heartburn, intestinal parasites, kidney stones, lymphatic cleansing, MRSA, overeating, pancreatitis, physical energy, postpartum depression, purification, relaxation, skin (tones), stress, throat infection, tonsillitis, uplifting, varicose veins, and water purification. See Modern Essentials for many other uses for lemon essential oil.

Historically, lemon has been used to fight food poisoning, malaria and typhoid epidemics, and scurvy. (In fact, sources say that Christopher Columbus carried lemon seeds to America—probably just the leftovers from the fruit that was eaten during the trip.)

Application Methods for Lemon Essential Oil and Safety Data

Aromatic: Use a diffuser or put a few drops of lemon essential oil on a cloth, tissue, nasal inhaler, or the palms of your hands to breathe it in. Lemon oil promotes health, healing, physical energy, and purification when used aromatically. Its fragrance is invigorating, enhancing, and warming.

Topical: Lemon essential oil can be applied neat (with no dilution) when used topically. Apply directly on area of concern or to reflex points. Lemon oil can sensitize the skin to ultraviolet light within 12 hours of use. So exercise caution here, and avoid direct sunlight for up to 12 hours after using on skin.

Internal: Lemon essential oil can be taken internally, and it is often used as a flavoring in cooking. Put 1–2 drops of lemon oil under the tongue or in a beverage. It can also be taken in capsules.

5 Ways to Use Lemon Essential Oil

1. Aromatic
The aroma of lemon essential oil can help you get energized in the morning—try a few drops in the corner of your shower stall to circulate with the water vapor. Lemon aroma can also help relieve anxiety or lift a depressive mood. Diffused lemon helps disinfect the air to prevent the spread of sickness, and it facilitates recovery from colds. Try diffusing lemon essential oil alone or in one of the following recipes:
Continue reading

Essential Oil Spotlight: Black Pepper

black-pepperBlack pepper essential oil is steam-distilled from the berries of a tree in the Piperaceae family. Its odor is spicy and musky with herbaceous undertones.

Some properties of this oil include analgesic, anticatarrhal, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antitoxic, aphrodisiac, expectorant, laxative, rubefacient, and stimulant (nervous, circulatory, and digestive).

Pepper has been used for thousands of years to treat malaria, cholera, and other digestive problems. It is currently also used to increase cellular oxygenation, support digestive glands, stimulate the endocrine system, increase energy, and help rheumatoid arthritis. Black pepper essential oil may also help with loss of appetite, catarrh, chills, colds, colic, constipation, coughs, diarrhea, dysentery, flatulence (combine with fennel), flu, heartburn, nausea, neuralgia, poor circulation, poor muscle tone, sprains, and vertigo.

Research has found that inhaling black pepper essential oil can reduce cravings for cigarettes and symptoms of anxiety in smokers.

Applications of Black Pepper Essential Oil and Safety Data

Topical Application: Dilute black pepper essential oil with a carrier oil for children and those with sensitive skin. Apply to reflex points and/or directly on area of concern.
Aromatic Application: Diffuse, or inhale the aroma of black pepper essential oil directly. The aroma of black pepper is comforting and stimulating.
Internal Application: Black pepper essential oil can be used as a flavoring in cooking.

5 Ways to Use Black Pepper Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
Here are a couple great diffuser blends to help you get energized and motivated:

2. Use in a Massage Oil

Black pepper essential oil is beneficial for warming cold or stiff hands. Try this Hand Rejuvenator recipe—massage into the hands starting at the fingertips, then work your way up the arm to the shoulder.

Hand Rejuvenator:
5 drops grapefruit
5 drops black pepper
5 drops spearmint
5 drops ginger
1 1/2 Tbsp. (23 ml) fractionated coconut oil
(or other carrier oil)

Black pepper is also really great at helping to relax muscles and relieve aches and pains. Here is a recipe for a Sore Muscles Salve. You can also try one of the following massage recipes:

Muscle Relaxer
Massage Blend:

10 drops ginger
10 drops cypress
5 drops juniper berry
5 drops black pepper
2 Tbsp. (30 ml) Sesame Seed Oil
(or other carrier oil)
Aches & Pains
Massage Blend:

4 drops black pepper
4 drops Roman chamomile
4 drops marjoram
2 drops lavender
2 Tbsp. (24 g) Coconut Oil
(or other carrier oil)
Sore Muscles
Massage Blend:

15 drops ginger
9 drops ylang ylang
6 drops black pepper
2 Tbsp. (30 ml) Sesame Seed Oil
(or other carrier oil)

3. Roll on for Constipation Relief
Black pepper essential oil has been used for helping with digestive problems, including constipation. Try rolling this blend on your lower back and lower abdomen to help get things moving.

Constipation Blend:
1 drop black pepper
1 drop lavender
1 drop marjoram
1 drop fennel
1 tsp. (5 ml) carrier oil like fractionated coconut oil, sweet almond oil, or jojoba oil
Add oils to a 5 ml roll-on bottle, or double the recipe if using a 10 ml roll-on bottle. Fill the bottle the rest of the way with a carrier oil.


4. Add to a Warm Bath
Black pepper can help you warm up when cold. Try this warming bath when you feel particularly cold.

Warming Bath Salts:
2 drops black pepper
5 drops juniper berry
5 drops lavender
1 cup (240 g) epsom salt
Mix ingredients together. Add 1/4–1/2 cup (60–120 g) of bath salts to the bathtub as it fills up with water.

5. Add to Cooking Recipes
Black pepper essential oil can be added to any of your favorite cooking recipes. Just use 1 drop of black pepper oil for every 1/4–1/2 tsp. (0.5–1 g) of ground black pepper. For recipes that call for less black pepper, try dipping a toothpick in the oil and stirring it into the mixture. These are a few of our recipes that include black pepper essential oil:

Sources:
Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 8th Edition, p. 43.

Healing Oils: 500 Formulas for Aromatherapy by Carol & David Schiller

Essential Oil Spotlight: Cinnamon

Cinnamon essential oil (Cinnamomum zeylanicum) is steam-distilled from the bark of the tree. It contains antibacterial, antidepressant, antifungal, anti-infectious (intestinal, urinary), anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antiparasitic, antiseptic, antispasmodic (light), antiviral, astringent, immune-stimulant, purifying, sexual-stimulant, and warming properties. It also enhances the action and activity of other oils.

Cinnamon essential oil is commonly used for airborne bacteria, bacterial infections, bites/stings, breathing, diabetes, diverticulitis, fungal infections, immune system (stimulates), infection, libido (low), mold, pancreas support, physical fatigue, pneumonia, typhoid, vaginal infection, vaginitis, viral infections, and warming the body.

Historically, this most ancient of spices was included in just about every prescription issued in ancient China. It was regarded as a tranquilizer, tonic, and stomachic and as being good for depression and a weak heart.

This oil may be beneficial for circulation, colds, coughs, digestion, exhaustion, flu, infections, rheumatism, and warts. Cinnamon oil fights viral and infectious diseases, and testing has yet to find a virus, bacteria, or fungus that can survive in its presence.

Applications of Cinnamon Essential Oil and Safety Data

Cinnamon essential oil is one of the strongest essential oils, and care should be taken when using it.
Topical Application: Before applying cinnamon oil topically, make sure to dilute it 1:3 (1 drop essential oil to at least 3 drops carrier oil). Please note that repeated use of cinnamon essential oil can result in extreme contact sensitization, so make sure to dilute well, avoid when pregnant, and frequently give your body a break in between uses.
Aromatic Application: When diffusing cinnamon essential oil, be careful to not inhale directly from the diffuser, as it may irritate the nasal membranes.
Internal Application: Cinnamon essential oil can be used in cooking, but make sure to start with only a toothpick and add more if needed.

5 Ways To Use Cinnamon Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
Try this blend in your diffuser to increase your mental alertness:

2. Use in a Romantic Massage Oil
Because cinnamon essential oil is known to be an aphrodisiac and is a warming oil, it makes a great addition to a romantic massage oil. Here is a great recipe to help you and your spouse enjoy an intimate massage together:

Romantic Massage Oil:
5 drops ylang ylang
1 drop cinnamon
1 Tbsp. (15 ml) carrier oil such as Fractionated Coconut Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, or Jojoba Oil.

3. Add to a Breath-Freshening Spray
Try adding 2–3 drops each of cinnamon and orange essential oil to this Essential Oil Breath Spray recipe.

4. Add to Cooking Recipes
Cinnamon essential oil is great to add to any of your favorite recipes. We had a difficult time picking from our recipes that use cinnamon essential oil, but here are some of our favorites:

5. Protect Your Plants with This Gardening Spray
Keep birds and bugs from eating your plants with this garden spray.

Protective Gardening Spray

  • Servings: Yield=1 gallon (about 4 liters)
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. To a small glass bowl, add the emulsifier, essential oils, and dish soap in order; gently stir after adding each ingredient. Pour a little (up to 1 cup or 250 ml) water into the bowl, and stir to combine.
  2. Pour mixture into a gallon-sized (4-liter) water jug (mostly full of water). Place the cap on, and carefully shake to combine. Pour mixture into your 16 oz. glass spray bottles.
  3. To use, spray the tops and bottoms of the plant leaves. It is best to spray on a cloudy day or in the evening so the sun and cinnamon essential oil combination doesn’t burn the plants. Apply every couple weeks or as needed. Wait 2–3 days after spraying to harvest any food.

To learn more about cinnamon essential oil, see the book Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils.

Sources: Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 8th Edition, pp. 48–49; 329–30.

Essential Oil Spotlight: Frankincense


frankincenseFrankincense essential oil is steam-distilled from the resin of trees and shrubs in the Burseraceae family. The aroma helps to focus energy, improve concentration, and enhance meditation.

Historically, frankincense was used in the Middle East as an ingredient in holy incense for sacrificial ceremonies and to improve communication with the Creator. The French use it for asthma, depression, and ulcers.

This oil acts as an antidepressant, anticancer, antiseptic, and sedative. It is commonly used to treat allergies, bronchitis, colds, headaches, sores, strep throat, and typhoid. Frankincense is generally recognized as safe for consumption by the FDA and can be used topically, diffused, or taken orally.

To learn more about frankincense essential oil and many other pure essential oils, see the book Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils.

Sources: Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 8th Edition, p. 63.

Essential Oil Spotlight: Clove

cloveClove essential oil is steam distilled from the bud and stem of the Myrtaceae. Its spicy, warm, and woody aroma is said to be a mental stimulant.

Historically, clove was used for skin infections, digestive upsets, intestinal parasites, hernia, childbirth, and toothaches.

The French use clove for impotence, intestinal parasites, memory deficiency, pain, plague, toothache, and wounds. The Chinese also use cloves for diarrhea, hernia, bad breath, and bronchitis.

Clove oil is believed to support the cardiovascular, digestive, immune, and respiratory systems. It may also be used to treat arthritis, insect bites, rheumatism, and warts. Clove is known to have antifungal, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties.

Used aromatically, clove may influence healing, improve memory, and create a feeling of courage. It is regarded as safe for human consumption by the FDA and can be taken internally or used topically.

To learn more about clove essential oil, see the book Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils.

Sources: Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 8th Edition, p. 52.

 

Essential Oil Spotlight: Petitgrain

Petitgrain essential oil (Citrus aurantium) is obtained from the bitter orange tree. It is distilled from leaves and sometimes the tips of young twigs, but in earlier centuries it was extracted from unripe oranges, picked when they were still green and no bigger than a cherry, hence the French term petit grain, meaning “small grain.” This was uneconomic because in the effort to produce petitgrain essential oil, the crops of mature oranges were reduced drastically. So rather than producing oil from the unripe fruit, producers started distilling oil from the leaves of the tree and kept the oil’s original name. Because of its very pleasing scent, petitgrain has been used extensively in high-quality perfumes and cosmetics.

Petitgrain essential oil contains antibacterial, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, deodorant, and stimulant (for digestive and nervous systems) properties.

It is commonly used for depression, focus, greasy/oily hair, stress, and uplifting one’s mood. This oil may also help with acne, dyspepsia, fatigue, flatulence, greasy hair, insomnia, and excessive perspiration.

Petitgrain essential oil can be applied neat (with no dilution) on adults when used topically on area of concern or reflex points. It can also be diffused or inhaled directly and is generally regarded as safe for internal use (often consumed in small amounts in capsules).

5 Ways To Use Petitgrain Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
Petitgrain is a great oil to diffuse because it has the ability to uplift one’s mood and may help with stress, focus, and depression. Try these blends in your diffuser:

2. Roll on for Sleep
Petitgrain essential oil is also beneficial in helping with insomnia (especially when sleeplessness is caused because of loneliness or stress). Here is a good recipe to put in a roll-on bottle to rub on the bottoms of your feet at night when you need a little help falling asleep:

Sleepy Time with Petitgrain Roll-on Blend:
2 drops lavender
2 drops Roman chamomile
7 drops petitgrain
Add oils to a 5 ml roll-on for short-term use or a 10 ml roll-on for daily use. Fill the roll-on the rest of the way with a carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil, sweet almond oil, or jojoba oil.

All-Natural Deodorant3. Add to Deodorant
Try putting petitgrain in your all-natural deodorant. You could even make your own using this recipe and replace the oils with this blend:
4 drops lime
4 drops orange
2 drops clove
2 drops petitgrain

4. Add to a Warm Bath
Petitgrain is most known for its ability to help with depression and for supporting the nervous system. It is a good alternative to use in place of bergamot essential oil when needed over a long period of time or when the photosensitive nature of bergamot is a problem (petitgrain essential oil is not a photosensitizer). Try adding petitgrain essential oil to your baths! Just mix the oil with epsom salt before adding to warm bathwater. Here are a few recipes to try:

A Refreshing Calm:
5 drops petitgrain
5 drops ylang ylang
5 drops orange
1/4 cup (60 g) Epsom Salt
Relaxing with Petitgrain:
5 drops petitgrain
5 drops lavender
3 drops fennel
2 drops orange
1/4 cup (60 g) Epsom Salt
Good Morning, Sunshine:
4 drops rosemary
6 drops grapefruit
5 drops petitgrain
1/4 cup (60 g) Epsom Salt

Bath woman

5. Care for Greasy/Oily Skin and Hair
Petitgrain essential oil has many applications in skincare because it helps to reduce over-production of sebum and is a gentle but effective antiseptic. This makes it a good oil for acne or oily dandruff. Just put a few drops in the final rinse after shampooing greasy hair, or apply after washing your face.

To learn more about petitgrain essential oil, see the book Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils.

Sources: Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 8th Edition, p. 101.
Healing Oils: 500 Formulas for Aromatherapy by Carol Schiller & David Schiller
Aromatherapy: An A–Z by Patricia Davis
Aromatherapy Blends & Remedies by Franzesca Watson

Essential Oil Spotlight: Rose

RoseRose essential oil is steam-distilled from flowers in the Rosaceae family. It can be applied topically, diffused, or inhaled. Its pleasant floral aroma may promote emotional balance.

Historically, the healing properties of rose were used as a medicine to aid with digestion, menstrual problems, headaches, poor circulation, and skin issues. It is still used widely in the East.

Rose has antihemorrhagic, anti-infectious, aphrodisiac, and sedative properties. It may be used to treat asthma, frigidity, sprains, nervous tension, ulcers, and wounds.

To learn more about rose essential oil, see the book Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils.

Source: Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 7th Edition, p. 155.