Essential Oils Descriptions & Precautions A-J


Allspice: Its aroma resembles a mixture of pepper, clove and cinnamon. This oil is stimulating and vitalizing. It has been used to treat depression, nervous exhaustion, arthritis, fatigue, stiffness, flatulence, and indigestion. Debatable whether it should be used in massage since it is such a powerful oil. May irritate the skin and mucous membranes. A very warming oil, gets the circulation going. Blends well with frankincense, ginger, lemon and orange.

Anise: Spicy, warm, licorice-like aroma. Fishermen use it to mask human scent while fishing. Well known for its effect on the digestive system. Could ease palpitations. May have a good effect on asthma and breathing difficulties. Sexual problems such as impotence and frigidity may be helped. Said to control lice, good for infectious skin diseases. Blends well with fennel, petitgrain and rosewood.

Balsam Perú: Brown liquid, vanilla-like scent. Natural fixative can make a little scent go a long way. Also used as an anti-infective. Used on chafed skin to soothe. Exotic aroma, anchoring, strengthening and imparts a rich, earthy scent to perfumes. Some believe it is a skin sensitizer. Use with caution.

Basil, Sweet: Warm, fiery scent. Blends specially well with Lavender. Good for tired, overworked muscles, as a mouthwash for mouth sores and infected gums, for chest infections and digestive problems. Blends well with bergamot, lavender, neroli and verbena.

Bay Rum: Light, spicy, sweet aroma. May act as an appetite stimulant and to settle stomach pains. General aches and pains, as well as rheumatic pains may be alleviated. Blends well with rose, cedarwood, and eucalyptus.

Benzoin: Benzoin itself is the pathological product that forms when the bark is cut. It's made up mainly of Benzoic acid, Benzoate and some vanillin. Its used as an expectorant and pulmonary antiseptic, for acne, eczema, and psoriasis. It's used as a preservative in food. Some "experts" consider it a skin sensitizer but we don't know what proof they use to substantiate this claim.

Bergamot (with and without Bergaptene): Uplifting, spicy, sweet scent; like orange and lemons with floral overtones. Inhaled, it relaxes the nervous system and acts as a digestive. Also known as an expectorant, antidepressant and antiseptic. Blends well with chamomile, lavender, neroli and geranium. Bergamot is a photosensitizer (increases the skin reaction to sunlight and makes it more likely to burn) and the photosensitizing effect can last for several days which is why we offer both types of Bergamot. Bergaptene free Bergamot reduces this risk.

Birch, sweet: A powerful oil which could irritate sensitive skin. Best used with caution or not at all. Has an invigorating, even rousing effect on the spirits. Stimulates the sweat glands aiding the body in releasing harmful toxins. A lymphatic cleaner and helps keep infection at bay. Increases the flow of urine. Its diuretic properties could also help with obesity and cellulitis. Could be good of rheumatism and muscle pain generally since it eliminates accumulation of uric acid in the joints. Blends well with chamomile, frankincense, lemon and cajeput.

Cajeput: Sweet, penetrating aroma, camphor-like. Stimulates the mind and assists with getting it back into balance. Soothes colic and vomiting. Could help with cystitis. The best essential oil to apply undiluted to fire ant bites, preferably immediately after being bitten. Blends well with bergamot, clove, lavender and rosewood.

Camphor: Fresh, clean and very piercing. Analgesic, antidepressant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, diuretic, stimulant, laxative and vermifuge. A very powerful oil, overdosing could cause convulsions and vomiting. Should be avoided in pregnancy and people suffering from epilepsy and asthma. Sedates nervy types particularly when associated with depression. Raises low blood pressure. Warms and cools the body where necessary. Good for constipation and diarrhea. Also helpful with gastroenteritis. May be helpful with stiff muscles. It is cooling on the skin and, therefore, reduces inflammatory conditions. Blends well with basil, cajeput and chamomile.

Carrot Seed: Slightly sweet and dry aroma. Used to treat jaundice and other liver disorders. Recommended for mature skin and/or wrinkled skin. Blends well with bergamot, lemon, orange and rosemary.

Cassia: Cinnamon-like aroma. Used to stimulate the pancreas. Blends well with all the spice and citrus oils, geranium and black pepper.

Cedarwood, Atlas: Sweet woody aroma with improves as the oil ages; it is a dark, amber viscous liquid. Some of its properties are antiseptic, antiseborrheic, astringent, and aids in the removal of body fat. Used externally for cellulite. Blends well with bergamot, clary sage, frankincense, oakmoss and rosemary.

Cedarwood, Virginia: Sweet cedar, woody aroma, reminiscent of sandalwood. Not considered a true cedarwood as is Atlas. Calms nervous tension and states of anxiety. Expectorant, dries phlegm. Blends well with bergamot, cinnamon, frankincense, rose, and rosemary.

Chamomile, German and Roman: Both have a fruity, apple-like aroma. Both contain Azuline, a powerful anti-inflammatory. German has slightly more and is a deeper blue color. Both have analgesic, antidepressant, antirheumatic and sedative properties, among many other properties. Blend well with bergamot, jasmine, palmarosa, rose and ylang ylang.

Cinnamon: Spicy, sharp, and sweet aroma. Used as an insecticide, antispasmodic and aphrodisiac. Eases colds and breathing difficulties. Very powerful, should be used with extreme care, skin irritant. Blends well with clove, frankincense, lavender, orange and thyme.

Citronella: Slightly sweet and lemony aroma. Used as an insecticide and antidepressant. Its most useful quality seems to be as an insect repellant. May also help pets get rid of fleas. Also known to clear the mind so may be useful against headaches and migraines. Blends well with citrus oils, peppermint, and eucalyptus.

Clary Sage: Heavy, herbal, nutty fragrance. A relaxing, warming oil, eases nervous tension. Hormone balancer, may regulate scanty periods. Also soothes digestive problems. Blends well with bergamot, lavender, lime, and geranium.

Clove: Clove has a spicy and penetrating aroma. Highly irritant to the skin, must be diluted. Beneficial to the digestive system, effective against diarrhea, vomiting and spasms. Can help toothache, rheumatism, arthritis and mouth sores. Blends well with basil, cinnamon, citronella, and orange.

Combava Petitgrain: Appears anti-rheumatic, sedative. Useful for skin inflammation, avoid on sensitive skin. Has been known to assist with muscular pains, arthritis and rheumatism. May help with curbing anxiety, stress, anger, and insomnia. Blends well with frankincense and lavender.

Coriander: Slightly pungent, sweet and spicy aroma. Stimulates the mind, especially in the presence of fatigue and tension. May help memory. Relieves stomach gas and cramps. May have some effect on bad breath. Alleviates muscle spasms. Blends well with bergamot, lemon and jasmine.

Cypress: Cypress has a woody and slightly spicy aroma. Its effect on varicose veins is well known. Regulates menstrual cycle. Soothes anger. Blends well with bergamot, lavender, lemon, pine and sandalwood.

Eucalyptus citriodora: Woody, lemon aroma. Very effective insect repellent due to a higher citronellal content than citronella.

Eucalyptus 70/75 and 80/85 (these numbers apply to the content of eucalyptol): Camphorous, woody undertones. The following applies to both eucalyptus: Some of their properties are decongestant, insecticide, analgesic, antirheumatic and antiseptic. Inhibits proliferation of the cold virus. Deters mosquitoes. Cools emotions, aids concentration. Effective in all types of fever, lowers the temperature. Helps with cystitis. Clears up sinus congestion. Blends well with vetiver, peppermint and clary sage.

Fennel: Floral, herby and slightly spicy aroma. It is antiseptic, diuretic, insecticide and laxative. It is an excellent body cleanser, may rid the system of toxins from alcohol and excessive eating, great for hangovers. Tonic to the digestion. Good for vomiting and colic. Antispasmodic, relieves colic, constipation and gas. Decreases appetite. Increases milk flow in nursing mothers. Blends well with lavender, lemon, rose, and sandalwood.

Fir Needle: Clear, balsamic, and refreshing aroma. It is antiseptic, expectorant and sedative. May have a beneficial effect on chest conditions, such as fluid and mucous. Helps with muscle aches. Blends well with basil, cedarwood and frankincense.

Frankincense: Woody, spicy, incense-like. It is antiseptic, diuretic, digestive and sedative. Very helpful in clearing the lungs. Eases shortness of breath. May diminish effects of cystitis and genito-urinary infections. May relieve heavy periods, acts as a tonic to the uterus. Soothes the stomach, eases belching. Blends well with basil, geranium, lavender, orange and sandalwood.

Geranium: Sweet, heavy aroma, somewhat like rose. It is analgesic, anticoagulant, antidepressant, antiseptic, and insecticide. Calms anxiety, lifts the spirit, assists with depression. Useful with premenstrual tension. May assist with menopausal problems such as vaginal dryness and heavy periods. Assists with breast inflammation. Helps clear the body of toxins which may be helpful with addictions. Stimulates the lymphatic system which keeps infection at bay. Eases neuralgia. Blends well with basil, bergamot, carrot seed, jasmine, lavender and rose. Geranium Bourbon: Also called Réunion ‘Geranium’oil. Most of the world’s supply comes from this area, formerly called Bourbon which is an island east of Madagascar. Very strong roselike odor with a high Citronellol content.

Ginger: Spicy, woody, warm, with a hint of lemon. It is antiseptic, analgesic, expectorant, laxative, and aphrodisiac. Aids memory, cheers one up. Eases sore throats. Settles the digestive system, effective against nausea, hangovers, jet lag, sea and travel sickness. Relieves cramps, rheumatic pains and muscle spasms. A valuable remedy in cases of impotence. Blends well with cajeput, cinnamon, eucalyptus, frankincense, geranium, orange and verbena.

Grapefruit, Pink: Has a sweet, sharp, citrusy aroma. It is antidepressant, antiseptic, diuretic and disinfectant. Invaluable in times of stress, uplifts and revives the spirit. May have an effect on obesity and fluid retention. Could help with cellulite. It is a tonic to the liver. Relieves migraine and premenstrual tension and jet lag. Blends well with bergamot, cedarwood, frankincense, and lavender.

Helichrysum Italicum (Immortelle, Everlasting): Strongly woody with a hint of spice. Antispasmodic, antiviral, astringent, diuretic, emollient, expectorant, hepatic, and sedative. Seems to lessen the effects of shock, fears and phobias and said to relieve depression as well. It is a rejuvenating oil which promotes cell growth, helping to rebuild tissues and energize the organs. Clears the body of candida apparently, which often thrives when vitality is low. Helps to remove mucous from the lungs and induces relaxation and sleep. Said to ease the discomfort of rheumatism and general aches and pains. Reputedly has a beneficial action on cystitis and herpes simplex. Blend with rosehip seed oil for scar formula, with lemon, geranium, for kick-smoking blend. Assists in healing scars, acne, dermatitis, boils and abscesses. Blends well with bergamot, chamomile, geranium, and frankincense.

Hyssop: Warm, sweet, penetrating aroma. It is antirheumatic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, cicatrizant, digestive, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, febrifuge, emollient, hypertensive, nervine, sedative, stimulant, stomachic, sudorific and vermifuge. This very potent oil is recommended in very low dosages, if at all. People suffering from epilepsy and high blood pressure should stay clear of it. Not to be used during pregnancy. Clears the mind, gives a feeling of alertness. Said to cure grief by clearing the spleen. Raises low blood pressure. Very effective on respiratory problems and viral infections such as colds, coughs, sore throat, bronchitis and asthma. It liquefies mucous and relieves bronchial spasm. Acts as a mild laxative, relieves stomach cramps, expels wind and is said to get rid of worms. Beneficial to the menstrual cycle, particularly with water retention during periods and effective against amenorrhoea and leucorrhoea. Blends well with fennel, lavender, and tangerine.

Jasmine: Sweet, flowery, exotic aroma. Called the "king of flower oils" has always had a reputation as an aphrodisiac. It is antidepressant, antiseptic, emollient and sedative. Tremendous remedy for severe depression. Calms the nerves. Effective in postpartum depression. Promotes flow of breast milk. Relieves spasm of the bronchi, calms irritating coughs. Blends well with bergamot, frankincense, rose, orange and sandalwood.

Juniper: Refreshing and slightly woody aroma. It is antiseptic, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, diuretic, and insecticide. Not to be used if you have any type of kidney or inflammatory problems. Effective diuretic and antiseptic of the genito-urinary tract, very valuable in treating cystitis and kidney stones. Helps with cellulitis. Clears intestinal mucous. Helpful in cases of gout and rheumatism as it helps to eliminate uric acid. Regulates period and eases painful cramps. Blends well with bergamot, cypress, frankincense, and sandalwood.