Patchouli essential oil is popular in aromatherapy because it is a great balancer. The essential oil is relaxing yet stimulating. Steam distillation of the leaves yields the essential oil of the patchouli plant. Patchouli essential oil is rich with Patchoulol, a highly grounding chemical component. Because of this constituent, and others like it, patchouli essential oil has a grounding and balancing effect on emotions.
The patchouli plant is a bushy herb in the mint family and is popular for its rich, musky-sweet fragrance and is a standard in the perfume industry. In addition, many scented products such as laundry detergents and air fresheners get their distinctive scent from patchouli.
But patchouli’s great aroma is just one benefit of the essential oil. Don’t overlook patchouli’s incredible skin care benefits. Patchouli may help with several irritating skin conditions. By adding patchouli to your daily facial routine for a smooth and glowing complexion. As a cell rejuvenator, the oil is helpful in healing wounds and reducing the appearance of scars.
Patchouli is also an important incense ingredient. Both patchouli oil and incense underwent a surge in popularity in the US and Europe in the late 1960s and early 1970s, thanks to the “Hippie” movement. In some cultures, use patchouli leaves to make an herbal tea. Some eat patchouli leaves as a vegetable or use them as a seasoning.
Patchouli Essential Oil History
Like most essential oils, patchouli has been used for centuries in Malaysia, China, and Japan as medicine. Patchouli turns out to have a rich history, partially because it repels insects. It was a common practice of Oriental silk traders to ship their fine cloth with dried patchouli leaves. Not only did the leaves prevent the mating of moths on the dealers’ silk, but they also stopped the insect from laying eggs on the silks as well.
As a result, the silk took on the pleasant aroma of the patchouli leaves during shipment. Before long, the distinctive scent of patchouli became a mark of authenticity in the trade of fabric goods. In fact, the scent of patchouli became so identifiable an indicator of true ‘Oriental’ fabric, English and French garment makers felt it necessary to scent their imitation products with patchouli to ensure their market acceptance.
So, a practice that began as a means of protecting silk, made patchouli the aroma of affluence. Napoleon Bonaparte attained some patchouli scented cashmeres, through his vast travels to Egypt and brought them back to France. This mysterious scent of patchouli and its origin were kept secret, and it was not until the year 1837, that the smell and the source were identified to the remainder of the western world.
Today, patchouli oil has many uses beyond preventing holes from being eaten in cloth.
Patchouli Essential Oil Uses
Patchouli is beneficial to the skin in many ways. It is often used to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, blemishes, and minor skin imperfections and to promote a smooth, glowing complexion.Apply one to two drops to back of the neck after a long day of work.
- Combine Patchouli with Peppermint and apply to the forehead, temples after a long day of work.
- Apply one to two drops to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, blemishes, or problem skin areas, or add to your favorite moisturizer.
- Combine with Vetiver and apply to the bottoms of feet to help calm emotions.
- Add three to four drops in a diffuser to help provide grounding and balance emotions.
- Promotes a smooth, glowing complexion.
- Recognized for its musky-sweet aroma.
Directions for Use
You can diffuse Patchouli essential oil, rub it on your skin and take it internally.
- Diffusion: Use three to four drops in the diffuser of your choice.
- Internal: Dilute one drop in 4 fl. oz. of liquid. You can also place two drops in a Veggie Capsule and take with water.
- Topically: Apply one to two drops to the desired area. You may want to dilute with Fractionated Coconut Oil or other natural oil to minimize any skin sensitivity.
As with all essential oils, please be aware of possible skin sensitivity. Keep patchouli essential oil out of the reach of children. Avoid contact with eyes, inner ears, and sensitive areas. If you are pregnant, nursing, or under a doctor’s care, consult your physician before using patchouli oil.