Basil Essential Oil
Fancy Latin Name:
Where It Comes From:
Basil is a short, compact herb grown in a number of countries including Egypt, Greece, Italy, Iran, India, Thailand, and Mexico. The essential oil is most commonly steam-distilled from its leaves and flowers and has a thin, pale yellow appearance. Basil comes in different “chemotypes” (ct.), which determine its aroma and usage. The essential oil Osmia uses from Egypt is a soft, woody linalool chemotype that smells exactly like a freshly crushed basil leaf. The methyl chavicol chemotype has an anise-like, spicy scent. Generally, basil ct. linalool tends to have a more appealing scent profile for perfumery and skincare than basil ct. methyl chavicol, as not everyone likes the smell of licorice!
Basil essential oil is effective for stimulating the brain and helps to soothe mental fatigue, stress, and depression. Start your day with a few drops of this energizing oil to put a spring in your step - and I do mean a few drops. A little bit goes a long way since basil is a high-intensity essential oil; its strong aroma loves to take center stage in an essential oil blend if given the opportunity. The simplest way to use basil oil is to add a few drops to a tissue and inhale ten times or add a few drops to the corner of your shower away from the running water for some instant aromatherapy. Basil is also excellent in the early stages of a headache, and can prevent progression if you get to it in time.
Basil is antimicrobial and shares many skincare uses with rosemary essential oil. When added to a balm or oil rub in the proper dilution, basil can help to alleviate sore muscles as well as other aches and pains. It is used in hair care to help stimulate hair growth - try adding 2-3 drops to your hair conditioner, or making a hair oil with four ounces of jojoba, 5 drops of basil, 5 drops of lavender, and 5 drops of rosemary essential oils for a once-a-week pre-shampoo treatment.
Things to Know:
Feeling the sniffles creeping up on you? Basil, especially the methyl chavicol chemotype, is a great essential oil for colds. You can add a few drops to boiling water for steam inhalation or one drop to a cup of tea and let its antibacterial/antiviral qualities work their magic. Basil can also help calm nausea and promote digestive health if taken internally. This essential oil is not recommended for people who are pregnant or have seizure disorders.
- Basilicum is a Greek word meaning royal, kingly, or a type of serpent with a spot resembling a crown on its head. That last bit makes more sense when you consider that the basilisk, a mythological snake/chicken hybrid, also draws its name from this origin. Luckily, unlike some reptilian chickens I know, basil won’t petrify you with its royal aroma.
- One of my personal favorite bits about basil is its symbolism in Victorian floriography - if you got a bouquet with basil back then, you had to watch your back!
- Try adding one drop of basil ct. linalool essential oil to your salad dressing or pasta sauce - you won’t believe how it brightens and heightens the flavor.
Osmia Products with Basil Essential Oil:
With love and bundles of fresh basil from us to you,
The information contained in this post is for educational interest only and is not intended to represent claims for actions of basil. This information is not intended to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any physical or mental illness or disease.