What is Neroli Essential Oil?
Neroli essential oil is a substance extracted from the magnificent flowers of the bitter (or sour) orange tree by stream distillation.
The tree belongs to the rutaceae family and has a very close relationship with the sweet orange tree, from which, another different essential oil is extracted. Its scientific name is Citrus Aurantium L, Citrus Sinensis or Lemon Citrus. This oil is native to Italy, where it got its name.
Currently, the orange blossom tree is grown in Egypt, France, Morocco and Tunisia, among others. However, the best quality neroli essential oil, comes from France.
This oil is pale yellow in color. Its aroma is particularly strong and will be pleasant for most people.
It is also called Orange Blossom Oil, Citrus Vulgaris, Citrus Bigaradier or Seville Orange.
The three essences of the bitter orange tree
The bitter orange bigaradier is one of the few trees that produce more than one essential oil in the same plant:
- Neroli or Azahar in the flowers,
- Petitgrain in the leaves and
- Bitter Orange in the skin of the fruits.
The first two are obtained by distilling the flowers or leaves with a stream of water vapor; the last one, scratching the skin and pressing the pulp.
This oil has therapeutic properties to soothe general physical pain, as well as to be used in the kitchen.
Origin of Neroli Essential Oil
It was at the beginning of the middle ages that the oil began to be extracted from the plants.
The origin of Neroli Essential Oil dates back to the mid-sixteenth century, when the Italian naturist Della Porte, extracted the flowers from the orange tree. From this white flowers, he obtained the substance with a pleasant aroma.
Its name comes from the Duchess of Neroli (Italian town). She used this essential oil in her gloves so that, each time someone greeted her, they would be impregnated with the aroma. In this way, people would remember her presence.
History of Neroli Essential Oil
The princess of Neroli, Marie Anne de La Trémoille, used Neroli oil as a daily perfume. She created a trend in the use of these oils as perfumes.
Over the years, neroli essential oil became known throughout the Roman continent.
Later, its use became popular among the prostitutes who lived throughout Madrid.
Neroli essential oil was also used by brides, as a symbol of virginity and purity. The bouquet they wore, was made from orange flowers and in their tiaras, they also used to put these fragrant flowers.
This oil is considered the most appreciated in its kind, thanks to its active components. Likewise, it is one of the few that can be consumed.
Its main characteristic is that it is very difficult to extract. For every kilogram of oil a ton of fresh flowers is required and therefore, it becomes expensive to acquire it.
Characteristics of Neroli Essential Oil
It is a pale yellow liquid, which, when exposed to light, tends to become reddish.
Its smell is similar to that of the flower and its taste is sweet and bitter. When in contact with temperature changes, it usually solidifies
Neroli oil is not easily soluble in water, but when mixed with alcohol, a pure and transparent substance is obtained.
Chemical composition of Neroli Essential Oil
Among the most important chemical components of neroli essential oil are:
Linalool (34% approx.), Linalyl Acetate (6-17%), Limonene (15% approx.), Pinene (provides antiseptic, anti-inflammatory properties), nerolidol (aroma), Geraniol (alcohol), Nerol (aromatic alcohol flowers), Methyl Anthranilate, Indole, Citral and Jasmine, among others.
Due to its composition, it does not have toxic effects or cause irritation.
How is Neroli Essential Oil obtained?
The orange flowers are collected during the months of April and May. Strictly in the very morning, when the sun comes out.
On the same day they are distilled by steam, which is cooled in stainless steel coils to separate the essence.
Although this precious essence has an intense aroma, the amount of essential oil that is obtained is very small. As we mention before, 1000 Kg. of flowers are needed to obtain 1 Kg. of essence.
The large quantity of aromatic water or hydrolate that is obtained, is used to perfume the laundry in the rinse, to be perfumed at the entrance to the temples, in cosmetics, in pastry and in the Teas industry.
This expensive essential oil is known in perfumery with the name of Neroli Bigaradier by the Duchess of the Trémoille. The “Nérola” that, as we mentioned previously, popularized the habit of perfuming the gloves with this aroma.
Properties of Neroli Essential Oil
Neroli was a fashionable perfume throughout the nineteenth century. Its fragrance has always evoked purity and cleanliness, which is why in the past, the clothes were perfumed with it.
On the other hand, neroli essential oil was known as a sexual desire enhancer and was added to many perfumes and drinks. Sugary toning drinks with suggestive names, which made sighs to romantics and corseted in love.
The orange blossom infusions were administered to strengthen the nerves and detoxify the blood.
Hydrolate calms anxiety and is very helpful in situations of shock and trauma. In addition, it is a natural tranquilizer that helps you fall asleep.
Other therapeutic properties that we can find in neroli essential oil are: Carminative, tonic and choleric, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, antiseptic, antifungal, anxiolytic and antidepressant, aphrodisiac, healing, bactericidal, digestive, antispasmodic, deodorant, hypnotic, cardiac tonic, stimulant of the nervous and circulatory systems.
It also has sedative, soothing, calming, and motor relaxant activities; antiseizure and anticonvulsant; and central and peripheral antinociceptive properties.
Works great as a menopausal symptoms and premenstrual syndrome (PMS) relief, and has endothelium- and smooth muscle-dependent vasodilator, hypotensive, antioxidant and anti-amnesic effects.
Benefits of Neroli Essential Oil
Neroli essential oil provides both, medicinal and cosmetic benefits, which stands out among all essential oils.
Among its most known benefits we have the following:
Strengthens the respiratory system
Orange blossom strengthens the respiratory system, tones the defensive system and eliminates spasms. This is why it is usually associated with Eucalyptus, Tea Tree and Hyssop to improve bronchitis, colds and flu. It is also effective against nervous asthma along with Laurel, Lavender and Marjoram essential oils.
Improves the cardio-circulatory system
The antispasmodic properties of esters are useful in mild cases of vascular spasms and coronary insufficiency. It is usually administered with Helichrysum and Basil. It also tones the lymphatic system, being effective in the reabsorption of edemas.
It acts on the nervous system
Neroli essential oil calms the cerebrospinal excitation, it reduces muscular spasms caused by nervous tension. The result is a decrease in fatigue and an energy recharge.
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Benefits for Skin
Neroli essential oil revitalizes all skin types, especially if it is dry, red and irritated. It stimulates cell regeneration and helps eliminate toxins. It also increases the elasticity of the skin.
On the other hand, it reduces scars and prevents and minimizes stretch marks and wrinkles. Likewise, it stimulates the epidermal circulation, avoiding the appearance of acne and pimples, both in dry skins and in sensitive skins.
Thanks to its fresh and pleasant aroma, the hydrolate is added to many anti-wrinkle cosmetic creams and lotions. Its cellular regeneration effect can be improved by mixing it with rose, geranium or palmarosa essential oil.
Mind and relaxing
The neroli clears the mind, relaxes the nerves and purifies the spirit. This is a great help in cases of mental agitation with insomnia and palpitations.
Regulates the nervous system in cases of mental tension, depression and emotional tension.
In these situations, the digestive system often suffers and the anxiety is accompanied by acidity, loss of appetite, gallbladder disorders and constipation. These symptoms improve when the psychological tension decreases.
It facilitates the relationship between the mind and the body, especially when it is used with techniques that increase body awareness such as yoga, stretching, meditation, etc.
Its sensual aroma invites the approach in the relationship. It helps to create a conciliatory and communicative environment. It is ideal for relaxing, sensual massages and lymphatic drainage.
Strengthens the musculature
It helps in the regeneration of muscle tissue and promotes its growth. It is an immediate relief against muscle cramps and contractures.
Cleans and detoxifies the organism naturally, helping to eliminate toxins and burn body fat.
Strengthens the immune system
It improves the immune system protecting us against viruses, respiratory diseases, allergies or bronchodilators.
Relieves Pre Menstrual Syndrome
In uterine spasms it is an effective relief, as are Ylang-Ylang and Basil oil.
Uses of Neroli Essential Oil
Stretch marks and scars
Its components help regenerate cells, reducing stretch marks and scars.
The main use of neroli essential oil is as an usual ingredient in the production of perfumes or cologne waters.
For wrinkles and acne
Thanks to its moisturizing effects and its qualities as an excellent cellular regenerator, it visibly reduces wrinkles and fine lines.
Likewise, due to its sedative properties, it acts on sensitive skins and broken capillaries, alleviating discomfort.
Additionally, because it is moisturizing and antioxidant, it controls the process of toxins formation and excess fat produced by sebaceous glands, which directly affect the formation of acne.
Repairs the hair from environmental damage, dyes, bleaching or by the continuous chemical treatments to which it is subjected.
To treat this type of damage, it is important to use appropriate products. These can be accompanied with natural recipes such as essential oils. In this case, neroli essential oil is a good alternative, since it provides vitamins and natural salts that help to counteract those damages.
An effective technique in which it can be used, is as a mask. Place a few drops on the hair and scalp, massage for 10 minutes, so that the scalp absorbs the nutrients. Also, a small amount of neroli essential oil can be added to the conditioner or styling cream. Neroli oil will not alter its components, on the contrary, it will reinforce the benefits, improving the appearance, providing shine and more strength to the hair.
Massaging the area of the body to be treated, gently and constantly, will allow the skin to absorb the properties of the oil.
To relieve headaches, place a couple of drops on the temple and massage gently for 1-3 minutes.
For attacks of anxiety or stress, rub a couple of drops of neroli essential oil on the nape of the neck, back of the hands and on the soles of the feet. In this way, it will act as a sedative of the nervous system.
It is important to note that neroli essential oil should not be used pure, but combined with a carrier oil that softens its components.
For arthritis pain
Arthritis is a disease that is reflected by swelling and pain in the joints and surroundings areas.
Essential oils are a natural by-product that come from plants, flowers and leaves, which have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antifungal and antibacterial properties.
Such is the case of neroli essential oil, which, thanks to these properties and medicinal benefits, is a powerful ally to treat and control the ailments caused by arthritis.
It can be used topically through focused relaxing massages. In this way, the ailments will be relieved. Additionally, the process of releasing toxins will be stimulated, which intervenes directly in the acceleration of this disease.
Neroli essential oil as an insecticide:
Due to its citrus components, neroli oil can be used in environmental diffusers that will keep the place fresh, pure and free of annoying mosquitoes.
Likewise, it can be used as an ingredient in lotions or ointments to turn it into mosquito repellents, which will keep the skin protected from stings.
Pregnancy and Neroli Essential Oil
Due to its relaxing and stimulating properties, the use of neroli essential oil is recommended during pregnancy. It is one of the few oils allowed during this stage, due to its minimal invasive and allergic action.
When used in diffusers or therapeutic baths, it helps to generate well-being, reduces states of anxiety, depression and stress.
By making gentle massages, it helps to balance tensions and control the fluctuating emotions that pregnancy produces.
On the other hand, eliminates discomfort in tired feet, thanks to its anti-inflammatory effect.
It is important to keep in mind that when the person is sensitive to any of the components of neroli essential oil, do not use it. If there is insistence, do it under medical supervision.
Neroli Essential Oil and breastfeeding
Yes, it is safe to use neroli essential oil during breastfeeding, provided it is not in its natural form. That is, it must be combined with a carrier oil; or, use it in small quantities without abusing its use.
Is Neroli Essential Oil good for babies?
Because it is a natural by-product, neroli essential oil can be used in babies, but not topically, because it can create an allergic reaction to some of its components. This can be used with environmental diffuser to help create an environment of tranquility and relaxation when the baby is restless. In addition, it will help the baby to fall asleep.
Aromatherapy and Neroli Essential Oil
Neroli essential oil has a tranquilizing action, highly used in aromatherapy. As an alternative relaxation technique, it helps to balance and maintain a good physical and mental state.
In addition, it collaborates in a very beneficial way on the whole body, creating a stimulating, emotional and romantic environment. It also elevates the spirit and calms agitations or stress situations.
It can be said that neroli essential oil, in aromatherapy, is a way of self-purification. It helps to eliminate negative thoughts and unpleasant habits for health.
For all the reasons mentioned above, it is called “anxiolytic essential oil”.
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Side effects, contraindications and warnings of Neroli Essential Oil
The side effect of neroli essential oil is its photosensitivity. Therefore, we should not expose ourselves to the sun when the use is topical. In this way, we will avoid unwanted spots.
Neroli essential oil, when used by people sensitive to any of the components, can create hypersensitivity.
Also, when consumed by those suffering from colitis, irritable bowel syndrome or gastric ulcers, irreversible acute complications can occur.
Its use is not recommended in children under 6 years old. If used, know the alcohol content for use in children under 2 years old.
Avoid its use in patients with hepatopathies, digestive problems, chronic allergies, respiratory and nervous system diseases.
Do not use directly, it must be diluted in a carrier oil to avoid unwanted effects.
Observations: Recommended oral use. Allergen
Where to buy Neroli Essential Oil?
Generally, good quality oils, that is, 100% pure and not mixed with other substances, can be found in specialized natural herb stores.
If you can not reach a trusted naturist or herbalist shop near you, here are some recommendations:
Scent Characteristics: Light, sweet, floral scent with a hint of citrus.
Our 100% Pure Essential Oils are extracted from the root, bark, wood, seed, fruit, leaf, or flower of a freshly harvested plant.
We source only the finest quality essential oils from highly regarded suppliers and distillers from around the world, many with whom we’ve worked with for decades.
Many of our oils are steam-distilled or cold-pressed, therefore retaining the essential odor, aroma, taste, medicinal, and therapeutic properties of the plant, resulting in a superior quality, and highly concentrated essence. Shop here.
Tips for a better performance and duration of your oils:
- Store them in a dark glass bottle, never plastic, not even when blended with a carrier oil.
- Keep them in cool, dark places, away from sources of heat and light.
- Maintain the container that holds it tightly closed, since they are very volatile and also, their properties would be lost or modified.