Neroli Essential Oil : Benefits, Uses, DIY Recipes And Precautions
Neroli essential oil is a versatile oil that has a multitude of health-related uses. The oil is useful for physical, psychological and physiological purposes. It has an aroma that has therapeutic benefits when used in aromatherapy. Here, let us learn more about this amazing essential oil, its properties and uses.
What Is Neroli Essential Oil?
Neroli essential oil is extracted from the flowers of the citrus tree Citrus aurantium var. amara which is also called marmalade orange, bitter orange and bigarade orange. (The popular fruit preserve, marmalade, is made from it.) Neroli essential oil from the bitter orange tree is also known as orange blossom oil. It was native to Southeast Asia, but with trade and with its popularity, the plant began to be grown all over the world.
This plant is believed to be a cross or hybrid between the mandarin orange and pomelo. The essential oil is extracted from the flowers of the plant using the steam distillation process. This method of extraction ensures that the structural integrity of the oil remains intact. Also, as the process does not use any chemicals or heat, the resulting product is said to be 100% organic.
The flowers and its oil, since ancient times, have been renowned for its therapeutic properties. The plant (and ergo its oil) has been used as a traditional or herbal medicine as a stimulant. It is also used as an ingredient in many cosmetic and pharmaceutical products and in perfumery. The popular Eau-de-Cologne has neroli oil as one of the ingredients.
Neroli essential oil smells rich and floral, but with undertones of citrus. The citrus scent is due to the citrus plant from which it is extracted and it smells rich and floral because it is extracted from the flowers of the plant. Neroli oil has almost similar effects as the other citrus based essential oils. It has many therapeutic properties including antidepressant, sedative, stimulant and tonic.
For more details of its properties, check out the table below. Some of the active ingredients of the essential oil that impart the medicinal properties to the oil are geraniol, alpha- and beta- pinene, and neryl acetate.
Neroli Essential Oil
Citrus aurantium var. amara
Antiseptic, carminative, antidepressant, insecticide, bactericidal, cytophylaxis, sedative, antispasmodic, stomachic, digestive, stimulant, tonic
Geraniol, alpha- and beta- pinene, neryl acetate, farnesol, linalool, alpha-terpinene, nerolidol, nerol, indole, camphene, methyl anthranilate
Rich Floral and citrusy
Blends well with
Geranium, lavender, ylang ylang, jasmine, sandalwood, benzoin, wild orange, rosemary, cedarwood, bergamot, frankincense and magnolia essential oils
Ylang ylang or valerian essential oil
16 Health Benefits of Neroli Essential Oil
The essential oil of neroli or orange blossom oil has several medicinal benefits that are necessary for a healthy life. Neroli essential oil uses and benefits include preventing, curing and treating several ailments affecting the body and mind.
1. Useful Against Depression
Depression has become a part and parcel of daily lives. No one can escape this mental health condition. As per a statistics for the year 2022 almost 7% of the world population suffers from some form of depression. And what is more concerning is that the highest rate of depression is from the age group of 12 to 25. Even those who seem to be having a good time have something lurking in the deepest corners of their mind.
In fact there have been a couple of ultra rich millionaire celebrities who have spoken about their mental health issues. It is always good to identify mental health issues early on ad start treatment. Essential oils including that of neroli have a good effect on depression and chronic depression. Inhaling the aroma of neroli invigorates the body and mind to deal with such conditions.
A research done on April 2020 and published in the Reviews on New Drug Targets in Age-Related Disorders analyzes how essential oils rich in linalool, geraniol and citronellol could lower depression. Neroli oil has good amounts of all 3 components and hence is useful for depression. (1)
Various studies have shown that diffusing essential oil of neroli tackles depression in people. One such study found that the antidepressant properties of the oil was due to its compounds linalool, geraniol and citronellol.
2. Anti-anxiety Oil
Anxiety is another mental distress that must be taken care of with natural methods. Anxiety and anxiety attacks can be resolved by forming a routine that overcomes the problem. Inhaling the aroma of neroli oil is a good way to train the brain on how to overcome anxiety.
The oil of neroli has anxiolytic properties that lessen anxiety. A randomized controlled trial done in February 2022 evaluated non-pharmacological methods to reduce the anxiety and pain during childbirth. Aromatherapy with neroli essential oil was used to ascertain if diffusing aroma could lower pain and anxiety. It was conclude that neroli oil can also be diffused to lower anxiety and pain. (2)
Anxiety and anxiety attacks (panic attacks) can be subdued with the anxiolytic neroli oil. A study has shown that inhaling the aroma of neroli can not only lower anxiety but pain as well.
3. Romance Boosting Oil
With depression and anxiety comes a plethora of sexual disorders or dysfunctions. Some of the sexual disorders that are rampant in today’s world are erectile dysfunction, loss of libido, frigidity and impotence. There may be several underlying causes of sexual dysfunction, however early stage of the dysfunctions can be treated with neroli essential oil.
Neroli oil is a stimulant that improves the blood flow in the body. Ample blood flow is needed for renewed interest in one’s sex life. Diffusing the oil of neroli rejuvenates the mind and body, and awakens one’s carnal desires.
4. Infection Protector
Neroli essential oil has antiseptic properties that prevent the sepsis on the wounds. Doctors apply anti-tetanus injections on the wounds, but in case doctors are not nearby and you have access to neroli oil then the diluted oil can be applied on and near the burns, cuts, bruises and wounds to prevent sepsis and other infections.
If the wounds are large then visit a doctor after controlling the bleeding and infection at home. A study by Dr. Sagar N. Ande and Dr. Ravindra L. Bakal established the antiseptic and antibacterial properties of neroli essential oil. (3)
A study has proven the antiseptic and antibacterial properties of neroli essential oil which makes it an oil of choice for treating cuts, bruises and burns as it can prevent infection.
5. Fights Bacteria
Neroli oil is effective against bacteria. It eliminates them form the body and prevents infections and accumulation of toxins. It is applied on the face to remove biofilms and thus prevent acne outbreaks. It is applied on the stomach to promote digestion and prevent food poisoning due to bacterial infections. The chemical composition and antimicrobial properties of the essential oil of neroli were analyzed in a study in 2012. (4)
Based on a study done in 2012 the chemical composition of neroli oil were established. It has shown that neroli has compounds with antibacterial properties.
6. Oil To Control Seizures
The oil has antispasmodic properties due to bioactive constituents in it including linalool, limonene, linalyl acetate and alpha terpineol. These compounds in the oil reduce convulsions and seizures in the body, stomach and muscles.
A study published in the National Product Communications in 2014 aimed to find the truth behind using neroli oil as a natural anti-seizure and anticonvulsant agent. The study found that the biologically active constituents of the oil gave it its anticonvulsant properties and hence the plant and its oil are used in the management of seizure. (5)
A study published in 2014 has shown that neroli oil has anticonvulsant properties. It can hence be used to calm upset stomach and can be applied on muscles to soothe them
7. Good Winter Oil
Why is neroli a good oil for the winter season? Well, it keeps you warm. It should be topically applied or diffused during the cold nights to give warmth to the body. Furthermore, it protects the body from colds and coughs. It does not allow mucous to get accumulated thus ensuring good sleep.
8. Oil for Women’s Health
Neroli oil is useful in reducing menopausal symptoms. Some of the symptoms associated with menopause that neroli oil can take care of with ease are elevated blood pressure levels, stress and anxiety and loss of libido. A randomized controlled trial published in the Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine on June 2014 investigated the effects of inhaling the aroma of Citrus aurantium L. var. amara oil on menopausal symptoms including estrogen in postmenopausal women.
The trial involved 63 healthy postmenopausal women who were divided into two groups. The report suggested that neroli oil can be used to reduce stress and treat the health of postmenopausal women. It also found that neroli oil improved functioning of the endocrine system. (6)
9. Neroli Oil for Skincare
A few studies have shown that neroli oil was more effective in treating blemishes and scar on the face and body than most lotions or anti-spot creams available in the market. The oil is used as an ingredient in some skincare products. It is also use to diminish after pregnancy stretch marks.
10. Removes Gas from Stomach
The essential oil of neroli has carminative properties, which means it efficiently removes the gas accumulation in the stomach and intestines. When the gas is removed from the stomach the normal functioning of the stomach resumes. This includes better digestion, hunger and lesser discomfort. It also lowers the blood pressure level. The effect of a body massage with neroli oil was analyzed in a 2013 study. It was found that sleep quality improved and hypertension decreased with the massage. Its anticonvulsant activity also lowers spasms in the stomach. (7)
11. Oil to Lower Blood Pressure
Neroli oil has antidepressant properties. It functions by reducing the stress causing hormone called salivary cortisol in prehypertensive and hypertensive subjects. By lowering the cortisol level in the body neroli oil also lowers the blood pressure level. The oil has high limonene content which has a positive impact on the autonomic nervous system. It thus regulates the pulse rate as well.
12. Oil for Sleeping
The oil of neroli has a sedative effect which is useful as a complementary therapy for insomnia and stress induced sleeplessness. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine in 2014 published a study that shows that essential oils improved the sleep quality of patients. (8)
13. Good Anti-inflammatory Effect
The anti-inflammatory properties of this oil make it a useful tool in skin acre, hair care and joint care. It reduces swelling, pain, redness and inflammation. It also improved the immune response of the body to inflammation. The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry on October 2017 published a study that looked into the anti-inflammatory properties of neroli oil. It concluded that the anti-inflammatory properties of neroli oil were due to the presence of the compounds linalool, limonene and alpha terpineol. (9)
14. Popular Aroma
The aroma of neroli is rich and can drive away foul smells. It is hence used in deodorants, perfumes, and in room fresheners. A drop of the oil is added to clothes to keep it smelling fresh.
15. Disinfects the House and Surroundings
Neroli oil has insecticidal and bactericidal properties. Hence it is used as a cleaning agent that can eliminate bacteria, microbes and fungus from the house and clothes.
16. Tonic for the Body
The oils that act as tonic for the body boost the functioning of different systems of the body, including digestive, neurological and circulatory. Neroli oil improves the functions of these systems and keeps the body healthy.
12 Uses of Neroli Essential Oil
Neroli essential oil benefits and uses are aplenty. Neroli oil is an essential oil that also helps maintain the right hormonal level in the body. Neroli blends well with other citrus oils to enhance its properties.
Neroli Essential Oil For Skin care
Neroli is frequently referred to as cytophylactic, meaning it possesses qualities that enhance cell rejuvenation and boost the skin's elasticity. This makes it an ideal solution for individuals with skin issues such as acne, irritation, oiliness, sensitivity, environmental damage, or mature skin. Additionally, it effectively minimizes the appearance of stretch marks and scars.
1. Removes Pathogen Accumulation
A few studies have shown that using neroli essential oil is effective against pathogens including Staphylococcus aureus and kills bacteria. The accumulation of these pathogens on the skin can cause infections and acne breakouts. Applying the oil topically removes the pathogens from the skin.
2. Oil With Anti-ageing Properties
Neroli oil has anti-ageing properties as it has antioxidants that negate the free radicals that speed up the ageing process. Because of the antimicrobial and antioxidant qualities, neroli is used in many anti-ageing cosmetic products. Dilute the essential oil with carrier oil (including coconut oil, jojoba oil or olive oil) and massage on the skin till the oil is completely absorbed. The oil also has cytophylactic properties that help in cell regeneration.
3. Acne Fighting Essential Oil
Neroli oil has antibacterial properties. This has been established through various studies. The oil is used in cosmetic products to fight acne. However, the oil can be used as a standalone tool to fight acne. Mix the oil with any vegetable oil and apply on the face. One can alternate cosmetic product and neroli oil for acne treatment. Neroli oil with a carrier can also maintain the elasticity of skin.
4. Soothes Irritated Skin
The anti-inflammatory properties of the essential oil are useful when applied on skin that is irritated, red, swollen or filled with rashes. Just take a small amount of the oil and mix it with carrier oil and apply on the irritated surface. It also maintains the oil balance in the skin.
5. Natural Makeup Aid
Neroli oil has a sweet rich aroma with good skincare properties. It is applied on the face to remove makeup without annoying the skin and it is used as a toner for makeup. It is typically used with a cotton ball. The oil with a carrier oil nicely removes the makeup.
Neroli oil For Women’s Health
6. Oil For Easing Menstruation
Neroli oil has soothing properties and it does away with pain. Both these properties are useful in easing the pain, cramps and discomfort due to menstruation.
7. Oil for Menopausal Women
Two drops of neroli essential oil is diffused in the air to ease the anxiety, stress and negative emotions that many women experience after reaching menopause.
Other Uses of Neroli Oil
8. Neroli Oil for Lowering Blood Pressure
Sometimes stress and anxiety elevates the blood pressure levels in the body. Diffusing neroli oil and inhaling neroli aroma lowers the blood pressure. Massage aromatherapy with the oil also lowers the blood pressure. However, avoid the oil if you are on blood pressure medications.
9. Prevents Diseases Caused By Free Radicals
The number of free radicals in the body increases due to unhealthy habits and environmental factors. Nipping it in the bud can help prevent several ailments that free radicals cause. Some of these ailments are dementia, asthma, diabetes, joint inflammation and cancer. Neroli oil has antioxidants that neutralize the free radicals in the body and thus prevent the degenerative diseases.
10. Treats Varicose Vein Discomfort
Varicose veins are enlarged veins that appear on the feet and legs. Diluting neroli oil and applying it along the length of the veins can subdue the pain it causes when one stands up or walks.
11. Oil diffused For Treating Stress and Depression
5 drops of neroli essential oil is added to an aroma diffuser and its aroma is allowed to engulf a room. Then the aroma is deeply inhaled for about 20 minutes before taking a 5 minutes break. The aroma is inhaled again for 10 minutes. Doing so reduces stress and lowers the risk of depression.
12. Essential Oil for Cold
Clods, coughs and flu can be pestering at times. Dilute neroli oil with almond oil and apply on the nose, throat, head and back of neck to get relief. It stops the hardening of mucus thus ensuring good sleep.
Recipes With Neroli Essential Oil
Diffuser Blend For Happy Mind
- 3 drops of neroli essential oil
- 3 drops of Chamomile essential oil
- 3 drops of lavender essential oil
Citrus Essential Oils Explosion
- 3 drops of neroli essential oil
- 3 drops of lemon essential oil
- 3 drops of orange essential oil
- 2 drops of grapefruit essential oil
- 2 drops of bergamot essential oil
- 5 drops of neroli essential oil
- 3 drops of sandalwood essential oil
- 2 drops of ylang ylang essential oil
- 2 drops of juniper essential oil
Safety And Precautions While Using Neroli Essential Oil
Essential oils are great for self-care routines. However, we should also take care and follow caution when using them to keep ourselves and loved ones safe from its side effects. Generally essential oils are safe, but a few guidelines must be followed to avoid any adverse effects. Also, the oils are different, made up of different compounds. Some people may be allergic to certain compounds while others may be allergic to others. Concentrated oil must be bought after careful deliberation. Here are a few guidelines to keep in mind.
- Read the label and instructions to make sure you’re using the oil correctly.
- While buying essential oils be wary of the terms fragrance oil, perfume oil and natural identical oil.
- The term pure essential oil can be widely seen on the bottles. These maybe made from substandard sources.
- Ensure that you are not allergic to any ingredients or compounds in the oil.
- Make sure to dilute the essential oil in a carrier oil for safe application. Never topically apply the oil on the skin without dilution.
- Do not add too much of the oil in the diffuser.
- Avoid using essential oils of sensitive areas like the eyes and nose.
- Don’t apply it on broken skin either unless it’s mentioned on the bottle or label.
- Keep it out of reach of kids and fur kids.
- Do not diffuse the oil near kids and pets. Consult a doctor before doing so.
- Some oils may make you sensitive to sun damage, so be sure to load up on SPF.
- Check the label to see if the oil is photo-toxic.
- This oil may not be suitable for pregnant women or for women who are breastfeeding.
- The oil may cause embryotoxicity; consult a doctor before use.
- Always use the oil on a small patch of skin before topical application. Never apply undiluted oil on skin.
- If aromatherapy is performed directly from the bottle, make sure that the oil does not touch the skin.
- The common unwanted effects caused by essential oils up on topical application are rashes, redness and swelling.
- If you show signs of irritation, stop use and consult a health professional.
- Some essential oils cannot be used by people with kidney problems, whereas some essential oils cannot be used by those with blood disorders. It is always advisable to consult a doctor about your essential oil needs and predisposition for diseases.
- Ingestion of essential oils has resulted in gastrointestinal distress for many people. It is advised to restrain from internal consumption of essential oils. Always consult a doctor before consuming essential oils.
- When essential oils come in contact with sensitive body parts including eyes, nose, ears and genitals side effects including burning sensation, itching and discomfort have been reported. Even though these oils are healthy, avoid sensitive areas.
- Most essential oils lower elevated blood pressure levels and protect the heart. But, this property may prove detrimental if a person is already taking medication to lower blood pressure levels. Taking essential oils in conjunction with blood pressure medications can cause irregular heartbeat, dizziness and fainting.
Is neroli the same as bergamot?
Neroli essential oil and bergamot essential oils are extracted from two different plants - Citrus aurantium var. amara and Citrus bergamia respectively. Both oils are citrus based oils with different aromatic notes. The compounds and their chemical composition are also different. Both these oils are popular oils with certain therapeutic benefits.
What essential oil is similar to neroli?
The essential oils similar to neroli essential oil and the ones that can be used as a substitute for neroli oil are ylang ylang or valerian essential oils.
Is neroli oil relaxing?
Neroli essential oil when used in aromatherapy has a relaxing effect. It has been proven in studies that the aroma of neroli oil can bring down blood pressure and heartbeat rates. Also it has a slight sedative effect that calms the senses.
- S. Agatonovic-Kustrin, E. Kustrin, V. Gegechkori & D. W. Morton. (2020). Anxiolytic Terpenoids and Aromatherapy for Anxiety and Depression. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-030-42667-5_11.
- Cristiano Scandurra , Selene Mezzalira , Sara Cutillo , Rosanna Zapparella , Giancarlo Statti , Nelson Mauro Maldonato , Mariavittoria Locci , Vincenzo Bochicchio. (2022). The Effectiveness of Neroli Essential Oil in Relieving Anxiety and Perceived Pain in Women during Labor: A Randomized Controlled Trial. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35206980/.
- Sagar N. Ande, Ravindra L. Bakal. (2022). Potential herbal essential oils: Are they super natural skin protector? http://innpharmacotherapy.com/VolumeArticles/FullTextPDF/10235_04_IPP_10-AJ-2022-19.pdf.
- A Haj Ammar , J Bouajila, A Lebrihi, F Mathieu, M Romdhane, F Zagrouba. (2012). Chemical composition and in vitro antimicrobial and antioxidant activities of Citrus aurantium l. flowers essential oil (Neroli oil). https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24163946/.
- Taravat Azanchi, Hamed Shafaroodi, Jinous Asgarpanah. (2014). Anticonvulsant activity of Citrus aurantium blossom essential oil (neroli): involvment of the GABAergic system. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25532295/.
- Seo Yeon Choi, Purum Kang, Hui Su Lee, and Geun Hee Seol. (2014). Effects of Inhalation of Essential Oil of Citrus aurantium L. var. amara on Menopausal Symptoms, Stress, and Estrogen in Postmenopausal Women: A Randomized Controlled Trial. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4082953/.
- Myeong-Sook Ju, Sahng Lee, Ikyul Bae, Myung-Haeng Hur , Kayeon Seong, and Myeong Soo Lee. (2013). Effects of Aroma Massage on Home Blood Pressure, Ambulatory Blood Pressure, and Sleep Quality in Middle-Aged Women with Hypertension. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3570933/.
- Susanna Stea, Alina Beraudi, and Dalila De Pasquale. (2014). Essential Oils for Complementary Treatment of Surgical Patients: State of the Art. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3953654/.
- Chun-Yan Shen , Jian-Guo Jiang , Wei Zhu , Qin Ou-Yang. (2017). Anti-inflammatory Effect of Essential Oil from Citrus aurantium L. var. amara Engl. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28906110/.
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