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Copaiba Essential Oil: Uses for Skin and Pain Relief

Overview Of Copaiba Essential Oil

Native to the Amazon River Basin, this ancient healer and Brazilian folk medicine has tons of benefits. With its healing and soothing properties, copaiba essential oil deserves more popularity than it gets. What is copaiba oil used for?

Copaiba essential oil is used for skincare, hair care, pain relief, mood boosting and many other health related issues. Read on to find out why it should be a staple in your essential oil collection.

What Is Copaiba Essential Oil?

Copaiba essential oil is made from copaiba trees, scientifically known as Copaifera officinalis. More than 70 species of copaiba trees have been discovered in South and Central America. These trees are gentle giants that can grow up to 25 to 40 feet, and live for up to 400 years!

(The other geographical locations that the plant grows in are the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Sri Lanka Trinidad and Tobago, and Sierra Leone.)

Copaiba trees naturally produce gum resin. This gum resin is collected from the tree by making a hole in the trunk and inserting a pip to allow the gum resin to flow out. This sticky organic substance is then steam distilled and made into what is known as copaiba essential oil. The method of steam distillation is what captures the “essence” of the gum resin and collects all of its benefits in a single bottle.

The trunks of the tree have been tapped for its oleoresin for several years. Its oleoresin is called balsam of copaiba. Since ancient times, its balsam has been used for medicinal and industrial reasons. Artisans also use this essential oil for artisanal purposes. Its medicinal activities include bactericidal properties against common pathogens from the demography.

Another tree from the same family of plants is called Copaifera langsdorffii. It is said that Copaifera officinalis has better antibacterial properties than Copaifera langsdorffii.

Copaiba resin has been used as Brazilian folk medicine since the 16th century to boost overall wellbeing. In the present day, copaiba essential oil is widely used in cosmetic products like skincare items, soaps and cleansers. With its many healing benefits, earthy and woodsy copaiba oil is a natural wonder that supercharges health.

Copaiba oil resin or Copaifera reticulata Ducke has shown anti-inflammatory benefits in researches.

Name Copaiba Essential Oil
Botanical Name Copaifera officinalis
Native to Bolivia, Brazil, and Venezuela
Properties Antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, analgesic, anti-parasitic, sedative, neuroprotective
Main ingredients Caryophyllene, elemene, beta-bisabolen, bergamotene, copaene
Aroma Sweet, woody and resinous
Blends well with Frankincense, ylang ylang, cedarwood and Roman chamomile essential oils
Category Resinous
Substitute Oregano, tea tree or lavender essential oil

The balsam is collected from the trunk of Copaifera trees and converted into oil. Let’s learn more about copaiba, the resin of the copaiba tree, and its benefits and uses.

Copaiba Essential Oil Benefits

With so many benefits linked to this ancient healer, it's hard to pick just one. Here’s a quick run-through of some of the health benefits you can enjoy with copaiba essential oil.

1. It’s Anti-inflammatory

Inflammation is associated with a wide variety of diseases and conditions. Beta-caryophyllene, a major constituent of copaiba oil, lessens inflammation and oxidative stress.

2. It Heals Infections

Copaiba oil has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties which inhibit bacterial and fungal growth, making it a great natural remedy to help treat all sorts of infections.

3. It Relieves Pain

Goodbye pains and strains! Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, this oil helps soothe muscle aches and arthritic pains by lessening swelling in affected areas.

4. It Soothes Leishmaniasis

Leishmaniasis is a condition caused by parasites and spread through the bite of sandflies which can cause skin lesions and ulcers. Natural copaiba oil is able to reduce the size of skin lesions through topical application.

Copaiba oleoresin has shown to improve cutaneous wound healing.

5. It Clears Skin and Reduces Acne

Copaiba doesn’t just heal, it beautifies! This oil helps clarify the skin and reduces the appearance of pimples and blemishes due to its antimicrobial and antifungal properties.

Must Read: 25 Essential Oils for Acne

6. Resolve Babies’ Teething Problems

The oil of copaiba has mild anti-inflammatory that soothes the gum and relieves pain. A small amount of the oil can be applied on the baby’s jaw line to when the baby gets uncomfortable during teething.


A study conducted at the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil in 2007 reported that copaiba oil was effective in the treatment of algesic conditions because of its peripheral and central antinociceptive effect. (1)

7. It Helps with Sleep

Copaiba essential oil (and copaiba oleoresin) has a sedative effect and it affects the central nervous system and reduces stress. Both these qualities of the oil control sleep disturbances and help get uninterrupted sleep. It also clears the respiratory tract for smooth breathing while sleeping.


A comparative study aimed at the pharmacological evaluation of copaiba oil was done at Universidade Feevale, Instituto de Ciências da Saúde, Brazil, in 2011. The study done on rats found that the oil had anti-inflammatory properties and had a positive effect on the central nervous system. (2)

8. Oil For Muscles

Athletes and people who frequent the gym are the ones that need oil (or any product) to soothe their aching muscles and joints. Copaiba oil can soothe the muscles and relieve soreness. Dilute copaiba is applied on the muscles to calm inflammatory muscle problems.

You can also add two drops to water for wound healing. The oil has antinociceptive activity which drives out harmful toxins from the body. It is also not a cytotoxic. Hence massaging on the muscles have multiple benefits.

Must Read: Best Essential Oils for Muscle Pain

9. Get Over Arachnophobia

Spiders are scary creatures. And they are found in abundance in the tropical parts of Latin America. Copaiba is used in traditional medicines to treat spider bites (both copaiba balsam and copaiba oil are used to cure insect bites). It is a powerful antioxidant and can be applied directly on the bite. So, the next time you are out camping make sure to pack copaiba essential oil for all of its benefits.


Research backs this property of copaiba oil. In a study published in 2019 it was found that copaiba oil had an effect in the healing process after getting bitten by the L. intermedia or Brazilian brown spider. (3)

10. Open Your Heart Chakra

Diffusing copaiba oil along with proper meditation techniques balances the heart chakra which reduces stress and chaos, brings positive change in relationships. This is a chakra that boosts our connections with others.

Must Read: Best Essential Oils for Heart Chakra

11. Copaiba Oil Suppresses Inflammatory Cytokines in Splenocytes

This property has been shown in a research conducted in 2014 on mouse models. Here, the mice induced with experimental autoimmune encephalitis showed good immune response. This is beneficial for autoimmune diseases including multiple sclerosis.

12. General Wellbeing Oil

Beta or β-caryophyllene (BCP) is highest in Copaiba essential oil and is potent as an irregular cannabinoid and sesquiterpene. (Copaiba does not contain psychoactive cannabinoids like in hemps.) BCP selectively binds to CB2 receptors which are in the endocannabinoid system (ECS). ECS is a signaling and regulating system made up of enzymes, receptor sites, and endocannabinoids.

The cannabinoid receptors are present in the body including the main organs CB2 receptors are mostly found within the immune system and hence important for its functioning. When ingested, the BCP binds to these receptors and stimulates immune and inflammatory responses. It also acts on multiple signaling pathways hence promoting organ functions; thus, it supports general wellbeing.

13. Essential Oil For Oral Hygiene

Copaiba oil promotes oral heath (after all it could resolve the teething in babies). The oil has to be used regularly with mouthwashes or toothpaste. It can prevent or treat mouth sores, cavities, gum infections or swelling.

A drop of copaiba before bedtime will prevent the conditions affecting the mouth and gums. It also gives the mouth a sweet aroma.

14. Essential Oil For Pets

The fur buddies are averse to the aroma of most essential oils, but not copaiba oil for pets.

Copaiba Essential Oil Uses

Depending on how you use it, this earthy and woodsy oil can greatly improve your well-being and uplift your days. Take a look below!

Copaiba Essential Oil For Skin

Treats Acne

Copaiba oil kills bacteria, making it a must-have for those with acne-prone skin. When applied to the skin with a carrier oil, it can heal breakouts as well as prevent future flare-ups

Soothes Eczema, Psoriasis & Dry Skin

Eczema causes dry, itchy, and scaly skin and can appear anywhere on the face and body. Thankfully, copaiba essential oil has antifungal properties that can keep eczema away. If you have psoriasis, copaiba’s anti-inflammatory properties can help lessen redness and irritation too.

Copaiba Essential Oil for Pain Relief

Soothes Headaches & Migraines

Alleviate the pain and discomfort of headaches and migraines by diffusing copaiba oil. Its nostalgic, woodsy aroma brings about relaxation too.

Relieves Muscle Aches

Copaiba oil helps to lessen sore muscles and joints, making it a great addition to massage oils. Add a few drops to your favorite carrier oil and massage onto your skin to reduce pain and ease muscle tension.

Lessens Arthritic Pain

Arthritis is the swelling and tenderness of one or more joints that cause discomfort and pain. Used topically, copaiba oil may lessen arthritis pain so you can move freely again.

Treat Acne Effectively

The copaiba oil resin is applied with a carrier oil (like coconut oil, almond oil or jojoba oil) on acne to treat the skin problem. It is also applied to prevent frequent acne breakouts. It is used for skin for many reasons including as an anti-inflammatory agent.

In a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial published in 2012 in the Alternative Medicine Review, it was found that copaiba oil significantly decreased the acne on the face. It proved the healing, anti-inflammatory effects and antiseptic activities of the oil. (4)

Useful in Aromatherapy

Using an aroma diffuser, the aroma of copaiba can be diffused in the surrounding. In a meditative pose inhale the aroma to relieve stress and anxiety. It also aids in controlling wayward thoughts when performing yoga.

Oil for Pets

Pets are not found of essential oils because of its strong aroma. There are very few essential oils that do not pose any risks to the two common pets, cats and dogs. Copaiba oil is one such oil that is useful for pets. The mild aroma of the oil calms the pets and de-stresses them.

How To Use Copaiba Essential Oil

There are many ways to harness the benefits of copaiba essential oil. Whether it’s from direct inhalation from the bottle, or incorporating it with a carrier oil to make it friendlier on the skin, here are some ways to use this oil in your daily life.

Copaiba Essential Oil For The Skin

Many people choose to use essential oil topically, applying it to the skin and enjoying its great benefits. However, essential oils are very concentrated extracts that can be too potent for the skin. This is why it is always recommended to use the dilution method which will minimize skin sensitivity and increase safety.

So if you want to use copaiba essential oil on your face and body to soothe inflammation and pain, start off by diluting it with a carrier oil. A good, skin-safe ratio would be 1 drop of copaiba essential oil with 1 tablespoon of carrier oil such as jojoba or argan. You can also add a couple drops of this oil to a gentle nourishing moisturizer or lotion before slathering it onto your face and body.

Copaiba Essential Oil In An Aroma Diffuser

While you can inhale the scent of copaiba oil straight from the bottle, diffusers can be helpful in dispersing essential oils into the air for round-the-clock inhalation. Here are some tips when using an aroma diffuser.

  1. Set it up according to the manufacturer's instructions
  2. Place it at least 2-feet above the ground to get the full benefits
  3. Fill the tank with filtered water to reduce mineral buildup and extend the life of your diffuser
  4. Don’t hold back! Most people add about 3 to 15 drops per 100ml of water
  5. Experiment and mix and match essential oils to create a unique scent
  6. Take time to play around with the diffuser settings to find a spray setting that suits you

Copaiba Essential Oil For Great Mornings

Mixing essential oils together and using them in a diffuser is a great way to craft a special scent just for yourself. Not to mention, you get to enjoy all the benefits in one go! Try adding 3 drops of Coffee Essential Oil and 3 drops of Copaiba Essential Oil to a diffuser.

Coffee oil smells exactly like how you imagine, like walking into a cafe with the smell of fresh beans grinding. Its invigorating smell will get you ready to start your day. Meanwhile, Copaiba oil eases feelings of nervousness, sadness, and worry. This morning blend is sure to calm your mind and prepare it for a productive day.

Copaiba Essential Oil Recipe

Copaiba Oil Blend for Sleep


  • 3 drops of copaiba oil
  • 2 drops of Juniper berry oil
  • 2 drops of Clary sage oil
  • 1 drop of tea tree oil


  • Mix all the oils in an aroma diffuser
  • Start the diffuser half an hour to one hour before bed time

Safety With Copaiba Essential Oil

Essential oils are great for self-care routines. However, we should also take care and caution when using them to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe! Here are a few guidelines to keep in mind.

  1. Read the label and instructions to make sure you’re using the oil correctly. Consult a healthcare provider if possible.
  2. Make sure to dilute the essential oil in a carrier oil for safe application.
  3. Avoid using essential oils for sensitive areas like the eyes and nose.
  4. Don’t apply it on broken skin unless it’s mentioned on the bottle or label.
  5. Keep it out of reach of kids and furkids.
  6. If you show signs of irritation such as itchiness, redness, or swelling- stop use and consult a health professional.
  7. Do not ingest the oil without consultation with health care provider. Due precaution must be taken.

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