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Health Benefits of Patchouli Essential Oil : Uses, How to Use, Side Effects, DIY (2022)

A plant that has long been used as an aromatic superstar, its scent is unmistakable to all aromatherapy enthusiasts. Patchouli essential oil is known to help relax the mind, soothe irritated skin and even strengthen hair. Read on to understand why this essential oil is an absolute self-care must-have.

What Is Patchouli Essential Oil?

An essential oil that is commonly found in soaps, perfumes and cosmetics, patchouli essential oil exudes an earthy, woodsy and herbaceous scent. It may not be dominant in many fragrances, but it's a scent that adds depth to other fragrances; similar to what salt does with food!

Originating from Asia, Pogostemon Cablin has long been associated with luxury since ancient times. Patchouli arrived in the Middle East along the silk trading routes and landed in Europe, thanks to Napoleon who liked its exotic and intoxicating scent. Today, most Patchoulol is still grown in the Southeast Asian region because of its stable year-round climate and nutritious soil. Evidence of use of essential oils (patchouli) has been found in ancient Egypt as well.

Patchouli Essential Oil is often extracted through the steam distillation of its leaves and stems. This extraction method is the most effective way to capture the “essence” of the plant and help its benefits shine through.

The leaves of the patchouli plant are dried and the process of steam distillation gives the concentrated oil. Patchouli essential oil’s active chemical is patchoulol, also known as patchouli alcohol, a sesquiterpene alcohol.

This constituent is often used for its health-based properties. The essential oil’s active chemical components, other than patchoulol, are seychellene, α-guaiene and α-patchoulene. Its healing benefits can be attributed to these compounds. The scent of patchouli is musky. The scent of patchouli oil became quite popular during the hippie era.

What Is Patchouli Oil Fragrance?

Sometimes misspelled or misconstrued as petrulli oil smell Patchouli oil has a distinctive and earthy fragrance characterized by its sweet, musky, and slightly spicy notes. Patchouli alcohol, also known as Patchoulol, is a natural organic compound found in patchouli essential oil.

It contributes to the oil's distinct aroma and is a common ingredient in perfumery. Patchouli alcohol has a woody, earthy scent and plays a crucial role in giving patchouli oil its characteristic fragrance.


patchouli plant

History of Patchouli Oil

Patchouli or Pogostemon cablin is a green herby bush that belongs to the mint family and has an herby or herbaceous aroma. It was native to the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu. The name patchouli also has Tamil origins –when translated from Tamil it means green leaf.

From South India it made its way to the Middle East through the ancient trade route known as Silk Road or Route. It is believed that Napoleon introduced Europe to Patchouli.

But, perhaps the biggest impact of Patchouli and its aroma was felt during the 1960s and 1970s at the peak of the hippie culture. Patchouli Essential Oil is comprised of the following compounds - Patchoulol, alpha- and beta-Patchoulene, gamma-Guaiene, Caryophyllene, and Pogostol

Cultivating And Harvesting Quality Patchouli Oil

The patchouli plant is grown in tropical regions with hot and humid climates. It is grown in the vicinity of other trees including coconut and pine. It is planted from cuttings of another grown plant after placing it in water. The plant needs copious amounts of sunlight to be nutrient abundant.

The plant matures in about seven mounts. Its seed can be used for further harvesting of the plant. The plant can be harvested several times in a year. The leaves of the plant are dried and sent for steam distillation to extract its oil. There are two varieties of patchouli oils based on their distillation process. These are patchouli oil dark and patchouli oil light.


Patchouli Essential Oil

Botanical Name

Pogostemon cablin

Native to

Southeast Asia

Main ingredients

Patchoulol, guaiene, seychellene, alpha guaiane, copaene, patchouli alcohol, norpatchoulenol, pogostol


Earthy and spicy

Blends well with

Lavender, Clary sage, lemongrass, geranium, elemi, myrrh, pine, bergamot, frankincense and sandalwood essential oils


Earthy or Woody


Rosemary, tea tree or vetiver essential oil

Now, let’s look at the uses and benefits of patchouli.

Patchouli Oil Benefits

A versatile plant with countless benefits, singling out just one that stands out would be an insurmountable task. So here’s a quick guide to better understand this powerful plant’s potent benefits.


Calms The Mind For Inner Peace

Patchouli essential oil exudes an earthy and woodsy scent that helps ease stressed-out and restless minds. Diffusing it during sessions of meditation is perfect for boosting focus and calming the mind for deeper spirituality and clarity.


Nourishing For The Skin

Nourishing for the skin, patchouli essential oil is a star ingredient of many face care products. It is known to give the skin a vibrant, glowing and smooth complexion. It is used in face wash to avoid skin infections.


Boosts Rest Quality

Just as it is great for grounding restless minds, patchouli is also greatly renowned for its ability to improve rest time. Its soothing and grounding scent helps to naturally sedate the mind, easing restless minds.

Must Read: Best Essential Oil Blends To Treat Insomnia


Fades Acne Scars

Imbued with rapid skin-healing properties, this essential oil helps minimize scars and marks caused by acne and wounds. This is because patchouli oil has skin-rejuvenating properties that naturally penetrate scar tissue to reduce its appearance and restore natural skin color.


Skin application

Patchouli oil has skin-healthy properties. When lab mice were treated with patchouli oil and exposed to sunlight, it was found that the collagen content was more which reduced the risks of wrinkles.


As an insecticide

Patchouli oil is used as an ingredient in insect repellants. Patchouli is considered to have one of the potent insect repellant characteristics.


Repels Insects

With its insect repellant properties, patchouli oil is capable of driving away bugs, insects and mosquitoes.


Promotes Oral Health

The health-related characteristics of patchouli essential oil are used to maintain oral health and hygiene. It is also used to get rid of bad breath.


Boosts Libido

The aroma and the properties of patchouli essential oil, when used in aromatherapy oils blend, relaxes the nerves and promotes blood flow. Relaxation and better blood flow, together, boost the libido.


Reduces negativity

Aromatherapy with patchouli oil regulates the hormone serotonin and helps in the secretion of dopamine by stimulating the limbic system. These hormones are able to bring negativity under control.

The aroma of patchouli essential oil is commonly used in serene ambience as the oil has a grounding effect.

Must Refer: Top Essential Oils for Depression



The aroma of patchouli oil relaxes the nerves and promotes blood flow. It treats sexual disorders as it acts as an aphrodisiac essential oil.

Benefits Of Patchouli Essential Oil For Skin

Patchouli essential oil is an all-in-all asset for skincare. Its natural antiseptic, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties aids in soothing irritated skin and reducing redness in and around acne. This makes particularly useful even for addressing skin conditions like eczema.

Diluted Patchouli oil for skin is also renowned for its ability to moisturize and rejuvenate the skin, leaving it soft and supple to the touch. Its earthy aroma of this patchouli extract adds a pleasant note to skincare products and enhances daily routine. Whether used in a moisturizer, serum, or diluted with a carrier oil for topical application, patchouli essential oil for skin can be a valuable addition to skincare regimen for a healthier and more radiant complexion.

Patchouli Essential Oil Hair Benefits

Patchouli essential oil has several benefits that can be utilized in hair care. It has natural antiseptic, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties that make it effective for maintaining a healthy scalp and smooth hair. By promoting scalp health, it can help reduce dandruff and flakiness. A clean scalp is the foundation for hair growth and hair health.

The patchouli extract oil's earthy aroma adds a pleasant fragrance of hair products, making it useful ingredient in natural shampoos and conditioners. Benefits of patchouli essential oil for hair strengthens the hair follicles and reduces hair loss. Its versatile and aromatic properties make it a valuable addition to regular hair care routine, nurturing the hair.

Patchouli Oil Uses

Wanna get the most out of its calming and relaxing scent as well as skin-nourishing benefits? Here is how you can harness the benefits of patchouli oil and add it to your daily life routine.

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1. It Helps Improve Mind Wellness

Patchouli essential oil exudes a scent that naturally creates a soothing atmosphere. Diffusing it around living spaces can help you relax and unwind from a hectic day. Essential oils help calm down and thus offers you mental clarity and promotes mind wellness. (3)

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2. It Reduces Skin Conditions

A remedy for easing rash-prone skin and dry skin, patchouli essential oil has properties that help calm inflamed and irritated skin. Simply add essential oils to a carrier oil to experience its skin-soothing effects. It is applied with avocado oil on the scalp to preventhair and scalp issues.(4)

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3. It Keeps Insects Away

Patchouli was used in ancient times (and today!) as an insect repellent. It is able to ward off mosquitoes and bed bugs, as well as many other pests. Spray this around your bed or furniture for peace of mind at home.

4. Goodbye to Cold and Cough

Cold and cough due to allergies, seasonal changes or illness can be treated by using the scented oil on the face – nose, throat and temples.(5

5. Better Sexual Power

This oil is a stimulant and stimulates the production of the hormones estrogen and testosterone. Patchouli oil can be added with lavender oil and diffused in rooms of couples for intimacy.

6. Moisturizes Skin

Few drops of patchouli oil are massaged on the skin to moisturize it and keep the skin amply hydrated. The oil also boosts the circulation of blood and keeps the skin healthy and young.

How To Use Patchouli Oil

There are a great many ways to experience the benefits of patchouli essential oil. Some people do it by directly inhaling it from the bottle; others incorporate it with carrier oils to make it skin- and hair-friendly. Here’s how you can incorporate this grounding and earthy oil into your everyday life.

Inhaling Patchouli Oil

Patchouli Essential Oil For Uplifting Mood
Patchouli Oil is a mood-lifting fragrance. When inhaled directly from the bottle, its grounding and emotionally balancing scent helps the brain release happy hormones like serotonin and dopamine and promotes relaxation.

Breathing in this essential oil daily could make you more satisfied with your daily life, so you’ll always look at things as a glass half full.

Patchouli Oil In An Aroma Diffuser

We find that many people inhale essential oils directly from the bottle. Though it is absolutely okay to do so, diffusing it into the air is a more effective way to help calm the atmosphere a. Here’s how you can use patchouli essential oil with a diffuser.

  1. Set up essential oils according to the manufacturer's instructions
  2. Place essential oils at least 2-feet above the ground to get the full benefits
  3. Fill the tank with filtered water to reduce mineral buildup and to prolong the life of your diffuser
  4. Don’t skimp on the essential oils! Remember, adding more oil makes the scent last longer. Most people add about 3 to 15 drops per 100ml of water
  5. Experiment and mix & match essential oils to tailor your own unique blend of scent
  6. Take time to explore your own diffuser and find a spray setting that suits your fancy
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Patchouli Oil For Hair

Patchouli is perfect for balancing oil production on the scalp, making it perfect for treating oily scalps that can result in limp, lifeless hair. Its moisturizing and cleansing properties also help hydrate dry hair as well as reduce dandruff. Here’s a simple way to make yourself a scalp scrub with the lock-loving patchouli essential oil.


    • 2 Drops of Patchouli Essential Oil
    • 1 Tsp. Baking Soda
    • 1 Pump of Sulfate-Free Shampoo

Simply combine the ingredients together in a small bowl and blend well. Get into the shower and apply the mixture to your hair. Be sure to massage it gently into the scalp and rinse well before following up with your regular conditioner.

Side effects and who’s most at risk

Patchouli essential oil generally does not pose any risks when topically applied. However, to be on the safer side, it is advised to perform a small patch test with diluted oil to check for any rashes or itchiness. Patchouli oil is risky for those on blood thinning medications or those with any sort of bleeding disorders.

Safety When Using Patchouli Oil

Essential oils are great for self-care routines. However, we should also take care and caution when using them to keep ourselves and 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.
  2. Make sure to dilute the essential oils in a carrier oil for safe application.
  3. Avoid using essential oils on sensitive areas like the eyes and nose.
  4. Don’t apply it on broken skin either unless it’s mentioned on the bottle or label.
  5. Keep it out of reach of kids and furkids.
  6. Some oils may make you sensitive to sun damage, so be sure to load up on SPF.
  7. If you show signs of irritation, stop use and consult a health professional.

Recommended Patchouli Essential Oil Products

Want to add patchouli oil to your list of essential oils and make every day just a little bit better? Click the links below to add our 100% pure and natural patchouli oils to your shopping bag.

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