Black Pepper Essential Oil

Information contributed by Samantha

Piper nigrum

Family: Piperaceae
Synonyms: Piper, pepper
General Description: A perennial woody vine up to 5 metres high with heart shaped leaves and small white flowers. The berries turn from red to black as they mature – black pepper is the dried fully grown unripe fruit.
Herbal/Folk Tradition: Both black and white pepper have been used in the East for over 4000 years for medicinal and culinary purposes. In Chinese medicine, white pepper is used to treat malaria, cholera, dysentery, diarrhea, stomach ache and other digestive problems. In Greece, it is used for intermittent fever and to fortify the stomach. The mendicant monks of India, who covered considerable distances daily on foot, would swallow 7-9 grains of pepper a day; this would give them remarkable endurance.
Actions: Analgesic, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antitoxic, aperitif, aphrodisiac, bactericidal, carminative, diaphoretic, digestive, diuretic, febrifuge, rubefacient, stimulant (nervous, circulatory, digestive), stomachic.
Extraction: Essential oil by steam distillation from the black peppercorns, dried and crushed.
Characteristics: A water, white to pale olive, liquid with a fresh dry-woody, warm spicy scent.
Blends well with: Bergamot, frankincense, sandalwood, lavender, rosemary, grapefruit, ylang ylang and marjoram.
Safety Data: Non-toxic, non-sensitising, irritant in high concentration due to rubefacient properties. Use in moderation only.
Aromatherapy/home use: This warming oil can be used to great effect to help circulation and bruising and specifically to help with muscle tone, aching limbs and rheumatoid arthritis. It further helps to promote digestion, the colon as well as the kidneys.
Burners and vapourisers: In vapour therapy, black pepper oil can be used to help add warmth to chills and colds and to create an atmosphere of ‘getting things done’.
Blended massage oil or in the bath: Black pepper oil can be used in blended massage oil, or diluted in a bath, to assist with circulation, bruises, rheumatoid arthritis and muscular aches and pains.
Lotions and creams: As a constituent in a blended cream is can be used for tired aching limbs, sore muscles, rheumatoid arthritis, stimulating the appetite and to help sort out bowel problems. In small quantities it can be used to reduce high temperatures. It increases circulation to the skin and is therefore helpful in restoring proper functioning of the skin.
Metaphysical/Magickal Influences: DIRECTION – The warmth of Black Pepper assists in loosening blockages that may be holding you back. It brings warmth and confidence to yourself and helps you follow your direction in life and prosper. Black Pepper reduces fear and motivates change and can also serve as protection from negative energy. It helps to move energy from one chakra to the next. Mental alertness, physical energy, protection and courage.
Note: Middle
Chakra: Solar Plexus
Colour Vibration: Yellow
Affinity with crystal: Bloodstone
Planet: Mars
Element: Fire


*Protection Oil*

Wear for protection against all kinds of attacks. Also anoint windows, doors and other parts of the house to guard it.

5 drops Petitgrain
5 drops Black Pepper


Aperitif: A mild laxative
Carminative: a sedative
Diaphoretic: An agent which causes sweating
Febrifuge: combats fever
Rubefacient: A substance which causes redness of the skin, possibly irritation
Stomachic: digestive aid and tonic; improving appetite


The Complete Book of Incense, Oils & Brews by Scott Cunningham
Magical Aromatherapy by Scott Cunningham
The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless
Aromatherapy Insight Cards and Book for Intuitive Aromatherapy by Jennifer Jefferies and Karen Osborn


Frankincense Essential Oil

Information contributed by Amethyst

Mind & spirit: Frankincense slows down breathing and produces feelings of calm. This tends to bring about an elevating and soothing effect of the mind. Ideally used for meditation, it has been discovered that burning frankincense produces a psycho-active substance, trahydrocannobinole, which expands consciousness. Its comforting and refreshing action is helpful for anxious and obsessional states linked to the past.
Body: Like most other oils extracted from resins, frankincense is effective for respiratory catarrhal discharge and respiratory congestion. Used in inhalations, it may be helpful for asthma sufferers, as it eases shortness of breath and increases the amplitude of the breath. Its astringent properties may relieve uterine haemorrhages as well as heavy periods and generally acts as a tonic to the uterus.

Skin & hair: Its cytophylactic properties make it an ideal oil for mature, wrinkled skin in need of a lift. Its astringent properties may also help balance oily skin conditions.
Botanical name: Boswellia carteri.
Family: Burseraceae.
Synonyms: Olibanum.
Place of Origin: The tree originates from the Middle East.
Description: A small shrub with abundant pinnate leaves and white or pale pink flowers. There are 3 grades of resin.
Characteristics: A warm, woody, sweet balsamic, spicy fragrance with a hint of lemon.
Part of Plant used: Resin
Method of extraction: Steam distillation
History: Frankincense has been used since ancient times in religious ceremonies and is still used today. It was very highly valued by many early cultures.
Chemical constituents: A typical chemical composition of frankincense is reported as follows: a-pinene (4.6%), camphene (1.1%), octanol (8.0%), linalool (2.5%), octyl acetate (52.0%), bornyl acetate (1.0%), incensole (2.4%), incensyl acetate (3.4%).
Blends well with: Basil, bergamot, black pepper, geranium, jasmine, lavender, lemon, myrrh, neroli, orange, patchouli, pine, rose, rosewood, sandalwood, vetiver, ylang-ylang.
Properties: Antiseptic, astringent, carminative, cicatrisant, cytophylactic, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant, sedative, tonic. uterine, vulnerary.

The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy by Salvatore Battaglia
Illustration from

Grapefruit Essential Oil

Information contributed by Amethyst


Mind & Spirit: it has an overall uplifting and reviving effect making it valuable in states of stress, depression and nervous exhaustion.
Body: it acts as a lymphatic stimulant and controls liquid processes. It is useful for treating water retention and its detoxifying and diuretic properties make it ideal for treating cellulite. It has a stimulating effect of the digestive system.
Skin & Hair: helpful in treating acne, congested and oily skin.

Botanical name: Citrus paradisi
Family: Rutaceae
Synonyms: C. racemosa, C.maxima var. racemosa.
Place of origin: native to tropical Asia & West Indies. Cultivated in California, Israel & Australia.
Other species: C.paradisi is a recent hybrid of C.maxima & C.sinesis.
Description: A cultivated tree, with glossy leaves & large yellow fruits.
Characteristics: A fresh, sweet and citrusy aroma.
Part used: Fruit rind
Method of extraction: Cold pressed.
Note: Top
Quality: Yang
History: Grapefruit is believed to have been cultivated in the West Indies during the eighteenth century. It was known as ‘Shaddock fruit’ apparently after the sea captain who introduced the fruit to there.
Chemical constituents: A typical chemical composition of grapefruit is reported as follows: a-pinene (0.2-1.6%), sabinene (0.7%), myrcene (1.4-2.1%), limonene (86-95%), geraniol (0.1-0.2%), linalool (0.3-0.4%), citronellal (0.14%), decyl acetate (0.15%), neryl acetate (0.2%), terpinen-4-ol (0.08%).
Blends well with: Basil, bergamot, cedarwood, carrot seed, citronella, fennel, frankincense, juniper, geranium, ginger, lavender, lime, orange, palmarosa, rosewood, rosemary, tangerine, ylang-ylang.
Properties: Antidepressant, antiseptic, depurative, diuretic, disinfectant, stimulant, tonic.
PRECAUTIONS: Non-toxic, non-irritant, non-sensitising & non-phototoxic.

The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy by Salvatore Battaglia
Illustration from

Lavender Essential Oil

Information contributed by Amethyst

  Lavendula angustifolia
Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae)
Synonyms:  Lavendula officinalis, L. vera
Planetary associations: Mercury
Element: Air
Zodiac associations:  Virgo
Magickal classifications: Fertility Herbe … Herbe of Consecration … Herbe of Love … Magickal Herbe … Religious Herbe … Visionary Herbe
Invocatory: Cernunnos, Hecate, Medea, Saturn, Serpent Goddesses
Part of plant used: Fresh flowering tops.
Method of extraction: Steam distillation.
Place of origin: Indigenous to the Mediterranean region, now cultivated mainly in France, Spain, England and Australia.
Other species:  There are many varieties of lavender; Lavendula angustifolia is divided into two
subspecies – L. fragrans and L. stoechas.  Cotton lavender (Santolina chamaecyparissus) and sea lavender (Statice caroliniana) belong to different botanical families.  Lavandin (Lavandula x intermedia) is a hybrid plant developed by crossing true lavender with spike lavender.
Description: An evergreen woody shrub, up to 1 metre tall, with pale green, narrow linear leaves and violet-blue flowers.  The whole plant is highly aromatic.
Characteristics: Floral, herbaceous, sweet scent with balsamic woody undertone.
History: Lavender has been used since ancient times as much for its perfume as for its medicinal properties.  Romans added lavender to their bath water, hence the name derived from the work ‘to
wash’, lavare.  The ancients classified lavender as a stimulant, tonic, stomachic and carminative. Herbalists regard lavender as the most useful and versatile essential oil for therapeutic purposes.
Properties: Analgesic, anticonvulsive, antidepressant, antiphlogistic, antirheumatic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antiviral, bactericide, carminative, cholagogue, cicatrisant, cordial, cytophylactic, decongestant, deodorant, diuretic, emmenagogue, hypotensive, nervine, rubifacient, sedative, sudorific, vulnerary.
Blends well with:  Bay, bergamot, German & Roman chamomile, citronella, clary sage, geranium, jasmine, lemon, mandarin, orange, palmarosa, patchouli, pine, tangerine, thyme, rosemary, rosewood, ylang-ylang.


Mind & spirit: It is well know for its nervine – sedative properties, and is useful for treating a variety of nervous and psychological disorders including depression, insomnia, migraine, nervous tension, hysteria and paralysis.  As a sedative – analgesic it is very good for headaches and migraines.  Like geranium, lavender is considered normalising, hence its considerable versatility.
Body: Without a doubt if one were to choose only a single essential oil to keep in the first aid kit, lavender would be the undisputed choice.  Of all the essential oils lavender is undoubtedly the most versatile.  Its antiseptic properties make it ideal to use for treating coughs, colds, catarrh, sinus, flu, as well as the treatment of wounds, ulcers, cystitis and catarrhal discharges.  Being a good antispasmodic it can be used for the management of conditions such as asthma.  Bronchitis also responds well to lavender used in massage and inhalations.  Lavender is helpful in the treatment of all types of pain.  Because of its low toxicity it is considered, along with German and Roman chamomile, one of the safest essential oils to use with children.
Skin and hair:  Lavender is the essential oil most commonly associated with burns and healing of the skin.  Its effectiveness in the treatment of burns has led to its use in burns units in European hospitals.  It also has antiseptic and analgesic properties which will ease the pain of a burn and prevent infections.  As it also has cytophylactic properties it will promote rapid healing and help reduce scarring. Its anti-inflammatory and soothing properties have a balancing effect on the skin.  It can also be used for the treatment of dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis, boils and acne.  It may be used in general skin care for all types of skin.  When using lavender for inflammatory conditions please use only low concentrations of less than 1%. Lavender is also useful for the treatment of sunburn and sunstroke.  It can be combined with peppermint in a 1% dilution and used as a massage oil.  Finally it can be used as an insect repellent and may be used to treat insect bites – preventing the itching and scratching.
Magickal use:  Lavender in the home brings peace, joy and healing.  Lavender is known for its ability to increase one’s clarity when viewing the world and to assist the evolution of one’s spirit through life.  It is used in a remedial fashion to alleviate stress and may be used magickally for the same purpose.  If working with ritual or magick to promote healing from a depression, Lavender is a superior choice.  Lavender (as herb or essential oil) may be used in as an ingredient or substitute for magick spells and formulas related to Mercury matters (overcoming addiction, breaking bad habits, communication, divination, eloquence, intelligence, mental powers, psychic powers, self-improvement, study, travel, and wisdom).  Be careful about substitutions for preparations that will be ingested or come in contact with the skin.  These substitutions do not apply to medical uses.  Place Lavender under your pillow while thinking of your wish. Do this just prior to retiring for the night. In the morning, if you have dreamt of anything relating to your wish, it will come true. However, if you did not dream, or if they were unconnected with your wish, it will not manifest.

Precautions: Non-irritant, non-toxic and non-sensitising.

From – The Complete Guide to

by Salvatore Battaglia

Lemon Essential Oil

Information contributed by Amethyst

Spring has sprung,
The grass has riz,
I wonder where the birdies is?

I know darn well where the birdies is, they’re hassling my dog for her food and at the moment some are sitting on my lemon tree waiting for her to finish her breakfast. Just what I need, organically grown lemons garnished with bird poop …bugger! But it’s got me thinking about the properties of the lemon, a spring fruit and its essential oil.


Botanical name: Citrus limon
Family: Rutaceae
Synonyms: C. limonum
Place of origin: A small thorny evergreen tree, native to India and now common to many countries.
Other species: There are about 47 varieties of lemon.
Description: A fresh and sharp citrus fragrance.
Characteristics: Fresh, sharp, sweet citrus smell.
Part of plant used: Peel of the fruit.
Method of extraction: Cold pressed.

History: The fruit became know in Europe in the middle ages, but it was known to the Greeks and Romans. The therapeutic value of lemons was recognised by the middle ages. Nicholas Lemery in his book on simple drugs in 1698 mentioned lemons as being digestives, as a blood cleanser, and as helping sweeten the breath after a heavy meal. Lemons reached the height of their fame when they were issued to counteract the effects of scurvy in the British Navy.

Chemical constituents: A typical chemical composition of lemon is reported as follows:
a-pinene (1.8-3.6%), camphene (0-0.1%), B-pinene (6.1-15.0%), sabinene (1.5-4.6&), myrcene (1.0-2.1%), a-terpinene (0-0.5%), linalool (0-0.9%), B-bisabolene (0.56%), limonene (62.1-74.5%), trans-a-bergamotene (0.37%), nerol (0.04%), neral (0.76%).

Blends well with: Bergamot, eucalyptus, fennel, frankincense, ginger, juniper, lavender, neroli, rose, rosemary, sandalwood and ylang-ylang.

Properties: Anti-anaemic, antimicrobial, antirheumatic, antisclerotic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, bactericidal, carminative, cicatrisant, depurative, diaphoretic, diuretic, febrifuge, haemostatic, hypotensive, insecticidal, rubifacient, tonic and vermifuge.


Mind and spirit: Refreshing and cooling when feeling hot and bothered. Research in Japan has found that lemon improves the ability to concentrate. In one study it was found to reduce typing errors by 54%, when the essential oil was vaporised in the air.

Other research into lemon essential oil found that is reduced health symptoms reported. According to Susanne Fischer-Rizzi lemon oil “hums like a bumblebee” and lifts the spirits, especially during times of mental fatigue. It has been found to be useful for stimulating and clearing the mind and aids the decision making process.

Body: Lemon oil is highly prized for its high antibacterial properties. Lemon oil is able to stimulate the action of the white blood corpuscles, the body’s own defence. Lemon oil is also haemostatic.

It improves the functioning of the digestive system, counteracts acidity in the body and makes the stomach more alkaline. Other problems arising from too much acidity in the body give rise to painful symptoms, including rheumatism, gout and arthritis. Whenever the body does not rid itself effectively of uric acid, this forms crystals which cause pain and inflammation of the joints.

Lemon oil can be used in cases of toxaemia, such as rheumatism, arthritis, gout, high blood fat and cholesterol, general obesity, cellulite and abscesses, boils and carbuncles.

Lemon has a tonic effect on the circulatory system and is useful in treating varicose veins. It is helpful in cases of high blood pressure and can be used in preventative regimes against arteriosclerosis.

Skin and hair: Being astringent it has an effective cleansing effect on greasy skin. At the same time its antiseptic properties make it useful for treating cuts and boils.

Precautions: Non-toxic, may cause dermal irritation or sensitisation reaction in some people. Phototoxic so avoid using on skin and then exposing to the sun.

From – The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy by Salvatore Battaglia

Now that I’ve mentioned my garden, I’m pondering how can I use magick in my garden. I Googled (of course) and came up with this site: It has some simple but good ideas to put into practice.

Patchouli Essential Oil

Information contributed by Samantha

Pogostemon cablin

Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae)
Synonyms: P. patchouli, patchouli, puchaput
General Description: A perennial bushy herb up to 1 metre high with a sturdy, hairy stem, large fragrant, furry leaves and white flowers tinged with purple.
Herbal/Folk Tradition: The plant is native to Malaysia and India, where it is known as puchaput. The word is derived from the Hindustan word ‘patch’ meaning ‘green’ and ‘ilai’ meaning ‘leaf.’ The oil is used in the East generally to scent linen and clothes and is believed to help prevent the spread of disease. It was placed between Indian cashmere shawls en route to Victorian England, to protect the merchandise from moths and without this signature smell of dried patchouli leaves the shawls could not be sold in England. In China, Japan and Malaysia the herb is used to treat colds, headaches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and halitosis*. In Japan and Malaysia, it is used as an antidote to poisonous snakebites.
Actions: Anti depressant, anti-inflammatory, anti-emetic*, antimicrobial, antiphlogistic*, antiseptic, antitoxic, antiviral, aphrodisiac, astringent, bactericidal, carminative*, cicatrisant*, deodorant, digestive, diuretic, febrifuge*, fungicidal, nervine*, prophylactic*, stimulant (nervous), stomachic*, tonic*.
Extraction: Patchouli essential oil is extracted from the young leaves which are dried and fermented prior to steam distillation and yields 2 – 3 %. This oil improves with age to have a fuller, more well rounded odour.
Characteristics: A dark amber or dark orange viscous* liquid with a sweet, rich, herbaceous earthy odour.
Blends well with: Vertiver, Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Geranium, Lavender, Rose, Neroli, Bergamot and Myrrh.
Safety Data: Non-toxic, non-irritant, non-sensitising.

Aromatherapy/home use: Patchouli oil has a grounding and balancing effect on the emotions and banishes lethargy. It can be used to treat frigidity, nervous exhaustion and stress related complaints. It is also said to create an amorous atmosphere. It is effective for fungal and bacterial infections and is of great help for insect bites. It can also be used as an insect repellant. With its excellent diuretic properties it is effective in fighting water retention and to break up cellulite, easing constipation and helping to reduce weight. It has a great deodorising action and helps when feeling hot and bothered; while cooling down inflammations and assisting with wound healing. On the skin, this oil is one of the most active and is a superb tissue regenerator, which helps to stimulate the growth of new skin cells. In wound healing, it not only promotes faster healing, but also helps to prevent ugly scarring when the wound heals. Patchouli oil is very effective in sorting out rough, cracked and overly dehydrated skin and is used to treat acne, eczema, dermatitis, sores, ulcers, impetigo, any fungal infections, as well as scalp disorders (such as dandruff).
Burners and vaporisers: In vapor therapy, patchouli oil can be used to fight anxiety and depression, while at the same time creating a very amorous atmosphere and acting as an insect repellent.
Blended massage oil or in the bath: As a blended massage oil or diluted in the bath (use a few drops in a tablespoon of full cream milk), patchouli oil can help to fight depression, skin and scalp complaints, fungal infections, fluid retention, help to break down cellulite and also assists with constipation, weight and dermatitis.
Neat: Patchouli oil can be applied neat with a cotton bud on insect bites.
Lotions and creams: In a lotion or cream, patchouli oil can be used for general skin care, as it has superb tissue regenerating properties, to help rejuvenate the skin and stimulate the formation of new skin cells, while fighting infections. It also speeds up healing, while preventing the wound forming ugly scars and is effective for acne, eczema, weeping sores, ulcers, slow healing wounds, scalp disorders, as well as other fungal infections, such as athlete’s foot.
Metaphysical: UNITY – Patchouli unites all levels of your resistance, allowing you to focus and bring heart and head to work together, rising above self imposed barriers and enjoying all that life presents.
Note: Base
Chakra: Sacral
Colour Vibration: Orange
Affinity with crystal: Green tourmaline (prosperity)
Planet: Saturn
Element: Earth
Magical Influences: Love/aphrodisiac, prosperity, sharpens and clarifies, grounding one’s energy, aids dreams, clairvoyance and divination.


Temple Of Luxor Blend
This exquisite temple in the ancient city of Thebes is a majestic sight. Also exquisite is the presence of love in a place. This blend is beautiful to burn when you want love flowing through a room. These essences are used to assist and enhance seduction.
2 drops Patchouli
2 drops Rose
2 drops Mandarin


Anti-emetic: an agent which reduces the incidence and severity of nausea or vomiting
Antiphlogistic: checks or counteracts inflammation
Carminative: a sedative
Cicatrisant: an agent which promotes healing by the formation of scar tissue
Febrifuge: combats fever
Halitosis: oral malodor (bad breath)
Impetigo: a contagious bacterial skin infection, usually of children, that is characterised by the eruption of superficial pustules and the formation of thick yellow crusts, commonly on the face
Nervine: strengthening and toning to the nerves and nervous system
Prophylactic: preventive of disease or infection
Stomachic: digestive aid and tonic; improving appetite
Tonic: strengthens and enlivens the whole or specific parts of the body
Viscous: relatively dense in consistency, sticky


More Aromatherapy recipes from around the world by Judy Chapman
Magical Aromatherapy by Scott Cunningham
The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless
Aromatherapy Insight Cards and Book for Intuitive Aromatherapy by Jennifer Jefferies and Karen Osborn