The relative ease of it's cultivation,
and it's high oil yield keeps the price of true Patchouli essential
oils relatively low. It is important to note however, Patchouli
is one of the few essential oils that improve with age (others
being Frankincense, Cedarwood, Sandalwood and Vetiver), and that
a properly aged Patchouli oil is much more desirable than a fresh
one. Over time, the oil looses a harshness that many find distasteful,
and adds a sweet top note. As it ages, the oil turns from light
yellow to a deep amber, with the aroma becoming smoother and
Principal constituents of the
oil include: Patchoulol (25-35%), Alpha-Bulnesene (12-20%), Alpha-Guaiene
+ Seychellene (15-25%), and Alpha-Patchoulene (5-9%).
Perhaps first due to it's power
as a moth repellent, the aroma of Patchouli was pervasive in
cloth and clothing exported from India in the 19th century. The
scent became an indicator of true 'Oriental' fabric, so much
so that English and French garment makers were obliged to scent
their imitation products with Patchouli to ensure their acceptance
in the domestic marketplace. Beyond its use for preventing holes
from being eaten in one's cloting, Patchouli oil has been used
for centuries in traditional medicine in Malaysia, China and
Japan. Primarily indicated for skin conditions, Patchouli may
be of benefit in cases of dermatitis, eczema, acne, dry chapped
skin, and other irritating conditions, along with dandruff and
oily scalp conditions. As a cell rejuvenator, it may help in
healing wounds and reducing the appearance of scars. It is considered
an excellent remedy for insect and snake bites, and has been
used as a fumigant and rubbing oil to prevent the spread of fevers
and to strengthen the immune system.
Aromatherapy and Perfumery Uses
of Patchouli Oil
Patchouli oil is considered
an excellent base note and fixative in perfumery, being a component
in many famous perfumes. As a fixative, it slows the evaporation
of other, more volatile oils so that their aroma may be released
over a longer period of time. A little patchouli can be used
in natural perfume blends, adding that special deep and earthy
aroma. It mixes well with many essential oils, with almost all
common oils being mentioned across a variety of sources - these
include Vetiver, Rosemary, Sandalwood, Frankincense, Bergamot,
Cedarwood, Myrrh, Jasmine, Rose, Citrus oils, Clary Sage, Lemongrass,
Geranium and Ginger.
In Aromatherapy, Patchouli is
considered a great balancer, relaxing yet stimulating, particularly
relevant for conditions of weak immunity where overwork and anxiety
have left the individual in a susceptible state. It is said to
bring the three principal forces at work within the body - the
Creative at the navel, the Heart center, and transcendental wisdom
a the crown - into harmony.
Patchouli oil may also relieve
the strain of those with excessive mental activity who may feel
'out of touch' with their body and sensuality. It has been considered
a relaxing aphrodisiac, and can be helpful for those with impotence,
frigidity, and sexual anxiety that are products of mental anguish.
Patchouli combines this aphrodisiac effect with an antidepressant
one, uplifting the mind with it's sweet, warm, spicy scent.
As if this were not enough,
Patchouli is thought to be a bringer of prosperity and abundance.
Perhaps by allowing one to open to these possibilities energetically,
the oil is used in ceremonies and prayers by those in need of
financial or other type of infusion in their lives. One may simply
close their eyes, imagine the abundance they need, and inhale
the oil's aroma for a few seconds.
For a few simple blends, try:
3 parts Patchouli and 1 part
Rosemary Cineol. This is a wonderfully uplifting blend combining
the deep earthiness of Patchouli with the invigorating aroma
of Rosemary. This can certainly be worn as a perfume, or used
in a diffuser.
When the going gets tedious,
try brightening with 3 parts Coriander, 2 parts Patchouli and
1 part Bergamot. This may uplift the spirits and remind one of
the joy to be found in life.
For the sensually insecure,
try 1 part Geranium, 1 part Patchouli and 1 part Bergamot. A
beautiful yet simple blend for getting comfortable in one's own
It may take a little education,
but many who claim to have a dislike for Patchouli may truly
enjoy it when finally getting to sample a properly aged or beautifully