About Vetiver Essential Oil
Vetiver essential oil (Vetiveria zizanoides), with its exotic and complex aroma, is often over-looked in favor of the more familiar floral or herbal essential oils, but some people will find it to be one of their favorites once they try it. I would describe the fragrance as smooth and deep, like velvet, but edgy too, with a primal, earthy quality reminiscent of the forest floor in autumn. Few people have a “neutral” opinion of vetiver; most love it or hate it, depending, perhaps, on their level of comfort with wild things and their own wild natures.
Note: All information on this page, above and below, is provided for educational interest only. Nothing here is intended to make claims for our product “Vetiver Essential Oil”. Your experiences with an essential oil may differ from any one else’s experiences. No information provided here is intended to be used for the diagnosis or treatment of any physical or mental illness. Please pay attention to the safety information provided below in order to insure that your experiences with this product are good ones.
Our Vetiver Essential Oil from Indonesia is distilled from the rootlets of a tropical grass that is known to stabilize the land on which it grows. In aromatherapy, it has been said that its aroma reminds us of our own roots and helps to ground and comfort us in a deep way.
“A scent that disturbs me and delights me. It smells like ripe pears, vetiver, a bit of violet and something else – something spicy, almost biting and exotic.”
Vetiver essential oil has been said by some aromatherapists to deepen and intensify the effects of complimentary essential oils with which it is blended. A blend of Vetiver and Rose Otto, for example, is claimed to be deeply comforting and nurturing, while some people find that just a touch of vetiver mixed with sandalwood stills and calms the mind and is an ideal aid for meditation. Vetiver and Jasmine Enfleurage blend together in a way that I find deeply sensual, earthy and erotic. In perfumery, a small amount of vetiver can add an exotic and unexpectedly pleasing note when blended with most floral and woody essential oils – try it!
How to Use Vetiver Essential Oil
Vetiver essential oil is appropriate for both inhalation and topical use. IFRA recommends a maximum concentration of 1.5% for topical use. This oil can be used on its own and many people do enjoy it’s exotic aroma in that way but, in my opinion, it’s in blends with other essential oils that it really shines. I use it frequently in blends to be diffused or applied topically when I want a calming, grounding, nurturing effect. When using vetiver for blending, start with a single drop and add more one drop at a time as it has a powerful aromatic effect.
Vetiver essential oil is one of my favorite essential oils to use for massage; just make sure you use a maximum concentration of 1.5% diluted in some kind of vegetable oil. I like to use this oil (alone or in blends) for diffusing or for use in an aromatherapy locket. I also like to add it to a relaxing bath at the end of a stressful day; mix a drop or 2 of Vetiver, or 4 or 5 drops of an essential oil blend containing Vetiver, into a tablespoon of whole milk or cream and add to a warm bath.
Vetiver Herb and Essential Oil in Traditional Medicines
In the folk medicine of India, herbal preparations of vetiver have been widely used to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. and have also been applied in cases of stings and bites, burns, rheumatism, and many other complaints. The essential oil of vetiver is known in India and Sri Lanka as “the oil of tranquility”.
In Chinese Medicine, the energetic nature of vetiver essential oil is said to be Cool and Moist. Its main elemental correspondence is with Earth and its actions have been said to include the following:
- Tonify the Yin (Blend with Lavender and Rose)
- Clear heat (empty heat) (Blend with Lavender)
- Settles the Heart and Calms the Shen (Blend with Lavender and Spikenard)
- Relieves spasms (blend with Marjoram and Roman Chamomile)
This oil has been said by some practitioners of Chinese Medicine to clear heat from both the mind and body, and simultaneously calm and uplift the spirit. It has been used by aromatherapists to calm and ground an over-active mind and to balance and restore the mind that has been exhausted by stress, over-work, or especially, trauma.
Research Links for Vetiver Essential Oil
Follow general safety guidelines for use of essential oils, as noted in the link below. IFRA recommends a maximum concentration of 1.5% for topical use of Vetiver Essential Oil.
For convenience, a 1.5% dilution is achieved by adding 14 drops of Vetiver essential oil to 1 ounce of vegetable oil (such as grapeseed oil or almond oil). For using smaller amounts, 2 drops of Vetiver essential oil in a teaspoon of vegetable oil will give a concentration that is within recommended limits.