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A Guide To Hyssop Essential Oil and Its Benefits and Uses

Guide To Hyssop Essential Oil and Its Benefits and Uses

"Hyssop is a quintessential cleanser, enabling a clarity of spirit and recognition of the divine beneficent power in the universe," writes aromatherapist Valerie Ann Worwood in Aromatherapy For the Soul.

She also says the emotional benefits of hyssop essential oil (Hyssopus officinalis) are to encourage awakening, acceptance, fulfillment, encouragement, direction, balance, and harmony.

Hyssopus officinalis is high in pinocamphone, which might be toxic in large doses. For this reason, use this essential oil only in small amounts.

A gentler and safer chemotype of hyssop is available — Hyssopus officinalis var. decumbens — that doesn't contain much pinocamphone. Know which type you are buying.

Basic Hyssop Facts

Plant family: Lamiaceae/Labiatae

Production: Steam distilled from leaves and flowering tops   

Aroma: Green, sweet, herby, spicy

Perfume/Aromatic note: Middle

Is hyssop safe to use during pregnancy? No. Also, do not use while breastfeeding.

Is hyssop essential oil safe for children? Some sources say not to use with children under age 2, while other sources specify a general "not for use on children" warning.

Cautions: Do not use if you have epilepsy, according to most sources. May irritate sensitive skin.

Main components:

Hyssopus officinalis (pinocamphone chemotype)

pinocamphone      31.2-41.7%
isopinocamphone  30.9-39.2%
beta-pinene          4.0-8.8%

Hyssopus officinalis var. decumbens (linalool chemotype)

linalool        48.0-51.7%
1,8-cineole  12.3-14.9%

Source: Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Ed.

Benefits Of Hyssop Essential Oil

Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art: Hyssop supports the respiratory and digestive systems. The essential oil also eases grief, fear, oversensitivity, and hysteria, while improving mental clarity.

Aromatherapy For Healing the Spirit: In Traditional Chinese Medicine hyssop is hot and stimulating and best used in moderation. This essential oil strengthens the lungs and the defensive Qi and may help improve poor vitality and breathlessness. Hyssop also strengthens the spleen-pancreas and warms the digestion, meaning the oil may help relieve appetite loss, slow digestion, and abdominal bloating.

The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Hyssop may help relieve coughs, colds, flu, bruising, arthritis, muscle aches and pains, and digestive problems.

Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils: Hyssop may be beneficial for relieving bruises, respiratory problems, colds, flu, indigestion, and anxiety.

Aromatherapy Bible: "Hyssop has a special affinity for the respiratory system... It is good in compresses over bruises, and has an invigorating effect on the mind."

Hyssop Oil Uses

Diffuser blend for respiratory/lung support:

  • 10 drops eucalyptus essential oil (globulus or radiata)
  • 10 drops rosemary essential oil
  • 10 drops hyssop
  • 7 drops lavender essential oil

Use a few drops of the blend in a essential oil diffuser.

Massage oil for nervous exhaustion:

  • 7 drops lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops grapefruit essential oil
  • 5 drops hyssop
  • 2 tablespoons carrier oil

Source: Floracopeia

For bruises: Use a cold compress with a few drops of hyssop or add the essential oil to a carrier oil and rub gently over bruise several times a day.

For digestion: Massage your abdomen with diluted hyssop. Most sources recommend using the herb, rather than the essential oil, to make a tea for digestion.

Buy Hyssop

I recommend hyssop essential oil from Young Living.

Photo Credit: H. Zell [CC BY-SA 3.0 ], from Wikimedia Commons

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