"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 only small amounts of this essential oil.
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.
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? Do not use with children under age 2, according to Essential Oil Safety.
Cautions: Do not use if you have epilepsy, according to most sources. May irritate sensitive skin.
Hyssopus officinalis (pinocamphone chemotype)
Hyssopus officinalis var. decumbens (linalool chemotype)
Source: Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Ed.
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.
The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Uses of hyssop essential oil include helping relieve coughs, colds, flu, bruising, arthritis, muscle aches and pains, and digestive problems.
The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (updated edition): Hyssop may be beneficial for relieving bruises, respiratory problems, colds, flu, indigestion, anxiety, fatigue, and nervous tension.
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."
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.
Aromatica: A Clinical Guide to Essential Oil Therapeutics, Volume 2: Psychologically, hyssop promotes emotional renewal, stability, and insight and promotes mental stability. Physically, the essential oil restores hypotonic/weak and decongests damp/congestive conditions. In Traditional Chinese Medicine the essential function of the oil is to tonify the Qi, resolve phlegm-damp, and strengthen the Shen.
Subtle Aromatherapy: Use hyssop for cleansing space.
Aromatherapy and Subtle Energy Techniques: Hyssop clears negative energy and protects.
The Essential Guide to Aromatherapy and Vibrational Healing: Hyssop cleanses. Spiritually, the essential oil helps you rise above challenging situations to see the higher purpose of life experiences. You can also use the oil to help release negative thinking. Emotionally, the oil creates a sense of calm and relieves anxiety.
Diffuser blend for respiratory/lung support:
Use a few drops of the blend in an essential oil diffuser.
Massage oil for nervous exhaustion:
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.