"Patchouli brings with it the sense of the sacredness in life," writes aromatherapist Valerie Ann Worwood in Aromatherapy For the Soul. "It is also a fragrance of action."
Worwood says the emotional benefits of patchouli essential oil (Pogostemon cablin) are to encourage farsightedness, rapport, invigoration, reasonableness, lucidity, astuteness, and stimulation.
Patchouli is one of the few essential oils that improves with age. A properly aged oil is more desirable than a fresh one. Aging causes the oil to become less harsh and adds a sweet top note. As the oil ages, it turns from light yellow to a deep amber, and the aroma becomes smoother and richer.
Plant family: Lamiaceae/Labiatae
Production: Steam distilled from the leaves (usually dried) of the plant, which is an herb native to Southeast Asia.
Aroma: Musky, herbaceous, earthy — not everyone likes the scent.
Perfume/Aromatic note: Base
Is patchouli safe to use during pregnancy? Baby Belly lists the oil as pregnancy friendly, as do Mom Prepares and Mommypotamus. I couldn't find an explicit answer in my reference books.
Is patchouli essential oil safe for children? Some sources suggest not using the oil with children under age 2, but Essential Oil Safety does not give this caution.
Fun fact: Patchouli is a natural fixative and used extensively in the perfume industry.
Source: Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Ed.
Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art: Patchouli keeps moths and mold out of woolen items. The essential oil helps reduce appetite, water retention, exhaustion, and inflammation and works against fungus. Use the oil for dandruff, acne, eczema, skin growths, and cracked, sensitive, dry, or mature skin. The oil also helps relieve nervousness, anxiety, oversensitivity, depression, and insomnia, plus acts as an aphrodisiac.
The Heart of Aromatherapy: Use patchouli for natural perfumes and deodorants, daily skin care, rejuvenating damaged skin, soothing skin irritation, inflammation, bug bites and stings, repelling insects, meditating and contemplation, and feeling deeply relaxed and peaceful.
The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Use patchouli for cuts, sores, abscesses, mites, fungus, and problematic skin conditions. The essential oil can also help repel insects and relieve bug bites and stings. The oil may help relieve PMS, moodiness, depression, and irritability.
The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (updated edition): Use patchouli in skin care for acne, athlete's foot, cracked and chapped skin, oily skin, dermatitis, weeping eczema, sores, wounds, and wrinkles. Use the oil in hair care, especially for dandruff and oily hair. The essential oil is also useful for relieving nervous exhaustion and stress-related complaints.
Aromatherapy For Healing the Spirit: In Traditional Chinese Medicine patchouli is warm in nature yet helps reduce inflammation. The oil is useful for restoring deficient Qi-energy in the Spleen-pancreas. "Psychologically, patchouli oil works through harmonizing the Element Earth and the Intellect (Yi), grounding and stabilizing the mind when overthinking and worry develop."
Aromatica: A Clinical Guide to Essential Oil Therapeutics, Volume I: Psychologically, patchouli stabilizes the mind and promotes realism and emotional security. The oil also promotes cognitive flexibility and sensory integration. Physically, the essential oil is a relaxant and restorative. In Traditional Chinese Medicine the essential function of patchouli is to nourish the Yin, resolve damp, and calm the Shen. Suggested blends:
Subtle Aromatherapy: Patchouli has a strengthening and grounding effect on the first chakra while also affecting the second chakra as an aphrodisiac.
The Essential Guide to Aromatherapy and Vibrational Healing: Spiritually, patchouli helps you raise your consciousness and be more aware and present in the moment. Mentally, the essential oil brings focus and promotes action. Emotionally, the oil is uplifting.
Aromatherapy and Subtle Energy Techniques: Patchouli grounds and stabilizes, calms, and promotes creativity and sensuality. The oil is especially useful for the first chakra and promotes a strong connection with the physical body.
For an uplifting blend that you can use as a perfume or in a diffuser, mix 3 drops patchouli and 1 drop rosemary.
Note: Patchouli is a thick oil and my clog some types of diffusers.
Diffuse this blend or add it to 1 tablespoon of carrier oil for a massage:
Source: Astrological Aromatherapy
Another Diffuser Blend
Source: Aromaweb Diffuser Recipes
Makes four baths.
Add the salt to a wide-mouth jar that holds four ounces (120 ml). Stir the essential oils into the salt.
Source: Aromahead Newsletter
Woodsy Perfume Balm
Makes four 1-ounce tins of hard perfume balm
Source: Essential Living
For a quick body butter, blend the following ingredients:
Apply to skin as desired.
Source: Rocky Mountain Oils
Combine the following ingredients:
Apply a little of the scrub to your face and wash off.
Source: Dr. Axe 101 Ways to Use Essential Oils
Try this blend for a good night's sleep:
Source: 10 Recipes with Patchouli Essential Oil — Suzanne Banks