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Guide To Ravintsara Essential Oil Benefits and Uses

Ravintsara essential oil (Cinnamomum camphora ct 1,8 cineole) is steam distilled from the leaves of the tree that grows in Madagascar. Due to the similar names, ravintsara is often confused with the completely different ravensara essential oil (Ravensara aromatica).

Aromatherapy supplies with the words A Guide To Ravintsara Essential Oil Benefits and Uses and photo of ravintsara leaves.

More confusion arises because the Cinnamomum camphora tree has three chemotypes that produce different essential oils:

  • Yu-sho (cineole chemotype) produces ravintsara oil (also sometimes called ho leaf oil)
  • Hon-sho (camphor chemotype) produces camphor oil
  • Ho-sho (linalool chemotype) produces ho wood oil, ho leaf oil (different from ravintsara), and shiu oil

Sources: Robert Tisserand and The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, Third Edition, Vol. 1

Basic Ravintsara Facts

Plant family: Lauraceae

Production: Steam distilled from the leaves of the Cinnamomum camphora ct 1,8 cineole tree.

Aroma: Earthy, woody, camphorous

Perfume/Aromatic note: Top.

Is ravintsara safe to use during pregnancy? Consult a professional.

Is ravintsara essential oil safe for children? Do not use near the face of young children.

Main components:

  • 1,8-cineole      56.7–63.7%
  • sabinene         11.4–14%
  • alpha-terpineol  6.9–8.3%
  • alpha-pinene     3.7–4.6%

Safety: Recommended maximum dermal limit of 11%.

Source: Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Edition

Ravintsara Aromatherapy Benefits

The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Uses for ravintsara essential oil include helping relieve bronchial congestion, colds, sinusitis, rhinitis, excess mucus, and general fatigue.

The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (updated edition): Ravintsara supports the respiratory system, helping relieve coughs, colds, flu, laryngitis, and other respiratory problems. The oil may also help get rid of warts and athlete's foot, soothe aching muscles and joints, and relieve nervous debility.

Jeanne Rose: Ravintsara has many of the same uses (like relief of respiratory ailments, especially colds and flu) as eucalyptus. Use ravintsara to make an invigorating massage oil that helps clear the mind and relieve nervous fatigue and depressed feelings.

The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils: Ravintsara supports the immune system, calms the nerves, and helps relieve flu symptoms.

Aromatica: A Clinical Guide to Essential Oil Therapeutics, Volume I
: Psychologically, ravintsara stimulates the mind and promotes alertness while also promoting motivation and self-confidence. Physically, the essential oil restores and warms hypotonic/weak and asthenic/cold conditions. In Traditional Chinese Medicine the essential function of the oil is to tonify the Qi, raise the Yang, and strengthen the Shen.

The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, Third Edition, Vol. 1 suggests the following essential oil blends with ravintsara:

  • To lessen fatigue and promote alertness: basil, clove, ginger, lemon, peppermint, pine, or rosemary.
  • To relieve arthritis pain: black pepper, kunzea, ginger, peppermint, pine, or rosemary.
  • To help relieve nervous tension and stress-related conditions: bergamot, clary sage, geranium, lavender, neroli, sweet orange, or rosemary.
  • To reduce cold symptoms: atlas cedarwood, eucalyptus, ginger, niaouli, peppermint, pine, tea tree, or thyme.

Ravintsara Essential Oil Uses and Blends

Diffuse ravintsara to support breathing exercises.

Air Clearing Diffuser Blend

  • 2 drops ravintsara
  • 2 drops palmarosa essential oil
  • 2 drops tea tree essential oil

Therapeutic Bath Salt for Cold and Flu

Use these bath salts to relieve the aches, pains, and discomfort of colds, cough, and flu.

  • 8 ounces (1 cup) natural (unbleached) bath salts
  • 20 drops ravintsara essential oil
  • 10 drops gingergrass essential oil
  • 10 drops orange essential oil
  • One 8-ounce PET plastic jar
  • Stirring spoon
  1. Pour bath salts into the empty jar.
  2. Add essential oils to the salt. Use the stirring spoon to mix vigorously for at least one minute.

To use: Add about two tablespoons to your bathwater. Soak and enjoy.

Source: Essential Living

Calming Bath

  • 3 drops ravintsara
  • 1 drop vetiver essential oil
  • 1 tablespoon jojoba oil

Blend oils. Stir the blend into a warm/hot bath. Soak for 20 to 30 minutes. If desired, also add one cup sea salt to the bath.

Source: Rocky Mountain Oils

Adult Chest Rub

  • 6 drops ravintsara
  • 6 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 drops black pepper essential oil
  • 3 drops frankincense essential oil
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) carrier oil

Blend oils in a small glass container. Apply a few drops to the chest every 3 to 4 hours as needed to open up the chest and improve breathing. Store unused blend in the refrigerator.

Source: Plant Therapy

Sore Muscle Massage Oil

  • 8 drops ravintsara
  • 8 drops orange essential oil
  • 8 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 16 drops Roman chamomile essential oil
  • 1/2 cup carrier oil

Adapted from Natural Healing With Essential Oils from AromaSense


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Photo Credit: KENPEI, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons