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Guide To Black Spruce Essential Oil and Its Benefits and Uses

"Black spruce essential oil can stir up 'stuck energy'," according to The Heart of Aromatherapy. "This means it's a good oil to reach for when you're feeling sluggish, and want to feel more healthy and vibrant."

The focus of this profile is black spruce (Picea mariana). However, spruce comes in other varieties, including Norway spruce (Picea abies), white spruce (Picea glauca), red spruce (Picea rubens), blue spruce (Picea pungens), and hemlock spruce (Tsuga canadensis).

A Guide To Black Spruce Essential Oil and Its Benefits and Uses In Aromatherapy

Basic Black Spruce Facts

Plant family: Pinaceae

Production: Steam distilled from twigs and needles of the black spruce tree.

Aroma: Fresh, earthy, woody

Perfume/Aromatic note: Top

Is spruce safe to use during pregnancy? No.

Is black spruce essential oil safe for children? Yes, but do not use on babies under the age of six months.

Cautions: Skin sensitization can occur if the essential oil becomes oxidized.

Main components:

  • bornyl acetate 36.8%
  • beta-Pinene 14.2%
  • alpha-Pinene 13.7%
  • camphene 8.1%
  • (+)-limonene 5.2%

Source: Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Edition

Black Spruce Aromatherapy Benefits

Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art: The simulating scent is helpful to relieve muscle spasms, adrenal gland insufficiency, and fatigue.

The Heart of Aromatherapy: Black spruce can help support the respiratory system, clear mucous and congestion, calm inflammation, and soothe sore muscles and muscle spasms. The book also offers this caution: If you have asthma or another respiratory condition, smell black spruce from the bottle cap. If you feel any tightness or constriction in your chest, do not use this essential ol.

The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils
: Use black spruce in the shower, especially on the lower back, as an adrenal tonic.

The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Use black spruce to help relieve sinus congestion, arthritis, gout, stiff joints, and muscle strain.

Aromatica: A Clinical Guie to Essential Oil Therapeutics, Volume I: Psychologically, black spruce promotes power, courage, endurance, motivation, and self-confidence. Physically, the essential oil restores hypotonic/weak conditions and decongests congestive/damp conditions.  In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the essential function of black spruce is to tonify the Qi and Yang and strengthen the Shen.

Aromatherapy and Subtle Energy Techniques: Black spruce clears, cleanses, rejuvenates, supports intuition, and encourages new insights. The oil is especially useful to support the sixth chakra and development of intuition.

Black Spruce Essential Oil Blends and Uses

For chronic menstrual cramps, PMS, and menopausal symptoms, Aromatica suggests blending black spruce with either niaouli essential oil or vetiver essential oil or a combination of clary sage and geranium essential oils.

For sore muscles and stiff joints, make a massage oil with 6 drops black spruce oil in 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) massage oil or lotion.

To make a holiday diffuser blend, use 3 drops black spruce and 3 drops clove essential oil in an aromatherapy diffuser.

Congestion Relief Blend

Make a stock blend in a 5-milliliter bottle:

  • 25 drops black spruce essential oil
  • 25 drops Eucalyptus radiata essential oi
  • 12 drops frankincense essential oil

Ways to use:

  • Make a personal inhaler by adding 25 drops of the blend to a blank inhaler.
  • Use in diffuser, following the instruction for much to put in a specific diffuser.
  • Use a steam inhalation made by adding 3 to 5 drops of the blend to a bowl of hot water.

Adapted from Aromatic Studies.

Wintertime Steam Diffuser Blend

For a warm, steamy aromatic mist that's good for dealing with colds, flu, and respiratory issues:

  • 5 drops black spruce essential oil
  • 5 drops balsam fir essential oil
  • 5 drops grapefruit essential oil
  • Water in small pan
  1. Heat some water to a low simmer. Then turn off the heat.
  2. Add the oils and let them diffuse with the steam from the heated water.

Source: Essential Living

For respiratory conditions, Aromatica suggests blending black spruce with scotch pine essential oil.

Fall/Winter Shower Spritzer Blend

Spray the following liberally onto the shower floor and into the corners before turning on the water.

  • 5 drops black spruce essential oil
  • 5 drops drops fir (Abies alba) essential oil
  • 5 drops juniper berry essential oil
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable glycerin
  • 2 tablespoons Eucalyptus radiata hydrosol
  • 2 tablespoons distilled or purified water
  1. In a 2-ounce glass spray bottle, mix the essential oils with the glycerin. Shake well.
  2. Add the hydrosol and water. Shake to mix. Shake before each use.

Source: Shanti Dechen CCAP, CAI, LMT. "Autumn is Here: The Metal Element." NAHA Aromatherapy Journal, Autumn 2016.3, p. 19.

Spruce Bath Salts

Combine the following ingredients.

  • 4 drops black spruce
  • 1 drop spearmint essential oil
  • 2 drops pine essential oil
  • 1 tablespoon jojoba oil
  • 1/2 cup Epsom salt

Add the salts to a bath and soak for 15–30 minutes.

Source: Eden's Garden

Adrenal Support Blend

Use the following blend as a body oil/lotion after your morning shower:

  • 100 drops black spruce essential oil
  • 40 drops atlas cedarwood (Cedrus atlantica) essential oil
  • 20 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 1/2 cup carrier oil or unscented lotion

Blend the ingredients in a dark glass container and store away from heat and moisture.

Source: Advanced Aromatherapy: The Science of Essential Oil Therapy

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Photo Credit: By Arthur Chapman on Flickr CC BY 2.0