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Guide To Tarragon Essential Oil and Its Benefits and Uses

Tarragon essential oil (Artemisia dracunculus) is not widely used in aromatherapy because it contains large amounts of estragole (73.3–87.3%, according to Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Edition). Estragole may cause adverse effects.

Aromatherapy supplies with the words Guide To Tarragon Essential Oil Benefits and Uses and photo of a tarragon plant.

If you want to make limited use of the oil, understand the precautions. Essential Oil Safety recommends maximum dermal use of 0.1%. The oil may cause skin irritation.

Plant family: Asteraceae/Compositae

Production: Steam distilled from leaves and stems of the herb.

Aroma: Herbaceous, slightly earthy.

Perfume/Aromatic note: Middle

Is tarragon safe to use during pregnancy? No, and do not use while breastfeeding.

Is tarragon essential oil safe for children? Do not use with children under age 10, according to Revive Essential Oils.

Tarragon Aromatherapy Benefits

Advanced Aromatherapy: The Science of Essential Oil Therapy: Tarragon is one of aromatherapy's strongest spasm-reducing essential oils.

The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Tarragon may help relieve flatulence, indigestion, gastrointestinal problems, constipation, nausea, and spasms, rheumatism, and swelling.

375 Essential Oils and Hydrosols: Tarragon is indicated to help relieve gut spasms, belching, PMS, chronic fatigue, and digestive problems caused by emotional distress, and to balance the nervous system.

The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (updated edition): Tarragon may help relieve indigestion, flatulence, hiccoughs, intestinal spasm, sluggish digestion, PMS, and menstrual cramps.

Aromatica: A Clinical Guide to Essential Oil Therapeutics, Volume 2: Psychologically, tarragon promotes emotional renewal and clarity, stimulates the mind, and promotes alertness. Physically, this essential oil relaxes hypertonic/tense conditions. In Traditional Chinese Medicine the essential function of the oil is to activate the Qi, calm the Liver, and harmonize the Shen. Suggested essential oils to blend with tarragon:

  • To relieve nervous indigestion: basil
  • To relax the nervous system: lavender or basil (see the book for specifics)
  • To help relieve severe acute muscle cramps and pain: lemongrass + rosemary

The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, Third Edition, Vol. 1 suggests these blends:

  • To relieve indigestion, consider combining tarragon with essential oils such as ginger, cardamom, or peppermint in a massage oil.
  • To relieve menstrual cramps, try blending tarragon with Roman chamomile, clary sage, lavender, or sweet marjoram in a massage oil.

Aromatherapy and Subtle Energy Techniques: Tarragon supports the sixth chakra and helps us connect to our inner wisdom and acknowledge and understand intuitive information.

Mixing Essential Oils for Magic: Tarragon is a plant of abundance and comfort. Use it for dreamwork, self-exploration and growth, finding life's true purpose, and fostering peace when seeking justice.

Tarragon Essential Oil Uses and Blends

Cramp and Tense Muscle Relief

  • 20 drops tarragon
  • 20 drops cypress essential oil
  • 20 drops thyme ct. thujanol essential oil
  • 40 drops marjoram essential oil
  • 4 tablespoons carrier oil

Rub a small amount of the blend into the affected area up to five times a day.
Adapted from Advanced Aromatherapy.

Muscle Spasm Relief

  • 7 drops tarragon essential oil
  • 7 drops sweet fennel essential oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4.5 teaspoons jojoba oil
  • 1.5 teaspoons St. John’s wort oil

Combine all oils in a one-ounce glass bottle. Close bottle and shake gently. Apply oil to muscle spasms as needed.

Adapted from Jade Shutes, B.A., Dipl. AT, CHNAHA. "Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)." NAHA Aromatherapy Journal, Spring 2017.1, p. 24.

PMS Relief

This blend is for short-term use.

  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 10 drops tarragon
  • 7 drops clary sage essential oil
  • 7 drops peppermint essential oil

Place essential oils into one-ounce glass bottle. Place cap on bottle and shake. Reopen and add sesame oil. Cap and shake again. Label. Massage a palmful of the blend onto abdomen as needed.

Source: Jade Shutes, B.A., Dipl. AT, CHNAHA. Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus L.)."  NAHA Aromatherapy Journal, Summer 2017.2, p. 45–51.

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