Palmarosa essential oil is primarily an antiseptic for skin use and for this purpose it is used in the cosmetic industry. In addition to the antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, this essential oil is also attributed an antidepressant.

The plant and the production of essential oil

Palmarosa is also known as Indian geranium, but looking at the botanical classification we discover that the plant whose scientific name is Cymbopogon martinii is not even part of the same family as roses or geraniums , in fact belongs to the Poaceae or Graminaceae family (and to the Cymbopogon genus which is that of lemongrass) while the other two belong to Rosaceae and Geraniaceae. But if we look at the composition of the essential oil we find geraniol as the main component which explains why a plant related to citronella smells of rose. Palmarosa is originally from India and Indochina but today it is cultivated in many other countries precisely for the essential oil. It is a herbaceous plant that grows to considerable heights for this type of plant (up to 3 meters) with a rather robust stem. The essential oil is obtained from the plant harvested after it has completed flowering which is rather slow (it takes three months). Precisely because of the rose-like scent in the cosmetic industry it is used to give the smell to rose-based products.

Properties of palmarosa essential oil

As we said, apart from perfume, palmarosa is closely related to citronella (indeed botanically it is a citronella since it belongs to the genus Cymbopogon to which the species from which citronella is obtained belong), so it should come as no surprise that the main property for which it is known both as an antiseptic and antifungal. In common with geranium, however, it has the ability to be a repellent for insects, which, as known, do not like the smell.

Topical use of palmarosa essential oil

Palmarosa essential oil is mainly used on the skin, the most obvious use is against acne (like any other essential oil that has strong antiseptic properties, even if palmarosa would seem to have the advantage of be particularly well tolerated) a more specific use is to contrast wrinkles, in fact it would stimulate cell regeneration. For this purpose it can be used in massages (as we always remember that the massage will be carried out with a massage oil in which only a few drops of essential oil have been added) both on the face to fight wrinkles and on the body to fight stretch marks.< /p>

As regards the anti-acne activity, a few drops can be added to the tonic you use for the face.


In aromatherapy, palmarosa essential oil has an antidepressant and anti-stress effect. In other words it supports calming. Apart from the beneficial effects on our psyche, environmental diffusion can instead serve to keep insects away. In environments where healing sessions are carried out, palmarosa essential oil can help to prepare the


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