Myrrh and patchouli two fabulous relaxing and grounding base note oils.
All base note essential oils deserve special attention about what they are capable of regarding our well-being.
But we will start with myrrh, commiphorra myrrha essential oil. The name ‘myrrh’ comes from Arabic and Hebrew word ‘mur’, which means bitter. Myrrh essential oil is distilled from the myrrh resin.
When the bush is wounded it exudes resin. Myrrha exudes pale yellow liquid, which turns brown as it hardens. If you are interested in how the bush looks like, it has sturdy knotted branches, trifoliate leaves and small white flowers.
Myrrh was first mentioned 4000 years ago. It was an ingredient of the Egyptian perfume ‘kyphi’, and was an important ingredient in embalming.
Myrrh therapeutic properties are frequently mentioned in the testaments, the Koran, and in Greek and Roman texts. Myrrh was introduced in Chinese medicine in the 7th century. It was of incomparable financial value.
Myrrh oil instills a deep sense of calm and tranquillity on the mind. Myrrh oil should be considered for someone who is prone to over-thinking, worry and mental distraction. Myrrh’s effect on the mind is like that of frankincense – one of inner stillness and peace.
The best way to use the oil is topical, in massage, bath, or skincare. It can also be used for direct inhalation, also in a diffuser.
Patchouli, pogostemom cablin essential oil originates from an aromatic shrub with erect stems, large green leaves and small white-pink flowers. To extract patchouli oil it is necessary to rupture the cell walls of the leaf before steam distillation.
This is done by a controlled, light fermentation, by scalding with heated steam, or by stacking or baling the dried leaves, thus ‘curing’ them by fermentation. This is said to produce the best quality patchouli oil.
Its scent was used to mask the tarry odour of marihuana in the 1960s. In Asia, patchouli has been part of the traditional systems of medicine. Patchouli is beneficial for alleviating depression, anxiety and stress related conditions. The oil has a harmonising and stabilising effect on the mind when over-thinking and worrying tend to destabilise one’s self-confidence.
The best way to apply is to use through massage, or in a bath, with your skincare, through inhalation or in a diffuser.
Both base note oils are relaxing for our bodies and mind. They all tend to soothe irritation, calm emotions and are gentle on the skin. This is what we love in essential oils: they are amazing healers for our bodies and mind.
Learn more about Aromatherapy, get our Aromatherapy guide for beginners