You may be very familiar with chamomile tea.
If coffee is for an energized start on your day, then chamomile tea is for a relaxing sleep at night. But there is much more to chamomile than its use for nighttime tea.
Over the centuries, people from various civilizations sing praises for chamomile’s numerous uses as an herb. From digestive conditions to promoting sleep, this herb has PLENTY of abilities to share.
You can also find this medicinal herb in essential oil form – chamomile oil! And you’d be surprised how useful this oil can be for your skin.
Read on to know more about chamomile oil and what it can do to help us take better care of our skin!
What is Chamomile Oil?
Chamomile oil is the essential oil extracted from the fresh flowers of the chamomile plant.
The standard process of extraction is through steam distillation of the flowers.
Several daisy-like plants bear the common name chamomile. For essential oil-producing plants, there are two common types widely used in cosmetics and aromatherapy:
Roman chamomile (Anthemis nobilis) is commonly cultivated in Belgium and southern England.
It is popularly referred to as the lawn or garden chamomile as it grows low to the ground – with a height of 9 in (23cm) or less.
Names associated with this variant also include English, true, or double chamomile.
German chamomile (Matricaria recutita) is extensively grown in Germany, Hungary, and parts of the former Soviet Union.
This plant grows longer than the Roman chamomile with a height of 3ft (1m) in general.
Common names used to refer to this variant include Hungarian, single, genuine, wild, or sweet false chamomile.
In the essential oils produced by these two variants, the most distinguishing quality is in their color. Roman chamomile oil is a yellow-pale blue in color; German chamomile oil appears deep blue.
Along with this, the oils also differ in smell, uses, and effects.
I believe it’s best to have a separate post for these two variants because they differ so much.
For this post, we will be focusing on the Roman chamomile oil.
Between the two options, Roman variant of the oil’s prominent effects are closer to what makes chamomile tea popular – soothing and calming.
The pleasant, apple scent of the Roman chamomile flower translates to the essential oil – sweet and fruity.
Steam distilled fresh flowers produce 1.7% of the Roman essential oil. The oil contains a high level of esters which gives it its soothing and skin-conditioning properties.
Terpenoid chamazulene is also present in the oil. This constituent gives the oil its pale blue color.
Roman variant of the oil is valued for its anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, antispasmodic, anti-oxidant, antiemetic, antiseptic, carminative, and sedative properties.
Many of these properties are useful for our skin, which you will find out as we delve deeper into this oil.As we will find out later on in this post, Roman chamomile oil is a strong but humble oil. If utilized correctly, it works on the mind, body, and spirit.
History of Chamomile Oil
Chamomile is one of the most widely documented medicinal herbs that we have.
26 countries include this herb in their pharmacopeias, which is a publication that provides for medicinal plants and their known uses.
We can trace the use of chamomile as a medicinal herb all the way back to ancient Greece and Rome.
The name “chamomile” comes from two Greek words: χαμαίμηλον (khamaimēlon) and χαμαί (khamai), which means “ground apple.”
The herb earned this name because of its apple-like scent, more evident in Roman chamomile in the two popular variants.
Ancient Egyptians considered chamomile as a sacred gift from the sun god, Ra.
They used the herb to alleviate fever and sunstroke.
In the sixth century, chamomile was used to treat insomnia, back pain, neuralgia, rheumatism, skin conditions, indigestion, flatulence, headaches, and gout.
Fun fact: Chamomile was revered as one of nine sacred herbs by the ancient Saxons. It was referred to as Mægðe (Maythe) in the poem Lay of the Nine Herbs.
Different Uses of Chamomile Oil
In Europe, chamomile as an herb is considered as a “cure-all.” While in Germany, the description of this herb is “alles zutraut,” meaning “capable of anything.” In this list that we have for this essential oil’s various uses, we can clearly see how deserving chamomile is of the previous descriptions:
- for scenting perfumes, candles, creams, or other aromatherapy products
- for topical creams or massage and bath oils intended for the treatment of bruises, scrapes, skin irritations, and joint pain
- for lotions designed to moisturize and relieve muscle pain
- for aid in teething, colic, and temper tantrums in children
In aromatherapy, the value of chamomile oil is similar to its importance in teas – for promoting a night of restful sleep. Those who have insomnia and even headaches and migraines can benefit from this oil. Other benefits in aromatherapy, specifically the Roman variant, are for easing feelings of grief, anger, discontent, or over-sensitivity.
Remember to use a diffuser to evenly scatter the oil molecules into the air, which aids gentler inhalation.
Skin Benefits of Chamomile Oil
With all we know about Roman chamomile oil, it is now time to uncover this oil’s benefits for our skin!
Since the herb has existed for so long, many kinds of research have delved into finding what roman chamomile can contribute to the skin.
Because of extensive studies, the Roman variant of this oil is often an ingredient you’ll see in cosmetic preparations.So, let’s get right to it! Here are Roman chamomile oil’s benefits for our skin.
Soothes and Softens Skin
As mentioned above, Roman chamomile oil contains a high level of esters. Esters replace the natural esters in our skin responsible for keeping the skin smooth and giving protection. When skin becomes dry and irritated, an essential oil with a high level of esters will do just the trick to soothe and soften skin.
Luckily, this oil is precisely that!
So, if you want to soothe your skin and achieve a smooth texture, this oil is your pal. People of all skin types will benefit from this oil, but especially people with dry and matured skin, and those who suffer from redness.
Roman chamomile oil’s anti-inflammatory properties separate it from German chamomile. This property is abundant in Roman chamomile compared to the other variant.
We know that in tackling our skin concerns, inflammation is bound to be one of our enemies. Rough patches can turn itchy and red for those with dry skin. While those who are battling acne will have inflamed bumps that need remedy.
If you are battling any of these, incorporating Roman chamomile into your routine will do just the trick.
Promotes Wound Healing
The antiseptic and antimicrobial properties of Roman chamomile oil is double trouble for those causing our skin concerns. Antiseptic components disinfect and prevent the growth of harmful bacteria; while, antimicrobial components target microorganisms that escaped the antiseptic's wrath.
So, what does this mean for our skin?
We know it is inevitable to have pimples that pop suddenly and leave gaping holes that scab over. Some of these wounds take so much time to heal, which happens when our skin’s environment does not promote healing.
Using Roman chamomile will boost our skin’s ability to heal wounds. Existing wounds will heal faster by preventing the growth of bacteria that may infect the wounds further. The oil will also help in eliminating existing bacteria to boost the wound’s healing.
Calms and Relaxes
As with chamomile tea, Roman chamomile oil helps calm and relax our mind and body. What does this have to do with our skin?
Stress can take a toll on us – which will certainly show on our skin. Acne can be triggered when stress overcomes us. With roman chamomile, we can achieve calmness and relaxation while also addressing our skin’s existing problems.
How to Use Chamomile Oil
With chamomile oil’s numerous properties, I bet you are all excited to incorporate this oil into your routine! Another great thing about using this oil is that its sweet fruity scent is mild and alluring to most people. So, if you have a hard time incorporating essential oils because of strong odors, this oil is a great starting point.
So, how can we reap the benefits of this oil?
You can start by incorporating this oil into your existing products. Roman chamomile oil is light and watery, so a few drops of this into your moisturizer or toner will blend nicely.
If you want to prepare a DIY project featuring this oil, I have just the recipe for you! Here is a facial mist recipe featuring Roman chamomile. Along with this oil are lavender and clary sage. These three EOs are all valued not just for their curative properties for our skin, but also for their relaxing and de-stressing qualities. Combining all these in a facial mist will promote better skin and a more relaxed mind!
Face Mist with Roman Chamomile Oil
- A tinted spray top bottle (2.4oz capacity)
How To Prepare and Use It?
- Combine all essential oils in the spray top bottle.
- Close the bottle and swirl to mix the oils.
- Add 2oz of water and shake.
- Stash this in your purse for a relaxing mix you can use throughout the day.
Is Chamomile Oil Safe?
Since chamomile, as a medicinal herb, has existed for such a long time, many medical standards deem this herb and its essential oil as safe for general use. Of course, we must utilize it properly to prevent any adverse reactions.
With all essential oils, you must dilute Roman chamomile oil in a carrier oil. Though it smells lovely and mild, you must not neglect to dilute this oil! Read this guide on dilution so you can be sure to dilute your essential oil adequately.
Always perform a patch test when using new oil. Dilute a small amount of the EO in a carrier oil and place a drop of it on the inner area of your elbow. Leave it on for 24 hours and observe the skin for any reactions.
For safety purposes, it is not advised for pregnant and breastfeeding women to use essential oils without consulting medical professionals.
For children and the elderly, it is highly advised to contact your physician or doctor before using oils. Self-treatment of chronic diseases by applying Roman chamomile oil may also hold serious consequences without professional advice.
How to Choose Chamomile Oil
As with all essential oils, remember not to buy Roman chamomile oil from food stores. Apart from these reminders, here are the things you should look for when choosing your sweet fruity Roman chamomile:
- 100% essential oil
- Therapeutic grade
To Wrap It Up
Medicinal herbs are so amazing! One day you’re just sipping on some lovely, warm chamomile tea. Next thing you know, you’ll be spraying your face with roman chamomile oil’s goodness!
Some may think that essential oils are a trick or a marketing stunt. But indeed, these are gifts from mother nature that, when utilized properly, can give us so many benefits. Just always be on the lookout for trustworthy brands when it comes to essential oils! A bottle may be labeled Roman chamomile but only contain 20% of the real thing. And you’ll still have to pay for the full price of a bottle! Be smart and cautious to fully enjoy this oil’s benefits.
I hope you learned a thing or two from this post.
Have you tried either of the two variants of chamomile oil? Which do you like best? Share in the comments below!
Do you have any recipes you’d like to share using Roman chamomile? I’d love to hear your ideas.
Stay tuned and take skin care