Botanical Name: Styrax benzoin
Part of Plant: Resin
Cultivation: Ethically wildcrafted
Origin: Sumatra, Indonesia
Size: 1/3 oz. (10 ml)
Extraction Method: Solvent extraction
Precautions: Non-toxic, non-irritant, possible sensitization.
Note: This oil is diluted because it is extremely viscous. Having a high resistance to flow, without dilution it would be more difficult to remove from the bottle.
Cathy’s Comments: This is a (barely) liquid resin with a sweet, warm, vanilla-ish aroma. When I smell it I feel immediately grounded, calmed and uplifted all at the same time. It has been used since antiquity for incense and fumigation, and has gone by names such as Friar’s balsam and gum Benjamin. One of its main constituents-benzoic acid-has been shown to fight fungi, reduce skin inflammation, prevent infection, and improve mental health. What is fascinating to me is how intuitive our ancestors were about the uses of essential oils and plant medicine. They did not have microscopes, gas chromatography, or the internet…yet they repeatedly used plant medicine in appropriate ways based upon the plants’ chemical constituents, all by observing, paying attention, and generations of applied research, which we now disparage as “anecdotal.”
For more information, see Benzoin Absolute oil profile.