Essential Oils – Grapefruit, Mandarin Orange, and Orange


The best essential oil is expressed from the peel of fresh, ripe, grapefruit; the distilled oil is inferior. It has a fresh, sweet, citrus aroma and blends well with basil, bergamot, cedarwood, chamomile, frankincense, geranium, palmarosa, rosewood, and ylang-ylang.

Unlike the other citrus oils, grapefruit is not a photosensitizer and may be used as a substitute for them in skin-care preparations if the skin is to be exposed to sunlight. However, grapefruit oil oxidizes quickly, so only buy in very small amounts and use within a short time.

Grapefruit oil contracts and tones tissues, and is useful in blends for oily skin and acne. It eases muscle stiffness, soreness, and fatigue, and is a useful travel fatigue and jet lag.

Grapefruit’s properties balance and tone the digestive system, and have a cleansing effect on the kidneys, liver and gall bladder, and the lymphatic system.

Mandarin Orange

Mandarin and tangerine are not the same. The names mandarin and tangerine are often used to describe the same oil, but they are in fact different cultivars within the same species, and the oils have slightly different properties.

Mandarin oil is expressed from the peel of the ripe fruit. An inferior oil is steam-distilled from leaves and twigs. Mandarin is a safe, delicate oil to use in baths and massage oils for children, the elderly and during pregnancy, and as a terrific “pick-me-up” for those recovering from illness. The perfume that blends well with basil, bergamot, black pepper, chamomile, grapefruit, lavender, lemon, lime, neroli, orange, palmarosa, petitgrain, and rose.

A lovely oil to use in blends to prevent or treat stretch marks and scars, and also for ageing and mature skin. One of the main applications is when included in a massage oil for use over the stomach where it will act as a digestive tonic. Used in this way, it is particularly good for babies suffering from the “miseries” and pain of colic, as the digestive properties will relieve the cramps, and the sedative action will calm the fretfulness.


Glowing and sunny, fresh oranges and orange juice are rich in vitamin C and among the most popular fruits and juices. The essential oil is expressed from the orange peel. The perfume is happy and “citrusy”, and blends well with angelica, benzoin, cinnamon, cypress, frankincense, lavender, neroli, nutmeg, petitgrain, rose, and rosewood. It is widely used as a fragrance in soups, cosmetics, colognes, and perfumes, and also as a flavoring component in liqueurs, soft drinks, and food.

Orange oil will oxidize. Buy in small amounts and use within three to four months.

Orange oil is a good skin tonic for all skin types. It stimulates and brightens oily skin but is also useful for dry and normal skin. In blends with other oils, it is useful to treat fungal infections, and to kill bacteria.

Used in massage oil and applied over the stomach and abdomen, it has a toning effect on the digestive system and relieves wind, cramps and spasms in the intestines, settles a nervous stomach, and eases indigestion.

Orange oil’s properties act to increase energy, boost the immune system, and reduce fever during cold and influenza. Use only four drops dissolved in vegetable oil to baths to prevent irritation.

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