Once revered by ancient Chinese, ancient Persians, and Europeans, clove essential oil has, sadly, experienced a sharp decline in popularity. It is high time that we once again embrace this essential oil as it is packed with various benefits.


Thus, today, we will be exploring clove essential oil in details and we will be covering everything from the basics about the essential oil to its many benefits that we talked about above.


What is Clove Essential Oil Made Of?


Clove essential oil is derived from the clove tree — also known as Syzygium aromaticum. This tree is native to the Malaku Islands (or the Moluccas) in Indonesia but, today, you can find clove trees growing in other places, too.


An evergreen that grows up to between 32 and 39 feet, the clove tree thrives in a humid climate. A hardy plant, the clove tree has large green leaves and clustered crimson flowers. These flowers (or buds) initially have a pale hue, which gradually turns green, and then, finally, turn bright red when they are ready for harvest. Upon drying, the flowers transition to a deep red-brown.


How is Clove Essential oil Extracted?


Clove essential oil is produced by steam distilling the dried buds collected from the clove tree. In some cases, other parts of the tree — such as the stem and leaves — may also be used.


Certain clove essential oil is extracted via water distillation instead of steam distillation. This is to lower the percentage of eugenol (a naturally-occurring chemical found in cloves) in the essential oil. However, this is not that common and the preferred method of extraction remains steam distillation.


Benefits of Clove Essential Oil


1.      Boosts immune system


If you ever find yourself in need of a little restorative stimulant for your immune system, clove essential oil is it. Its power antioxidant properties help to fight free radicals that cause various ailments.


Besides that, the essential oil’s antibacterial and antiviral properties also come in handy in helping to boost the immune system to prevent and fight off cold and flu. It is really no wonder, then, why clove essential oil’s popularity surges drastically during cold and flu season.


2.      Treats and relieves respiratory problems


Eugenol, a chemical in clove essential oil, has excellent anti-inflammatory properties. This ensures that the oil works perfectly as a natural remedy for respiratory problems such as cough and sore throat. On top of that, the oil acts as a natural expectorant to clear the respiratory passage, too.


To help to alleviate respiratory afflictions with clove essential oil, the best way to go about it is via steam inhalation. Heat up some water to boiling point and then remove from heat. Next, pour the water into a large bowl and add three to four drops of the oil to the water. Cover your head and the bowl with a towel. Make sure that the steam is not so hot that it burns your face. Then, inhale the hot steam for approximately ten minutes.


Besides that, clove essential oil’s warming properties are sure to help to provide a little respite from the constant hacking cough, too. To relieve and cure pesky cough, make yourself a mixture of clove essential oil and honey.


3.      Promotes Good Digestive Health


Clove essential oil has long been used to ease stomach upset and other digestive problems including indigestion, diarrhea, bloating, and flatulence. For some quick relief, massage a few drops of the essential oil into your abdomen area. Alternatively, dilute a couple of drops of the oil in water and drink it.


Apart from that, research has also shown that clove essential oil has the ability to stimulate mucus production — an important gastro-protective factor. What this does is that it helps to protect the gastrointestinal tract as well as prevent the formation of ulcers and gastritis.


4.      Fights infection


As clove essential oil is packed with antiseptic properties, it can be used to prevent infection. It can treat things like cuts, wounds, scabs, fungal infections, athlete’s foot, bruises, and even insect bites. Because of the potency of the oil, it is advisable to dilute clove essential oil with a carrier oil like coconut oil.


Additionally, a study in the Oral Microbiology and Immunology journal found that two major phenolic components of the essential oil — carvacrol and eugenol — have an anticandidal effect on Candida albicans. Candida albicans is a type of yeast that causes fungal infections such as athlete’s foot and vaginal yeast infections.


5.      Fosters good dental health


If you are one to read labels, you will recognize clove as one of the ingredients in many kinds of toothpaste. This is largely because of its strong antibacterial properties and also the high concentration of eugenol in clove.


A 2012 study to investigate clove’s ability to inhibit dental erosion (or decalcification of enamel), found that clove essential oil not only significantly decrease decalcification but it actually even remineralized teeth.


So, if you are experiencing dental problems (such as toothaches, sore gums, or ulcers), let clove essential oil take care of it. For some near-instant relief, dab clove oil onto the sore area while you arrange a dental visit.


Alternatively, to use the essential oil for toothache, dilute a couple of drops of clove oil with an edible carrier oil like coconut oil. Saturate a clean cotton ball with the mixture then apply the cotton ball to the sore tooth. Reapply every two hours or so.


6.      Works as a natural insect repellent


Commonly found in many commercial insect repellents as an active ingredient, clove essential oil is extremely effective in warding off insects.


A few studies (like those from 2011, 2015, and 2016) have shown that clove essential oil is an extremely effective bug and insect repellent.


To keep insects at bay, mix a few drops of clove essential oil with a carrier oil — like coconut oil and jojoba oil. Then, massage the mixture into the skin. Besides that, a few drops of clove essential oil scattered all around the house will also be effective in keeping them away.


7.      Heals skin problems


Clove essential oil is excellent in moisturizing dry skin. To maximize this benefit, add one or two drops of the oil to your toner, serum, or moisturizer. Alternatively, you can also use clove oil as the last step to seal in the moisture. This will address skin concerns such as early signs of aging (including wrinkles and fine lines), dehydration, and flakiness.


Mixing Clove Essential Oil with Other Essential Oils


Clove essential oil goes especially well with spicy and earthy essentials oils —including ginger, cedarwood, cassia, and frankincense essential oils — because of their warm scent.


If you are looking for a floral essential oil to blend with clove oil, do consider lavender, rose, or ylang-ylang. Alternatively, for something invigorating, try blending clove essential oil with a citrusy essential oil like bergamot and orange.

Other Good-to-Know Information


Overall, clove essential oil is safe to be consumed or applied topically in the appropriate amount. However, as clove oil is extremely potent, it can cause skin irritation and allergy in some people. Hence, always start with a patch test before proceeding further.


Is Clove Essential Oil Right for You?


An underrated and under-appreciated essential oil, clove oil is an excellent addition to anyone’s collection.


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