Latin name Cistus ladanifer – Family species Cistaceae
The Labdanum plant is also referred to as Cistus and Rock Rose, and Labdanum oil is also known as Cistus oil.
“The oil distilled from the resin has a warm, dry, woody-spicy musk odor which diffuses well. It is the best natural substitute for sperm whale ambergris, and the scent is widely used as an erogenous fixative in perfumes, aftershaves, and cosmetics. Tests show no irritation at 8 percent dilution, but very weak sensitizing above 0.25 percent.” –Crabtree & Evelyn Fragrant Herbal: Enhancing Your Life with Aromatic Herbs and Essential Oils
Labdanum should not be confused with Laudanum, which is a tincture of opium.
Oil Selection Guide
Color – Dark yellow to amber
Viscosity – Viscous
Scent – sweet, warm, dry, herby
Perfume Aroma – Base to middle note
Oil Source Information
Plant Type – Shrub
Parts Used – Gum, absolute, leaves and twigs
Countries of Origin – France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Morocco, Cyprus, Yugoslavia (former)
Extraction Method – Steam distillation
Known Chemical Constituents
camphene, sabinene, myrcene, phellandrene, limonene, cymene, cineol, borneol, nerol, geraniol, fenchone
Applications and Uses
Used somewhat in aromatherapy, Labdanum is also used as fixative and fragrance in perfumes, colognes, lotions, powders, soaps, detergents, and aftershaves. Also as flavoring in commercial food (especially meat, ice cream, and candy) and drink.
Labdanum blends well with
Precautions / Contraindications
Warnings state that Labdanum oil should be avoided during pregnancy, and that it should only be used in moderation (if at all).
Labdanum oil will stain, so don’t apply to clothing or fabric.
See also Essential Oils Safety and Usage.
References and Resources
See Aromatherapy References and Resources page.
Other Links of Interest
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