Lemon Essential Oil

Latin name Citrus limonum / Citrus limon – Family Rutaceae

lemonLemon oil is reputed to be an extremely useful and versatile oil, much like its close relative lime essential oil to which it shares many of the same uses in aromatherapy application. Most find lemon essential oil, with its citrusy scent, to be wonderfully energizing and refreshing. There is a terpeneless oil, referred to as cedro oil, which is produced as well and preferred in aromatherapy.

According to Aromatherapy (Complementary Health) by Vivan Lunny M.D., “Lemon is an air antiseptic” and “Essential oil of lemon is beneficial in blends for anxiety, concentration, and insomnia. It relieves stress and tension.” She also includes lemon essential oil under oils good for oily or overactive skin, stating that lemon essential oil “may balance the production of sebum while having an anti-infectious effect.”

It should be noted that lemon essential oil is NOT the same as lemon juice. Although essential oils are sometimes added to commercial products as a flavoring and essence, as a practice and a caution herbBee recommends consumers never add essential oils to food or drink or otherwise consume essential oils. The concentration of chemicals and constituents in essential oils is extremely high, and oils found on the marketplace can be adulterated and unsafe for consumption.

Oil Selection Guide

Color – Pale greenish-yellow (browns with age)
Viscosity – Watery
Scent – Clean, light, citrusy, fresh
Perfume Aroma – Top / middle note

Oil Source Information

Plant Type – Tree
Parts Used – Rind of fruit
Countries of Origin – United States (California, Florida), Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Sicily, Cyprus, Guinea, Israel, Spain, Portugal
Extraction Method – Cold expression

Known Chemical Constituents

d limonene, citral, gamma terpinene, pinenes, sabinene, myrcene, linalol, geraniol, octanol, nonanol, bergamotene, phellandrene, citronellal, citroptene

Applications and Uses

As well as being used in aromatherapy, lemon essential oil is used as a fragrance in cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, cleaning products, soaps, detergents, toilet waters, perfumes, eau de colognes. Lemon is also used to commercially flavor foods and beverages.

Lemon blends well with

Recipes and Ideas

Precautions / Contraindications

Sources say to use Lemon only in moderation and on skin only if properly diluted.
Can cause irritation to sensitive skin (terpene oil).
Lemon (terpene oil) is phototoxic.
Lemon oil, as with all citrus oils, has a six month shelf life.
See also Essential Oils Safety and Usage.

References and Resources

See Aromatherapy References and Resources page.

Articles and Studies Involving Lemon Essential Oil

Aromatherapy Falls Short, Study Finds

Lemon oil shown to enhance mood, but effects on wounds, pain relief, and immune status unproven.

By Amanda Gardner – HealthDay Reporter – Published at washingtonpost.com.

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