West Indian Bay Essential Oil

Latin name Pimenta racemosa – Family species Myrtaceae

bayWest Indian Bay is also referred to as Myrcia Acris, Pimenta Acris, Myrcia, Bay, Bay Rum Tree, Wild Cinnamon, Bayberry, Bay Leaf, but is NOT the same as Laurel Leaf Oil (Laurus nobilis) nor North American bayberry or wax myrtle (Myrica cerifera). An interesting note is the leaves of the bay tree used to be commonly distilled with rum and water to produce “bay rum”, a formulation used primarily on the hair.

Oil Selection Guide

Color – Deep, dark yellow
Viscosity – Medium to watery
Scent – Spicy, fresh top note, sweet, balsamy undertone
Perfume aroma: Base / middle / top note

Oil Source Information

Plant Type – Tree
Part Used – Leaves
Countries of Origin – West Indies (as the name infers), St. Thomas (Virgin Islands), Jamaica, South and Central America
Extraction Method – Steam distillation (salt or sea water sometimes used in process)

Known Chemical Constituents

Eugenol, chavicol, myrcene, cineol, methyl eugenol, linalol, limonene

Applications and Uses

Used in aromatherapy, and found in perfumery and product fragrances (soaps, lotions, detergents). Also in foods such as condiments and drinks.

Bay oil blends well with


Precautions / Contraindications

High eugenol content is a concern with bay oil.
Take extreme care to avoid using bay essential oil near mucous membranes.
See also Essential Oils Safety and Usage.

References and Resources

See Aromatherapy References and Resources page.

Other Links of Interest

Studies Involving Bay Oil

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