Clove Bud Essential Oil
Clove Bud Essential Oil is steam distilled from the flowering buds of the clove tree. Clove stem and clove leaf essential oils are also available, but essential oil distilled from the buds is generally favored due to its aroma.
Clove Bud Essential Oil generally contains up to 85% Eugenol, a phenol that dramatically contributes to the oil's aroma, therapeutic properties, and safety precautions. Clove Bud Essential Oil is also comprised of a number of other constituents, particularly the sesquiterpene B-caryophyllene and the ester Eugenyl acetate.
Clove Essential Oil is very helpful for use in blends intended to help relieve pain. It is also a powerful antimicrobial essential oil. However, Clove Essential Oil can be very irritating to the skin. Tisserand and Young recommend a dermal maximum of just 0.5%. (Please refer to the Safety Information section below for more information.)
Clove Oil is also known for its benefits in dental applications. It's often recommended for use with dental pain. Although numerous sources suggest applying a drop of Clove Essential Oil neat to a painful tooth, Clove Essential Oil is very potent and using it at full strength for any purpose is not recommended.
Aromatically, Clove Bud Essential Oil possesses a strong, warm, spicy aroma that blends well with other spicy essential oils like Cinnamon Bark. It also blends well with essential oils in the citrus, wood and floral families. It's a strong oil, so when first learning to blend with it, try using it sparingly in blends.
Emotionally, I find Clove Bud Essential Oil to be an invigorating and mentally stimulating essential oil. American College of Healthcare Sciences principal Dorene Petersen has undertaken research regarding cognitive and brain health. She presents that Clove Bud Essential Oil shows promise for assisting in the management of neurodegenerative diseases. [Dorene Petersen, Presentation: Clinical Use of Aromatherapy for Brain Health: 7 Essential Oils. August 9, 2017, New Brunswick, NJ. Alliance of International Aromatherapists 2017 Conference. AIA 2017 Conference Proceedings page 221-222.]
Robbi Zeck offers a nice profile for Clove Bud Essential Oil and mentions that "Clove Bud heightens inner strengths when external and internal environments need to change." [Robbi Zeck, ND, The Blossoming Heart: Aromatherapy for Healing and Transformation (Victoria, Australia: Aroma Tours, 2008), 74.]
Syzygium aromaticum / Eugenia caryophyllata
Common Method of Extraction
Plant Part Typically Used
Strength of Initial Aroma
Spicy, warming yet slightly bitter, woody, reminiscent of true clove buds, but richer.
Clove Essential Oil Uses
Cognitive support and brain health. [Dorene Petersen, Presentation: Clinical Use of Aromatherapy for Brain Health: 7 Essential Oils. August 9, 2017, New Brunswick, NJ. Alliance of International Aromatherapists 2017 Conference. AIA 2017 Conference Proceedings page 221-222.]
Pain relief, bacterial infection, fungal infection, viral skin infection, warts, verrucas, toothache, gum disease, muscle pain, rheumatism, flu, bronchitis, tired limbs, nausea, flatulence, stomach cramp, abdominal spasm, parasitic, infection, scabies, ringworm. [Valerie Ann Worwood, The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy, 25th Anniversary Edition (Novato, CA: New World Library, 2016, 581.]
[K.H. Kubeczka, Essential Oils Analysis by Capillary Gas Chromatography and Carbon-13 NMR Spectoroscopy, Second Edition. (Chichester: Wiley, 2002). B.M. Lawrence, Essential Oils 1979-1980 (Wheaton: Allured Publishing, 1981), 33-34. B.M. Lawrence, Essential Oils 1988-1991 (Wheaton: Allured Publishing, 1993), 36. Sources cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 254.]
Clove Bud Essential Oil Safety Information
Tisserand and Young indicate that when using Clove Bud Oil, there is moderate risk for mucous membrane irritation, may inhibit blood clotting and pose a drug interaction hazard. It may cause embryotoxicity. There is a moderate risk of skin sensitization, and Tisserand and Young recommend a dermal maximum of 0.5%. They advise not to use topically on children age 2 or younger. Reading Tisserand and Young's full profile is recommended. [Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 255.]
Because this essential oil poses a higher risk of causing irritation and sensitization, it is recommended that it be avoided in the bath, even if it is solubilized/diluted.
General Safety Information
Do not take any oils internally and do not apply undiluted essential oils, absolutes, CO2s or other concentrated essences onto the skin without advanced essential oil knowledge or consultation from a qualified aromatherapy practitioner. For general dilution information, read AromaWeb's Guide to Diluting Essential Oils. If you are pregnant, epileptic, have liver damage, have cancer, or have any other medical problem, use oils only under the proper guidance of a qualified aromatherapy practitioner. Use extreme caution when using oils with children and be sure to first read the recommended dilution ratios for children. It is safest to consult a qualified aromatherapy practitioner before using oils with children, the elderly, if you have medical issues or are taking medications. Before using this or any essential oil, carefully read AromaWeb's Essential Oil Safety Information page. For in-depth information on oil safety issues, read Essential Oil Safety by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young.
Important Information About the Profiles
The essential oil information provided on AromaWeb is intended for educational purposes only. The references to safety information, constituents and percentages is generalized information. The data is not necessary complete and is not guaranteed to be accurate. The essential oil photos are intended to represent the typical and approximate color of each essential oil. However, essential oil color can vary based on harvesting, distillation, age of the essential oil and other factors. Profiles for several absolutes are included within the directory, and are denoted as such.
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