Geranium Essential Oil
Pelargonium graveolens / Pelargonium asperum
Geranium Essential Oil rightfully holds a beautiful reputation as an essential oil that is especially well suited for women. It's supportive to the reproductive system, menstrual cycle and during the course of menopause. Its benefits, however, don't just end there. It's a wonderful essential oil for use in balancing the skin's production of sebum and in helping with acne. Geranium Essential Oil is astringent, and it can also be helpful with hemorrhoids and varicose veins. Refer to the Uses selection below for more benefits and uses.
Aromatically, Geranium Essential Oil is one that may take some getting used to. It's a distinctively rosy-floral essential oil that is rather strong and dominant in blends. Over time, I began to tolerate the aroma and then gradually grew to like the aroma. Geranium Essential Oil blends especially well with essential oils in the citrus, floral, wood and mint families. If you find that you aren't crazy with the aroma, I'd recommend using it very sparingly in blends until you become more acquainted with it.
If you love Rose Otto Essential Oil and Rose Absolute, you will likely grow to love Geranium Essential Oil. In a pinch, it can serve as a suitable and economical substitute for Rose Essential Oil. However, the therapeutic and emotional properties are different.
Emotionally, Geranium Essential Oil is a calming and balancing oil, and it can be helpful with anxiety and depression. However, using too much could potentially have a stimulating effect for some, so it's an oil to use lightly until you become more acquainted with it.
This profile page, including the usage, benefits and safety information that appears further down on the page, pertains specifically to Geranium Essential Oil. However, Geranium Absolute is also available from some reputable suppliers. Therefore, I'll briefly mention it in this section. The Geranium Absolutes that I have worked with have come from Egypt and have a beautiful dark green color.
Absolutes are solvent extracted and are able to extract some of the heavier aromatic molecules that aren't able to be collected during the process of steam distillation. The aroma is a deeper and more complex than that of Geranium Essential Oil. Steffen Arctander describes the aroma as having "an intense and very powerful, somewhat leafy-earthy, but soft and pleasant odor. The leafy-green notes are quite pronounced, but the rich, rosy-minty undertone remains on a blotter throughout the evaporation of the oil. The odor of the absolute is less sharp and more tenacious than that of the essential oil." [Source: Steffen Arctander, Perfume and Flavor Materials of Natural Origin (Reprint Edition. Elizabeth, NJ: Pathfinder., 2017), 263.]
Geranium Absolute is a beautiful aromatic oil to work with for perfumery and fragrancing applications. However, limited information and safety data is available for Geranium Absolute.
Geranium Essential Oil Benefits and Uses
- Female Reproductive Disorders
- Menstrual Cramps
- Premenstrual Syndrome
- Menopausal Symptoms
- Circulatory Disorders
- Reynaud'S Disease
- Varicose Veins
- Nervous Skin Disorders
- Emotional Crisis
- Stress-related Conditions
- Minor Burns
- Head Lice
- Sebum Balacing
- Urinary and Liver Tonic
Sources: Valerie Ann Worwood, The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy, 25th Anniversary Edition (Novato, CA: New World Library, 2016, 591. Neryls Purchon and Lora Cantele, Complete Aromatherapy & Essential Oils Handbook for Everyday Wellness (Toronto ON: Robert Rose, 2014), 61.
Common Method of Extraction
Plant Part Typically Used
Clear to Pale Yellow/Green
Strength of Initial Aroma
Geranium Essential Oil smells floral, fresh, sweet and slightly fruity.
Major Constituents of Egyptian Geranium Oil
- Citronellyl formate
- Geranyl Formate
Source: B. Benveniste and N. Azzo, Geranium Oil. (Mount Vernon, NY: Technical Bulletin & Newsletter, Vol. II, Kato Worldwide Ltd., July 1, 1992). Source cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 293.]
Major Constituents of Geranium Oil from Reunion
See Essential Oil Safety for a more complete list of constituents and for constituent lists of Geranium Oil sourced from various regions.
[B.M. Lawrence, Essential Oils 1981-1987 (Wheaton: Allured Publishing, 1989), 119-121. B.M. Lawrence, Progress in Essential Oils. (Perfumer & Flavorist 21 no. 6, 1996), 58-62. B.M. Lawrence, Progress in Essential Oils. (Perfumer & Flavorist 23 no. 1, 1999), 56-61. Sources cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 293.]
Geranium Essential Oil Safety Information
Tisserand and Young caution that a drug interaction may occur if using drugs metabolized by CYP2B6. They indicate that the Geranium Oil possesses a low risk of skin sensitization and recommend a dermal maximum of 17.5%. 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), 293.]
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. 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 basic educational purposes only. The references to safety information, test results, constituents and percentages is generalized information. Essential oils can vary greatly in composition. 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 composition and color can vary based on harvesting, distillation, age of the essential oil and other factors. Profiles for several CO2 Extracts and absolutes are included within the directory, and are denoted as such.