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Thyme Essential Oil
Historically, fresh and dried Thyme as well as the essential oil have been used to help ward off bacteria and viruses. Of the most commonly available Thyme Essential Oils, Thyme ct linalool tends to be amongst the most gentle and safe while Thyme ct thymol contains more thymol and can be a more potent antibacterial/antiviral oil.
Constituent and safety information varies depending on the specific chemotype of Thyme Oil used.
Some companies offer a "benchmark" Thyme Essential Oil that combines several thyme chemotypes. Benchmark Thyme Essential Oil is gaining attention for its potential in combating MRSA.
Thymus vulgaris / Thymus zygis
Common Method of Extraction
Plant Part Typically Used
Leaves and Flowers/Buds
Medium and Slightly Oily
Strength of Initial Aroma
Medium - Strong
Fresh, medicinal, herbaceous.
Thyme Oil Uses: Within Aromatherapy vs MRSA, Maggie Tisserand identifies and discusses Thyme as one of the three key essential oils that have the potential to combat MRSA. Julia Lawless lists these as other uses for Thyme Oil: Arthritis, colds, cuts, dermatitis, flu, insect bites, laryngitis, lice, muscle aches, oily skin, poor circulation, scabies, sore throat. [Julia Lawless, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (Rockport, MA: Element Books, 1995), 57-67.]
Thyme (Thymus vulgaris, ct thymol) Major Constituents
[B.M. Lawrence, Progress in Essential Oils. (Perfumer & Flavorist 20 no. 3, 1995), 67. B.M. Lawrence, Progress in Essential Oils. (Perfumer & Flavorist 23 no. 1, 1998), 42-46. Source cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 452-453.]
Thyme (Thymus vulgaris, ct thymol) Safety Information
Tisserand and Young indicate that there is moderate risk for mucous membrane irritation, it may inhibit blood clotting and pose a drug interaction hazard. There is a low risk of skin sensitization, and Tisserand and Young recommend a dermal maximum of 1.3%. 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), 452-454.]
Thyme (Thymus zygis, ct linalool) Major Constituents
[B.M. Lawrence, Essential Oils 1981-1987 (Wheaton: Allured Publishing, 1989), 106. A. Velasco-Neguerela, M.J. Perez-Alonso. Nuevos Datos Sobre la Composicion Quimica de Aceites Essenciales Procedentes de Tomillos Ibericos. (Botanica Complutensis 16, 1990), 91-97. Sources cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 451.]
Thyme (Thymus zygis, ct linalool) Safety Information
Tisserand and Young do not indicate any special precautions when using Thyme ct linalool. 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), 451.]
Refer to the second edition of Essential Oil Safety for coverage of other Thyme Oil chemotypes.
Important Information About the Profiles
The essential oil information provided on AromaWeb is intended for educational purposes only. This data is not considered complete and is not guaranteed to be accurate. The oil photos are intended to represent the typical and approximate color of each essential oil. However, oil color can vary based on harvesting, distillation and other factors. Profiles for several absolutes are included within the directory, and are denoted as such.
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. 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. It is safest to consult a qualified aromatherapy practitioner before using oils with children. For in-depth information on oil safety issues, read Essential Oil Safety by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young.
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