Galbanum essential oil is by no means a popular oil. But it has some great benefits like strong antibacterial and insecticidal effects.
Here is more about the properties, benefits and uses of galbanum essential oil.
Galbanum Essential Oil Properties
There are a couple botanical names for galbanum. The two typically used are Ferula gummosa and Ferula galbaniflua.
Be sure to look for these names when buying this oil.
Color and smell
Galbanum oil ranges in color from clear to yellow to pale green. And since the oil is made from galbanum resin, it has a woody, balsamic, slightly fruity scent.
What is in the oil?
The main compound in galbanum essential oil is beta-pinene. It can make up 40% to 60% of the oil.
Other important compounds in the oil include: alpha-pinene, delta-3-carene, limonene, delta-cadinene and terpinolene. Alpha-cadinol, myrcene, and sabinene have also been reported.
Galbanum Essential Oil Benefits
There are few studies that look into the benefits of galbanum essential oil. Here’s what I could find:
It is antibacterial
This 2009 study tested galbanum essential oil on several bacterial strains. The study found the oil was effective against Escherichia coli. But, it was not as strong against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a known harmful pathogen.
This 2011 study compared the antibacterial effects of fennel, galbanum and rosemary oils. The oils were tested against antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. You may know them as MRSA and MSSA, the scary bacteria that can infect surgical wounds (think of wound infections from E!’s Botched).
Anyway, galbanum had the best antibacterial activity against MRSA and MSSA. Amazing right? Galbanum was stronger than fennel and rosemary!
It has repellent and insecticidal benefits
The repellent effects of 23 essential oils were investigated in this 2016 study. The insect used here was the Aedes aegypti mosquito.
Litsea, rosewood, geranium, lemongrass, camphor and citronella oils showed better repellency than galbanum. But galbanum was stronger than a long list of powerful essential oils like cinnamon, thyme, and peppermint.
So you can see galbanum has moderate repellent effects. But, you should know, only litsea oil had similar effects to DEET, a commercial insecticide. So don’t expect these oils to be more effective than your commercial spray. They’re just better to use for your health and the environment.
That’s all the research I could find on galbanum essential oil. Bummer!
Uses of Galbanum Essential Oil
If you are into a wonderful woody, balsamic scent then reach for this essential oil. And add it to your diffuser with other oils like basil, citronella, frankincense, geranium, palmarosa, pine, and ylang ylang.
You can also use this oil on your skin. But be sure to patch test first. And dilute the oil properly (less than 5% concentration) in a carrier oil of your choice like safflower oil or olive oil.
Lastly, as with all other essential oils, talk to your physician before using galbanum essential oil. This is especially important if you are pregnant or breastfeeding or using any special medication.
Where to buy galbanum essential oil?