I adore the smell of geranium essential oil. It is so floral, rosy and wonderful! The oil is also well studied so there is a lot of evidence proving its health and beauty benefits. So let’s get into profiling geranium essential oil now.
Properties of Geranium Essential Oil
The botanical name for geranium or rose geranium is Pelargonium graveolens. You should find this name on the bottle when buying the oil.
Color & Smell of geranium oil
Geranium oil is typically colorless. But you can find also find some with slight yellow or green tinges.
Geranium has a very sweet, floral, rosy smell with hints of citrus. Yeah! It really is a pleasant smelling oil.
What is in geranium oil?
The main compounds in this oil include beta-citronellol (which can make up about 30% of the oil), geraniol (about 25%), linalool, citronellyl formate, p-menthone, alpha-pinene, geranyl acetate, myrcene, and limonene.
These compounds add to the wonderful benefits of geranium essential oil which we shall get into now.
Benefits of Geranium Essential Oil
The benefits of geranium essential oil include:
- neutralizes free radicals
- kills cancer cells in vitro
- destroys bacteria and fungi
- kills and repels insects
- kills and repels spiders, ticks and mites
It may be antioxidant
Several studies have explored the antioxidant benefits of geranium essential oil. Take, for instance, this 2009 study. It assessed the antioxidant activity of both geranium and mandarin oils. The results showed both oils exhibited strong free radical scavenging effects. In fact, they were both comparable to the standard antioxidant – ascorbic acid (Vitamin C). But, just a quick note to add, geranium did exhibit higher antioxidant activity than mandarin.
Later studies like these from 2012 and 2014 also demonstrated geranium’s antioxidant effects. But, remember, findings from a lab study may not always apply in clinical trials. So we won’t know for sure if this oil will have free radical scavenging benefits when it is used on our skin. That’s why I said geranium oil MAY be antioxidant.
It may also be anticancer
The 2009 study mentioned above also looked at the anticancer activity of geranium and mandarin oils. The oils were tested on two human leukemia cell lines at concentrations of 25 to 200 micrograms per milliliter. The results showed that geranium had strong anticancer activity, stronger in fact than mandarin essential oil.
Now just like before, these are lab tests. Clinical trials are needed to determine the potential of this essential oil in cancer therapy and treatments.
It is antibacterial
This is a great benefit of geranium essential oil. It has very significant antibacterial benefits. Actually, it was found by this 1999 study to be one of the best antibacterial essential oils. Note, this study tested 52 essential oils on nine species of multi-drug resistant bacteria.
It is also antifungal
There are lots of studies like the 1999 one mentioned above and this 2016 one that prove geranium essential oil has significant antifungal benefits. For the latter study, researchers analyzed the effects of fifteen essential oils against the fungi, Candida tropicalis.
This fungi is commonly found on dental prosthesis and dentures and has developed some resistance to clinically used antifungal agents. Therefore, the study looked to using essential oils as alternative antifungals. Interestingly, the researchers showed that of all the oils tested, geranium was the most effective oil against the fungi. That’s pretty awesome.
Another 2016 study also found geranium oil may work as a potential alternative to synthetic chemical fungicides to protect stored grain.
So it is clear geranium essential oil is definitely anti-fungal.
It is insecticidal
Again there are many studies that validate this claim.
A 2009 study investigated the insecticidal benefits of 26 essential oils on the Japanese termite, Reticulitermes speratus Kolbe. The results showed that among all the oils tested, ajowan, allspice, caraway, dill, geranium and litsea had the strongest insecticidal activity. The researchers ended by recommended more studies into using essential oils for termite control.
Another study done in 2015 explored the effects of geranium essential oil against the sweet potato whitefly (Bemisia tabaci Gennadius biotype B) that affected small tomato plants. The results? Well, the oil significantly reduced the number of the whiteflies on the tomato leaves. And geraniol and citronellol were the compounds responsible for these effects. The oil and its vapor were also found to kill the flies even at really low concentrations. Amazing!
It can repel ticks
This 2013 study looked at an interesting benefit of geranium essential oil. It tested the oil against the nymphs of the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum. Again, the oil was found to repel the ticks even at low concentrations.
That’s it! What did you think of these geranium essential oil benefits?
Uses of Geranium Essential Oil
Geranium essential oil really smells amazing. So feel free to inhale it or add it to your diffuser. And it works really well with citrus and other floral oils too. So use the oil with bergamot, chamomile, jasmine, lavender, lemon, lime, mandarin, neroli, rose and ylang ylang essential oils.
You can also use this oil on your skin. But beware it may cause your skin to become sensitive. So it is pretty important to patch this oil first before using it on your skin. And always dilute it properly with a carrier oil like apricot kernel oil or avocado oil.
Finally, always talk to your physician before using this or any other essential oil. This is especially important if you are a pregnant or breastfeeding mother or if you are using any special medication.
Where to buy geranium essential oil?