Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Essential oils: Potential allergens

Please remember to always use your essential oils with caution. Yes, they're natural, but that doesn't mean they don't have an impact on us. They can annoy snakes, they can make us feel calmer or more hyper, and they can be potential allergens.

Take a look at this review of all the " Data of the Information Network of Departments of Dermatology (IVDK; on all patients patch tested between January 2000 and December 2008 with essential oils were retrospectively analysed. Results: 15 682 patients of 84 716 consulting in the period had been tested with at least one essential oil, and 637 reacted positively to at least one of the essential oils, most commonly to ylang-ylang oil (I and II) (3.1% as weighted mean of positive tests in special series and consecutive testing), lemongrass oil (1.8%), jasmine absolute (1.6%), sandalwood oil and clove oil (1.5% each)."

Those are pretty significant findings. We know that essential oils can be allergens - take a look at eugenol, for instance - which is why some oils and some of their components must be declared on EU packaging, and it's something to think about when you're making your products. Natural doesn't mean innocuous...


Nedeia said...

Hi Susan!

My English is not strong today, so could you please clarify something for me?

3.1% out of 15.682 people were allergic to jasmin absolute, or some of those 15682 were allergic at 3.1% Jasmin absolute in compositions?

Just to be sure I understand it correctly :-)

Megan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Little Bird said...

Thank you so much for writing this. People do not seem to get that someone can be allergic to an essential oil, it's not even rare!

I'm allergic to bergamot and people tell me I can still soap with it... Um no.