(Cymbopogon winterianus) (Cymbopogon nardus)
INGREDIENT IN: LeAway, LePurify, LeSunburst
THERAPEUTIC PROPERTIES: antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, deodorant, insecticidal, antiparasitic, stimulant
AFFINITY FOR: cardiovascular system, bones, digestion, muscles, circulation, skin
RESONANCE: physical, spiritual, emotional
PART UTILIZED: leaf (grass)
EXTRACTION METHOD: steam distilled
APPLICATION: Citronella should always be diluted well before applying to skin.
AROMATIC CONSIDERATIONS: Citronella’s bright, fresh aroma is nourishing to the spirit. It is also stimulating to the cardiovascular system. Citronella increases the heart rate when it is abnormally low. The aroma of citronella is recognized around the world as an insect repellent.
EMOTIONAL / SPIRITUAL / MENTAL ASPECTS: Citronella clears the soul of the negative influences others may be having on us. It helps us look at our relationships, being able to evaluate whether they are a positive or a negative influence in our lives.
PHYSICAL ASPECTS: Citronella can be used safely as an antiseptic to sanitize and deodorize surfaces being used in food preparation. Citronella, diluted with a carrier oil, makes a refreshing massage therapy oil. The citronella oils are used for colds, flu, fatigue, headaches, migraines, and neuralgia. They are also good for balancing excessive perspiration and excessive oiliness of skin and hair.
GENERAL INFORMATION: These two oils belong to the same family as lemongrass and palmarosa, and are similar in their therapeutic uses. Most literature does not distinguish between the citronella ceylon and citronella java. MS (mass spectrograph) readouts reveal some interesting differences, however. Java has a much higher percentage of citronella. This is the component most responsible for the lemony aroma and is also responsible for the insect repellent properties of citronella oils. Java has a lower percentage of geraniol than the ceylon variety. Geraniol is an ingredient which is suspected of attracting certain kinds of bees—not a good attribute for an insect repellent! Obviously, java makes the best insect repellent, but both varieties are often combined with cedarwood to make insecticides and insect repellents. Ceylon is probably used because it is less expensive than java.
CAUTIONS: Too frequent use of citronella on the skin can cause contact sensitization and irritation. Citronella should be used with caution during pregnancy.