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Cinnamon Essential Oil
Oil distilled from the bark of the cinnamon tree is typically preferred over the oil distilled from the leaves. Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil, however, tends to be much more costly.
Aromatically, Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil is much richer in aroma than ground cinnamon. Cinnamon Bark Oil tends to be warming, stimulating and energizing. It blends well with many other essential oils especially oils in the wood, spice, citrus and mint families.
It is my understanding that most of the "Ground Cinnamon" that we purchase in grocery stores, and even most of the "Cinnamon Sticks" that are sold are not true cinnamon, but are really its more affordable cousin, Cassia, Cinnamomum cassia.
Topically, both Cinnamon Bark and Cinnamon Leaf oils should be used with extreme caution, if at all. The dermal maximum for Cinnamon Bark is even less than for Cinnamon Leaf. Refer to the Safety Information section below for more information.
Common Method of Extraction
Plant Part Typically Used
Leaf or Bark
Slightly oily feeling
Strength of Initial Aroma
Cinnamon Essential Oil is peppery, earthy, spicy, bright yet slightly woodsy.
Cinnamon Oil Uses
Constipation, exhaustion, flatulence, lice, low blood pressure, rheumatism, scabies, stress. [Julia Lawless, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (Rockport, MA: Element Books, 1995), 58-67.]
Bark Oil Major Constituents
[B.M. Lawrence, Essential Oils 1988-1991 (Wheaton: Allured Publishing, 1995), 201. F. Tateo, F. Chizzini, The Composition and Quality of Supercritical CO2 Extracted Cinnamon. (Journal of Essential Oil Research 1, 1989), 165-168. K.H. Kubeczka, Essential Oils Analysis by Capillary Gas Chromatography and Carbon-13 NMR Spectoroscopy, Second Edition. (Chichester: Wiley, 2002). Sources cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 248-249.]
Leaf Oil Major Constituents
[B.M. Lawrence, Essential Oils 1976-1978 (Wheaton: Allured Publishing, 1979), 29. B.M. Lawrence, Essential Oils 1988-1991 (Wheaton: Allured Publishing, 1995), 148, 201. Sources cited in Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 248-249.]
Tisserand and Young indicate that both the bark and the leaf oil are low risk for mucous membrane irritation, may inhibit blood clotting and pose a drug interaction hazard. Cinnamon Bark Oil may cause embryotoxicity and is contraindicated in pregnancy and breastfeeding. There is a high risk of skin sensitization with the bark oil, and Tisserand and Young recommend a dermal maximum of 0.07% for the bark oil. For the leaf oil, Tisserand and Young recommend a dermal maximum of 0.6%. Reading Tisserand and Young's full profile for both the bark and leaf oils is recommended. [Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 248-250.]
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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