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Home Page > Essential Oil Profiles > Star Anise Essential Oil

Star Anise Essential Oil

Star Anise Oil (Illicium verum) is sometimes confused with Anise Oil (Pimpinella anisum) because both have similar names, both possess a similar aroma and both have similar, but not completely identical properties.

Star Anise Essential Oil has an aroma similar to black licorice. Star Anise Oil can be useful in diffuser and inhaler blends intended to help ease bronchitis, colds and the flu.

Star Anise Oil may also be helpful in aromatherapy blends that are intended to help digestion and muscular aches or pains.

Star Anise Oil
Star Anise Oil

Botanical Name: Illicium verum

Common Method of Extraction: Steam Distilled

Part Typically Used: Seeds

Color: Pale Yellow

Consistency: Thin

Perfumery Note: Middle

Strength of Initial Aroma: Strong

Aromatic Description: Sharp, anise and licorice-like aroma.

Star Anise

Star Anise

Star Anise Oil Uses: Rheumatism, bronchitis, coughing, colic, indigestion/cramping, colds, flu. [Julia Lawless, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (Rockport, MA: Element Books, 1995), 61-66.]

Major Constituents:
Methyl chavicol
Cinnamyl acetate
[E. Joy Bowles, The Chemistry of Aromatherapeutic Oils (NSW, Australia: Allen & Unwin, 2003), 190.]

Safety Information: Various precautions abound for those with hypersensitive skin or with skin problems. Tisserand and Young recommend a dermal maximum of 1.75%. They indicate that it may inhibit blood clotthing and that it is contraindicated in pregnancy/breastfeeding, endometriosis and estrogen-dependent cancers. Avoid use with children under 5. Avoid use of the oil if it has oxidized. [Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 197.] Tisserand and Young include additional information that is recommended reading.

Important Notes: The essential oil information provided within the Essential Oil Properties & Profiles area 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 and give children only the gentlest oils at extremely low doses. 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.

Cover Own Safety Profiles for 400 Essential Oils and 206 Constituents:
Essential Oil Safety by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young

The second edition of Essential Oil Safety by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young is a 784-page powerhouse of information that is invaluable to the serious aromatherapy student, aromatherapy practitioner, health care professional, and everyone seriously interested in understanding individual essential oils, their constituents, usage guidelines, safety precautions and contraindications.
[Read a review...]
Cover The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils by Julia Lawless
Contains 160 detailed essential oil profiles complete with beautiful color photos.
[Read a review...]
Cover The Complete Aromatherapy & Essential Oils Handbook for Everyday Wellness
Includes brief profiles for approximately 85 essential oils, 11 hydrolats and 24 carrier oil/butters.
[Read a review...]
Cover Aromatherapy Science: A Guide for Healthcare Professionals
In addition to the eight main chapters contained within the book, Aromatherapy Science: A Guide for Healthcare Professionals also includes over 65 detailed essential oil monographs (profiles), spanning over 245 pages of the book (averaging 3.5 pages per profile).
[Read a review...]


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