Limited Edition Essential Oils

Defining the quality of essential oils

Whether for professional or home aromatherapy use, essential oils of the highest quality should be used.

How do we define the quality of essential oils? The main challenge is that essential oils are not just used for aromatherapy purposes. Essential oils are extensively used in:

  • food flavouring
  • perfumery and fragrances
  • pharmaceutical preparations
  • chemical manufacturing

Each of these industries has developed its own set of criteria for defining the quality of an essential oil. It has been suggested that the quality of an essential oil should be based on knowing whether an essential oil is going to work in a therapeutic way. This makes a lot of sense but it does open the door to a new set of challenges. What defines the therapeutic activity of an essential oil? If we strictly follow this guideline, we may be required to adopt the standards adopted by some of the pharmacopoeias such as the British Pharmacopoeia, which means that many of the essential oils may need to be blended or rectified in order to comply with the pharmacopoeia standards.

Therefore, it is not surprising that some essential oil companies have decided to establish their own internal standards such as ‘therapeutic grade’. Some in the industry suggest that this term is misleading, but claim it is a failure of the aromatherapy essential oil trading associations to issue guidelines for essential oils that has led to this situation.

I agree with Harris who suggests that the ideal definition of quality for essential oils in aromatherapy should be: (1) preferably but not necessarily organically cultivated, and (2) that is supplied with the full chemical analysis of its constituents1.

Holmes also suggests that essential oil users often ignore the documented evidence provided in certificates of analysis such as the results of simple analytical tests (e.g. specific gravity, refractive index and optical rotation).2 Even the most important sensory-based method of organoleptic examination is often overlooked.

I have always been passionate about sourcing the highest quality essential oils. Thirty years of experience as an aromatherapist, educator and supplier of essential oils has helped establish Perfect Potion as the leading specialist in its field. It is, therefore, very exciting for us to launch a new platform to help you understand our essential oils.

By simply going to the link below and typing in the batch number of the essential oil you have purchased from Perfect Potion, you can access the Certificate of Analysis (C of A) of that batch of essential oil.

http://www.perfectpotion.com.au/news/certificates/

The C of A gives you vital information regarding the correct identification of the oil – the botanical name, the country of origin, clearly identifying if it is certified organic and the method of extraction.

It also describes the appearance and organoleptic qualities of the oil as well as the specific gravity and refractive index. These analytical tests can be very useful to identify if the oil has been adulterated.

We also include a detailed chemical composition of the essential oil. For those who have studied essential oil chemistry, this will give you a good indication of the potential therapeutic qualities of the oil. In future blogs, I will provide more information on how to interpret the chemical composition of the essential oils.

 

 

Perfect Potion limited-edition essential oils

Occasionally, I come across essential oils that leave you breathless because they epitomise the flawless beauty of nature. Our most recent batches of certified organic Roman chamomile, clary sage, Bourbon geranium, neroli, vetiver and ylang ylang complete are such oils. While all of our essential oils are certified organic and of such discerning quality, these oils are so unique that I have decided to make them part of a limited-edition range.

It is no wonder that Fischer-Rizzi once described essential oils as heavenly scents that touch your heart, making you keenly aware of the beauty that surrounds you and opening the door to your soul.

Roman chamomile

This batch of Roman chamomile is so rich in esters. Esters provide the essential oil with a delightful fruity aroma, which is so soothing and relaxing. I have not smelt Roman chamomile that is so fruity and sweet for so long.

Botanical name Anthemis nobilis

Country of origin Morocco

Status ACO certified organic

Organoleptic description – This Roman chamomile oil is a pale yellow mobile liquid with a very diffusive aroma with little tenacity. It is a top note. This Roman chamomile oil has a sweet fruity and apple-like top note, a sweet and herbaceous body while its dryout is herbaceous and dry.

Chemical composition – Isobutyl isobutyrate 4.5%, isobutyl methacrylate 2.3%, α-pinene 6.45%, β-pinene 0.61%, isobutyl methyl butyrate 1.45%, isobutyl isovalerate 0.19%, isoamyl isobutyrate 0.63%, 2-methyl butylisobutyrate 3.01%, p-cymene 0.22%, isobutyrate angelate 12.65%, methyl allyl angelate 9.05%, butyl angelate 0.47%, trans pinocarveol 8.76%, methyl butyl angelate 4.58%, isoamyl angelate 8.28%, pinocarvone 2.74%, borneol 0.34%, myrtenal 1.04%, methyl amyl angelate 10.08%, germacrene D 0.52%.

Limited edition – 300

Size – 2 mL

Price – $49.95

Clary sage

There is such a pleasant, fresh, warm aroma to this batch of clary sage oil. It has the most euphoric and uplifting effect that I have ever experienced from clary sage.

Botanical name – Salvia sclarea

Country of origin – France

Status – ACO certified organic

Organoleptic description – This clary sage oil is a pale yellow liquid with a very diffusive aroma. It is regarded as a middle note. It has a fresh, fruity and amber-like top note, a floral and herbaceous body while its dryout is balsamic, dry and woody.

Chemical composition – α-pinene 0.1%, β-pinene 0.14%, β-myrcene 0.73%, limonene 0.3%, cis-β ocimene 0.31%, trans-β ocimene 0.5%, linalool 17.09%, α-terpineol 1.4%, nerol 0.29%, geraniol 0.76%, linalyl acetate 67.44%, neryl acetate 0.48%, β-caryophyllene 1.28%, germacrene D 2.38%, sclareol 0.82%.

Limited edition – 500

Size – 5 mL

Price – $34.95

Geranium, Bourbon

Geranium from Madagascar is considered the finest quality geranium and is also known as rose geranium oil. I am often asked “Why don’t we stock rose geranium?” This is a trade name that has no real meaning. I prefer to use the technical name for the oil, but if there were a rose geranium, this would be it.

This batch of Bourbon geranium oil has the most delightful, sweet, rosy and herbaceous aroma.

Botanical name – Pelargonium graveolens

Country of origin – Madagascar

Status – ACO certified organic

Organoleptic description – This batch of Bourbon geranium is green-olive coloured oil with a powerful diffusive aroma. It is referred to as a middle note.  It has a fresh, green and leafy top note, with a rosy, minty and herbaceous body, while the dryout is sweet and herbaceous.

Chemical composition – limonene 0.26%, linalool 4.28%, cis-rose oxide 0.78%, trans-rose oxide 0.33%, citronellal 0.09%, menthone 1.45%, isomenthone 6.4%, α-terpineol 0.23%, citronellol 22.33%, geraniol 15.28%, geranial 1.03%, citronellyl formate 10.13%, geranyl formate 6.57%, geranyl acetate 0.36%, neryl acetate 0.02%, β-bourbonene 1.13%, guaia-6,9-diene 8.26%, α-humulene 1.55%, germacrene D 1.14%, geranyl isobutyrate 1.09%, geranyl tiglate 1.51%.

Limited edition – 500

Size – 5 mL

Price – $29.95

Neroli

When I first inhaled this batch of neroli, I felt like I was walking on sunshine – it sends a tingle down my spine! The scent of this batch of neroli oil is so refreshingly divine – it rejuvenates and awakens the soul.

Botanical name – Citrus aurantium var. amara

Country of origin – Morocco

Status – ACO certified organic

Organoleptic description – This neroli oil is a pale yellow liquid with a light floral aroma with little tenacity. It is referred to as a top note. This neroli oil has a refreshing light, floral top note with a sweet, floral, herbaceous green body and a pleasant floral dryout.

Chemical composition – α-pinene 0.59%, sabinene 0.59%, β-pinene 8.08%, β-myrcene 2.35%, α-terpinene 0.21%, limonene 16.98%, linalool 38.4%, α—terpineol 5.13%, nerol 1.27%, geraniol 3.45%, indole 0.16%, methyl anthranilate 0.24%, neryl acetate 1.55%, geranyl acetate 3.13%, β-caryophyllene 0.72%, α-farnesene 0.23%, nerolidol 2.17%, trans-farnesol 1.42%.

Limited edition – 200

Size – 2 mL

Price – $89.95

Vetiver, Bourbon

When I came across this batch of vetiver, I almost cried. It took me right back to my childhood memories growing up on the farm. It has such a lush, rich earthy sweet aroma. For such an earthy oil, this was so surprisingly refreshing and rejuvenating.

Vetiver is one of the most chemically complex of all essential oils. This batch of Bourbon vetiver oil is very rich in sesquiterpene compounds, giving the oil its intensity, depth and complexity, reminiscent of roots and wet soil.

Botanical name – Vetiveria zizanioides

Country of origin – Madagascar

Status – ACO certified organic

Organoleptic description – This batch of Bourbon vetiver is an amber to brownish coloured viscous liquid. It is referred to as a base note. This vetiver oil has a sweet, heavy and woody top note, with an earthy and woody body while there is no change in its dryout.

Chemical composition – isoeugenol 0.49%, nootkatene 0.63%, γ-vetivenene 3.09%, α-calacorene 0.72%, β-vetivenene 3.09%, vetiselinenol 1.85%, khusimol 8.19%, isovalencenol 1.35%, β-vetivone 4.11%, α-vetivone 5.36%.

Limited edition – 300

Size – 5 mL

Price – $34.95

Ylang ylang complete

Now those of you who have attended my classes will know my signature essential oil – yes, it is ylang ylang. Even those who are not such big fans of the intoxicating and rich floral aroma of ylang ylang will fall under the spell of this batch of ylang ylang complete.

This batch of ylang ylang complete oil has a scent that is heavenly, sweet and floral. It epitomises the character of ylang ylang that is charismatic and sensual.

Botanical name – Cananga odorata

Country of origin – Madagascar

Status – ACO certified organic

Organoleptic description – Ylang ylang complete is a yellow somewhat oily liquid with a powerful, intense aroma. It is referred to as a middle note. It has a powerful, intense, sweet and floral top note, followed by a rich, slightly medicinal and floral body while its dryout is pleasant, soft and powdery floral.

Chemical composition

α-pinene 0.2%, camphene 0.32%, methyl-p-cresol 2.9%, methyl benzoate 1.69%, linalool 8.88%, benzyl acetate 1.53%, geraniol 1.35%, linalyl acetate 0.02%, eugenol 0.46%, α-cubebene 0.12%, geranyl acetate 7.84%, methyl eugenol 0.03%, β-caryophyllene 14.61%, farnesol 1.21%, benzyl benzoate 5.47%, benzyl salicylate 1.55%.

Limited edition – 500

Size – 5 mL

Price – $27.95


References

1.Holmes P. Aromatica: a clinical guide to essential oil therapeutics – Vol. I. Singing Dragon, London 2016. 

2. Harris B. Editorial. International Journal of Aromatherapy, 2006; 16(2):55.