From skincare products to hearty dishes, and the aroma of people’s go-to perfumes, you can find terpenes used in many everyday products to create and enhance their flavors and scents. Apart from that, terpenes can also have various positive effects on the body.
As the terpenes industry grows and their use in different applications becomes more widespread, it becomes more important for people to learn about these aromatic compounds to help them make wiser decisions when purchasing or working with terpenes.
Diving into this world can seem intimidating and overwhelming at first, especially since there are many kinds of terpenes out there, with each one having its unique and valuable characteristics. This is why understanding the different types and their benefits is vital. So, for today’s featured terpene, we’re taking a closer look at Geraniol.
Geraniol Terpene Profile
Geraniol is a terpene alcohol that is found in the essential oils of aromatic plants. If you’re into plants, this terpene’s name may remind you of one—geraniums—and that’s because geraniol originated from this useful and aromatic herb.
Besides geranium, other plants that contain geraniol include citronella, thyme, rose oil, basil, grapefruit, lemon, and coriander, among others. Fascinatingly, this terpene also occurs in honey bees. The flying insects produce geraniol through their scent glands, which acts as the bees’ mark to find their way to their hives.
Geraniol is a terpene that exudes a bright and fragrant smell, thanks to its rosy makeup and soft citrus notes. Because of this, and with the depth of aroma it possesses that can be used in various applications, geraniol is considered an essential compound for enhancing flavors and fragrances. It’s also why it’s a common terpene ingredient found in many consumer products.
Benefits of Geraniol
1. Reduces acne and other skin conditions
A study on geranium essential oil found that it contains properties, such as antibacterial, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic, that can help calm and decrease acne, dermatitis, skin irritation, and other skin conditions when used as a topical treatment. Other research also indicated that rose geranium essential oil could be a promising ingredient for anti-inflammatory medications.
2. Antibacterial and antifungal effects
Research on essential oil compounds testing for antimalarial, antimicrobial, antioxidant, and toxicity properties show that geraniol showed a wide spectrum of antimicrobial activity. This means geraniol can fight bacteria that are harmful to the health. Geraniol was also found to be one of the two essential oils that are the most effective against twelve fungi.
3. Insect repellent
Many terpene types contain components with repellent properties. The natural characteristics of geraniol oil make it a natural insecticidal and repellent against mosquitoes, household pests like cockroaches and fire ants, and house flies, among other insects and pests.
Commercially, people can find geraniol-based products used as natural repellents, such as geraniol candles, which help protect people from mosquitoes and sand flies—proven to be more effective than candles that contain citronella or linalool.
4. Helps with stress and anxiety
More and more people use aromatherapy to temporarily relieve mental concerns like stress and anxiety. Notes of floral or rosy smell, which geraniol produces, is a common essential oil choice to uplift one’s mood and reduce stress.
In addition, an interesting discovery found that women in labor who had inhaled geranium essential oil experienced a calming sensation effect, which helped reduce their anxiety during their first-stage labor.
5. Pain reduction
Besides mental problems, aromatherapy can also help treat physical problems like muscle pain or tension. Massage oils containing geraniol can help ease the aching feeling or discomfort brought by sore muscles and tissues, thanks to the terpene’s anti-inflammatory properties.
Women can use a few drops of geranium essential oils in the bath to help relax and reduce period pains since the oil can help calm the nervous system and improve blood circulation.
6. Treatment for insomnia
Another benefit of geraniol essential oils for therapeutic effects, its sweet rose-like aroma can soothe overwhelming emotions and relax the nerves to help people fall asleep naturally faster. It’s a natural alternative to taking sleeping pills. A few drops in a diffuser, in the bath before sleeping, or inhaling it before snoozing can work wonders.
Geraniol: Your Friendly Terpene
As you can see, geraniol is more than just an ingredient in perfumes, cosmetics, skincare products, and as an additive to food to boost their flavor and aroma. It offers a host of potential benefits for one’s health, from addressing mood swings to repelling mosquitoes and pain management.