Geranium Essential Oil

Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens) is a perennial shrub that is endemic to Southern Africa, from which many different varieties have been created over the years. 

Pelargonium graveolens has small pink flowers with pointy leaves. The essential oil is extracted through a steam distillation of the stems and leaves only. The aroma can vary somewhat as the harvest of young green leaves will result in a lemony scent, whereas if older leaves are harvested with a different colour, the scent will resemble that of a rose.

The plants originated from South Africa, as well as Reunion, Madagascar, Egypt and Morocco and were introduced to European countries such as Italy, Spain and France in the 17th century.

There are about 700 different varieties of the plant, yet only 10 supply essential oil in viable quantities, as the normal garden geranium produce far too little oil for extraction.

In early times geraniums were planted around the house to keep evil sprits at bay

Geranium oil is often compared to the rose essential oil because they share almost the same therapeutic traits as well as the aroma. The leaves and stalks are used for extraction, and the oil is obtained through steam distillation. The resultant oil is mostly without colour, but can have a slight light green colour to it.

Very popular in aromatherapy and natural skin remedies, it contains about 67 beneficial compounds:

  • Main ones - citronellol (26.7 percent) and geraniol (13.4 percent). 
  • Others include - Nerol (8.7 percent), Citronellyl formate (7.1 percent), Isomenthone (6.3 percent), Linalool (5.2 percent)

Benefits of geranium essential oil include:

  • Fragrant scent: Besides the wonderful rose fragrance, it also helps combat body odour due to its antibacterial action.
  • Helps in healing or fading scars and the removal of dark spots: by improving blood circulation just below the surface of the skin and promoting an equal distribution of melanin. This also helps with poor circulation and skin complaints such as bruises, broken capillaries, and burns. 
  • Beneficial in the treatment of acne, dermatitis and other skin diseases
  • Astringent: soothing, refreshing and relaxing, it helps prevent skin problems like sagging and wrinkling, and helps give your muscles a toned appearance.
  • Antibacterial, anti-fungal, and antioxidant properties: Prevents bacterial infections and boosts immune systems. 
  • Helps healing of wounds by triggering blood clotting, which also stops toxins from reaching your bloodstream through open wounds.

Possible Side Effects

Because Geranium is non-toxic, non-irritant, and non-sensitising, it is not known to cause any side effects.