What is Rosemary Essential Oil?

Article Details
  • Written By: Jan Hill
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 16 June 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
    Conjecture Corporation
  • Print this Article

Rosemary essential oil refers to a liquid that is distilled from the stem and leaves of the rosemary plant. It is generally derived by using steam or water and is highly concentrated. It has long been used in burning incense during religious ceremonies and as an herbal medicine. Some herbalists believe that rosemary essential oil may be able to stimulate hair growth, reduce pain and improve mental capability.

The rosemary plant is also known as Rosmarinus Officinalis. It belongs to the mint family, and its oil may have been used centuries ago in Roman religious ceremonies. The ancient Egyptians commonly used rosemary oil for incense. A 16th century physician known as Paracelsus believed that rosemary essential oil could increase strength in the body and heal the brain, liver and heart.

Rosemary essential oil is commonly diluted with a "carrier oil" such as almond oil or grape seed oil, which may provide for greater absorption into the skin. It is meant to be used externally and is not to be ingested—it is "volatile" in nature and may increase vomiting. Rosemary essential oil should typically not be used by pregnant women, as its overuse may induce miscarriage and adversely affect the fetus.


Rosemary essential oil is used in hair care products because it is thought that it stimulates the hair follicles and induces hair growth. It may also slow down hair loss and the premature graying of the hair. Rosemary oil can also be beneficial for those with dry or flaky scalps and is sometimes used in conjunction with scalp massage.

Some experts believe that rosemary essential oil may reduce headache pain, muscle stiffness and soreness and even relieve the symptoms of arthritis. When rosemary oil is used for pain relief, it is usually massaged into the affected area. It may also be put into a bath so that its vapors can be absorbed or breathed into the body to help relieve respiratory problems related to colds, congestion and asthma.

Rosemary essential oil may also be useful as a brain tonic. It is sometimes used by students who are preparing for exams because it may boost concentration and help them to study more efficiently. It may also be effective in reducing stress and lessening forgetfulness. It has also been found to have antioxidant properties and the ability to kill bacteria that is harmful to the body.



Discuss this Article

Post your comments

Post Anonymously


forgot password?