What is Vanilla Essential Oil?


The Vanilla essential oil comes from the vanilla plant, also known as Vanilla planifolia, a type of orchid with yellow-green and vines blossoms that yield brown pods. The plant is native to Mexico and Central America, although you may find it worldwide. Vanilla is a flavoring ingredient derived from any cured bean of the Vanilla genus. The solvent extraction of a material derived from fermented vanilla beans yields the essential oil of vanilla. These beans are derived from any vanilla plant native to Mexico and nearby countries and known scientifically as Vanilla Planifolia. The majority of tastes, such as vanilla, are not made from real vanilla. Hydrocarbons are used to make them.

Major constituents:

Vanillin is the primary chemical ingredient of vanilla oil, with amounts of caproic acid, piperonal, and eugenol also present. Vanilla’s wonderful flavor and health benefits are due to vanillin and piperonal compounds. Vanilla oil includes almost 150 different smells, and most of them are only present in trace amounts. It contains compounds such as caproic acid, vanillyl ethyl ether, p-hydroxybenzaldehyde, and acetic acid.

How it’s made:

It’s vital to note that it is quite unlikely to get vanilla oil 100 percent pure nowadays due to its high cost. The majority of commercially available inexpensive vanilla oils are either excessively processed or include many synthetic ingredients and are sadly mislabeled as the real thing by unscrupulous producers. Unlike various essential oils, Vanilla oil cannot be produced using steam distillation due to its fragile structure.

The vanilla essential oil comes in three varieties:

Vanilla carbon dioxide (CO2): Vanilla pods get placed in a stainless-steel container with CO2 gas poured into it. After then, the air within the chamber gets compressed. CO2 liquefies under such circumstances, forming a supercritical fluid that helps extract the oil from the pods. Finally, the CO2 decomposes into gas and leaves behind the vanilla oil.

Absolute Vanilla: Absolute vanilla is produced through specific solvent extraction, which begins with a solvent that is non-polar like benzene and ends with a polar solvent like ethanol.

Vanilla oleoresin: Solvent extraction of macerated beans produces vanilla oleoresin, a semi-solid concentrate. Vanilla oleoresin is only a marketing phrase because the fluid extract is a resinoid derived through vanilla pods rather than an oleoresin.

Each variety is said to be superior to the other in terms of quality and purity. But keep in mind that vanilla oil has to be processed to its greatest extent, making it more impure and high-quality. Vanilla oil’s unique scent and flavor are frequently lost throughout these operations.

What are the benefits of Vanilla essential oil?

Contains antioxidant properties

Vanilla essential oil’s antioxidant properties may help to neutralize free radicals and safeguard your body from infections as well as wear and tear. It may also help restore any harm that has already been inflicted on your body. Doctors in ancient Africa utilized vanilla to treat gastrointestinal ailments. It was utilized to cure stomach ailments and aphrodisiac and poisoning by European healers in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

It might have antimutagenic qualities.

Vanillin has possible antimutagenic qualities, as per a study published in Cellular Longevity and Oxidative Medicine, and it may decrease the mutations in colon cancer cells. More research is needed to determine its curative capacity in preventing and treating cancer.


More than 17 million people in the US struggle with depression, a deadly mental disease. Although it is incurable, conventional practices like healthy eating, exercise, and meditation can assist. Essential oils, on the other hand, are useful in aromatherapy. At 100 kg/mg, vanilla showed possible antidepressant effects in animal research published in the Indian Journal of Pharmacology. Vanilla’s relaxing characteristics can help to improve one’s mood by reducing stress, anger, impatience, and tension.

Works as a Febrifuge

The anti-infective properties of this essential oil may help to lower fever. Components of vanilla essential oil might have anti-infective properties. It is also called an antiphlogistic since, as a sedative, it might lessen inflammation.

Might be Antimutagenic

Vanillin has possible antimutagenic qualities, as per a study published in Cellular Longevity and Oxidative Medicine, and it may decrease the mutations in cancer cells. More research is needed to determine its therapeutic capacity in cancer therapy and prevention.

Controls blood pressure

The calming properties of vanilla essential oil reduce blood pressure naturally by soothing the mind and body. When pressure builds up in the blood vessels and arteries and becomes extremely high, the artery wall becomes deformed, putting additional strain on your heart. A heart attack, diabetes, or stroke can all be caused by increased blood pressure.

Stress is a key contributor to high blood pressure, and vanilla essential oil can help decrease blood pressure by soothing the mind and muscles. Vanilla oil can also assist you to sleep better, which is yet another simple technique to decrease blood pressure. Since it functions as an anti-inflammatory, vanilla oil is a natural cure for elevated blood pressure.

Reduces PMS symptoms

Vanilla oil regulates menstruation and reduces PMS symptoms by activating estrogen levels. More than 75 percent of menstruating women suffer PMS symptoms, & hormone stability is the key factor that defines these symptoms. Typical PMS symptoms are bloating, fatigue, mood shifts, skin troubles, cramps, and breast tenderness.

Because it stimulates or regulates hormone levels and manages stress, the vanilla essential oil is a natural cure for cramps and PMS, making your mind and body calm. Vanilla essential oil is a relaxant, so the body isn’t hypersensitive when dealing with PMS symptoms; rather, it’s calm, and the signs are reduced.

How to use Vanilla Essential Oil

Aromatic description

The aroma of vanilla essential oil could be described as comforting, sweet, complex, and warm. It mixes well with many fragrances such as spicy, sweet, clean, and floral.

Strength of initial aroma

The initial aroma of vanilla essential oil is extremely sweet and has a rich vanilla scent.  

Blending and uses:

In a carrier oil or cream

Unlike other essential oils, vanilla essential oil does not fully blend with the carrier oil. However. Vanilla oleoresin may be utilized topically as well as aromatically. Internal use is not recommended. Apply 1-2 drops to the chest, stomach, and neck to relieve anxiety.

In a diffuser

When Vanilla essential oil is used in a diffuser, it can help you relax your mind, and hence people usually use it before going to bed for good sleep. Add vanilla essential oil to a DIY perfume spray for a delightful blast of smell. Diffuse Vanilla essential oil to build a comfortable and pleasant environment in your house. You may use vanilla in a night sleeping spray to help you get a good sleep at night.

Can you ingest vanilla essential oil?

Vanilla is generally safe to consume, but there are some possible adverse effects. If you’re going to prepare an infusion with vanilla pods or beans and a carrier oil, be certain it’s a food-safe carrier oil (such as coconut oil).

Cautions, safety, and side effects of vanilla essential oil

It is deemed safe for topical and aromatic use when diluted with any carrier oil. One should not apply raw vanilla essential oil straight to the skin. Similarly, unless edible vanilla extract is available in supermarkets, it’s not suitable for human consumption. Pregnant ladies or those who are breastfeeding, as well as children, should avoid using essential oils. Always test this oil on a small patch of sensitive skin before applying it to bigger sections of your body. In addition, if it irritates, stop using it. Keep in mind that this oil is pricey. If you locate anything for a much lesser price, it very certainly contains synthetic ingredients or several other, less hazardous components. Some negative effects of taking vanilla oil are inflammation, edema, or irritation. Starting with tiny dosages and working your way forward is a smart idea. If you’re going to utilize vanilla essential oil on the skin, start with a tiny area.

Is vanilla essential oil safe during pregnancy?

Many pregnant women seek natural cures to minimize using drugs or consuming anything poisonous on their bodies and in their food. Vanilla essential oil (EOs) can assist with various pregnancy symptoms, pains, and even extreme discomfort in certain situations but should not be taken while nursing or during pregnancy. Get to know which essential oils are acceptable for your child before using your favorite. Some components of Vanilla essential oil may flow into the circulation, making their way to breastmilk during nursing or the placenta, where they might affect the growing child and its growth, much as Vanilla essential oil actives can travel through the skin layers.

Does vanilla essential oil stain?

A vanilla essential oil that is pure does not stain. Because the oil is volatile, it evaporates without forming a grease mark on garments or fibers, unlike carrier oil. 

Is vanilla essential oil toxic?

There is no identified toxicity associated with it. This, however, may not stand true for every type of vanilla essential oil now on the market. You should use vanilla products made in laboratories and offer pure Vanilla essential oil by producers with caution. Furthermore, you could use certain Vanilla oils alongside tonga beans that include coumarin, a toxic ingredient that is prohibited in meals.

What substitutes are there?

Vanilla is a well-known smell that you may find in various lotions, candles, and perfumes. Vanilla-scented essential oils are not as prevalent as peppermint-scented or lavender essential oils, but they do exist. Several vanilla essential oil substitutes achieve a comparable scent by combining various substances. Vanilla bean essence works well as a foundation note since it gives a scent more depth. 

Balsam of Peru Essential Oil

Balsam of Peru is a part of the Fabaceae plant, known for producing filtered essential oil from the tree’s resin. This essential oil has a sweet, rich aroma similar to vanilla even though it consists of benzyl benzoate, cinnamic acid, and benzyl cinnamate. This oil’s consistency is dense and gives a vanilla-like scent to the aromatic blend.

Benzoin Absolute

Steam distillation of Styrax officinalis leaves yields benzoin. Since its smell is similar to vanilla without becoming too overwhelming, it is one of the best alternatives. Because of its capacity to add woody aspects to scents, benzoin is often utilized in perfumery. Its major component is styrene and thus has a spicy, warm aroma similar to cinnamon.

What to look for when choosing vanilla essential oil?

One must check if the essential oil is of high quality or not, and for that, he must have a strong sense of smell. Moreover, the Latin and common name of the plant used in the production of the vanilla essential oil must be written on the label. In addition to this, the place from where it is sourced should be explicitly mentioned on the label. 

Bottom line

As evidenced, vanilla essential oil appears to be useful for more than simply ice cream! Though the word “vanilla” conjures up images of something dull or unappealing, this intriguing plant offers a slew of wellness and health advantages. Perhaps this is why it is one of the world’s extremely beloved smells and contains so many good associations.

Use vanilla essential oil topically by mixing it with any carrier oil or perfumed in handy aromatherapy, room, or bath diffuser to include it in your everyday routine.

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