A colourless to pale yellow oil with a strong, herbaceous fragrance produced by steam distillation of the leaves of the thyme shrub.
The first distillation of the herb produces Red Thyme oil which is more potent but has more contraindications and can cause skin irritations. The Red Thyme is distilled a second time resulting in White Thyme oil.
Thymus Vulgaris Leaf Oil
According to the Cosmetic Ingredient Database (Cosing), the functions of Thyme, White Essential Oil are:
Antimicrobial, Antioxidant, Preservative
To view more information, visit the Cosing Database here.
A very effective antifungal as well as being antibacterial, so include it in foot creams and gels.
A powerful antimicrobial that is effective against Propionibacterium Acnes which is a bacterium which causes acne. The oil is safe to use on the skin in small amounts, so add it to products for acne prone skin and other skin problems.
It helps to repair the damage of scars and other skin marks.
Has a very effective deodorant effect, so include it in cream and lotion deodorants as well as gel roll ons.
Excellent in shower gels and bath products and gives a clean, fresh aroma.
As it is anti inflammatory, it is ideal to use in hand creams for gardeners or those who have rheumaticky type hands and joints.
Traditionally, thyme oil has a reputation for preventing hair loss. This really depends on what the cause of the hair loss is but it is still a great oil to add to shampoos and conditioners.
Excellent for keeping mosquitoes, flies and other insects at bay.
As a diuretic, it helps to increase detoxification so can be used for cleaning wraps and spa treatments.
Very soothing for aching muscles and joint pains in a massage blend or a balm. It simulates the body so is invigorating for tiredness and exhaustion.
It relaxes the chest muscles so is excellent to use in a nebuliser or oil burner in a room to help breath deeper.
Combine with Plai for analgesic balms and massage lotions.
Some individuals with sensitive skin may react if used in excess.
As an emmenagogue, it should not be used during pregnancy.
Do not use on young children and babies.
Traditional Aromatherapy Uses
Traditionally used by qualified aromatherapists for skin and scalp complaints. It needed to be used with care as the carvacrol and thymol content increase the total phenol levels which can be irritating to some people’s skin.
Traditionally, thyme oil was one of the major disinfectants used by gardeners. When seed trays and greenhouses need to be cleaned out prior to the new planting season, Jeyes fluid was diluted down (which included thyme oil) and sprayed round the greenhouse. Also excellent for cleaning smelly drains.
Thyme oil was also added to soaps during the two World Wars to use in field hospitals to reduce the rate of cross contamination and infections.
In the 19th century, nurses would soak bandages in thyme infused water to help speed wound healing and keep infections away.
Widely used in mouthwashes and gargles.