For the Love of Lavender Essential Oil
Nothing says, “I love you,” like Lavender. Well, at least that is the case for our chief formulator, Kayla. Lavender—if there was such a thing as having a plant spirit, lavender would be Kayla’s. When she trained as an aromatherapist her love for lavender was solidified. It is the MacGyver of essential oils. It is complex, simple, and the go-to essential oil for countless issues.
Lavender played a huge role in the current history of aromatherapy. This excerpt from The Art, Science, and Business of Aromatherapy gives a quick look at that history.
“According to the myth, in 1928 Rene-Maurice Gattefosse rediscovered the healing properties of essential oils after an explosion severely burned his hand while working in his family’s perfumery business. He’d plunged his hand into the first liquid near him. That liquid turned out to be lavender essential oil which was being used for its fragrance and cosmetic purposes. He was amazed at how quickly his wound healed without infection or scarring. In the myth version of this story, it was the result of Gattefosse’s burn that turned his scientific attention to the medicinal properties of essential oils and their benefits for skin conditions.
“The story of Gattefosse’s famous burn is pivotal to the history of modern aromatherapy and its rebirth. But, like the story of the “fish that got away,” in which the fish keeps growing with each retelling of the story, the story of Rene Maurice Gattefosse has grown in such a way that it is told differently in nearly every aromatherapy book.
“However, when I was doing some fact checking, I discovered a reference stating that, according to Robert Tisserand, the famous telling is incorrect. I went to RobertTisserand.com and—lo and behold—the true story was right there on his site, “Gattefossé’s burn.” In reality, his treatment of his severe burn with lavender was deliberate (Robert Tisserand 2011).
“And according to Martin Watt, Gattefosse used deterpenated oils which were commonly used by perfumers because they have better solubility in alcohol than whole essential oils. Deterpenated oil is an essential oil that is terpene free by means of fractional distillation at a reduced pressure (Martin Watt).
“Although all accounts of his famous burn are in 1928, it actually happened in 1910. Gattefosse’s findings can be found in his 1937 book, Aromathérapie, along with the story of the famous burn that happened in his laboratory. It was well received by others who went on to do their own research. It was originally written in French and wasn’t published in English until 1993.
In Gattefosse’s Aromathérapie, he said, “The external application of small quantities of essences rapidly stops the spread of gangrenous sores. In my personal experience, after a laboratory explosion covered me with burning substances, which I extinguished by rolling on a grassy lawn, both my hands were covered with a rapidly developing gas gangrene. Just one rinse with lavender essence stopped ‘the gasification of the tissue.’ This treatment was followed by profuse sweating, and healing began the next day (July 1910)” (Gattefosse 1937).
“Gas gangrene is a serious bacterial infection which produces gases within the tissues that are gangrene, or dead. It is a very deadly form of gangrene and, in his time, would have most likely been fatal. The bacterium that causes gas gangrene can be found in soil. I agree with Tisserand’s belief that Gattefosse probably came into contact with the bacterium when he extinguished the burning substances “by rolling on a grassy lawn.” Knowing the real story makes me even more impressed with the power of lavender. I have, on many occasions, poured lavender onto burns with amazing results. I have never witnessed the results of it on gas gangrene.” from The Art, Science and Business of Aromatherapy.
At Ology Essentials Labs, we use lavender in almost every single one of our essential oil blends because we believe its power.
The best lavender in the world is grown in the high altitude of the French Alps, and that is exactly where we source our luxurious lavender. This pure unadulterated lavender has a very characteristic, sweet, and floral aroma. The growing conditions of the high altitude French Alps produce lavender with a higher ester content compared to lavenders cultivated at lower altitudes. In aromatherapy esters are known for being gentle on the skin as well as being balancing, calming, and gentle.
You can also find this lavender essential oil featured in our ready-to-label lotions and bath bombs! Our Lavender Lotion features luxurious oils, extracts and hyaluronic acid, and it is both moisturizing and hydrating! Once you lather this lovely lotion on, your body and mind will certainly be feeling balanced and at peace. And our Lavender Bath Bomb is the best way to wind down at the end of the day. With luxurious butters and salts and the high quality French Lavender, you will be feeling relaxed in no time. Just don’t plan on doing anything after your bath, because you will just want to chill.
More products featuring only lavender coming soon – because duh!