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Healing Properties of Patchouli Oil

Updated on December 29, 2015

Patchouli Plant

Patchouli Soap

A little Patchouli history

Many can’t stand the smell of Patchouli while others are in absolute love with it. I for one am not a huge fan but do not mind Patchouli when it is blended with other oils such as lavender, sandalwood, and frankincense. Patchouli actually has many health benefits, and is great for the skin as well.

Patchouli was first recognized for its primary use as an insecticide during ancient times to keep insects away from garments. During the 18th and 19th centuries silk traders used Patchouli leaves to protect their silks from moths laying their eggs on them as they traveled from village to village.

Patchouli also known as (Pogostemon cablin) comes from the mint family and originates from Southeast Asia. This perennial will grow as high as 3 ft tall with a strong stem and hairy leaves, bearing a pink white flower.

The essential oil Patchouli is extracted from this plant through steam distillation, and can be harvested two to three times a year. Unlike other oils Patchouli oil is better with age, and blends well with other oils, which has made it very popular in the perfumery industry as a fixative. Patchouli slows down evaporation of the more volatile oils so that their aroma is released over a longer period of time.

A Few Medicinal Properties of Patchouli

Anti Depressant: Patchouli is known to help treat depression, reduce stress, uplift moods and relax tension.

Anti Phlogistic or Anti- inflammatory: Counters inflammation and fevers.

Anti Septic: Protects wounds from infections, and in some Asian countries Patchouli is used for treating venomous snake bites.

Astringent: The astringency in Patchouli is believed to help stop hemorrhage by contracting the blood vessels. Astringent properties induce contractions in muscles, nerves and skin. This can also help in preventing hair loss, sagging of skin and loosening of muscles.

Cicatrisant: Patchouli oil is known to have a cicatrisant property which means it has the ability to help heal cuts and wound and speed up the fading of their scars as well. Other scars that this has been proven to be effective on are marks left from boils, acne, pox, and measles.

Cytophylactic: Helps regenerate new skin cells, keeping the skin looking young and vibrant

Deodorant: Effectively keeps body odor away with its strong aroma. Recommended to be used in dilution.

Diuretic: Increases the frequency and quantity of urine. This helps remove toxins from the body as well as lose weight, lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and increase appetite.

Fungicide: Inhibits fungal growth and infections. Patchouli is known for effectively treating athlete’s foot.

Patchouli- Love it or hate it.

Patchouli is one of those scents that you either love or hate. This scent was once a very popular scent in the 60’s and 70’s and is still referred to today as the hippie scent having a pungent, musty, earthy smell to it. Though Patchouli really took its claim to fame during the hippie era, it has a very long track record of being used for cosmetics and medicinal purposes.

The Chinese have been using Patchouli for medicinal purposes since AD 420-589 which is the time span believed that this plant was first introduced to China. Patchouli was used internally as well as externally to treat colds, nausea, diarrhea, dermatitis, abdominal pain, vomiting, fever, headaches, and to stimulate appetite.

Patchouli skin benefits

Patchouli has gained much recognition in the perfumery industry as well as aromatherapy, but has also gained popularity in the skincare industry. You can find Patchouli in many soaps, lotions, shampoos, wrinkle creams, and message oils to name a few, which offer therapeutic value to the skin.

Patchouli has cytophyactic properties which means it has the ability to help regenerate new skin cells keeping the skin looking young and vibrant. Patchouli is also recognized for treating inflammatory skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis, and is also said to effectively treat dandruff, acne, vanish scares and reduce varicose veins.

Patchouli has anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties in which gives Patchouli many of its amazing healing abilities.

The smell of Patchouli may bring back memories of the past that are either good or bad. Some have fallen in love with this scent while others despise it. Whether you love or hate the smell of Patchouli there is no denying of its many wonderful healthy benefits which would explain its very long history of use.

Remember to always consult with a clinical herbalist or qualified healthcare practitioner before treating yourself with natural and herbal remedies. All information mentioned in this hub is for general information and should not be considered as medical advice or consultation. Always contact a reputable healthcare practitioner if medical care is needed.

Are you a Patchouli lover or hater?

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Patchouli Essential Oil


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    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from NY

      Thanks Pamela N Red for the read and comment.Sunflower Farmer's Market sounds like fun, bet you could find plenty of patchouli there!

    • Pamela N Red profile image

      Pamela N Red 

      8 years ago from Oklahoma

      I have always loved patchouli maybe because I'm a bit of a hippie. I burn the incense, have hand made soaps and my daughter loves the bath salts. I get the last two at Sunflower Farmer's Market and the incense from a hippie store. lol

    • toknowinfo profile image


      9 years ago

      Thanks for increasing my knowledge about patchouli oil. Interesting and well done hub.

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from NY

      ChristineVianello, Never heard of Patchouli before? I would have to say that your not really missing out , as I am not a big fan of the fragrance, but very impressed with all it's other wonderful features. Thanks for stopping by.

    • ChristineVianello profile image


      9 years ago from Philadelphia

      Ha very interesting, I never heard of Patchouli oil. Yes, we do learn something new everyday!

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from NY

      prasetio30, isn't HubPages great! We can come here everyday and learn new things like the healing properties of Patchouli oil. So glad you checked this hub out my friend. God Bless

    • prasetio30 profile image


      9 years ago from malang-indonesia

      I never knew about Patchouli Oil until I read this hub. Thanks for writing this. I liked your new profile picture. Good work, my friend. GOd bless you!


    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from NY

      I never have been very fond of the smell of patchouli but as I began doing this study I found myself loving this oil as well, and kinda want to give it another go. Thanks so much for stopping by Katie, glad you enjoyed learning about Patchouli, I'm with you nature does provide everything we need, just wait to read my next hub! I think you will be very impressed with my next topic. Stayed tuned.

    • katiem2 profile image

      Katie McMurray 

      9 years ago from Westerville

      Well I love patchouli oil now that you've turned me on to all its amazing properties and helpful benefits. You know I do love frankincense, so toss in a bit of this and that and I'm game. I love indulging in the amazing oils of mother earth. We really do have everything we need growing right here don't we? Loved learning about the properties of Patchouli oil. :) Katie

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from NY

      Chatkath, its so funny to me how one scent is so much associated to an era in time. Patchouli is the "hippie scent", So glad you enjoyed this hub and that Patchouli brings back good memories for you.

      Thanks for commenting.

    • Chatkath profile image


      9 years ago from California

      Good hub-

      Patchouli only reminds me of my Hippie phase - I had no idea that it was so beneficial. I love the smell of it, perhaps because of the memories, I must get some more!

      Thanks for sharing!

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from NY

      Bethany, Yes Patchouli is like Tea Tree oil in the way that they share many of the same benefits, but promise you smell nothing alike. Thanks for stopping buy and commenting.

    • profile image

      Bethany Culpepper 

      9 years ago

      Very interesting...know that I know what it is, I'll have to look for it. Sounds sort of like Tea Tree Oil - good for a lot of things.

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from NY

      cheapsk8chick, so glad you enjoyed this hub on Patchouli. Thanks so much for commenting and sharing your Patchouli memories they are great!

      I love your suggestion on outlining the difference between hand lotion bars and jars, and will do as you ask, so be on the look out -lol. Thanks again.

    • cheapsk8chick profile image


      9 years ago

      I had no idea that patchouli had any healing properties! Your hub is awesome and dead-on! I *heart* patchouli and discovered that I do back in my early twenties when I smelled some and it took me immediately back to my childhood. My mother wore a patchouli-based perfume, and my father burned a lot of patchouli incense. I soak beads in patchouli oil and hang in the car, and both of my cold-weather perfumes are patchouli based. I will start looking for more products with patchouli now that I know they exist. Speaking of, you should write a hub outlining the difference between hand lotion bars and hand lotion jars!

    • rpalulis profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from NY

      Thanks Darlene, I have been wanting to research Patchouli for some time now. We have lots of customers who love Patchouli and will wipe us out of our Patchouli lavender soap bars in minutes at some markets. I never have been very fond of the smell but knew that it had a medicinal history. Funny that it started out as an insect repellent.

      Thanks for stopping by Darlene hope all is well.

    • Darlene Sabella profile image

      Darlene Sabella 

      9 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

      What an interesting hub, I never heard of this plant, but I am never sure of my memories from my hippie days lol I really enjoyed the video it gave me a clear understand how a plant is distilled, very cool. This is an excellent hub, well written and awesome and I vote this up up up Love & peace darski


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