Cinnamon Bark EO Part 1 covered the various intricacies of finding and buying the essential oil, a brief lesson in EO nomenclature and making sure what you get is actually what you want. Now let’s talk about what you can do with your Cinnamon Bark EO.
The stats: Cinnamonum zeylanicum is in the botanical family Lauraceae. Other’s EO’s in the same botanical family include May Chang, and Ravensara. The cinnamon tree is indigenous to Sri Lanka, India, and Southeast Asia, but is cultivated in many countries with tropical climates.
Cinnamon is a serious dermal irritant and causes redness and rash when applied to the skin in the wrong concentrations. When cinnamon is used for beauty it’s generally for warming masks and scrubs as well as products that plump the lips. The right balance is key in using cinnamon for beauty as even one drop too much can be the difference between a warm tingle and a red rash. Facial skin is much gentler than the rest of your skin so be aware that testing on your hand might not be an accurate representation of how a product will react on your face.
Cinnamon Bark is best known in aromatherapy for being a powerful antimicrobial. You would want to use cinnamon when you feel a cold coming as it has been shown to be useful in resisting viruses. Cinnamon is also effective for the digestive system, helping to stimulate production of digestive juices. For general wellness cinnamon can be added to a massage oil to help stimulate circulation which benefits muscle tissue and the immune system.
Because cinnamon is irritating to skin it’s recommended for ingestion more often than most essential oils. Ingesting cinnamon is most helpful in an acute stage of cold, flu, or stomach upset. Care should be taken to add the cinnamon to a carrier so that it doesn’t burn the mouth and throat. Coconut oil is a great option since it tastes reasonably good and can easily be melted in order to mix in essential oil. It is not safe or good practice to ingest Cinnamon EO on a regular basis in order to prevent illness as Cinnamon EO can be a liver toxin. I know people promote the idea of ingesting drops of antimicrobial EO’s everyday as preventive medicine. I have also met people who, after following this advice, find themselves with mysterious pain in the liver area. If you must ingest cinnamon it’s best to do so on an as needed basis. To use it regularly in a massage oil keep the dilution at max 1% (6 drops in 1oz. of oil) and dilute further if your skin experiences irritation. Cinnamon Bark EO should be avoided during pregnancy and also for use with children.
As an effective antimicrobial oil Cinnamon Bark is useful when mixed with other germ killing EO’s in room sprays and cleaning products. When dish sponges get a little funky I refresh them with a drop of Cinnamon Bark. I wouldn’t recommend using Cinnamon Bark at full strength for these applications because it’s expensive and has a strong potential for irritating skin, there are other oils that can be just as effective and nice smelling.
Cinnamon is a clean spicy base note that blends well with many other essential oils but be aware that a little goes a long way with cinnamon and it can easily overpower other scents in a blend. Esotercially the scent of cinnamon is associated with fire and is commonly found in herbal formulas for attracting love or money. In a diffuser cinnamon can be harsh on the lungs when it’s too strong. When diffusing for home fragrance it’s best to blend it with citrus oils to smooth out it’s potential rough edges.
For fragrance (and also massage oil) I like to mix Cinnamon Bark with Patchouli and Grapefruit. It’s a happy, grounded blend with a little fire at it’s heart.
Have fun using your Cinnamon Bark! Please like and share if you found this post helpful.
The Complete Guide to Essential Oils and Aromatherapy by Salvatore Battaglia
Essential Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood