Eucalyptus polybractea (Blue Mallee) Essential Oil
- Botanical Name: Eucalyptus polybractea F.Muell. ex R.T.Baker
- Origin: Australia
- Process: Steam Distilled Essential Oil
- Plant Part: Leaves
- Cultivation: Wild Grown
- Use: Aromatherapy / Natural Perfumery. Always dilute.
- Note: Top Note
- Aroma Family: Medicinal
- Aroma: Strong, sweet-camphoraceous, fresh, cooling aroma, with a clean but faint dryout.
- Contraindications: Avoid use on or near the face of infants or children under age ten; please see important Safety Considerations below.
Safety Considerations: Because of E. polybractea oil’s high cineole content, using large amounts should be avoided (can cause respiratory irritation, slurred speech, convulsions, coma) and should be used with care for those with asthma; it should not be applied on or near the face of infants or children under age ten. We also recommend avoiding use of this oil with elders, epileptics, pregnant and/or nursing women. In general, Eucalyptus – Narrow Leaf is preferred for sensitive individuals and children.* Tisserand recommends a maximum dermal use level of up to 20%.13 However, we recommend a much lower maximum dermal use level of 5-10%. Dilute before using. A patch test should be performed before use for those with sensitive skin.
*The primary constituent in Eucalyptus Narrow Leaf (E. radiata) is 1,8-cineole, a potent and volatile oxide. The safety issue with E. polybractea is due to the other highly volatile constituents that intensify 1,8-cineole, whereas E. radiata has percentages of moderately volatile and extremely gentle constituents that mediate the intensity of 1,8-cineole. All essential oils represent complex synergies, not isolated molecules. For this reason, Eucalyptus Narrow Leaf is preferred for sensitive individuals and children.
Wild Grown Australian Blue Mallee Eucalyptus Essential oil
Our wild grown Blue Mallee Eucalyptus essential oil has a strong, sweet-camphoraceous aroma with a fresh, cooling effect. Of all the commercially harvested Eucalyptus trees sought for their elevated cineole content, the Blue Mallees contain one of the highest percentages – 88 to 92%.1 Eucalyptus polybractea is used mainly for pharmaceutical preparations since it is an excellent starting material for the isolation of 1,8-cineole (aka eucalyptol), which is frozen out of the oil, congealing at about 1 degree C.2 It is one of the highest essential oil-yielding Eucalyptus species3, growing extensively in low rainfall areas of New South Wales and Victoria, Australia. This species is a typical 'mallee' – dwarf in size and having several (poly) stems (bractea) growing up from the main rootstock; its leaves have a dull grayish blue appearance.4
For hundreds of years, the Aborigines of Australia have used the leaves of Eucalyptus for their antiseptic and healing actions.5 In the mid-1800s, groves of Eucalyptus trees were planted in one of the most swampy and unhealthy districts of Algiers, North Africa – a brilliant botanical strategy – to halt the spread of malaria. The trees required large amounts of water to thrive, thus lowering the water table and eliminating breeding habitat for malaria-carrying mosquitoes as well as repelling these insects with the aroma exhaled from the leaves.6,7
Like other types of Eucalyptus, the species E. polybractea is beneficial for the lungs; in this case it is especially suited for diffusion in the air.8 Although its ketone content suggests potential neurotoxic effects, Eucalyptus polybractea is a safe oil and presents minimal danger of toxicity when used with caution after appropriate dilution and when combined with other applicable essential oils.9 Please see Safety Considerations below.
For information regarding the aromatherapeutic attributes of Blue Mallee Eucalyptus essential oil, please see:
- L'Aromathérapie Exactement, Pierre Franchomme and Dr. Daniel Pénoël, 1990, p. 352.
- Essential Oils – A Handbook for Aromatherapy Practice, Jennifer Peace Rhind, 2012, p. 189.
- Aromatherapeutic Blending: Essential Oils in Synergy, Jennifer Peace Rhind, 2016, p. 255.
- Medical Aromatherapy – Healing with Essential Oils, by Kurt Schnaubelt, 1999, pp. 197-8.
- Aromatherapy Workbook, Marcel Lavabre, 1997, p. 135.
- "Variation in Composition and Yield of Foliage Oil of Eucalyptus polybractea," Z Iqbal, M Akhtar, et al., J Chem Soc Pak, 2011, 33(2): 183-187, https://www.jcsp.org.pk/ArticleUpload/1606-7324-1-CE.pdf
Aromatic Profile: Strong, sweet-camphoraceous, fresh cooling aroma, with a clean but faint dryout.
Appearance: Pale yellow, transparent, mobile liquid.
Use: Aromatherapy / Natural Perfumery.
Blending Suggestions: Dilute and add drop by drop to your blends until the desired effect is achieved.
Blends Well With: Black Pepper, Cedarwood, Coriander, Ginger, Juniper, Laurel Leaf, Lavandin, Lavender, Lemon, Lemongrass, Marjoram, Melissa, Myrtle, Niaouli, Peppermint, Pine, Ravensara, Rosemary, Tea Tree, Thyme, Verbena, Yuzu. "The dryout of E. polybractea is not woody-sweet or heavy, 'paint-like' - there is hardly any dryout note at all, but just a clean fadeout."10