Sandalwood is a deep, woodsy scent that has rich balsamic and soft sweet floral accents.
It’s a scent many people are familiar with as it’s often used as a base note in many perfumes and colognes.
There are many different blends of sandalwood, and while most people are familiar with sandalwood, they may not be familiar with the oil’s healing benefits.
The oil comes from the wood and roots of the East Indian sandalwood tree, Santalum album. It is considered one of the most valuable trees in the world as its products are used around the world.
Sandalwood essential oil has a variety of health benefits which some research says may help manage anxiety, acts as an anti-inflammatory, fight bacteria and guard against skin cancer.
Sandalwood is known to calm the mind and body from anxiety and stress. It is also used to experience mental clarity and feel relaxed and peaceful after a busy day.
Sandalwood works as a sedative so it is great to use for those suffering from insomnia. It’s sedative effects can also be used to treat headaches and migraines.
Due to its calming abilities, sandalwood essential oil is can work to renew the skin. For those suffering with psoriasis, eczema, rosacea or pigmentation, sandalwood can soothe the epidermis and even out skin tone.
Sandalwood is effective as an emollient with powerful hydrating effects on the skin that penetrate deeply to deliver an intense dose of moisture.
The oil has gentle astringent effects which makes it the perfect ingredient to gently tone and tighten the appearance of wrinkles.
For yoga enthusiasts and those who like burning incense, Sandalwood is in high demand as an incense or the oil can also be used in a diffuser.
East Indian Sandalwood oil has further been used as an ingredient in traditional Ayurvedic and Chinese medicines for centuries. It’s been used as part of treatments for the common cold, muscle and digestive problems, infections, inflammation, and to address mental health.
Sandalwood has had a longstanding association with spiritual rituals. Ancient mystics were fond of building temples and other sacred structures with it, Egyptians used it in embalming and religious rituals, and Indian Muslims burned it as incense to elevate the souls of the recently deceased.
Sandalwood still plays a prominent role in Indian spiritual rituals, as it is considered a meditation aid and is often burned on altars as a means of divine communication.
In Buddhist practices, it is considered one of three integral incenses, along with Agarwood and Clove.
This article was first published in the Herbal Collective August’2022 issue. Subscribe to get the full issue.