Rosewood has been harvested for years without any program for replacing the trees with new plantings for making rosewood oil. This has been very damaging environmentally. Rosewood is slow- growing and resources are becoming increasingly limited. The rain forests have suffered greatly as a consequence of the felling of the trees for timber and oil. Those who have any regard for the environment will probably choose not to use this oil, in spite of its therapeutic benefits, unless given proven assurance that the oil comes from a sustainable source. Many (and most reputable) suppliers of essential oils will also refuse to sell the oil unless it meets environmentally conscious criteria.
The tree is a tropical evergreen of medium size and grows in the Amazon basin. It is a member of the family Lauraceae. The timber has been used for many years in the production of high-quality furniture and is also exported to Japan for the manufacture of chopsticks. Peru and Brazil are the largest producers of rosewood oil.
The essential oil of rosewood is obtained from wood chippings by the process of steam distillation. The oil is colorless or pale yellow and has a sweet, pleasantly woody fragrance. Rosewood oil was formerly used as a source of linalol for the perfume industry, but now most linalol is synthetic. Rosewood oil is still used in the manufacture of perfumes and perfumed products and is also extensively used in the food and drinks industries.
Therapeutically, rosewood is balancing, calming, uplifting and toning. It is a sensual oil to use in massage or in a vaporizer to scent a room, and it blends well with a variety of different oils, in particular the citrus and floral oils. It can help to relieve tense headaches, soothe stress and aid concentration
Rosewood oil is antiseptic and antimicrobial, and it strengthens the body’s immune response. It can be used in massage, bathing or inhalation to help combat influenza and similar infections. It has reasonably good expectorant properties and can help to soothe dry coughs. Not only will rosewood oil help the body to fight off troublesome infections, it will also make sufferers feel better in themselves and can help combat the depressive symptoms that are often associated with a severe bout of influenza.
In skin care, essential oil of rosewood can be used for a variety of purposes. It is anti-inflammatory and will soothe dry, sore complexions. It is widely appreciated for treating ageing skins, scarring, dermatitis and eczema.
Suitable Methods of Use
None. Rosewood oil is nontoxic, non-sensitizing and nonirritant. However, as we already mentioned in the introductory section, you should pay attention about the environmental issues when buying rosewood oil.