Neroli essential oil (citrus aurantium) is a very precious oil produced from the blossoms of the bitter orange tree. The blossoms are small, white, and very fragrant. The oil tends to be more expensive than other essential oils because it requires 1 ton of orange blossoms to produce 1 quart of oil.
Neroli is named after Anna Maria de La Tremoille, Princess of Nerola (we're not making this up!) who first introduced the fragrance to Italy.
Neroli essential oil is both a sedative and overall tonic to the nervous system, and can be beneficial for most stress-related disorders of an emotional origin. The oil has been said to treat heart palpitations, relieve insomnia, and reduce nervousness. Neroli's calming effect can be obtained by deeply inhaling the aroma, rubbing a few drops on the solar plexus, diluting in Jojoba oil and wearing as a natural perfume, or diffusing in small amounts. Neroli is considered one of the most important aromatics for aromatherapy treatment for anxiety and for depression resulting from stress and anxiety.
Neroli is one of the premier oils for mature women's skin care (along with rose otto and clary sage). The relaxing properties are imparted on a cellular level and the oil is especially beneficial for sensitive skin. Salvatore Battaglia notes in The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy: "The oil is reputed to have a rejuvenating effect on the skin, as it has an ability to stimulate the growth of new and healthy cells."
Neroli essential oil has been noted as a tonic for the female reproductive system. For relief from menstrual cramps, add neroli to a bath or dilute to 10% in apricot kernel oil and massage into the abdomen.
The anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic, and anti-spasmodic properties of neroli oil make it effective against intestinal disorders. Again, use in a bath or dilute and massage into the abdomen. Abdominal massage with neroli may be most effective when the stomach trouble is the result of stress.
The aroma of neroli has been reported to successfully treat nervous depression and shock; it is relaxing to the body and spirit and may bring relief in difficult situations. When this essential oil is used in a diffuser or burner, it can enhance the ambiance of a room, bringing an air of tranquility and relaxation.