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Ingredient spotlight: eucalyptus oil

  • 4 min read

At UpCircle, we love to showcase the ingredients that we use in our products. We’ve covered everything from tangerine oil and apricot kernel oil to coffee and chai spices – now, we’re covering the invigorating eucalyptus oil.

Introducing eucalyptus oil

Eucalyptus is not a single plant, rather a genus of more than 700 species of flowering plants in the family Myrtaceae. Most people know eucalyptus by its long, blue-green leaves, but it can grow to be from a short shrub to a tall, evergreen tree. 

Most species of eucalyptus are native to Australia, and the surrounding islands. They can produce flowers which are typically a creamy white or yellow colour, and woody fruit capsules known as gumnuts, which release seeds.

Eucalyptus oil is extracted from the leaves of several species of eucalyptus plant, especially eucalyptus globulus, and is subsequently widely used in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and aromatherapy.

What is eucalyptus oil used for?

1. Natural cleaner

For anyone looking for a natural alternative to the chemical-based cleaners we find on the shelves in supermarkets, eucalyptus oil can be used to clean surfaces. Add a few drops to hot water to dilute, and wipe surfaces using a cloth.

2. Aromatherapy

One of the most widely known uses of eucalyptus oil in modern times has to be aromatherapy. 

Many people find that inhaling eucalyptus oil can enhance their focus and reduce mental fatigue. Eucalyptus oil also has a calming effect that can help reduce stress and anxiety.

3. Health and wellness

Eucalyptus oil has been used for generations to help alleviate minor ailments from colds and congestion to inflammation and acne. 

5 benefits of eucalyptus oil

Eucalyptus oil benefits are wide ranging – from skincare to colds and improving focus and repelling insects.

1. Great antibacterial

This oil works well as an antibacterial agent, especially due to the high content of 1,8-cineole (known as eucalyptol). Eucalyptol typically makes up over 70% of eucalyptus oil and is the primary active component.

In order to inhibit bacterial growth, eucalyptol disrupts the bacterial cell membrane. This disrupts the structural integrity of the bacteria, causing the bacterial cell to break down.

2. Acts as an anti-inflammatory

There are several mechanisms by which the eucalyptol present in eucalyptus oil works as an anti-inflammatory agent. Without diving too much into the science, one way that eucalyptus oil acts as an anti-inflammatory is because of its ability to reduce oxidative stress. 

The antioxidants present in eucalyptus oil help neutralise free radicals – atoms with an unpaired electron on its other shell – which can cause cell damage. Free radicals can cause oxidative stress, which in turn can cause a wealth of issues including inflammation. 

By lowering oxidative stress in the body, eucalyptus oil can help to mitigate an inflammatory response.

3. Works as a decongestant

When struggling with lingering cold or flu symptoms, many people look to oils such as eucalyptus to help alleviate their symptoms. Some people find that eucalyptus oil helps to relieve some symptoms of colds such as stuffy noses and also relieve some respiratory complaints. 

Eucalyptol has mucolytic properties, which means that it can break down and thin any mucus that might be contributing to your congestion. This makes it easier to expel the mucus from the airways, helping to clear congestion. 

It also helps to reduce swelling in the respiratory tract due to its anti-inflammatory effects, which can help open up the airways and ease breathing when you’re feeling under the weather.

Eucalyptus oil also has antimicrobial properties that help to eliminate bacteria, viruses, and fungi in the respiratory tract. This helps to address the underlying infections that cause congestion in the first place.

4. Natural insect repellent

For those in hotter climates or when the summer months arrive, insects can become a huge annoyance.

Despite the gorgeously uplifting scent of eucalyptus oil, the scent is generally unpleasant to many insects, including mosquitoes, flies, and ticks. Spritzing this oil helps to keep flies and insects away while you enjoy the weather.

Top tip: Always ensure that eucalyptus oil is diluted in a carrier oil before applying to the skin, and perform a patch test before widespread use to ensure there is no allergic reaction or skin irritation.

5. Enhance focus

Fresh and invigorating, eucalyptus essential oil is typically used in aromatherapy. Its aroma can help to clear the mind, enhance focus, and promote both a sense of vitality and energy.

This oil produces a strong, refreshing scent which can stimulate the olfactory system as well as the brain’s limbic system. The limbic system is involved in emotion, motivation, and memory, so this stimulation can lead to improved mental clarity and focus.

Top tip: Diffusing or spraying eucalyptus oil in your home can help create a refreshing and revitalising atmosphere, perfect for boosting your energy levels and improving focus.

Home Mist with Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Our fan-favourite Home Mist combines soothing lavender with minty eucalyptus, leaving spaces feeling homely and calm. 

Blended with a whole host of other essential oils like rosemary oil, lemongrass oil and peppermint oil, this home mist invigorates your senses, creating a wonderful ambiance in your space.

If you’re unsure how this mist can transform your house into a home, take a look at our recent blog: 3 ways to use UpCircle’s home mist

 

 

Our home mist is infused with upcycled grapefruit water, a by-product from the food and drinks industry. The fruit water bears all the intrinsic richness of the fruit itself, enriching the product with bioactive properties.

How to use: Spritz this mist 10 centimetres away from fabrics, curtains, carpets, and cushions. Additionally, you could use this as a refreshing bathroom spray to enjoy the versatile scent throughout your home.

Take a look at all of our home products or shop the full range.