Oil Of The Week: Myrrh
Myrrh, commiphora myrrha, is related to frankincense and is one of the oldest and most widely used oils across the globe. The myrrh tree is a small thorny bush that is native to northern Africa and Arabia. The tree produces sap that hardens into resin. The essential oil is extracted from the resin via steam distillation and has a dry, woody aroma with smoky, earthy and herbaceous notes.
Myrrh was a priceless commodity along ancient trade routes, and at one point was considered more valuable than gold. The resin was traditionally burned over hot coals, releasing a warming, woody and sweet smoke that was enigmatic and used during spiritual and ritual practice. Myrrh has been highly valued in many cultures over thousands of years and continues to be a precious and highly regarded oil even today. It is used for medicinal, therapeutic and cultural/religious purposes.
Here are some of myrrh’s benefits:
Myrrh can help alleviate coughs and colds, congestion, bronchitis and phlegm. It is an expectorant that reduces the effects of respiratory issues.
Myrrh is antifungal and antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-catarrhal (helps eliminate excess mucus from the body). It helps calm inflamed tissue and promotes wound healing by protecting from infection. It is an excellent essential oil to keep in your medicine cupboard.
Myrrh is an antiseptic and can be used as a gargle to cleanse the mouth and throat, and for good oral hygiene. Add a few drops to half a glass of water and use as a mouth rinse or add a drop or two to your toothpaste.
Myrrh may reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and can have a soothing effect on skin, helping it to look more youthful. Add a few drops to your daily moisturiser to start seeing the benefits.
Myrrh is great to soothe skin after shaving. Combine with lavender, helichrysum, tea tree and frankincense to keep the skin calm and prevent any reaction to razors.
It is also good for nail care, add to your nail cream or balm to soften and moisturise cuticles.
Myrrh can help strengthen your roots and also improve scalp condition, getting rid of dandruff, improving hair loss and also stimulating the brain.
Myrrh can help reduce negative emotions and reduce tension, promote emotional balance and wellbeing, provide upliftment and peace, and promote awareness. It is ideal to use in a yoga studio or meditative space.
Great in massage therapy, myrrh is anti inflammatory, has antioxidant properties and will promote deep relaxation of muscles and tissue.
Oils that blend well with myrrh: frankincense, cyprus, geranium, patchouli, rose, clove, sandalwood, citrus oils, lavender, juniper berry and even eucalyptus and jasmine.
Myrrh is one of those very high-end ingredients that gives an air of luxury to any product they are added to. It is commonly used in some of the more expensive skincare and beauty brands, but you can easily incorporate it into your cosmetics to give a similar feel and benefit. Add it to your base cream or shampoo to give your skin and hair an extra boost and pamper or incorporate it into your own DIY product. Here are a few recipes.
Royal Myrrh Perfume
9 drops myrrh essential oil
9 drops rose absolute
7 drops patchouli essential oil
7 drops cedarwood essential oil
7 drops frankincense essential oil
5 drops vanilla oleoresin
100ml almond oil
Blend all your essential oils together in a bottle, swirling to incorporate. Gently add the sweet almond oil and shake lightly. Then store in a cool dark place for a few months to allow the scents to meld together and mature. Once ready, dab on a few drops to wrists, neck or temples.
Myrrh Shaving and Conditioning Oil Serum
5 drops myrrh essential oil
5 drops frankincense essential oil
5 drops helichrysum essential oil
5 drops neroli essential oil
5 drops sandalwood essential oil
5 drops carrot seed essential oil
2 ml Vitamin E oil
5 ml sea buckthorn berry oil
15 ml hazelnut oil
20 ml argan oil
20 ml jojoba oil
Add everything to the bottle and shake gently to combine. Massage into skin after shaving to prevent any irritation and to deeply condition and moisturise the skin.
Myrrh Foot Bath
Suffering from tired feet that have been cooped up in closed shoes? Adding a few drops of myrrh to a foot bath is a great way to rejuvenate as well as clear up any blisters, Athlete’s Foot, infections and other common foot problems. Plus it is wonderfully relaxing!
A tub or foot bath filled with warm water
½ c Epsom salts
4 drops myrrh essential oil
You can also add in another essential oil if you wish: something citrusy such as lime might be refreshing for feet, or add in a floral note such as rose.
Soak your feet and enjoy!