The Clary sage (Salvia sclarea) is an aromatic plant native to the Mediterranean Basin but is also found growing in some areas in Northern Africa and Central Asia. The plant’s name came from the Latin word “clarus” which means “clarifying/cleansing.’
This plant which belongs to the Lamiaceae family is characterized by having white, heart-shaped leaves with an earthy, floral scent. It can grow up to a meter tall. Its essential oil comes from its leaves and flowering tops. Aside from its oil, the leaves and blossoms are traditionally used for making alcoholic drinks like wine and beer.
The principal components of this oil are Linalool, α-terpineol, geraniol, acetate derivative, and myrcene. Clary sage essential oil can be used for aromatherapy, can be added to a carrier oil and applied topically, or can be added to food and ingested.
History of the Use of Clary Sage
In the Middle Ages, the clary sage was considered a sacred plant and was used in making magical potions and during cleansing rituals. For some time, it was also known as the ‘Eye of Christ.’ It was believed that the oil was magical and can cure any illness. Women used this oil because of its ability to reduce menstrual cramps and help ease the symptoms of menopause. Early Romans used clary sage seeds soaked in water as eyewash.
Benefits of Using Clary Sage Essential Oil
Aromatherapy for Stress Reduction
Clare sage essential oil, when used in aromatherapy, can ease stress, and help calm the mind. Its ability to reduce anxiety makes it a good oil of choice for patients who suffer from depression. This is because of linalool, a component of clary sage oil proven to be an effective anti-anxiety and anti-depressant.
According to a study published in 2010, clary sage oil has the most potent anti-stress effect compared to chamomile, rosemary, and lavender.
The oil can be used in a diffuser or mixed with bathwater.
The cooling property of clary sage essential oil can ease skin inflammation by calming skin rashes and reduce redness of the skin. This oil can be used against joint pain or muscle strains and sprains. According to research, clary sage oil is effective in treating periodontitis, an inflammatory gum condition.
For menstruation and menopause
Clary sage essential oil can be mixed with carrier oils and can alleviate painful menstrual cramps or be used as massage oil. This is applied to the lower abdomen between the menstrual cycles.
Sclareol, one component of clary sage oil, helps ease the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes.
Phytoestrogen contained in clary sage gives the oil an estrogenic effect, therefore regulating estrogen levels in the body. This means better promotion of healthy uterus for women.
Blending clary sage with grapefruit and lavender oil with a carrier oil and massaging it over sore areas can help alleviate pains and bloating during menstruation.
To fight infections
Clary sage oil is one of the essential oils with antibacterial qualities and works with certain strains of bacteria. An example of which is the ability of the oil to prevent staphylococcal activities in wound infections and reduce the growth of E. coli.
Aside from fighting bacteria, this oil is also proven to have anti-fungal properties. Thanks to the linalool and linalyl acetate components present in the oil.
The oil facilitates healing of wounds and irritations when applied to the affected area.
Increases mental function
Clary sage is among the sage plants linked to improved mental alertness and better memory. This is one reason why clary sage oil is believed to be a potential treatment to fight the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.
A few drops of this essential oil can be added to water and sprayed or diffused in a room. It also gives that refreshing feeling while deodorizing the room at the same time.
Lowers blood pressure and promotes restful sleep
If used for aromatherapy, it was learned that clary sage essential oil has the ability to lower blood pressure and can foster relaxation.
For people suffering from insomnia, the clary sage essential oil can be diffused in the room before bedtime to encourage relaxation, reduce restlessness, and help them sleep better.
Clary sage essential oil helps in relieving symptoms of indigestion such as bloating, cramping, and contractions of abdominal muscles.
Promotes clearer skin
Clare sage oil is recommended for those who suffer from acne. It can be used as a facial wash when added to a couple of natural ingredients. Because of its antibacterial property, it can prevent breakouts and other skin irritations.
It helps control the production of oil on the skin and is good for those with both dry and oily skin.
Promotes healthy hair and scalp
The clary sage essential oil is used to help grow stronger and healthier hair strands while reducing the development of dandruff on the scalp. Mixed with carrier oil, it is massaged on the scalp before using regular shampoo to help reduce hair frizz.
Safety Tips and Precautions
The skin reacts differently to essential oils. Always dilute it with carrier oils. It is also best to do a patch test first before applying clary sage oil to the skin.
A potential side effect of this oil is it can cause headaches to some.
Although it has anti-stress or anti-depressant properties, the use of this oil to treat medical conditions should be based on a doctor’s advice.
For women with estrogen-related health issues, it is beast to consult with a physician first before using any clary sage oil.
This essential oil’s sedative property is also known to react to sleep-related medications and can enhance it.