Citronella – not just an insect repellent

October 05, 2017

Citronella – not just an insect repellent

Used for hundreds of years in countries like China and Indonesia to kill infection and reduce inflammation, Citronella Cymbopogon nardus is a grassy plant most commonly used as an insect repellent, but due to its fresh citrusy scent is popular in personal care, cosmetics and perfumes.

Citronella Cymbopogon is popular in food and drink production - Aromatic Ingredients

The essential oil is steam distilled from the leaves and stems of the grassy plant to form a concentrated mix of antioxidants and phytochemicals with high levels of citronellol, geraniol and linalool.

With over 30 species grown across the world Cymbopogon is used in Southeast Asian teas and cooking. Citronella is a popular ingredient in food, drinks and desserts added for both preservation purposes and to enhance flavour.

There are 2 main types of Citronella used commercially Java Cymbopogon winterianus exhibits a darker colour and is regarded as the higher quality oil, due to its strong content of Citronellol and Geraniol. Ceylon is distilled from Cymbopogon nardus.

This natural insect repellent has been registered as a “biopesticide” in the United States by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), as a nontoxic way to eliminate insects and for that purpose it can be found as one of the main ingredients in most pesticide products on the supermarket shelves. It is also used to deter ticks and pest from dogs and livestock.

Natural insect repellent has been registered as a “biopesticide” in the United States by the EPA - Aromatic Ingredients

Citronella – not just an insect repellent

Diluted and applied each hour to skin, Citronella can discourage bugs as well as head and skin lice and when used in hair care formulations can eliminate excess sebum build up and add shine to dull hair. With its antifungal abilities, Citronella can fight dry and itchy scalp conditions and kill infections.

As an antiseptic, it kills skin infections, caused by scratches and bites. It tightens pores making skin appear smoother and works as a excellent skin antioxidant.

With anti-fungal properties Citronella can sanitise surfaces to minimise the spread of bacteria in both bathroom and kitchen areas. Used as a room spray this oil works to deodorise rooms, leaving a fresh and clean fragrance while also disinfecting germs so they can’t reproduce.

Used for arthritis, joint and muscle pain to reduce inflammation by improving blood circulation and minimising pain.

The amazing benefits of Citronella - Aromatic Ingredients

Now you see that Citronella has many more uses than just an insect repellent. If you’re looking to include Citronella in your formulations, contact the team at Aromatic Ingredients, we even have it down packed and ready for immediate dispatch as Citronella is one of our popular ingredients used for personal care and cosmetic development.


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