Ravintsara (Cinnamomum camphora) is a tall evergreen tree that grows wild in humid tropical forests, and is also known as the camphor tree. Many countries use it as an ornamental tree in gardens and parks because, in addition to beautifying the landscape, it also provides a wonderful fragrant experience. Its refreshing essential oil has earned the title of the queen of antiviral oils due to its powerful properties.
The essential oil of ravintsara is obtained by distilling the leaves. It has a fresh, clean eucalyptus scent with mild peppery notes. The aroma is refreshing and energizing, and combines well with eucalyptus, mint, and citrus oils. It also goes well with incense, lavender, copaiba, rose, and vetiver.
Ravintsara is named after the Malagasy word ‘ravina’, meaning leaf, and ‘tsara’, meaning good. It literally means ‘tree with good leaves’ or ‘leaf good for all’. The name is very appropriate, given that it is extremely versatile, and is said to help with everything, from headaches and colds, to depression and anxiety.
It contains aromatic substances – sabinen, 1,8cineol and α-terpineol which give it antibacterial, antiviral, analgesic, and anti-inflammatory properties. Ravintsara oil strengthens immunity, has antimicrobial, antiallergic, and antiseptic effects. It has antirheumatic, antispasmodic, mucolytic, and stimulant therapeutic properties. It is expectorant, decongestant, and anti-catarrhal, which means it helps with angina, bronchitis, and sinusitis. This list shows us how versatile and powerful this oil is.
Although it’s not as popular in the media as lavender, mint, incense, and other essential oils, its use and benefits are so numerous that it’s often called a “must in every home pharmacy cabinet”. Here are some:
- strengthens immunity
- treats infections
- relieves respiratory problems
- helps with angina, bronchitis, and sinusitis
- reduces inflammation in the body
- relieves headaches and migraines
- great for sore muscles
- reduces pain in general
- helps with insomnia
- helps with depression, anxiety, and neurosis
- removes negative emotions such as worry and fear
- helps with wounds, cuts, and infections
- improves memory and concentration
Ravintsara is one of the strongest antiviral oils. It is excellent in fighting against viral infections, and is especially used to relieve colds and coughs, as well as for problems and infections of the respiratory system and other ailments. It provides excellent immune support during flu epidemics. For this purpose, it is best used as an inhalation in the form of aroma lamps and diffusers. Add a few drops to the diffuser and inhale by approaching its opening and inhaling the mist for 2 to 3 minutes several times a day. Spending time in the room where the diffuser works is also very effective.
The use of diffusers is not recommended for children up to 3 months of age, after which they can use it simply by staying in the room where the diffuser previously worked, or by dissolving the essential oil in vegetable oil, and applying it to the chest, back or feet.
Ravintsara essential oil helps develop and strengthen the immune system, and fight colds and infections. It acts like antibiotic, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory. It will make it easier for you to avoid and prevent seasonal illnesses.
Relieving respiratory problems
We all know how uncomfortable it feels when we can’t breathe. In this time of colds, flu and viral infections, ravintsara is a great assistance and help. Inhaling its scent will help clear clogged sinuses and open up the upper and lower airways (bronchi and lungs). To do this, add a few drops of ravintsara to the diffuser, or inhale for 10 minutes. If you wish, you can also add eucalyptus essential oil to it.
Beneficial for the skin
Ravintsara cleanses the skin, soothes inflammation, and helps with skin problems such as eczema, rashes, and the like. You can apply it diluted in vegetable oil (like almond oil) directly to the affected areas, and mix it with other essential oils like lavender and immortelle. It will also give your skin a healthy glow.
Headaches can be very uncomfortable and make it difficult for us to carry out our normal activities, and even ability to rest. To reduce it, add a few drops of ravintsara oil over a towel or a vaporizer and inhale the scent.
Treatment for insomnia
If you are often overstrained at bedtime, you can’t relax and fall asleep and your mind is overactive, help yourself with the power of essential oils. For a quick help, take a deep breath of relaxing scent of ravintsara, hold your breath for a few seconds and exhale. Repeat this a couple of times.
Mix the essential oils of ravintsara, lavender, and sweet orange in equal proportions, 1 ml each, and store in a dark bottle. Add few drops of this mixture to an oil lamp or a diffuser before bed. It will fill the room with a wonderful scent and create an atmosphere for relaxation and sleep. If you don’t have a diffuser, you can apply the oil to your wrists and temples (dissolved in vegetable oil) and inhale the scent for a few minutes in bed.
Sore muscles after training or some physical effort are very uncomfortable, they reduce mobility, and interfere with our daily functioning. To remove all this discomfort, add few drops of ravintsara oil to the hot bath. This will relieve pain, cramps and fatigue, and help restore muscle mobility and flexibility.
Enhancing our mood
The pleasant scent of ravintsara helps lift our mood and energize us. It brings a sense of calm and joy, and will disperse black thoughts, worries, fears, and nervousness.
Improving mental and cognitive abilities
Ravintsara essential oil has a beneficial effect on our mind, it increases our focus and concentration, removes brain fog, and enhances our motivation and determination to move forward, complete a project and achieve the changes we want.
How to use it
Ravintsara can be used orally, dermally (on the skin), in air diffusion and aerosol inhalation. When used on the skin, it should, like any other essential oil, be first diluted in vegetable oil such as almond, fractionated coconut, etc.
Ravintsara is great for personal and home use, and its refreshing and energizing aroma will help create a relaxing environment.
For a fragrant space
If you want to create a pleasant atmosphere, or remove stale air and unpleasant odors such as cigarette smoke, and also disinfect the space, simply add 3, 4 drops to an oil lamp or a diffuser. The diffuser will keep the scent longer and transmit droplets through the air, while the oil lamp is extremely decorative and additionally relaxes with its burning candle flame. It will release a pleasant, refreshing scent that will lift your mood and create a nice atmosphere.
For cleaning and refreshing the space
You can keep your home fragrant and clean on your own. Ravintsara cleans the surfaces in the house very efficiently. For this, add a few drops of this powerful oil to a mixture of distilled alcohol and water, shake, and with this mixture wipe all surfaces in the house – floors, kitchen worktops, tiles, handles.
- 1 dl 70% ethanol alcohol
- 15 drops ravintsara essential oil
If you want to effectively disinfect the area from viruses, make a mixture of pure 70% alcohol and ravintsara essential oil, then wipe the desired surfaces such as handles, worktops, light switches, remote controls, exercise equipment (weights, kettlebells, elastic bands, etc. ), mattresses and pillows for sitting and sleeping (especially if someone in the family was ill), faucets, toilet handles, etc.
For this purpose, you can also use ravintsara essential oil in an oil lamp or a diffuser. Simply add 3 to 4 drops and enjoy the scent that is extremely effective in purifying and destroying harmful microbes in the air. This not only prevents you from getting infected, but also speeds up healing in case you have already become ill.
For personal use
Adding ravintsara oil to your bath will give you relaxing and energizing self-care moments. Such daily rituals come in especially handy in these times of intensified stress, or after a hard day’s work when you want to quickly rest and relax. At the same time, its scent will strengthen your immunity, and essential oil droplets, which will quickly enter the blood due to warm water, will quickly regenerate you.
- 10 drops ravintsare essential oil
- half a cup (90g) epsom salt
- half a cup (90g) common salt
Mix the salts and add essential oil to the mixture. Add salt to warm water while filling the tub, wait a few minutes and then enjoy your relaxing and scented bath.
Make a hand sanitizer spray
- 3-4 drops ravintsara essential oil
- 30 ml of 70% ethanol alcohol
Add the essential oil to the alcohol. Pour it into a 30 ml spray bottle and use as a classic hand spray. This spray is extremely powerful and antiviral, but unlike the conventional one, it doesn’t destroy the protective microbiome of your skin, and thus additionally protects your immunity. If you don’t have the time or energy to make one, Immortella offers a natural disinfectant with ravintsara.
You can make a great massage oil.
- 10 drops ravintsara essential oil
- 100 ml almond oil
Almond oil is very gentle on the skin and wonderfully nourishes it. It is especially good for dry and damaged skin. Ravintsara will relax, energize, and help relieve muscle pain. The oil is quickly absorbed and leaves a silky feeling. You can use this oil after showering for skin care, for a massage, and you can also add it to your bath. If you wish, you can add a few drops of lavender, rosemary and similar oils to the mixture for a different scent.
In case of colds, flu and various diseases of the respiratory system, it’s great to rub it on your chest. This will make breathing easier and speed up healing. For this purpose add a larger number of drops to the almond oil. You can also pair it with a diffuser to which you have added a few drops of ravintsara essential oil.
We hope this article has inspired you to introduce, if you haven’t already, ravintsara to your collection of essential oils and enjoy its recipes and benefits.