Most of us probably know Frankincense as an Essential Oil. But many of us probably do not know the origins of Frankincense.
Frankincense is a resin gum from trees, as the photo above shows, and comes from the Boswellia genus, particularly Boswellia sacra. These trees grow in Oman, Yemen and the Horn of Africa which incldes Somalia and Ethiopia. When dried, the sap - which are available in irregular tablets - is burned as incense and thought to have several medicinal properties.
At Plant Therapy, 3 different types of Frankincense Essential Oils are available. These are Frankincense Carterii, Frankincense Frereana and Frankincense Serrata. Plant Therapy has also developed Fantastic Franks Essential Oil which is a synergy of the 3 Frankincense types.
So which Frankincense Essential Oil should you use and why?
To throw another option into the works, Plant Therapy has also created Fantastic Franks which contains not 1, not 3, but 4 different Frankincense Essential Oils together. The 4th Frankincense species included in this Plant Therapy Fantastic Franks Essential Oil is Frankincense Sacra.
But so which Frankincense to get, and which Frankincense Essential Oil is best for what purpose?
It can certainly be confusing when there are too many options. So here we take a look at the different properties of each of the 4 Frankincense Essential Oils that may help you better to decide which Frankincense Essential Oil would best suit your needs.
We think this Simple Checklist will be very helpful to most:
1) The simplest consideration is: are you diffusing Frankincense around children below10 years old? Yes: KidSafe Frankincense Carterii and Frankincense Frereana
2) Is cost a significant consideration for you?
Frankincense Frereana and Fantastic Franks Essential Oils are the most expensive Frankincense offered by Plant Therapy.
3) How do you intend to use your Frankincense Essential Oil?
Diffusing and DIY Skincare: KidSafe Frankincense Carterii is excellent
DIY Skincare only: KidSafe Frankincense Carterii or KidSafe Frankincense Frereana would work wonderfully
Please note that we do not encourage application of Essential Oils to any part of the face or body without dilution in Carrier Oils. Read about How to Dilute Essential Oils here.
Do the different Frankincense Essential Oils smell different?
If you are concerned about scents of the Essential Oils you are using - and it is a very valid one, since Essential Oils operate under the concept of Aromatherapy where scent plays a very significant role in the therapeutic impact on the user - the great thing is that the different Frankincense species have a generally similar basic scent. Overall, all the varieties of Frankincense smell somewhat smoky and a little spicy.
There is a mild difference among the different Frankincense Essential Oils:
Frankincense Carterii: slightly more lemony
Frankincense Frereana: slightly woodier and greener
Frankincense Serrata: slightly earthier
Fantastic Franks: slightly spicier
However, everyone's nose is going to have its personal preference, and one great scent to you may be one hard-to-take scent to another person - and we have seen that happen before :)
But all the different Frankincense Essential Oil types have same basic properties of be excellent for:
Bruises and swelling
Supporting the immune system
Uplifting the emotions and low moods
In our personal experience using the different Frankincense Essential Oils, our favourites are:
This is wonderful for scenting the home and makes us feel happy and calm.
We also add a few drops to our tub of detergent water for mopping the floor - and this is makes our entire home smell like the clean, fresh and happy sanctuary that homes should be!
Frankincense Carterii - is KidSafe - so we use it the same way as we do with Frankincense Serrata.
But as this is the more expensive Frankincense Essential Oil, we tend to use this more in our DIY Skincare products. Please refer to How to Dilute Essential Oils here.
Plant Therapy KidSafe Frankincense Carterii Essential Oil is in fact the most popular Frankincense that our Customers purchase. We now carry Frankincense Carterii CO2 where CO2 is simply a different method of extracting the Essential Oil from the Frankincense resins.
Various references indicate CO2 as a good if not superior alternative method of extracting Essential Oils, an example explanation of the CO2 method as follows:
CO2 extracts are usually thicker than their essential oil counterparts and often give off more of the aroma of the natural herb, spice, or plant than a distilled essential oil. CO2 extracts have been said to contain more plant constituents than the amount extracted from the same plant using steam distillation.
Frankincense Frereana - is KidSafe - but it is also the most expensive Frankincense.
Additionally, Frankincense Frereana Essential Oil is also prized for its skin rejuvenating properties. So in our opinion, Frankincense Frereana is best used in DIY skincare for its anti-aging properties, addressing wrinkles, scars, dry and damaged skin.
You can get Roller Bottles and simply fill it with a Carrier Oil such as Plant Therapy Younger Glo which has a superb mix of some of the best oils for skin, and add 3 drops of Frankincense Frereana into it. Super simple way of getting great skin.
As with all Frankincense Essential Oils, Frereana can also help with natural healing of wounds or cuts.
Overall, we love the scent of Frankincense Carterii the most, and for its broad coverage of being KidSafe, great for skin, excellent for emotional health, and reasonable pricing.
Our Purpose at Sage Essentials is to provide everyone access to the wonderful benefits of Nature in Essential Oils. And we make our Essential Oils as affordable, and as simple, to purchase as possible.
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