Clary Sage - Salvia sclarea

In the 1500’s clary sage was cultivated in Europe mainly for brewing ales and adding to wine to make it more intoxicating...

Clary sage is uplifting and balancing, with a sweet, nutty-herbaceous scent.

Nature: uplifting, balancing

Clary sage contains a hormone similar to estrogen, which is useful in helping women with menstrual discomfort and premenstrual tension.

Ideal in massage or bath to relieve tension and promote a restful sleep.

Principal Actions: Calming to the nervous system, easing depression and mental burn-out; balancing for female hormonal complaints.

Practical Uses

Methods of use: application, aroma lamp, bath, inhaler, lightbulb ring, massage, mist spray

Skin Care with Clary Sage

Clary sage is astringent and is particularly useful for oily skin and hair. It also has strong cellular regenerating properties, making it ideal for ageing skin, poor hair growth and alopecia.

Oily or Combination Skin: Mix 2 drops clary sage, 4 drops geranium and 4 drops bergamot in 20ml/4tsp grapeseed oil and apply to face.

Oily Skin Bath Blend: Mix 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops ylang ylang and 2 drops orange in a bath.

Circulation, Muscles & Joints

Clary sage has warming, relaxant properties and is used to ease sports related aches and pains.

Aching Muscles: Mix 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops basil, 2 drops black pepper, 2 drops sweet marjoram in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and massage into aching muscles.

Genito-Urinary System

Clary sage contains a hormone-like compound similar to estrogen; its effect is female-balancing, and is used in the treatment of menstrual pain and irregularity, menopause and PMS.

Balancing Female Hormones: Mix 4 drops clary sage, 2 drops jasmine and 4 drops sandalwood in 20ml/3tsp carrier oil and massage on to the abdomen in a clockwise circular motion.

Menopause: Mix 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops star anise (Illicium verum) and 2 drops aniseed (Pimpinella anisum) in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and use in a massage.

Period Pain (Dysmenorrhoea) Soothing Blend - Mix 3 drops geranium, 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops yarrow and 5 drops German chamomile in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and rub into the abdomen using gentle, clockwise strokes.

Infrequent Periods (Oligomenorrhea): Mix 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops yarrow, 2 drops fennel and 4 drops hyssop in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and use in a massage.

Absence of Periods: (Amenorrhoea): Mix 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops yarrow, 2 drops myrtle and 2 drops vetiver in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and use in a massage.

Labour and Childbirth: To help bring on labour contractions and to feel more calm during childbirth, Mix 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops Jasmine in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and have this blend massaged into your abdomen and lower back.

Nervous System

Clary sage has sedative qualities, and calms anxiety, tension, stress and exhaustion. The odor is euphoric – it inspires a sense of well-being and eases feelings of depression. In small doses clary sage alleviates hysteria and paranoia.

Relaxation: Mix 10 drops clary sage, 15 drops lavender, 5 drops lemon in 20ml/4 tsp carrier oil and use as a massage, or use 6 drops of the blend in a bath.

To Help Recover from an Emotional Shock: Mix 2 drops Roman chamomile, 2 drops geranium, 1 drop clary sage, 5 drops rose in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and use as a before bed massage, or add these to a bath before bed. Alternate oil that can be used: valerian.
Use in low concentration as large doses can cause severe headaches and poisoning and can cause drowsiness.

Caution: Avoid during pregnancy. Do not consume alcohol or drive while using this oil.

Clary Sage in Aromatherapy

Botanical Name: Salvia sclarea

Note: Top/Middle

Parts Used: entire herb that grows above ground

Source: steam distillation of the flowering tops and leaves of the ornamental plant native to the Mediterranean region which is related to common sage. Some varieties are distilled from the herbs grown in France.

Description and Odour Effect: a colourless or pale yellow liquid with a sweet, herbaceous-floral scent, not at all like common sage. Its odour effect is uplifting and relaxing; a reputed aphrodisiac.

Blends well with: bergamot, cedarwood, Roman chamomile, cypress, geranium, juniper berry, lavender, orange and other citrus oils, petitgrain, pine and sandalwood.

Applications: application, aroma lamp, bath, inhaler, lightbulb ring, massage, mist spray

Therapeutic Properties: antidepressant, anticonvulsive, antispasmodic, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, astringent, bactericidal, carminative, deodorant, digestive, emmenagogue, euphoric, hypotensive, muscle relaxant, nervine, sedative, stomachic, uterine and nerve tonic.

Safety Data: Avoid during pregnancy. Do not use clary sage oil while drinking alcohol as it can induce a narcotic effect and exaggerate drunkenness.

Chemical Composition

Chemical Composition:

Salvia Sclarea Flos, Fol. [clary] Lamiaceae
Representative constituents
monoterpenes (2–3%) α-pinene 0.1–0.25%, β-pinene 0.3%, sabinene trace, camphene, β-myrcene 0.1–1.7%, α-terpinolene 0.1–0.4%, α-terpinene trace, limonene 0.1–0.8%, trans-β-ocimene 0.4–1%
sesquiterpenes (5%) β-caryophyllene 0.8–3%, germacrene D 1.6–4%, trans-calamenene, α-cubebene trace, α-copaene 0.1–0.5%, β-bourbonene 0.1%
aromatic ar-curcumene, p-cymene trace
monoterpenols (15%) linalool 5–26%, α-terpineol 1%, citronellol, nerol trace-1%, geraniol 0.1–3.2%, borneol, isoborneol, thujol, terpinen-4-ol trace-0.1%
sesquiterpenols α-bisabol, junerol, spathulenol trace
diterpenols (5–7%) sclareol 1–7%
other cis-3-hexanol trace-0.3%, trans-2-hexanol 0.2%, 1-octen-3-ol trace
sesquiterpenals caryophyllenals
other trans-2-hexanal trace-0.1%
monoterpenyl linalyl acetate 49–75%, citronellyl acetate, geranyl acetate 0.3–3.2%, neryl acetate 0.2–1.7%, bornyl acetate 0.2%, α-terpinyl acetate trace-0.1%
other butanoates, valeronates
monoterpenoid 1,8-cineole, trans-linalool oxide trace, cis-linalool oxide trace
sesquiterpenoid caryophyllene oxide 0.2–0.5% diterpenoid sclareol oxide
monoterpenones α-thujone, β-thujone
Coumarins coumarin

Quick Reference – Clary Sage

Skin: acne, boils, dandruff, hair loss, inflamed conditions, oily skin and hair, ophthalmia, ulcers, wrinkles

Circulation, Muscles & Joints: high blood pressure, muscular aches and pains

Respiratory: asthma, throat infections, whooping cough

Digestive: colic, cramp, dyspepsia, flatulence

Genito-urinary: amenorrhoea (absence of the menses), labour pain, dysmenorrhoea (painful menstruation), leucorrhoea

Nervous: depression, frigidity, impotence, migraine, nervous tension and stress-related disorders

Keyword: Euphoric

Clary Sage Magic: Inhale for only a few minutes to achieve a state of euphoria

Clary Sage Harmony

Add these essential oils to 20 ml / 4 teaspoons carrier oil

To boost sexual energy:

  • 4 drops Clary Sage
  • 4 drops Australian Sandalwood
  • 2 drops Jasmine Absolute is free to access and use.
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Home Essentials

  • One drop of lemon essential oil on a soft cloth will polish copper with gentle buffing.
  • When washing out the fridge, freezer or oven, add 1 drop of bergamont, grapefruit, lemon, lime, orange or mandarin essential oil to the final rinse water.
  • Essential oils of Atlas cedarwood, cypress, frankincense, myrrh and vetiver all make wonderful firewood oils. Drop approximately 2-3 drops of oil or blend of your choice on a dried log and allow time for the oil to soak in before putting the log on the fire.
  • Flies and moths dislike lavender oil. Sprinkle it on the outside of your window frames.


Body Essentials

  • Overindulge last night? Essential oils of carrot seed, cedarwood, fennel, grapefruit, juniper berry, lavender and lemon help soften the effects of a hangover. Make your own blend from these oils and use a total of 6-8 drops in a bath.
  • 6 – 8 drops of eucalyptus oil in the bath cools the body in summer and protects it in winter.
  • Add 1 drop geranium oil to your facial moisturizer to bring out a radiant glow in your skin.
  • Place 1 or 2 drops of rosemary on your hair brush before brushing to promote growth and thickness.


Creating a Balanced Blend

For a balanced massage blend, combine the essential oil drops in these proportions of essential oil "notes":

  • 3 drops Base Note
  • 7 drops Middle Note
  • 5 drops Top Note

For a total of 15 drops of essential oils per 30ml (1 oz) of carrier oil.

Top notes are the first impression of the blend; short-lived, yet brilliant. Top notes are sharp, penetrating, first to evaporate, extreme, and either hot or cold. Top notes provide the "ahhhh" in a blend.

Middle notes give body to blends - the developing phase with breadth and variety. Middle notes are warm, round, soft and mellow. Middle notes often provide the bulk, 50% to 80%, of the blend.

Base Notes are the final, lasting message of the blend; they deepen your blend and draw it into the skin, giving it roots and permanence. Base notes are deep, intense, rich and sensual. Base notes should be used sparingly, about 5%, so as not to overpower the blend.

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