Clove bud -  Eugenia caryophyllus

The people of the Molucca Islands were devastated by previously unknown epidemics after the Dutch destroyed all the clove trees ...

Clove bud is a heating, stimulating oil with a sweet-spicy odor and a fruity-fresh top note.

Nature: warming, stimulating

It is best known for its ability to calm a toothache as it reduces pain by numbing the area.

It is an antiseptic and stimulating oil that is useful in a mouthwash or gargle.

It is ideal in massage for improving digestion and as an inhalation for opening the sinus and breathing passages.

Principal Actions: Local anesthetic; mouthwash or gargle; circulatory system and mental stimulant.

Practical Uses

Methods of Use: application, aroma lamp, diffusor, inhaler, lightbulb ring, massage, mist spray

Skin Care with Clove Bud

Caution: Can be mildly irritant or sensitizing; avoid using it in baths or for massage if you have sensitive or allergy-prone skin. Clove bud oil may cause dermatitis in some individuals. Use in moderation only in low dilution (less than 1 per cent).

Clove bud is a strong antiseptic and local anesthetic and is useful for acne, athlete’s foot, bruises, burns, cuts, insect repellent (mosquito), ulcers and wounds.

It is also employed as a first aid measure for toothache (the oil is analgesic) but should never be used long-term as it is a skin irritant and will damage the gums. Whilst awaiting dental treatment, a single drop of the oil can be dropped into the tooth cavity or rubbed into the gums.

For a toothache: Mix 1 drop cloves, 1 drop peppermint, 3 drops Roman chamomile in 5ml/1tsp vegetable oil. Massage on gums around the affected tooth.

Circulation, Muscles & Joints

Clove bud reduces the pain from arthritis and rheumatism by numbing the area.

To numb pain from rheumatoid arthritis: Mix 1 drop clove bud, 1 drop basil, 2 drops niaouli and 2 drops white fir (Abies alba) in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and gently apply to affected joints.

For bursitis: Mix 2 drops clove bud in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and gently apply to affected area.

Aching muscles: Mix 2 drops clove bud, 2 drops cinnamon leaf, 3 drops peppermint, 3 drops black pepper in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and massage into muscles.

Respiratory System

To ease chest coughs: Mix 3 drops clove bud and 4 drops myrtle in a small dark glass bottle and use as an inhalation.

For sinusitis: Mix 2 drops clove bud, 2 drops Canada balsam (Abies balsamea), 3 drops ravensara, 3 drops sweet marjoram in a small dark glass bottle and use as an inhalation.

Digestive System

Clove bud is used as a stomachic because it is a stimulant that aids digestion, relieves flatulence and restores the appetite.

To ease nausea: Mix 3 drops clove bud, 4 drops orange, 2 drops ginger, 2 drops cinnamon leaf in a small dark glass bottle and use as an inhalation.

To relieve bloating and flatulence: Mix 3 drops clove bud, 3 drops bergamot, 3 drops bay leaf and 2 drops basil in a small dark glass bottle and use as an inhalation. Alternately, add 5 drops of this blend to 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and massage onto the abdominal area using clockwise circular strokes.

To ease intestinal cramping: Mix 2 drops clove bud, 2 drops caraway, 3 drops peppermint and 2 drops winter savory in 20ml/4tsp carrier oil and massage onto the abdominal area using clockwise circular strokes.

Immune System

Clove bud can be vaporized as a room scent, or used as a fumigant during infectious illness.

Powerful disinfectant: Mix 2 drops clove bud, 3 drops lemongrass, 3 drops oregano, 3 drops ravensara and 4 drops myrtle and add 5 – 6 drops of this blend to a vaporizer.

Alternatively, prepare a decoction from whole cloves for a vaporizer to perfume rooms. Use in the lowest concentration as it has a high odor intensity.

Nervous System

The odor of clove bud is mood uplifting and a reputed aphrodisiac. It stimulates memory, improves mental clarity, eases guilt, and enhances assertiveness, endurance, strength and determination. Clove bud has been traditionally used as part of an exorcism ceremony and as an assertiveness strengthener.

Concentration and focus: Place 2 drops clove bud on a tissue and inhale.

To alleviate depression: Mix 2 drops clove bud, 2 drops cinnamon leaf, 2 drops clary sage, 2 drops ylang ylang and use as an inhalant or vaporize in a room.

Clove Bud in Aromatherapy

Botanical Name: Eugenia caryophyllus

Note: Middle - 50

Source: Water distillation of the dried flower buds of the slender evergreen tree native to Indonesia. Most supplies of the oil are from Madagascar. Lower grades of clove oil are distilled from the leaves and stems.

Description and Odor Effect: a light amber liquid with a bitter-sweet spicy aroma and a fruity-fresh top note. The odour effect is warming and stimulating.

Blends well with: citrus oils, bay leaf, bergamot, cinnamon leaf, clary sage, lavender, rose, vanilla, ylang ylang

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

Therapeutic Properties: abortifacient, analgesic, anesthetic (local), antiseptic (strong), antispasmodic, anti-neuralgic, carminative, expectorant, disinfectant, insecticide, stimulant (vitality), stomachic, tonic

Safety Data: Non-toxic. Should be avoided during pregnancy. Can be mildly irritant or sensitizing; avoid using it in baths or for massage if you have sensitive or allergy-prone skin. Clove bud oil may cause dermatitis in some individuals. Use in moderation only in low dilution (less than 1 per cent).

The oil from clove bud is the only oil suitable for use in aromatherapy, since it is less irritating than the leaf and stem oils due to the lower eugenol percentage.

Chemical Composition

Chemical Composition:

Syzygium Aromaticum Flos [clove bud] Myrtaceae
Representative constituents 
Hydrocarbons
monoterpenes pinene
sesquiterpenes a- and ß-caryophyllene 5–13%, ß-humulene 0.5–1.5%, a-cubebene 0.01–0.3%, a-copaene 0.01–0.2%, calamenene 0.2–0.5%
Phenols (60–90%) eugenol 36–85%, isoeugenol 0.1–0.25%
Esters (20–25%)
monoterpenyl a-terpinyl acetate 0.1–0.2%, benzyl acetate trace, methyl benzoate 0.04–0.13%
other eugenyl acetate 0.5–12%, 2-nonanyl acetate trace, acetoeugenol 11–21.8%
Oxides
sesquiterpenoid caryophyllene oxide trace-1.8%, humulene epoxide trace

Clove Bud – Quick Reference

Skin: acne, athlete’s foot, bruises, burns, cuts, insect repellent (mosquito), toothache, ulcers, wounds

Circulation, Muscles & Joints: arthritis, rheumatism, sprains

Respiratory: asthma, bronchitis

Digestive: colic, dyspepsia, nausea

Immune: colds, influenza, minor infections

Nervous: depression, mental clarity

Keyword: Energizing

Clove Magic: cloves are burned as an incense to stop others from gossiping about you.

In ancient Persia, clove was used in love potions.

Clove Bud Harmony

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

To boost the immune system:

  • 2 drops Clove Bud
  • 2 drops Cinnamon Leaf
  • 6 drops Mandarin
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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.

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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.

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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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