Fine High Alpine Lavender essential oil, produced from flowers naturally grown in the mountain regions of France, is considered the most exquisite of this variety. It is the same plant species as other Lavenders, simply extracted from specimens grown in its native higher elevations where the plant tends to produce the greatest amount of the fragrant oil.
Lavender grown at high altitudes also tend to produce more 'linalool', a natural constituent of many essential oils that has been the subject of many studies involving improved sleep, lowering anxiety and lessening stress. We've sampled several Lavenders, and found this one to be very 'complete', with a great depth to its aroma. Its aroma is somewhat more earthy compared to our wildcrafted variety.
Lavender in general is the most versatile aromatic oil used in aromatherapy today, often called 'medicine chest in a bottle' - no wonder it is suggested it be included in every aromatherapy kit. The essential oil is a nearly colorless, with a fragrant, sweet floral-herbaceous scent and a slight woody undertone. Lavender blends well with most oils, especially citrus like Sweet Orange, florals like Ylang Ylang and Geranium, and with woody scents like Cedarwood, and Pine.
Lavender essential oil is highly regarded for its relaxing effect on the nervous system, with an overall balancing effect on the mind and the emotions. Besides being versatile, its lightly floral
and soothing scent is one that most people find appealing, and is often used as a perfume. It is also one of the few essential oils that can be safely applied neat in all situations (i.e. without being diluted in a carrier
oil - another notable exception being Roman Chamomile). Applying directly to the feet can have a wonderful calming effect on many individuals. Adding
to a foot bath can have a marked effect on relieving fatigue. Lavender has been studied for its ability to help restful, deep sleep; one clinical report noted Lavender oil to be better than Valium in helping folks get a good night's rest. One can diffuse Lavender in their bedroom or just sprinkle a few drops on the sheets for this effect.
Lavender is one of the few oils still listed in the British Pharmacopoeia; it is highly regarded for it's ability to promote tissue regeneration and speed wound healing in some cases.
This oil truly began the modern essential oil revolution - It was in the middle of the last century that the term 'Aromatherapy' was coined by French cosmetic chemist Rene-Maurice Gattefosse - Dr. Gattefosse
discovered the healing properties of Lavender when, after burning his hands in a laboratory accident, he submersed them in the flower's essential oil. His amazingly speedy recovery prompted him to write his book
'Aromatherapy' in 1937. Now we don't recommend you try this at home - though we'd love to hear of your ways you enjoy this wonderful oil!
Lavender is one of the most simple essential oils to gain benefits from. It is most often used in a diffuser for improved sleep, but it is just as simple to sprinkle a few drops of the oil on the bed sheets before retiring. Use just one drop under the pillow for children. Lavender is also a perfect oil to have with you throughout the day ~ we've noticed a quick and significant change in attitudes under stressful situations after inhaling its aroma. Lavender has a very healing effect on skin as well; it seems the same soothing it brings to the mind and emotions also happens to the skin. It can be used 'neat' (undiluted) to immediately reduce the pain of burns, mixed 50:50 with Tea Tree for an excellent soothing antiseptic (apply directly or onto a band-aid). It is also called for in many skin and hair recipes at concentrations between 1% and 3%.
Linalool, the primary natural constituent of Lavender essential oil has recently been the subject of a study for anti-cancer activity. Linalool was shown to have potent anti-tumorial effects on a commonly studied Liver cancer cell line. The results were summarized thusly: Linalool was the most potent and HepG2 cells the most sensitive. A 50% and 100% decrease in the viability of HepG2 was obtained at 0.4muM and 2muM linalool, respectively. This is a VERY low concentration of linalool -- while this does not describe a protocol of the use of Lavender essential oil for anti-cancer applications, it does show the as yet untapped potential of essential oils as medicine.
Linalool is considered the sweet component of Lavender's aroma. There have been many studies produced describing the anti-anxiety effects of Linalool -- even a study showing it can significantly lower aggression in animals, and more than likely humans as well. And besides aggression, its an excellent choice for helping kids calm down, and just generally 'taking the edge off'. This High Alpine variety is really a very nice oil -- many folks consider it their favorite Lavender.