We all love tea tree oil for its amazing ability to cleanse away unwanted dirt and grime.
But there’s another oil that some say works even better: lemon myrtle oil.
It smells wonderfully lively and lemony—most say even more so than regular lemon oil—but this little oil can do a lot more than freshen the air.
Read on to see just why we added this oil to our Citrus Mint Cleanser, and why—if you’re suffering from sensitive skin—this may be the oil for you.
What is Lemon Myrtle?
Scientifically named Backhousia citriodora, lemon myrtle is a tree that grows in the subtropical rainforests of central and southeastern Queensland, Australia. It can grow up to 66 feet high, with evergreen leaves and white flowers that grow in clusters.
The oil comes from these leaves, which when crushed give off the lemony smell. It is the highest natural source of “citral,” a compound that gives off a citrus scent and also has strong cleansing properties.
Australians used lemon myrtle for cooking and for healing. It’s still used today to flavor shortbread, pasta, fish, ice cream, cooking oils, and teas.
Lemon Myrtle is a Powerful Cleanser
Lemon myrtle, like tea tree, is an extremely powerful cleanser.
Lemon myrtle can be harsh on the skin, though, so if you want to use it with any skin condition, just be sure you dilute it with a carrier oil (read more about carrier oils here).
Lemon Myrtle Oil’s Other Benefits
Lemon myrtle doesn’t just cleanse. Here are some other ways that it benefits skin:
- Reduces clogged pores: As mentioned above, lemon myrtle oil cleanses, which is why we put it in our Citrus Mint Cleanser. If you’re fighting oily skin, try using this cleanser on a daily basis and see if it helps.
- Balances oily skin: While it’s cleansing, lemon myrtle oil helps balance natural oils that can lead to occasional breakouts.
- Reduce the appearance of pores: Lemon myrtle can help reduce the appearance of pores large pores—great for combination and oily skin types.
- Makes you smell great: Even if you don’t like the smell of lemon in general, lemon myrtle may change your mind. Because of its high concentration of citral, it has a more clear and clean lemon smell that may just win you over. Mix it with your favorite moisturizing oil and apply to your skin for a refreshing scent.
- Helps boost your mood: This oil is said to be uplifting and stimulating. Used in aromatherapy, it can help restore that spring in your step.
If you’re suffering from some congestion this spring, you may also want to try some lemon myrtle in steam inhalation. It’s reputed to help clear up the sinuses and to help alleviate tension. Some say that using the oil in aroma lamps also helps cut down on the sniffles the family experiences in any particular season. You can also add some to your bath before bed to help you breathe more easily overnight.
Note: Avoid using lemon myrtle on broken skin, and always dilute to avoid skin irritation.