Orange Oil For Aromatherapy

  • Humaira Patel BSc Honours, Health Sciences, The Open University, UK
  • Zayan Siddiqui BSc in Chemistry with Biomedicine, KCL, MSc in Drug Discovery and Pharma Management, UCL
  • Michika Montaldo Bachelor of Science - BS, Applied Medical Sciences,UCL, UK

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Aromatherapy has been practised for centuries as a holistic healing technique that uses natural plant extracts to promote health and well-being. It employs fragrant essential oils to improve the health of the body and mind, improving both physical and emotional wellness.1 Orange oil, derived from fresh orange rinds, is a popular and versatile aromatherapy essential oil with a pleasant fruit scent and numerous benefits.2

This article aims to delve into the world of orange oil. We will delve into their different varieties, their benefits, and their uses in aromatherapy. Whether you are a seasoned enthusiast or someone who is curious about the scent wafting from your favourite hand soap or candle, this guide will provide valuable insights into how the little citrus fruit can offer substantial benefits.

What is orange oil?

Orange oil is an essential oil derived from the rind of the citrus sinensis fruit. It is a byproduct of orange juice production that is removed via centrifugation to produce cold-pressed oil. The fruit's outer peel is removed, and then the peel is crushed, diced, and pierced to extract as many natural oils as possible. Following this, the mashed-up fruit peel is pushed through a heavy-pressing mill, which extracts the oily liquid into a vessel.1

Varieties of orange oil and their characteristics

There are several different types of orange oil, each with its own unique characteristics.3 For instance:

  • Sweet Orange Oil: Extracted from Citrus sinensis, this is the most commonly used variety in aromatherapy due to its uplifting and invigorating properties.
  • Bitter Orange Oil: Derived from Citrus aurantium, this variety has a more complex aroma and is often used in perfumery. An Asian variety of bitter orange, known as Daidai, is so bitter and acidic that it is not often eaten raw but rather used in essential oils and some regional medicinal purposes.
  • Wild Orange Oil: This type comes from Citrus sinensis trees grown in their natural habitat. It has a rich, fruity scent that is more intense than sweet orange oil.
  • Blood Orange Oil: Extracted from Citrus sinensis ‘sanguinello’, this oil has a rich, tangy aroma that is more intense than regular sweet orange oil.

The composition and characteristics of these varieties can vary significantly depending on their cultivation environments and rootstock influence. Despite these differences, all varieties offer a refreshing scent and numerous benefits, making orange oil a popular choice in aromatherapy.

Benefits of orange oil in aromatherapy

Mood enhancement and relaxation

Orange oil is well-known for its mood-boosting and relaxing effects. It has a nice aroma that is both energising and calming, which can help relieve stress and uplift your mood.1 A study reported that aromatherapy using orange essential oil reduced pulse rate and stress hormone levels in children having dental procedures.4

Support for the immune system

Orange oil is also beneficial to the immune system. It contains potent antiseptic and antibacterial characteristics that can aid in the prevention of both internal and exterior illnesses. Furthermore, it acts as a stimulant and tonic for the body, strengthening the immune system and potentially providing relief from colds and flu.5

Antimicrobial properties

Orange oil's antibacterial characteristics make it excellent at inhibiting the growth of certain bacteria and fungi. 5 According to one study, a 1% quantity of orange essential oil prevented E. coli at refrigerated temperatures.6 Another study discovered that small amounts of orange essential oil killed antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus aureus while having no negative effect on human cells.7

In conclusion, orange oil offers numerous benefits in aromatherapy, ranging from mood enhancement to immune support. It can contribute to overall well-being and health, whether used in a diffuser or applied topically (when properly diluted).

How to use orange oil in aromatherapy

Dilution and application guidelines

Before using orange oil, always dilute it. Use a carrier oil instead of applying it directly to your skin. Begin by combining three drops of essential oil with one teaspoon of carrier oil. For healthy adults, a 2% dilution rate is recommended. 8

Recipes and DIY blends

How to make homemade orange oil

  1. Wash and dry oranges thoroughly.
  2. Peel the orange, and set aside the peels.
  3. Dry the orange peels for a few days to make the orange oil extract more concentrated.
  4. Place your dried orange peels in a container, and pour just enough olive oil into it to cover the orange peels completely.
  5. Set the container aside for two days.
  6. Remove the orange peels and filter the oil into a bottle.

Remember that handmade essential oils are not as concentrated as those purchased in stores, and you should still observe essential oil safety precautions even when producing your own at home.

Creating your own orange oil-based products

Creating your own blends with orange oil can be a fun and rewarding process. Here are a few simple recipes:

  1. Carpet Deodoriser: Mix 1 cup baking soda and 15 drops of orange essential oil
  2. Cinnamon-Orange Sink Scrubber: Combine one cup of baking soda, one tablespoon of ground cinnamon, and five drops of orange essential oil
  3. Natural Orange Cleaner: Pour one litre of water into a large spray bottle, then add three tablespoons of baking soda and 15 drops of orange oil
  4. Orange Oil Room Diffuser: Add ¼ cup of sweet almond oil and 20 drops of orange oil into a glass jar. Place bamboo skewers or reed sticks in a jar and allow them to sit for a couple of hours, flipping the sticks over halfway through. The sticks will absorb the oil and diffuse the scent into the room.

Remember always to do a patch test when trying a new essential oil or blend to ensure you do not have any unwanted reactions.


With its many benefits and uses, orange oil is a versatile addition to the world of aromatherapy. Its mood-enhancing properties, immune system support, and antimicrobial properties make it a valuable natural remedy for various conditions.

Incorporating orange oil into your daily life, whether through a diffuser, a massage, or even in cleaning products, allows you to experience its benefits firsthand. It is not just about the pleasant aroma; it is about enhancing your well-being and making your everyday routines more enjoyable.

In conclusion, aromatherapy with orange oil offers a natural and holistic approach to health. It’s a simple way to enhance your environment and well-being. So whether you are new to aromatherapy or a seasoned enthusiast, there is always room to explore the benefits and uses of orange oil.


  1. Orange oil benefits and uses in perfumery, aromatherapy, and skin care [Internet]. [cited 2023 Sep 28]. Available from:
  2. Volant Europe [Internet]. [cited 2023 Sep 28]. Complete guide to orange essential oil. Available from:
  3. Bond S. Live Eat Learn. 2022 [cited 2023 Sep 28]. 39 types of oranges from a to z(With photos!). Available from:
  4. Jafarzadeh M, Arman S, Pour FF. Effect of aromatherapy with orange essential oil on salivary cortisol and pulse rate in children during dental treatment: A randomized controlled clinical trial. Adv Biomed Res [Internet]. 2013 Mar 6 [cited 2023 Sep 29];2:10. Available from:
  5. Lybrate [Internet]. [cited 2023 Sep 29]. Benefits of orange oil and its side effects. Available from:
  6. Pendleton SJ, Crandall PG, Ricke SC, Goodridge L, O’Bryan CA. Inhibition of beef isolates of E. coli O157:H7 by orange oil at various temperatures. J Food Sci. 2012 Jun;77(6):M308-311
  7. Muthaiyan A, Biswas D, Crandall PG, Wilkinson BJ, Ricke SC. Application of orange essential oil as an antistaphylococcal agent in a dressing model. BMC Complement Altern Med [Internet]. 2012 Aug 16 [cited 2023 Sep 29];12:125. Available from:
  8. Diana. Ultimate guide to diluting essential oils: ratios, charts & more [Internet]. Aromatherapy Anywhere. 2023 [cited 2023 Sep 29]. Available from:

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This content is purely informational and isn’t medical guidance. It shouldn’t replace professional medical counsel. Always consult your physician regarding treatment risks and benefits. See our editorial standards for more details.

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