Elemi Essential Oil

Elemi Essential Oil is derived from the gum or resin of the elemi tree. It has various health benefits, including fighting of infections caused by microorganisms, and treatment of fever, coughs, and colds. The essential oil has varying properties like stimulant, expectorant, and antiseptic. It is also a common ingredient on paint products, perfumes, cosmetics, and soaps.

The elemi tree is a native tree in the Philippines. It is also locally known as the “pili” tree while it is internationally known as Manila elemi. The name elemi was used as a term for the resin on various botanical plants, but it is now a term used for the “pili” tree, which can reach up to 115 feet in height. It has the scientific name canarium luzonicum, and it is under the same family as myrrh and frankincense.

The essential oil is pale yellow in color and it has a citrusy, balsamic, incense-like, and spicy scent. Aside from relieving pain and regulating blood circulation in the system, it is also popular for its powerful effect in treating respiratory issues. Elemi Essential Oil is also believed to have been used by the Egyptians in embalming their dead loved ones.

In Europe, elemi has been used for the treatment of various skin concerns. It helps soothe muscles and prevents signs of aging like wrinkles. For hundreds of years, this has been a common ingredient when making ointments. It is an approved ingredient in the US for food flavoring and food additive. It doesn’t need to be added in a carrier oil, except for people with sensitive skin.

Elemi Essential Oil Benefits

There are various benefits to the use of Elemi Essential Oil, including the following:

  • Relieves pain
  • Improves skin health
  • Heals bruises and cuts
  • Regulates the system’s function
  • Improves blood circulation
  • Prevents infections
  • Cures coughs
  • Treats sinusitis

Elemi Essential Oil Uses

  1. Elemi Essential Oil as Tonic. As a tonic, it ensures the proper functioning of various systems in the body, as well as keeps it away from sickness or disease and infections. This is an effective way for boosting the immune system.
  2. Elemi Essential Oil as Stimulant. This essential oil helps regulate blood circulation and other functions in the body.
  3. Elemi Essential Oil as Expectorant. It treats coughs and eliminates phlegm. You will be able to breathe easier as it can reduce congestion in lungs, nasal tract, and windpipe.
  4. Elemi Essential Oil as Analgesic. This is an effective way of treating various kinds of pain, including but not limited to pain caused by fever, sprain, cold, migraine, and headache. It can also treat joint and muscular pain.
  5. Elemi Essential Oil as Antiseptic. It can prevent the spread or growth of infection due to parasites, viruses, and fungi. The oil can also treat tetanus and sepsis. Aside from treating infections, it is also effective in the treatment of internal infections like stomach, kidney, intestines, colon, urinary bladder, and urinary tract infection.
  6. Elemi Essential Oil as Skin Treatment. It has been used for treating various skin problems and for improving skin health in general.

Elemi Essential Oil Side Effects

Like other essential oils, the use of Elemi Essential Oil may yield side effects although only a few. It is not recommended to be ingested, as it can be toxic. It may cause irritation or rashes for those with sensitive skin. To make sure that you do not get any unwanted reaction, do a skin patch test prior to its use. If your skin was irritated, discontinue its use. It is also not recommended for pregnant moms or children. While it is generally safe for use on animals, it is still recommended to consult a veterinarian for this.

How to Use Elemi Essential Oil

There are different ways on how elemi essential is used, such as the following:

  • Applying directly on affected body part.
  • Inhaling directly to relieve stress and other negative feelings.
  • Adding in diffuser for relaxation.
  • Blend with carrier oil for massage and aromatherapy.
  • Add on warm water to inhale steam for treating sinusitis and catarrh.

How to Make Elemi Essential Oil

Resin from the elemi tree is collected through the process called tapping. The resin collected is cleaned to ensure that it is free from the debris of the bark. It then undergoes the process called steam distillation, which extracts the essential oil from the resin. Another method of producing Elemi Essential Oil is through solvent extraction.

Elemi Essential Oil Recipe

Elemi Essential Oil is used for meditation and for relaxing the body and mind. Here’s a recipe that you can use for these. It can be inhaled or applies as topical solution.


  • 3 drops of neroli or rose
  • 6 drops of sandalwood
  • 6 drops of elemi oil
  • Diffuser
  • 30 ml jojoba oil for inhalation or topical application


  1. Combine neroli or rose, sandalwood, and Elemi Essential Oil.
  2. Use diffuser for aromatherapy.
  3. For direct inhalation or topical, add the mixture to 30 milliliters of jojoba oil.   

Where to Buy Elemi Essential Oil

Elemi Essential Oil is available on your local health shops, or nearby essential oil stores. It is also easily available online. Make sure that you are purchasing 100% pure Elemi Essential Oil from a reputable seller or site. Some of the leading Elemi Essential Oil brands are Silky Scents, Healing Solutions, and Plant Therapy.

More Information on Elemi Essential Oil

  • Elemi is also known as the “poor man’s frankincense” because they both came from the same genus of plant and their similarity on their uses and properties.
  • This essential oil strengthens the mind and body in times of stress.
  • JJ Wecker was a 17th century doctor who used this plant on soldiers.
  • Make sure to do a skin patch test prior to its use. Apply a small amount of this oil on a small part of the skin and observe if there are any unwanted reactions, such as rashes or swelling.
  • It is used as an ingredient on skin products of luxury brands like Marc Jacobs, Ralph Lauren, Chanel, and Estee Lauder.
  • This essential oil blends well with floral oils like geranium, neroli, lavender, and clary sage; resin oils like myrrh and frankincense, spice oils, and citrus oils like bergamot, and grapefruit.
  • Its initial aroma varies from medium to strong scent.
  • The term elemi means “above and below” in the Arabic language.