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Lemon Essential Oil, its properties and safe usage

The Lemon essence is an essential oil for all purposes. It is used for both cleaning the house as it is to cleanse your organism. Its purifying and detoxifying properties make it the perfect choice for skins tending to be oily, for strengthening brittle nails and hair or to boost weight loss.

Lemon essential oil is extracted through cold pressure using the outer layer of the lemon skin. That is why it is often referred to as an essence rather than an EO (obtained by distillation).

The yield is not very high, because it takes about 3 000 lemons to obtain one kilo of the essence.

As the case may be, the lemon essential oil is part of the EOs and is indispensable in family aromatherapy thanks to its low price and its versatility. And this, even though one can show some reservation given its irritant and photo-sensitive character.


Composition and counter-indications

Lemon belongs to the Rutaceae family, all of which are photo-sensitive. Except for the distillation of the leaves and the flowers.

  • Monoterpenes:limonene (55-75%), alpha & beta pinene (5-15%) gamma terpinenes (5-15%),
  • Aldehydes (2-3%): hexanal, heptanal, octanal, nonanal, geranial
  • Sesquiterpenes: beta bisabolene (2,5-4%)
  • Coumarins et furocoumarins (>1-2%)

Lemon EO contains many allergenic components:

Monoterpenes (up to 80%-90% if they are all included) are not particularly good for the skin. They are dermo-caustic, which means that they can cause burns and, in addition, be potentially more allergenic through the cutaneous route.

-Terpenic Aldehydes (geranial): irritating for the skin – never apply purely to the skin.

-Furocoumarins = photo-sensitive = beware of applying to the skin.

Counter-indications :

  • Forbidden for babies and pregnant women in the first 3 months
  • Never apply pure. Dilute to the equivalent of 20% maximum for 80% of VO.
  • Photo-sensitive, do not go into the sun after usage. If you want to avoid irreversible stains to the skin, count at least 6 to 8 hours between usage and sun exposure. The best idea is therefore to use it at night before going to bed.


Lemon essential oil properties

Monoterpenes are numerous and give their properties to our lemon essence and its olfactive characteristics. These are:


=> perfect for cleaning (floor cleaning, WCs, basins in the bathroom, etc.)

♦Antibacterial (on streptococci) and antiviral

=> in diffusion to purify ambient air.


Aldehydes have anti-inflammatory and soothing properties


This essential oil has also interesting properties regarding;

♦digestion (stomach, gas). It drains the liver, intestines and pancreas.

=> cure to help the body in eliminating toxins.


and blood circulation (venal tonic, fluidifies the blood). It strengthens blood vessels, allowing the blood to flow more effectively inside the veins.

=> acts against phlebitishaemorrhoids

Read about the different citrus oils HERE


Usage and administration routes of lemon essential oil

The information provided could not be considered as medical information nor engage Pacific Scents’ responsibility as to your usage of essential oils for yourself or anyone else. Therefore, we strongly invite you to compare the information with that of authoritative experts and the opinion of health professionals

All routes are possible: cutaneous route, oral route, inhalation and diffusion. However, this EO can be aggressive to the skin.


internalLemon EO by oral route

Yes, but diluted.

minus signYou do not swallow lemon essential oil pure or diluted in water (!!!).

Reminder: EOs are not soluble in water. Knowing that it is caustic to your skin, means that it is also caustic to your mucous.

Usage in dilution (in oil, on a sugar cube, in honey or any neutral tablet)

For problems of hepatic impairment, nausea, vomiting, in cases of travel sickness or to fight obesity (people believe it suppresses hunger)…

Finally, it can be used in the kitchen to flavour a dish (can be diluted in a fatty sauce such as oil or cream)


diffusionAerial route


For relaxation, or in case of stress. This EO is both calming and stimulating.

Its greatest advantage is that it will relax you without making you numb.

It is recommended for the nervous type of people or people who are suffering from burnout.


Useful if experiencing a cold snap, the beginning of a cold or any infection of the respiratory tract.


To make the most of its anti-stress properties while remaining passive, such as in an office where one works for example. In winter its anti-bacterial properties may help prevent illnesses.

It can also be included in a household homemade product and also not expensive when the expiry date has been exceeded for example.

dermal allowedCutaneous route

Not advised

Or if used, should be heavily diluted. It is effective if used with other EOs such as in the case of cellulite (active on the circulation). And remember to only do so at night (photo-sensitive).

lemon essential oil properties

The benefits of lemon essential oil

It is the real lemon in this little bottle, with all its acidity, the same perfume as when you chop up lemon zest in the kitchen. The energy that emanates from it makes you smile and you feel happy.

1/ the benefits of lemon essential oil on the skin

Lemon EO is often used in cosmetics, especially in products for oily skins, or skins that are tired and stressed. It allows to stretch the skin while being a tonic for conjunctive tissue such as wrinkles or cellulite. It can also be used to treat brittle nails.

Do not sunbake after using lemon essential oil on your skin. Use it preferably at night.

Cellulite and lemon essential oil


It is a great ally to get rid of this unsightly orange peel appearance.

For a better result against cellulite, use lemon essential oil in conjunction with cypress essential oil as in the following recipe:


Use this mixture in massage on the concerned zones, morning and night.

Regulating the excess of sebum

Thanks to its astringent property, the lemon essential oil can also be a great help in removing excess of sebum. It is a natural and very efficient remedy for oily skin and can therefore protect the skin from pimples, blackheads and dilated pores.

Mix it with vegetable oil or face cream.


long hairIt is one of the most effective EOs against dandruff. Its astringent quality helps eliminate the excess of sebum in hair.

Recommendation: oily hair.

Mix it in your shampoo (10 drops lemon EO + 20 drops tea tree EO in 100ml shampoo)

2/ benefits for the immune system

immune systemThanks to its high tenure in vitamin C, the lemon essential oil is well known for its ability to improve blood circulation and for its effect of stimulating white blood cells.

Lemon EO disinfects the air. It is a powerful antiseptic of the respiratory tract and is used to fight against all types of infections, colds, head colds, hay fever, coughs, laryngitis, sore throats, bronchitis, asthma and flu.


In atmospheric diffusion.

diffusionDiffuse for 15 minutes morning and night during the winter season to purify the air in the home, to get rid of nasty viruses. You can add ravintsara or tea tree essential oils.


3/ helpful to a feeling of wellbeing

Lemon essential oil is a good overall tonic with plenty of stimulating virtues.

Recommendation: fatigue or feeling depressed.

By stimulating the nervous system, it:


  • clears the mind,
  • clarifies emotional conflicts,
  • fights against apathy
  • and confusion and favours calmness and wellbeing.

Atmospheric diffusion


  • In your workspace: to boost your concentration, improve your mood and relieve stress, your mental fatigue and your feeling of anxiety.
  • In your bedroom, to fight insomnia


4/ benefits for the digestive system

digestive systemThanks to its carminative effect, the lemon essential oil is used against flatulence and intestinal gas.

Recommendation against:

  • Stomach acidity: to soothe stomach ulcers and hyperacidity because, contrarily to common belief, lemon is not an acid but an alkaline
  • Abdominal cramps


It boosts:

  • The appetite regulates digestion and fights common digestive problems.
  • The liver functions and regulates the hepatobiliary function. It is a cleansing and tonic for the liver.
  • The gall bladder and the pancreas, allowing the elimination of toxins in the organism.

It prevents intestinal, renal and urinary infections and it can be useful for

  • people with high cholesterol readings,
  • diabetics,
  • people with stress and those with deficient blood circulation,


recipePossible usage: Place 1 drop of lemon essential oil on a neutral tablet or in a teaspoon of honey and let it melt in the mouth. Repeat 3 times a day before a meal. Ideally as a cure of 3 weeks.

Did you know? Lemon essential oil blends very well with peppermint essential oil to improve digestion.


It can help in the attempt of weight loss: lemon essential oil favours the destruction of lipids.

It is also effective against nausea and is very useful in cases of travel sickness (in diffusion in the car for example).


5/ for an ‘all natural’ house-cleaning product


Disinfectant and antiseptic, lemon essential oil is also ideal in the house (cleaning of floors, kitchen area, bathroom, toilets, etc.)



Citrus essences are more fragile and keep for a shorter time. Indeed, it is advised not to use them beyond 3 years as the components of the oil change with time and could be the cause of allergies.

Keep away from heat.

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