5 Uses for Clove Essential Oil
Clove essential oil has a warm, spicy-sweet aroma. It comes from the clove plant, which is indigenous to India and Indonesia. The leaves, stems, and buds of the clove plant can all be used to produce the oil. However, clove oil derived from the bud is most commonly used in aromatherapy and skin care; oil produced from the stems and leaves of the plant have stronger chemical compositions and are therefore more likely to cause irritation. Verefina clove essential oil is produced from the clove bud.
Clove essential oil has a number of different properties. According to a study published on PubMed, “in addition to its antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-fungal, and antiviral activity, clove essential oil possesses anti-inflammatory, cytotoxic, insect repellent, and anesthetic properties." These properties make clove essential oil ideal for a range of applications.
Clove oil has historically been used to relieve minor toothaches. It has both analgesic and antibacterial properties. A study done in Argentina found that clove essential oil diluted to .4% inhibits the microorganisms Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. It is therefore useful for some oral infections. Clove oil’s active compound, eugenol, works also as a natural anesthetic, numbing sensitive or painful areas. Eugenol is also known for its ability to lower inflammation.
To use clove oil for tooth pain, mix one drop of clove essential oil with 1/8 tsp. of a carrier oil, such as Fractionated Coconut Oil. Dip a cotton swab in the mixture, and apply to the affected area. Please note that clove oil may not always treat the cause of a toothache, so it is important to see a dentist if the pain continues. Clove oil should never be taken internally in large doses.
2. Maintaining Healthy Teeth and Gums
Because of its contribution to oral health, clove oil is also sometimes found in toothpastes and mouthwashes. You can make your own Herbal Mouthwash with 100% natural ingredients. Here's what you need and how to make it.
Put the herbs in a clean glass jar with a tight-fitting lid. Pour the water over them. The water needs to be hot in order to release the properties of the herbs. Allow the water to cool, then add the essential oils, and put the lid on the jar. (Be sure to let it cool completely, as heat can damage essential oils.)
Leave in a dark place overnight. The next day, strain the herbs with a fine mesh strainer. Add the xylitol (if using), and shake gently to dissolve it. Store the mouthwash in your jar in a cool dark place. To use, pour a small amount into a cup, and swish for 30 seconds. Use within two weeks.
3. Athlete’s Foot
As I noted above, clove oil possesses antibacterial properties; but it is also an anti-fungal, making it useful for the treatment of fungal infections such as athlete’s foot.
To help heal athlete's foot, mix 10 to 12 drops of clove essential oil (or equal parts clove, tea tree, and frankincense oils) with one ounce of a carrier oil, such as jojoba, almond, or Fractionated Coconut Oil, and apply to affected areas with a cotton ball. Use caution if you have several symptoms, broken skin, or ulcers on the feet.
4. Repelling Insects and Dust Mites
Clove oil can also be used to repel insects in general and mosquitos in particular.
To discourage insects from entering the house, put a few drops of clove oil on cotton balls, and place them around your home. Or add several drops of clove oil to a diffuser, and run as needed. Peppermint essential oil can be used the same way.
Clove essential oil can also be used to get rid of dust mites on sheets, mattresses, and upholstered furniture. A 2006 study found that several essential oils, including clove, are effective against the house dust mite D. pteronyssinus. This species of dust mite, along with one other one, make up about 80 to 90% of the total mite population. Dust mites are a major trigger of allergic reactions and respiratory allergies, especially in humid regions. Therefore, limiting dust mite populations is critical for many allergy sufferers. While synthetic chemicals are effective against mites, they may also pose threats to human health. The 2006 study found that clove essential oil, as well as rosemary and eucalyptus oils, are viable natural alternatives to these chemicals.
To rid sheets of dust mites with clove essential oil, wash them in hot water, then rinse in cold water. During the rinse cycle, add 20 to 25 drops of clove essential oil to the water. (You want to add the essential oil to cold water because, as was mentioned above, high heat can damage essential oils). If the smell of the clove oil is too strong for you, you can do a second rinse.
For mattresses and upholstered furniture, mix two cups of baking soda with 20 drops of essential oil (you can use clove oil by itself, or a combination of clove, rosemary, and eucalyptus oils) in a jar. Shake well to blend. Using a fine mesh sifter, sift the mixture over the mattress or furniture. Leave for at least one hour, then thoroughly vacuum all of the baking soda up.
Alternatively, you can add five drops of liquid soap and 30 drops of clove, eucalyptus, or rosemary essential oils (or a combination of two or three of these oils) to two cups of distilled water. Spray on furniture, beds, curtains, and/or carpets several times a week or daily to keep dust mites at bay (recipe adapted from Joe Filter blog).
5. Antioxidant Support
Clove essential oil contains potent antioxidant compounds. In fact, clove oil has 30 times more antioxidants per gram than blueberries! Antioxidants help prevent cellular damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that develop in the body as a result of exposure to environmental toxins and ultraviolet rays as well as due to normal metabolic processes. Free radicals can cause serious damage to our tissues over time, which is why antioxidants are so important to lifelong health. Antioxidants can also provide protection against harmful bacteria and viruses.
For these reasons, clove essential oil is an important ingredient in our Immunity Line. In addition to clove, our Immunity products also contain cinnamon, rosemary, lemon, and eucalyptus oils, which provide antioxidant support as well.
With so many health and household uses, you'll want to make clove essential oil a part of your natural medicine cabinet!
Warnings: Clove oil can cause liver and respiratory problems when consumed in large doses. Clove oil should be avoided if you are pregnant or nursing. ALWAYS dilute clove essential oil when using topically.
How do you use clove essential oil? Tell us below!
Axe, Josh. "Athlete's Foot: Common Signs and 4 Home Remedies." Dr. Axe. Web. 11 April 2017.
Axe, Josh. "Clove Oil Uses and Benefits." Dr. Axe. Web. 11 April 2017.
Chaieb K., Hajlaoui H., Zmantar T., Kahla-Nakbi AB, Rouabhia M., Mahdouani K., Bakhrouf A."The chemical composition and biological activity of clove essential oil, Eugenia caryophyllata (Syzigium aromaticum L. Myrtaceae): a short review.” PubMed. June 2007. Web. 6 April 2017.
“Clove Bud Oil Vs. Clove Oil Uses Compared!” eNatural Healing. 17 December 2012. Web. 6 April 2017.
"Essential Oils to Repel Household Dust Mites." The Joe Filter Blog. 17 June 2015. Web. 6 April 2017.
El-Zemity Saad, Rezk Hussien, Farok Saher, and Zaitoon Ahmed. “Acaricidal activities of some essential oils and their monoterpenoidal constituents against house dust mite, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus(Acari: Pyroglyphidae).” PubMed. 17 November 2006. Web. 6 April 2017.
Hall, Terri. “Toothache Relief: Oil of Cloves.” Care2. 4 February 2010. Web. 6 April 2017.
Mercola, Joseph. "Choose Clove Bud Oil for Better Dental Health." Mercola.com. 2 February 2017. Web. 11 April 2017.
O'Connor, Anahad. "Remedies: Clove Oil for Tooth Pain." The New York Times. 17 February 2011. Web. 6 April 2017.
About the Author
Katie Zapotoczny is a Verefina Affiliate and the creator of An Ever Green Life, a blog that seeks to empower readers to make changes that will improve their health and help protect our environment.