From the fragrant heartwood of the Santalum tree comes a most treasured essence – that of sandalwood, an indescribably warm and sensual fragrance that has mesmerized, soothed and enchanted humans throughout the ages.
Renowned for its use in fine incense, sandalwood is sacred, used for thousands of years by yogis and seekers to elevate their connection to the divine. History records its initial uses in Egypt to embalm mummies and India where it was used for funeral ceremonies in which the sandalwood was placed at the feet of the dearly-departed which was thought to assist their soul in ascension. It was used to build temples in Tibet, China and Nepal and later was introduced to Europe by Arabs who used the oil to perfume leather in Spain and to make ointments and plasters. It was found in pharmacies throughout the Middle Ages, but it was not until the 19th century that it became a coveted ingredient in men’s toiletries and colognes.
Sandalwood, called “Chandan” in Hindi, is extremely important to the ways and culture of India where, for millennia it’s played a significant and sacred role in religious practices and spiritual ceremonies. The wood was used to construct holy temples, the oil to provide unmatched fragrance and to make healing balms and assorted remedies needed to treat colds, skin problems, weakness, fevers, inflammations and more. In Ayurveda, India’s ancient healing system, the powder and oil are used for their relaxing and cooling properties, bringing balance to all three doshas (body constitutions). Sandalwood is antiseptic, purifying and tonifying and as such, its application to the skin is often recommended.
Although there are 18 species of sandalwood trees growing in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Australia, Hawaii and other Pacific Islands, Hawaii is home to six native species which cannot be found anywhere else on Earth! There, the trees are known as “Iliahi. They grow “makai” (oceanside) and “mauka” (mountainside). For the ancient Hawaiian people, the nuts of the ‘Iliahi was a source of food. The wood and oil were used to perfume clothing and treat skin conditions as well as to waterproof precious items and to make musical instruments and tools. In the later part of the 18th century, however, sandalwood became an economic treasure when trade between China and Hawaii made it a highly valued commodity. In fact, it was so important to the Chinese, they referred to Hawaii as “Than Heung Sahn” – the “Sandalwood Mountains”.
Our Hawaiian sandalwood is certified organic and sustainably sourced from the older trees of mountain forests of the Big Island. This is critical for the continuation of these majestic trees! Lying beneath the outer brown bark is the mysterious and fragrant heartwood. But to get to this jewel, the entire tree must be sacrificed. Thus, sustainable sandalwood must come from older, dead and dying trees in order to allow the younger trees to grow and flourish in the sunshine and rain, the salty air from the ocean, and the warm trade winds. Here’s how you can use our Sandalwood essential oil:
- Use a drop of the oil to perfume your body, calling forth feelings of relaxation, well-being and gratitud
- Sandalwood oil helps to release tension and balance the emotions by enhancing well-being and stabilizing your mood
- Use the oil for grounding and calming the emotions and the physical body
- Blend a drop or two with other essential oils or massage oils
- Diffuse the oil with other oils to add elegant fragrance your living space
- Add a little to your facial moisturizer or skin lotion
- A drop or two in a hot bath is a wonderful way to “chill-out” without the chill
- Put a drop in the palm of one hand; rub your hands together; breathe it in several times to delight the senses and sooth the soul
- Try a drop or so mixed into shampoo, conditioner or leave-in conditioner
- Sandalwood oil is wonderful for skin. Use it along with other pure products to soothe inflammation and help minimize blemishes and fine lines
- Hindus often smear sandalwood paste over their foreheads prior to meditation. Try a drop or two of the essential oil smeared across your forehead to enhance your meditation and/or yoga practice
- Bring greater focus to your mind by rubbing a little onto prayer/yoga beads (“japamala”)
Hydrosols are botanical waters made by distilling fresh flowers, fruits, leaves and other parts of particular, desirable plants. Sandalwood hydrosol is formed during the distillation process when the essential oils are separated from the hydrosol – the water or “floral or flower water”, as it is typically known. While fragrant and somewhat similar to essential oils, hydrosols are much less concentrated. Their fragrance is softer, gentler and naturally more diffused. Our Sandalwood hydrosol is made from certified organic, sustainable Hawaiian sandalwood. Here’s how you can use it:
- Spritz your yoga or meditation mat to enhance your practice, summoning greater clarity and focus
- Refresh and uplift your face, neck, chest and arms
- Use as a toner on your face after cleansing to help balance and nourish your skin
- Use as a natural deodorant
- Spray your clothes for a gentle natural perfumed scent
- Spay a bit in a lingerie drawer
- Soothe tired hot feet with a cooling spray
- Use as a substitute for water in your body-care routine
- Spray your pillows and your bed coverings
- Use it after applying makeup to help it set
- Spray on a cotton ball or pad to help remove makeup
- Use along with essential oils and lotions – it’s wonderful to thin down extra thick lotion
- Use as a natural cleaning solution for small, precious items such as jewelry
While external use of sandalwood oil is incredibly safe for most everyone, if you have sensitive skin, do a small patch test before applying. Never consume the oil unless under the care of a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner or herbalist. Essential oils are highly concentrated. Keep away from young children.