The Fruit: Bitter Orange
Petitgrain bigarade, and hence petitgrain oil, comes from the bitter orange which originated from China and gradually acclimatized to the warmer conditions of the Mediterranean. This evergreen tree has bright green, aromatic leaves with white flowers, and bitter orange fruit. The oranges are darker and smaller in size compared to sweet oranges. Their culinary uses are widespread. The fruit and peels are used to make delicious marmalades and add aroma to wines and liqueurs, while the zest used used to top decadent chocolate desserts.
Oil extracted from petitgrain bigarade
Petitgrain oils are extracted from the bitter orange tree. It is known as Petitgrain Bigarade or, by its botanical name, Citrus Aurantium. There is often confusion surrounding the name and what parts produce different oils, so let us clear this up for you. Two types of essential oils can be extracted from the tree. Neroli essential oil is produced by distilling the bigarade orange tree’s flowers. And the oil extracted from the leaves and small twigs of the bitter orange through steam distillation gives you the petitgrain bigarade essential oil. No part of this citrus plant is wasted.
Petitgrain bigarade is rich in linalyl acetate, so the essential oil has remedial properties. These healing properties include: antibacterial, antidepressant, anti-anxiety, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, regenerative, regulatory (heart and respiratory muscle problems). The petitgrain oil is therefore used to treat respiratory infections, coughs, and asthma. Furthermore, it is also effective in treating Rheumatoid induced by stress, and chronic inflammatory pain.
Its powerful aromatic fragrance is widely used as a therapeutic agent to treat symptoms of mental fatigue, insomnia, anguish, loneliness, and nervousness. Due to its regulatory properties, specialists also use it to treat hypertension or heart palpitations.
Petitgrain essential oil as a cosmetic product
Petitgrain essential oil is very popular in cosmetic products. This essential oil promotes feelings of comfort, calmness, and mental harmony. Because of its calming agents, the oil is used with great enthusiasm in the perfume industry.
One of the unique characteristics of petitgrain is that it’s very effective in balancing and treating all types of skin problems. This harmonizing oil plays a vital role in curing many skin conditions like blemishes, acne and oily zones. It assists in cleaning up infections and bacteria-filled conditions. Furthermore, it’s an oil used in natural treatments that help prevent excessive sweating and breakouts or pimples.
What’s more, hairdressers use petitgrain oil to treat hair loss or oily, greasy hair because it helps regulate greasy roots caused by an overproduction of sebum.
Because the leaves are distilled this versatile essential oil is non-toxic. The oil may be applied directly on the skin as it is not known to cause sensitivity or irritation. Please note: the use of Citrus Aurantium is not recommended for newborns or women who are less than three months pregnant.