Sandalwood - Sandalwood Essential Oil
According to historical records, the earliest usage of the versatile sandalwood was in the form of offerings and incense, in religious ceremonies, during the ancient Vedic times in India. Gradually, through the ages, the specific medicinal properties of sandalwood have been established. The ancient women of India also valued it as a cosmetic aid and for its perfume.
The inner wood of the sandalwood tree is used for extractions. Both the oil and the paste have been used in healing, as tonics, as well as local applications. The paste has a cooling effect and was widely used to relieve prickly heat and other skin conditions. Sandalwood oil itself has many uses. It blends extremely well with other oils and extracts and can easily be added to various formulations.
Sandalwood oil is also used as a fixative in the manufacture of the world's best perfumes. It has a heady, sweet, exotic fragrance and is a perfume in itself. As with many other natural fragrances, the aroma of sandalwood is also said to have a sedative effect on the nerves. In the ancient days, it was used to relieve anxiety, depression and insomnia. Today, sandalwood oil is added to massage oils to relieve stress.
Sandalwood has powerful healing properties and is one of the best known natural antiseptics and germicidals. It is ideal for oily-skin condions. In fact, it has been used to treat seborrhoeic conditions of the skn and scalp. It is also ideal for protective care. One of the most valusble properties of sandalwood is that it helps to improve the normal functions of the skin and scalp. Red sandalwood, or Rakt Chandan, is known for its ability to protect the skin from sun damage and has been included in sunscreens and protective creams.
Due to its versatile actions, sandalwood has been incorporated in many cosmetic products, from moisturisers to rich body cleansers and lotions. The gentle action of sandalwood has also made it ideal for baby care products too. It has also been included in after shave and shaving preparations, due to its antiseptic properties and its subtle, fresh fragrance. It is not only ideal for routine care, but has been usedto treat acne, dermatitis, skin-sensitivity, allergic rashes, irritations, dandruff and pigmented patches.
Sandalwood, which has a long history of safe human usage, is truly one of nature's best cosmetic aids.
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