OILS OF THE MONTH: HELICHRYSUMS
The genus name Helichrysum comes from the Greek words helios, meaning ‘sun’, and chrysos, meaning ‘gold’, fitting since many of the some 600 species have golden flower-heads. The extracts and essential oils of Helichrysum species have demonstrated promising anti-oxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory activity. In South Africa, the genus Helichrysum is widely used in traditional medicine.
Cape Fynbos Oils now produce four Helichrysum fynbos oils:Helichysum odoratissimum
This is the strongest smelling helichrysum - dense, herbaceous, mint and cloves.The plant itself is a scraggily sort, with beautiful yellow flowers. It is used in the perfume industry and makes an excellent insect repellent. This study provides scientific validation for the traditional use of H. odoratissimum as a possible treatment for acne, based on direct antimicrobial effects, making it a fantastic botanical to use in skincare.
H. patulum has stunning grey foliage and strongly honey-scented summer flowers that look and feel papery.
The scent profile is oud, soft mint, pepper, citrus, cloves, herbaceous, honey. A unique and complex scent profile used in perfumery and cosmetics. Besides the inflorescence, the other parts of the plant, particularly the curry smell leaves can be extracted since they have significant content of active metabolites which are used in food industry as dietary supplement ingredients.
H. Splendidum can be described quite simply as splendid! The plant has a mass of golden flowers nestled in glimmering silvery foliage. This is an exciting green oil with a floral fragrance that is rapidly becoming known and demanded in the market. The aromatic profile is sweet, herbaceous, dill. This special fragrance is the true hallmark of fynbos.
Helichrysum petiolare, also known as silver-bush everlasting flower, is a rare variety of Helichrysum native to the western part of South Africa. The plant boasts soft, dense and aromatic foliage covered in silver hairs, blooming with creamy flowers towards the end of the year. This oil has an unusual aroma - herbaceous and musky, with balsamic hints. Although a relatively new oil, H petiolare has garnered substantial attention in anti-aging skincare due to its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory antimicrobial properties.