Balsam Copaiba Essential Oil at a Glance


Balsam Copaiba Copaifera officinalis is gaining popularity and for good reason. Copaiba is the balsam (oleoresin) tapped from the trunk of the Copaiba tree, a genus of Copaifera, that accumulates in the cavities of the tree trunk. The process is like tapping for syrups. It’s an incredible source that can be harvested without concern of sustainability. When it’s harvested, it’s a clear, thin liquid. Once it is in contact with air, it becomes a beautiful golden light brown and thickens. Around 90% of Brazil’s resin is used for essential oil production. The term balsam is a solution of plant-specific resins in plant-specific solvents (essential oils). Copaiba balsam Copaifera officinalis was the first species described on record and is the most commonly used for essential oil. Copaiba has a soft resinous, earthy, sweet, sensual aroma that you’ll fall in love with. Plants and their essentials oils have powerful therapeutic properties. The molecules are made of chemical families, with the gentle sesquiterpenes being dominant in Copaiba. Within these families are the components (constituents) that give essential oils and their parent plants the aroma and therapeutic actions. Copaiba essential oil has a high content of the constituent Caryophellane (beta, trans and humulene), which is known for its powerful analgesic properties. The Copaifera officinalis can have up to 87% b-caryophellane, older sources showing around 53%. There was very little research into Copaiba essential oil until recently with the referenced article, Copaifera of the Neotropics: A Review of the Phytochemistry and Pharmacology was published May 18, 2018. (1) New biological studies have been published that go some way to unraveling the action mechanism of the isolated sesquiterpenes and diterpenes in Copaiba. In the 2018 study, it stated that the oleoresins from Copaifera species (copaiba) have been used by native peoples of the Amazon region for thousands of years in pain creams and solutions. It showed to have remarkable biological activities which included antibacterial, antiparasitic, antineoplastic, and anti-inflammatory activities. The resins are also composed of diterpene acids, which are responsible for many of the observed biological activities. Although it’s only certain isolates that metabolize in the body, it is the total essential oil makeup (constituents) that effects the aroma and overall therapeutic properties. If you use and dilute your oil accordingly, Copaiba has no known safety concerns.

If you use and dilute your oil accordingly, Copaiba has no known safety concerns.

WAYS TO USE YOUR COPAIBA

Ways to use Your Copaiba

Respiratory infections and symptoms may be reduced by Copaiba. Copaiba acts as an expectorant, easing coughs and bronchial inflammations. It also has anti-bacterial properties that can help combat bacterial infections.

You could try the following blend in a diffuser by adding 15 drops or according to your diffuser directions, and diffuse 30-60 minutes on, with 30-minute breaks.

Option two inhalation by direct inhalation from the bottle or make your own personal inhalers.

Essential oil inhalers are available on Amazon or Aromatic suppliers. Add 15 drops of the following to one inhaler and inhale as needed. You can use Copaiba on its own or in a blend. Since it is a thicker essential oil, it works well with thinner oils in inhalers.

  • 5 Drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 Drops Lavender Lavendula angustifolia

  • 5 Drops Tea Tree Melaleuca alternifolia

  • 5 Drops Cedarwood Juniperus virginiana

Reducing allergies starts by knowing what is causing the symptoms. To treat the symptoms, we must know the cause. For the symptoms such as runny nose, cough, and congestion from allergies, try the following blend:

For Kids

  • One-ounce olive oil or unscented lotion

  • 3 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 drops Lavender Lavendula Angustifolia

  • 3 drops Ravensara Ravensara aromatica

Directions: Apply to chest and neck (or back area) as needed, especially before going outside.

For Adults:

  • One-ounce olive oil or unscented lotion

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 drops Ravintsara Cinnamomun camphora ct. 1,8 cineole

  • 5 drops Tea Tree Melaleuca alternifolia

  • 9 drops Cedarwood Juniperus virginiana

Directions: Apply to chest and neck (or back area) as needed, especially before going outside. This is a 3% blend. Due to the content of 1,8-cineole, this blend is not safe for children under the age of ten years old.

Immune Support: Like many oils, Copaiba can be supportive to our immune systems. Studies have shown the immunomodulatory effects of Copaiba officinalis. However, a weak or sick immune system needs more than aromatic support. Eating healthy, exercise and making other smart healthy choices will not only help support our immune system but keep it healthy as well. Try blending Copaiba with Citrus oils. Citrus oils contain the highest content of d-limonene, which helps to activates white blood cells and is an immunostimulant and anti-bacterial and more.

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 drops Sweet Orange Citrus Sinesis

  • 5 drops Spearmint Mentha spicata

Reducing Nerve Inflammation: A clinical trial was performed on the oil-resin of Copaifera reticulata and it was hypothesized that Copaiba resin-oil showed an anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective agent in an acute damaged CNS (central nervous system). This study was done in 2012 and since, further studies have proven Copaiba anti-inflammatory actions, including the most recent study, May 2018. Copaiba contains the chemical family sesquiterpenes which includes the constituent β-caryophyllene, most likely responsible for the anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects described. (4)

I have Fibromyalgia and find this same blend effective in relieving local isolated pain associated with it.

Use Copaiba in the following blend:

Pain and Inflammation

  • One-ounce carrier oil or unscented lotion

  • 10 Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 10 drops Scotch Pine Pinus sylvestris

  • 5 drops Plai Zingiber cassumunar

  • 5 drops Cannabis sativa

For arthritis related aches and pains, using the previously mentioned blend will not only ease inflammation and in turn reduce pain, it will also allow damaged tissue time to heal or to avoid possible future tissue damage. Arthritis and Gout have also been known to be diet related. Check with your physician, nutritionist or do research in what foods to avoid that may contribute to your inflammation as well as foods that may help ease your inflammation.

Pain Relief

  • 1-ounce Trauma oil (or another carrier)

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officianalis

  • 5 drops Hemlock Tsuga canadensis

  • 5 drops White Pine Pinus strobus

  • 10 drops Balsam Fir Abies balsamea

Moisturize your dry skin by using 0.2-1.5% copaiba essential oil/carrier oil blend to moisturize dry skin. You can use up to 4-10% for acute or chronic spot treatment (short term only) and 1.5-3%% for over-all body treatment. Its emollient properties are deeply moisturizing. You can use any carrier oil you prefer with copaiba balsam oil. However, because of Babassu healing properties, it’s great for skin products. It is high in linolenic acids and used in many cosmetic and skin-care products. Using Babassu with Jojoba will help protect and heal your skin. The addition of essential oils that are also known for their antimicrobial properties, and that includes Copaiba, will help to accelerate the healing actions of the Babassu oil.

Dry Skin Relief

  • 1/4 -Ounce Babassu Oil

  • ¾ -Ounce Jojoba Oil

  • 2 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 4 drops Palmarosa Cymbopogon martini var. motia

  • 5 drops Patchouli Pogostemon cablin

Blend. Apply to your skin as often as needed, up to 4 times a day.

Acne can be many issues including hormone-related or diet related. If you suspect that your acne could be caused by an internal issue, seek your physicians advise in these areas.

Findings oils and products that do not clog the sebaceous glands is of the utmost importance. Although coconut oil is loved by many, it also has comedogenic properties, meaning it can clog pores. Using referenced list will help you avoid ingredients or products that may attribute to acne. Anything in red should be avoided so you are not contributing to your acne issue. (6)

Copaiba’s anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties as well as wound healing properties well help heal acne and acne scars. For spot treatment, you can use anywhere from 4-10%, depending on what oils you use, sensitivity and age. This blend is a 3%. If not effective, go up 1% at a time to find your threshold.

Acne Spot Treatment

  • 1-ounce carrier oil (jojoba or olive is best)

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 drops Tea Tree Melaleuca alternifolia or Manuka Leptospermum scoparium

  • 3 drops Geranium Pelatgonium roseum x asperum

  • 5 drops Helichrysum Helichrysum italicum

More than recommended is not suggested since it will not resolve your problem any quicker or more efficiently. It will, however, raise your chances of a negative reaction rather than a therapeutic response.

Because of the healing properties of these oils, your skin will clear and become soft and smooth. A healthy regimen should also include plenty of water every day to keep the skin moist and beautiful from the inside.

Smoothing your skin by combining with skin loving carrier oils. Copaiba essential oil can leave skin smooth and youthful. Copaiba has a wide range of ethnopharmacological indications, including for the treatment of infections in the skin. Copaiba also acts as a cicatrisant or wound healer and we can’t forget its properties as an anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory. Apricot kernel oil is cold pressed from the seeds of apricots. It absorbs quickly and has great therapeutic properties including gentleness on inflamed, aging or sensitive skin. Try pairing it with Babassu Orbygnia or Rose Hip Rosa canina L. carrier oil, both beautiful for facial blends. Use one or a combination of all three carrier oils. I like using 1/3 each carrier oil. Grapefruit is phototoxic and not recommended if you are going in the sun. Sweet Orange Citrus sinesis is not phototoxic and a good alternative to Grapefruit. Facial products should be made between 0.2-1.5%

Facial Serum

  • To equal one ounce: Apricot Prunus armeniaca Kernel (cp), Babassu Orbygnia, Rose Hip Rosa canina L. carrier oil

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 3 drops Jasmine absolute Jasminum grandiflorum

  • 3 drops Grapefruit Citrus paradisi

  • 2 drops Neroli Citrus aurantium var. amara

Wound healing is achievable with Copaiba. Copaiba has proven to have antibacterial and wound healing properties. (7)

It’s perfect with other oils that act as cicatrisant such as Helichrysum and Lavender. Try the following. Do not use treatment on open wounds. For a carrier, Tamanu is best for wound healing. If you don’t have Tamanu, use what carrier you have handy. For wounds that have become infected, you may want to consult with your physician.

Wounds

  • 1-ounce Tamanu Oil

  • 10 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 drop Helichrysum Helichrysum italicum

  • 10 drops Lavender Lavendula angustifolia

Varicose veins can be unsightly as well as painful. Gently massaging your legs daily not only increases circulation to help shrink varicose veins, it also stimulates and gets the lymphatic system working more efficiently. Using Copaiba with other circulatory stimulants such as Rosemary, Juniper Berry, or Black Pepper will help circulation. Use 1% or 9 drops Copaiba alone or blended with one or more of the other mentioned oils per 1-ounce of carrier oil and massage legs after bath.

Athlete’s foot can be itchy and uncomfortable. Copaiba helps alleviate it along with toenail fungus. Combine ½ Copaiba oil to ½ carrier oil. After bath and before bed, apply generously to clean dry feet and place socks on. Continue until feet clear.

Fever can be reduced with the help of Copaiba. B-Caryophellane, the major component within Copaiba, is antipyretic, it assists with reducing fever. Antipyretics are substances or drugs that can cause the hypothalamus to override a prostaglandin-induced increase in temperature. Another word used in aromatherapy for antipyretics is febrifuge. Science is cool stuff.

Other fever reducing oils include Peppermint, Melissa, Palmarosa as well as others. If you choose to use either Peppermint or Melissa, take precautionary steps as they can be irritating to the skin. In high quantities, Peppermint has a warming effect rather than a cooling effect. Peppermint shouldn’t be used near or on the faces of children younger than five years old. Palmarosa is safe and goes beautifully with Copaiba. It has a sweet, soft delicate aroma with a rose undertone. And a bit herbaceous and woodsy. It goes well with Copaiba’s soft resinous, earthy, sweet, sensual aroma. Try blending ½ ounce of carrier oil with 5 drops each of Palmarosa and Copaiba. Apply to neck and chest area. Applying to the back will help reduce the fever even quicker. If you choose Melissa or Peppermint, I recommend not using them together. Since both are harsh, you increase the chance of irritation by using them together. Use one with the gentleness of Copaiba. A little peppermint is cooling, more will give a warming effect.

Symptoms of Eczema and Psoriasis can be reduced with Copaiba Copaiba can ease skin irritating symptoms such as eczema and psoriasis. However, they require two different treatments for two different issues. Eczema is Atopic dermatitis and describes an inflammation of the skin. Dermatitis can have many causes including allergies, genetic factors or other irritants and occurs in many forms. It usually involves an itchy rash on swollen, reddened skin.

Psoriasis is a common skin condition that speeds up the life cycle of skin cells. It causes cells to build up rapidly on the surface of the skin. The extra skin cells form scales and red patches that are itchy and irritating. Psoriasis is thought to be related to issues with the immune system.

For both conditions, addressing the underlying cause must first be accomplished. Discussing with your physician, changing diet or other personal habits is a great place to start. To address the skin, we can start with a light summertime carrier oil and skin healing oils, including Copaiba. Copaiba is wonderful for its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties.

Facial Care

  • ½ ounce Watermelon seed oil

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 drops Carrot Seed Daucus carota

  • 5 drops Helichrysum Helichrysum italicum

Skin penetrating components are in Copaiba. In the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology, Copaiba was tested and reviewed as a potential skin penetrating enhancer. This can help enhance penetration of drugs as well as essential oil into the skin more efficiently. (8) (9)

Other skin penetrating oils include Sweet Basil and oils with d-limonene which include all citrus oils. Oils high in d-limonene have concerns for phototoxicity and should be avoided in the sun or tanning beds. Other oils that are skin penetrators include oils with 1,8-cineole which can be found in Eucalyptus, Ravintsara, Rosemary as well as others. Oils high in 1,8-cineole come with a caution in children under 10 years of age. This is because of to the effect of these oils on the CNS (central nervous system) and may cause breathing issues in young children.

When using essential oils that may present a concern for the skin, blending with skin friendly oils helps to avoid possible irritation. Some skin friendly oils include Basil ct. linalool, Cypress, Frankincense, Geranium, Palmarosa, Helichrysum, and Lavender. Want a lovely blend to enjoy? I love this on my skin. This time a year we want a carrier low in fatty acids which tend to sit on the skin. Since we sweat, we want to use oils with a higher percentage of polyunsaturated linoleic acid since they absorb well in the summer. This would include Cucumber seed, Raspberry seed, Passion fruit seed, Grape seed and Watermelon seed oil.

Skin Loving Summer Oil

  • ½ ounce carrier oil

  • 4 drops Copaiba Copaifera officianalis

  • 4 drops Helichrysum Helichrysum italicum

  • 1 drop Rose absolute Rosa damacena*

*Note: Rose is quite potent. Always start at a low dilution*

Although no essential oil can prevent hair loss, you can help improve the health of your scalp and hair. You can do this by keeping your scalp healthy with essential oils and skin loving carrier oils. On dry clean hair, apply the following recipe. Brush through with a soft brush or comb, massaging your scalp gently. Place a warm towel over your hair for 30-60 minutes. Wash and rinse as usual.

Hair and Scalp Healing Oil

  • Grapeseed Vitis vinifera carrier oil

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officinalis

  • 5 drops Lavender Lavendula angustifolia

Anxiety may be lessened with Copaiba. As previously discussed, beta caryophellane is dominant within Copaiba. Caryophellane has antispasmodic properties which helps relax the body while calming to the central nervous system. Direct inhalation is best for anxiety related symptoms. Add the following blend to an inhaler or directly inhale from a bottle or cotton ball.

Anxiety

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officianalis

  • 5 drops Basil (Sweet) Ocimum basilicum ct linalool

  • 5 drops Roman Chamomile Chamaemelum nobile

Stress, whether physiological or biological, is the body’s response to an environmental condition. It is the body's method of reacting to a condition such as a threat, fear, or physical and psychological barrier. For those that have suffered extreme stressful conditions and if left untreated, could lead to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). To reduce stress, reach for oils that depress the central nervous system. Add to your carrier of choice, diffuse or inhalation.

Stress Less

  • 5 drops Copaiba Copaifera officianalis

  • 5 drops Roman Chamomile Chamaemelum nobile

  • 5 drops Clary Sage Salvia sclarea

  • 2 drops Sweet Marjoram Origanum marjorana

Resources:

  1. http://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/19/5/1511/htm

  2. http://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/19/5/1511/htm; 3.1 Medicinal Uses

  3. http://www.mdpi.com/1420-3049/17/4/3866/htm

  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3291111/

  5. http://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/19/5/1511/htm; 6.4. Anti-Inflammatory Activity of Copaiba

  6. https://www.acne.org/messageboard/topic/319593-the-bad-list-comedogenic-ingredients-and-products/

  7. http://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/19/5/1511/htm; 6. Biological Activities of Copaifera

  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29600536

  9. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/jphp.12906

Additional Resources:

  • Copaifera of the Neotropics: A Review of the Phytochemistry and Pharmacology https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5983702/

#essentialoil #allergies #health #skincare

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