Bergamot Essential Oil - Unique Perceptions September, 2014

Bergamot is a type of bitter orange with greenish-yellow skin. Its pulp is too sour to eat, so the fruit is produced solely for the extration of essential oil from the peel. The name Bergamot is derived from the city Bergamo in Lombardy, Italy, where the oil was first sold. It has been grown since the 16th century in the Mediterranean countries like Italy and Greece. It is a common top note in perfumes and has been used in the perfume and food industries for a long time. While the essential oil has begun to be extracted more recently, the fruit, and its essence and flavour have been used in traditional medicine for hundred of years. Bergamot oil was an ingredient in the earliest formula of "eau de Cologne", in the 18th century. "Earl Grey tea" is a type of black tea that contains bergamot essential oil as a flavouring.

Bergamot oil is a cold-pressed essential oil produced by cells inside the rind of the bergamot orange. One hundred bergamot oranges will yield about three ounces (85 grams) of bergamot oil. The scent of bergamot essential oil is similar to a sweet light orange peel oil with a floral note and a sweetness as it evaporates.

Uses and Benefits of Bergamot Essential Oil

Bergamot oil is antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antidepressant, anti-infectious, anti-parasitic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, cicatrisant, digestive, sedative and gives hormonal support.

Bergamot essential oil is typically used in aromatherapy to treat the following conditions: addictions (including compulsive eating or anorexia), agitation, anxiety, fear, depression, post-natal depression, insomnia, tension, hysteria and low self-confidence. It can enhance mood, reduce stress and is said to help those suffering from SAD (Seasonal Affected Disorder). Physically, the oil can stimulate circulation and alleviate pain. It can be used to treat PMS, indigestion, loss of appetite, colic, infections (herpes, cold sores, respiratory, urinary tract), colds, flu, inflammation, rheumatism, headaches, eczema, psoriasis, oily skin, skin infections (like general wounds) and vaginal Candida. It can also be used as an insect repellent.

Supporting the Spirit and Easing the Mind

Its sweet and fruity aroma is uplifting and relaxing for the mind. Bergamot releases the need to be in complete control so that we can flow with life more easily. When we can relax and trust the universe to handle details of any life situation, we release the fear of the unknown and become clear about our own mission. Bergamot essential oil gently releases pent-up emotions, enabling you to express your feelings effectively but realistically. This is why bergamot oil is helpful when dealing with addictions or compulsive behaviors. Use it to help with smoking, drug and alcohol addiction especially when depression is a key element. Because this oil opens the heart chakra and is uplifting to the mind, it can relieve anxiety, stress and depression. This oil also relieves feelings of apathy and listlessness.

Healing the Body

Bergamot oil is a cicatrisant, which is the reason behind its extensive use in cosmetics and skin care products such as beauty soaps, creams, and lotions. Cicatrisant means a property or an agent which helps scars and other marks on the skin to disappear. It also makes the distribution of pigments and melanin even and uniform, resulting in the fading away of marks and an even, attractive skin tone. This essential oil is commonly used to eliminate the unsightly effects of acne, which can leave noticeable scars and marks on the affected areas for many years.

Bergamot is a good febrifuge, a substance that reduces fever and lowers body temperature. There are a number of reasons for this. First of all, as an antibiotic, it fights infections that arise from viruses, bacteria and protozoa that cause fever, including influenza (virus), malaria (protozoa) and typhoid (typhus bacteria). Secondly, it stimulates the metabolic system and gland secretions, thereby providing a feeling of warmth and resulting in additional secretion (perspiration or sweat) from the Eccrine glands (sweat glands) and sebaceous (sebum) glands, thus reducing body temperature. This can also reduce toxicity of the body through perspiration, and clean out the glands and pores of any foreign toxins that can result in a variety of skin conditions.

Bergamot oil relaxes nerves and muscles, thereby giving quick relief for cramps, convulsions, and painful muscle contractions. This can also be important for people with chronic coughing or respiratory conditions, as well as asthma, which is similar to a spasmodic reaction.

Bergamot essential oil is an excellent deodorant. Its refreshing aroma and disinfectant properties, which inhibit growth of germs causing body-odor, make it an effective and attractive delivery system as a deodorant. Citrus smells are very powerful, and can overcome or eliminate many other odors that people smell in a certain area, which is why bergamot oil is also used in room fresheners and sprays.

The same disinfectant and antibiotic properties of bergamot oil make it a good antiseptic and vulnerary agent. It not only promotes fast healing of wounds, cracks on the skin and heels, ulcers, eczema, and itching, but it also protects wounds from becoming septic and developing deadly tetanus. It not only treats and heals the effects of other infections, but inhibits the formation of new infections.

Bergamot essential oil is also a tonic, meaning that it tones up the respiratory, circulatory, digestive, excretory, and nervous system, as well as skin and muscles. It is also anticongestive and is used in vaporizers to relieve congestion and respiratory problems, particularly during coughs and colds. It works as an expectorant to loosen up phlegm and mucus in the respiratory tracts and helps the body to eliminate through natural avenues like sneezing and productive coughs, thereby reducing the total amount of material and eliminating some of the germs and toxins that caused the condition in the first place.

How To Use Bergamot Essential Oil

Special Blends

Add these essential oils to 20ml (4tsp) carrier oil:
  1. To soothe the pain of grief or loss:
    2 drops Bergamot
    4 drops Rose Otto
    4 drops Australian Sandalwood
  2. To clear oily or problem skin:
    2 drops Bergamot
    4 drops Sweet Orange
    4 drops Linaloe Wood
Bergamot oil is a favourite in aromatherapy and is used in vaporisers, massages, and blended into bath water.
  1. When combined with a carrier oil (such as jojoba, sweet almond, or avocado), bergamot essential oil can be applied directly to the skin or added to baths.
  2. Bergamot essential oil can also be inhaled after sprinkling a few drops of the oil onto a cloth or tissue (or by using an aromatherapy diffuser or vaporizer).
  3. Use diluted, one part essential oil: four part of vegetable oil. Then,
    1. Apply several drops (2-4) on location
    2. Apply to chakras/vitaflex points
  4. To ease severe emotional anxiety, take a bath with 2 drops Bergamot and 4 drop Neroli.
  5. To ease and calm grief, use Blend 1 above and apply it to your body in long, soothing strokes.
  6. To clear and cleanse oily or problem skin, or acne, use Blend 2 above and apply it to your face, or any other problem areas, as necessary.
  7. To cleanse and heal infected cuts or boils, use a hot compress with 2 drops Bergamot and 4 drops Tea Tree.
  8. Good for cleaning ears or helping with infection (dogs). Soothing yet uplifting oil that can relax pets, release anxiety and stress.


  1. Bergamot is phototoxic. Experts advice caution when using this oil on sensitive skin if it is exposed to sunlight after application, as this may cause burns. Keep out of the sun if this oil has been used on the skin.


  1. The Essential Oils Handbook, Jennie Harding, Watkins Publishing, London, 2008.