There may not be another scent in the world as distinctive as fresh peppermint. It is invigorating and soothing all at once.
The peppermint plant (Mentha x piperita) is a hybrid of water mint and spearmint. It is indigenous to the Middle East and Europe but is now cultivated in almost every corner of the world. Peppermint oil is the most widely used volatile oil and can be found in hundreds of commercial and medicinal products.
Peppermint oil has a long history of medicinal use in both Japanese and Chinese folk medicine and is frequently mentioned in Greek lore. The oil of this bracing herb has even been found in Egyptian pyramids.
Today, many people appreciate peppermint for its soothing effects on the digestive system and the refreshing flavor it adds to toothpaste, tea, and candy. If you are looking to add an invigorating and beneficial oil to your product lineup, consider peppermint essential oil.
How Is Peppermint Essential Oil Made?
Essential oils can be extracted from plant material in a variety of ways. Like many other flowering plants, peppermint is typically processed through steam distillation.
The heat and pressure of steam distillation cause the volatile oils in the plant to vaporize. They are transported to a condenser where they can cool and revert to a liquid state. After they cool completely, the essential oils separate from the other liquids, floating to the top of the essencier where they can then be collected.
The process of steam distillation is fairly easy and can be accomplished at home with simple equipment. Keep in mind that it takes nearly 65 pounds of fresh peppermint plant to produce just four ounces of pure essential oil.
Peppermint Essential Oil Basics
Peppermint oil has a sweet, fresh aroma that is unmistakably minty. It is stronger and less floral than spearmint oil, though the cousins are used in similar ways.
A high menthol content is the mark of a high-quality peppermint oil. The color of pure peppermint oil should be clear to slightly yellow, and the consistency is thin. Because of this, make sure to use caution if you’re pouring oil straight from the bottle, as you may get more than you intended.
It is not recommended to use peppermint directly on the skin without testing; it could be irritating to some people. Make a 2% solution by placing about 12 drops of essential oil into an ounce of carrier oil, such as grapeseed, jojoba, or sweet almond oil.
Test the solution on your arm before mixing peppermint oil in body care products. If no signs of irritation appear, you can increase the strength of your solution if desired.
Peppermint oil is considered to be a top-note scent and blends well with:
- Black pepper
- Tea tree
- Cypress oil
Peppermint oil is not considered safe for use on pets or children under three. In general, essential oils should not be ingested unless directed by a healthcare professional. However, peppermint is a happy exception to this rule. Peppermint oil capsules are frequently used to relieve digestive issues, such as gas and bloating.
5 Key Peppermint Oil Benefits
Including peppermint in your products is both smart and economical. It is one of the most affordable and versatile oils available. And for individuals, whether you are simply looking for a fresh, clean scent for melt-and-pour soap projects, or you need natural support for maintaining health, peppermint oil has got you covered.
By using peppermint oil, you can:
1. Relieve Joint and Muscle Pain
If you’re looking for a natural way to relieve muscle pain for your customers, look no further than the humble peppermint plant.
It has cooling and antispasmodic properties that ease muscle tension, including the type that can cause headaches, while also invigorating tired muscles. In a 2016 clinical trial published in Schmerz, German researchers found that peppermint essential oil performed as well as acetaminophen for alleviating tension headaches.
People with myofascial and fibromyalgia pain may also find relief by applying peppermint oil topically. The cooling components of the oil work like a natural analgesic.
2. Peppermint Oil for Hair and Scalp Health
There aren’t many natural beauty aids that work as well as peppermint. It thickens and nourishes damaged hair and stimulates the scalp. The menthol in peppermint is a powerful antiseptic that removes germs from the scalp and hair while minimizing dandruff.
If your customers are concerned that their hair is thinning, add two or three drops of peppermint oil to your shampoo, conditioner, and leave-in products to promote hair growth. A drop or two of peppermint oil can also relieve the itch of a dry scalp.
3. Improve Skin Health
If you thought using peppermint oil for hair care was a good idea, wait until you hear what it can do for your skin. Thanks to its antimicrobial and antiseptic properties, peppermint essential oil can be effective in treating:
- Itchy skin
Mix a solution of equal parts peppermint and lavender essential oils and apply the combination to areas of concern.
4. Repel Bugs and Mosquitos
Repel spiders, ants, cockroaches, mice, and other creepy crawly nuisances from your home with peppermint oil. Place a few drops of oil on a cotton ball and place it in the small cracks where pests are entering.
Alternatively, you can mix plain water and peppermint oil in a spray bottle and spray down counters, doors, and windows where insects are spotted.
You can also make an effective mosquito repellant with peppermint oil. A 2011 study from the Asia Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine showed that the oil provides approximately 150 minutes of protection before it’s necessary to reapply.
5. Reduce Nausea
A nice cup of peppermint tea has been soothing upset tummies for centuries, and science finally confirms what millions of mothers already know — it works!
Peppermint oil can be so effective for taming nausea that simply inhaling the aroma can be enough to ease symptoms. A 2021 study from the Journal of Holistic Nursing found that inhaling peppermint oil offered relief for hospitalized patients suffering from nausea and vomiting.
You can also massage a drop or two of the oil behind your ears for nausea relief.
How to Use Peppermint Oil
There are almost as many ways to use peppermint oil as there are reasons to love it. For a few safe options for enjoying peppermint oil benefits in your daily routine, you can:
- Diffuse it (not recommended in households with pets)
- Cook with it by adding a drop to desserts, salad dressings, or smoothies for a refreshing boost of mint flavor
- Make a massage oil to use on tense or tired muscles
- Add a few drops to a warm bath to relieve nasal congestion
- Mix peppermint oil, shea butter, and salt for an invigorating and exfoliating foot scrub
Don’t forget about the easiest way to enjoy peppermint oil. Simply inhale the bracing aroma straight from the bottle to help relieve nasal congestion and boost your mental clarity.
Where to Find the Best Peppermint Oil
As the original essential oil company, The Essential Oil Company has long-standing global relationships with suppliers and distillers. Since 1977, we have been your trusted source of high-quality essential oils and materials for small businesses, wholesale clients, crafters, spas, and medical professionals.
We carry small bottles of peppermint oil for personal use and also offer large bulk orders for professional makers, all at affordable prices. We are proud to be a full-service company that helps small business owners through product education.
When you contact The Essential Oil Company, you can get a real person on the phone. We are happy to customize orders for you as needed. To learn more about our wide selection of essential oils, blends, and equipment, reach out to The Essential Oil Company today.