Description: Of the worlds most ancient botanicals, Galbanum comes from a large perennial that is a member of the parsnip family. It can grow up to 6 feet in height! The plant produces a milky oleoresin that has documented use as an incense and in cosmetic preparations and embalming ointments in Egypt. Both the extract as well as the oleoresin have modern-day uses; as fixatives in body care products and soap-making.
It has a deep, vibrantly green and herbaceous odor that pervades and overtakes a blend if not used correctly (read: sparingly). Many have described it as the smell of life, rebirth, the essence of new green boughs bursting forth with love and joy in the spring, and the smell of the first raindrops falling from baby leaves. In terms of perfuming, Galbanum pairs beautifully with fatty, sweet florals, like Ylang Ylang, Jasmine and Mimosa. Galbanum’s bitter greenness adds some spunk and removes the cloying aspect of sweetness from these (sometimes overwhelming) florals. Galbanum would add a sharp green note to a Chypre blend.
Galbanum has been heavily indicated for emotional use in aromatherapy, for helping us cope with emotional traumas and letting go of losses. It can also help gently re-balance erratic energies and nervous tension. It is also suggested for use in skin care; helping heal scar tissue, fight the signs of ageing, helping ulcers heal, and minimizing long-term inflammation. In terms of whole-body care, Galbanum has a decongestant action on most systems; be it genito-urinary, lymphatic or respiratory. It would be excellent added to a “Detox” blend as well.
Contraindications: Highly odiforous in nature, use sparingly. Avoid in pregnancy. Potential cross-sensitization with Peru Balsam and Benzoin.