How to use Patchouli Essential Oil

Patchouli can be used to attract abundance and love.

Patchouli plant Pogostemon CablinPogostemon Cablin

Patchouli has a unique, deep, musky wood fragrance that brings warmth when used in aromatherapy and adds depth to perfumery. The oil is steam distilled from the leaves of the Pogostemon Cablin plant. 

The oil is rich in fragrance, dark in colour, and is one of a few oils that, like a fine wine, improves with age. It can be kept for years (even decades), as long as it is stored correctly in a cool dark place.

Patchouli essential oil

The strong scent and richness of Patchouli essential oil means a little goes a long way so it is an economic oil which can be used sparingly for topical application.

Like all essential oils the best way to fully understand the fragrance is not to smell it straight from the bottle. To realise the scent drop the oil onto a perfume smelling paper strip, but if you don’t have one of these to hand either put a little oil on a tissue and waft around before inhaling, or dilute in a carrier, massage into your hands and inhale directly from the palms to take in the true complexity of the aroma.

As you inhale the fragrance you will notice it becomes more subtle as it is dissipates into your skin or your environment. If your olfactory senses don’t initially like the scent of Patchouli, try blending it or popping it in a drawer for a year or so and see if you find improvement with the aroma as it ages.

Where have I smelt Patchouli before?

Patchouli is a common fragrance to be found in incense sticks and cones and has been used historically in Indian, Japanese and Chinese cultures for its mystical and medicinal properties. 

Patchouli oil is used in incense

Like a Prayer
Like a Prayer was Madonna’s critically acclaimed album released in 1989. If you were lucky enough to have bought one of the first pressings of the LP, cassette or CD you may know that the packaging was scented with Patchouli oil. This was done to create an aroma of the church and tied into the religious iconography and sound that the music on the album portrayed.

What is Patchouli oil used for?

Patchouli essential oil for perfume
Patchouli oil is used in perfumery as a base note fixative, lending itself well to combining with top note floral oils. Some people find top note florals overpowering, Patchouli essential oil is therefore perfect for dulling down these fragrances making them more palatable to the nose.

Patchouli is used in perfumery

Jasmine and Ylang Ylang are 2 oils that blend perfectly with Patchouli, layered together these oils create a depth of fragrance that is well suited for homemade perfumes and for diffusing and massage. Patchouli’s fixative properties slow the evaporation of oils that are more volatile in nature, allowing their fragrances to last longer.

Making homemade perfumes in a rollerball filled with Vodka and a carrier of your choice is an easy way to experiment with using Patchouli as a base note. Combining it with other EO’s that have top and middle notes will help you create a signature scent that is individual, uplifting, mood enhancing and long lasting.

Patchouli oil for abundance and love
Patchouli has long been connected with spirituality and mysticism, and so can be used ritually to help attract abundance, wealth, prosperity and love. It is said that if you want to attract money you should draw a pound sign on some paper or blotting paper, drop some Patchouli oil on it and carry it around in your wallet or purse.

Patchouli oil can be used to attract love

Burning Patchouli oil in a diffuser is also considered a way to attract abundance and love. Patchouli's ruling planet is Saturn and for this reason mystics suggest that Saturday (the day named after Saturn) is the best day to perform abundance rituals using Patchouli oil.

Inhale the aroma of Patchouli while closing your eyes and imagining the life full of the abundance that you desire. This will help to focus your mind on love or financial areas where you feel lack. Performing incantations and affirmations can also help with this process. 

Patchouli oil for stress and tension
In Feng Shui Patchouli oil represents metal and is said to bring clarity, peace and calmness.

Patchouli can be used for meditation

Aromatherapy attributes the properties of the oil to balancing and relaxing, reducing anxiety and to stimulation.

To lift your mood and spirits diffuse Patchouli with some Rosemary oil; to relax add Clary Sage or Bergamot to the blend. Massage a diluted blend into your temples, neck shoulders of the bottom of your feet to relieve stress and tension.

Patchouli essential oil recipes

Patchouli oil diffuser blend
For a mood lifting blend combine 1 drop of Patchouli, 1 drop of Jasmine and 4 drops of Geranium.

Patchouli oil rollerball perfume blend
Combine base notes of 2 drops of Patchouli, 3 drops of Neroli as a middle note and 2 drops of Orange and a drop of lemon as top notes. Add the oils to a 10ml roller bottle with 3 drops of vitamin e oil and fill to the top with Vodka. Give the bottle a shake and allow to stand. The longer it is left the more intoxicating the perfume will be. 

To experiment with your own perfume scent add 2 drops of a base note like Patchouli to a cotton ball, with 5 drops of middle note essential oils and 3 drops of top note EO's.

Leave the cotton ball to stand overnight for the aromas to settle. Have a whiff in the morning to determine if you like the blend. If you are not happy with the scent try different combinations of oil until you find the right fragrance for you.

Patchouli essential oil blends well with:
Bergamot, Clary Sage, Cypress, Geranium, Frankincense, Jasmine, Lemon, Lemongrass, Myrrh, Neroli, Orange, Rose, Rosemary, Sandalwood and Ylang Ylang

Patchouli essential oil safety

Patchouli is a powerful oil so always dilute it before use. The oil should be used  externally and never ingested. You should avoid Patchouli if you are breastfeeding or pregnant.

Seek medical advice if you have concerns about usage.