This or That: Cinnamon Leaf and Cinnamon Bark
With fall around the corner, we’re taking out our coziest oils to diffuse and enjoy. And one oil we can’t stop diffusing lately is none other than Cinnamon essential oil. Warm, wonderful and spicy, the classic and beloved aroma of Cinnamon oil has a way of ushering in an autumnal atmosphere, and we’re here for it.
If you’re like us and want to stock up on a Cinnamon spice oil but aren’t sure which to choose, then you’re in luck. Because in today’s short guide our aromatherapists are comparing those that we offer so you can better decide which oil is right for you. Read on for our hot take on Cinnamon.
What Is Cinnamon Essential Oil?
At Edens Garden, we offer Ceylon Cinnamon Bark oil and Ceylon Cinnamon Leaf oil (Cinnamomum zeylancium). These oils are sourced from Sri Lanka, which was formerly known as Ceylon, and are produced by skilled workers who’ve oftentimes been growing and harvesting Cinnamon for generations. Ceylon Cinnamon is also known as ‘true cinnamon’ because it is often confused with Cassia. In fact, Cassia is sometimes incorrectly referred to as Cassia Cinnamon and Cassia Cinnamon oil amongst aromatherapy consumers.
Cinnamon producers can only harvest the bark four years after a Cinnamon tree has been planted and matured. Once harvested, skilled workers begin the delicate process of stripping the outer skin to expose the inner bark and carefully peel away thin layers of cinnamon bark. These layers are then dried in the sun to curl. Once curled, layers are fitted and tied together to create a cinnamon stick and then further dried for a few days. This bark is then steam distilled to produce Cinnamon Bark essential oil. Broken, leftover pieces of bark are ground to make ground cinnamon.
On the other hand, Cinnamon Leaf essential oil and Cassia essential oil are produced from the leaves of their trees and require less labor to produce. Because of the high value placed on cinnamon bark and the labor-intensive process that goes into collecting it, Cinnamon Bark oil is more expensive than Cinnamon Leaf oil and Cassia oil.
What’s The Difference Between Cinnamon Oils?
While they may be very similar in aroma, our Cinnamon oils have quite a few differences beyond which plant part they come from. And when talking about Cinnamon Leaf and Bark oil, we also can’t help but talk about Cassia – Cinnamon’s close relative. Now let’s discuss their differences and similarities.
Cinnamon has a very distinct aroma. The signature scent of Cinnamon is caused by a compound called cinnamaldehyde. If you are seeking a sweeter and spicier aroma out of the two, Cinnamon Bark is the more potent choice. It contains more cinnamaldehyde than Cinnamon Leaf, giving it a stronger, more intense Cinnamon aroma.
And if you want something even more fragrant but still smells like Cinnamon, opt for Cassia. Incredibly sweet and potent, Cassia contains a component called coumarin which gives it a more intense aroma. For this reason, only a little Cassia is needed in blends due to its potency.
Benefits & Uses
A 2015 research study found that both Cinnamon Leaf and Cinnamon Bark were rich in antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.
Cinnamon Leaf has a higher eugenol content–a known antiseptic and anesthetic phenylpropene–making it ideal for aches and pains.
Cinnamon and Cassia are all known to soothe away the weight of sorrow by lifting the mood and prompting cheer.
In Cinnamon Bark, the higher levels of cinnamaldehyde increase its antimicrobial and antiviral properties. Its healing properties are powerful against harmful microbes. Cinnamon Bark is also a great insecticide and fungicide for plants.
While Cinnamon and Cassia are largely beneficial to users, they each come with a few safety precautions. Due to their potency, these oils are not recommended to be used on or around young children. Of the three, Cinnamon Leaf can be used when pregnant and nursing, but Cinnamon Bark and Cassia are not recommended to be used. And lastly, each oil has a recommended maximum dilution rate which can be found below–
- Cinnamon Leaf: .6% = approximately 14 drops in 4 oz of carrier oil
- Cinnamon Bark: .07% = approximately 1-2 drops in 4 oz of carrier oil=
Cassia: .05% = approximately 1 drop in 4 oz of carrier oil
What Can I Mix With Cinnamon Oil?
Cinnamon adds a spicy, irresistible warmth to almost any essential oil blend. It’s best paired with other spices like Star Anise, Allspice, Nutmeg and Clove oil along with citruses like Blood Orange, Mandarin and Sweet Orange oil.
Here are a few of our favorite uses for Cinnamon oil and which oils it blends well with.
Cinnamon oil doesn’t just spice up the senses, it can also spice up your love life with its aphrodisiac properties. Cardamom, Cinnamon Bark, Jasmine and other sensual oils come together in XOXO to create an enticing oil that stirs up passion and positivity.
The warm, spicy and cozy aroma of Cinnamon has a way of cheering people up. When you need a mood boost, try blending Cinnamon with an uplifting citrus oil like Sweet Orange. If you prefer a synergy blend, you’ll find that Cinnamon and Sweet Orange make a positive pair in our Bliss and Sunshine Spice blends.
While Cinnamon oil might be synonymous with the fall season, it can be found in many people’s homes year-round for its ability to support health and wellbeing. In fact, Cinnamon oil can be found in two of our most popular blends that also happen to boost wellness–Guardian and Fighting Five essential oil blends.
This Or That?
Life is full of choices. What to eat for dinner, who to spend time with, what to wear, which Cinnamon oil variety you should pick up...And while we can’t tell you which Cinnamon oil to choose or which (fill in the essential oil) variety is best for you, we do want to make choosing easy, effortless and educated.
That’s why we created the This or That series–to help you understand the differences and similarities between essential oil varieties. Read more about the differences between our Orange, Frankincense and Lavender oils and more on our blog.
- Why Ceylon Cinnamon Is So Expensive | So Expensive. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mn6650M3M-U
- Antibacterial Effects of Cinnamon: From Farm to Food, Cosmetic and Pharmaceutical Industries. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4586554/
Grab The Essentials Here:
Leave a comment (Comments will be approved before showing up)
I’d like a link to that 2015 study you mention. Could you forward that to my email? Thank you.
Hi Courtney! You can read our full stance on ingestion here: https://www.edensgarden.com/blogs/news/is-it-safe-to-ingest-essential-oils-1
can i ingest this cinnamon leaf oil? at small amounts in a drink? or a tea?
Hi, I was at a potluck where someone had said she used cinnamon essential oil in their delicious fruit salad. Which “cinnamon” EO would that be (the bark, leaf, or cassia)?
Hi Janice! If you’re looking to use Cinnamon purely for aroma, Cinnamon Leaf is the most mild and might be suitable for you. Ocotea has an even milder, yet still very pleasant cinnamon-like aroma which you may also like.
I get migraines when I’m around whatever cinnamon is used in spiced tea, pine cones, potpourri, etc. However, baking cinnamon does not bother me. Would it be best to buy the cinnamon bark oil?
oh my, thank you! Can’t believe just yesterday, put on my To Do list for the week “Find the diff between Cinnamons.” You’re right, it’s that time of the year! Just have to study and absorb it now. TY!
January 7, 2022 at 12:14 pm
Hi Elizabeth! Here is the requested article: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4466762/