For those essential oil fans who are looking for something special to add to their collections, Litsea is it.
With a fresh lemony and green aroma, Litsea is often used in air fresheners and toiletries. It replaces synthetic citral in many fragrances.
A small tropical tree, Litsea is native to China and is used to block wind. Its fragrant flowers and leaves have a similar aroma to Lemongrass. The fruit of the tree is put through a steam distillation process to extract the oil. It’s camphorous and subtle sweet aroma blends well with resin-based essential oils.
Botanical Name: Litsea cubeba
Method: Steam Distilled
Plant Part: Fruit
Note: Top - Middle
Synonym: May Chang
Blends Well With: Frankincense and other resins
Aroma: Lemony, green, and camphorous with notes of subtle sweetness
Color: Pale Yellow
Safety: Keep out of reach of children. If pregnant or under a doctor’s care, consult physician. Avoid contact with eyes. Do not use internally unless instructed by a licensed aromatherapist or physician.
Adult Max Dilution: 0.8%
Shelf Life: 2-3 Years
Pet Safety: Essential oils are generally safe to diffuse around adult cats and dogs intermittently. Ensure the room you’re diffusing in is well-ventilated and that your pet can leave if desired. Discontinue use if you notice any adverse reaction. Avoid topical use and diffusing around young pets, small animals or pets with health problems.
- Litsea, otherwise known by its Latin binomial, Litsea cubeba originally was only known in western circles by its name. In the 1950s it began making its beneficial properties began making its way to western countries. It now is also well known by its common name, May Chang. It carries a beautiful, sharp lemon aromatic. This plant also can go by the name Chinese Pepper or Mountain Pepper.
- Litsea cubeba, or May Chang, is an essential oil steam distilled from the evergreen shrub that grows to a height of 15-25 feet high. It is part of the Lauraceae family of plants. It is native to the Southern Chinese region and Taiwan as well as Indonesia, Malaysia and Cambodia. The essential oil is steam distilled from the ripe berries. It has a long history of use in Chinese herbal medicine for many things including digestive issues, muscular aches and even headaches.
- May Chang, Litsea can help the user release stress and uplift the mood. It is a fantastic anti-fungal. It has cooling abilities as well as is a good anti-inflammatory for muscles, joints and skin issues. These abilities work to reduce a number of maladies in massage oil blends for issues with digestion, pain from arthritis and muscle aches. In respiratory blends, it can deepen breath and help those with asthma. It also has sedative properties. Its antimicrobial properties can serve cleaning products well. You may even find yourself using it in insect repellent blends.
- Lemongrass and Litsea are very comparable oils aromatically. Due to the fact that they are so similar it might be preferable to use one or the other. Lemongrass is slightly more earthy in its aromatic notes where Litsea has deep citrus notes. One way to see which oil you would prefer is to hold each one up to your nose to see where your mood takes you. To understand if the two oils are desirable together to your nose, hold the two open bottles together under your nose and breathe in the aroma deeply. Then make your decision. Essential oils really come down to personal likes and dislikes.
- Litsea or May Chang is not a very expensive essential oil. For up to date prices, always check the website.
Apply Topically: Our Single Essential Oils and Synergy Blends are 100% pure and undiluted. To apply to the skin, dilute with a high-quality Carrier Oil. See our dilution chart here. We recommend performing a skin patch test when using a new essential oil topically.
Diffuse & Inhale: Breathe in your favorite essential oils using an essential oil diffuser or personal pocket inhaler. For instructions on how to use your diffuser, please refer to the diffuser's product page.
DIYs: Explore simple and fun recipes on The Drop, our essential oil blog with expert tips, EO news, and informative reads.
UPLIFT: Add: 5 drops of Litsea, 5 drops of Grapefruit and 5 drops of Lemon. Or add 5-6 drops of Litsea to your diffuser and diffuse for 30-60 minutes.
RELEASE: Add to a personal inhaler and inhale as needed: 5 drops of Litsea, 5 drops of Ylang Ylang and 5 drops of Tangerine.
INHALER/DIFFUSER: Add to a personal inhaler and inhale as needed: 5 drops of Ledum, 5 drops of Eucalyptus (Radiata) and 5 drops of Niaouli. Or add 5-6 drops of this blend to your diffuser and diffuse for 30-60 minutes.
FIRST AID: To a 2 ounce squeeze bottle add: 5 drops of Litsea, 15 drops of Tea Tree, 4 drops of Lavender and 2 ounces aloe vera gel. (2% dilution)
BATHROOM SPRAY: In an 8 ounce spray bottle add: 30 drops of Litsea, 10 drops of Lime, 15 drops of Lemon, 25 drops of Tea Tree, 10 drops of Lemongrass and 10 drops of Thyme, then fill with distilled water and 1 tbsp of grain alcohol. Shake well before each use.