Melissa rectified (lemonbalm) essential oil, melissa officinalis, has a pleasant, sweet, lemony, herbaceous aroma. The oil is consider to be one of the most powerful essential oils for aromatherapy uses. Melissa essential oil is excellent for treating female menstrual problems and is useful for all sorts of nervous problems, hysteria, melancholy, and insomnia. It is often used in aromatherapy to treat depression and stress. Melissa oil is a powerful anti-viral, and has shown promise in healing and relieving skin lesions from the Herpes-Simplex virus through direct application of the oil.
Melissa (lemonbalm) is a perennial plant; the stem is upright, hairy, quadrangular, and branched and grows as high as 3 feet. The leaves are opposite, ovate, long-petioled, somewhat hairy, bluntly serrate, and acuminate. The bilabiate flowers grow in auxiliary clusters and may vary in color from pale yellow to rose colored or blue-white. The flowering time is July and August, and the sweet aroma attracts honey bees, which is what gives this herb it's name, as "melissa" is the Greek word for honeybee. The great Paracelsus called this herb the elixir of life, and combined it with carbonate of potash in a mixture known as Primum Ens Melissae. This particular melissa was grown and steam distilled in France.
Melissa rectified (lemonbalm) esential oil, melissa officinalis, blends well with the following essential oils: lavender, geranium, floral and citrus oils.
Melissa oil cautions - Non-toxic, possible sensitization and dermal irritation: use in low dilution only. One of the most frequently adulterated oils. Most commercial melissa contains some or all of the following: lemon, lemongrass, or citronella. Not recommended for use during pregnancy.
Melissa oil properties - Antispasmodic, calmative, carminative, diaphoretic, emmenagogue, stomachic, febrifuge, sedative, antidepressant, nervine.