Petitgrain essential oil, petitgrain bigarde, has a crisp, fresh aroma with a slight citrus scent. It is uplifting, may help to reduce mental fatigue, and is mildly sedating. Petitgrain essential oil, a middle note, blends well with sweeter scents with similar properties because it helps to balance out the fragrance. Petitgrain is valuable for the heart in slowing down heart palpitations and a rapid heart beat. The essential oil is useful for calming the stomach and for stress-related irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). It is also used in cleansing the skin, making it suitable for oily skin and acne.
Petitgrain, petitgrain bigarde, is an evergreen tree up to 10m high with glossy dark green leaves and fragrant white flowers. The essential oil is produced by steam distillation from the leaves and twigs. Petitgrains are native to southern China and northeast India. The best-quality petitgrain oil comes from France but good-quality oil is also produced in North Africa, Paraguay and Haiti from semi-wild trees. Petitgrain oil has a woody and at the same time a florally smell, the color of the oil is pale yellow to amber and it is watery in viscosity. Petitgrain is one of the three oils obtained from the orange tree; the others are Neroli from the flowers and Orange from the fruit. Petitgrain oil was once extracted from the green unripe oranges when they were still the size of cherries, hence the name Petitgrain or 'little grains".
Petitgrain essential oil, blends well with the following essential oils: lavender, lemon, clary sage, myrrh and spicy oils such as nutmeg, cinnamon and clove.
Petitgrain oil cautions - Generally non-toxic, non-irritant, non-sensitizing. May cause sun sensitivity, and should avoid use before sunning.
Petitgrain oil properties - Antidepressant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, carminative, cordial, deodorant, digestive, stimulant (nervous), tonic (cardiac, circulatory).