|INCI: ||Helichrysum italicum|
|Flavouring according to EC regulation 1334/2008|
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HELICHRYSUMHelichrysum italicum (Asteracee)
Origin: Italy (Sardinia)
Originally from the eastern Mediterranean basin and northern Africa, Helichrysum angustifolium is now grown in Italy, Spain, France and Croatia. It is an intensely aromatic shrub with densely ramified stems, hairy leaves and distinctive daisy-like flowers that retain their colour when dry. Helichrysum angustifolium grows to a height of sixty centimetres and is typically found in arid, rocky terrain.
The essential oil is obtained by steam distillation of the fresh flowers and flower clusters (the yield is extremely low). It is orangey-yellow in colour and has a powerful, honey-like fragrance with a rich undertone of tea. It combines well with the essential oils of Camomile, Clary sage, Clove, Geranium, Labdanum, Lavender, Ravensara, Rose, all the citrus fruits and Oakmoss absolute.
popular herbalist tradition)
In Europe, Helichrysum used to be a popular peasant remedy for headache, asthma, coughing and fever. It was ingested as a decoction or an infusion.
The essential oil of helichrysum is non-toxic and non-irritant, and is valued for its anti-allergic, cicatrizant, fungicidal, expectorant and anti-septic properties. It is also believed to have a soothing effect on sufferers of stress or depression when its vapours are released into the atmosphere. This effect is best achieved using a diffuser.
A natural product, Helichrysum has been demonstrated to combat psoriasis.
It is commonly used as a fixative and as a component of the fragrances used in soaps, cosmetics and perfumes. It's also valuable as a starter ingredient in the chemical isolation of natural Anethole.