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Sandalwood

Voluptuous and oriental

The voluptuous scent of sandalwood immediately transports you to the magical world of the Orient. The aromatic wood and its oil are mainly used for incense sticks, cosmetics, jewellery and perfume. There are different types, for example white and yellow sandalwood.

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What is Sandalwood?

Sandalwood is an umbrella term for a variety of woods that come from the trees of the genus “Sandalum”. A distinction is often made according to colour, i.e. white, yellow and red sandalwood. The true sandalwood is “Sandalum Album”.
 
A sandalwood tree can grow up to 20 metres high. However, the essential oil, which is responsible for the characteristic smell, is only formed in the heartwood of the tree after 25 years. That is why it is considered very precious worldwide. The scent of sandalwood is sweet and earthy-woody. The sandalwood tree is on the list of endangered species.
 
To extract the precious oil, the trunks are peeled by machine and the heartwood is shredded. By steam distillation, the oil is extracted. To produce one litre of sandalwood oil, you need about 20 kg of wood.

Where does sandalwood come from?

Originally, sandalwood comes from India. There, the oil has been used for medicinal purposes for over 3000 years. Today, the trees are also planted in China, Venezuela, Africa and Indonesia.
 
However, sandalwood is mainly found in the Pacific region and the tropics. It grows best at altitudes between 600 and 1500 metres.

What is sandalwood used for?

Sandalwood and its oil are especially popular in aromatherapy and natural cosmetics. Its versatility is only one of the reasons why it is in such high demand. For example, it is used for relaxation, lowering blood pressure, for the treatment of inflammations and mucous membrane diseases as well as an aphrodisiac. It is also used for acne and other skin diseases, cystitis, bronchitis and varicose veins.
 
In aromatherapy, sandalwood is used to relieve anxiety and problems falling asleep. Sandalwood oil also has a positive effect on the skin. That is why it is included in many skin care products, from soaps to creams and lotions.
 
Sandalwood is also used for carvings. This can result in various products for the medical or spiritual field. For example, the wood chips are used as chewing tobacco or incense.  Sandalwood powder is also used to make incense sticks.

How is sandalwood used?

Incense made of sandalwood is used in India mainly for meditations and for rituals such as weddings and funerals. The incense is lit and through the resulting smoke, the sandalwood unfolds its unique effect.
 
The oil can also be used in various ways. For example, in the sauna as an infusion, as a component of massage oil, cosmetic products or in a fragrance lamp.

Sandalwood Incense Sticks

Especially incense sticks are very popular in Europe. This is due to the pleasant smell and the effect. The incense sticks should consist of 100% natural ingredients. They are perfect for daily use and are often used in the spa, during meditation and yoga.

What is the effect of sandalwood?

Sandalwood has many different effects. In medicine, the oil is mainly used for its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving effect.
 
Other positive properties that are used:
  • antioxidant
  • bronchodilator
  • heart-strengthening
  • calming, sleep-inducing
  • antispasmodic
  • antipruritic

This should be noted

The unique scent of sandalwood has made it very popular all over the world. In recent years, this has led to heavy overexploitation at the expense of the environment and the trees. That is why exports have meanwhile been strictly regulated in India. In addition, the long transport routes also have a negative effect on one’s own CO2 footprint.
 
Since it is very cumbersome and tedious to extract the oil, it is now often produced synthetically in cosmetic products.

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