Bergamot (Citrus bergamia)
Fun fact: Bergamot essence is used in voodoo as a protective measure against evil and danger.
Bergamot has a rather controversial history. Some say it originates from Northern Italy, taking its name from the the small town of Bergamo where it was discovered. Others state it originated in India, and its Turkish name means "King of Pears", which reflects the pear-shaped fruit of the plant. Whatever it's history, there is no disputing that bergamot has been used for years because of its sweet, citrusy scent with spicy undertones. Popular with perfumers for centuries, bergamot has an uplifting, energizing scent which also makes it perfect for aromatherapy. Additionally, bergamot is one of the most versatile essential oils, as not only does it have sedative qualities, but also stimulating as well. It appears to adapt to the needs of the person using it. Bergamot also gives Earl Grey tea its unmistakable and unique flavor, which makes it a favorite among tea lovers everywhere.
Mixes well with: All essential oils, and especially Atlas cedarwood, citronella, chamomile, clary sage, eucalyptus, geranium, juniper, lavender, lemon, lime, marjoram, nutmeg, orange, oregano, palmarosa, rosemary, sandalwood, tangerine, and ylang ylang.
Parts used: Peel of nearly ripe fruit.
Extraction method: Cold expression.
Safety Information: This essential oil is phytotoxic, which means it increases the effect of sunlight. Therefore, never apply bergamot to skin before exposure to sun. Additionally, do not apply neat on skin; must be diluted in a carrier oil or cream. Not recommended for use if pregnant.