Information submited: 2015-05-20 Modified: 2018-03-12 By: 1
Botanical Name: Helichrysum italicum
Common Method of Extraction: Steam distilled
Part Typically Used: Fresh flowering tops
Color: Yellow - reddish
Perfumery Note: Middle / Base
Strength of Initial Aroma: Herbal smell, strongly straw-like, fruity smell, with a honey and tea undertone.
The genus Helichrysum consists of an estimated 600 species, in the Sunflower family (Asteraceae). The type species is Helichrysum Orientale. The name is derived from the Greek words Helisso "To turn around" and Chrysos "Gold". It is commonly known as Everlasting oil, Immortelle and St. John's herb (not to be confused with St. John's Wort which is known as Hypericum Perforatum).
The plants may be annuals, Herbaceous Perennials or shrubs, growing to a height of 60 - 90 cm. Their leaves are oblong to lanceolate. They are flat and pubescent on both sides. The bristles of the pappus are scabrous, barbellate, or plumose. The receptacle (base of the flower head) is often smooth, with a fringed margin, or honey - combed, and resemble daisies.
When cut young and dried, the open flowers and stalks preserve their colour and shape for long periods.
Helichrysum Italicum is an European herb native to France, Italy and a few neighboring countries. This is a very costly oil and scarcely available, but unlike other essential oils which have a short shelf life, this oil can be stored for a very long time (5 - 7 years).
Helichrysum Italicum (synonym Helichrysum Angustifolium) is steam distilled to produce a yellow-reddish essential oil popular in fragrance for its unique scent, best described as a mixture of burnt sugar and ham. Angustifolium means narrow leaved. The name is commonly misspelled as "Augustifolium".
The main chemical components of helichrysum oil are a-pinene, camphene, b - pinene, myrcene, limonene, 1,8 - cineole, linalool, terpinen - 4 - ol, neryl acetate, nerol, geraniol, eugenol, italidone and other b - diketones.
The essential oil yield for Helichrysum is quite low at approximately: 0,2 - 0,3%. This would be a contributing factor to its cost. The average price at the time of writing for 5mls is $32 - 40. US.