Think stressed, hormonal, + erratic skin when you think of how Geranium may help you.


The seasons have shifted yet again and we are now firmly in the glorious days of Spring. This time of year always stirs in me the desire for new beginnings. During this time of new growth, I notice a tendency to get pulled out into the excitement of it all. Saying yes to every invitation and overcommitting myself in an attempt to enjoy this glorious sense of what is now possible with the energy of spring. It is only after a couple weeks of this complete surrender to the the outward movement that I realize just how far away from my center I have drifted. It’s at these moments when I reach for geranium, my go to essential oil for balancing and re-centering body, mind, + spirit.

Geranium’s botanical name is Pelargonium spp. the most common in aromatherapy being Pelargonium graveolens and Pelargonium cv rose. Pelargonium consists of approximately 270 species, the majority originating in South Africa [1]. These beautiful plants are now a mainstay in gardens due to how easy they are to grow and maintain. Honestly who wouldn’t want these beautiful plants and flowers scenting their gardens?

This clear to pale yellow/green essential oil is obtained from the steam distillation from the aerial  (above ground) parts of the plant. A variety of countries are producers of geranium essential oil including France, Spain, Italy, Africa (Northern, Central, and Eastern), Madagascar, Reunion, Russia, India and China [2]. At present commercial production is dominated by China and Egypt meaning that most essential oils on the market come from these two countries.

This soft and gentle essential oil is one that I use regularly for it’s balancing quality on pretty much everything. Emotions, skin, hormones, you name it, Geranium is the known harmonizer in aromatherapy. A rose geranium hydrosol spritz or a drop of oil on my lava bead bracelet is my go to when stress starts to mount and my hormones begin to riot.

While some find the scent too floral, I consider this rosy scented oil to be quite feminine and alluring. I use it in my personal perfumes when I am wanting to connect more fully to my feminine side (and my husband loves it which is an added bonus).


Looking at the chemistry of an essential oil can tell us about it’s safety, toxicity and in some cases it’s therapeutic possibilities. The main chemical constituents found in geranium are citronellol, geraniol, linalool, and iso-menthone. It is the particular proportion of each of these chemical constituents that give Geraniums from various regions different scents. For instance geraniol is a monoterpene alcohol that gives the sweet rosy aroma found in some geranium essential oils. It is found in much lower quantities in oil from China (8.7-8.9%) compared to Reunion (7.3-30.3%), thus the differences in their scents (I much prefer the varieties higher in geraniol). Geraniol is also a component found in many natural bug repellants as it has been shown to have insect repellant activity.


Low risk for skin sensitization. Maximum dermal application of 17.5% [3]


Research on Geranium essential oil has looked at it’s benefit in the following areas:


Pre Menstrual Syndrome [5]

Analgesic (Post herpetic neuralgia) [6]

Antispasmodic [7]

Concentration [8]

Mosquito repellant [9]


Historically and in current aromatherapy practice Geranium is used for:

Mind + Emotions: Stress, Anxiety, helps to create emotional balance

Skin: Balancing to all skin types

Body: Used during menstruation and menopause


Remember that you want your supplier to provide the following information about their essential oils…

Common Name: Geranium

Latin Name: Pelargonium graveolens, Pelargonium cv rose. 

Country of Origin: France, Spain, Italy, Africa (Northern, Central, and Eastern), Madagascar, Reunion, Russia, India and China

How was it grown: Organically, ethically, wild-harvested, or conventionally

Extraction: Distillation of aerial plant parts


While Geranium has a variety of uses in aromatherapy, I use it most for it’s profound balancing effect on body, mind, + spirit. Think stressed, hormonal, + erratic skin when you think of how Geranium may help you.


This is a blend that I love specifically for keeping me (and my hormones ) from going crazy the week before menstruation. And those friends of mine transitioning through menopause swear by this as well. If you don’t want to make the blend not a problem. It’s ready made under the name Nourish


7 ml essential oil bottle with orifice reducer

3 mls geranium essential oil

2.5 mls lavender

1.5 mls clary sage

Step 1: Using a pipette add 3 mL geranium, 2.5 mL lavender, and 1.5 mL clary sage to clean 7 ml essential oil bottle

Step 2: With gloved or clean hands insert orifice reducer into bottle and cap and label

Step 3: Diffuse 3-5 drops when you feel the overwhelm or add 2-5 drops in 1 Tb of organic oil and massage on your body

Recipe #2  BUG BE GONE

This is a natural mosquito repellant that I just adore because it smells delicious and it’s safe for use on kids. Remember to reapply frequently.


4 oz glass amber spray bottle

4 oz rose Geranium hydrosol or distilled water

20 drops Geranium

20 drops Lemon eucalyptus (Eucalyptus citriodora) 

15 drops Cedarwood (Juniperus virginiana)

15 drops Lavender


This has become a nightly skin ritual that I adore. It leaves me feeling cared for and calm.


1 Rose Quartz Facial Roller

4 oz Rose Geranium Hydrosol

2 oz Amber bottle with dropper

1.5 oz jojoba oil

.5 oz Rosehip oil

1 tsp Vitamin E oil

10 drops Geranium essential oil

10 drops Lavender essential oil

To Make Facial Serum: 

Pour the following into clean 2 oz Amber bottle: Jojoba, rosehip, and vitamin E oil (make sure it is 100% vitamin E with no added oils) and add 10 drops each of geranium and lavender essential oils. Gentle swirl to mix contents and store in a cool dark place.

Facial Ritual

Step 1: Cleanse skin with mild cleanser

Step 2: Liberally mist Rose Geranium hydrosol over face and neck. Allow a minute to soak in (just enough time that skin is still damp but not wet)

Step 3: Apply a small amount of Facial serum to skin and neck

Step 4: Take chilled facial roller (I keep mine in the fridge) and with medium pressure roll over face, working outward and upward with your rolls. Not only does this help the serum to sink, but it stimulates circulation and feels incredible to boot. Remember to gently rinse and dry facial roller after use.

End Notes: 

Miller, DM. (2002). The taxonomy of pelargonium species and cultivars. their origins and growth in the wild. Lis-Balchin M. ed. Geranium and Pelargonium. London: Taylor & Francis Group.

Essential Oils and Oleoresins: Market Insider, July 2015 Report. International Trade Center. Source link here

Tisserand, R. & Young, R. (2014). Essential Oil Safety: A guide for Health Care Professionals (2nd Ed.) Philidelphia, PA: Elselvier.

 Shirzadegan, R. et al. (2017). Effects of geranium aroma on anxiety among patients with acute myocardial infarction: A triple blind randomized clinical trial. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice. 29: 201-206.

Lotfipur-Rafsanjani, S.M. et al. (2018). Effects of geranium aromatherapy massage on premenstrual syndrome. International Journal of Preventive Medicine. 5(9) 98.

Greenway et al. (2003). Temporary relief of postherpetic neuralgia pain with topical geranium oil. American Journal of Medicine. 115(7): 586-587.

Lis-Balchin, M. et al. (1997). The spasmolydic activity of the essential oils of scented pelargoniums (geraniacea). Physiotherapy Research. 11(8): 583-584.

Tasev, T., Toleva, P., Balabanova, V. (1969). The neurpsychic effect of bulgarian rose, lavender, and genial. Folia Meidca. 11 (5): 307-317.

Uniyal A et al. “Behavioral Response of Aedes aegypti Mosquito towards Essential Oils Using Olfactometer” J Athropod Borne Dis. 2016;10(3):370-380 PMCID: PMC4906743