There's no denying the delight that a vibrant aroma can bring... and Orange Sweet essential oil is one of the happiest scents we can think of! Not to mention it's bright joyful colour. It is the all-round good guy in any essential oil collection.
Orange trees are grown all around the globe and are most successful in climates that offer warm to hot temperatures throughout the day and cooler temperatures at night. The species prefers regular rainfall but can also be prolific when full irrigated. Seedlings are planted in rows roughly two metres apart, allowing for full tree growth and optimal fruit harvesting.
Fruit first starts to bear after 2-3 years and commercial harvesting commences when the trees reach full maturity at around 7 years. When grown in the best conditions, some orange trees can live up to 50 years, continually flowering and fruiting every season.
There are three key industries that the fruit is sold into - the whole-fruit market, the juice industry and essential oil production... which actually runs in parallel to the juice industry.
Harvested fruit is inspected and undergoes grading and sorting. This is where it is separated into whole-fruit sale or juicing and/or essential oil extraction.
Mechanical extractors separate the fruit in preparation for juicing and essential oil production. The essential oil is extracted from the flavedo, or outer part of the orange peel. To facilitate this, the thin part off the peel is removed from the rest of the orange. The remaining orange goes for juicing, and the peel is then mixed and crushed with water in a cold press. This oil and water mixture is processed through a hydrocyclone and centrifuge to separate the essential oil from the water molecules, and finally out through a polisher refined centrifuge to ensure absolute purity of the oil.
Sweet orange essential oil is a favourite in natural cosmetic formulations. Its bright vibrant colour and sweet, zesty fresh aroma is cheerful and friendly and appeals to both men and women.
When added to a body butter or cream it can improve muscle tone and the appearance of healthy skin. Or when incorporated into a cleanser, it may reduce irritations and redness in dry or acne prone complexions. It's valuable in anti-ageing serums or eye lotions, as it can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Plus, when added to a vaporiser or bath, it will help calm overexcited states and promote a good night's sleep.
If you've even been to a Natural Scent Blending Workshop with Lu* you know that it's one of her favourite oils... and if you are ever unsure of what to add to a blend - try a few drops of Orange Sweet!