Patchouli is a very fragrant herb with soft oval leaves and square stems. It grows from 2 to 3 feet in height and provides an unusual odor that is nonetheless characteristic of patchouli when the leaves are rubbed. The color of the patchouli oil is affected by the distillation machine. If distillation is done in a stainless steel vessel the color of the oil will be light, but if done in an iron vessel the color will be darker. Common Uses: Patchouli is recognized by aromatherapists as being effective for combating nervous disorders, helping with dandruff, sores, skin irritations and acne. The specific properties include use as an antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, anti-emetic, antimicrobal, antiphlogistic, antiseptic, antitoxic, antiviral, aphrodisiac, astringent, bactericidal, carminative, deodorant, digestive, diuretic, febrifuge, fungicidal, nerving, prophylactic, stimulating and tonic agent. In the perfumery industry, it is interesting to note that Patchouli improves with age, and that the aged product is what is preferred over freshly harvested. In aromatherapy, Patchouli is an excellent fixative that can help extend other, more expensive oils.
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