Types Of Citrus Essential Oils

There are various types of citrus plants and oils that are highly desired for their antioxidants and multi-purpose uses. Citrus contains limonene, which is what gives them that refreshing smell we all know and love. Although limonene is often used as a fragrance component in skin care, cosmetics and perfumes, it is also anti-inflammatory. However, not all citrus fruits contain limonene, the ones that do are lemons, limes, oranges and yuzu. Below is a list of citrus essential oils and their uses:


On the outside, it looks like a green colored orange. On the inside, its flesh resembles lemon or lime, depending on the degree of ripeness. It is also partly responsible for the flavor of Earl Grey tea originating from 19th century Great Britain. Bergamot essential oil has multiple benefits ranging from pain relief for muscle aches and headaches, supporting the digestive system and disinfecting harmful airborne and surface bacteria. Inhaling its floral and tart scent can help to give an energy boost while diminishing unfavorable moods.


It is a very sweet and tangy tasting cross-breed citrus fruit, a fusion of willowleaf mandarin orange and a sweet orange. When inhaling Clementine essential oil via a diffuser or straight from the bottle, the orangey and slightly lemony aroma addresses stressful feelings and insomnia by promoting a sense of clarity and tranquillity to the mind, which leads to body relaxed and rejuvenated.


As a fruit, it is popularly incorporated to maintain a healthy lifestyle and for weight loss. As an essential oil, it is popular for its detoxifying and mood enhancing properties. Adding grapefruit essential oil to a hot bath or a massage blend to promotes relaxation and loosens up stiff muscles after a long day. Studies have also shown inhaling the sweet and zesty scented oil helps to suppress appetite and manage feelings of anxiety. You can also diffuse grapefruit with rosemary and ylang ylang to boost cognitive function.


Lemon essential oil is well known for its powerful antioxidants and anti-bacterial properties that contribute in boosting the immune system, removing both airborne and surface bacteria and facilitate wound healing. Its bright and invigorating scent, when diffused, reduces nausea, clears congestion to relieve colds and allergies, alleviate negative feelings and improve concentration.


When diluted correctly with carrier, lime essential oil speeds up wound healing for minor cuts and scrapes, and even works as a spot treatment. Its sharp and vibrant scent provides stress relief, increased mental clarity and productivity, and an increased appetite, as opposed to grapefruit essential oil. Just like lemon essential oil, it also possesses anti-bacterial properties making it an ideal ingredient to add to your homemade disinfectant.


Mandarin essential oil is known to be the most calming among the other citrus essential oils. It has an intensely sweet and fruity scent with grapefruit undertones that helps to induce calmness, manage insomnia and perk you up when you’re feeling down. When applied topically, it can treat spots; soothe muscle spasms, abdominal cramps, flatulence and nausea. Combining mandarin with neroli, lavender, and almond oil can also reduce scars.


Neroli, also known as orange blossom, bitter orange and sour orange, is the oil extracted from bitter orange tree. Its unique name originated from the 17th century in Italy, the Duchess of Bracciano (born Marie Anne de La Trémoille) rose in fame after using gloves infused in neroli as well as bathing in bath water infused with it. She was then hailed as “Princess of Nerola”. Its floral and citrusy scent produces an uplifting aroma that helps with insomnia and reduces the amount of cortisol, the stress hormone. When diluted with carrier, its anti-inflammatory properties combat acne and other forms of skin irritation.

Orange/Sweet Orange

Orange or sweet orange essential oil has an endless list of benefits ranging from boosting cognitive function to memory and mental clarity, managing emotional distress, managing troublesome sleep, inducing calmness, managing hormonal imbalance, supports the body’s detoxification process and also acts as a systematic aphrodisiac to improve low libido. Its sweet and cheerful scent also makes a great home spray to get rid of unpleasant or stale odours, and get rid of airborne bacteria to soothe allergies, colds and coughs.


Tangerine is a type of orange and is often confused for one, how it is differentiated is by its size (it’s smaller). The scent of the essential oil is very similar to mandarin and has similar qualities as well such as aiding with sleep, emotional imbalance and muscle cramps. Its antiseptic qualities are beneficial for minor wounds and cuts as it combats the growth and spread of bacteria while reducing inflammation. Tangerine essential oil is also believed to help lighten stretch marks when massaged with carrier oil.


Yuzu is believed to a cross-breed citrus fruit of a mandarin and ichang papeda (also known as citrus cavaleriei, native to China). Yuzu essential oil has a subtle floral scent with mandarin and grapefruit overtones. Use alone or combine with other citrus essential oils such as bergamot or sweet orange to lift your spirits, relieve tension and mental exhaustion. It is also great for assisting in healthier digestion and a higher quality of sleep. However, yuzu essential oil is not as widely available compared to the rest of the citrus essential oils. The brands that do sell yuzu essential oil are Edens Garden, Plant Therapy and Revive EO.

You can use them on their own or pair them with other essential oils. Citrus essential oils, especially bergamot, lemon and orange, go well with just about anything. From floral scents (chamomile, rose, ylang ylang etc.), woody scents (cedarwood, cypress, juniper berry etc.), minty scents (eucalyptus, peppermint, spearmint etc.), warm scents (carrot seed, cinnamon, frankincense etc.), herbaceous scents (basil, dill, oregano etc.), rich/intense scents (sandalwood, vertiver, vanilla etc.). You can diffuse them, add to homemade room sprays, homemade cleaning sprays, warm bath water for spa treatment and massage blends. Practice with care, remember to always carry out a patch test before usage and dilute with carrier for topical applications.