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Citrus reticulata


Citrus reticulata

[span class=alert]In regards to the Traditional Use and Therapeutic Action sections of Essential Oils, the oils are rated as is standard practice in the French school of aromatherapy and others. The ratings ranked from one (+) to four (++++) with four indicating the highest value, indicate the oil’s therapeutic value from a practicing clinician’s point of view. The French rating system mentioned are obtained from this book reference entitle ‘Les Cahiers Pratiques D'Aromatherapie Selon L'Ecole Francaise’ (Authors: Francine Baudry, Pascal Debauche & Dominique Baudoux). However, further clarification might be required and will be updated once additional information of the rating system is obtained.[/span]

Family Name


Genus Name


Vernacular Name

Mandarin, tangerine

Original Habitat

Although the Citrus reticulata tree is found in Southeast Asia and Japan, most of the essential oil is produced in Sicily. The slender tree grows to about 4 to 5 metres tall bearing white flowers, fruiting in late fall. The Mandarin tree is thought to have originated in Australia and to have been introduced to Asia from there. It requires a longer growing season with full sunlight and is currently cultivated globally.

Plant Part Used

Zest (thin outer layer of the skin)


C. reticulate essential oil is used as a flavouring in some beverages and foods. It is found as a fragrance ingredient in various skin care products such as soaps, lotions and ointments. It is also used in formulations in therapeutic aromatherapy.


Citrus skin oils are obtained by pressing, with cold pressing being the preferred method used.[1] Mandarin essential oil is a thin, yellow to yellow-green with a sweet light fragrance and a top note.

Chemical Constituents

Monoterpenes: Limonene (65-94%) and y-terpinene.
sinesal, methyl N-methylanthranilate
Long-chain unsaturated aliphatic aldehydes.[1][2]

Medicinal Uses

Tranquilizer, relaxing, sedative +++
Modulates C.N.S. +++ [3]

Traditional Use

Insomnia, anxiety, stress +++
Dyspepsia, gastralgia, aerophagia +++ [3]

 Antifungal: Citrus reticulata was tested against five strains of plant pathogenic fungi. The essential oil illustrated inhibitory effects against fungal sporulation, therefore, exhibiting antifungal effects.[4]

Antimicrobial: Citrus reticulata essential oil was examined against both gram-negative and gram-positive organisms. The results showed strong antimicrobial activity.[5]

Citrus reticulata oil is often part of a blend of oils and less often used as single oil.

Contraindications and Precautions

Not to be used in its pure form directly on the skin due to its aggressive nature. In fact, numerous animal studies have indicated that undiluted citrus oils have been found to cause tumors on the skin at the site of application.[6]



[span class=alert]Keep out of reach of children as oils are highly concentrated.Essential oils are irritating to the eyes.  Avoid contact with eye area.Always dilute essential oils with carrier oil, lotion, cream or gel even when using in diffuser or bath.Essential oils are sometimes prescribed to be used internally, but should only be used internally under professional supervision.[/span]

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  1) Botanical Info


  1. Bauer K, Garbe D, Surburg H. Common fragrance and flavor materials: preparation, properties and uses. Germany: Wiley VCH; 1997.
  2. Muhoho NS, et al. Volatile constituents of mandarin (Citrus reticulata Blanco) peel oil from Burundi. J Essen Oil Res. 2006;18(6):659-662.
  3. Schnaubelt Phd. K. Advanced aromatherapy: the science of essential oil therapy. Healing Arts Press; 1995.
  4. Chutia M. Antifungal activity and chemical composition of Citrus reticulata Blanco essential oil against phytopathogens from North East India. Food Sci Tech. Apr2009;42(3):777-780.
  5. Ayoola1 GA, et al. Evaluation of the chemical constituents and the antimicrobial activity of the volatile oil of Citrus reticulata fruit (Tangerine fruit peel) from South West Nigeria. Afr J Biotech. Jul2008;7(13):2227-2231.
  6. Tisserand R, Balacs T. Essential oil safety. Churchill Livingston Press; 2006.

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