Clary Sage Essential Oil (Salvia sclarea)


Clary Sage may also be referred to as Europe sage. It is typically processed using steam distilled as a method for extracting oil from the leaves and flowers/buds.


Clary Sage comes from the flowers of Salvia sclarea plants. It has a sweet earthy, herbaceous, floral and slightly fruity sent. It has both a relaxing and an invigorating effect.

Essential Facts

  • Aroma Description:

    Earthy Floral Fruity Herbaceous

  • Common Name(s): Europe sage
  • Synonyms(s) for Salvia sclarea: Aethiopis sclarea, Salvia altilabrosa, Salvia calostachya, Salvia coarctata, Salvia haematodes, Salvia lucana, Salvia pamirica, Salvia sclarea var. calostachya, Salvia sclarea var. turkestanica, Salvia simsiana, Salvia turkestanica, Sclarea vulgaris

  • Botanical Family: Lamiaceae
  • Botanical Genus: Salvia
  • Chemical Family: Esters, Monoterpenols
  • Major Compounds: Linalyl Acetate, Linalool, a-Terpineol, Germacrene D, B-Caryophyllene
  • Perfumery Note: Middle
  • Consistency: Thin to Medium
  • Strength of Initial Aroma: Medium - Strong
  • Color: Pale Yellow
  • Indigenous Country: South Africa
  • Cultivation: Unsprayed
  • Processing Methods: Steam Distilled
  • Part Typically Used: Leaves and Flowers/Buds
  • Shelf Life: 5 years
  • Vegan Vegan

Essential Details

Cautions & Safety

Cautions when using Clary Sage:

Tisserand and Young do not indicate any known hazards for steam distilled Clary Sage Oil but recommend a dermal maximum of 0.25% for Clary Sage Absolute. Reading Tisserand and Young's full profile is recommended. [Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young, Essential Oil Safety (Second Edition. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier, 2014), 253.]

Purchon and Cantele indicate that there is a moderate risk of sensitization in some individuals. [Neryls Purchon and Lora Cantele, Complete Aromatherapy & Essential Oils Handbook for Everyday Wellness (Toronto ON: Robert Rose, 2014), 50.]

Numerous sources recommend avoiding Clary Sage Oil while drinking alcohol and while driving due to the oil's potential narcotic effect. [Julia Lawless, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (Rockport, MA: Element Books, 1995), 213.]

Various sources state that the sclareol content contained within Clary Sage may induce an "estrogen-like action." For that reason, it would be wise for those with breast cancer, at high risk for breast cancer or that need to carefully regulate their estrogen levels avoid Clary Sage. Having said that, Aromatherapy Science by Maria Lis-Balchin states the following: "This essential oil is quoted widely in the aromatherapy literature as being estrogenic, but clear scientific evidence has not been forthcoming. However, due to the spasmolytic effect on the uterusin vitro, caution should be used in pregnancy and parturition." [Maria Lis-Balchin, Aromatherapy Science: A Guide for Healthcare Professionals (United Kingdom: Pharmaceutical Press, 2006), 169.]

Safety Precautions for Clary Sage:

Do not take any oils internally and do not apply undiluted essential oils, absolutes, CO2s or other concentrated essences onto the skin without advanced essential oil knowledge or consultation from a qualified aromatherapy practitioner. If you are pregnant, epileptic, have liver damage, have cancer, or have any other medical problem, use oils only under the proper guidance of a qualified aromatherapy practitioner. Use extreme caution when using oils with children and be sure to first read the recommended dilution ratios for children. Consult a qualified aromatherapy practitioner before using oils with children, the elderly, if you have medical issues or are taking medications. For in-depth information on oil safety issues, read Essential Oil Safety by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young.

Avoid Clary Sage if:

Clary sage oil can cause drowsiness so don't use with alcohol.

Energetic, Spiritual, and Emotional Qualities


Clary Sage Articles or Publications: