Frankincense (Frankincense carteri) Essential Oil (Boswellia sacra)


Frankincense may also be referred to as Incense, Bible frankincense, Boswellia carterii, Olibanum tree, Sacred Frankincense™, Frankincense Sacred (Sacra). It is typically processed in South Arabia using steam or hydro distillation as a method for extracting oil from the gum/resin.


Frankincense (or olibanum) oil comes from the resin (dried sap) of the Boswellia sacra (also known as Boswellia carterii) tree that has been used and valued since ancient times for its medicinal, cosmetic, aromatic and spiritual applications. In Christianity, Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh were the gifts given to the baby Jesus by the three wise men. It has an sweet, woody, spicy scent. It has an antiseptic and uplifting effect. There are several species and varieties of Frankincense trees, each producing a slightly different type of resin and essential oil. Differences in soil and climate create even more diversity of the resin, even within the same species. In general all Frankincense essential oils have many, many benefits to offer. It is wonderful for the skin. This essential oil is both cicatrisant and cytophylactic. It is skin healing and effective on boils, acne and scarring on the skin as well as to assist stretch marks to fade. Being cytophlactic, it promotes the regeneration of healthy cells and keeps the existing cells and tissues healthy. Also effective as an antiseptic on wounds and cuts. Try using it in a facial cream for wrinkles too. Great for digestive issues. Frankincense speeds up the secretion of digestive juices and facilitates peristaltic motion. It is also a carminative giving relief from gas and indigestion. Frankincense is a powerful expectorant and very effective for respiratory issues such as colds, flu, asthma, and other lung issues. Relieves bronchitis and congestion.

Essential Facts

  • Aroma Description:

    Balsamic Earthy Exotic Fresh Resinous Rich Slightly citrus Slightly musky Warm

  • Common Name(s): Incense, Bible frankincense, Boswellia carterii, Olibanum tree, Sacred Frankincense™, Frankincense Sacred (Sacra)
  • Synonyms(s) for Boswellia sacra: Boswellia bhaw-dajiana, Boswellia bhaw-dajiana serrulata, Boswellia carteri, Boswellia carteri undulato-crenata, Boswellia undulato-crenata

  • Botanical Family: Burseraceae
  • Botanical Genus: Boswellia
  • Chemical Family: Monoterpenes
  • Major Compounds: a-Pinene a-Phellandrene (+)-Limonene B-Myrcene B-Pinene B-Caryophyllene p-Cymene Terpinen-4-ol Verbenone Sabinene Linalool, a-Phellandrene, (+)-Limonene, B-Myrcene, B-Pinene, B-Caryophyllene, p-Cymene, Terpinen-4-ol, Verbenone, Sabinene, Linalool
  • Perfumery Note: Base
  • Consistency: Thin
  • Strength of Initial Aroma: Mild - Medium
  • Color: Light to golden yellow
  • Countries of Production: South Arabia
  • Indigenous Country: Somalia, Yemen (Hadramaut and Mahrah) and Oman (Dhofar)
  • Cultivation: Wild Harvested
  • Processing Methods: Steam or Hydro Distillation
  • Part Typically Used: Gum/Resin
  • Shelf Life: 3 - 4 years
  • Ethically and sustainably sourced Ethically and sustainably sourced
  • Vegan Vegan
  • Pregnancy Safe Considered safe when pregnant or nursing
  • Not Child Safe Not recommend or safe for children

Essential Details

Benefits & Uses

May be benefitial for addressing the following ailments:

Aches Chills Colds Menstruation : Excess ( Menorrhagia ) Menstruation : Lack of Periods (Amenorrhea) Scar Tissue Sinusitis Skin : All types Skin : Mature Stretch Marks Sun Burn : Mild

Therapeutic Benefits of Frankincense:

Analgesic Anti-anxiety Anti-arthritic Anti-asthmatic Anti-cancer Anti-depressant Anti-inflammatory Anti-microbial Anti-rheumatic Anti-septic Anti-spasmodic Astringent Calming Carminative Cicatrisant Decongestant Digestive tonic Diuretic Emmenagogic Expectorant Immune support Relaxant Sedative Tonic Uterine tonic Wound healing

Other Uses for Frankincense:

Balances oily skin, Rejuvenates mature and tired skin. Encourages the production of new cells. Soothes and heals compromised skin. Soothes the mind, and exceptional meditation aid.

Incense Natural Perfumery

Cautions & Safety

Cautions when using Frankincense:

Tisserand and Young precaution to avoid use of the oil if it has oxidized. Skin sensitization is more likely when using oxidized Frankincense Oil. 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), 287-289.]

Safety Precautions for Frankincense:

No safety issues associated with Frankincense essential oil. However, if oxidized may cause skin irritation. 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.


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