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Clove Bud Profile

Essential Oil Data: CLOVE BUD

(Syzygium aromaticum, Eugenia caryophyllata)

Botannical Family: Myrtaceae

Sourced: India, Madagascar, Sri Lanka

Distilled: from flower buds

Shelf life 4-5 yrs

Aromatic Notes – middle notes, spicy and warm, sweet and woody

Clove Bud’s inviting aroma is instantly recognized most anywhere and is a much loved aroma all over the globe. It speaks old world charm and childhood memories to anyone who grew up baking, drinking chai tea, or seasoning a holiday ham. It is bold, pervasive, and welcoming. Isn’t it ironic that “love” makes up most of its name? The aromatic notes of Clove directly represent the energetic and emotional properties of this essential oil (not always the case in aromatherapy).

The strength of Clove’s characteristics translates into the physical properties as well. Where the aroma is warm and inviting it in turn encourages circulation and warms the body – so much so that it must be used in low amounts in order to avoid irritation or sensitization (read more about this in the Safety section below). So, while it is great for pain, inflammation, rheumatic conditions, digestion, and the like, it should be blended with other skin nurturing oils to help avoid upsetting the skin or mucous membranes. If diffusing, be careful to do so in short time frames (like 5 – 10 minutes) and sparse rotations (perhaps 2 or 3 times per day). If it is a low percentage in a blend (like a thieves blend) then you will not have to be as concerned about the frequency.

Clove Bud essential oil belongs to a small Chemical Family of EOs called Phenols. Phenols are made mostly of one constituent and tend to have strong actions – often too strong. In this case the main constituent is Eugenol at >70%. In this case, because it has fewer constituents in higher percentages, there are fewer therapeutic properties in higher strengths as well.

Are you getting a strong sense that Clove Bud’s strength is its… fortitude?

Energetic Properties – fortifying, uplifting, comforting, encouraging, offers confidence and resilience, determination, emotionally settling and strengthening

Therapeutic Properties

Clove Bud has a solid reputation for pain relief. Perhaps you have heard someone recommend rubbing clove oil on the gum of an aching tooth. Eugenol offers pain analgesic actions as well as anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Remember though, Clove Bud essential oil is powerful enough to irritate and even cause a burn type injury to skin and mucous membranes, so low dilutions and with nurturing oils is key to enjoying Clove Bud with no regrets! Eugenol also has strong antifungal, antimicrobial, antioxidant, and antiviral properties. Its carminative action aids digestion in the body as well as stimulates the circulatory and immune systems.

Chemical Families Profile Phenols – Eugenol (73.5 – 96.9%): analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anticoagulant, anticonvulsant, antifungal (Candida), antihistaminic, antioxidant, antispasmodic, antithrombotic, antitumoral, antiulcerogenic, antiviral, hypotensive, liver protective, neuroprotective, vasodilator. Sesquiterpenes – Beta-Caryophyllene (0.6-12.4%): analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antibiofilm, antinociceptive, antispasmodic, anti-tumoral, antiviral, anxyolitic, immunomodulatory, local anesthetic, neuroprotective. Esters Eugenyl Acetate (0.5-10.7%): antibacterial, antifungal, antioxidant, antiviral.

Applications Clove Bud is strong oil and it doesn’t take a lot for it to irritate skin (including “inner” skin). It is best tempered in blends with other skin friendly oils.

Digestive Support – Clove is carminative and warming. It encourages circulation and relieves digestive discomfort when paired with softer oils like Sweet Marjoram.

Immune Support – Clove Bud has antimicrobial and anti-infectious properties. Inhaling or diffusing Clove Bud helps invigorate the immune system. Some people love Clove and prefer to use it alone, but it is recommended to pair it with nourishing oil like Palmarosa to avoid irritating the inner skin of the respiratory system.

Aches, pains, stiffness, etc. – Clove Bud is great in a blend for circulation and mobility but should be paired with skin nurturing oils like German Chamomile.

Emotional Support – Clove is wonderful for encouragement and reviving at the end of a monster day. It can be very centering when feeling overwhelmed. People love to inhale it on its own – which is fine in small amounts, but again – should be paired with a more gentle oil like Clary Sage.

Skin - Clove Bud has remarkable antibacterial and antifungal actions. It can be used in low concentrations in combination with a skin-friendly and antimicrobial oil such as Lemongrass ct Rhodinol or Rosalina.

ESSENTIAL OIL SAFETY: We do not promote oral use of the essential oil without the direction of a certified aromatherapist or health care professional. Clove Bud oil can be irritating to the skin and cause sensitization. Tisserand recommends dilution rate at 0.5% in a topical blend (approximately 2.5 drops for 1oz carrier). May inhibit blood clotting if high in methyleugenol content . Avoid using on young children to avoid irritating skin and mucous membrane. More safety info available at

References & Studies: ANTIMICROBIAL/ANTIBACTERIAL von Thadden C, Altun E, Aydogdu M, Edirisinghe M, Ahmed J. Antimicrobial Fibrous Bandage-like Scaffolds Using Clove Bud Oil. J Funct Biomater. 2022 Aug 30;13(3):136. doi: 10.3390/jfb13030136. PMID: 36135571; PMCID: PMC9501437.

Alanazi AK, Alqasmi MH, Alrouji M, Kuriri FA, Almuhanna Y, Joseph B, Asad M. Antibacterial Activity of Syzygium aromaticum (Clove) Bud Oil and Its Interaction with Imipenem in Controlling Wound Infections in Rats Caused by Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Molecules. 2022 Dec 5;27(23):8551. doi: 10.3390/molecules27238551. PMID: 36500645; PMCID: PMC9736006.

Dunn LL, Harness ML, Smith DM, Gorman SJ, Zhong Q, Davidson PM, Critzer FJ. Essential Oil Emulsions as Postharvest Sanitizers To Mitigate Salmonella Cross-Contamination on Peppers. J Food Prot. 2019 Jan;82(1):159-163. doi: 10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-18-190. PMID: 30702935.

Ma X, Shi W, Zhang Y. Essential Oils with High Activity against Stationary Phase Bartonella henselae. Antibiotics (Basel). 2019 Nov 30;8(4):246. doi: 10.3390/antibiotics8040246. PMID: 31801196; PMCID: PMC6963529.

Besra M, Kumar V. In vitro investigation of antimicrobial activities of ethnomedicinal plants against dental caries pathogens. 3 Biotech. 2018 May;8(5):257. doi: 10.1007/s13205-018-1283-2. Epub 2018 May 14. PMID: 29765815; PMCID: PMC5950842.

Warnke PH, Becker ST, Podschun R, Sivananthan S, Springer IN, Russo PA, Wiltfang J, Fickenscher H, Sherry E. The battle against multi-resistant strains: Renaissance of antimicrobial essential oils as a promising force to fight hospital-acquired infections. J Craniomaxillofac Surg. 2009 Oct;37(7):392-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jcms.2009.03.017. Epub 2009 May 26. PMID: 19473851.

ANTIFUNGAL: Parker RA, Gabriel KT, Graham KD, Butts BK, Cornelison CT. Antifungal Activity of Select Essential Oils against Candida auris and Their Interactions with Antifungal Drugs. Pathogens. 2022 Jul 22;11(8):821. doi: 10.3390/pathogens11080821. PMID: 35894044; PMCID: PMC9331469.

Ansari MJ, Al-Ghamdi A, Usmani S, Khan KA, Alqarni AS, Kaur M, Al-Waili N. In vitro evaluation of the effects of some plant essential oils on Ascosphaera apis, the causative agent of Chalkbrood disease. Saudi J Biol Sci. 2017 Jul;24(5):1001-1006. doi: 10.1016/j.sjbs.2016.04.016. Epub 2016 May 30. PMID: 28663695; PMCID: PMC5478295.

Pinto E, Vale-Silva L, Cavaleiro C, Salgueiro L. Antifungal activity of the clove essential oil from Syzygium aromaticum on Candida, Aspergillus and dermatophyte species. Journal of Medical Microbiology. 2009 Nov;58(Pt 11):1454-1462. DOI: 10.1099/jmm.0.010538-0. PMID: 19589904.


Daniel, A.N., Sartoretto, S.M., Schmidt, G., Caparroz-Assef, M., Bersani-Amado, C.A. and Cuman, R.K.N. (2008) Antiinflammatory and antinociceptive activities of eugenol essential oil in experimental animal models. Brazilian Journal of Pharmacognosy 19, 212-217.

Batiha GE, Alkazmi LM, Wasef LG, Beshbishy AM, Nadwa EH, Rashwan EK. Syzygium aromaticum L. (Myrtaceae): Traditional Uses, Bioactive Chemical Constituents, Pharmacological and Toxicological Activities. Biomolecules. 2020 Jan 30;10(2):202. doi: 10.3390/biom10020202. PMID: 32019140; PMCID: PMC7072209.


Hamed SF, Sadek Z, Edris A. Antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of clove bud essential oil and eugenol nanoparticles in alcohol-free microemulsion. J Oleo Sci. 2012;61(11):641-8. doi: 10.5650/jos.61.641. PMID: 23138253.

Rosarior VL, Lim PS, Wong WK, Yue CS, Yam HC, Tan SA. Antioxidant-rich Clove Extract, A Strong Antimicrobial Agent against Urinary Tract Infections-causing Bacteria in vitro. Trop Life Sci Res. 2021 Jun;32(2):45-63. doi: 10.21315/tlsr2021.32.2.4. Epub 2021 Jun 29. PMID: 34367514; PMCID: PMC8300942.


Tragoolpua Y, Jatisatienr A. Anti-herpes simplex virus activities of Eugenia caryophyllus (Spreng.) Bullock & S. G. Harrison and essential oil, eugenol. Phytother Res. 2007 Dec;21(12):1153-8. doi: 10.1002/ptr.2226. PMID: 17628885.

Chaieb K, Hajlaoui H, Zmantar T, Kahla-Nakbi AB, Rouabhia M, Mahdouani K, Bakhrouf A. The chemical composition and biological activity of clove essential oil, Eugenia caryophyllata (Syzigium aromaticum L. Myrtaceae): a short review. Phytother Res. 2007 Jun;21(6):501-6. doi: 10.1002/ptr.2124. PMID: 17380552.


Carrasco FR, Schmidt G, Romero AL, Sartoretto JL, Caparroz-Assef SM, Bersani-Amado CA, Cuman RK. Immunomodulatory activity of Zingiber officinale Roscoe, Salvia officinalis L. and Syzygium aromaticum L. essential oils: evidence for humor- and cell-mediated responses. J Pharm Pharmacol. 2009 Jul;61(7):961-7. doi: 10.1211/jpp/61.07.0017. PMID: 19589240.

Saad, Muller and Lobstein. Major bioactivities and mechanism of action of essential oils and their components. Flavor and Fragrance Journal 2013 Sept; 28(5):269-79.


Tisserand, R. and Young, R. (2014) Essential Oil Safety 2nd Edition. Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.


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