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19 brands analyzed for rankings. 46 hours spent in research. 70+ references used for information.
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Living Pure Frankincense

Living Pure Frankincense Essential Oil | 100% Natural & Organic | Therapeutic Grade Oils | Use Topically or in Diffuser | Perfect for Aging Skin, Healing Cuts, Eczema & Poison Ivy Relief
  • Natural without toxins
  • Easy to use for most users
  • Quick noticeable results

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Plant Therapy Frankincense

Plant Therapy Frankincense Serrata Organic Essential Oil 100% Pure, USDA Certified Organic, Undiluted, Natural Aromatherapy, Therapeutic Grade 10 mL (⅓ oz)
  • USDA Certified Product
  • No fillers and additives
  • Value for money

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doTERRA Frankincense Oil

doTERRA Frankincense Essential Oil - 15 mL
  • Noticeable results for most users
  • Highly recommended by most
  • Users found the scent appealing

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Frankincense oil, popularly known due to its biblical reference in “Three Wise Men” given as a gift to baby Jesus, has been well known for its medicinal, fumigant and cosmetic properties for ages. [1]

The oil is commonly obtained via steam distillation of the resin produced by a group of trees of the genus Boswellia (Burseraceae). The trees are found in India, Africa and Middle East countries.

The oil has a woody, spicy and haunting odour. [2] It is also known as olibanum.

Not only is frankincense oil used in aromatherapy, but also in creams, gums and most commonly as oral supplements.

It has been scientifically proven that boswellic acids present in frankincense oil may help in treating inflammation and pain related to arthritis, gingivitis and plaque, gastrointestinal disorders like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, and may prove to be extremely useful in reducing tumour size and volume related to breast, brain, prostate and pancreatic cancer.

It is recommended that frankincense oil may not be used by pregnant women, lactating mothers and children.

Some people may also develop hypersensitivity to the oil if applied to the skin, either directly or as a cream.

Product Review of Best Frankincense Essential Oil 

1.best overall rating

Organic Frankincense Essential Oil by Living Pure Essential Oils

Living Pure Frankincense Essential Oil | 100% Natural & Organic | Therapeutic Grade Oils | Use Topically or in Diffuser | Perfect for Aging Skin, Healing Cuts, Eczema & Poison Ivy Relief

Living Pure Essential Oils, based in Michigan, USA, is a manufacturer of natural organic essential oils.

The therapeutic and aromatherapy grade oil has a net volume of 15 ml. The key ingredient includes 100% pure Frankincense oil

Some of the key USPs of the product are:

  • Natural without toxins, additives or fillers
  • Unfiltered and undiluted for effective potency and results
  • Versatile oil and can be applied with carrier oils or lotions

Here are key Pros and Cons based on Analysis of Customer Reviews-

  • Most users found the product quality potent and satisfying
  • Quick noticeable results for most users
  • Highly recommended by most users
  • Easy to use for most users
  • Value for money
  • Most users found the scent appealing
  • Most consumers lauded the longevity of the product
  • Few users found product quality and smell inconsistent

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2.best overall rating

Plant Therapy Frankincense Serrata Essential Oil

Plant Therapy Frankincense Serrata Organic Essential Oil 100% Pure, USDA Certified Organic, Undiluted, Natural Aromatherapy, Therapeutic Grade 10 mL (⅓ oz)

Plant Therapy, based in Montana, USA, is a manufacturer of natural organic essential oils and supplies.

The therapeutic grade essential oil has a net volume of 10 ml. The key ingredient includes 100% pure and natural organic Frankincense essential oil.

Some of the key USPs of the product are:

  • USDA certified organic product
  • Non-GMO, pure and cruelty free
  • Batch tested for purity and potency
  • No fillers and additives

Here are key Pros and Cons based on Analysis of Customer Reviews-

  • Most users found the product quality potent and satisfying
  • Quick noticeable results for most users
  • Most users found the effects long lasting
  • Suitable to be used with carrier oils
  • A few consumers were dissatisfied with the customer service

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3.best overall rating

doTERRA Frankincense Essential Oil

doTERRA Frankincense Essential Oil - 15 mL

doTerra, based in Utah, the USA, is a multi-level marketing company selling natural organic essential oils and related products.

The therapeutic grade essential oil has a net volume of 15 ml. The key ingredient includes 100% Boswellia Frankincense essential oil.

Some of the key USPs of the product are:

  • Each batch tested by an independent lab for guaranteed potency and purity
  • The aroma which promotes feelings of relaxation

Here are key Pros and Cons based on Analysis of Customer Reviews-

  • Most users found the product quality satisfying
  • Noticeable results for most users
  • Easy to use the product for most users
  • Value for money
  • Most users found the scent appealing
  • Few users found product quality and smell inconsistent

Check Reviews & Offers on Amazon

4.best overall rating

Zongle Organic Frankincense Essential Oil

Zongle USDA Certified Organic Frankincense Essential Oil, Safe To Ingest, Boswellia Serrata, 1 OZ

Zongle Therapeutics, based in Georgia, USA, is a manufacturer of a wide range of natural organic essential oils and beauty products.

The therapeutic grade essential oil has a net volume of 30 ml.

The serving size is 1 drop and the servings per container amount to 500. The key ingredient includes 60 mg of Frankincense Raising in each serving.

Some of the key USPs of the product are:

  • USDA certified organic product
  • Naturally produced without using pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, irradiation and genetic engineering
  • Vegan, gluten-free, parabens free and cruelty free
  • Undiluted for potency and purity

Zongle USDA Certified Organic Frankincense Essential Oil, Safe To Ingest, Boswellia Serrata, 1 OZ Here are key Pros and Cons based on Analysis of Customer Reviews-

  • Most users found the product quality potent and satisfying
  • Value for money
  • Most users found the scent appealing
  • A few users reported faulty packaging

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5.best overall rating

Frankincense Essential Oil by Essential Oil Labs

Frankincense Essential Oil - Highest Quality Therapeutic Grade Backed by Research - 1 oz Bottle with Glass Dropper - 100% Pure and Natural Premium Select by Essential Oil Labs

Essential Oil Labs, based in California, USA, is a manufacturer of a wide range of essential oils, skin care and beauty products.

The therapeutic grade essential oil has a net volume of 30 ml. The key ingredient includes 100% pure and natural Frankincense essential oil.

Some of the key USPs of the product are:

  • Ethicaly sourced with no fillers, additives and chemicals
  • Drug free antidepressant carefully blended for purity and potency
  • Undiluted steam distilled oil

Here are key Pros and Cons based on Analysis of Customer Reviews-

  • Noticeable results for most users
  • Easy to use product for most users
  • Value for money
  • Most users found the scent appealing
  • A few users reported that the product is not long lasting

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6.best overall rating

Viva Naturals Pure Frankincense Essential Oil

Frankincense Essential Oil Therapeutic Grade, 4 oz.| 100% Pure Boswellia Serrata Frankensence Essential Oil, Third-Party Tested for Quality & Purity

Viva Naturals, based in Ontario, Canada, is a manufacturer of supplements, superfoods and beauty products.

The therapeutic grade essential oil has a net volume of 118 ml. The key ingredient includes 100% pure therapeutic grade lavender essential oil.

Some of the key USPs of the product are:

  • Rich, earthy complex with no fillers and additives
  • Third party tested for purity and potency
  • Stored in premium glass bottle for protection from UV light

Here are key Pros and Cons based on Analysis of Customer Reviews-

  • Most users found the product quality satisfying
  • Easy to use
  • Value for money
  • Few users found product quality and smell inconsistent
  • A few users found the ingredient quality questionable

Check Reviews & Offers on Amazon

7.best overall rating

US Organic Pure Frankincense Essential Oil

US Organic 100% Pure Frankincense Essential Oil - USDA Certified Organic - 10 ml - Improved caps and droppers, Use Topically or in Diffuser - Perfect for Aging Skin - Suitable for All Skin Types

US Organic, based in USA, is a manufacturer of a range of USDA certified organic products.

The therapeutic grade essential oil has a net volume of 10 ml. The key ingredient includes 100% pure therapeutic grade Frankincense essential oil.

Some of the key USPs of the product are:

  • Natural, unfiltered and undiluted for purity and potency
  • Cruelty-free and USDA certified organic product

Here are key Pros and Cons based on Analysis of Customer Reviews-

  • Noticeable results for most users
  • Easy to use product for most users
  • Value for money
  • Most users found the scent appealing
  • Few users experienced no improvements

Check Reviews & Offers on Amazon

Most research has been carried out on oral formulation of Boswellia extract whose phytoconstituents are common with frankincense essential oil.

This includes boswellic acids and terpenes, and thus both have similar indications in terms of health benefits.

The essential oil can be used in aromatherapy or for topical application if present in a carrier oil, cream or another base. However, this should be done with the recommendation of a health care physician.

Pharmacology

The phytoconstituents of the resin from which the frankincense oil is obtained varies depending on the species from which it is obtained. They have high terpenoid content that imparts to the oil its many medicinal properties. [3]

Boswellic acids (BA) are essentially ɑ- and β-BA, acetylated ɑ- and β-BA (ABA) 11-keto-β-BA (KBA) and 3-O-acetyl-11-keto-β-Boswellic acid (AKBA). [4]

Amongst these, the two most puissant constituents are AKBA and KBA, responsible for anti-inflammatory action.

BA is a novel specific non-redox inhibitor of the 5-lipoxygenase enzyme, that is responsible for leukotriene synthesis in neutrophils. [5]

Elastase enzyme, one of the key factors that play a role in causing emphysema, is inhibited by BAs, in human leukocytes. [6]

BAs also competitively inhibit binding of DNA to topoisomerase I and II enzymes and arrest DNA synthesis in human leukemia promyelocytic cells. [7],[8],[9]

BAs also inhibit the classical complement pathway by impeding the activity of C2 convertase enzyme, thus inhibiting hemolytic activity. [10]

Benefits of Frankincense Essential Oil

Best Frankincense Essential Oil

1. It helps in Treating Arthritis

Chronic inflammation leads to many diseases such as osteoarthritis, that affects the joints due to cartilage degeneration, and rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune disorder where the joints become chronically inflamed causing severe stiffness and pain.

Confidence: High

In a double-blind trial carried out on 70 patients suffering from osteoarthritis, 5-loxin, a novel Boswellia serrata extract enriched with 30% AKBA, was given in the doses 100mg and 250mg, for 90 days, daily.

Improvement was noted in all scales of joint pain relief, and a reduction in metalloproteinase-3 was also observed in the synovial fluid, further indicating a decrement of inflammation. [11]

In another study done on 56 subjects suffering from osteoarthritis, all measured parameters of the condition ameliorated, after treatment with 100mg of Boswellia extract enriched with 20% AKBA, in a short span of 30 days.

In an Ayurvedic trial carried out on osteoarthritic patients, 6g of shallaki (Boswellia serrata extract) was given for 2 months that substantially decreased the symptoms associated with the condition and relieve pain in the joints. [12]

In a comparative study done to show the efficacy of a novel Boswellia extract, Aflapin, it was noted that its bioavailability was 51.78% more in experimental animals as compared to 5-loxin.

In general, Aflapin was deemed to be the better treatment for osteoarthritis as it helped in recovering from articular cartilage damage, faster and better. [13]

Similar results were seen in a comparative, double-blind, study carried out on patients suffering from osteoarthritis, using Aflapin and 5-loxin. [14]

2. It improves Gut Health

Owing to its anti-inflammatory properties, frankincense oil can be used for treating Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, both being inflammatory disorders occurring in the gut. Chronic diarrhea may also be treated using the essential oil.

Confidence: High

In a comparative study carried out between B. serrata extract and mesalazine (common therapeutic agent for Crohn’s disease) in patients suffering from Crohn’s disease, the B. serrata extract showed higher efficacy in improving the symptoms of the condition and was also safer as compared to mesalazine. [15]

Another study carried out, where 108 patients in remission from Crohn’s disease were given 2 capsules (400mg per day) of B. serrata extract, showed good tolerability in maintaining remission from the condition. [16]

Clinical remission of patients suffering from collagenous colitis was higher for patients treated with B. serrata extract at a dose of 400 mg three times daily for 6 weeks, compared to patients on placebo. [17]

In another study carried out on patients suffering from chronic colitis, a dose of 900 mg thrice daily of olibanum, seemed to be effective in treating the disease and helping in remission more efficiently as compared to sulphasalazine. [18]

In an experimental rat model of ulcerative colitis, B. serrata extract was given in doses of 34.2mg/kg/day.

A significant decrease in nitric oxide, lipid peroxidation and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and rapid recovery in tissue injury indicated the efficacious treatment of ulcerative colitis, due to antiinflammatory and antioxidant effects. [19]

Diarrhea caused by barium- and acetylcholine-induced contractions in the guinea pig ileum could be treated using Boswellia serrata gum resin extract (BSE), by decreasing intestinal motility. [20]

3. It helps in treating Respiratory Ailments like Asthma

It helps in treating Respiratory Ailments like AsthmaAsthma is also an inflammatory disorder and frankincense oil aids in treating it by activating the MAPK pathway, mobilizing intracellular Ca2+ and inhibiting leukotriene synthesis. [21]

Other respiratory disorders like pulmonary fibrosis and bronchitis may also be treated with the use of this oil.

Confidence: High

In a double-blind study carried out on 40 patients suffering from bronchial asthma, gum resin of Boswellia serrata (aka salai guggal in ayurveda) was given in the dose of 300 mg thrice daily for 6 weeks.

70% of patients showed disappearance of the symptoms associated with asthma such as dyspnoea, rhonchi, frequency of attacks and a decrement in the eosinophilic count and ESR. [22]

In a study carried out in a murine model of acute inflammatory asthma, treatment with Boswellic acids showed a decrease in allergen-induced inflammatory pathway where reduced levels of Th2 cytokines, immunoglobulin-related to hypersensitivity (IgE) and suppressed airway inflammatory cell infiltration was observed.

Thus, Boswellia extract was effective in treating asthma. [23]

In the rat model of pulmonary fibrosis, it was shown that rats treated with Boswellic acid extract (1g/kg) exhibited decreased collagen accumulation, airway dysfunction and injury, preventing the progression of pulmonary fibrosis, by suppression of 5-lipoxygenase activity. [24]

54 patients suffering from bronchial asthma were treated with either olibanum extracted from B. carterii, or liquorice obtained from Glycyrrhiza glabra.

In a period of 21 days, there was a marked reduction in the frequency of asthma attacks in the patients, along with symptomatic recovery. [25]

Case reports of treating children suffering from respiratory illnesses and symptoms such as tachypnea, pneumonia, and cough, with frankincense oil have been recorded. [26]

4. It helps in treating Dental and Oral Problems

Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, frankincense oil is used to treat gingivitis. Also, because of its antimicrobial activity, the oil is used to eliminate bacteria that cause plaque, cavities and other gum related diseases.

Confidence: High

In a double-blind trial carried out on female high school students suffering from plaque-induced gingivitis, were treated with either 0.1 g of frankincense extract or 0.2 g of its powder.

Treatment for 14 days caused a significant decrease in the bleeding, plaque and inflammatory indices, thus proving to be an effective therapeutic. [27]

In another study carried out, 5 females were made to chew frankincense chewing gums. Their saliva samples were analyzed after 0,1,2,3,4,5 hr respectively, after chewing the gum.

Results showed a marked decrease in the colony-forming units/ml of the microbes in the saliva, with an increase in time of chewing gum. [28]

In a comparative study carried out between Boswellia serrata and Nigella sativa, the extracts of these plants were effective in having a bactericidal effect on Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans, the pathogen responsible for causing aggressive periodontitis.

This was due to the ability of the extracts to wipe out entire biofilms of the bacteria. [29]

A study carried out to test the antimicrobial property of Acetyl-11-keto-β-boswellic acid (AKBA) on oral cavity-causing bacteria such as Streptococcus mutans and Actinomyces viscosus, showed that AKBA inhibited the formation of biofilms of these organisms, and thus frankincense oil containing AKBA can be used as an effective treatment for preventing dental cavities. [30]

5. It may help in Cancer

Frankincense oil has phytoconstituents that imparts to it antioxidative and anti-tumorigenic activity. These include β-boswellic acids, one of the most potent anti-carcinogenic agents, and ɑ-boswellic acids that inhibit protein synthesis thus preventing progression of cancers. [31],[32]

Confidence: Moderate

In a breast cancer patient with brain metastases, where standard therapy for cancer had failed to help, treatment with Boswellia serrata extract was chosen, where a dose of 800 mg of the extract was given thrice daily for a period of 10 weeks.

A CT scan of her brain was taken after 10 weeks, which showed the disappearance of any signs of brain metastases in the patient. [33]

In 44 patients suffering from primary or secondary malignant cerebral tumors, undergoing radiotherapy were given 4.2 g of B. Serrata extract every day.

It was seen that there was a marked decrease in cerebral oedema, a typical symptom of brain tumors.[34]

Additionally, 12 patients suffering from malignant glioma showed a decrease in oedema around the tumor, when treated with 3.6 g of Boswellia extract for 7 days prior to surgery.

In the first such study, 12 patients with malignant glioma were given 3600 mg/day of Boswellia extract (standardised to 60% boswellic acids) for 7 days prior to surgery. [35]

In vitro studies carried out on breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231, showed that terpenes such as ɑ-pinene (61.56%), ɑ-amyrin (20.6%), β-amyrin (8.1%), β-phellandrene (1.47%) and camphene (1.04%), present in frankincense oil caused the death of the cells, in a concentration-dependent manner.[36]

In an in vitro study carried out on human pancreatic cell line, showed that frankincense oil suppressed the cell growth and induced cell death in pancreatic cells, because of cell membrane damage and cytotoxicity.

In the same study carried out on xenograft rat model, the size and volume of the pancreatic tumors decreased considerably after treatment with frankincense oil. [37]

In vitro study carried out on human bladder cancer cell lines- J82 and UROtsa were treated with frankincense oil that elicited specific cancer cell death, via NRF-2 mediated oxidative stress. [38]

Another in vitro study carried out on mouse melanoma cells showed that BC-4, a compound isolated from Boswellia carteri Birdw, had a cell growth-inhibiting effect on the cell line.

Thus, BC-4, a mixture of alpha- and beta-boswellic acids, is deemed as a good agent for the prevention of primary tumor, invasion, and metastases for skin cancer. [39]

6. It may Improve the Skin, prevent Ageing, and may Treat Skin related Disorders

It may Improve the Skin, prevent Ageing, and may Treat Skin related DisordersNot only does frankincense oil improve the tone and quality of the skin, but it also prevents ageing and formation of wrinkles, removes acne blemishes and scars and fades stretch marks.

Confidence: Moderate

In a split-face study carried out on 15 females, the effect of 0.5% boswellic acid cream was evaluated on photo- and age-damaged skin.

The cream was applied once daily for a period of 30 days, on one half of the face. Results showed improvement in roughness and fine lines of the skin on the half where the cream was applied.

They also showed improved skin elasticity and decrement in sebum secretion, indicating a generally effective treatment for skin photo-aging. [40]

In an animal study carried out on hairless mice, the skin of the animal models were treated with 3% frankincense oil.

It was seen that the lipid lamellae, lipid content in the stratum corneum and collagen fibres in the dermis were intact and much less number of mast cells and inflammatory cells were present in the treated animals.

This indicated a reduction in the generation of free radicals and damage of tissue. [41]

In another study, it has been found that AKBA is useful in softening lines and relaxing the skin. [42]

In a clinical study carried out on patients suffering from psoriasis and erythematous eczema, a novel boswellic acid preparation, Bosexil, was tested.

The treatment proved to be efficient in treating scales, itching and erythema related to psoriasis and eczema. [43]

7. It may Prevent many Pathogenic Diseases

Diseases caused by bacteria and fungi can be prevented due to the antimicrobial potency of AKBA.

Confidence: Moderate

An in vitro antimicrobial evaluation carried out on 5 test organisms- Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 12600, Bacillus cereus ATCC 11778, Escherichia coli ATCC 25922 and Proteus vulgaris ATCC 33420 and the yeast Candida albicans ATCC 10231, showed that frankincense oil was an efficient antimicrobial agent requiring very less concentrations to kill the organisms. [44]

Another in vitro study carried out using extract of B. papyrifera showed antimicrobial activity against S. aureus, E. coli and B. subtilis. P. aeruginosa required a high minimum inhibitory concentration of the extract to be killed. [45]

A study carried out to test the effect of frankincense oil on S. mutans, a pathogen that causes many oral health problems, showed that it requires a very low minimum inhibitory concentration (2-4 µg/ml) to be killed, and also prevented the emergence of its mutant strains. [46]

7. It may help in Treating Diabetes Mellitus

Owing to the anti-hyperglycemic effect and hepatoprotective properties, frankincense oil containing boswellic acids are potential therapeutics for diabetes.

Confidence: Moderate

In a trial carried out on 60 type-2 diabetic patients, 300 g of B. serrata extract was given thrice daily, for a period of 6 weeks.

A considerable increase in the blood HDL levels, decrement in cholesterol, LDL, fructosamine, SGPT and SGOT were indicative of efficient treatment of diabetes with Boswellia. [47]

In a study carried out in mice model for type 1 diabetes, intraperitoneal injections of B. serrata extract in the dose of 150 mg/kg were given daily, for 10 days.

Results showed a significant decrease in blood glucose levels, prevented the autoimmune destruction of islet cells and thus proved to be helpful in diabetes mellitus type 1. [48]

In another study carried out in diabetic rats, B. serrata extract proved to be useful in reducing blood glucose levels and preventing diabetes-associated damage of the kidneys and liver.

It was also noted that its use in pregnant rats caused spontaneous abortions in 19.14% of the population. [49]

9. It may Enhance Memory

It may Enhance MemoryConfidence: Moderate

In a study carried out in male wistar rats, learning and memory was impaired due to methimazole-induced hypothyroidism, which could be treated by using 100 mg/kg and 500 mg/kg doses of olibanum.[50]

In a two-study trial carried out on male rats, time- and dose-dependent effects of B. papyrifera extract was tested on their spatial memory.

It was seen that spatial memory improved due to interactions of the constituents of the extract with inflammatory mediators, neurotransmitter signaling cascades or protein kinase pathways in the brain, irrespective of the time period of treatment.

The improvement observed was dose-dependent and enhanced spatial memory retention.[51]

Another study showed that the combined administration of Boswellia serrata and Melissa officinalis in rats improved their memory. [52]

10. It may have Diuretic Activity

Frankincense oil may induce urination.

Confidence: Low

In a study carried out on albino mice, 50 mg/kg dose of B. serrata oleo gum showed 44% diuretic activity as compared to the reference drug, furosemide.

Kaliuretic and natriuretic effects were also seen. No signs of toxicity or lethality were observed even with a dose as high as 3000 mg/kg. [53]

Dosage

Frankincense can be consumed in a variety of ways and so its optimal dosage is not understood yet. It is important to consult a learned practitioner before using them. 

Few pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies carried out for the use of frankincense recommend the following dosages to be most effective when frankincense supplements are taken:

Asthma: 300–400 mg, three times per day

Crohn’s disease: 1,200 mg, three times per day

Osteoarthritis: 200 mg, three times per day

Rheumatoid arthritis: 200–400 mg, three times per day

Ulcerative colitis: 350–400 mg, three times per day

Gingivitis: 100–200 mg, three times per day [54],[55]

There is no scientific evidence of the safety of applying the oil directly to the skin. However, the oil has been used as an additive in creams, toothpaste, gums. [56],[57]

Frankincense oil can be added as 3 drops while drawing a bath, along with 3 drops of hyssop and 6 drops of eucalyptus essential oils, to ease chest congestion and symptoms of cold and flu. [58]

2 drops of frankincense oil can also be added to aromatic bath salt preparations, for detoxifying the body and skin. [59]

1 drop of frankincense oil can be added to a meditation anointing oil blend, along with

2 drops sandalwood essential oil, 1 drop cedarwood essential oil and 1 drop myrrh essential oil. A drop of these mixtures of oils can be applied to the forehead. [60]

Precautions

PrecautionAdverse effects

Frankincense oil may induce gastrointestinal disturbances like nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea, anorexia, and acid reflux. [61],[62],[63],[64]

It may even cause liver toxicity in a very rare case, as studied in mice. [65]

It may cause skin irritation or contact dermatitis, an isolated case observed in a 28-year old woman using a frankincense oil cream for a second-degree burn. [66]

Safety during Pregnancy, Lactation, and Childhood

There is not enough evidence for the safety of the use of frankincense oil in children. A study from Indian literature shows that the oil may induce abortion in pregnant women. [67]

Efficacy of the oil during lactation is unknown.

Interactions

Medicines that are substrates for the liver enzymes CYP1A2, 2C8, 2C9, 2C19, 2D6, and 3A4, can be interacted with, with the use of frankincense oil, as frankincense inhibits the activities of these enzymes.[68]

Medications that depend on P-gp transport such as colchicine, desloratadine, tacrolimus and quinidine may interact with frankincense oil as it inhibits the activity of P-gp. [69]

Warfarin should also not be used with frankincense oil as it might inhibit its metabolism by the liver. [70]

FAQs

Why is Frankincense oil so Expensive?

The demand for frankincense oil is quite high considering its ‘treat-all’ uses. This has obviously contributed to the inflation in its prices, as companies that manufacture and market it have exploited its demand value. Also, because of its high demand, Boswellia trees from which frankincense oil has been extracted, have become endangered or fall into the ‘near threatened’ category according to the IUCN Red List.[71]

Is it safe to ingest Frankincense essential oil?

The LD50 in rats is over 5000mg/kg [72] which correlates to 2000-3000 times the effective dose in humans, and thus its use is non-toxic. [73] However, if ingested, it should only be done with the advice of a professional health specialist and in the recommended doses.

Can you use Frankincense oil for Pain Relief?

While studies on animal models have suggested an analgesic and sedative effect, further research on humans needs to be carried out to establish pain relief as a proven effect of frankincense oil.
In a study carried out on mice, where the pain was induced using acetic acid, treatment with frankincense oil at a dose of 300 mg/kg showed more inhibition of pain as compared to the standard drug, aspirin. [74]

Can Frankincense Essential oil be Applied Directly to the Skin?

There is not sufficient evidence or case reports of any adverse events occurring due to the direct application on the skin. However, it is always recommended that essential oils may be applied to the skin in very minute quantities (2-3 drops) as they are highly concentrated. Application around the eyes should also be avoided. [75]

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