Also known as rock rose, cistus essential oil is distilled from the sticky, resinous leaves and has been used in traditional and folk medicine for centuries. It has a honey-like a scent that has been used to uplift the mood and calm nerves. This is only one of the many proven benefits and uses of cistus essential oil.

Looking for the Best Cistus Essential Oils?

Are Cistus Oil and Labdanum the Same?

Though they come from the same plant, the rock rose, their biggest difference lies in the method of extraction. Different methods often lead to larger concentrations of certain compounds or changes how the final product is used. One common method is steam distillation, which is how cistus essential oil is made. The stems and leaves are boiled, and the oily resin is left behind as cistus essential oil.

Another common method is generally reserved for oils that are used almost exclusively in the making of perfumes. Labdanum is made by using a solvent to withdraw the essence from the plant. These chemicals often make the oil unsuitable for aromatherapy but are safe when added to chemical formulas.

6 Major Benefits and Uses of Cistus Essential Oil

1. Disinfectant

Keeping our homes, businesses, and personal items clean is a top priority in a world where people are unknowing carriers of communicable diseases. This may be something as simple as the common cold or serious conditions such as food poisoning. Widespread use of chemical cleansers can even lead to resistant bacteria evolving. Oils like cistus essential oil have been shown to kill the most common bacteria and molds that cause illness such as listeria or salmonella. Used in combination with other oils like lemon or tea tree can help keep the surfaces of your home germ-free. (1)

2. Natural Pain Killer

Modern pain killers are generally mild enough to help control everyday pain, whether from bruises, headaches or even just muscle strain, they come with their own set of side effects and aren’t usually recommended for long term use. Natural pain relief remedies may be used more frequently as well, making them an excellent supplement to over the counter medications. Cistus oil has been shown to work on pain by decreasing inflammation and also blocks the chemicals that send pain signals to the brain. (2)

Add a few drops of cistus oil to a carrier oil and apply to the places on your body where it is needed most. It may also help prevent infections in minor cuts and scrapes as well as easing inflammation and pain.

3. Herbicide

Though we often think of insects as pests, certain plants can also be invasive pests in your lawn and garden. Many chemicals that are used to control invasive plants and weeds are made with chemicals that can be extremely dangerous to humans and animals. Cistus essential oil has been shown to prevent the seeds of certain plants from ever germinating. This will lead to the eventual death of the invasive population as they are no longer able to reproduce. This may be useful for plants that may not respond to other human-made chemicals as well. (3)

Mix cistus oil with water or vinegar and apply to the problem plants and the ground beneath to prevent the germination of further seeds.

4. Ease Anxiety

Anxiety is a natural state of stress, usually when we worry or feel like we are rushed in our everyday lives. For many people, this happens rarely and is easily resolved. Many other people may find it hard to recover from an anxious state and have found that aromatherapy can affect the levels of anxiety. Cistus essential oil is comprised of bornyl acetate and has been found to have a depressant effect on the mind, allowing for the body to stop producing hormones that escalate stress. This may allow people to work through anxiety naturally. (4)

Create a roll-on using cistus oil and lavender in a carrier oil that can be carried with you throughout the day. Apply to your wrists or neck for easy access to a scent which fosters a relaxing attitude.

5. Treat Mite Infections

Scabies mites are microscopic creatures that can live on human skin for months. They bite and burrow into the epidermis to lay their eggs. This leads to a red, itchy rash that can last for weeks. It is also highly contagious and passes from one person to another through skin contact and clothing that has come into contact with the infected skin. Terpinen-4-ol, a constituent of cistus oil, has been shown to prevent the egg-laying ability of the mite and may help clear up an infection when used in conjunction with medical treatments. Anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties can also ease the pain of the infected site and prevent any secondary infections from the skin that has been itched raw. (5)

6. Lower Blood Pressure

Any number of factors can contribute to high blood pressure. It may be purely environmental, such as working in a high-stress profession or a medical condition such as anxiety. Hypertension is one of the many symptoms of heart disease, and controlling your blood pressure can go a long way to preventing other health issues. Cistus essential oil has been shown to not only reduce mental anxiety but also to help lower your blood pressure by relaxing the vascular walls and allowing for an easier flow of blood throughout your body. (6)

Diffuse this oil throughout your house to lower anxiety, promote a sense of peace and calm, and positively affect your blood pressure as well.

What Is the Best Cistus Essential Oil?

Whenever you are looking for essential oils that are appropriate for the use you are planning, you certainly want to find one of quality. With this oil, you also want to make sure that it is pure cistus oil and free from any solvents that may not be safe for certain uses. We’ve made a list of the best cistus essential oils for you to choose from.

Edens Garden Cistus Essential Oil

This product is imported from Spain and tested to be 100% authentic oil with not adulteration. You can use it with your children ages 2 and up with a 1% dilution rate. It will help bring the anxiety-relieving benefits to your entire family as you diffuse daily.

Best for: Diffusing Throughout Your Home


Mountain Rose Herbs Organic Cistus Essential Oil

This oil is imported from locally sourced farms and has been certified organic. This means that there will be no man-made chemical adulteration because of the way in which it was grown. With this in mind, it would be best for making your own roll-on mixes to help reduce anxiety.

Best for: Roll-Ons Mixes for Daily Application


Plantlife Cistus Ladanifer Essential Oil

Made from the resinous leaves and stems of the cistus ladanifer, this oil has properties that could be used to help keep your skin as healthy as possible. It could easily be added to your current moisturizer to help reduce inflammation and reduce the presence of germs on the skin.

Best for: Skin Health


My Favorite Use Of Cistus Essential Oil

I am no stranger to the biting pests of the world. Once spring hits, so does grilling season. That means spending every moment it isn’t raining outside on the patio. This means it is open season for anything that bites or stings. We manage the pest population with other oils, but sometimes we come across a particular pest that gets past the usual prevention.

I’d never heard of scabies mites. I knew that mites were microscopic and tended to live in bedding, but never any that left marks and welts like these did.

It started out as a rash that looked a lot like chigger bites. Anyone from the south is well acquainted with chigger bites, and you’ll find a steady supply of nail polish in any household to combat their bites. These bites turned out to be different.

The itching was worse than any bite I’d ever had. The bumps were red and inflamed, making it nearly impossible to ignore the drive to itch myself raw. The doctor confirmed that it was a tiny little bug called a scabies mite. The medication was prescribed, but I needed relief soon than that pill could work itself through my body.

Once I read about cistus essential oil, along with tea tree, I immediately prepared a roll-on that I could apply several times a day to all the bites. The relief was almost immediate. The swelling and redness went away, and the itching was dialed back to a manageable level. Then the medication kicked in to kill off the rest of the infection, leaving me infection-free.

Recommended Cistus Oil-Based Products

1. Compagnie de Provence Body Balm Cistus Cardamom

Many lotions promise to hydrate your skin but often contain chemicals that can do damage instead, leading to the need for repeated application. This oil promises to be free of those unnatural substances and instead uses oils like cistus and cardamom to help moisturize without over-drying. Cistus oil should also help keep it germ-free as well and ease any areas of inflammation.


2. Healtop Soft Lips 100% Natural Moisturizing Therapy Lip Balm

Healtop Soft Lips 100% Natural Moisturizing Therapy Lip Balm 0.5 FL OZ Shea Butter, Palm Oil, Bees...
  • Soft lips - your personal lip balm
  • All-natural ingredients
  • Combines Shea butter, Palm oil, Bees wax, Essential oils: Orange,...

This lip balm offers natural ingredients to help protect and moisturize your lips. Shea butter will be absorbed by the skin while beeswax seals in the moisture. Oils like cistus and orange can help keep skin healthy by reducing any inflammation that may be occurring or even help kill any germs that you may come in contact with while eating or drinking.


Caution of Cistus Essential Oil

  • Always choose quality Cistus essential oil from reputable suppliers.
  • Cistus oil may cause an unsafe drop in blood pressure if you are currently taking medication for hypertension.
  • Be sure that you choose an oil labeled cistus. Though it is related to labdanum, labdanum is an absolute that may contain chemicals unsafe for topical application or aromatherapy.
  • Cistus oil may have a sedative effect that can magnify the effect of sedatives or other mood-altering medications.
  • Always dilute oil and test on a patch of skin before applying topically.


I hope you enjoyed learning about the benefits of this uncommon oil. Like many other oils, cistus is useful in keeping your house and body healthy, especially when used in conjunction with modern medicine. Please be sure to share this information with anyone who may be curious about how they can use cistus essential oil in their everyday lives.