Essential Oil Profile: Carrot Seed

by Jeffrey S. Hoard


Common Name: Carrot 

Latin Binomial:Daucus carota

Family: Apiaceae (Umbelliferae)

Other Common Names: Queen Anne’s Lace, Wild Carrot, Bird’s Nest

Part Used: Seed

Production Method:The oil is steam distilled from the dried seed. Seeds may or may not be crushed before distillation.

Countries of Origin: France, Egypt, Hungary, India, The Netherlands,

Typical Constituents: α-pinene (~13%), β-pinene (~18%), carotol (~18%), ducol, limonene, β-bisabolene, β-elemene, cis-β-bergamotene, γ-decalactone, β-farnesene, geraniol, geranyl acetate (~10%), caryophyllene, caryophyllene oxide, methyl eugenol, nerolidol, eugenol, trans-asarone, vanillin, asorone, α-terpineol, terpinen-4-ol, γ-decanolactone, coumarin and β-selinene.

Description of Oil: Generally, carrot seed yields a golden yellow or amber-colored to pale, orange-brown oil with a woody, root-like, earthy odor. The initial notes are sweet and fresh with a tenacious and lasting heavy, earthy, fatty, slightly spicy undertone. The smell is reminiscent of that associated with the edible orange root.

Description of Plant: A bristly-stemmed annual or biennial plant, which grows to 2 – 4 feet high. The leaves are finely dissected and the flowers appear in a flat cluster with 1 small deep purple floret at the center.

History, Folklore and Myth: The carrot is said to have originated in Afganistan, was known to the Greeks and Romans and has now spread throughout Europe. The more familiar, edible, orange root was developed by the Dutch in the seventeenth century. The wild flower, Queen Anne’s Lace was brought to the New World by English setters.

In France, in the sixteenth century, carrots were prescribed for their carminative (relieves and promotes the expulsion of flatus or gas from the gastro-intestinal tract), stomachic (strengthens, stimulates, or tones the stomach) and hepatic (stimulates and aids function of liver & gallbladder) properties.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine it is used to treat dysentery and to expel worms.

Properties and Uses: Carrot seed oil is diuretic (Increases the secretion and flow of urine) and hepatic, acts as a blood, liver and kidney cleanser and is useful for jaundice and hepatitis.

It has relaxing qualities and is used in treatment of premenstrual tension.

It’s depurative (cleans or purifies the blood by promoting eliminative functions) qualities make it useful as well for the treatment of arthritis and rheumatism.

It has a positive action on the skin, being used as a natural tanning agent and skin toner to protect aging and wrinkled skin. It is also helpful for skin problems, including eczema, psoriasis, rashes, etc.

Precautions and Contraindications: Carrot oil tested non-toxic at low levels. It should be avoided when pregnant because it can promote menstruation.

Other Interesting Information: Oil is also obtained, by solvent extraction, from the red fleshy root of the common edible carrot. It has a high concentration of carotenes. Pilots, during World War II, were issued carrots on a regular basis to enhance their night vision. The carrot plant contains substantial amounts of Vitamins A, B1, B2 and C.





Arctander, Steffen. Perfume and Flavor Materials of Natural Origin. Carol Stream, Illinois: Allured Publishing Corporation. 1994.

Battaglia, Salvatore. The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. Virginia, Queensland, Australia: The Perfect Potion. 1995.

Damian, Peter & Kate, Aromatherapy, Scent & Psyche. Rochester, Vermont. Healing Arts Press. 1995.

Foster, Steven and James A. Duke. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Boston. Houighton Mifflin. 1990.

Lawless, Julia. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils. Shaftesbury, Dorset. Element Books. 1995.

Ryman, Daniele. Aromatherapy, The Complete Guide to Plant and Flower Essences for Health and Beauty. Bantam Books. 1991.


Carrot Oil Products at Cheryl's Herbs:

Carrot Seed Essential Oil

Note from Cheryl about our Carrot Seed Essential Oil: We now have a new Carrot Seed Oil. It smells like no other Carrot Oil I have smelled in the past. Our producer says, "This is the best Carrot Seed Oil in the world. In the first place, the starting material is superior to the typical carrot seed that would come from India. Secondly, the oil is distilled in stainless steel under reduced pressure so the final product is higher in alcohols and lower in sequiterpenes and monoterpenes and there is also less degradation under these milder conditions. A harsh and quick steam distillation is what typically gives Carrot Seed Oil that "dirty" odor. Analytically the oil is also very good from a chemical standpoint with high caratol, geraniol, geranyl acetate as well as other nice esters which give it its fruitiness."

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