“Then took Mary a pound of ointment of Spikenard,
very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus”
My personal relationship with Spikenard: Being a “type A” personality, I’ve loved Spikenard from the first sniff. Spikenard has the same effect on my nervous system as Vetiver. It’s deeply calming and helps bring me back to center when I begin overthinking projects and moving too quickly from one thing to another. When I inhale this earthy oil, I swear I can feel it right down to my root chakra.
Note: Base (To learn more about aromatic notes, this blog post explains them)
Geographical source: India, Nepal
Plant Part: Roots
Extraction Method: Steam Distilled
Oil Characteristics: Spikenard is Earthy, heavy, sweet and musty
Chemical Families: Sesquiterpenes, Sesquiterpenols. (To learn more about Chemical Families, listen to one of my most popular podcasts. Aromatic Wisdom Podcast Episode 008.)
Therapeutic Properties: (Here’s a glossary of therapeutic terms that will help you understand the terminology.)
- Grounding, help bring you back to earth
- Deeply calming to the central nervous system
- Great to promote sleep
- Helps inhibit the growth of fungus
Subtle Properties: (emotional and energetic): Spikenard resonates with the base chakra. It’s a beautiful essential oil when you want to encourage forgiveness and return to emotional balance. It relaxes the mind so help slow down excessive thinking.
Applications: (Here are some guidelines for making your own essential oil blends in a safe dilution.)
- Add a drop of Spikenard and a drop of Ylang Ylang to any blend for anxiety and insomnia.
- Helpful in antifungal blends (especially when mixed with lemongrass) as it has some antifungal activity of its own.
- It’s been used successfully to deal with tachycardia.
- A great bug repellant
Liz’s Suggested Recipe:
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
3 drops Spikenard
1 drops Neroli
1 drop Lavender essential oil
1 oz organic unscented lotion
Directions: Mix the essential oils into a 1-ounce jar of unscented lotion, stir and apply to the chest, shoulders, and neck while repeating this affirmation: I enjoy a deep, refreshing sleep every night.
Safety Information: Non-toxic, non-irritating.
Where to Buy: You can find exceptional essential oils at NaturesGift.com. I use all their products in my personal blends and in my classroom because of the high quality and fabulous customer service.
If you’d like a 10% discount when you order from NaturesGift.com just for being an Aromatic Wisdom Blog reader, send your name and email and get the discount code!
1. Battaglia S. The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. 2nd edition, The International Centre of Holistic Aromatherapy, Australia, 2003 2.
2. Mojay G. Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit, Henry Holt and Company Inc., England, 1996 3.
3. Worwood, Valerie Ann, Aromatherapy for the Soul, New World Library, 1999
Do you have a place to keep all your blend recipes? If not, consider My Book of Blends.
I created it for myself and realized so many other aromatherapists could use such a book.
With over 150 pages to name, rate, make detailed notes, list out the number of drops used and
carrier oils used in your recipes, this book is the perfect place to keep them
safe all in one, easy to use space.
Thanks for the sleep blend recipe! I used it and it smelled delightful, and I had a great night’s sleep 🙂
Hurray! I love when people share how essential oils have helped them with sleep. Thanks so much for writing Michelle! Liz
Thank Liz. Can I replace unscented lotion by oil? Best regards, Marija
Hi Marija, Great question! Yes, you absolutely can replace unscented lotion with unscented oil! Take care, Liz
You mentioned it helping with forgiveness… we sorta accidently made a blend that started as a “bespoke” hospice blend we make… lots of frankincense, a touch of rose. We were asked to make “Mary’s Oil” for a church women’s retreat… WHAT on earth is Mary’s Oil? we took our “hospice rose’ blend and added a whisper of spikenard. The church women were happy…. but what we found later is that this blend is about forgiveness, both of self and of others. Who knew? That was not our intent, but a friend working with women in a halfway house swears that is the effect. These oils can bring healing on so many levels… physical, mental, spiritual. thank for this lovely article. (But you didn’t warn people that the aroma is… well, it may take getting used to, and definitely needs blending! (my personal opinion, of course!)
Hi Marge! Your “bespoke” hospice blend story is so moving! The oils always lead us, don’t they? And, yes, thank you for the advice about the aroma. I love it so it’s not an issue for me, but it’s definitely “deeply earthy” shall we say? Thanks for sharing your rich aromatic guidance with us! Liz xo