Sandalwood oil is an excellent cleansing, astringent addition to massage and facial oils, bath oils, aftershaves, lotions and creams. It's suitable for all skin types and is especially useful for chapped, dry, sensitive or inflamed skin. Sandalwood oil is relaxing, soothing, cooling, centering and sensual. It promotes restful sleep and helps to ease an anxious mind. It's considered an aid in meditation and prayer--a common practice is placing a drop of sandalwood oil on the third eye. It's grounding in times of emotional distraction and helps bring peace and acceptance in times of loss.
An excellent fixative when combined with other oils, sandalwood is also valued for its own sweet, warm, rich balsamic aroma. It blends especially well with floral or other oils dominated by their top or middle notes, but works with almost any oil--providing or enhancing the base note and lending its fixative ability. It is suited for both feminine and masculine formulas.
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Sandalwood is a very safe, non-irritating oil. Like all essential oils, however, it should be diluted before applying to the skin. It has been reported to occasionally cause irritation when applied undiluted to the skin.
Due to its high price and scarcity, sandalwood oil is often adulterated. The most common adulterants are the essential oils of other species of sandalwood, copaiba oil, Atlas cedar fractions and amyris oil. Another type of adulteration that occurs is called "stretching," where odorless solvents are added to sandalwood oil in order to increase its quantity.
Sandalwood oil must be aged at least six months in order to fully develop its sweet, woody, sensual aroma. After that its fragrance continues to improve slowly with age, so sandalwood can be stored indefinitely in a dark, airtight glass container.