Saving Graces of Sage Essential Oil: Uses, Benefits, and Recipes (Updated April 2020)
Sage is a subshrub, which is a shorter, dwarf-sized version of the conventional shrub, albeit with a woodier base. If you’re not familiar with what it looks like, it looks very much like a bush that grows bluish or purplish flowers.
At its core, sage is definitely not your ordinary herb. It is the source of a very powerful and amazing essential oil that may have the answers to a lot of problems relating to your physical and general health.
If you’re in the market for high-quality, 100% pure and all-natural sage essential oil, Aroma Foundry has just what you need.
We did a side-by-side comparison with two of the world's biggest essential oil brands.
Sage by any other name is just as effective. The herb is known by a lot of other names, including its scientific name Salvia officinalis, as well as its other monikers: garden sage, culinary sage, true sage and common sage.
The word “sage” originates from the Latin word “salvere,” which means “to save.” It’s a fitting description, since the herb definitely has characteristics that could save your health.
Sage is native to the southern parts of Europe and has very deep roots that go back thousands of years. In ancient times, sage was held in high regard, with the Ancient Greeks and Romans even going so far as to consider sage to be a sacred herb. The Romans were also the ones who brought sage to Britain when they invaded the isles.
Ancient Egyptian women also used sage in their efforts to improve fertility, and the Greek physician Dioscorides discovered that sage can be used to treat coughs and stop bleeding.
Native Americans and other indigenous cultures also used sage as part of a purification ritual called “smudging,” which cleanses a place and makes it ready for sacred rituals. Even now, people burn sage to “cleanse” their homes of bad energies.
However, sage hasn’t always served a “clean” purpose. In the Medieval Times, thieves used sage in a brew that allowed them to plunder homes stricken by the bubonic plague without falling ill.
In more recent years, sage essential oil gained prominence for its various benefits. Sage oil owes these benefits to its various components, such as camphor, 1,8-cineole, linalool, limonene, and more. However, you can only enjoy the full effects of these components if you use pure sage essential oil.
Aroma Foundry makes sure that we source our essential oils from only the best suppliers. This way, the oil remains pure from the moment it's distilled all the way to the moment you use it.
Uses and Benefits
Back in the day, sage served another vital purpose: food preservation. Since there were no refrigerators, the ancients had to get creative with their preservation techniques. Sage was often used as a preservative for various types of food, including meat.
Of course, it wasn’t just used as a preservative; it enriched the flavor of meat as well. Since sage first originated along the Mediterranean coast, it played an important role in the culinary tradition of the cultures in the area. The Italians, for example, used sage to flavor veal, while the French used it in sausages and cured meats.
The herb itself isn’t the only thing that proved its usefulness over the years. The oil of both the common sage and the clary sage plants was also extracted to be used for its therapeutic benefits.
Primarily known for its medicinal uses, sage essential oil is full of a wide range of health benefits. It possesses properties that make it great for the skin, as well as properties that can reduce inflammation and bring relief when you have a fever. It has antimicrobial, and can also provide relief from problems such as dysentery and other issues related to the digestive system.
Sage has proven throughout history that it is no ordinary herb, and its oil is no ordinary essential oil. Take a look at all it has to offer below.
1. Protecting against microbes
Sage oil contains camphor as well as the chemical camphene, which gives the oil its antimicrobial properties. The presence of camphor and camphene is also the reason why sage is used in a variety of skin products.
In case you get a cut or a wound on any part of your body, applying sage oil can be a good remedy. It can fight bacteria and thus prevent any infections from occurring and spreading from the affected area. This, of course, will also allow your wound to heal better and faster.
Sage oil is also great for managing bacterial infections that occur in other parts of your body, such as the ears, nose, throat, eyes, genitals, urethra, colon and intestines.
Other than bacterial infections, sage oil can also deal with fungal infections. A lot of us have probably faced some fungal skin problem or another, such as fungal dermatitis.
Of course, not all fungal infections are the same, and some are irritating but mostly harmless. Some fungal infections like fungal meningitis, however, can become deadly.
If you find yourself dealing with any type of microbial infection, sage oil might be able to help you get it under control. However, make sure to consult your doctor before using sage oil against an infection.
Which other essential oils can help you fight harmful microbes?
2. Expelling toxins
Toxins can enter our body for various reasons. It could be because of the environment we live in, and it could also be our diet and the foods we consume. The more toxins we have in our body, the greater the likelihood of contracting a disease and illness.
In general, toxins are harmful substances that can come from various sources around us. For example, the compound bisphenol A (BPA) can be found in plastics, which make up a lot of the things around us. Even yoga mats, which may be emblematic of good health, contain a toxin called azodicarbonamide.
Fortunately, sage oil possesses depurative properties. This means that sage oil has the ability to help expel toxins from your body.
We mostly take toxins out of our bodies through defecation or urination, and sage oil can help speed that process up. Ridding your body of toxins is extremely beneficial and will help you maintain to maintain better physical health.
3. Treating coughs and colds
We all catch a cold or a bad cough once in a while. What happens in such cases is that we get sputum stuck in our respiratory tract as a consequence of infection.
This is where expectorants can come in and help. Sage oil has expectorant properties and can therefore induce the expulsion of sputum through the air passages. Thus, if you’re suffering from a stuffy nose and you’re having trouble concentrating because your head feels so congested, sage oil can be your go-to remedy.
Sage oil will not only provide you relief from cough and colds, it can get rid of all the congestion in your respiratory tract that occurs as a result of catching a cold. The best part of all this, of course, is that you don’t have to depend on any over-the-counter medicine. You can use a great natural alternative in sage oil.
4. Providing antioxidants
Your body, as well as everyone else’s, has free radicals. Healthy people have balanced free radical and antioxidant levels, but problems can arise once this balance is thrown off.
When the body is no longer able to regulate free radicals, it becomes susceptible to diseases. Once this happens, antioxidants need to come from an external source.
Antioxidants work to protect the body from the free radicals and can even decrease the likelihood of heart diseases or even cancer. Sage essential oil in particular is an excellent natural antioxidant. It has the ability to fight against free radicals in the body, and can not only stave off disease but improve your skin as well.
It can also function as a natural anti-aging agent. Applying the oil can not only help you get rid of skin-related problems, it also has the ability to reduce the early onset of various symptoms of aging, such as wrinkles, sagging muscles or skin, weaker hearing and sight, brain function issues, memory problems, and nervous system disorders.
We may not have found the fountain of youth, but this is the closest you could get to maintaining your youthfulness from the inside and through to the outside.
Which other essential oils can have antioxidant effects?
5. Reducing inflammation
When inflammation occurs, it means that the body is fighting to remove any harmful stimulants, such as pathogens, irritants, or any damaged cells. Inflammation is the natural response of the body when it is currently dealing with something harmful.
While inflammation usually goes down after a particular period of time, chronic inflammation can lead to a wide range of issues, including asthma, ulcers, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease and much more. These problems are manageable, but they will definitely affect the way you live your life on a day-to-day basis.
If you’re dealing with inflammation, just a couple of drops of sage oil might be a good remedy. Sage oil possesses anti-inflammatory properties that allow it to reduce inflammations caused by fever, toxic material in the bloodstream, the consumption of spicy food, or even intoxicants like alcohol or narcotics. Sage can also deal with various types of inflammations that may occur on the skin as well as in the digestive system.
6. Aiding digestion
The oil also has choleretic properties, which means that it can help stimulate the release of bile. By doing so, the oil is able to help keep the stomach and digestive system healthy while preventing any inflammations.
Bile is a vital element in the digestion process. It contains the bile acids that ensure smoother digestion and allow the absorption of fats into the small intestine. Aside from that, it also neutralizes any acidity in the stomach and in the blood.
This helps in relieving problems like hyperacidity, which could then lead to various other problems such as ulcers, or even skin related diseases that occur due to increased acid levels in the blood stream.
Because sage oil has choleretic properties, it is therefore an excellent natural digestive. The oil induces the production of bile, which in turn helps the body digest the food better, which can then help with indigestion. This also stops any microbial growth from occurring in the digestive system, which means that your stomach and intestines can stay in peak health.
Which other essential oils can help you improve digestion?
7. Improving menstrual health
Sage has emmenagogue properties. “Emmenagogue” may be a strange word, but it basically just refers to anything that has the ability to induce or improve menstrual flow. Sage essential oil has emmenagogue properties, which means that the use of sage oil can lead to a better menstrual cycle.
Ovulation and menstruation are a regular part of any lady's life, and a healthy menstrual cycle is vital to the well-being of a woman. However, menstruation isn’t always smooth sailing, and many women can encounter a range of problems such as dysmenorrhea, cramps, and other symptoms. Sage essential oil has emmenagogue properties which allow it to release hormones such as estrogen, which can in turn allow problem-free menstruation.
Along with healthy menstrual cycles, sage oil can also relieve other problems typically associated with menstruation. These problems include nausea, weakness, fatigue, headaches, mood swings, or depression.
For a lot of women, periods aren’t really a good experience -- unfortunately, it has to come every month. Fortunately, however, sage oil can make at least some things easier.
There is also evidence that sage oil can help manage the symptoms of menopause.
8. Relieving constipation
Constipation is painful, and it is a problem that most of us, if not all of us, have gone through at least once in our lives. It can occur for a variety of reasons, which may include a change in your dietary habits, eating disorders, irritable bowel syndrome, a lack of fiber in your diet, stress, and many more. Women going through a pregnancy or even just their menstruation may experience constipation as well.
Usually, when we are experiencing things such as constipation, we'd like to get back to our body’s regular programming as soon as possible. In the case of constipation, laxatives may be one way to go.
Sage essential oil is an awesome natural laxative. The oil stimulates the intestines and allows the release of certain fluids in the body that promote excretion. This can then relieve constipation, even without the help of over-the-counter laxatives, which can actually become ineffective over time.
If you switch to a natural alternative like sage oil, you may have an easier time dealing with constipation and other digestive issues in the future.
9. Other Uses
It's clear at this point that sage oil can be extremely useful in a variety of situations, and can also bring many benefits to your health and everyday life. Its properties help it fight against infections and it is especially helpful when it comes to problems relating to the digestive system. However, sage oil has a lot of other uses that weren’t mentioned above.
- It can help you manage various skin conditions such as dermatitis, herpes, and psoriasis.
- It can help relieve respiratory issues such as sinusitis, asthma, and bronchitis, as well as reduce the accumulation of phlegm.
- It can provide relief from muscular pain, body pain, or pain in the spine due to lumbago or sciatica.
- It can provide relief from coordination issues such as cerebral palsy, and it can also offer relief from muscle spasms.
- It can help stimulate all the internal systems in your body including your nervous system, respiratory system, digestive system, your liver, and your brain.
- It blends well with rosemary essential oil, bergamot essential oil, grapefruit essential oil, tea tree essential oil, lemon essential oil, and spearmint essential oil.
Sage essential oil can help you manage many kinds of ailments. It definitely has a lot of uses, and it is something that can benefit you in a lot of ways in your everyday life. Be it a remedy for skin problems, or problems in your digestive or respiratory system, sage oil has much to offer.
Even though sage oil has has a lot of benefits, however, it’s not perfect. Just like any other oil or medicine, there are precautions you must take if you're planning to use and integrate the natural benefits of sage oil in your day-to-day life.
While sage oil is typically considered to be safe to use, it can become toxic in high doses. It’s best to avoid ingesting it, though sage leaves are safe to eat with food.
It should also be avoided by pregnant women, since the oil contains camphor and camphene. These two components can be toxic and thus risky to pregnant women.
Sage also oil stimulates the nervous system, which means that it should not be used by someone who is epileptic or has a history of epileptic attacks. If your drink alcohol, you should also avoid using sage oil since it can heighten intoxication.
Make sure to consult with a medical professional before using sage oil in your everyday life.
Sage oil is certainly useful and beneficial in a variety of ways, but it won’t do much if you’re not really sure how to use it. Whether you’re a first-time sage oil user or someone who knows their way around essential oils, you may benefit from a few recipes that you can tweak and adjust to fit your own preferences. These recipes can also bring the best out of sage oil and allow you to put it to good use.
1. Sage hair thickener
While sage oil has a lot of medicinal uses, it can actually also function as an alternative to over-the-counter beauty products. If you mix it with other essential oils, you can come up with a great and all-natural solution that can help you make your hair thicker without spending on extensions or products with potentially harmful chemicals.
Here is a useful recipe that you can use to make your own hair thickener. These are the things you’ll need:
- 30 drops of sage essential oil
- 30 drops of an essential oil of your choice (rosemary essential oil is a good option)
- 30 drops of another essential oil of your choice
- 1½ ounces jojoba oil
- 1½ ounces grapeseed oil
First pour the jojoba oil and grapeseed oil into a glass cosmetic-style jar. These oils will serve as the carrier oils for the essential oils in the recipe. Add the essential oils into the mixture and shake the jar until all the oils have been thoroughly mixed together.
Use the mixture at least three times a week, but no more than once per day. Massage a generous amount into your scalp; it doesn’t matter if your hair is wet or dry. Wait at least 20 minutes before rinsing the mixture off, but you can also leave it on overnight.
2. Sage massage oil
Sage oil is also a great ingredient in massage oils. Since it can work very well with other essential oils, you can partner sage oil up with two or three other essential oils to create a massage oil that can relax you at the end of a long day.
As you begin to use more essential oils more often, you’ll be able to get a better idea of which ones go together the best. However, here is a recipe to help you start off:
- 2 ounces of a carrier oil
- 5 drops of sage essential oil
- 5 drops of rosemary essential oil
- 15 drops of lemongrass essential oil
It may be best to use jojoba oil or sweet almond oil as your carrier oil. Jojoba oil is unlikely to irritate your skin, and sweet almond oil can be very nourishing.
Place all the ingredients in a push pump glass bottle, then shake the bottle to combine all the oils. You will only need a teaspoon or two of the final product as a massage oil, so this mixture will likely last a few massage sessions.
The great thing about this recipe is that you can experiment with it and find a combination of oils that you like best.
3. Sage aromatherapy spray
Sage is very aromatic, and its oil definitely carries that distinction as well. Thus, sage essential oil is a great addition to aromatherapy blends.
If you’re the type who’s always busy and on the go, finding the time for some aromatherapy may be difficult. Fortunately, an aromatherapy spray can help you relax and center yourself without the hassle of breaking out your diffuser or other aromatherapy paraphernalia.
Here are the things you’ll need:
- 3.5 ounces filtered or distilled water
- 3 tbsp witch hazel (you can also use vodka or grain alcohol)
- 3 drops sage essential oil
- 3 drops rosemary essential oil
- 10 drops patchouli essential oil
You may have noticed that this is basically the adapted version of the sage massage oil recipe. This is because the combination of sage, rosemary, and patchouli can adapt well from a massage oil to an aromatherapy spray. Of course, you can also pick a different combination of essential oils for this recipe.
However, you’ll still need to use the water and the witch hazel, though you can swap the witch hazel for vodka or grain alcohol if those ingredients are easier to obtain.
Put all these ingredients in a glass spray bottle, then shake the bottle to combine all the liquids. Make sure to let the mixture sit for at least 24 hours before you use it to give the aromas enough time to really set in.
Check out a variety of essential oils you can use in these recipes.
Sage has had thousands of years to prove its abilities, and the fact that it is still in use today is a testament to how beneficial it truly is. The plant can be used in smudge sticks that you can burn to “cleanse” and “purify” your home of bad vibes, though of course this doesn’t have much empirical evidence. However, sage has many other uses that extend beyond the realm of the spiritual, right into the realm of practical and medicinal purposes.
The Ancient Greeks and Romans held sage in high regard, and so does Aroma Foundry. We make sure that our sage essential oil is of the highest quality, because sage -- and our customers -- deserve the best treatment.
- V. Lobo-A. Patil-A. Phatak-N. Chandra - https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3249911/
- What Are Toxins? Chris Weller - https://www.medicaldaily.com/what-are-toxins-322528
- Sage Benefits & Information (salvia Officinalis) https://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-sage.html
- The Many Benefits Of Sage, the 'savior' Herb https://articles.mercola.com/herbs-spices/sage.aspx
- “17 Surprising Benefits Of Sage Essential Oil" Organic Facts, https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/essential-oils/sage-essential-oil.html.
- Sage Essential Oil & Detox Body Oil Ash -Jessica -Shannon -Susan Palmieri-Matt -Emily S. - http://homegrownandhealthy.com/know-your-ingredients-sage-essential-oil/
- How To Choose Carrier Oils https://www.quinessence.com/blog/choose-carrier-oils
- Make Your Own Aromatherapy Sprays https://www.dreamingearth.com/blog/make-your-own-aromatherapy-spritzers/