Patchouli oil
Patchouli oil


Patchouli oil is the oil taken from the dried leaves, young leaves, and shoots of a plant called patchouli (Pogostemon cablin). It is used to make medicine.

People use patchouli oil as a mosquito repellent, for the common cold, cancer, headache, and other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.

In foods and beverages, patchouli oil is used as a flavoring. In manufacturing, patchouli oil is used as a fragrance in perfumes and cosmetics.
When taken by mouth: Patchouli oil seems to be safe in food amounts. But there isn't enough information to know if it is safe when used in larger medicinal amounts or what the side effects might be.

When applied to the skin: There isn't enough information to know if patchouli oil is safe when applied to the skin or what the side effects might be.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if patchouli oil is safe to use when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.


NatMed Pro rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions
  • Mosquito repellent. Early research shows that applying patchouli oil to the skin can repel mosquitoes for about 2 hours. Applying patchouli oil in combination with turmeric oil and another oil might work for even longer.
  • Stress. Early research suggests that inhaling patchouli oil may reduce stress when used for 2 days. But it's unclear if it is helpful if used for more than 2 days.
  • Bad breath.
  • Cancer.
  • Common cold.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Headache.
  • Nausea.
  • Stomach pain.
  • Vomiting.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of patchouli oil for these uses.

Dosing & administration

The appropriate dose of patchouli oil depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for patchouli oil. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

It is not known if Patchouli Oil interacts with any medicines. Before taking Patchouli Oil, talk with your healthcare professional if you take any medications.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

There are no known interactions with herbs and supplements.

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.


Patchouli oil might help fight certain kinds of bacterial and fungal infections. It might also reduce inflammation. has licensed monographs from TRC Healthcare.
This monograph was last reviewed on 16/11/2023 11:00:00 and last updated on 21/11/2020 02:07:39. Monographs are reviewed and/or updated multiple times per month and at least once per year.
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