Vetiver: Fragrant, Prevents Scarring & Anti-inflammatory - The Thai King's Gift
Vetiver oil, also known as Khus oil, is a type of essential oil that is extracted from the roots of the vetiver grass (Vetiveria zizanioides). The dark, thick oil is particularly known for its warm, earthy, and grounding scent, vaguely reminiscent of sandalwood, which is why it is highly prized for use in high-end perfumes and aromatherapy. In Thai, we call it หญ้าแฝก (Yaa Faek).
Vetiver oil has been traditionally used in Thailand for medicinal purposes and as a natural remedy. The King's Royal Project in Thailand introduced the cultivation of Vetiver grass in Northern Thailand, in 1993 as a water-saving crop and soil conservation measure. The grass itself grows up to around 1 meter tall and is unremarkable to look at, but its complex root and tuber system spread 2-3 meters underground and literally can stop mountains from collapsing during the monsoonal rains. Rows of vetiver planted amongst crops help retain soil moisture during the long monsoonal dry season, and help prevent flooding in the wet. The plant is also used to make handcrafted products such as mats, baskets and roofing material as well as the very valuable essential oil.
In addition to its heady, earthy scent, Vetiver oil has been found to have remarkable properties that make it beneficial for the skin. Studies have shown that Vetiver oil has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-scarring properties. In aromatherapy, Vetiver Essential Oil is colloquially called the Oil of Tranquility.
Inflammation and oxidative stress can cause the skin to appear dull, and contribute to the development of acne, eczema and other skin conditions. Vetiver oil's anti-inflammatory properties can help to soothe irritated skin and reduce the appearance of redness and inflammation.
Antioxidant properties in Vetiver oil help to protect the skin from the damaging effects of free radicals, which can lead to premature aging and wrinkles. Vetiver oil also has the ability to improve the healing process of the skin, making it useful to reduce scarring and improve the overall appearance of the skin.
While there's some limited studies on the specific benefits of Vetiver oil on skin, but overall it is considered to be safe when used in proper dilution, it can be applied topically to the skin, and it can also be added to lotions, creams, and other skincare products.
In conclusion, Vetiver oil is a natural and effective essential oil that can be used to improve the overall health and appearance of the skin. With its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-scarring properties, it may help to soothe irritated skin, reduce the appearance of redness and inflammation, protect the skin from the damaging effects of free radicals, improve healing process of the skin, and reduce scarring. Vetiver oil cultivation also contributes to the King's Royal Project by providing sustainable livelihoods for indigenous hill tribes, and contributing to water conservation and the reduction of soil erosion.