Sandalwood - cosmetics

Sandalwood oil is a beneficial skin treatment and used in a range of skin and hair care products. The oil is widely valued in perfumery in India and Europe.

Sandalwood oil

A photograph of sandalwood oil housed in Kew's Economic Botany Collection.
Sandalwood oil is used in perfumes, skin and hair preparations.
Good quality sandal oil can attract a high price. As a cosmetic it has moisturising, astringent, antiseptic, balancing and stimulating properties. It frequently features in products for the skin. Recommended for dry and aging skin, it can be blended with other plant-derived extracts in hair oils and body lotions.

The oil is used in perfumery, both in India and Europe. It has a characteristic sweet, woody odour which is widely used in the fragrance industry. It has excellent blending properties and the presence of a large proportion of high-boiling constituents in the oil also makes it valuable as a fixative for other fragrances. In India, where it is produced, it is used in this manner for the manufacture of traditional attars such as rose attar.