Feb 21, 2023 3:01:35 PM | American college of healthcare sciences Quality of Essential Oils: I say Lavender, You Say Lavandin...Is it the same?

In clinical aromatherapy, it is very important to purchase oils by the Latin name. Become a certified aromatherapy at ACHS.edu to learn more.

For this reason, it is very important to identify the oil specifically by Latin name as L. intermedia has its own therapeutic uses and must not be interchanged with L. angustifolia. Camphor is a ketone known to have a stimulating effect. In addition, 1,8 cineole (eucalyptol) also has a stimulating effect. Since lavender’s reputation is primarily that of a sedative, the therapeutic results can be disappointing if the two lavender essential oils are used interchangeably.





Lavandula angustifolia  (otherwise known as Lavandula officinalis)

Lavandula intermedia Hybrid: L. latifolia x L. angustifolia


Linalool (25-28%), linalyl acetate (25-45%), 1,8 cineole (0%), and camphor (0%))

Linalyl acetate (28-38%), 1,8 cineole (6-20%), and camphor (7-40%)

Oil Characteristics (color and scent)

Colorless to pale yellow; sweet, floral herbaceous

Colorless to pale yellow, yellow-green; similar but with camphor tones and rose-like note due to “rhodinol”

Therapeutic Action

More sedating

Less sedating

Chemotypes that provide a specific constituent profile are also important for clinical aromatherapy. The two primary basil chemotypes commercially distributed provide a great example: Ocimum basilicum ct. methyl chavicol and Ocimum basilicum ct. linalool. The latter is the preferred chemotype to use when less methyl chavicol (also known as estragole) (which is potentially a toxic constituent) is preferred. Although the methyl chavicol chemotype is not extremely toxic and hazardous, clinical aromatherapists are cautioned to use it with care because of the increased risk of liver damage due to the glutathione depletion. It is contraindicated for clinical aromatherapy use if there is any estrogen-dependent cancer. (Tisserand, et al., 1996)


Dorene Petersen, ACHS Founding President

Written By: Dorene Petersen, ACHS Founding President

Dorene is the Founding President of the American College of Healthcare Sciences (ACHS). She has over 45 years of clinical teaching and lecturing experience in aromatherapy and other holistic health subjects. She has presented papers on essential oils and clinical aromatherapy at the International Federation of Essential Oils and Aroma Trades Annual Conference (IFEAT) in California, USA; the Aroma Environment Association of Japan (AEAJ) in Tokyo, Japan; the Asian Aroma Ingredients Congress (AAIC) and Expo in Bali, Indonesia; the International Center of Advanced Aromatherapy (ICAA) at the WonGwang Digital University in Seoul, Korea; as well as the AAIC Expo in Kunming, Yunnan, China. Dorene is a founding member of the Aromatherapy Registration Council (ARC) and served as its chair until 2023. Dorene is also involved in the distance education community and has served as a volunteer, committee member, and standards evaluator for the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC). Dorene is a travel junkie, and has led ACHS Study Abroad programs to India, Indonesia, Greece, and Hawaii!