Chamomile (Anthemis nobilis) flower oil
What is it?German chamomile, an annual native to Europe and western Asia, has been used medicinally for centuries. Today it is still one of the most popular herbs, found in teas as well as in many personal care products.
What does it do?German chamomile contains a mixture of compounds that have been recognized for their soothing properties. The essential oil from the chamomile flower in particular promotes soothing and can reduce irritation as well. The variety of German chamomile we use also has less than 0.1% anthecotulid (an allergenic principle) so its irritancy potential is especially low. Our gentle, clean extraction technique (which does not generate chemical waste) draws out the most potent actives in chamomile. We use what’s called a supercritical extraction method, which puts carbon dioxide under special heat and pressure conditions so it behaves like a liquid and can be used to extract ingredients from plants. We collect our CO2 from the surface of volcanoes, which release around 3% of the total CO2 into the atmosphere.
What are the alternatives?Calendula could be a possibility; we also experimented with licorice (glycyrrhizin), but the texture of the finished product was too rubbery. German chamomile overall was the best fit because it has such a strong, clinically proven history of use as a soothing ingredient.
What are the risks?Those with known allergies to the aster family (also known as the sunflower family) may experience allergic reactions with chamomile as well. Tom’s of Maine recognizes that no two people are alike, and even with pure and natural ingredients, some individuals may develop an allergic reaction that is unique to them. As with any product, be sure to discontinue use if you experience discomfort or other indications that the product may not be appropriate for your individual body chemistry.
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