From the bitter orange tree comes not one, not two, but three different oils: one from the fruit peel, one from the leaves, and one from the flowers. But the essential oil which distills from the delicate white flowers of this tree has a unique and alluring history. To take it all in requires a trip – well, in our imaginations, at least – to Egypt, where dōTERRA® sources this oil. It’s the perfect time of year to make a visit, because the time window for harvesting the flower lasts only from mid-March to the end of April. You’re about to become an expert on the origins and uses of Neroli!
How did the blossom of a bitter orange tree come to be known by an exotic name like Neroli? The fascinating story behind the name has to do with a certain Italian princess who simply could not get enough of this oil. In seventeenth century Italy, the princess of a region known as Neroli was a woman named Anne Marie Orsini. She was quite taken by the oil of the orange blossom, which she found so distinctive and pleasant she was said to bathe in it. She was so enraptured by its essence that before diplomatic meetings she made sure to scent her dress gloves with it; this way, her presence would leave a lasting impression. Being a high-profile aristocratic woman of her day, she was a trendsetter for other women who soon followed her example. And that is how this strongly sweet and citrusy floral oil came to be known as Neroli.