Benefits and Uses of the Black Frankincense

The Rare Black Frankincense

By Robin B. Kessler, CCA (Certified Clinical Aromatherapist- Also called “The Frankincense Resin Queen.”

This beautiful resin comes from the Ogaden region in Ethiopia. It components are made up of alpha-Pinene, alpha-Thujene, Sabinene, Delta 3 Carene and Limonene.

It is ruled astrologically by the Sun like all Frankincense and has a strong feeling with the heart and chest, physically, and emotionally.  Just like the heat of the sun all types of frankincense are warming, and anti-inflammatory, give a feeling of awe, and promote great feelings of spirituality and contentment. 

This is a very interesting tree because the tree produces 2 resins. Black and White. White is extremely rare because the tree produces more Black then White and only certain times of the year.  The gum-resin of B. Neglecta seeps out of the wounds & cuts on the tree and dries up on the area of injury, sealing the tree’s wounds.

Boswellia Neglecta cannot be tapped to increase the yield of valuable resin, there is less concern of over abuse and unsustainable harvesting practices.  

It is used for burning as incense for its incredible aroma and is quite pliable and sticky when held in one’s hand.  I have broken off a piece and it oozes in my hand.  It is full of essential oil and gum.

This is a much sweeter Boswellia than that of Aden, Oman, Somalia and India with a slight minty note. I have used the resin from the other countries and notice a difference.  The others have more of a masculine woodsy smell.  I actually like this smell better.  It is used in perfume and I can understand why. I took a piece and burned it and the smell was wonderful.  Totally relaxing and I felt like I was drifting into a beautiful sleep, which by the way is one of its uses.  It has been used throughout the ages to enhance spirituality, mental perception, meditation, prayer and consciousness, so I can see why I reacted this way.

Locally it is used as an insect repellant, the gum is also thought to be useful in the treatment of gonorrhea. The bark is often used in tonics and thought to help promote the healing of wounds. Mohamed informed me it is also used for chewing gum in his country to help with stress and to calm the spirits.

Because it may help promote healing of wounds because of its anti-inflammation properties, it can be made into a salve by infusing the resin in a carrier oil and applied gently to the wound.

The resin is great for relaxation and to release anxiety and stress as it gives a sense of calming.  I suggest you try this resin I am sure you will not be disappointed.

It’s essential oil has pale yellow color

It’s essential oil has pale yellow color

The essential oil has basically the same therapeutic properties as the resin only it is not recommended to use internally.  Using a few drops in a diffuser will give you almost the same feeling as burning the resin. Using it in a blend with other essential oils may help one with sleep issues and also give a feeling of peace and calming.  It can be mixed with a carrier oil or put into a salve applied to the chest to open the lungs and enhance deep breathing. The same can be done with the resin when it is infused in a carrier oil.

I use both for different reasons.  I use the resin to burn when I am a bit stressed. I also use the resin when I have a bad cough and my lungs are tight.  I will grind it into a powder and make a salve and apply to my chest. I use the essential oil for clients and myself as well, who are stressed and need some down time.  I work with hospice patients and find mixing the oil in a blend to diffuse or make into a spray to lightly apply to ones pillow actually makes one sleep better and gives them less stress.

I urge you to try both as they both have excellent uses.

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Robin is a Certified Clinical Aromatherapist in Central New Jersey. She received her certification from Aromahead Institute and NY Institute of Aromatic Studies and continue to take courses. She currently consults with and prepares blends for doctors, acupuncturists and chiropractors looking to better understand Aromatherapy and teach educational seminars.

She is also the NJ Central Region Director of NAHA and the Aromatherapy Consultant at the Stein Hospice Group, helping their clients achieve a better quality of life.

“I do private consulting, in person and by phone. I created a Facebook group called “Safe Essential Oil Recipes Only!” which is about safe aromatherapy recipes. I also  formed another Facebook educational group “Frankincense Resins//And All Tree Resins”!