Plant Origin: South America
Method: Steam distilled from balsam
The Copaiba is a tall tree that is native to regions of South America, most notably the Amazonian Basin of Brazil. This 100% natural balsam is drawn from the trunks of the copaiba tree in a manner that does not harm the trees, and then it is gently refined. Copaiba contains the highest amounts of beta caryophyllene of any known essential oil. Beta caryophyllene research suggests that it may reduce inflammation and be effective against bacteria. It occurs naturally in cloves, black currant buds, yarrow, grapefruit, allspice and black pepper.
Properties and Uses
Copaiba balsam is generally yellow-brown in color, and it has a soft, pleasant, earthy aroma. Natives have used the balsam for generations to treat wounds, prevent tetanus and infection and to heal psoriasis and other skin conditions.
Copaiba has a strong antiseptic, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory and has germicidal actions. It is used topically as analgesic.
Copaiba is suggested for use for acne, eczema, psoriasis and a myriad of skin conditions, cut and wound care, dandruff and other scalp issues and it is noted to restore shine to hair.
Copaiba has been shown to be beneficial in the treatment of health problems associated with anxiety, chronic congestion of the mucous membranes, bronchitis, conditions of irritable bladder, skin diseases and chronic diarrhea. It is effective in reducing inflammation, relieving the treatment of fungal infections and pain conditions.
Copaiba was cytotoxic to B16F10 (mouse) melanoma cells in vitro, and oral administration significantly reduced lung tumors (which has metastasized from injected B16F10 cells) in mice (Lima et al 2003).
Application Suggestions (see Essential Oil Usage):
Topical: Dilute and apply on area of concern, bottoms of feet or as desired. Dilution is not required except for very sensitive skin.
Inhalation: Directly inhale or diffuse (may be too thick to diffuse as a single oil in a glass nebulizing diffuser).
Internal: Copaiba is suitable for internal use within safe parameters. We feel that internal use is rarely *needed* and should only be used with respect for how concentrated the oils are. Click here for information about internal usage. Suitable to take as a dietary supplement. Suggested use: 2 drops in a capsule, take three times daily as desired/needed.
1. I have struggled recently with thrush [fungal issue] in my mouth and irritating sores on my gums and tongue. My tongue has felt raw and burning. My MD prescribed an oral rinse that basically was an expensive dud. I had some Copaiba that I got for my eczema, and thinking that my mouth issues were probably also related to the fungal issues, I decided I was desparate enough to try it. I tipped my head back and let about 3 drops fall into my mouth. I swished it as long as I could and then swallowed it. The relief was immediate, and less than three days later all the sores were gone. This stuff is fantastic! - E.T.
2. I just wanted to update a post I wrote nearly a month ago... I have been applying Frankincense and Copaiba oils to a sebaceous cyst on my back, and within two weeks the size had reduced. It's now less than half the size it was, and when it's gone completely or nearly gone, I hope to post pictures. I took "before" photos and am eager to take some "after" photos! These oils really work!! :) - Joanne
3. We have used Frankincense and Copaiba (3 drops each) with coconut oil in a gelatin capsule for intense pain, and it was pretty effective. - Sally
Copaiba is non-toxic.
Avoid contact with the eye. Essential oils are lipophilic, meaning they are attracted to fat—like the membranes of your eye and skin. Essential oils are hydrophobic, meaning they do not like water. Flushing with water will only send the essential oil back to the eye's membranes. Wiping with carrier oil will create another fat for the essential oil to be attracted to other than the membranes of the eye. We’ve not known this to cause permanent injury or long-term discomfort, but if you feel concerned, please call your doctor if necessary.
Tisserand, Robert, Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Edition 2014, page 259.