Essential oils

MANUKA, Leptospermum scoparium


SKU: 1055 Category:

Latin name : Leptospermum scoparium

Distilled part: leaves

Origin: New Zealand

Properties: antibacterial +++, antifungal +++, antiviral + + +, cicatrisant, atmospheric disinfectant, skin regenerative, antispasmodic

Indications: gram + bacteria: Staphyloccocus (aureus, epidermidis), Streptococcus (faecalis, agalactiae), so-called Gram – bacteria : Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Klebsiella pneumoniae, Candida albicans, Tricophyton rubrum, Aspergillus niger, Microsporum canis, mentagrophytes, respiratory tract infections, ORL infections, various skin infections (acne), psoriasis, herpes I and II, oral hygiene: gingivitis, halitosis, ulcers

Contraindications None at physiological doses.

The opinion of our expert: 


Author: Maurice Nicole, nes

Manuka is one of the most widespread native plants in New Zealand and there are up to 11 different chemotypes.

It is a hail tree growing up to 8 m high. The foliage is grey-green in colour, the leaves are small with strong needles. The small, pink to red flowers look like miniature roses. An abundant first flowering occurs in winter, followed by a second flowering in summer.

Manuka is the Maori term for L. scoparium. The plant is sometimes referred to as “Ti-tree” but should not be confused with the Australian Tea Tree. This tree has long been valued for its healing properties by the Maori people (the indigenous Aotearoa people of New Zealand).

The essential oil of manuka is obtained by steam distillation of the leaves of Leptospermum scoparium harvested mainly in the East Cape region, the easternmost point of New Zealand’s main islands. This essential oil is distinguished by the presence of 20% to 30% of tricétones (leptospermone, isoleptospermone and flavesone) which give it its unique antimicrobial properties. Among the 11 chemotypes listed it is the most commercialized and the most studied. This chemotype is also found in the Marlborough area, another area of New Zealand located in the northeast corner of the South Island.


This particular chemotype has been shown to be 20 to 30 times more effective than Melaleuca alternifolia essential oil against gram+ bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus, S. aureus MRSA , S. epidermis, S. faecalis, S. epidermis. S. agalactiae, Micrococcus luteus, Sarcina lutea, Bacillus subtilis, Listeria monocytogen and many others, even those resistant to antibiotics. Although several studies report that this essential oil has negligible activity against gram- bacteria such as E. coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumonia, Proteus vulgaris Porter and Wilkins’ study showed that it could inhibit gram- bacteria such as E. coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa as well as Candida albicans.


Several studies and clinical trials have confirmed the interest of this essential oil to treat acne due to its antimicrobial activities (against Propionebacterium acnes), anti-seborrheic, astringent and anti-inflammatory.


The essential oil of manuka has many applications in oral health.

In the form of gargle, it allows patients with head and neck cancers to protect their oropharyngeal cavity by reducing inflammation and mucositis induced by radiotherapy.

This essential oil is able to inhibit all the cariogenic bacteria responsible for periodonpathies such as Porphyromonasgingivalis, Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans, Fusobacterium nucleatum, Streptococcus mutans, and Streptococcus sobrinus. It can also inhibit the formation of biofilms and is therefore ideal for the prevention and treatment of dental plaque. The study by Takarada (2005) suggests the use of essential oils, including manuka, for the maintenance of oral health and the treatment of halitosis. 


Several studies have demonstrated its antifungal activity against various species of fungi often responsible for dermatophytosis (skin infections): Trichosporon mucoides, Malassezia furfur, Candida albicans, Microsporum canis, Trichophyton rubrum, Trichophyton terrestre and Trichophyton mentagrophytes.


Reichling et al (2005) demonstrated the significant antiviral activity of this essential oil against herpes viruses HSV-1 and HSV-2, even strains resistant to acyclovir. It directly neutralizes free viruses outside the cells. Once inside the cells, the essential oil cannot prevent viral replication, with the exception of the HSV-1 virus where a decrease in viral replication of around 40% has been observed. Subsequent work by Sojka (2005), Schnitzler et al(2008), and Magsombol (2012) confirmed those of Reichling.


Lis-Balchin & Heart (1995, 1998) & Lis-Balchin et. al. (2000), after studying the effects of this essential oil on guinea pig ileum, the booze cervicis (skeletal muscle) of the chick the diaphragm and uterus of the rat in vitro have concluded that manuka essential oil produces a spasmolytic action on smooth muscles and skeletal muscles. This work supports its use as a muscle relaxant and muscle relaxant in aromatherapy.


Lis-Balchin et al (1996, 2000) demonstrated the antioxidant activity of manuka essential oil and found it superior to that of Tea-Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) essential oil.
Kwon et al (2013) evaluated its UV-B photoprotective effect and demonstrated that, depending on the dose used, topical application prevents skin thickening and wrinkling and suppresses UV-B-induced skin inflammation by inhibiting inflammatory cytokines.


As a result of their investigation Chen et al (2014) validated the anti-inflammatory effects of manuka essential oil and determined that it inhibits tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), a proinflammatory cytokine, without blocking Interleukin 4 (IL-4), an anti-inflammatory cytokine capable of inhibiting the proinflammatory cytokines Interleukin-1 (IL-1) and Interleukin-6 (IL-6). These results suggest that this essential oil is ideal for treating infected skin lesions and wounds as well as being used as an active ingredient in skin care products.

The β-tricetones of the essential oil of manuka are used in the composition of anti-dandruff shampoos because of their antifungal activity against Malassezia, a kind of yeast that proliferates in the scalp and sebum.


Its acaricidal activity was established as a result of the work of Jeong (2008) and Jeong and al (2009) which showed that triketones from L scoparium kill three species of mites : Dermatophagoides farinae, D. pteronyssinus and Tyrophagus putrescentiae.


Essential oils :

  • Leptospermum scoparium x 3 ml
  • Laurus nobilis x 1 ml
  • Mentha x piperita x 1 ml

White clay, buy desired quantity

  1. Toothpaste: pour a pinch of white clay on the wet toothbrush, add 1 drop of the essential oil mixture, gently brush teeth and gums.
  2. Bad breath: pour 1-2 drops on a DGL licorice tablet and chew several times a day or pour 5 drops in a little water, shake and then rinse your mouth with the mixture.
Additional information

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