Getting Down to Essentials: Balsam of Peru Oil


When you think of Peru, you probably think of Machu Pichu, the Andes or maybe even llamas. More than likely, essential oil probably doesn’t come to mind. But one essential oil associated with Peru is rather unforgettable. It’s Balsam of Peru, though point of fact, the tree it comes from has its origins in El Salvador and not Peru.

All that aside, Balsam of Peru essential oil has a distinct aroma that clients won’t soon forget. It’s sweet and vanilla-like with a hint of cinnamon and possibly a bit of cloves.   The oil is derived from a special tree found in Central America and northern parts of South America called the Myroxylon balsamum tree. The oil has been used in medicinal and cosmetic ointments for centuries.

Balsam of Peru essential oil is extracted from the tree resin in two different ways. The bark can be cut to make the resin exude; and then when dry, it is collected.  In another extraction method, a portion of the bark is burned to stimulate exudation of the resin, then wrapped in cloths to absorb the resin for some weeks before pressing the cloth to extract the resin.[1]

Balsam of Balsam of Peru smells of vanilla and cinnamon because it contains 60-70 percent cinnamein (a combination of cinnamic acid, cinnamyl cinnamate, benzyl benzoate, benzoic acid and vanillin). The other 30-40 percent contains resins of unknown composition. It also contains essential oils similar to those in citrus fruit peel.



Aromatherapy: Balsam of Peru essential oil is soothing and so can be helpful during times of anxiety and stress.  It is a favorite for diffusion and blends well with many other types of oils.

Anti-inflammatory: Balsam of Peru has anti-inflammatory qualities, so that’s it is used both as a topical application for wounds and aching joints as well as internally to lower blood pressure and increase heart rate. [2]

Anti-bacterial: The active ingredients of Balsam of Peru essential oil have been associated with eliminating germs and bacteria, so that it’s used for cleansing areas that may be susceptible to invasion or infection. [3]

You’ll find Balsam of Peru in the following BIOTONE products:

Muscle & Joint Therapeutic Massage Gel: This gel is ideal for sore joints and aching muscles. Helps to promote joint wellness and give soothing relief to strains, sprains and other injuries. Gives more coverage than oil so you use much less. Smooth, even glide without a greasy feel.

Muscle & Joint Therapeutic Massage Cream: Inflammation-reducing, healing qualities offer muscle and joint recovery benefits for maximum sports massage effectiveness. This revolutionary therapeutic creme utilizes naturally healing ingredients to provide the ultimate massage for clients with sore joints and aching muscles. Contains the ground-breaking ingredient Glucosamine which has been associated with the support of healthy tissue and joints.

 Calming Aromatherapy Massage Lotion: This lotion is excellent for all massage modalities. Extended glide with less reapplications. A light, natural aroma helps harmonize the body and comforts the senses. Paraben-free.


[1] “Balsam de Peru,” Essential Oils Center, accessed March 24, 2021.
[2] Staughton, John. “8 Surprising Benefits of Balsam of Peru Essential Oil, Organic Facts, January 30, 2020.
[3] IBID
Massage therapySpa therapyTreatment ideas