When it comes to essential oils, I believe practical and anecdotal uses are those that can be relied upon to deliver the best results. And so it is with one of the most powerful and versatile oils available, frankincense. I do not say this lightly because, truth be told, I initially shunned frankincense, or “frank” as it is called, because I thought it both exotic and expensive. Slowly, though, I began to recognize its value especially when it comes to skin and wound care and its remarkable ability to relieve inflammation and pain. What is Frankincense? Many know of frankincense as one of the plant-derived treasures, along with myrrh, given to the newborn Jesus in the New Testament. Its use in a religious context goes beyond Christianity, however. According to the Hebrew Bible, frankincense and myrrh were components of the holy incense ritually burned in Jerusalem’s sacred temples during ancient times. Frankincense is derived from the sap from a specific variety of trees in the genus Boswelia. Harvests are done at various times and the more opaque resins are considered to be the best quality. 22 powerful uses of frankincense for health, wellness and healing The following uses of frankincense are based upon my own personal experience or on the experience and knowledge of trusted colleagues in the online community. In going through this list, I am sure that you will agree that frankincense deserves its reputation as the “King of Oils.” 1) Heal wounds from cuts, scrapes and burns. For even greater benefit, apply lavender essential oil first then layer frankincense on top. The combination of these two oils together is amazing when it comes to healing wounds. 2) Reduce and fade scars. Continue use after the wound has healed to reduce and fade scarring. 3) Relieve the symptoms of gout. Mixed 50/50 with a carrier oil, frankincense has been known to relieve the painful symptoms of gout. I know this is true because during our recent vacation, my husband had a flare-up of gout and after applying frank and coconut oil four times daily, the pain was all but gone within three days. 4) Foster strong immune system. The antiseptic properties of frankincense make it ideal for supporting a strong immune system. Massage a few drops into the balls of your feet every day. In addition, try diffusing it throughout your home and especially in the bedroom at night. This is especially good during cold and flu season. 5) Stress and anxiety management. Apply a drop at the temples to relieve stress and evoke a feeling of calmness. You can also rub a few drops mixed in a carrier oil on the back of the neck when you feel anxious. Something else you can do is simply inhale the aroma of the oil by rubbing a drop or two between the palms of your hands then bringing them up to your nose and taking a deep breath. 6) Mitigate depression and feelings of helplessness. Apply a few drops to the back of the neck and especially around the brain stem two or more times daily. 7)Anti-aging. None of us likes to look old. Dabbing frankincense on fine lines and wrinkles will make them less noticeable. A 50/50 blend with a carrier oil (fractionated coconut oil, sweet almond oil) in a glass roller ball is recommended. You can also add a drop of frank to your daily moisturizer. 8) Replacement for NSAIDS/Advil. Frankincense is a powerful anti-Inflammatory and can be used to relieve conditions where pain and inflammation are present. 9) Colds and congestion. Put up to six drops in a sink or bowl filled with very hot water then bend over the sink with a towel draped over your head to contain the steam. Breathe in the vapors for at least five minutes, adding more hot water as needed. Be careful not to scald yourself; the water should be hot, not boiling. 10) Relieve itching. A single drop applied to the affected area will bring immediate relief. 11) Relieve arthritis pain and swelling. Mix with a carrier (such a Simple Salve or DIY healing salve) and rub into aching joints at night before bed and throughout the day, 12) Clear up cystic acne. Dab one drop on stubborn spots of cystic acne morning and night. 13) Relaxation. Add five or six drops to a diffuser and breath in the oil to open the senses and create a calming atmosphere. Perfect for quiet meditation. 14) Remove moles, skin tags, and warts. Apply a single drop three or four times a day until gone. Note that if the mole is dark and ragged around the edges and/or growing quickly, see your healthcare professional for an assessment and possible treatment. 15) Reduce swelling from insect bites. A single drop dabbed on an insect bite will reduce the swelling and stop the itching. 16) Enhance vision. I have seen many references to “studies” that indicate that frankincense will improve vision and possibly eliminate the need for reading glasses. I could not find a single study myself, however. That said, my personal experience tells me that frank will indeed improve vision and if my latest test results are accurate, using frankincense along the orbital bones and under my eye has halted, for now, the progression of glaucoma. Please take care not to get any oil in the eye itself. In this case, less is more. 17) Remove musty odors. Place a couple of drops in a small dish of water and the room will take on a much fresher smell. 18) Restless leg syndrome. Apply two drops Frankincense with carrier oil to the bottom of each foot and massage each night to relieve restless leg syndrome. 19) Oral health: Useful as preventative measure against oral health problems such as bad breath, toothaches, cavities, canker sores and other infections. Try mixing with baking soda and coconut oil to make your own toothpaste. 20) Promote sleep and prevent insomnia. Diffuse frankincense at bedtime to help you slow down your breathing and relieve nervous tension and anxiety. You will sleep like a baby! 21) Boost the healing power of homemade remedies and beauty products. Add a few drops of frankincense to DIY salves, lip balms, and roller balls. It boosts the power of everything else! (More about that in #22 below.) 22) Enhance the efficacy of other essential oils. The best is saved for last. Layer frankincense over another essential oil to enhance that oil’s properties and drive the oils deeper into the cells. This layering will deliver amazing results for those times when you need to kick it up a notch. Essential oils and you Essential oils are adaptive, meaning they adapt to your unique body chemistry. What this means is that sometimes an oil will work for you right away and sometimes you have to be consistent and use it over a period of days to see results. And, in some cases, a particular oil may not work for you at all. Finding the right combination of oil or oils may take some trial and error. In my own experience, I have found that the basics such as lavender, peppermint, oregano, lemon, melaleuca (tea tree) and rosemary work for me without fail, every time. Other, more complex blends may take a while but when they kick in, they carry a punch. And always, frankincense seems to make every oil I use more effective sooner. Practical concerns You will notice that I frequently mention the use of a carrier oil. In most cases, mixing frankincense with a carrier (such as coconut oil or a salve) will make the application easier. In addition, you will be saving money because you will be diluting the oil 50/50. Be cautious, though, and ensure that the Frankincense you purchase is 100 percent essential oil and not pre-diluted. You will want 100 percent pure frankincense so that you can dilute, or not, yourself. I like to dilute 50/50 in a roller ball bottle. For that I use fractionated coconut oil which is in liquid form. If you see the term FCO used, it is an acronym for fractionated coconut oil. Coconut oil is a wondrous substance. To learn more, be sure to read Every Prepper Needs Coconut Oil in Their Pantry. Fair warning though, you will fall in love with this stuff. Although not known for side effects, frankincense essential oil should not be used during pregnancy unless cleared in advance with your healthcare provider. Likewise, always dilute with a carrier oil when used on children. Where to purchase frankincense Frankincense essential oil is widely sold both online and in health food stores. I personally purchase therapeutic grade frankincense from Spark Naturals. Their quality standards are high and because they sell direct and not through a membership or MLM program, their prices are affordable. Spark Naturals also carries a number of supporting carrier oils as well as accessories such as roller ball bottles, dropper tops and more. Furthermore, you can use the code BACKDOORSURVIVAL to get a 10 percent discount off your entire order. The final word It was over a year ago that I tossed two drawers full of over-the-counter remedies into a box in favor of essential oils. To this day, I am still learning how to use the various oils to improve my health and to remedy everyday aches and pains. You might say that essential oils are my Band-Aid® of choice! My own education continues. A few months back I purchased a big fat book entitled “Essential Oils Desk Reference 6th Edition” and I use it almost daily. If you can afford it, I highly recommend that you add this desk reference to your survival library. Although it promotes another brand of oils, the information is presented in an unbiased manner and there is never a sales pitch one way or another. Going forward, I plan to continue to share information on additional, less common, essential oils. There are dozens of oils out there and I am convinced that we can all maintain our health and wellness during times of crisis with the proper selection of essential oils in our first aid kits. Be well and stay safe!


Frankincense Aromatherapy

The essential oil of frankincense, obtained through steam distillation of the dried resin, is used in perfumery and cosmetics as well as in the creation of ritual anointing oils. Its scent can be described as sweet, spicy/warm, lemony and piney.

The fragrance of frankincense is said to elevate the mind and to aid in meditation and visualization, centering and connecting to Spirit. It is also used to help achieve calm, relaxation and a general sense of wellness.

Frankincense in Healing

Frankincense is an edible resin that can be used in tonics to ensure good digestion and clear skin. Frankincense used internally should be clear and free of dark impurities.

Indian Frankincense, Boswellia serrata, called dhoop is used in Ayurvedic medicine to speed the healing of wounds, balance the female system and help with the treatment of arthritis.

Burning frankincense inside the home is said to purify the atmosphere, drive away disease and encourage good health.

Frankincense essential oil can be added to skin care products designed to soften and moisturize dry skin, to reduce and slow signs of aging, to speed the healing of blemishing and minor wounds, and to reduce scarring.

Frankincense in Magic and Ritual

Burning frankincense is a suitable offering to any Sun God. It may have been used in the past as an offering to Ra and Bel. According to some translations of the Orphic Hymns, Frankincense is a suitable offering to ApolloAresArtemisAsklepiosZeusBoreasEosDikeThe ErinyesHephaistosHeraklesHermesHygeiaThe KouretesKorybasDionysosMnemosyneNikeThe MusesNotosOuranosPalaimonthe BacchaiThemisThe TitansTycheZephyrosMercuryDianaJoveDaimonesVulcanSilenosSatyros

Frankincense resin is useful for fumigating sacred space in preparation of any ritual as it burns away negativity and raises the energy of the space. Some believe this is the most powerful and useful incense for this purpose and it is used for exorcism as well.

Essential oil of frankincense has been added to anointing oil used for rites of passage rituals, particularly for infants.

It was also used for part of the embalming process by ancient Egyptians.

To Use Frankincense

Frankincense resin can be burned over hot coals in a brazier. It is often crushed and mixed with other resins, particularly myrrh. Adding frankincense to any incense blend will increase the action of the other woods, herbs and resins in the blend.

To use frankincense for suffumigation - Once the brazier is smoking nicely, use a feather, a fan or your hand to direct the smoke around the space, person or object you wish to fumigate or pass an object to be cleansed through the smoke as it rises. Be careful not to inhale too much smoke as inhaling any smoke is dangerous and frankincense smoke has a slightly psychoactive effect.

As an offering, frankincense can be burned in a brazier over charcoals or placed directly into the ritual fire after it has been blessed and dedicated.

Frankincense essential oil can be combined with other oils and a carrier oil to make anointing oil.

Frankincense correspondences

Planet Sun
Element Air and Fire
Chakra Brow

Keywords Divinity, royalty, kingship, life, birth


Sandalwood (Hawaiian) (Santalum paniculatum) Contemplative stillness. Sandalwood has long been relied upon to quiet the mind, encourage contemplative meditation, and clear muddied thoughts. After the loss of a loved one, Sandalwood is particularly helpful in releasing ties and calming leftover emotions. It brings a sense of clarity and offers peace and stillness.

Cinnamon Bark

Cinnamon Bark (Cinnamon zeylanicum) Penetrating, warm comfort. Just like bark protects a tree, Cinnamon’s warm and invigorating action helps to protect us in uncertain times. Cinnamon Bark provides a safety shield as we face the outside world in troubling times and encourages us to remain actively engaged in our own lives as we navigate the turmoil within. (Be sure to use a safe dilution using Cinnamon for topical application.)


Cedarwood (Juniperus virginiana) Courage to preservere. Cedarwood facilitates our ability to stand strong and endure challenging emotional times. It is at once grounding and encouraging of forward thinking in that it holds us steady in unsteady times while asking us to be confident about moving forward.

Ylang Ylang

Ylang Ylang is a powerful remedy for the heart. Modern day society honours and reveres the mind over the heart. Yet the heart, with its intuitive ways of receiving information, is an essential part of the soul.

Ylang Ylang reconnects an individual with the child self and the pure, simple ways of the heart. It encourages play and restores a childlike nature and innocence. It assists in accessing intuition or “heart knowing.

Ylang Ylang is also a powerful remedy for releasing emotional trauma from the past. It is a fantastic support in age regression work and other methods of emotional healing.

Ylang Ylang also assists individuals in releasing bottled up emotions such as anger and sadness. Feelings that have been buried inside are easily brought to the light through Ylang Ylang’s assistance. This oil allows emotional healing to flow naturally, nurturing the heart through the process. It reminds the individual that joy can be felt and experienced more fully by allowing the heart its full range of emotions.

Negative Emotions: Joylessness, overstressed, grief, sadness, loss of a loved one, disconnected from inner-child

Positive Properties: Freedom, playful, intuitive, heart healing, emotionally filled, joyful, accepting