What is Limonene?
Limonene is the terpenic compound often found in peels of citrus fruits such as oranges, lemon, grapefruit, mandarin, and lime. The orange has a maximum amount (97%) of limonene in its rind’s essential oil. Limonene is also responsible for the strong aroma. It is obtained via hydro distillation method, i.e. the rind is boiled gently in water and vapors collected separately to get the limonene separated as an essential oil. It comes as clear, colorless liquids. The limonene is a chiral molecule meaning its properties slightly change as the positioning of any molecule changes. There are mainly two varieties: d- limonene and l-limonene. D-limonene is medicinally used and l-limonene has more of turpentine like odor. While d-limonene has light, fresh and sweet citrus odor.
Use & Benefits:
Due to its fragrance, it is vastly used in household cleaning products, to soaps, and herbal insecticides. When it is applied to the skin via any product, it gets readily absorbed through the skin. It can also be considered as enhancer since it can also enhance the penetration of other molecules. It is a natural strong antioxidant. It donates electrons to another atom or molecule and thereby acts as a free radical scavenger as well. So, it becomes a substitute for the free radicals in place of skin protein, thus it saves skin from damage and premature aging. It also reduces inflammation in various pathways. So, when applied to irritated skin, it can calm the skin. It is used in the perfumery, aromatic therapy and other skincare products.