Vanilla bean a truly wonderful, spicy, aromatic, extremely versatile, yet expensive and arguably under-rated oil. Vanilla is widely used in many industries for many purposes and remains as popular today as it has been for many centuries, where it was mainly coveted as a powerful aphrodisiac.
Vanilla, belonging to the Orchidaceae family, is a perennial herbaceous climbing vine, producing clusters of white-yellow flowers and green stems that turn into fragrant brown-coloured pods. The vanilla bean has to be fermented and dried to turn it into the fragrant brown vanilla beans that we purchase today, and this can take up to six months to complete.
Vanilla production is also very labour intensive, from pollination to harvest, to curing, vanilla is cultivated much today as it has been for centuries, by hand. As a result, Vanilla is the second most expensive spice, after Saffron, as a visit to your local supermarket/grocery store will certainly attest.
Vanilla uses and benefits
Vanilla has many uses, for example, it is widely used in the culinary industry as flavouring, particularly in sweets like ice-cream, custard, and cakes as well as in beverages such as soft drinks, tea and even coffee. It is also used extensively in the cosmetic industry and can be found in moisturizer, shampoo, and conditioners, soaps and lip balms to name but just a few. Vanilla can also be found as a major constituent in many of the world’s most popular perfumes. And of course, in Aromatherapy, it is promoted for its sweet, perfumed, woody aroma. There are other industries that also use vanilla, making it a very versatile product.
Magical And Spiritual Properties Of Vanilla
Its magickal properties are of love, sensuality, seduction, peace, dreams, and luck. The aromatic essence of Vanilla induces sensuality, sexuality, and romance while enhancing emotional growth, and attracting good fortune. In fact, in days gone by, Vanilla was much sought-after as a highly potent aphrodisiac. Still today, many healers consider it a powerful aphrodisiac that relaxes the nerves and stimulates the senses.
Originally native to Central America and Mexico, today Vanilla is grown in many regions around the world. The most common varieties of Vanilla are:
• Bourbon vanilla, cultivated mainly in Madagascar – moderate floral tones
• Mexican vanilla – smooth, deep, dark, rich, smoky
• Tahitian vanilla – highly aromatic, floral with tones of ripe fresh fruit
Bourbon, Mexican, and Tahitian Vanilla all have their own distinctive aroma and therefore they all have something different to offer, depending on its intended use.
At The TL Collection we prefer to use Tahitian Vanilla in our hand-poured soy candles. It’s highly aromatic, floral, sweet, fruity tones blend perfectly with so many other essential oils. For example, our Vanilla Spice blend consists of Vanilla, Orange, Mandarin, Rose, Geranium, Cinnamon, Ginger.
This is a wonderful sweet blend that promotes love, happiness, and enthusiasm. Vanilla with it’s rich, sweet, balsamic scent, and aphrodisiac properties invokes sensuality, sexuality, and romance. Orange is added for cheer, celebration, enthusiasm, creativity, and happiness. Mandarin promotes happiness, celebration, joy, and harmony.
Geranium keeps negative energies away and inspires love and happiness. Cinnamon is used to raise energetic vibrations and clear energy blockages. Ginger is warm, spicy, and energizing. Burning this fragrant blend invokes energy, joy, and of course, love.
Whether you are enjoying arguably the most popular ice-cream flavour, drinking an exotic tea, applying a lip balm, wearing an oriental perfume, or basking in its magical properties of love, sensuality, and romance, Vanilla is truly versatile and it’s highly aromatic tones certainly, makes for a powerful aphrodisiac. © Linda Philip