Stay away from lavender when choosing skincare products

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    Cytotoxicity of lavender oil and its major components to human skin cells

    Prashar A, Locke IC, Evans CS

    Abstract: Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) oil, chiefly composed of linalyl acetate (51%) and linalool (35%), is considered to be one of the mildest of known plant essential oils and has a history in wound healing. Concerns are building about the potential for irritant or allergenic skin reactions with the use of lavender oil. This study has demonstrated that lavender oil is cytotoxic to human skin cells in vitro (endothelial cells and fibroblasts) at a concentration of 0.25% (v/v) in all cell types tested (HMEC-1, HNDF and 153BR). The major components of the oil, linalyl acetate and linalool, were also assayed under similar conditions for their cytotoxicity. The activity of linalool reflected that of the whole oil, indicating that linalool may be the active component of lavender oil. Linalyl acetate cytotoxicity was higher than that of the oil itself, suggesting suppression of its activity by an unknown factor in the oil. Membrane damage is proposed as the possible mechanism of action.

    Cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of Lavandula stoechas aqueous extracts

    Celik TA (Celik, Tulay Askin), Aslanturk OS (Aslanturk, Ozlem Sultan)

    Abstract: Lavandula genus is an important member of Labiatae (Lamiaceae) family. People use commonly Lavandula stoechas as a medicinal plant for various diseases around the world and also in Turkey. The aim of this study was to investigate cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of aqueous extracts (40, 80 and 120 g/L) from L. stoechas flowers on Allium cepa root tip meristem cells. For this purpose, A. cepa onion bulbs were treated with the above-mentioned L. stoechas flower extracts for 72 h. Spring water (pH 7.3) was used as a control. The result of this study sowed that aqueous extracts reduced mitotic index, but induced chromosome aberrations and mitotic aberrations in comparison with control, significantly (p < 0.05). Aqueous extracts induced breaks, stickiness, pole deviations and micronuclei. Furthermore, these effects were related to extract concentrations. These results showed that L. stoechas aqueous extracts have cytotoxic and genotoxic effects.

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