• The history of arnica has its roots all the way back in the 16th century, when it was a popular folk remedy in many locations, including North America, Germany, and Russia.

  • Arnica is a genus of perennial herbs belonging to the sunflower family (Asteraceae).

  • Among the several species, the more popular one is the Heterotheca inuloidesis.

  • The genus name Arnica may be derived from the Greek arna, "lamb," in reference to the soft leaves.

  • Known to improve skin appearance and also support the immune system.




Arnica is a genus of perennial herbs belonging to the sunflower family (Asteraceae). There are several species, but the more common species used for medicinal purposes – and native to Mexico, is Heterotheca inuloidesis. The oil is an extract of the arnica plant, that grows in the mountain regions. Mexican arnica is a perennial member of the daisy family that grows in Mexico and in the American Southwest. Its plant can be 15 to 20 inches tall and has simple leaves that are alternate. As for their look, they are ovate and serrulate. Flowers are corymbs of yellow from July to August. It is a well-known herbal remedy for bruises, pain, and strains. Mexican Arnica is native to Central Mexico. Although the distilled extract of arnica is toxic to ingest, but when diluted or applied topically, it is may help with a range of health conditions. Generally, arnica oil is known to make your hair look shiny. We will take a detailed look into its benefits later in this blog.




The history of arnica has its roots all the way back in the 16th century, when it was a popular folk remedy in many locations, including North America, Germany, and Russia. Back then, it was known to be used for treating blunt injuries, bruises, skin lesions, and inflammations. The renowned Shakespeare of Germany, Goethe, also appreciated the benefits of arnica. It is said that he regularly brewed arnica tea during his recovery from a heart attack.

A North American indigenous tribe, prepared a tea from arnica roots to ease back pains. Throughout history, arnica has been known to be used in Russian folk medicine to treat various conditions.




Arnica, also known as Leopard's Bane, Mountain Tobacco, and Wolf's Bane, has been used for centuries to soothe bruising, sprains, and inflammation. Arnica oil is popularly known to improve your hair appearance by adding a shine to it. Arnica is rich in skin-friendly nutrients that can help improve the appearance of scars. These properties make arnica oil well suited for use in all sorts of spa services, ranging from sports massages to facials. It is also a popular product when it comes to improving the skin appearance, for the area that has been tainted by scars. Not just that, it is also known to support the immune system, which may eventually lead to faster healing times for minor bruises.

It can also be used for improving the rashes and stretch marks along with improving the skin appearance by reducing the dark circles. The topical application of arnica oil is common to soothe mild acne as the monounsaturated fats found in this oil are able to soothe the mild inflammation on the skin. Arnica oil's topical application is also known to support cartilage and joint function. It is thus evident that arnica is a skincare all-star.

While these are some of the key benefits of arnica herbal oil, it is understandable how modern arnica products remain popular across Europe and North America and are generally available in most organic food stores and drug stores.




The genus of arnica comprises approximately 40 species, among which the more popular one is the Heterotheca inuloidesis. It is native to Mexico and grows in Chihuahua State, the Federal District, Puebla, and Oaxaca. It is popularly used as a substitution when formulating topical skincare products. It can also be used in the preparation of tinctures, creams, ointments, compresses, and poultices. It is known to reduce mild inflammation when applied topically. But it is important to note that it should only be applied topically to unbroken skin as it is highly toxic to ingest and doing so might increase the bleeding of wounds.




Mexican Arnica prefers a sunny location and can tolerate temperatures down to 12°C (10°F). It requires dry to moderately moist soil for a healthy crop. But, It is important to note that the soil should be gritty-sandy or gritty-loamy soil.

Mexican Arnica flowers are normally harvested when they are in full, fresh bloom, and the stem can just be discarded as it is not used. That would be the case in mid to late summer. A rhizome is a continuously growing horizontal underground stem that puts out lateral shoots and adventitious roots at the interval. These can be collected in the fall after the foliage has died off. The rhizomes are dried and powdered and used in the same proportions as dried flowers.




To learn more about our different herbal oil products and how they can enhance a sense of well-being, check out our articles on our website's Herbal Oils page. Be sure to browse our Essential Oil product pages for more information on the oils that catch your interest.

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As with all NDA products, the Arnica Herbal Oil mentioned in this article is for external use only. Due to the highly concentrated nature of our products, they must be tested prior to topical use. We recommend consulting a medical practitioner prior to using any of our products for therapeutic purposes, particularly for those who are pregnant, nursing, or who have a pre-existing medical condition.

Possible side effects from the use of Arnica Herbal Oil include irritation or allergic reaction from topical use. To reduce the risk of adverse reaction, a skin patch test should be performed before prior to using the product. In the event of an adverse reaction, discontinue the use of the product and see medical healthcare professional for appropriate remedial action. Certain products may pose additional risks depending on individual health and medical history. To prevent side effects, it is best to consult with a physician prior to use.

Arnica Herbal Oil must not be used near the eyes, inner nose, ears, or on any areas of the skin that are known to be sensitive. They should always be stored in an area that is inaccessible to children, particularly those under the age of 7.

IMPORTANT: All New Directions Aromatics (NDA) products are for external use only unless otherwise indicated. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, and it should not be used by anyone who is pregnant or under the care of a medical practitioner. Please refer to our policies for further details, and our disclaimer below.

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