We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Rue Oil?

Sara Schmidt
By
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
The Health Board is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At The Health Board, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A home herbal remedy, rue oil is used for various gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and other body system ailments. Known for its strong, bitter aroma, rue is a toxic yet effective insect repellent. The essential oil, also used in recipes and cosmetics, has a rich history of folklore and superstitious use.

Rue oil, also known as ruta graveolens, garden rue, or herbygrass, is used in perfume oils and other cosmetics. Herbal vinegars, alcohols, and other flavorings are sometimes made from rue. Rue oil is considered an appropriate complement to other herbs, such as wormwood, myrrh, fennel, chamomile, vervain, penny royal, thyme, and bay.

As a medicine, rue oil is used to treat glaucoma, gout, itchy skin, rheumatism, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, warts, and various wounds. Contusions, fainting spells, dry socket, headaches, convulsions, compression wounds, high blood pressure, toothaches, foot pain, anxiety, epilepsy, and stiffness can also be relieved with rue. Over 100 chemicals, including alkaloids and flavanoids, are found within the woody herb.

Other products that may list rue oil as an ingredient include bath oils, air fresheners, soaps, and incense. Light rings, potpourri, and laundry soap can also be made from rue oil. Spas may utilize the herbal remedy in their services, such as in hair treatments or facial steams.

Traditionally the rue herb was used to cure or prevent poisonings, ward off the plague, aid in abortions, and treat digestive and nervous problems. A symbol of repentance, grace, and memory, it was also thought to protect against evil, witches, and other medieval fears. Since it was believed that rue protected against diseases that criminals carried, it was often scattered within courts of law in Great Britain. Some people used the herb as a recreational drug during this period.

The oil itself should never be taken internally, as it is poisonous. A health care professional should be consulted prior to use. Gloves should be worn when handling the oil at all times. Overdose can cause burning, sun sensitivity, skin irritation, poisoning, or death. Pregnant and nursing women should avoid the oil entirely.

Native to Europe, the perennial rue evergreen shrub has tough, woody branches. The plant features small leaves that are blue-green in color, and during the summer it grows yellow four-petaled flowers. After the flowers bloom, four-lobed capsules featuring the herb develop. Rue can also thrive in other temperate, tropical areas, though it is known to grow on old walls, limestone, and dry hills.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Sara Schmidt
By Sara Schmidt
With a Master's Degree in English from Southeast Missouri State University, Sara Schmidt puts her expertise to use by writing for The Health Board, plus various magazines, websites, and nonprofit organizations. She published her own novella and has other literary projects in the works. Sara's diverse background includes teaching children in Spain, tutoring college students, running CPR and first aid classes, and organizing student retreats, reflecting her passion for education and community engagement.
Discussion Comments
By tanner182 — On Jul 29, 2011

@Almita - As a parent, yes -- you should avoid rue oil. It can cause abortion in pregnant women and is extremely toxic. The amount in cleaning fluids is very small, so just wear cleaning gloves and you'll be fine.

I was looking up essential oil information and it was a surprise to read about rue oil. A website I found listed rue oil uses -- in perfumes, aromatherapy, cleaning supplies and so on.

The one thing that bothered me the most was that it listed rue oil being used in flavoring things and right below it in the paragraph -- it listed how rue oil should never be taken internally. Then why is it in flavoring?

I think half of everybody's health problems come from what we put in our food. We literally are putting poisons in our food, just because we think it's safe in small amounts. If every company did that with different types of toxins -- exactly how many do we eat everyday?

I think you are absolutely right -- rue oil should be avoided unless you have something it can cure. It has saved a lot of lives.

By Almita — On Jul 28, 2011

Okay, I find it a little creepy that rue oil is used in so many cleaners. It kills fungi and lots of types of bacteria -- and it's in things we use everyday.

I found information on this oil while looking up aromatherapy and message oils. As a parent, I don't think that it's such a good idea to breath rue oil in aroma therapy -- even in the smallest amount!

Spraying it around the house when cleaning is just as bad. Why in the world is it considered such a wonderful thing if it's so toxic and dangerous?

Sara Schmidt
Sara Schmidt
With a Master's Degree in English from Southeast Missouri State University, Sara Schmidt puts her expertise to use by writing for The Health Board, plus various magazines, websites, and nonprofit organizations. She published her own novella and has other literary projects in the works. Sara's diverse background includes teaching children in Spain, tutoring college students, running CPR and first aid classes, and organizing student retreats, reflecting her passion for education and community engagement.
The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

The Health Board, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.