What Is Citrus Nobilis (Mandarin Orange) Oil?

What Is Citrus Nobilis (Mandarin Orange) Oil?

This is part of our ongoing series helping consumers better understand chemicals, chemistry, and product formulations. We translate the science, bust the myths, and give you an honest assessment, so you can make informed choices for your family!


Citrus nobilis (mandarin orange) oil (also known as “citrus reticulata oil” and tangerine oil)

What it is:

Mandarin oranges are a sweet treat for the kiddos and their peels are also the source of one of the most widely used essential oils (1). Fresh mandarin orange peels go through a quick cold-press process to give us this glorious oil.

What it does:

We use this essential oil in several products, including our hand soap and deodorant, for its sweet, refreshing scent.

Why we use it:

We love gifts from nature that are effective, easy to source, and take relatively little effort to process into a raw ingredient for commercial use. Of course, it has to be safe as used, too (2,3)! Mandarin orange oil checks all the boxes – plus, it’s a renewable resource that utilizes a part of the fruit that’s often thrown out. That’s a smart use of natural resources!


  1. National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy. Retrieved November 29, 2015, from https://www.naha.org/explore-aromatherapy/about-aromatherapy/most-commonly-used-essential-oils
  2. Belsito, D. V., Hill, R. A., Klaassen, C. D., Liebler, D. C., Marks Jr, J. G., Shank, R. C., ... & Snyder, P. W. (2014). Safety Assessment of Citrus-Derived Peel Oils as Used in Cosmetics.
  3. Tisserand, R., & Young, R. (2013). Essential oil safety: a guide for health care professionals. Elsevier Health Sciences.

This post was revised as of 1/14/2016.

We aim to provide you with the most honest and credible information possible. This article was reviewed for accuracy by The Honest Team and was written based on trusted sources that are linked at the bottom of the article.