I Hate Clove Essential Oil – A Man Versus Oils Review

Ok, let’s get this out from the start, I hate cloves! I had a bad experience with them as a child and cannot stand the taste, smell or anything else they might be used for (you can read about it at the bottom of this post). My lovely wife purchased clove essential oil a while ago and my reaction was, to be honest, probably not what she expected. Although she did nearly send herself blind as she eye-rolled my rant. But it did follow the lines of I hate clove essential oils. “It doesn’t deserve to even be a spice” I told her. In fact I was at one stage going to enroll in some sort of degree that allowed me to wipe out the entire genus… I can overreact at times…

I Hate Clove Essential Oils - clove box

But my father always taught me that you cannot hate anything that you know little to nothing about so I decided to man up and see what I could find out. And somewhat annoyingly, as I started to look at it it seems to be becoming the oil that refuses to just slip quietly into the night as I have found myself looking at pages about it, sniffing it and even adding it to the diffuser more and more recently as part of my research and mansperiments. So, after some careful consideration and internal soul-searching, I have decided to just steer into the skid and get it all out of my system. Let’s then take dear old dad’s advice and go on a journey to discover some clove essential oil uses for men.

Clove essential oil on the Skin

You may remember my groundbreaking post on hot oils from a few weeks back in regards to clove making that list. So, for any use on the skin, ALWAYS use a carrier oil. Never put clove oil directly on your skin. Why you would want to is beyond me based on the aroma but anyway…

Clove oil is a natural Acne treatment

It turns out, clove may be a very good natural acne treatment. Mix 2 drops (start here and increase to 5 if not too strong) with 2 tablespoons of Jojoba oil and massage into infected area twice a day. If it is too strong, try adding a few drops of Lavender to soften the mix and aroma.

Cracked hands and feet: Clove essential oil is a solution

If it one thing that hot oils have in common, it is their anti-inflammatory benefits. There is some research to this – as per my hot oils post – but it is limited as usual. If you have cracked feet and/or hands from too much manly walking or work or as in my case, just not drinking enough water, then drink some water and try:

Rub onto the affected areas morning and night. I have tried this and seen some improvement. I can’t guarantee it is the clove and not just the drinking of water and coconut oil. But there is definite improvement that was not there without the oils. I guess it is just one of those things that is worth a manly try…

Clove essential oil in the Diffuser

As it turns out, the aroma of clove can actually become quite a good bed buddy for other oils when mixed in a diffuser. Apparently it has a warm, spicy aroma. I have mentioned this in the past within my manly Christmas diffuser recipes so I will not repeat them again here. I did some hunting and some mansperimenting and came up with the following clove essential oil diffuser recipes. After all, if I use it it will be gone hey…:

Clear the air

I thought this one would be too strong but it is really not bad. Clove essential oil is also often mentioned as being good for minor environmental respiratory issues (smoke, pollen, dust etc.). So using the above recipe may certainly be on assistance here as well.

I Hate Cloves Essential Oil - orange clove

Warmth in a bowl (yep, made that up)

  • 3 drops Clove
  • 2 drops Cinnamon Bark
  • 1 drop Orange

I really like this one. The Orange works a treat with the other two. Do not however try and substitute Lemon or Lime here… That was horrendous.

YL Tea Tree Essential Oil
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YL Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil
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YL Orange Essential Oil
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Clove and Grounding oils

Most of the diffuser recipes I found online were along the lines of the two listed above. So I decided to have a play (Nic was out so I had some free time). As I was playing with the mixes, I did discover a good mix of Clove and some of the grounding oils such as Sandalwood, Cedarwood and Frankincense. It is actually the first time I can detect the ‘spice’ elements of the clove so worth a shot – maybe with a shot. haha.

And finally, the big test… I added it to my all time favorite Northern Lights Back Spruce. It just felt extremely manly to try my most favorite and hated oil in the diffuser at the same time… And as much as it pains me to say, it really worked! I even left it in there and didn’t pour it out like I have with my failures. Oh, new post idea, worst diffuser blends ever – will do that next – how exciting. Anyway, these two work:

  • 3 drops Northern Lights Black Spruce
  • 2 drops Clove.

I hate to say it, but I like it!

Oh, and also found whilst I was looking for something else some proof that Clove essential oil is also good for sex drive (the study was only on rats, but hey, we will take all the help we can get!).

And, it may just keep the bugs away as well.

Manly Clove Blends

Finally, clove essential oil is also apparently good for the relief of minor (and, as usual I mean minor) headaches. For headaches, try the following:

Headache blend:

  • 2 drops Clove
  • 2 drops Rosemary
  • 3 drops Lavender (trust me – you need this for the aroma and it is also a good calming oil)
  • Top up a roller bottle with a good carrier oil (I use grapeseed)

Roll onto temples, wrists and behind the ears for some natural headache relief. Maybe it is a good thing that Clove is so strong as we all know man-headaches are the strongest know to the human race hey!

You could also try adding some more non-manly oils to his blend to make it more calming for that man-stress such as orange, geranium, or ylang ylang.

And lastly, as I play a bit of sport and try and keep fit, I am always looking for good massage, muscle and joint blends. I found this one in my research and gave it a try:

Massage blend:

  • 6 drops Lemon
  • 6 drops Orange
  • 5 drops Cedarwood
  • 4 drops Clove
  • 1/4 cup Grapeseed Oil (or carrier oil of choice)

I like this one. I actually used it on my muscles the day after the gym and it did seem to relieve them a little.

YL Rosemary Essential Oil
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YL Lavender Essential Oil
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YL Lemon Essential Oil
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YL Cedarwood Essential Oil
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Ok, so maybe it is not that bad, and I have found some good uses for it. It is obviously not my favourite but for those of you who do actually like Cloves, then this should provide you with some good manly advice for using clove essential oil.

Now, I know you have been waiting for this – or even skipped straight to the end to read – so here is my sad sad clove story:

Many years ago when I was a little tacker, my grandmother used to come and visit for a week or two from interstate. She would always arrive with gifts for all of us and mine was always the same – fruit cake – I loved it! And even better was that no one else in the house used to eat it so it was all mine! Then one day my life changed forever… You see Nana forgot to put her whole spices in the blender as she was making the cake. This meant it was choc full of whole clove buds (and cinnamon sticks and other stuff but I didn’t bite them – or else this post might have been about a different spice).

I bit into the cake, got a whole clove bud, which I chewed, vomited everywhere, got into trouble, cried and a stigma was born… Clove has been eradicated from my life from that point on – I even ‘accidentally’ left it out of a curry paste I made in an Indian cooking class once. Until now…

So there it is, my sad story. Hope you enjoyed it and I am sure there was some therapeutic benefits to be writing it. Anyway, I am off… Until next time:

Have fun


Looking for a good Clove essential oil?
Try this Organic Clove Bud essential oil.

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My name is Paul and I live on the east coast of Australia with my wife and six year old son. I also have 19 and 23 year old daughters. I am an ex government and bank worker who took a bit of a sea change and opened my own business by the beach with my amazing wife. If you can do it, try it. You will never look back. You want to know more about me, read my About Me page

5 thoughts on “I Hate Clove Essential Oil – A Man Versus Oils Review”

  1. Clove essential oil is mainly comprised of the chemical Eugenol. While Eugenol does have medicinal properties in very tiny amounts, things can wrong if too much is used. Pretty much that way with everything, but clove oil is classified as an allergen and can reach toxicity easily.

    Pubchem is an excellent resource for sales free information. Following is an excerpt from The Hazard profile of Eugenol, and perhaps the reason you don’t like cloves.

    “This compound is a primary irritant and sensitizer and can cause contact dermatitis. Irritation of the skin, eyes and respiratory tract occurs. Ingestion of this compound may cause gastroenteritis, vomiting and gastric secretion of mucin. It may also cause abdominal burning, nausea, diarrhea and convulsions. Ingestion of large amounts can cause liver damage and gastrointestinal damage. Inhalation of this compound can lead to bronchial irritation, dizziness, and rapid and shallow breathing. Skin contact may cause an inflammatory reaction on the skin. Prolonged or repeated skin contact may cause allergic dermatitis. Eye contact may cause burns. Skin sensitization may also occur. Symptoms of exposure to this type of compound include intense irritation of all tissues, circulatory collapse, dysuria, hematuria, unconsciousness, tachycardia, pulmonary edema, bronchial pneumonia, abortion and irreversible renal damage.”

    • Hi Bob,

      Thanks so much, that is great information. I am not an advocate of the ingestion of any essential oils and even if I was I would definitely not be adding this to the ‘eat’ list. I will look into that research on Eugenol some more and add it to the risks in this post for sure.

      Thanks again for commenting and stopping by


  2. Paul,
    Thank you for making me laugh at your comments and story about cloves! I, too, hate cloves and I don’t really have an interesting or funny childhood story to tell, as you did, I’ve just always hated it. You must be British… my dad was British, and you tell stories like him…
    The only story I have is a recent one. I’ve been going to hair salon’s, massage therapy, etc. where they often use many different products to promote aroma therapy. Never have I had a problem, until recently. The new salon I go to has horrible smelling hair products! They are in the ‘clove’ family, and give me a headache! It takes several of my own nice smelling shampoos to get this ‘clovey’ smell out of my hair. Then, to top it off, the last time I was at the salon, the hair dresser handed me a nice hot towel, which, usually has eucalyptus scent… not this one! Cloves! I immediately told her I couldn’t stand that scent and gave back the hot towel.
    Anyway, thanks for sharing your story, it brought me a ‘chuckle’.
    Heather =))


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