Constituent Spotlight Vol 2.

Lecture series

There is an important, ongoing debate in the aromatherapy world. How much can we tell about a whole essential oil from what we know about its constituents? And if we have good research on a particular constituent, does it mean each oil that contains it reflects those properties?

Join Dr Joy Bowles for this unique series of eight monthly lectures where she explores this relationship in detail.

Each spotlight session focuses on one or two important constituents. Dr. Joy first examines what we know about the chemistry and properties of the featured compound(s), and she then compares this knowledge with essential oils that contain it as a major constituent.

The Spotlight Constituent Kit

You have the option to purchase a complete, boxed collection of the 9 constituents we will be studying in 2024. (There are eight classes, but some cover more than one constituent.) The Spotlight Kit contains 4ml of each constituent, is sold separately by our third-party partner here. All the constituents are of natural origin. 
Using the kit you will be able to experience each constituent in isolation, understanding how it contributes to the aroma of essential oils containing it.  

Which came first, the oil or the constituent?

The research on essential oils is still evolving, so we generally turn to whatever resources are available, including research on individual constituents. In this lecture series, Dr Joy Bowles explores what is known about a single constituent, and then compares this to what we know about essential oils containing it.

If you have the Constituent Spotlight Kit you will be able to experience the constituents individually and see how they contribute to the overall aroma of the oil. We will devote a significant portion of the live sessions to the olfactory experience!

Each lecture consists of:

  • Introduction and general characteristics of the constituent
  • Review of research of the single constituent
  • Sensory experience of the single aromatic material
  • Comparison of data on essential oils containing the constituent
  • Discussion

Who is the series is for:

  • Professional aromatherapists who wish to understand more about the relationship between constituents and essential oils
  • Complementary medicine professionals who want to learn about the evidence around individual constituents
  • Perfumers and fragrance enthusiasts who want to know more about the properties of isolates (single constituents from essential oils)
  • Aroma-nerds who just cannot get enough knowledge 🙂

What You Get in the Class

Access to each lecture as it happens, together with an interactive Q&A to discuss issues and compare notes. Live lectures will be held at 5pm Pacific time.

A recording of both the lecture and the Q&A session to view later.

A downloadable handout with all the presentation slides, plus a list of citations and other resources.

You’ll have access to the recording of the webinar to watch and review any time. No deadlines, no limits.

(Optional, highly recommended). You’ll be able to experience each constituent separately with a this boxed kit that contains thirteen samples of 4ml each. Sold separately and shipped worldwide by our third party partner, it is not included in the course price. Order here. Please note that due to safety regulations the kit has to be shipped as hazardous material which is reflected in the shipping cost.

Dates and topics

(UPDATED DATE) March 26 at 5pm PST – Citronellal
From repelling mosquitos to playing a role in olfactory training, Citronellal has many great applications, as does Citronella – the essential oil it’s found in.

April 23 at 5pm PST – Citral
What does Lemon Myrtle, Lemongrass and Verbena have in common? Yes, citral, this powerful anti-fungal constituent with a lemony smell. 

May 28 at 5pm PST – Nerolidol
Discover this interesting constituent found abundantly in Niaouli oil.

June 18 at 5pm PST – Nerol
While it may be a minor constituent, nerol certainly packs a punch – and is found in some of the most precious essential oils, including Immortelle.


September 17 at 5pm PST – Menthol
This constituent will most certainly wake up your senses, or numb your nerves. Yes, the topic of this lecture is menthol, the tingly scent that quite fittingly comes in sharp ice-like crystals.

October 22 at 5pm PST – Benzol benzoate
Perhaps a little obscure as a constituent, though the oils it’s found should definitely ring a bell. Peru Balsam, Benzoin and Jasmine absolute are where you’ll find this interesting constituent.

November 19 at 5pm PST – Carvacrol
The scent of carvacrol may not be your favorite, we cannot overlook its properties. You will find it in Oregano, Marjoram and Savory – and in our November lecture.

December 17 at 5pm PST – Cedrol & Cedrene
Oh Cedarwood, oh Cedarwood… this December fill your house with the smell of Cedar, or at least its two main constituents in the final lecture of 2024.

Constituent Kit

To enjoy the lectures to the fullest, get a bespoke constituent kit. It includes all nine constituents that will be discussed through the series, all of natural origin. 
The cost of the kit is $US34 plus shipping and it’s dispatched from the USA. Please note that it due to regulations is has to be shipped as hazardous material and the cost of shipping will reflect that, especially if shipped internationally. 

Dr. E. Joy Bowles; PhD, BSc Hons

Author | Educator | Researcher

Joy wrote the very first course on essential oil chemistry in Australia in 1991. Her book, The Chemistry of Aromatherapeutic Oils (2003) is the textbook for many aromatherapy courses the world over.

For her PhD, awarded in 2007, Joy investigated how essential oils might affect cognitive function in dementia. After years of experience in primary healthcare, Joy is back to creating courses on the chemistry and evidence-based therapeutics of essential oils. Helping others understand the chemistry and pharmacology of essential oils is one of her life’s passions.

In 2021,  Joy received the Alliance of International Aromatherapist Outstanding Contribution to Aromatherapy Award in recognition of her long-standing devotion to the field. 

What previous students say about our courses:

I absolutely love what I’m learning. Joy’s enthusiasm just adds to the learning journey. But, now I want to reread all of my research through this new lens. ~ Traci Green

Many thanks Joy as you are always so articulate interesting and fun to listen to. Thank you for sharing your knowledge. you truly make it full of joy! ~ Farida Irani

Dr. Bowles’ passion is beyond infectious. She’s extremely knowledgeable and delightful. I’m so grateful to learn from her. ~ Petra Gilbert

A unique way to stay connected and keep learning with us!

Ready to get started?