Benzoin: Applications, Uses, And Toxicity

Benzoin: Applications, Uses, And Toxicity

The benzoin is a white crystalline solid with a smell of camphor. It consists of an organic compound, which cpuld be acetone. Moreover, other than that it can also possess acetophenone with an adjacent hydroxy. It generates as a result of Catalytic condensation of benzaldehyde, with potassium cyanide as a catalyst.

This name refers to the benzoin resin, obtained from the Styrax benzoin tree. The resin contains benzoic acid, phenyl propionic acid, benzaldehyde, cinnamic acid, benzyl benzoate, and vanillin, which gives it a vanilla smell.

Benzoin: Applications, Uses, And Toxicity
Benzoin: Applications, Uses, And Toxicity

Do not confuse this essential oil with the benzoin compound, which has different composition and origin.

Applications Of Benzoin

Intermediary Agent

As a result of catalytic polymerization, it participates in the synthesis of organic compounds. It is intermediate for the synthesis of the oxime α-benzoin, an analytical reagent for metals. 

In Food

It finds its usage as a food flavoring agent.

Human And Veterinary Medicine

In veterinary medicine, it has uses as an antiseptic of topical application, used in the treatment of skin ulcerations to produce its healing.

It has use in medicine in formulations for the preparation of inhalants for the treatment of bronchitis and expectorants for oral use.

Personal Care

because of its amazing organic structure, it is used in the preparation of deodorants.

Uses Of Benzoin Essential Oil

It has been noted that this essential oil is a circulation stimulant. A beneficial action on the nervous system, manifested by relief of anxiety and stress, has also been reported. Likewise, it has been indicated that it has an antiseptic action on open wounds.

Some compounds present in the benzoin essential oil, such as benzaldehyde, benzoic acid, and benzyl benzoate, are bactericidal and fungicidal substances that prevent a sepsis situation.

There is an indication that it has an antiflatulent and carminative action, an effect attributed to its relaxing action of the abdominal musculature. Likewise, it attributes to a diuretic action that contributes to the elimination of toxic substances for the organism.

This essential oil has its usage as an expectorant that relieves airway congestion. They have uses in the relief of arthritis, through a topical application that allows the absorption of medicinal components through the skin.


As a result of contact with benzoin, you can face redness and irritation of the skin and eyes. Moreover, inhalation of the powder of the compound, irritation of the respiratory tract, manifested by cough. However, in general, it is not a very toxic compound.

Tincture, an alcoholic extract of the resin of the Styrax benzoin tree, is there as a set of toxic actions. Perhaps because the tincture is a mixture of compounds; among them, benzoic acid, benzaldehyde, etc.

Benzoin: Applications, Uses, And Toxicity
Benzoin: Applications, Uses, And Toxicity

Skin contact does not cause significant irritation. But, contact with the eyes can cause irritation, manifested by redness, pain, tearing and hazy vision.

As a result of inhalation of the vapors of the benzoin tincture, one may feel irritation of the respiratory tract, cough, sneezing, runny nose, hoarseness, and sore throat.

Finally, ingestion of tincture can cause gastrointestinal irritation, manifested by abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Subscribe to our monthly Newsletter
Subscribe to our monthly Newsletter