What is the makeup of Chrism Oil?

OMGosh, it smells. so. GOOD! When I was confirmed two years ago at Easter Vigil, the scent stayed with me for days, and whenever I’m at Mass when a baptism is celebrated, I always smell it on Father’s hands when I receive Holy Eucharist. SO so so good. . .

Is there any way to duplicate it for home use? I can imagine using it in various ways around the home–from fragrancing to using in the laundry to giving twosweetgirls after-bath massages with it.

This is, of course, not to say that “oh I’ll just use Holy Chrism Oil in a load of laundry”; I’m wondering what the essential oils or scents are that make up the oil?

TIA! :thumbsup:

I love the smell of it too! I don’t know the entire answer to your question. I believe one of the fragrancing oils is balsam…that gives it that minty/evergreen smell.

I would be interested if someone could answer this question more fully!

It’s olive oil. What’s added to it depends on the diocese but it’s usually balsam.

For a few years I got hungry every time we celebrated baptisms because the Chrism smelled like vanilla. It had a brown sediment that I swear could have been crushed vanilla beans. It definitely wasn’t balsam during that period.

I’ve always wondered myself. It smells soooooooo good, and the scent lasts for days!

It’s my understanding that suppliers of Chrism often guard their recipes. Chances are that even your diocese doesn’t know everything that goes into the Chrism. (They obviously know about the olive oil and any major ingredient like balsam.

I’ve read the Russian Orthodox recipe for Chrism, and it has hundreds of ingredients I’ve never heard of (such as Black Balm of Peru) in odd quantities of measure such as poods and verts.

Traditionally it’s cooked (I use this word deliberately) only once in the Patriarch’s reign. It bubbles away all during Lent while the clergy of the Patriarchate read Psalms and the Gospels over it continually. The last few ingredients are added on Holy Monday. On Holy Thursday it’s carried into the Patriarch’s Cathedral during the Great Entrance at the Divine Liturgy that day.

Just before it’s blessed all the old Chrism is added to it.

I love the smell of Chrism too. Balsam is the main ingredient. A year ago my wife and I were my nephew’s godparents. My wife got some on her and that was all I could smell on the way back home. I have found some stick incense with balsam but it is not the same.

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Balsam is the smell you love, just like most here have posted. You can get the essence and just mix it with an oil base, olive is what I use, so it won’t evaporate so quick. My house has smelled that way for almost 2 years now.

I used to order the chrism essence for the Chrism Mass. I would buy it from the Holy Rood Guild.

I don’t know what I enjoyed opening up more: my QVC cosmetic packages or the one from the Holy Rood Guild. Of course, the bottle was sealed and only the bishop can open it. But, somehow, the smell permeates and it is wonderful.

The Holy Rood Guild also makes an incense with the essence of Chrism. I’ve ordered it and when I’ve opened up the container, the aroma fills up the whole sacristy. One time, I was filling up the boat when I took a huge whiff of it. My rector caught me. I told him that the aroma was so good. He took a whiff. The bshop walked in as we were sniffing. :eek: He started laughing. Since then, we’ve been using that particular incense.