The most commonly used varieties of chamomile are Roman chamomile (Anthemis nobilis) and German chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla, syn. M. recutita).
Roman chamomile is an evergreen perennial with aromatic, finely- divided leaves. In summer, long stalked, solitary flowers are produced, with creamy white or yellow discs.
Chamomile flowers are collected when they are in full bloom and used fresh, frozen, or dried. The oil is extracted from the flowers by steam distillation.
Chamomile is one of the gentlest essential oils you can use, making it suitable for children. It is anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, bactericidal and sedative.
Aromatherapists have used it for bruises, allergies, stress and depression. It is helpful for even the most sensitive of skins. It is used in aromatherapy to help hormone fluctuations and to ease period pains.
Many believe it to be calming for the mind, body and soul, soothing for both the emotions and the skin.