Q. Which part of the banana is used to make "banana oil"?
A. No part. Banana oil is a synthetic compound named for its "banana-like" aroma
So what is banana oil and where does it come from?
It’s a colorless liquid compound formed from isoamyl alcohol and acetic acid. It’s chemical compound name is isoamyl acetate. It’s made either naturally from the banana plant or synthetically. Some mistaken the banana plant for a tree due to its large size. It’s main stem can grow about twenty feet tall with large leaves. It thrives in hot and sunny conditions producing bunches or clusters of bananas.
Banana oil offers numerous benefits. It’s sweet fruity fragrance is used a variety of ways. It’s found in soaps, lotions, creams, candles, paints, potpourri, shampoos, conditioners, foods and perfumes. It’s used to soften leather, make rayon fabric, make penicillin and for aromatherapy benefits. Banana oil can be natural or synthetic. There is a slight difference between the two. The natural version has a rich, sweet, fruity scent while the synthetic version is lighter.
Banana oil offers numerous healthful benefits for skin. Whether you have have dry itchy skin, acne, psoriasis, eczema, poison ivy, fine lines or wrinkles, you can benefit from this oil. The anti-bacterial properties allow for acne relief. Pimples or blemishes can heal at a faster rate. The spread of bacteria is diminished helping to get rid of blackheads. The vitamin and mineral content has antioxidants benefits soothing for psoriasis and eczema. The anti-inflammatory properties soothe dry itchy skin, such as poison ivy. It boost collagen levels and increases skin circulation combatting fine lines and wrinkles. With he benefits of vitamin C and detoxifying properties it helps to provide an overall, youthful, fresh, glowing appearance.
This oil not only helps a variety of skin conditions, it’s healthful for the hair and scalp. It adds shine, elasticity and prevents split ends. Moisture is added to the hair and scalp reducing dryness and flakiness. It helps get rid of dandruff. Overall, its vitamins, minerals and nutrients provide for soft and beautiful hair with improved scalp conditions. This oil is found in commercial and homemade shampoo.
HOMEMADE SKIN CARE
If you enjoy making homemade soap try adding some banana oil to your homemade soap recipes. A little goes a long way, so be careful to not over use. Your soaps can have a luxurious, sweet, banana scent. The synthetic version is less expensive for making soap batches. You can use the natural version, but it will be more costly.
Use this oil for making homemade lip balms. The sweet taste of bananas is very appealing to many people. Homemade lip balms can soothe dry, chapped and cracked lips. Their small size makes them handy to carry anywhere. You can have soft, moisturized and soothed lips with a hint of banana taste.
Use banana oil in a homemade lotion or cream. It’s found in many commercial suntan products. It’s antioxidants benefits help protect against environmental pollutants, that can be damaging to the skin. Skin can be moisturized, soft and protected with banana oil.
Isoamyl acetate, also known as isopentyl acetate, is an organic compound that is the ester formed from isoamyl alcohol and acetic acid. It is a colorless liquid that is only slightly soluble in water, but very soluble in most organic solvents. Isoamyl acetate has a strong odor (similar to Juicy Fruit, a foam banana sweet or a pear drop) which is also described as similar to both banana and pear. Banana oil is a term that is applied either to pure isoamyl acetate or to flavorings that are mixtures of isoamyl acetate, amyl acetate, and other flavors.
ProductionIsoamyl acetate is prepared by the acid catalyzed reaction (Fischer esterification) between isoamyl alcohol and glacial acetic acid as shown in the reaction equation below. Typically, sulfuric acid is used as the catalyst. Alternately, an acidic ion exchange resin can be used as the catalyst.
ApplicationsIsoamyl acetate is used to confer banana flavor in foods. Pear oil commonly refers to a solution of isoamyl acetate in ethanol that is used as an artificial flavor.
It is also used as a solvent for some varnishes and nitrocellulose lacquers, as well as being a honey bee pheromone and can be used to attract large groups of honeybees to a small area. As a solvent and carrier for materials such as nitrocellulose, it was extensively used in the aircraft industry for stiffening and wind-proofing fabric flying surfaces, where it and its derivatives were generally known as 'dope'. Now that most aircraft are all-metal, such use is now limited to model aircraft, where it is still popularly used for strengthening tissue coverings and balsa wood.
Because of its intense, pleasant odor and its low toxicity, isoamyl acetate is used to test the effectiveness of respirators or gas masks.
Occurrence in natureBanana oil is made naturally by the banana plant; it is also produced synthetically.
Isoamyl acetate is released by a honey bee's sting apparatus where it serves as apheromone beacon to attract other bees and provoke them to sting.