Linalool is a terpene that’s found in more than 200 plants and takes partial credit for the scent of Earl Grey tea and even some wines.
As a reminder: terpenes are fragrant oils found in plants that produce unique flavors and aromas. Along with food and beverages, linalool is regularly added to perfumes, cosmetics and soaps. As if that wasn’t enough, this hard-working terpene is used as a natural insect-repellent; studies have shown that it effectively wards off fruit flies, houseflies and even mosquitoes.
What aromas are associated with linalool?
Linalool has a floral, spicy, woody scent and a light floral or spicy tropical taste. Linalool is most known for being the dominant component of lavender, although it’s also found in other aromatic plants like mint and cinnamon.
Keep in mind, each cannabis strain has many terpenes that work together to create a complex aroma profile.
What are the reported effects of linalool?
Traditionally, people have used lavender for its calming properties, but what does modern science say? In mice, studies have shown that inhaling linalool (one of the two main terpenes in lavender) can result in a calming effect (read more here and here). Another study showed that when mice were injected with caffeine, then inhaled linalool, their level of hyperactivity was reduced to a near normal motility, counteracting the effects of the injected caffeine.
Although more linalool research has been done on mice than on people, some scientific studies have shown that inhaling lavender oil can have a calming effect on people too (read more here and here).
So, if linalool is in lavender and lavender is commonly used for its calming properties, does that mean cannabis strains with linalool will be calming too? The answer is: we don’t know.
Research on cannabis and its related effects is still being conducted and over time, more information on terpenes such as linalool will become widely available. It’s important to balance any perceived positive effects with the reported negative effects of cannabis consumption.
The bottom line: there isn’t enough evidence to support claims connecting linalool in cannabis with any specific effects. You can however use a strain’s terpene profile to choose your favorite aroma or taste.