Tolubalsem (Myroxylon balsamum)
Sweet tasting and antioxidant-rich, tolu balsam deliciously softens and soothes the skin.
Belonging to the Myroxylon genus, Myroxylon balsamum trees are indigenous to Central and South America. Growing up to 40 metres in height, these trees produce evergreen, feather-like leaves and white flowers with yellow stamens.
The balsam is extracted from the trees using a tapping method that involves making incisions through the bark and into the dark, hard wood of the trees to release the resinous gum inside. The trees are tapped this way for eight months of the year. Tolu Balsam can vary in colour from translucent yellow to reddish-brown and has a highly viscous texture. As the balsam dries, it becomes hard and resin-like.
Tolu Balsam contains vanillin, an organic compound that is the primary component of vanilla. Vanillin is known not only for its sweet, balsamic flavour but also for its antioxidant properties, which help to soften and soothe the skin.